OUR PASTOR

Calvin Liles, Hon. D.D., is the founder and Senior Pastor of Midtown Tabernacle. He and his wife Kathy live in Townsend, Delaware. They have 3 grown children, though they have opened their home to many more over the years. As a young man, Calvin majored in Practical Theology at Christian Life College in Stockton, California. He also worked as an industrial electrician and electronics engineer for over 30 years. In 2001, he and his family followed the calling and leading of the Lord to establish an Apostolic church that would “Bring the Name of Jesus” to Middletown, Delaware.

At Midtown, Pastor Calvin leads with authenticity and approachability. Calvin is an avid hunter and outdoorsman, a skilled musician, and a knowledgeable woodworker, but his real passion is reaching the lost. Throughout his life, Calvin has helped start and establish several home missions works all over the United States. Most of his ministry has revolved around helping young people, playing music and being engaged in worship, which have become some of the defining characteristics of Midtown. In 2013, in recognition for his work in the community, his work with youth and children, and his experience starting churches and establishing music programs all across the United States, he received an honorary Doctorate of Divinity from International Christian University.

OUR HISTORY

Midtown Tabernacle was founded in the year 2000 by Pastor Calvin and Kathy Liles and their family in response to a calling and a burden for the lost of the Middletown area. By February 2001, what had started out as a Bible Study in a local home grew to a small Apostolic Pentecostal church holding services in the Middletown Youth Center with a reputation for powerful worship services. Today, over a decade later, we’ve undergone several changes, including a new location, but we are still Apostolic, still known for our worship and are still dedicated to reaching Middletown and its surrounding communities with the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

OUR MISSION

At Midtown, we embrace every individual with open arms, we teach and preach the Bible as the infallible and inspired Word of God, we disciple, we build up, and we strive to live a life holy and acceptable unto God, which is our reasonable service. As such, we envision Midtown Tabernacle to be a place where every individual can belong, can serve, can worship, can connect, and can grow. The mission of Midtown Tabernacle is seven-fold. Our primary focuses are to:

  1. Bring the Name of Jesus to Middletown
  2. Reach our area with the Gospel
  3. Minister to our community
  4. Offer hope to the hopeless
  5. Provide healing to the hurting
  6. Help bring unity within the body of Christ
  7. Serve God wholeheartedly in the beauty of holiness

OUR BELIEFS
The Bible is the inspired and only infallible and authoritative Word of God. Its truths are absolute and still relevant to today’s world.
There is only one God and His Name is Jesus (Deuteronomy 6:4; John 10:30). He is the Creator of heaven and earth, and of all living beings. Over time, God has revealed Himself to mankind in three manifestations: Father in Creation, Son in Redemption, and the Holy Spirit in Regeneration.

FATHER IN CREATION
God is a Spirit (John 4:24). He is the Eternal One, the Creator of all things, and the Father of all humanity by creation. He is the First and the Last, and beside Him there is no God (Isaiah 44:6). There was no God formed before Him; neither shall be there any after Him (Isaiah 43:10).

SON IN REDEMPTION
Jesus is the Son of God according to the flesh (Romans 1:3) and the very God Himself according to the Spirit (Matthew 1:23). Jesus is the Christ (Matthew 16:16); the creator of all things (Colossians 1:16-17); God with us (Matthew 1:23); God made flesh (John 1:1-14); God manifested in the flesh (I Timothy 3:16);He which was, which is, and which is to come, the Almighty (Revelation 1:8);the mighty God, everlasting Father, and Prince of peace (Isaiah 9:6). Jesus Himself testified of His identity as God when He said, “He that hath seen me hath seen the Father” (John 14:7-11) and “I and my Father are one” (John 10:30). It took shedding of blood for the remission of the sins of the world (Hebrews 9:22), but God the Father was a Spirit and had no blood to shed. Thus He prepared a body of flesh and blood (Hebrews 10:5) and came to earth as a man in order to save us, for in Isaiah 43:11 He said, “Beside me there is no Saviour.”

HOLY SPIRIT IN REGENERATION
The Holy Ghost is not a third person in the Godhead, but rather the Spirit of God (the Creator), the Spirit of the resurrected Christ. The Holy Ghost comes to dwell in the hearts and lives of everyone who believes and obeys the gospel, as the comforter, Sustainer, and keeper (John 14:16-26; Romans 8:9-11).

Sin is the transgression of the law, or commandments of God (I John 3:4). Because we are all descendants of Adam, all have sinned (Romans 3:23). The wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23).
Jesus is the only way to salvation (Acts 4:12). He was the fullness of God robed in sinless flesh; 100% God and 100% man (Colossians 2:9). He was born of a virgin and He lived a sinless life. He performed many miracles and taught extensively. But most importantly, He died in the stead of mankind on a rugged cross and paid our ransom for sin with His blood. Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection are applied to our lives when we experience New Testament salvation (I Corinthians 15:1-4). The New Testament experience of salvation consists of repentance from sin (death), water baptism in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ for the remission of sins (burial), and the baptism of the Holy Spirit (resurrection), after which the Christian is to live a godly life (Acts 2:36-41).
Water baptism is an essential part of New Testament salvation and not merely a symbolic ritual (Galatians 3:27). It is part of entering into the kingdom of God, and therefore, it is not merely a part of local church membership. Jesus called it the birth of the ware (John 3:5).

MODE OF BAPTISM
Water baptism (from Gr. baptizo meaning “to immerse”) is to be administered only by immersion. Paul said, “We are buried with him [Jesus Christ] by baptism” (Romans 6:4; see Colossians 2:12). Jesus, as our example, came up “out of the water” (Mark 1:10), and Philip and the eunuch, in the Book of Acts went down “into the water” and came up “out of the water” (Acts 8:38-39).

FORMULA OF BAPTISM
The name in which baptism is administered is vitally important, and this name is Jesus. Jesus’ last command to His disciples was, “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost” (Matthew 28:19). We should notice that He said name (singular) not names. As previously explained, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost are not names of separate persons, but titles of positions held by God. An angelic announcement revealed God’s saving name in the New Testament: “She shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21).

EXAMPLES OF BAPTISM
The Apostles understood that Jesus was the name to use at baptism, and from the day that the church of God was established (the Day of Pentecost) until the end of their ministry, they baptized all nations (Jews–Acts 8:16; Gentiles–Acts 19:5) in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, the only name given for our salvation. In every Biblical example, believers were ONLY baptized in the name of Jesus (Acts 2:38; 8:12; 8:16; 10:48; 19:5; 22:16).

The baptism of the Holy Spirit is the birth of the Spirit (John 3:5). This spiritual baptism is a necessary part of entering the kingdom of God and is evidenced by speaking in other tongues (other languages) as the Spirit of God give utterance. It was prophesied by Joel (Joel 2:28-29) and Isaiah (Isaiah 28:11), foretold by John the Baptist (Matthew 3:11), purchased by the blood of Jesus, and promised by Him to His disciples (John 14:26; 15:16). The Holy Ghost was first poured out on the Day of Pentecost upon the Jews (Acts 2:1-4), then upon the Samaritans (Acts 8:17), and later upon the Gentiles (Acts 10:44-46; 19:6). “The promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call” (Acts 2:39).

THE BAPTISM OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
Speaking in other tongues as the Spirit of God gives utterance is the manifestation God has given as the definite, indisputable, supernatural witness or sign of the baptism of the Holy Ghost (Acts 2:4; 10:46; 19:6). It was prophesied by the prophet Isaiah as the rest and the refreshing (Isaiah 28:11-12), foretold by Jesus as a sign that would follow believers of the gospel (Mark 16:17), and experienced by Jews and Gentiles alike. Speaking in tongues means speaking miraculously in a language unknown to the speaker, as the Spirit gives utterance. Tongues can be classified in two ways, according to function: (1)speaking in other tongues as the initial evidence of the baptism of the Holy Ghost and (2)the gift of tongues as mentioned in I Corinthians.

THE GIFT OF TONGUES
The gift of “divers kinds of tongues,” mentioned by Paul in I Corinthians 12:1-12 and concerning which he gave regulations in I Corinthians 14:1-40, is given by both for self-edification (I Corinthians 14:4) and for the edification of the church (I Corinthians 14:27-28). In church meetings the gift of tongues is used to give a public message, and it is to be interpreted. Since this gift can be misused in public, it needs proper regulation (I Corinthians 14:23-28). Not all believers exercise the gift of tongues, which is different in function from tongues given by God as the initial witness of the baptism of the Holy Ghost. Paul said, “Forbid not to speak with tongues” (I Corinthians 14:39) and “I thank my God, I speak with tongues more than ye all” (I Corinthians 14:8).

After we are saved from sin, we are commanded, “Go, and sin no more” (John 8:11). We are commanded to live soberly, righteously, and godly in this present world (Titus 2:12) and warned that without holiness no one shall see the Lord (Hebrews 12:14). We must present ourselves as holy unto God (Romans 12:1), cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit (II Corinthians 7:1), and separate ourselves from all worldliness (James 4:4). If the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear? (I Peter 4:18). No one can live a holy life by his own power, but only through the Holy Spirit. “Ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you” (Acts 1:8).
Salvation was not the only thing purchased on Calvary. The redemptive work of Christ on the cross provides healing of the human body in answer to believing prayer (Isaiah 53:5; Matthew 8:16-17; I Peter 2:24). Jesus went everywhere healing those who were sick (Matthew 4:23-24), and He commanded His disciples to do the same (Matthew 10:8). He said concerning those who believe the gospel, “They shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover” (Mark 16:18). Mighty healings and miracles followed the disciples wherever the gospel was preached. There is no sickness or disease too hard for God (James 5:14-16).
40 days after Jesus was raised from the dead, He ascended to Heaven. Jesus left this earth in the clouds and He will soon return in the same manner (Acts 1:11). We believe that He will come to rapture, or catch away, His Bride, the Church (I Thessalonians 4:16-17). We also believe that there will be a resurrection of the saved and the lost (John 5:28-29; I Corinthians 15:13-23; Revelation 20:12-13). The saved will be raised to everlasting life; the lost will be raised to everlasting damnation (Matthew 25:32-34, 41, 46).
Jesus said that He came to give us life and that the life He gives is abundant and eternal. Abundant as in “over and above anything the world has to offer” and eternal as in “having no end.” Christianity is a lifestyle and when that lifestyle is lived according to Jesus’ teachings it is the most fulfilling, exciting, joyful, peaceful, positive, thrilling lifestyle one could ever possibly experience. We firmly believe that one’s true and full potential can never be reached outside of a vibrant relationship with Jesus Christ!