What We Believe
Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life
Jesus is the Way, and Christianity is a way of life. Yet, Christianity is also a way of thinking about God and the world. Jesus speaks of himself as the “Truth.” Christians confess that the truth about God was visible in the person of Jesus Christ. Jesus was and is full of meaning. Presbyterians have always been a people who want to know what they believe and why they believe what they believe. Here is a short outline of what we believe as a church in critical areas:
We believe in God whom we worship as the Creator of heaven and earth, the Sovereign Lord of creation and of all life. We believe that God is revealed to us in three persons, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. This threefold revelation of God (the doctrine of the Trinity) is important, for it means that God is personal, and we must know God in a personal relationship.
God the Son
We believe the character of God is revealed to us by the Son, in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ. The Lord Jesus Christ, as the God/man, can make reconciliation between God and the human race. Jesus Christ was the fulfillment of the hopes of Israel for a Messiah, so we believe that the Lord Jesus Christ is both our savior, whom we trust, and our Lord, whom we follow as the perfect example of human perfection.
God the Holy Spirit
We believe the Christ is present in the person of the Holy Spirit, who leads us to conviction of sin, to repentance and faith, and to a new life. We believe that the Holy Spirit is God with us. The Holy Spirit brings us new birth, enabling us to live in fellowship with God and with others.
We believe salvation is a gift. Paul’s says, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith-and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God not by works, so that no-one can boast” (Eph. 2:8-9). God’s grace is his love that comes to us in our weakness and at the time of our estrangement as a free and undeserved gift.
We believe God’s grace is available to us through faith in Jesus Christ. We believe faith consists in absolute, humble commitment of our selves to God: mind, body and soul. Faith is “being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see” (Hebrews 11:1).
We believe the church is intended by God as a gathering of his people so that we might worship God, spread the Christian faith, and love and care for one another.
We believe the Lord Jesus Christ began two sacraments (mysteries), by which our faith is nourished by the Holy Spirit. These are: (i) Baptism, a symbol of spiritual renewal which is to be experienced by all who believe in Christ and to their children as members of the household of God and (ii) the Lord’s Supper, a remembrance of Christ’s life, death and coming again in which he is truly present by the power of the Holy Spirit to his people and nurtures their faith.
We believe that God gives a new heart and new spirit to those who find salvation and wholeness in the Lord Jesus Christ. We believe that, as the Word dwells in us, sin looses its hold on believers and we grow in Grace and Christlikeness.
Sovereignty of God
We believe that God is sovereign over his creation and over human history. Yet, God’s power is mysterious, for he created us as free beings and he respects our freedom. As the Apostle Paul puts it, “For the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength” (1 Cor. 1:25). God is sovereign, but he is no dictator. He created us for love and fellowship with him. So, even as he exercises his control over human history, he loves us and respects our freedom even when it causes us and others to suffer.
We believe we can experience the divine life of God, first in this world imperfectly as the people of God, then perfectly in heaven when we are present with Christ. We believe in the second coming of Christ as human history comes to a close and the effects of sin are once and for all removed.