Friday, July 22, 2011

Ember Church: Statement of Faith

What is right belief? Some say it is subjective, entirely up to the conscience and experience of the individual. Others say it is revealed by God in Scripture. Still others say there is no way to know for certain.

This is not our official logo, but uses the elements of it.
Maybe someday we'll put this on a t-shirt. Or maybe not.
Right beliefs have taken a front seat in Evangelical circles this year. Rob Bell's book, Love Wins, lit a firestorm in the neoReformed community for it's questions about universalism. More recently, Campus Crusade for Christ has come under fire for changing it's name to Cru, an unofficial title that has been used on campuses for years but that, as many are pointing out, no longer contains the world "Christ". (For the record, I didn't love Love Wins and I think Cru's name change is appropriate.)

As we sat down to formulate a statement of faith for Ember Church, we had to sort through what was essential belief, what was nonessential, and what was inconsequential. This is not an easy discussion, as many people hold certain beliefs as essential that others deem inconsequential. We surveyed the statements of faith from many churches so that we could see what others have deemed essential. In the end, we settled on a statement of faith that, in our estimation, accurately reflected historic, orthodox, Protestant, evangelical doctrine.

Statement of Faith

We believe in one holy and humble Creator God who eternally exists in three fully divine and good persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

We believe God created human beings, both male and female, in his image, and therefore every human being has infinite intrinsic value.

We believe that humans rebelled against God in a vain and arrogant attempt to supplant him. This rebellion brought sin, evil and death into what had been a perfect world; all human beings are now born into sin, separated from God, with no hope of atoning for their sin or healing their broken relationship with God on their own.

We believe that, in order to once and for all deal with sin, evil and death, God sent his son Jesus Christ to us. He was born of a virgin, lived a sinless life, performed many signs and miracles, suffered death on a Roman cross, and rose again from the dead three days later. Jesus’ death made atonement for the sins of all humanity, and in his resurrection he defeated death and the powers of evil. He has ascended to the right hand of God the Father.

We believe that all who put their faith in Jesus Christ, humbling themselves in repentance of sin and forsaking all other means of salvation, will be saved.

We believe that God sovereignly provided human beings with the sixty-six books of the Protestant Canon as his written revelation, and that these books are authoritative for all Christians, infallible in all matters of faith and practice.

We believe that the Church is comprised of all who put their faith in Jesus Christ, and that God is active in the world through the Church, empowering individual believers and local communities of believers to fulfill his mission of making disciples through the transformative presence of the Holy Spirit.

We believe that Jesus Christ is coming again as King and Judge; all who cry out to him by faith will live with him forever, and all who reject him will experience eternal separation from God.

1 comment:

Corey said...

Eternal separation? I thought you read Rob Bell's book?!?

I kid. Sounds good! Super excited for y'all!