What We Believe

 

WHAT DO WE BELIEVE? –

At Yorkfield we believe that the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ is the most central aspect of our faith. Near to that is our understanding of the Bible as the inspired word of God and our clearest revelation of God's will for us in Christ. Beyond these core convictions we recognize other principles of the Reformation ("grace alone, faith alone and scripture alone") that guide our life in Christ (see "Specific Reformed Understandings" below).

 

ROOM FOR MYSTERY –

We also appreciate that God can't be contained in anything we might say about him, nor does the Ruler of the Universe fit neatly into any particular theological or denominational boxes we might be tempted to put him in. God's breadth and scope, majesty, and power so far transcend our human perceptions that we are always in danger of creating idols out of our limited thoughts about him.

 

ROOM FOR DIFFERENCE –

We also believe that faithful Christians may in good conscience differ on many subjects. Within our congregation are represented most sides of every topic imaginable. What this means is that we are trying to love and respect each other first as children of God, and let everything else follow from that. We would also like to hold the door open to the possibility that as strongly as we feel about a subject, God might just be trying to tell us something through the person sitting next to us in the pew who holds the exact opposite position. Indeed, if brothers and sisters in Christ can't live together in disagreement, who can?

 

SPECIFIC REFORMED UNDERSTANDINGS –

From the PC(USA) Book of Order

"The good news of the Gospel is that the triune God – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – creates, redeems, sustains, rules, and transforms all things and all people."

 

"Human beings have no higher goal in life than to glorify and enjoy God now and forever, living in covenant fellowship with God and participating in God's Mission."

    

"God has put all things under the Lordship of Jesus Christ and has made Christ Head of the Church, which is his body."

  

The "Great Ends" of the Church are:

"the proclamation of the gospel  for the salvation of humankind;

"the shelter, nurture, and spiritual fellowship of the children of God;

"the maintenance of divine worship;

"the preservation of the truth;

"the promotion of social righteousness; and

"the exhibition of the Kingdom of Heaven to the world."

 

"In its confessions, the Presbyterian Church (USA) expresses the faith of the Reformed tradition. Central to this tradition is the affirmation of the majesty, holiness, and providence of God who in Christ and by the power of the Spirit creates, sustains, rules and redeems the world in the freedom of sovereign righteousness and love. Related to this central affirmation of God's sovereignty are other great themes of the Reformed tradition:

‚ The election of the people of God for service as well as for salvation;

‚ Covenant life marked by a disciplined concern for order in the church according to the Word of God;

‚ A faithful stewardship that shuns ostentation and seeks proper use of the gifts of God's creation; and

‚ The recognition of the human tendency to idolatry and tyranny, which calls the people of God to work for the transformation of society by seeking justice and living in obedience to the Word of God.

 

2011 BELIEFS SURVEY –

As part of a 2011 process of discernment, the congregation participated in a survey of its beliefs in three main areas:

1.  The inspiration of scripture

2.  Who gets into heaven/goes to hell

3.  The Bible & homosexuality

    Click for a PDF of the results

 

EXPECTATIONS OF MEMBERS –

Worship - As a part of loving God, our expectation is that you will want to spend time regularly worshiping God by praising the Lord's goodness, giving thanks for creating you, and offering you a place in eternity.

 

We know there are seasons in all our lives when we don't always feel like worshiping, but those times are not God's fault. God still deserves our attention. (It's kind of like being married. You may have a bad day at work, but that doesn't mean you get to treat your spouse poorly when you come home.) More often than not, many discover that when they worship even when they don't feel like it, often their hearts are "strangely warmed."

 

Some say, "I don't need to be in a church service to worship," and that is certainly true. We would hope you should be able to cultivate the ability to worship God anywhere and at any time. But our experience is that most people who say that are, in fact, seldom worshiping God anywhere at any time. The fact is that we were called to be a community of believers who are meant to worship together. We need others to encourage us and to hold us accountable.

 

Service through Gifts-based Ministries – If you love someone, you not only want to spend time with them, but you want to do things for them, and be engaged in what they are doing. God's mission is caring for creation: you and everything else. In the life of Christ we see that God has a particular heart for "the least of these." At Yorkfield we want you to support the work of God's church financially, and also find a place to serve others in an area you are passionate about that utilizes your God-given spiritual gifts.

 

This "gifts-based" ministry is something we are passionate about. We don't need or want you to simply fill a slot that happens to be open, but to find a place to serve that exercises your energy and imagination. If you don't know what your spiritual gifts are, we have some tools (particularly the NETWORK course) to help you discover your passion, spiritual gifts and ministry style.

 

Self-Care through Small Groups – Besides worshiping and serving God, we want you to enjoy God! In particular, we want you to find a place in the church where you can be fed, where you can grow and be spiritually nourished. At Yorkfield we have found that this happens most often in our Small Group Ministry.

 

Small Groups are the place where you can talk about those places where your faith meets the reality of the everyday world: work, school, marriage, family, child raising, etc. Small Groups are where we make new friends and learn to encourage each other as we strive to follow Christ.

 

Each group generally has 8-12 members, and they come in all shapes and varieties: men's groups, women's groups, couple's groups; groups for older adults and groups for 20-30-somethings, etc.

 

 

 

 

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