The following consists of our family’s statement of faith:
We believe in one God in three Persons – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (Matt. 28:19; John 10:30; Phil. 2:6)
We believe that Jesus Christ is the only begotten Son of God, that he lived a sinless life, that he died on the cross for our sins, was buried, and raised to life on the third day (John 3:16; Heb. 4:15; 1 Cor. 15:3-4).
We believe that we are saved by grace through faith in Christ, and that through his death and resurrection, those who have faith in him are reconciled with God, holding the hope of eternal, resurrected life. (John 14:6; Eph. 2:8-10; 2 Cor. 5:17-21)
We believe that baptism is an expression of faith which symbolizes our solidarity with the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. Baptism is “an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus,” and is the point at which one comes to be “in Christ.” (Acts 2:37-38; Rom. 6:3-4; Gal. 3:26-27; 1 Pet. 3:21)
We believe the Holy Spirit indwells Christians, sealing us for the day of redemption, and working in us to produce fruit that pleases God. (Gal. 5:16-26; Eph. 1:13-14; Phil. 2:13)
We believe that the Bible is the inspired, infallible, and authoritative word of God, which reveals to man how to walk righteously before God and to be equipped for every good work. (2 Tim. 3:16-17; Psalm 119:105)
Of course, there are a number of other important doctrines we hold to, but we cannot list every single point here. We recognize that there are going to be differences of opinion between faithful Christians on certain points. The core elements of our faith – that Jesus Christ died for our sins, was buried, and was raised on the third day – make up those things of “first importance.” (1 Cor. 15:3) The core elements of the faith which comprise the gospel are non-negotiable, as our connection to Christ hinges on our fidelity to these (Gal. 1:9). It is important that we stand firm on the truth of God’s word, and call sin for what it is (Eph. 4:17-25). However, on peripheral doctrines where honest questions exist, we believe it is important to extend grace and to “bear with one another” in love. We do not wish to take part in divisive quarrels which lead to discord and strife within God’s church (2 Tim. 2:14ff). We must be actively seeking to grow in knowledge of God’s truth (2 Pet. 1:5), but this is an exercise best done together with fellow believers, as we seek to grow and mature together (Eph. 2:19-22). It should not be done in arrogance or anger, but in humility and love. As Paul wrote, “Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace.” (Col. 3:14-15)