Doctrinal AffirmationsOver the past 2000 years followers of Jesus Christ have expressed the central claims of their faith in various ways. We stand in this tradition alongside those who have gone before us and those who will continue after us. We confess historic, orthodox Christian belief as expressed in the Nicene Creed (381 A.D.) and the Apostles’ Creed (6th century A.D.)*. It is important to note that doctrinal statements and affirmations are never a substitute for the Word of God. Our doctrinal expressions are simply a tool inviting us to go deeper into God’s Word. We believe the best way to come to understand and be transformed by God’s redemptive story is to delve deep into the Holy Scriptures with a community of people seeking to live out the way of Jesus.
The BibleWe believe the Bible to be God’s revealed and true story of the world. The Bible is the Word of God—inspired by the Holy Spirit and written by numerous faithful people over many years. Our community submits to the authority of God entrusted through these scriptures which are preserved in the 66 canonical books of the Old and New Testaments. We believe God calls us to immerse ourselves individually and corporately in these scriptures in order to faithfully live out God’s story here and now by the power and leading of the Holy Spirit
We have found it helpful to frame the Bible from Genesis to Revelation in six major chapters: Creation, Curse, Covenant, Christ, Church, and Consummation.
[verses: Scripture inspired by God: 2 Tim. 3:16; Heb. 4:12; 1 Cor. 2:13; 2 Pet. 1:20-21; Jesus the incarnate Word of God: Gen. 1:3; John 1; Col. 1:15-20; Heb 1:1-3]
CreationGod, revealed as YHWH (Yahweh) in the Holy Scriptures, created all things good. God exists eternally as one God in three Persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit, expressed historically as the Trinity. YHWH created human beings in His own image. He created them to live in fellowship with Him, themselves, others, and creation. Therefore, we are fundamentally relational beings created by God to live in shalom. The Hebrew word shalom means wholeness and peace. God entrusted humankind as his image bearers to steward and lovingly rule over His good creation. God’s vocation for humanity then and now is to reflect what He is like to each other and the world.
[verses: Nature of God: Gen. 1:1; Psa. 90:2; Psa. 96:5; Psa. 118:29; Isa. 6:3; Isa. 46:9; John 1:18; 1 Tim. 1:17; 1 John 1:5; 1 John 4:8; God as Triune: Gen. 1:1,26; Deut. 6:4; Matthew 28:19; John 1:1,2; John 4:24; Acts 5:3,4; Romans 1:20; Ephesians 4:5-6; 1 Cor. 8:6; 2 Cor. 13:14; 1 Pet. 1:2; Creation is created good: Gen. 1:31; Humans created in God’s image: Gen. 1:26-27; Gen. 2:7; Psa. 8; Humans given authority to steward God’s creation: Gen. 1:28-29; Gen. 2:15; Psa. 115:16]
CurseHowever, believing equality with God was something to be grasped, the first man and woman, tempted by evil, rebelled against God. By this they brought sin into the world and handed their God given authority over to the accuser, Satan. The law of death, rather than God’s rule of life, enslaved all of creation. The resulting curse of death’s rule manifests itself in distorted and broken relationships with God, ourselves, others, and creation. Each of us has been born into a world mastered by death and pitted against the will of the good Creator God. Shalom has been lost and we continue to rebel against God.
[verses: Human rebellion against God: Gen. 3-11; Isa. 64:6; Rom. 1: Rom. 3:23-25; Rom. 5:12-21; Rom. 6:23; All creation is enslaved to death: Rom. 8:19-22; 1 Cor. 15:22; Heb 9:27]