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What We Believe

DO THOSE WHO DON’T SHARE OUR VIEWS on God, morality, and public policy enjoy being around us?

Or has the tension of moral politics come between us?

If so, here’s a question. Is it possible to remain faithful to our own beliefs while fighting for the right of others to disagree with us?

My guess is that most of us would vote to protect a person’s right to be a Buddhist, Muslim, or atheist American. Yet, who would deny that voting to protect a person’s right to reject Christ is as serious as the public policy issues that are dividing us?

Is it possible that some of us have lost track of what we really believe? In an attempt to clarify our own beliefs, let’s see how far we can go together in the following statement of faith:

While admitting we have no way of understanding where God came from, or why He would exist without beginning or end, we believe we see in and around us evidence of a cause

  • powerful enough to have created the cosmos.
  • personal enough to be the source of human personality.
  • timeless enough to explain the age marks of the universe.

While seeing that life is marked not only by design, but also by chaos, we believe we must come to terms with our sense that

  • something has gone wrong with the world.
  • life is unfair.
  • our mortality stalks us.

While agreeing that the Bible leaves many questions unanswered, we believe the most published book in the world

  • tells a story that resonates with life as we know it.
  • explains our past.
  • gives us hope for tomorrow.

We believe the two testaments of the Bible point forward and backward to One who

  • came at the time calculated by Daniel the prophet.
  • was born in the place predicted by the prophet Micah.
  • died in the manner anticipated by Isaiah and Zechariah.

We believe this long-anticipated Messiah and miracle worker fulfilled the holidays of Israel and bought our rescue by His

  • execution on the Jewish feast of Passover.
  • burial on the Jewish feast of Unleavened Bread.
  • resurrection on the Jewish feast of First Fruits.

While acknowledging that the small nation into which He was born has been a longstanding focus of international conflict, we believe the Messiah of Israel will one day bring peace to the world when He

  • returns in power.
  • turns weapons of war into tools of agriculture.
  • laments the loss of those who refused to accept His offer of mercy.

While believing that Christ will change the world at some unannounced time in the future, we believe He wants to change our lives now as we

  • discover how much He has done for us.
  • invite Him to reign in the kingdom of our hearts.
  • reflect by His Spirit the attitudes of Christ.

While Christ warned His followers to expect rejection, we believe it is important to remember that our Lord was loved by sinners and hated by religious

  • conservatives who defended law at the expense of grace.
  • liberals who defended grace at the expense of truth.
  • nationalists who wanted political power rather than a spiritual mission.

While acknowledging that followers of Christ are to have a special love for one another, we believe we are also distinguished by

  • loving our enemies.
  • blessing those who curse us.
  • praying for and doing good to those who hate us.

While acknowledging that it is not up to us to control others or to impose our beliefs upon them, we believe it is our mission to

  • make the life-changing wisdom of the Bible understandable and accessible to all.
  • help people all over the world have the chance to discover a personal relationship with Christ, grow to be more like Him, and become actively involved in His mission of rescue.

 Father in heaven, please forgive us for leaving others with the impression that we think we are better than they are, or that we would like to impose our values on them, or that we want them to live by our faith rather than by their own better judgment. Please help us to make it clear that our calling is to love and inform, not to condemn or control.

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