ESSENTIALS OF OUR FAITH
ESSENTIALS OF OUR FAITH
We believe in one God who is the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. We believe in one faith that saves us through Jesus Christ. We believe in one church, the body of Christ.
We believe in one God, the sovereign Creator and Sustainer of all things, infinitely perfect and eternally existing as One in three Persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We believe that each Person of the Trinity is engaged in all that God has done, does now, and will yet do. God is the One who is, who was, and who is to come; the Almighty. God is majestic, compassionate, and lovingly desires to be known. God has made Himself known generally through creation, specifically through the Holy Scriptures, and finally in the living Word who became flesh; Jesus Christ our Lord.
We believe in God the Father, who adopts as children all who are drawn by the Holy Spirit to believe in His Son, giving to them all the riches of His glorious Kingdom. The loving heart of the Father is poured out in eternal redemption through Jesus Christ and in ongoing discipline that shapes His children into the image of Christ.
We believe in Jesus Christ, eternal Son of God and promised Messiah, who became flesh through His miraculous conception by the Holy Spirit and His virgin birth. He who is true God became a true man, united in one Person forever. He died on the cross as the sacrifice for sins according to the Scriptures. On the third day He arose bodily from the dead, ascended into heaven, where, at the right hand of the Father, is the High Priest and Mediator. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life; no one comes to the Father but by faith in Him.
We believe that the Holy Spirit has come to apply the saving work of Christ to hearts and lives. He convicts persons of sin and draws them to the Savior. He instructs and guides persons into all truth. The Spirit awakens from spiritual death those whom God has chosen uniting them to Christ, making Christ real to them, gathering them into His people and sealing their salvation. Dwelling in their hearts, the Spirit sanctifies them for lives of holiness and empowers them with gifts for ministry in the Church and mission to the world.
We believe that in the beginning, God created all things good. Humanity crowns creation. However, through the disobedience of those made in the image of God, the whole of creation fell into the darkness of sin and rebellion. In love, God initiated the plan of redemption, which stands upon the historic events of the crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus Christ. Being estranged from God and condemned by sinfulness, salvation is wholly dependent upon the work of God’s free grace. God credits His righteousness to those who put their faith in Christ alone for their salvation, thereby justifies them in His sight. Only such as are born of the Holy Spirit and receive Jesus Christ become children of God and heirs of eternal life.
We believe in the fullness of time, Jesus Christ will leave the Father’s side to return to earth in glory to fulfill God’s promised purposes. This return to the earth will be personal, visible, and in bodily form. All believers look forward to this day when their lowly bodies will be transformed to be like Christ’s glorious body and the Church, the Bride, will be presented to Her Bridegroom. Christ will liberate creation from its corruption, judge the living and the dead, usher in a new heaven and earth, and establish God’s everlasting Kingdom.
We believe the Bible is the infallible rule of faith and practice. The Holy Spirit spoke through its authors and witnesses that it is in truth the very Word of God, God’s gift to the world and guide for His people.
We believe God has sovereignly called people to be the true Church, the Body of Christ. The true Church is composed of all persons, who through a saving faith in Jesus Christ and the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit, are united together as the Body of Christ.
All believers are baptized into this Body,which finds expression in visible, yet imperfect, local congregations where the Word of God is preached in its purity and the sacraments of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper are administered in their integrity, where scriptural discipline is practiced, where loving fellowship is maintained, and where theological, ethical, moral, and financial accountability are demonstrated.
The Church is the fruit of God’s redemptive work; a covenanted community of worship, prayer, study, and service, called to love God and neighbor and to live out the ethical and moral imperatives revealed in Holy Scripture. It is the responsibility of the Church and its leaders to develop, equip, and release people into their God-given ministries in the Church and the world.
The Church awaits the return of Her Lord, Jesus Christ, the Head of the Church.
We believe the Lord Jesus Christ commands all believers to proclaim the Gospel throughout the world and make disciples of all nations. All believers are called to be ministers and witnesses to God’s amazing grace and participate in the task of making disciples, for which God gives the Church powers, gifts, and talents.
We celebrate the Sacraments of Baptism and Communion because both are stressed by Jesus Christ in the Bible. We baptize both infants and believers (older children and adults) and recognize all other Christian baptisms as long as they were administered in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
We celebrate the Lord’s Supper (also known as Communion or the Eucharist) once a month. We believe the Lord’s Supper brings us into the spiritual presence of God.
We have two additional practices or “ordinances.” Infant dedication is an option for parents who prefer to wait until their child is older to be baptized (after they have accepted Christ as their own Lord and savior). We also practice Foot Washing on the Thursday before Easter, based on the example given to us by Christ at the Last Supper.