What We Believe

Who we are and what we believe

Early Christians called themselves “People of the Way;” walking in the footsteps of Christ, living out the vision of the ‘Kingdom of God.’  Following this model, we emphasize faithful living, character, and caring more than static creeds or second-hand faith.

God is still speaking, still moving in our lives, and we find God through engagement in simple patterns of shared worship and friendship, kindness and study, sharing and caring.  We do not have ‘tests of faith’ but encourage personal journeys of discovery.

Jesus taught that we are closest to God when we help others.  “When I was hungry, you gave me food; when I was thirsty, you gave me something to drink…”(Matt 25) So we strive to reach out to help others in our community and the world through hands-on service projects and generosity.

This is a ‘congregational’ church; we share equally in ministry and governance.  We seek harmony and understanding in community life, teach children and adults the ways of God, and grow in spiritual depth and mature faith. This church has been worshiping on this spot for over 300 years, faithfully seeking God’s way.

Although our roots go back to the 1600’s and we represent a merger of Baptist and Dutch Reformed Churches, we are members of an ecumenical Christian denomination, the United Church of Christ.  The United Church of Christ was the first American church to ordain a woman, the first to ordain a black man, the first to ordain an openly gay man, and the first to acknowledge that homosexuality is not sinful.  Our understanding of the world comes from the Bible, but we interpret God’s word anew for the context of our time.

“In essentials unity: in non-essentials, diversity; in all things love.”

The Authority and Power of the Bible

We affirm the divine inspiration, truthfulness and authority of both Old and New Testament Scriptures in their entirety as the only written word of God, without error in all that it affirms, and the only infallible rule of faith and practice. We also affirm the power of God's word to accomplish his purpose of salvation. The message of the Bible is addressed to all men and women. For God's revelation in Christ and in Scripture is unchangeable. Through it the Holy Spirit still speaks today. He illumines the minds of God's people in every culture to perceive its truth freshly through their own eyes and thus discloses to the whole Church ever more of the many-colored wisdom of God.

II TIM. 3:16; II PET. 1:21; JOHN 10:35

The Uniqueness and Universality of Christ

We affirm that there is only one Saviour and only one gospel, although there is a wide diversity of evangelistic approaches. We recognise that everyone has some knowledge of God through his general revelation in nature. But we deny that this can save, for people suppress the truth by their unrighteousness. We also reject as derogatory to Christ and the gospel every kind of syncretism and dialogue which implies that Christ speaks equally through all religions and ideologies. Jesus Christ, being himself the only God-man, who gave himself as the only ransom for sinners, is the only mediator between God and people. There is no other name by which we must be saved. All men and women are perishing because of sin, but God loves everyone, not wishing that any should perish but that all should repent. Yet those who reject Christ repudiate the joy of salvation and condemn themselves to eternal separation from God. To proclaim Jesus as "the Saviour of the world" is not to affirm that all people are either automatically or ultimately saved, still less to affirm that all religions offer salvation in Christ. Rather it is to proclaim God's love for a world of sinners and to invite everyone to respond to him as Saviour and Lord in the wholehearted personal commitment of repentance and faith. Jesus Christ has been exalted above every other name; we long for the day when every knee shall bow to him and every tongue shall confess him Lord.

GAL. 1:6-9;ROM. 1:18-32; I TIM. 2:5,6; ACTS 4:12

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