“In essential beliefs we have unity, in non-essential beliefs we have liberty, and in all beliefs we have charity" - John Wesley, Founder to the Methodist movement
God is the Creator and Ruler of the universe. He exists eternally in three personalities: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. God is both holy and loving. These three are co-equal and are one God. (Genesis 1:1,26,27; 3:22, Psalm 90:2, Matthew 28:19, I Peter 1:2, II Corinthians 13:14)
Jesus Christ is the unique Son of God. He is co-equal with the Father. Jesus lived a sinless human life and offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice for the sins of all humanity by dying on a cross. He arose from the dead after three days to demonstrate His power over sin and death. He ascended to Heaven's glory and will return again to reign as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. (Matthew 1:22-23, Isaiah 9:6, John 1:1-5; 14:10-30, Hebrews 4:14-15, I Corinthians 15:3-4, Romans 1:3-4, Acts 1:9-11, I Timothy 6:14-15, Titus 2:13)
The Holy Spirit is present in the world to make people aware of their need for Jesus Christ. When we receive Jesus as the Lord of our lives and the Savior and forgiver of our sins, the Holy Spirit comes to live within us. He provides us with power for living, enables us to understand spiritual truth, and guides us in doing what pleases God. As Christians we seek to live under his control daily. (II Corinthians 3:17, John 16:7-13; 14:16-17, Acts 1:8, I Corinthians 2:12; 3:16, Ephesians 1:13, Galatians 5:25, Ephesians 5:18)
The Bible is God’s word written by human authors under the supernatural guidance of the Holy Spirit. It is the final authority for determining our Christian beliefs and how we are to live. (II Timothy 3:16-17, II Peter 1:20-21, II Timothy 1:13, Psalm 119:105,160, Psalm 12:6, Proverbs 30:5)
People are made in the spiritual image of God - we are rational and moral beings. Because we are God’s creation made in God’s image, each person possesses great self-worth. Although every person has tremendous potential for good, all of us are marred by an attitude of self-centeredness which the Bible calls “sin”. This attitude and its resultant actions separate us from God, others, and ourselves.
Becoming right with God and having our relationship with God restored is what the Bible calls salvation. Salvation is God’s free gift to us. We can never earn it or achieve it by self-improvement or good works. We accept God’s gift of a new life when we turn from our self-ruled life and accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior. The new life that God gives us is an abundant life in this world and eternal life in the world to come. (Romans 6:23, Ephesians 2:8-9, John 14:6; 1:12, Titus 3:5, Galatians 3:26, Romans 5:1)
THE KIND OF LIFE WE ARE CALLED TO LIVE
Though we are not made right with God by our own goodness, “good works” are not optional for the Christian life. When we give our lives to Christ, it is expected that we will grow towards loving God with all our being and our neighbors as ourselves.
Humanity was created to exist forever. We will either exist eternally separated from God by sin, or in union with God, through forgiveness and salvation. When you die, you will either spend eternity in Heaven or Hell. Eternal separation from God happens in Hell. Eternal union with God occurs in Heaven. (John 3:16, I John 2:25; 5:11-13, Romans 6:23, Revelation 20:15)
Baptism is our initiation into the church and our identification as children of God. God initiates this relationship and chooses us as daughters and sons, beginning our life-long journey of faith. God’s choice happens regardless of our age or our response. Those that are baptized as children must make the choice to confirm their belief in Christ to continue as members of the church.
Communion is an opportunity for us to renew our relationship with Jesus Christ. On His last night before His death, Jesus ate a special meal with His disciples. He charged his church with repeating this meal to remember His sacrifice and celebrate our new life through His death and resurrection. God offers this relationship to everyone, so all who desire to receive are welcome to participate.