Statement of Faith
We believe that, “theology matters.”
Therefore we desire to restore Christian to “Christian universalism,” which after its journey through Modernism is presently an ambiguous term. We want to be clear as possible what we mean when we speak of “Christian Universalism.” Provided here is a summary of our core beliefs. However, no words representing our faith have any substance apart from connection to the Living Word of God, Jesus Christ. Words are meaningless outside the context of a life of love for God and others.
We hold to the early creeds such as the Apostle’s Creed and the Nicene Creed. Profoundly neither of these creeds include the doctrine of an eternal hell:
The Apostle’s Creed:
I believe in God, the Father Almighty,
the Maker of heaven and earth,
and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord:
Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost,
born of the virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, dead, and buried;
He descended into hell.
The third day He arose again from the dead;
He ascended into heaven,
and sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty;
from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Ghost;
the holy catholic church;
the communion of saints;
the forgiveness of sins;
the resurrection of the body;
and the life everlasting. Amen.
The Nicene Creed can be found here: http://www.creeds.net/ancient/nicene.html
Where the Apostle’s and Nicene creeds are silent as to the nature of “hell” we believe we have the freedom to take God seriously when He said:
“On this mountain the Lord Almighty will prepare a feast of rich food for all peoples, a banquet of aged wine—the best of meats and the finest of wines. On this mountain he will destroy the shroud that enfolds all peoples, the sheet that covers all nations; he will swallow up death forever. The Sovereign Lord will wipe away the tears from all faces; he will remove the disgrace of his people from all the earth. The Lord has spoken.” Isaiah 25:6-8
“Among the gods there is none like you, O Lord; no deeds can compare with yours. All the nations you have made will come and worship before you, O Lord; they will bring glory to your name. For you are great and do marvelous deeds; you alone are God.” Psalm 86:8-10
“And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” John 12:32
“The last enemy to be destroyed is death.” 1 Cor 15:26
“It is finished”. John 19:30
“Behold, I am making all things new”. Rev 21:5
In regard to creeds A. W. Tozer said:
“That our idea of God corresponds as nearly as possible to the true being of God is of immense importance to us. Compared with our actual thoughts about Him, our creedal statements are of little consequence. Our real idea of God may lie buried under the rubbish of conventional religious notions and may require an intelligent and vigorous search before it is finally unearthed and exposed for what it is.”
Tozer is saying that how we live (and how we pray) reveal most accurately what we truly believe.
We believe in You because we see the work of Your hand as a Father in the creation all around us every day. We see Your image in the love, beauty and glory of others. Gen 1:27, Isa 6:3
We bow before You because You are the Holy Sovereign God of the Universe. There is no one greater or higher and no desire of Yours can fail because Your love and power never fail. We bow now but we are told we will join every person in the universe to someday bow and confess together that Jesus Christ is Lord to Your glory, our Father. Job 42:2, I Cor 13:8, Phil 2
We trust You because you have promised to “make all things new” through Christ and to restore every heart to their original purpose and design of loving and worshipping You. We know that You are good because You have promised to be “all in all” and “everything to every one.” We fear you but are not afraid of you because you are love. Rev 21:5, I Cor 15:28, 1 John 4
We love You because You first loved us, and even while we were Your enemies You demonstrated Your love for us through Your life of obedience and death on the cross on our behalf. Rom 5:10, I Jn 4:19
We confess to You our sin because You are “faithful and just and will forgive us our sin and cleanse us from all our unrighteousness.” I John 1:9,
We hope in You because it was Your blood that is the source of life, poured out for us, that makes us alive again. It was Your death that conquered our sin and Your Resurrection that swallowed up our death in victory. Jesus Christ redeemed and revealed our original design as Your image-bearers. Heb 9:22, I Cor 15:55
We worship You because You brought Resurrection hope to the world and the entire created order as You were raised to life as the “firstfruit” of the Resurrection of all creation. Col 1:15
We follow You because “You alone have the words of life” and Your “commands are not burdensome.” We follow You because Your laws are simply the outworking of loving You by loving our neighbors as ourselves. We want to follow You because love is the way of Your heart and we therefore want to be like You, our Father. We can love your law because Christ is the fulfillment of the law for us and now your laws are a promise and not a curse. John 6:69, I John 5:3, Rom 10:4
We give our lives to You and for others because You gave Your life for us and for the entire world. We now see the value of every human being because we are now aware of Your image and likeness in each person we meet. The vision of Your sacrificial love for us is so beautiful and powerful that we would lay down our very lives for Your honor and glory and to champion Your Great Name. Luke 9:23
In Jesus’ Name, Amen
In closing we share with you the way The Sanctuary summarized their belief in the ultimate redemption and restoration of all:
God is One, and so his judgment is Love.
God is Love, and so desires to save.
God is Almighty, and so can save.
God is Jesus, and so does save.
“For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell. And through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.” (Col.1:19-20)
God is better than you thought.
The Love of Jesus is deeper than you know.
And the Spirit is everywhere working the wonders of Mercy.