Now after John was arrested, Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.”
The Basis of Our Belief - The Bible, The Church and Creeds
We believe that the Bible is the Word of God, indeed, that it is 'breathed out by God' (2 Tim. 3:16). Though the Bible is a collection of books written across a vast range of time and in varying literary genres, in it we find one cohesive record of the experience of God's people, and a remarkable explanation of not only how everything came to be, but of our own human nature and experience of life, in ways which may be surprising to us in the 21st century. While we believe that it is certainly possible to come to some knowledge of the existence of God by His creation apart from the Bible, for
The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge. They have no speech, they use no words; no sound is heard from them. Yet their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world. (Psalm 19:1-4) Nevertheless, we need the Bible to come to understand who the almighty God of Creation is, and what this means for us as His created people.
The Church, as the communion of God's people, is the primary context in which we are to listen to and learn from the Bible, especially by those given the role to faithfully teach and shepherd Christ's people. As the Church in the 21st century, we draw upon a long and rich tradition of Church history, thereby benefitting from the insight and wisdom given to members of the Church throughout the ages. We affirm the creeds of historic Christian orthodoxy, which serve as summaries of key doctrines that the Church has defined in simple terms (though the truths they contain may be themselves deeply mysterious!) as irrefutable biblical truths, such as the Apostles Creed, and the Nicene Creed.
Our Triune God - Father, Son & Holy Spirit
The Bible reveals to us that the one, living and true God is Triune (that is, three-in-one, or Trinity). The three persons of the Trinity being the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. We believe that these three persons of the Trinity each have distinct roles, but are One God, being of the same essence and being. God is infinitely holy, wise, just, powerful, good and true. He is eternal and unchangeable, and He has the power of being within Himself, from which all living things depend upon for their very existence and sustenance.
We believe that through the incarnation of the Son of God, Jesus of Nazareth, God has provided us with the fullest revelation of His nature, and opened the path of salvation to all who would believe and put their trust in Him.
'“I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.' (John 14:6)
The Story of God's People - Creation, Fall, Redemption & The New Creation
The Bible tells us that God created all things, seen and unseen, from nothing, and He created them all good. However, sin came into the world through the transgression of the first man, Adam, and ever since the whole earth and everything upon it, including us, has been corrupted by it. Sin, a word often misconstrued today, can be described as our total rebellion from God, our Heavenly Father to whom we owe everything, and our attempt to place ourselves in His rightful place by elevating our own agenda. 'They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.' (Romans 1:25) Sin so damages our relationship with God in a way which we can never amend for ourselves.
However, God did not forsake His people. From before the beginning of time, He planned to save His people from the power of sin and death, by providing us with a Saviour. The Christian faith is based upon the amazing truth that through the life, death and resurrection of the Son of God, Jesus Christ, God has fulfilled the promises He made to His people in ages past to provide a Saviour to defeat sin and death, and has, once for all through Christ's atoning sacrifice on the cross, reconciled to Himself all who put their trust in Him, making us His children, and He our Father.
This transforms our relationship with God and our experience of life, death, and eternity. As we put our trust in the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ, and as we are indwelt by His Holy Spirit, we become filled with a new hope, love, peace and joy which exceeds all earthly happiness, and gives us the sure and certain hope of everlasting life with Him in a New Heaven and New Earth, where 'He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain any more, for the former things have passed away.”' (Revelation 21:4)
'For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.'