WHAT WE BELIEVE

We unite around these core convictions

“Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.  There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called;  one Lord, one faith, one baptism;  one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.” (Ephesians 4:3-6)

We Believe In God, The Three-In-One
Father, Son and Holy Spirit existing in an eternal relationship of self-giving love.
(Matthew 28:18-20, 1 Corinthians 12:4-6, 2 Corinthians 13:14)

We Believe In One God
God, the Father, the Creator of the heavens and the earth, is good and keeps his promises. He is the great I AM and the Ancient of Days.  God calls out people to be his own and blesses them so that they can be a blessing to all. God has spoken through his prophets and through his Word, and definitively revealed himself in and through Jesus.

We Believe In One Lord
Jesus Christ the Son of God. Jesus, the Messiah, is the risen, reigning, and returning King, the object of our faith. He is the eternal Word of God who became flesh and lived among humans. He was crucified, died, was buried, and was resurrected on the third day. He will return to judge the world and to consummate the fullness of His Kingdom in the new heaven and new earth.

We Believe In One Spirit
God’s Holy Spirit fills every Christian and unites us in one body; our Teacher and Counselor who gives us wisdom, discernment, and conviction of sin; our Guide and Enabler who graces us with gifts to serve others and the power to be loving and faithful; our Comforter, Intercessor and Advocate before God’s throne; our Seal and Deposit, who guarantees our glorious inheritance.

We Believe In One Faith
We believe the Bible to be inspired by God, a reliable witness to the story of God’s people through the ages, and authoritative for our life and teaching. Faith comes from hearing the message and the message is heard through the word of Christ.  We view the Scriptures as the primary instrument for introducing God’s story and message to the world – the Good News of the Kingdom of Heaven. As people of the Book, we embrace this story as our story and God’s future as our future.

We Believe In One Baptism
Salvation begins and ends with God – it is God’s work and it is accomplished by God’s grace, love, kindness and mercy (Titus 3:3-8). God alone saves, but we are free to accept or reject God’s offer of salvation.  The biblical response to God’s offer of salvation involves faith (Acts 16:31-34), repentance (Acts 2:36-39), and baptism (Acts 8:35-39). As we see in the many conversion narratives in the book of Acts, God meets the convert in faith, repentance, and baptism and the result is salvation (receiving the forgiveness of sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit).  Although believing, repenting, and being immersed are things we do, they are not works that in any way earn salvation. They are simply the appropriate biblical response to accept God’s gracious offer.

We Believe In One Body
The biblical word for church means “congregation, assembly.” We are a Christian community that gathers to worship and to learn to put the teachings of Jesus into practice. We are a “called out” people – called out from death to life, from darkness to light, and from captivity to freedom.  We are the family of God, the body of Christ, citizens of the Kingdom of God.

We Believe In One Hope
Jesus came to give us abundant, authentic and eternal life. This eternal kind of life is the life of the age to come, when God’s Kingdom fully comes and God’s will is done on the new earth as it is in the heavens. But that eternal kind of life begins now, as we experience it in some measure through the Holy Spirit, through our relationships with God and each other, and as we see the Kingdom break in on this world as God’s will is put into practice. We believe in the Great Resurrection in that age to come, when God will live with us and we will reign with God.  Because we have been given this eternal kind of life, our citizenship is in Heaven and our ultimate loyalty is to our Liberating King – far above any other group or party.

 

We offer the above statement of our convictions with humility and with no illusion that we could ever capture the fullness of God’s truth in any document. We embrace and celebrate the mystery of faith, and we look forward to Jesus’s return, when we will know fully as we are fully known.