BELIEFS

What we believe shapes how we live. Beliefs aren't just abstract ideas about things we can't see. They form a story that gives meaning to life for people and communities. Because our stories are so important for how we live, we have framed our central beliefs within the framework of a story that gives meaning and shapes how we understand our identity and purpose.  
 
The Story: The Author 
We believe God exists.  
He has spoken authoritatively and reliably through His written word, the Old and New Testaments, which we believe to be without error and wholly reliable for faith and life. 
We can know God personally because He has revealed Himself in and through Jesus the Messiah and Spirit inspired Word.
 
The Characters: God & People
We believe the Bible tells us the true story of God and humanity.
God is relational and exists as a Trinity, one God in three persons: Father, Son and Spirit. This means God exists as an eternal community of love.
God created the world and people in order to share His loving goodness. 
People are made with inherent value because they are created in God’s own image to relate to Him and others, and to reflect his character and purpose through the way we live.  
People are made to relate to God, each other, and the world in relationships of peace, righteousness, justice, and love.
 
The Conflict: Sin & it's Results
We believe, although people were made to image and reflect God, sin has broken, distorted, and alienated us from Him, ourselves, and each other.  
Sin is violence against the peace and harmony that God intended for His creation.
At its core, sin is the choice of people to reject God as God and instead lift up and exalt someone, or something else in His rightful place. 
Sin has utterly damaged people, relationships, and all creation, leaving humans guilty, shameful, defiled, and fearful.
 
The Savior: Jesus & God’s Mission
We believe God has redeemed the world through the work of His Son, Jesus Christ. 
Jesus is God become human. He is fully human and fully God. 
He is the King promised in the Old Testament who came to bring God’s kingdom rule to set the world right. 
He is the Prophet promised to speak God’s good news for the world. 
He is the Priest who mediates a new relationship between God and people. 
 
The Center: Jesus & Salvation
God sent Jesus to deal with the problem of sin once and for all through his death on the cross, His resurrection, ascension and sending of the Holy Spirit. 
His redemptive death was in our place and for our benefit; achieving forgiveness of sin, acceptance with God and triumph over death and spiritual darkness. 
We enter into the kingdom through faith, which means trusting Jesus and His work and turning from a life of sin ruled by ourselves.
Salvation is a gift from God, is given by God’s grace, and is received only by faith.
 
The Gift: Holy Spirit & New Life
All who embrace Jesus by faith, turning to Him in believing obedience are made into new creations, participants in eternal life.
The Spirit gives us a new heart, with new desires and capacities, that reflects God’s character and purposes in the world. 
The Spirit indwells and empowers believers to live a life of obedience and partnership with God, to embody and reflect His kingdom. 
New life, empowered by the Spirit, is lived in Christ, and conveys a new identity as children of God. It enables people to live a righteous life and share in God’s mission to bless the world.
 
The Resolution: The Church & The Future
The church is the sign, foretaste, and instrument of God’s kingdom. 
The church is the physical presence of Christ on earth.  We are a family, the people of God, and the temple of the Holy Spirit, and a means of grace in the world.  
Jesus will return.  For those in God’s kingdom there will be a resurrection of the dead to eternal life, but those who reject God’s grace will remain separated from Him. 
Creation will reach its fulfillment when He returns and all things will be made new, and the earth becomes God’s home where people will  live in perfect community with God and each other.  
There is hope for the future because of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection. 



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