What We Believe
What is Lutheran?
Our congregation accepts and preaches the Bible-based teachings of Martin Luther that inspired the reformation of the Christian Church in the 16th century. The teaching of Luther and the reformers can be summarized in three phrases: Grace alone, Faith alone, Scripture alone.
Grace Alone: God loves the people of the world, even though they are sinful, rebel against Him and do not deserve His love. He sent Jesus, His Son, to love the unlovable and save the ungodly.
Faith Alone: By His suffering and death as the substitute for all people of all time, Jesus purchased and won forgiveness and eternal life for them. Those who hear this Good News and believe it have the eternal life that it offers. God creates faith in Christ and gives people forgiveness through Him.
Scripture Alone: The Bible is God’s inerrant and infallible Word, in which He reveals His Law and His Gospel of salvation in Jesus Christ. It is the sole rule and norm for Christian doctrine.
Who do we say God is?
Lutherans believe and teach the divine mystery, that God is Three in One, that is – Triune. Three distinct persons: FATHER, creator of all that exists; Jesus Christ, the SON, who became human to suffer and die for the sins of all humanity and to rise to life again in the ultimate victory over death and the Devil; and HOLY SPIRIT, who creates faith through God’s Word and Sacraments. The three persons of the Trinity are coequal and coeternal. Together, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are ONE God.
Law and Gospel
The Bible teaches that we are separated from God when we think, say, or do things that are against His will. That’s called sin. No matter how good we try to be, no one meets God’s demand that we be perfect. No one can be “good enough” to go to heaven. That’s the “bad news”. God’s Law shows us our sin and our need for a Savior.
God saw that we had a problem and decided to do something about it. His only Son, Jesus Christ, became a man and perfectly followed God’s will. He, then, allowed Himself to be crucified. He died and was buried. On the third day He rose from the dead! The Bible tells us that Jesus took our punishment for sin, and gives us the free gift of eternal life. We are perfect—not because of our own actions, but because the blood of Jesus continually washes us clean. The Gospel or “Good News” is that we are saved by the grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ His Son.
Holy Baptism is the applying of water (by pouring, sprinkling, immersion, etc.) in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Baptism is not simple water only. It is water connected with the command of God and the Word of God. Therefore Baptism is a “washing of regeneration” (Titus 3:5), or “being born again” (John 3:3-8). Through Baptism, the Holy Spirit brings forgiveness of sins, faith in Jesus Christ, and eternal salvation (1 Peter 3:21). Baptism is not something we do for God; it is something God does for us. Therefore we encourage Baptism for infants and all children, as well as adults.
The Lord’s Supper
The Lord’s Supper is celebrated at this congregation in the confession and glad confidence that, as He says, our Lord gives into our mouths not only bread and wine but His very body and blood to eat and to drink for the forgiveness of sins and to strengthen our union with Him and with one another. Our Lord invites to His table those who trust His words, repent of all sin, and set aside any refusal to forgive and love as He forgives and loves us, that they may show forth His death until He comes. Because those who eat and drink our Lord’s body and blood unworthily do so to their great harm and because Holy Communion is a confession of the faith which is confessed at this altar, any who are not yet instructed, in doubt, or who hold a confession differing from that of this congregation and The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, and yet desire to receive this sacrament, are asked first to speak with the pastor or an elder.