2.01. We believe, teach, and confess the Triune God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
God is the creator and ruler of the universe. He has eternally existed in three persons - The Father, The Son, and the Holy Spirit. These three are co-equal and are one God.
Genesis 1:1, 26, 27; 3:22; Psalm 90:2; Matthew 28:19; 1 Peter 1:2; 2 Corinthians 13:14
2.02. We believe, teach, and confess Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and the gospel as the power of God for the salvation of all who believe in him.
1. Jesus Christ is the Word of God incarnate, through whom everything was made and through whose life, death, and resurrection God fashions a new creation.
2. The proclamation of God's message to us as both law and gospel is the Word of God, revealing judgment and mercy in the person and work of Jesus Christ through whom God was pleased to reconcile all things to himself.
3. The canonical Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments are the Word of God. Inspired by God's Spirit speaking through their authors, they record and announce God's revelation centering in Jesus Christ. Through them God's Spirit speaks to us to create and sustain Christian faith and fellowship for service in the world.
Jesus Christ is the Son of God. He is co-equal with the Father. Jesus lived a sinless human life and offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice for the sins of all men dying on a cross. He arose from the dead after three days to demonstrate His power over sin and death. He ascended to heaven's glory and will return again to earth to reign as King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
Matthew 1:22, 23; Isaiah 9:6; John 1:1-5, 14:10-30; Hebrews 4:14, 15; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4; Romans 1:3, 4; Acts 1:9-11; 1 Timothy 6:14, 15; Titus 2:13
The Holy Spirit is equal with the Father and the Son as God. He is present in the world to make men aware of their need for Jesus Christ. He also lives in all of us from the moment of salvation. He provides us with power for living, understanding of spiritual truth, and guidance in doing what is right. We seek to live under his control daily.
2 Corinthians 3:17; John 16:7-13, 14:16, 17; Acts 1:8; 1 Corinthians 2:12, 3:16; Ephesians 1:13; Galatians 5:25; Ephesians 5:1
2.03. We believe, teach, and accept the canonical Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments as the inspired Word of God and the sole authoritative source and norm of our proclamation, faith, and life.
We believe the Old and New Testaments are the inspired Word of God, inerrant in the original writings, complete as to the revelation of God's will for salvation, and the supreme and final authority in all matters to which they speak.
2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20, 21; 2 Timothy 1:13; Psalm 119:105, 160, 12:6; Proverbs 30:5
We are made in the spiritual image of God, to be like Him in character. We are the supreme object of God's creation. Although humanity has tremendous potential for good we are marred by an attitude of disobedience called, "sin." This attitude separates us from God.
Genesis 1:27; Psalm 8:3-6; Isaiah 53:6a; Romans 3:23; Isaiah 59:1,2
Humanity was created to exist forever. We will either exist eternally separated from God by sin or in union with God through forgiveness and salvation. To be eternally separated from God is hell. To be eternally in union with Him is eternal life. Heaven and hell are places of eternal existence.
John 3:16; 1 John 2:25; 1 John 5:11-13; Romans 6:23; Revelation 20:15; Matthew 25:31-46
Salvation is a free gift from God to humanity. We can never make up for our sin by self-improvement or good works - only by trusting in Jesus Christ as God's offer of forgiveness can we be saved from sin's penalty. Eternal life begins the moment one receives Jesus Christ into his/her life by faith.
Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:8-9; John 14:6, 1:12; Titus 3:5; Galatians 3:26; Romans 5:1
We believe and have experienced that through the sacrament of Baptism, which is commanded by Jesus, God adopts us as His children. Because being part of God's family is entirely His doing and not our own, and because all humans are born with a sinful nature, we affirm the practice of baptizing infants as well as adults.
Romans 6:4-6; Matthew 18:1-6; Acts 2:39; Acts 16:30-33; Colossians 2:12; Acts 2:41; Ephesians 2:8-9; Matthew 28:19-20
We believe that in the sacrament of Holy Communion, God comes to love and forgive us. Through this meal, He brings us His love in a tangible way and renews us in our relationship with Him. As He promised, Jesus is truly present in the bread and wine. Jesus has instructed that we remember Him when we celebrate this meal. As we come to communion, we bring to Jesus our sin with a sincere desire to be forgiven and to be changed to be more like Him.
Matthew 26:26-30; Mark 14:22-26; Luke 22:19-20; John 6:53-56; 1 Corinthians 11:23-29
Creeds and Confessions
2.04. We accept the Apostles', Nicene, and Athanasian Creeds as true declarations of the scriptural faith we believe, teach, and confess.
2.05. We believe, teach, and accept the Unaltered Augsburg Confession and the Small Catechism as true witnesses to the Word of God, normative for our teaching and practice. We acknowledge that we are one in faith and doctrine with all churches that likewise accept the teachings of the Unaltered Augsburg Confession.
2.06. We believe, teach, and confess the other confessional writings in the Book of Concord, namely, the Apology of the Augsburg Confession, the Smalcald Articles, the Treatise, the Large Catechism, and the Formula of Concord, as further valid expositions of the Holy Scriptures.
2.07. We believe, teach, and confess the gospel, recorded in the Holy Scriptures and confessed in the ecumenical creeds and Lutheran confessional writings, as the power of God to create and sustain the priesthood of all believers for God's mission in the world.