What We Believe

At the Heart of it All

Lutheran Christians want to be connected in the beliefs and practices of the early New Testament church. The three major foundations of Christian belief continue to be...
  1. the essential teachings of the Triune God—Father, Son and Holy Spirit—which were clearly taught by Jesus’ disciples;
  2. the continued practice of the Ten Commandments, which shows that we are believers through the same covenant as God’s people before Christ came in the flesh; and
  3. the continued prayer to our Father that Jesus taught his disciples.

With this foundation of faith, we also confess and practice the outward “marks of the church” by which we receive the gifts of forgiveness, faith, and the promise of eternal life. All three are given and established for ongoing practice by Jesus: Holy Baptism (Matthew 28:18-20), the Lord’s Supper (Luke 22:14-20), and the Gift of Forgiveness (John 20:21-23).

 

Basic Beliefs about God

In worship we confess the Apostles’ Creed, which is a summary of what the original disciples believed and taught. Although its final form took shape in the 4th century, the New Testament itself affirms these teachings as an accurate portrayal of God’s gift of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ.

I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth.

And in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried. He descended into hell. The third day he rose again from the dead. He ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty. From thence he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit; the holy Christian Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.

The Ten Commandments

Christians are called to memorize and live by the commands of the Lord.  They are His gracious boundaries that help guide us when tempted, and give order to our society and our Christian life.

  1. You shall have no other gods.
  2. You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain. 
  3. Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.
  4. Honor your father and your mother.
  5. You shall not murder.
  6. You shall not commit adultery.
  7. You shall not steal.
  8. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
  9. You shall not covet your neighbor’s house.
  10. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his manservant or maidservant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.

Note: The numbering of the commands is not significant to our salvation—as they are given unnumbered and merely described by God’s Word as the “ten words.” Israelite and Jewish tradition actually began with the prologue (I am the Lord your God) as the first word, and the second was “no other gods.”  The majority of Christians worldwide use the historic, traditional numbering from the early Church described above. The original text is found in Exodus 20 and Deuteronomy 5.

nullThe Lord’s Prayer

Jesus taught His disciples how to pray, and so we continue to use His prayer as a living source of strength and hope:

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name, Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen.

 

Keeping the Faith

Our preaching and teaching is based on a Christ-centered, Scripture-only method of interpretation.  We follow traditional understandings of the Old Testament, that it is inspired by God and points to the coming Messiah.  As we interpret the New Testament we believe its writings are inspired by God, and tells the good news that our Messiah has come bearing eternal salvation, forgivness of sins, and new life for all who trust in Him.

As you review the items below, each section will describe our philosophy for living for Christ day-by-day, while being careful students of God's Word.

How to study the Bible shows several general principles that are important for reading Scripture in its context.

How to live in Christ describes our faith practices that keep us rooted in Christ, built up in Him, and overflowing with thankfulness (Colossians 2:6-7).

How a healthy church functions will share our Five-Fold Vision for providing a balanced ministry setting.

 

How to study the Bible

The study of Scripture is not to be taken lightly. Those who teach in God’s name are called to the highest standard, for hearers receive their words as the very words of God. Thus, our pastors learn strict “hermeneutical principles” for interpreting the Bible. It includes,

  1. The entire Bible is true, Old and New Testaments, as inspired by the Holy Spirit;
  2. Scripture interprets Scripture;
  3. The Old Testament is to be read through the perspective of the New Testament, which declares its promises fulfilled;
  4. Christ is the central teaching of both testaments, for salvation for all people has always been through God’s redemptive gift of His only-begotten Son;
  5. Clear passages help us understand unclear passages;
  6. Original languages are essential to properly interpret Scripture, due to cultural and translator bias;

 

How to live in Christ

A passive Christian life? How could we “hide the light” or “bury the treasure” that God loves us and has made us His unique people in the world? Once Jesus comes through the gift of the Holy Spirit, our lives are permeated with new thoughts, tasks, and goals. As Scripture says, “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has gone, the new has come,” 1 Corinthians 5:17.

Personal prayer. We are called to an active prayer life. Time set aside each day for silence, for reading God’s Word and praying it back to Him, and corporate prayer in Bible Studies and worship with other believers are all necessary to feed our prayer life.

Family makes God a priority. Many examples in Scripture show that when one person believes in Jesus as Lord, the entire family is brought to faith. We are called to raise our children in the Lord’s ways, to have faith in Him as our Maker and Redeemer, and to put God’s Word in their hearts through memorization, singing hymns and spiritual songs, and teaching the narrative accounts of God’s people of the past.

Challenge to live in holiness. What to do when you’ve sinned outwardly, on purpose, and are stricken with guilt? Ask the Lord’s forgiveness, repent of the sin, and pray for the Holy Spirit to help you in times of temptation. While we will never be rid of sinful desires because Satan tempts us, we know and believe that Christ is in us and with us. He empowers us to identify and decline the bad and destructive ways of this world, and instead yield to obey and do the will of our Father.

Mission to tell & serve. When the man in Scripture was free of his demons, he couldn’t keep silent. When the woman at the well was offered eternal life, she couldn’t keep silent about the man she met (Jesus) and told her family and friends that He is Messiah. We too are called to bear witness to Christ and give our testimony of faith—that HE is faithful when we are blessed, in our suffering, and in our carrying out the mission He has entrusted to us.

 

How a healthy Church functions

Ours is a five-fold vision consistent with the early church, in which believers worship, learn, gather, witness, and serve.

Worship feeds and shapes. We gather in worship often, and the object of worship matters. A creed is spoken to preserve the Christian faith from false teachings. Hymns and songs point to Jesus’ life, death, resurrection, and rule over the whole Christian church.

Interact with God’s Word. We nurture the faith begun in Baptism, where the Holy Spirit came upon us as an act of God’s grace. From the time children are little we teach them about the Good Shepherd Jesus, and all through adult years we provide sound Biblical teaching.

Fellowship with others. We plan a variety of fellowship events where we spend time playing, talking, eating, and celebrating what we have done together in the Name of the Lord.

Witness about God’s love. We bear witness to Jesus as the source of hope for friends you bring to church so they can hear the Gospel, for those struggling with life, for those deceived by different religions and distractions.

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