The elders affirm our “core beliefs” as a guide for future kingdom work. These have been and will continue to be our core theological convictions:
There is only one God. God is not limited in any way by creation or our ideas about God. God rules over all creation in love, justice, and wisdom. (Genesis 1:1-31)
Everything that exists was designed and created by God to be cared for and enjoyed. God has a plan for what He has created and will accomplish God's purposes in the end. (Psalm 8:1-9)
Humans are created in the image of God so that we can have a personal and communal relationship with God. This image gives dignity and enables us to love. It also sets us above and makes us responsible for the non-human creation. (Genesis 1: 26-31)
The history of sin, death, evil, suffering and pain began by rebellion against God and can only be undone by the justice of God. (Romans 1:16-32) Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection are the primary means by which God deals with sin, evil, death, suffering, and pain.
God has communicated clearly through creation, through Jesus Christ, and through the Bible. The Bible is our authoritative standard for all matters of faith and life as it clearly points us to the mystery and power of Jesus. (Colossians 1:15-20; Hebrews 1; 1-4; 2 Timothy 3:16-17)
Though God is one, God is presented in three persons (Father, Son and Spirit)—the Trinity. As “Father,” God reigns on high, pursues righteous purposes, and will ultimately act as gracious judge of all creation. (Luke 3:21-22; Revelation 20-22)
Jesus Christ, the Son, is completely God and became a complete human being. His life revealed God to us. His death exemplifies the love of God which redeemed the original rebellion and the evil that followed. His resurrection overcame the power of death and gave us life with God after death. Jesus is now with the Father and personally intercedes on our behalf. (John 1:1-18; Hebrews 2:14-15; 1 Corinthians 15:20-28)
The Holy Spirit is completely God and does the work of the Father and Son. The Spirit teaches, gives gifts, and transforms us into God’s image. The Spirit empowers us to accomplish the will of God on earth as it is in heaven. (John 14-16; Romans 8:18-39)
Salvation is by God’s grace, through Christ’s cross and resurrection, and a result of the Spirit’s active work. It is received through faith. It is sealed in confession and baptism. It is demonstrated in a life apprenticed to the lordship of Jesus. (Philippians 2:1-11; Mark 10:35-45)
There is one Church. She is the community of people who have trusted in Jesus to make them right with God and to send the Holy Spirit to make them more like God. The church is a “commissioned people,” serving God to accomplish God's purposes in this world.(1 Corinthians 6:19-20; Ephesians 4:2-6). Therefore we believe in the Great commission (Matthew 28:16-20).
God has given the church special ways in which we can draw close to God personally and enjoy God's blessings. These include baptism, prayer, worship, preaching, sharing the Gospel, Communion, Bible study, serving the poor and vulnerable, spiritual gifts, fasting, and relationships. (Ephesians 4:11-16).
Jesus will return to finally overthrow evil and death forever and to set up a new heaven and a new earth where we can be with Jesus forever. God will rule over everything. (Matthew 19:28-30; Romans 8:22-24; Revelation 21-22)