WE BELIEVE in one eternal, holy, and loving God who calls us to respond in faith. We, therefore,
give the following testimony of our faith, realizing that for testimonies of faith to be Christian
they must conform to God’s revelation in the Holy Scriptures. Although we can never put into a
short document all that we are taught in the Bible, we do affirm the following.
God is revealed generally in the created order and in the human conscience. This Living God,
however, has spoken especially to us in the covenantal story of the whole of Scripture and
definitively in Jesus Christ.
We believe in, treasure, and cherish the Bible as the written Word of God, and hold that the
sixty-six books of the Protestant biblical canon constitute the Holy Scriptures. We believe that
both the Old and New Testaments are necessary for understanding God’s revelation in
Scripture, both of which are to be interpreted in light of the revelation given to us in Jesus
Christ. The Bible is inspired by God, and is fully authoritative and sufficient for Christian life and
practice. We further believe that the Bible is historically reliable, and that its message is
faithfully preserved in the textual tradition.
We believe in one God in three persons — Father, Son and Holy Spirit — who created all things
visible and invisible, and out of chaos created order. Our hearts are made glad that God is fully
revealed in the Lord Jesus Christ, the incarnate Son of God, who was born to the Virgin Mary
through the agency of the Holy Spirit, and lived on earth as both fully human and fully divine.
We are grateful that the Holy Spirit leads us into all truth, convicts us of sin, leads us to and
incorporates us into Christ, and empowers us for Christian witness.
SIN AND SALVATION
We acknowledge that all have sinned, thus breaking our relationships with God, self, others and
the whole created order, but give thanks for God’s salvation from sin.
We believe that, through his exemplary life, sacrificial death, and bodily resurrection, Jesus
Christ is the only sufficient atonement for our sins. In keeping with the messianic prophecies of
the Old Testament, Jesus died on the cross and was raised for our salvation. He returned to the
Father and there inter- cedes for us. God’s work of salvation is all by grace, not by our merits.
We receive this great salvation when, by the convicting power of the Holy Spirit, we repent of
our sin and believe in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. We hold that we are secure in our
salvation so long as we remain faithful to Christ. We are grateful that the same power that
raised Christ from the dead raises us from spiritual death, saving us from sin to follow Christ in
this life and to live with him eternally.
We believe that it is God’s will for us to live in holiness. Indeed, it is God who makes us holy.
We, however, are called to present ourselves as living sacrifices, holy and accept- able to God
for the sake of God’s mission in the world. We understand the life of holiness to be
wholehearted love for God and neigh- bor. Although we are never to seek suffering for the sake
of suffering, we are convinced that holiness often is deepened through life’s inevitable
sufferings. Furthermore, Christ invites us to participate in his sufferings in this fallen world.
We recognize with Scripture that Satan and demons exist as spiritual realities in opposition to
God. But we are grateful that God has conquered all sin and evil, thereby giving us victory both
now and forever.
THE KINGDOM OF GOD
With gratitude we believe that we experience the Reign of God as the presence, love, and
power of God in our lives, in the church, in history, and in the whole created order, now and in
the future consummation.
We believe that Jesus lived and pro- claimed the Reign of God, a life of reconciliation and
peacemaking in fulfillment of the Law and Prophets. Under the Reign of God, we are required
to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with God.
We believe that God comes alongside the vulnerable and oppressed, and stands against every
form of evil, even when found in the institutional church. As the people of God, we too are
called to make justice and to intervene when injustice occurs.
We anticipate the future consummation of the Reign of God, at the time of the one and only
return of our Lord, who will carry out final judgment separating the righteous and the
We believe the church is the fellowship of the redeemed, the body of Christ, the people of God,
chosen by God for mission in the world.
At the beginning of time God created humankind to be partners in mission. However,
humankind failed in this partnership. In the course of time, though, God chose Israel to bless all
peoples. But in the fullness of time it was in Jesus Christ that God brought salvation for all
people. And until the end of time God has chosen the church to be the body of Christ with the
mission of making disciples. It is for this purpose that God continually reforms the church so
that it will be conformed to the image of Christ.
We are grateful that in fulfillment of Jesus’ promise, God poured out the Holy Spirit on the day
of Pentecost. We believe that the evidence of this outpouring is the personal holiness of God’s
people and their empowerment for divine mission in the world. The Holy Spirit distributes a
variety of spiritual gifts among all members of the church for accomplishing this mission.
We believe God calls all people to respond in faith to the gospel of Jesus Christ, whereby they
become members of the universal church of God. With Christ as the head, this community is
the body of Christ on earth. We understand each local congregation to be an expression of this
universal church, and that it is God’s will for each believer to be a committed member of a local
In obedience to our Lord, we baptize believers by immersion as a sign of death to sin,
resurrection to new life in Christ, and incorporation into the mission of the people of God. We
celebrate the Lord’s Supper as participation in and proclamation of the death and resurrection
of our Lord until he comes. We wash each other’s feet, following Jesus who assumed the role of
servant by washing the feet of his disciples. We anoint with oil in the name of the Lord and pray
that people may be healed.
We believe that all who repent and confess Jesus Christ as their personal Savior and Lord are
part of the church of God. We seek mutually enriching fellowship with all who share this
personal faith. Aware of racial, cultural, and other diversity around the globe, we are
committed to working for the visible unity of the one church that is rooted in biblical faith.
Our Lord empowers believers to do the work of ministry. Jesus instructed us to model our
ministries and manner of leadership after his example of being a servant rather than seeking
positions of power. We understand that it is the church’s responsibility, in response to God’s
call, to appoint and equip gifted women and men to a variety of leader- ship responsibilities for
building up the body of Christ.
In devotion to Christ as the head of the church, we desire to be a biblical people, a people who
worship the triune God, a people transformed by the grace of God, a people of the Kingdom of
God, a people committed to building up the one, universal church of God, and a people who in
God’s love care for the whole world.
(Taken from the pamphlet, “We Believe”, 2003, Anderson University School of Theology)