Cornerstone United Methodist Church
Friday, March 01, 2013
To Reach, To Grow, To Send
What We Believe
Cornerstone UMC celebrates its identity as a United Methodist congregation.
The official doctrinal statements of United Methodism are:
The basic beliefs of the United Methodist Church include:
Triune God. God is one God in three persons: Father , Son and Holy Spirit .
Scripture. The writings in the Old Testament and New Testament are the inspired word of God.
Sacraments. The UMC recognizes two sacraments: Baptism and Holy Communion . The Church generally practices infant baptism and recognizes baptisms from other denominations, and also practices open communion.
Inclusivity. The UMC includes and welcomes people of all races , cultures , and ages.
Free will. The UMC believes that people, while corrupted by sin , are free to make their own choices because of God's Divine Grace .
Grace. The UMC believes that God gives his love freely to all people.
Thus the theological foundation for Cornerstone Church is soundly Wesleyan, evangelical, orthodox and biblical.
Cornerstone Church is also a part of the Confessing Movement within the United Methodist Church.
With the Confessing Movement we confess Jesus Christ:
"But what about you?" he [Jesus] asked. "Who do you say I am?" Simon Peter answered, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God." Jesus replied, "Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in heaven. (Matthew 16:15-17 NIV)
We confess, in accordance with Holy Scripture and with the Holy Spirit's help, that Jesus Christ is the one and only Son of God. Confession of Jesus as the Son is essential, not a matter of personal opinion. It is a matter of revelation, which was given to Peter and to the Church by God, whom Jesus called Father. With Peter and the other Apostles, we confess that Jesus is the Christ. We confess with John and the other Apostles that Jesus of Nazareth, the Word made flesh, the eternal Son of God, has come into the world to make known the fullness of God's glory in grace and truth (John 1). Therefore we confess, in continuity with the apostolic witness of the Church, that Jesus Christ is "true God from true God" (the Nicene Creed), the Second Person of the Holy Trinity: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
We repudiate teachings that claim the person of Jesus Christ is not adequate to reveal the fullness of God (Hebrews 1:1-3). We reject the claim that the maleness of Jesus disqualifies him as the true revelation of God. We reject the claim that God can be fully known apart from Jesus Christ. According to the apostolic faith, such teachings are false and unfaithful to the Gospel.
"Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved." (Acts 4:12)
We confess, in accordance with Holy Scripture and with the Holy Spirit's help, that Jesus Christ is the one and only Savior of the world. In him, we see not only the fullness and the glory of God, but also the model and power for our own freedom from the bondage of sin and death (Hebrews 2:14-18). Through his obedient life, teaching, and ministry, his death on the cross for the sins of the world, and his bodily resurrection, he is the Savior of the world. God through Jesus Christ conquers sin and death, brings salvation to this rebellious world, and reconciles "the world to himself" (2 Corinthians 5:18-21).
We repudiate teachings that repress, turn away from, or offer substitutes for the atoning death and life-giving resurrection of Jesus. We oppose any redefinition of the Christian faith that diminishes or eliminates the saving work of Jesus Christ in order to make dialogue with others more agreeable. We reject any claim that regards the incarnation, crucifixion, and resurrection as merely one salvation among others. According to the apostolic faith, such teachings are false and unfaithful to the Gospel.
So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness. See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ. For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form and you have been given fullness in Christ, who is the head over every power and authority. (Colossains 2:6-10 NIV)
We confess, in accordance with Holy Scripture and with the Holy Spirit's help, that Jesus Christ is the one and only Lord of creation and history. In the midst of many competing voices, the Church seeks to hear, trust and obey Jesus the Lord and his commandments (1 Corinthians 8:5,6). True authority in the Church derives from and furthers obedience to this Lord. True authority in the Church holds the [Christian] community accountable to this Lord, especially when teachings and practices arise that undermine or deny his Lordship.
We repudiate teachings and practices that misuse principles of inclusivenss and tolerance to distort the doctrine and discipline of the Church. We deny the claim that the individual is free to decide what is true and what is false, what is good and what is evil. We reject widespread and often unchallenged practices in and by the Church that rebel against the Lordship of Jesus Christ. For example:
Any new teachings in the Church that seek to set aside the biblical witness cannot be established by votes, or appeals to personal experience, or by responding to contemporary pressures. According to the apostolic faith, such teachings and practices are false and unfaithful to the Gospel.
The Confessional Charge.
This, then, is our confession: We confess that Jesus Christ is the Son, the Savior, and the Lord, according to the Scriptures. The United Methodist Church has never had an institutional guarantee of doctrinal diversity without boundaries. We implore other United Methodists, laity and clergy, to join us in this confession. Relying upon the power of the Holy Spirit, we vow to make this confession in the congregations, boards, divisions, agencies, seminaries, and conferences of our denomination. We will faithfully support United Methodist activities, groups, programs, and publications that further this confession and spread the Good News throughout the world in faithful obedience to the apostolic witness. We will vigorously challenge and hold accountable those that undermine this confession. All the while, readying for the coming of Jesus Christ in power and glory, we welcome ecumenical partnerships in the advancement of this confession. [Note: This Confession was officially adopted as a part of Cornerstone UMC's doctrinal self-description by the Constituting Conference of January 12, 1997]
The Wesleyan and evangelical theology of Cornerstone United Methodist Church means that we offer salvation of the whole person through Jesus Christ. Cornerstone is orthodox, accepting the classical Christian doctrines of the whole Church as expressed in the Apostles' and Nicene Creeds and as expressed in the early Church Fathers. We reject those practices and beliefs that are not in harmony with the orthodox Christian faith. We believe that the Scriptures are God's authoritative, inspired, inerrant self-revelation.