WHAT DO WE BELIEVE?
We also believe that Christians are called to confess their faith publicly and give witness to the truth of the Word of God.
We also hold up the following confessions as faithful statements of the Word of God:
1. The Apostles’ Creed
2. The Nicene Creed
3. The Athanasian Creed
4. The Unaltered Augsburg Confession
5. The Apology of the Augsburg Confession
6. The Smalcald Articles
7. The Large Catechism of Dr. Martin Luther
8. The Small Catechism of Dr. Martin Luther
9. The Formula of Concord
You can find these testimonies of faith online and also collected together in a compendium called The Book of Concord. Feel free to ask our pastor for help in finding and studying them.
WHO ARE WE?
We are an Evangelical Lutheran Church which belongs to a larger fellowship of Lutheran churches in the United States called the Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod. This name is a shortened version of the fellowship’s much longer (but perhaps more inclusive sounding) name from the 1800’s. This original name in German was: The German Evangelical Lutheran Church of Missouri, Ohio, and Other States.
WHY DO WE USE THE WORD LUTHERAN?
We call ourselves Lutheran because of the actions of a catholic monk, priest, and theologian named Martin Luder who lived in the 1500’s. Martin Luder earnestly desired to purge himself of all sin and grow in holy living. But all his efforts to this end failed. No matter how hard he tried to follow the rules of the church and imitate Jesus and other saints he could not rid himself of his sinfulness and guilt.
Then, through his study of the Bible, Luther discovered that God made sinners holy (justification) by faith in Jesus Christ and not by works prescribed by the church. This insight gave Luther the certainty of forgiveness of sins. This certainty not only freed Luther from his guilt, but it also freed him from the belief that merely following a set of rules could generate personal holiness. It also set him free to trust that his life would become holy (sanctification) through the initiative and guidance of the Holy Spirit and not his own effort.
To reflect his newly found freedom Martin Luder changed his last name from Luder to Luther. The word Luther comes from the greek word eleutheros which means “freedom”. We call ourselves Lutheran because we believe that only Jesus frees us from the power of sin, death, and the devil. And we believe that Jesus frees us for one and only one reason–He has freely chosen to love us and rescue us by forgiving our sins. God’s choice to free us belongs to Him alone. He does not choose because of our own spiritual or earthly achievements. We believe that God’s loving choice to free us is revealed to all only through the Word of God.