What We Believe#lovefirst
#lovefirst | #livebetter | #aimhigher | #gomakemore
The following are what we consider our essential beliefs, explained using words and phrases from scripture itself for clarity. We also have liberty in non-essential beliefs. Not every Jesus follower is going to believe exactly the same or even use the same wording. Bottom line, we believe that the example of living and loving like Jesus is what real faith looks like #today!, not a collection of carefully worded phrases.
All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.
(2 Timothy 3:16, 2 Peter 1:21, 1 Thessalonians 2:13)
But for us, there is one God, Yahweh, the Father, by whom all things were created, and for whom we live. And there is one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things were created, and through whom we live – sealed with the promise of the Holy Spirit.
(Exodus 3:15, Isaiah 64:8, Matthew 6:9, John 4:23-24, Ephesians 1:13, 16-17, I Corinthians 8:6)
For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. He existed before anything else, and he holds all creation together. Christ is also the head of the church, which is his body. He is the beginning, supreme over all who rise from the dead. So he is first in everything. For God in all his fullness was pleased to live in Christ, and through him God reconciled everything to himself. He made peace with everything in heaven and on earth by means of Christ’s blood on the cross.
(John 3:16-18, Colossians 1:17-20; 2:9, 1 Timothy 2:5-6)
The Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is God’s guarantee that he will give us the inheritance he promised and that he has purchased us to be his own people. He did this so we would praise and glorify him. Jesus said, “But when the Father sends the Advocate as my representative—that is, the Holy Spirit—he will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I have told you… But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—”
(Ephesians 1:14; 5:18, John 14:26, Luke 11:13, Acts 1:8, 1 Corinthians 2:10-12)
Salvation - Following Jesus:
Anyone who believes in God’s Son has eternal life. Anyone who doesn’t obey the Son will never experience eternal life but remains under God’s angry judgment. But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God. They are reborn—not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God. If you openly declare that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by openly declaring your faith that you are saved.
(John 1:12-13; 3:16-17; 36, Romans 6:23, Romans 10:9-10)
And that water is a picture of baptism (water immersion), which now saves you, not by removing dirt from your body, but as a response to God from a clean conscience. It is effective because of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. For we died and were buried with Christ by baptism. And just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glorious power of the Father, now we also may live new lives. Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.
(Mark 16:15-16, Matthew 28:19, Acts 2:38, Romans 6:4, 1 Peter 3:21)
Gifts of the Spirit
A demonstration of the Spirit is given to each of us so we can help each other. To one person the Spirit gives a message of wisdom; to another the same Spirit gives a message of special knowledge. The same Spirit gives great faith to another, and to someone else the one Spirit gives the gift of healing. He gives one person the power to perform miracles, and another the ability to prophesy. He gives someone else the ability to distinguish between spirits. Still another person is given the ability to speak in various languages, while another is given the ability to interpret what is being said. It is one and the same Spirit, distributing as He decides to each person, who produces all these things. Let love be your highest goal! But you should also desire the special abilities the Spirit gives—especially the ability to prophesy. A person who speaks in unknown languages is strengthened personally, but one who speaks a word of prophecy strengthens the entire church.
(Luke 24:49, Acts 1:8, 2:4, Romans 12:3-8, 1 Corinthians 12:7-10; 13:1-2; 14:1-22; 32-33)
God has put all things under the authority of Christ and has made him head over all things for the benefit of the church. And the church is his body; it is made full and complete by Christ, who fills all things everywhere with himself. For just as in one body we have many members, and not all the members serve the same function, so we who are many are one body in Christ, and individually we are members who belong to one another. And let us be concerned about one another in order to promote love and good works, not staying away from our worship meetings, as some habitually do, but encouraging each other. You must encourage each other every day, while it is still “today,” so that none of you will be deceived by sin and hardened against God.
(John 13:34-35, Matthew 16:18, Romans 12:4-5, Ephesians 1:22-23, Hebrews 3:13; 10:24-25)
Loving and Serving Others
For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must become your slave. For even the Son of Man (Jesus) came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many. Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ. If you think you are too important to help someone, you are only fooling yourself. You are not that important.
(Mark 12:29-31, Mark 9:35, Matthew 20:25-28, 25:40, John 13:14-15, 34-35, Galatians 5:13; 6:2-3, 1 Peter 4:10,)
Want to dig deeper?
The Bible says faith without works is dead. You can have all the right beliefs and still never take the right action. We want everyone to discover their purpose following Jesus, #today!