Thursday, December 07, 2006

I Believe

As we begin a new year, we are reviewing our belief statement. Here's a draft of mine....

I believe first and foremost that God is, that He created everything that is, and that He sustains the creation by His power.

I believe that God loves all people, that He seeks to commune with them, and that the separation of people from Him causes Him sorrow and grief.

I believe that God sent Jesus to reveal the character of God, to heal Man, and to make a way for Man to return to his original relationship with God which He did by living a faithful life and dying on the cross in submission to God. I believe that Jesus rose from the dead and ascended to Heaven where He mediates between God and Man.

I believe that God remains active in the world through His Spirit who is given to all believers and who transforms Man by working in them and interceding between God and Man.

I believe that Scripture is the divine physical record of God’s revelation of Himself and as such, is the primary guide for Man’s character and way of life.

I believe that salvation is a result of God’s grace, extended to Man through God’s patience and the sending of Jesus.

I believe that salvation is based on faith in Jesus as the Son of God and Savior of the world; that true faith results in repentance, submission to God, and dying to self; that faith, repentance, and baptism combine to effect the restoration of our relationship with God through our belief in His Son.

I believe that all believers are united to one another through a spiritual bond that is real rather than conceptual, and that we are united with all believers, those who have gone before as well as those yet to come, wherever they may be found.

I believe that God wills the healing of creation, and the salvation of Man; that He wills that we develop a love for others, mutually submit to other believers, and that each Christian is to build up the body.

I believe that God’s reconciliation and transformation of Man and of each believer is an on-going work of the Spirit to which we yield, allowing the development of the character of God within us. That same Spirit, given to each believer, serves as a real seal, and empowers us to live as, and be transformed into, likenesses of God.

I believe that the body of believers, the church locally and universally, exists to bless the world by revealing God to others, by healing the brokenness in the world, and ministering to all peoples; by maturing one another in the Faith, and transmitting the Faith through the generations.

I believe our corporate worship is a natural response of grateful, believing hearts to the graciousness and greatness of God. Our gathering together is itself a proclamation of the Gospel and a foretaste of Heaven in the coming together of various peoples united in and by one God. In our communion we reaffirm to one another, and we proclaim to the world, our faith in the love and saving sacrifice of the Son, and we renew our commitment to die to ourselves and submit ourselves to God.

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