ESSENTIALS OF OUR CHRISTIAN FAITH
Authority of the Bible –
We believe that the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments are the church’s first and final authority on faith and life. We believe that the Bible is true and it is, in fact, our only absolute standard of truth.
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correction and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Tim 3:16-17
We believe that the God who is spoken of in the Bible exists, and that He is who the Bible says He is: Creator of heaven and earth and all things in them. He is also reconciler and sustainer. He is God in three persons –God-Jesus Christ-Holy Spirit.
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Genesis 1:1
“I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.” Revelation 1:8
God’s love and redemptive plan for mankind is revealed and culminated in Jesus Christ. He is fully God and fully man. By Jesus’ sacrificial death and resurrection humankind has forgiveness, now and forever. By acknowledging Jesus as Lord, we become obedient to His will in our lives. By acknowledging Jesus as Savior, we confess any sin or disobedience in our past, present or future and on an on-going basis partake of the transforming power of God-Jesus Christ-Holy Spirit in our lives. Jesus is the only way to salvation. ("There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved." Acts 4:12)
He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast. Ephesians 2:8-9
We believe in the promise of Jesus Christ to be with us always in the form of the Holy Spirit.
We believe that God continues to reveal Himself through the work of the Holy Spirit and that we depend on the Holy Spirit to help us interpret God’s Word accurately. We believe that the revelation of the Holy Spirit is always consistent with Scripture and that he gives us gifts and power to be witnesses for Christ.
But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. John 14:26
And you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere ... ." Acts 1:8a
The Mission of Each Christian Believer and Together as the Church-
Individually and together our most high purpose is to worship and praise God.
To our God and Father be the glory forever and ever. Philippians 4:20
Speak to one another with psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Ephesians 5:19-20
To be a witness to the love and ability of Jesus Christ to set us free from sin and bring us into an intimate relationship with our heavenly Father.
Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded to you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age. Matthew 28:19-20
To help believers (one another) grow in faith and unity.
To prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. Ephesians 4:12-13
4.GIVING/GOODNESS AND MERCY –
To care for the poor and needy in the name of the Lord.
Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you? The King will reply, “I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.” Matthew 25:37-40
We believe that God intended marriage to be between one man and one woman.
For this reason man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh. Genesis 2:24 – also stated by Jesus in Matthew 19:5 and Mark 10:7-8
Leadership in the Church and Ordination -
We believe that in addition to confessing Jesus as Lord and Savior, those that we ordain as Elder, Deacons, and Pastors are held to a higher standard. We uphold the Biblical standards for our leaders of fidelity in the covenant of marriage, which is between a man and a woman, and chastity in singleness . We further uphold the requirement that persons refusing to repent of any self-acknowledged practice which scripture identifies as sin shall not be ordained and/or installed as Deacons, Ruling Elders or Teaching Elders (Ministers of Word and Sacrament).
Taken from "We Believe and Proclaim" –approved by Session (the Pastor and Elders) May 2011