A Statement of Faith – this was drawn up in 1992 and affirmed by the GEAR committee in November of that year, and was the theme of a special edition of our magazine in January 1993. This served as a contribution to the theological debate that was going on at the time when the traditional beliefs of the church were being questioned. Members of the current committee are asked to endorse this statement as we feel it is still vital to stand on these key beliefs that we see as central to Christian faith.
We believe in one God, almighty, everlasting and unchanging, who exists eternally in three persons – Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
We believe that this God is sovereign in creation, revelation, redemption, final judgment and the life of the world to come.
We believe that God has made himself known implicitly in creation and explicitly through the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments. We affirm that the Bible is His written Word, inspired by His Spirit, entirely trustworthy and supremely authoritative for the faith and conduct of all people.
We believe that out of love for the world God has made Himself known definitively in the Word made flesh, His only Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, in whom dwells the fulness of deity. We believe that Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. We believe that He was fully human yet without sin, and that he remained fully divine. Through His life and ministry He revealed God’s nature and purpose to the world. We believe that He suffered, died and was buried. We believe that on the third day He was raised bodily from the dead, leaving an empty tomb. We believe that He ascended into heaven, from where He now reigns in glory and intercedes for His people.
We believe in the Holy Spirit, who convicts people of sin, leads them to repentance and faith in Christ, makes them members of His Church and strengthens them for holy living. We believe that this Spirit indwells all Christian believers, desiring to fill them continually, to produce His fruit in their lives and to transform them into the likeness of ChrIst. The gifts of the Holy Spirit equip and empower the Church for its task of testifying to and manifesting the Kingdom of God.
We believe that humanity was originally created sinless by God, but then fell through wilful rebellion and thereby became universally estranged from Him and subject to His wrath and condemnation.
We believe that on the cross Jesus suffered and died once and for all in the place of sinners, bearing their guilt, sin and punishment, paying the price for their rebellion and reconciling them to God. By His death, Jesus overcame the power of the devil and ensured the ultimate defeat of the forces of evil.
We believe that salvation is assured for all who by grace repent of their sins, acknowledge that Jesus died for them and personally accept Him through faith as Lord and Saviour. We believe that He is the only Mediator between God and humanity and that salvation is found through no one else.
We believe that all Christians are called and commissioned by Christ to share the good news of salvation, to make disciples and to undertake acts of service to those in need. Although reconciliation between people and with creation is not the same as reconciliation with God, we believe that the gospel compels Christians to work for peace and social justice.
We believe that Christ established one holy, universal Church which is His body and of which He is the head. The Church visible on earth is the imperfect expression of the invisible Church, which comprises all true believers of every time and place.
We believe that in the last days Jesus Christ will return visibly and personally. The dead will be raised and, with all those still living, will face divine judgment. Christ will pronounce God’s just condemnation on those who have rejected Him and receive the redeemed to eternal glory.
Thanks be to God.