What We Believe
We hold to the historical beliefs of Christianity, standing in a long tradition of churches that affirm the Apostles Creed and the Nicene Creed. Unique to our community and our emphasis on story is the following narrative of beliefs. This is the story found in the Old and New Testaments, which we believe were inspired by God as an account of God’s activity in history:
We believe in a Creator God who is the ultimate reality. Before the creation, God existed in a community of three that included the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Through the Son, God spoke the created world into existence. God’s good and relational nature was passed along to humanity, who were created in God’s image. No other being, whether angels or animals, can make the same claim. God’s desire for humanity was to have a relationship with us.
God offered man a true and full life in this good creation, but humans rejected it. After being deceived, humankind chose to follow their own way, rather than choose the life God had offered. This caused man to fall from intimacy with God, and all of creation’s relationship with God became fractured.
Though broken hearted over this schism, God worked to again initiate a relationship with humanity. God called Abraham and Sarah to begin this work. God promised them that through their offspring, the Hebrews, all the peoples of the earth would be blessed. In time, the Hebrews became slaves in Egypt, where they cried to God. God heard their cry and remembered the promise that had been made to Abraham and Sarah. After liberating the Hebrews, God established a covenant relationship with them, offering blessing to them as they followed the Torah, a set of laws or guidelines on how to live. But though the law was meant for good, it became a burden as some tried to prove themselves more righteous than others. Through one of Abraham’s descendants, Jesus, God offered the means to repair the broken relationship with humans. Jesus was God’s son, fully human and fully God. He lived a perfect, sinless life, to offer a view for humans of the way that God had designed us to live. Jesus proclaimed this way of life to be the kingdom of God, and invited humanity to live in this way. Jesus was killed through crucifixion. This was not only a gruesome execution, but also God’s offering of self as a final sacrifice to mend this broken relationship with humans. Three days after he was killed, Jesus rose from the dead (also known as resurrection) as a testimony that he offered power over sin and death.
Forty days after his resurrection, Jesus left the earth to be with the Father in heaven. But he did not leave us alone. He promised that he would send the Spirit to come and continue to show us how to live in the way of Jesus. For those who are followers of Jesus, the Spirit affirms us as children of God, empowers with gifts, convicts, guides, comforts, counsels, and leads us into truth through a communal life of worship and a missional expression of our faith. When the Spirit came, the church began, and it continues today to extend the kingdom of God on earth. The church is a global and local expression of living out the way of Jesus through love, sacrifice, and healing as we embody the resurrected Christ, who lives in and through us, to a broken and hurting world. We labor to restore relationships between God and humans, and among humans. We hold firmly to the belief that the way of Jesus is the best way to live and it is open to anyone who desires it. As a sign of commitment to living in the way of Jesus, we remember the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus through water baptism. But even as we labor for the kingdom of God, we know it is not yet complete. We look forward to the day when Jesus will return, and God will fully and completely restore things to the way they were meant to be. God will dwell with us here in a restored creation. Our relationships with God, others, ourselves, and creation will be whole. All will flourish as God intends. This is what we long for. This is what we hope for. And we have given our lives to living out that future reality now.