Basic Beliefs

1. About God

God is the Creator and Ruler of the universe. There is one God eternally existent in three distinct persons in one divine essence: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. These three are co-equal and are one God.

Genesis 1:1,25,27,3:22; Psalm 90:2; Matthew 28:19; 1 Peter 1:2; 2 Corinthians 13:14

2. About Jesus Christ

Jesus Christ, the Eternal Son, is the image of the invisible God. He is co-equal with the Father. To accomplish our redemption, He took upon himself the form of man, being conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. By His perfect obedience and substitutionary death on the cross, He has purchased our redemption. He arose from the dead after three days “for our justification” in the body in which He was crucified and demonstrated His power over sin and death. He ascended into Heaven, where He is now seated at the right hand of God the Father, as our interceding High Priest. He will come a second time personally, bodily, and visibly to gather the believers unto Himself, and to establish His kingdom. Finally, He will judge the living and the dead and make an eternal separation between believers and unbelievers.

Matthew 1:22-23; Isaiah 9:6; John 1:1-5,14:10-30; Hebrews 4:14,15; 1 Corinthians 15:3-4;Romans 1:3-4; Acts 1:9-11; 1 Timothy 6:14-15; Titus 2:13; John 14:1,7

3. About the Holy Spirit

The Holy Spirit is a divine person eternally one and co-equal with the Father and with the Son. His ministry is to call, to regenerate repentant sinners, to sanctify believers, and to preserve them in the one true faith. He guides and comforts the children of God, and provides them with power for living, understanding of spiritual truth, and guidance in doing what is right. He directs and empowers the Church in fulfillment of the Great Commission, and “convicts the world of sin and of righteousness and judgment”. He gives every believer a spiritual gift when they are saved. As Christians we seek to live under His control daily.

2 Corinthians 3:17; John 16:7-13, 14:16,17; Acts 1:8; 1 Corinthians 2:12,3:16; Ephesians 1:13; Galatians 5:25; Ephesians 5:18

4. About the Bible

The Bible, including both the Old and New Testaments as originally given, is God's Word to us. It is verbally and plenary inspired and free from error in the whole and in the part, and is therefore the final and authoritative guide for Christian faith and conduct. Since God's Word is the only completely reliable and truthful authority, we accept the Bible as our manual for living. Our first question when faced with a decision is “What does the Bible say?”. We practice daily Bible reading, Bible study, and Bible memorization. The Bible is the basis for all we believe.

2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20,21; 2 Timothy 1:13; Psalms 12:6,119:105,160; Proverbs 30:5

5. About Human Beings

People were originally created in the image and after the likeness of God to live in His fellowship. They fell into sin through the temptation of Satan and thereby lost fellowship with God, became totally depraved, and are under the wrath of God.

Genesis 1:27; Psalm 8:3-5; Isaiah 53:6a; Romans 3:23; Isaiah 59:1,2

6. About Salvation

Salvation is God's free gift to us but we must accept it. We can never make up for our sin by self-improvements or good works. The knowledge and benefit of Christ's redemption from sin is brought to us through the means of grace, namely the Bible and the sacraments. Through the Word, both the law and the Gospel, God convicts of sin and bestows His grace in Christ unto the forgiveness of sin to all who repent and believe. Only by trusting in Jesus Christ as God's offer of forgiveness can anyone be saved from sin's penalty. When we turn from our self-ruled life and turn to Jesus in faith we are saved. Eternal life begins the moment on receives Jesus Christ into his life by faith.

Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:8,9; John 14:6,1:12; Titus 3:5; Galatians 3:26; Romans 5:1

7. About Eternity

People were created to exist forever. We will either exist eternally separated from God by sin, or eternally with God through forgiveness and salvation. To be eternally separated from God is Hell. To be eternally in union with Him is eternal life. Heaven and Hell are real places of eternal existence.

John 3:16,2:25,5:11-13; Romans 6:23; Revelation 20:15; Matthew 1:8,2:44,46