We Are A Confessional Lutheran Church
We maintain doctrine based only on the Word of God and the Lutheran Confessions, which are built upon it. We believe the canonical Scriptures are:
"I am the LORD, and there is no other... I, the LORD, speak the Truth; I declare what is right." (Isaiah 45:18-19)
The Eternal Word of God
"Your Word, O LORD, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens." (Psalm 119:89)
The Inerrant Word of God
"And the Words of the LORD are flawless..." (Psalm 12:6)
Fully Inspired by God and Written by Man
"All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work." (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
In our creeds, we confess the Triune God, three distinct persons in One God: God the Father, God the Son, Jesus Christ, and God the Holy Spirit. We acknowledge that if left to our own devices, we are lost: hopeless sinners in need of a Savior. But only by God's great love, in the working of the Holy Spirit, through faith in the substitutionary, sacrificial, atoning death of Jesus Christ, we are saved.
"... for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by His grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus." (Romans 3:23-24)
For a more detailed summary of these beliefs, see the following:
We Are an Evangelical Lutheran Church
The term evangelical comes from the Greek word meaning "Gospel," or "good news." Our faith in the Gospel of Jesus Christ is not private. We desire to confess publicly what God has put into our hearts, and we seek to execute the commission Jesus himself gave to the church:
"All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you." (Matthew 28:19-20)
"This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the Truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself as a ransom for all men..." (1 Timothy 2:3-6)
We Are a Servant Church
We know that all we have belongs to the Lord. Compelled by the love of God and out of gratitude to him, we freely offer him our time, talents, and treasures to the work of his kingdom. Our good works do not save us. But, by faith, we believe that our purpose in life is to glorify God in all we think, say and do. We serve God by serving others.
"So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God." (1 Corinthians 10:31)
"For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." (Ephesians 2:10)
"I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of Mine, you did for Me." (Matthew 25:40)
We Reverently Worship Our Lord
Because we believe our God is a God of order and that He must be worshipped on His terms, in what is good and pleasing to Him, we follow a traditional, liturgical worship service. Following the example of Martin Luther (as most Lutherans have since the time of the Reformation) St. John's Order of Service follows a pattern of worship that has been used in Christian churches since about the second century. The historic pattern consists of:
The Ordinary (five songs that review the basic teachings about our salvation):
The Kyrie (Lord, Have Mercy) - usually sung or spoken during the confession of sin and prayer of the church
Gloria (Glory Be to God) - an expression of praise to God
The Creed - Our confession, or statement of belief, usually spoken together inn our congregation
Agnus Dei (Lamb of God)
The Proper - a set of lessons, prayers, and songs which can take their themes from the Christian Church Year calendar.
The Meal - Also known as the Sacrament of the Altar, Holy Communion, or Lord's Supper
Our individual services follow a liturgical church year. Its purpose is not merely to mark the passage of time, but to celebrate, understand more fully, and honor Christ. The church year follows Christ from his birth, life, death, resurrection, and ascension, to his triumphant return as judge and king.
"But everything should be done in a fitting and orderly way." (1 Corinthians 14:40)
"Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire." (Hebrews 12:28-29)
Our hymns teach the great Truths of the Word of God. The emphasis is on honoring and understanding God, who He is, and what He has done for us. It is through this understanding that our hearts are inspired and stirred, in love for God and for one another.
"Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in Spirit and Truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is Spirit, and His worshipers must worship in Spirit and in Truth." (John 4:23-24)
"Give thanks to the LORD, call on His name; make known among the nations what He has done. Sing to Him, sing praise to Him; tell of all His wonderful acts. Glory in His holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the LORD rejoice." (Psalm 105:1-3)
We Share a Close Fellowship within Our Congregation
Through our faith in the salvation of Christ and through God's Word and Sacrament, we share an intimate bond with one another unlike any the world has to offer. Being in agreement with one another in what we believe is foundational to our fellowship.
"...if we walk in the Light, as He is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, His Son, purifies us from all sin." (1 John 1:5-7)
"I appeal to you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another so that there may be no divisions among you and that you may be perfectly united in mind and thought." (1 Corinthians 1:10)