WHAT WE BELIEVE
Jesus: We believe that Jesus is the center, core and essence of our faith. He died for the sins of the world on the cross and rose again to show his victory over death–victory over sin and death that is available for all believers in Him (John 3:16).
Bible: We believe that God’s Word, the 66 books of the Bible, is the Word of God. (2 Tim. 3:16) We do NOT believe that the Bible only “contains” the Word of God (as some hold) nor do we believe that the Bible is SO important that we take random verses out of context and use it for own purposes simply because it is in the Bible (as others hold). Rather taking the whole counsel of God together–that Scripture interprets Scripture–the basis of our faith and belief is understood.
Humanity: We are all born into sin and need a Savior. We are dead in our trespasses and sins and therefore do not have free will (How much freedom/free choice does a dead person have?)(when it comes to coming to faith in Jesus, aka, justification), but rather faith is a gift from God worked in us by the Holy Spirit (who uses God’s Word, the means of grace). Ephesians 2:8-9 is the Flagship verse: “For by grace are you saved through faith and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works lest any person should boast.” This way, God gets all the credit and we are assured of our salvation not based upon my goodness or if I said a prayer right, but on God’s objective faithfulness.
Christian Life: A Christian (follower of the Way, Jesus) is to live life led by the Holy Spirit. (Gal. 5:22-23) This includes kindness, generosity, compassion–in essence, Christian love. This is not something we “manufacturer” but rather a reflection of Christ’s love to us–motivated by love, not obligation. We do have freewill in this regard (called “Sanctification”) to choose or not to choose to obey Christ and walk in His ways, to swear at someone who cuts us off on the freeway or to refrain (or even pray for them!).
Distinctions: Concerning the Lord’s Supper, we believe that because Jesus said, “This is my body” and “this is my blood” that the bread and wine do not simply “represent” his body and blood, but that it truely is His body and blood 100% and also bread and wine 100%. Logically inconsistent, but this is the nature of Jesus Himself: 100% God and also inexplainably 100% man. As to baptism, we believe that it is not an “outward sign of inward obedience” but rather the very means whereby God adopts us into His family. Matt. 28:19-20 states, “Go and make disciples of all nations baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and teaching them to obey . . .” A disciple is made from this simple formula: baptize and teach. For infants the early church modeled baptize then teach. For adults the early church modeled teach then baptize. We simply do the same thing at Prince of Peace.
Eternal Life: The reward for all believers is not earthly (although God may and does bless us on earth), but rather eternal rest, joy, happiness, satisfaction, worship in heaven for all eternity! The best is yet to come! This is our promise to which we cling: Jesus conquered death and rose from the dead that we too can walk, live and then die to be with Him forever for all of eternity!