the apostles creed

We hold to the Apostles Creed as a summary statement of the most important beliefs of Christianity. This document is one of the earliest church documents that we have, and traces its theology and doctrine back to the Apostles teaching. The apostles creed reminds us that the essential teachings of Christianity have remained the same since even the earliest days of the church.

I believe in God, the Father almighty,     
creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,      
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit      
and born of the virgin Mary.      
He suffered under Pontius Pilate,      
was crucified, died, and was buried;      
he descended to hell.      
The third day he rose again from the dead.      
He ascended to heaven      
and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty.      
From there he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,      
the holy catholic* church,      
the communion of saints,      
the forgiveness of sins,      
the resurrection of the body,      
and the life everlasting. Amen.

*"Catholic" means universal. When used in this context, it is not referring to the Roman Catholic Church, but to the united body called the universal church that includes every person who professes Christ as their savior, regardless of denominational affiliation.

Essential vs Non-Essential Beliefs

At Restore, we talk about "essential" and "non-essential" beliefs. It's a framework that we use to keep ourselves from arguing or from becoming divisive in our relationships with one another. We want to make sure that if we disagree over something important, we know that it's important, and we deal with it accordingly. If we disagree over something unimportant, however, we want to know that too. We're going to spend a lot less energy on the non-important things!

Important things are our "essential" doctrines. "Essentials" are listed in the Apostle Creed or in our doctrinal statement, but even those lists are not exhaustive. We take our cue in identifying essential doctrines from the Bible; that is, if the Bible is absolutely clear on something, we consider it an essential. We strongly believe that we don't have any authority to declare what's true or not true for every Christian apart from what God has revealed in his Bible.

On the other hand, non-essential doctrines are those things that the Bible might mention, but doesn't necessarily take a definitive stance. If the Bible is unclear as to what a Christian should believe about a particular subject, we consider that non-essential. To put it another way, we can have a difference of perspective on non-essential doctrines and still both consider ourselves Christians.

Finally, there's a lot of stuff that we do in a certain way because we like it or we  think it's the most efficient or the best way to do something, like the color that we paint the walls or the type of music we use in worship or what kind of clothes we wear to church. We call those things preferences, and we don't argue about preferences. 

This is just one more way that Restore is committed to honoring God first and living in loving community with one another.

Doctrinal Statement

the bible

We believe that everything we need to know about God’s plan of salvation is found in the sixty-six books of the Bible, which is the very words of God protected by the Spirit of God. We believe that it is the ultimate authority on all matters of faith and life.

God

We believe that God exists in three persons—the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Jesus

Everything hinges on Jesus. We believe that faith in Jesus is the only way to heaven. He is the mediator between man and God, making atonement for our sins by his death on the cross, making it possible for sinful man to be reconciled into our relationship with God for all eternity. We believe he is the head of the Church, and the only hope for the world. He is both fully God and fully Man, conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. He was tempted in every way, died on a cross, and resurrected on the third day, and now sits in heaven at the right hand of the Father.

Holy Spirit

We believe that the Holy Spirit is living and active, and that when a person begins to follow Christ they are indwelt by the Spirit who convicts them of their sin and begins a life-long process of transforming the person into the image of Jesus, and empowering them for service.

man

We believe that man is sinful from birth and that it is only through faith in Jesus Christ as a result of the softening of their hearts by the Holy Spirit that a person can enter into eternal life.

salvation by grace

We believe that salvation can only be obtained because of the unparalleled love and Grace of Jesus Christ who shed his blood on the cross for all who believe.

the end

We believe that Jesus is coming back, that there will be a bodily resurrection of the living and the dead, that Christ will stand in judgment, and that he will reign for eternity in the new heaven and new earth. He will separate those who believe from those who do not; the believing to eternal life in heaven, and the unbelieving to eternal torment in a real, physical hell.

the church

We believe that the visible church consists of all people who have been saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ, as well as their children.