Gethsemane Evangelical Lutheran Church Core Beliefs
A cradle that holds the infant Jesus.
Baby blankets that clothe the newborn Christ.
Lutherans often use these well-known metaphors from Martin Luther to describe the Christian Scriptures and their importance. These simple metaphors clearly and profoundly describe both what the Scriptures are and what is their purpose.
Simply stated, the Scriptures tell about Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit uses the Scriptures to present Jesus to all who listen to or read them. That is why Lutheran Christians say that the Scriptures are the “source and norm” of their teaching and practice. As the Gospel writer John wrote, “these things are written so that you may come to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that through believing you may have life in his name” (John 20:31).
Obviously, the Scriptures that are collected into a book or Bible describe and speak about many other things — everything from the creation of the world to the world’s end. Because these writings originate from a time period that spans about a thousand years and come to us in a variety of handwritten manuscripts and fragments, they have been studied carefully with all the tools of research that are available. This research continues to enrich understanding of the Scriptures and their message.
Despite the diversity of viewpoints and the complexity of the many narratives contained in the Scriptures, Lutheran Christians believe that the story of God’s steadfast love and mercy in Jesus is the heart and center of what the Scriptures have to say.
We believe that God made humanity and all creatures; that God has given us our body and soul, our reason and all our senses, and still takes care of them. God richly and daily provides us with all that we need to support our body and life. God defends us against all danger and guards and protects us from all evil. All this God does out of parental care, divine goodness, and mercy, without any merit or worthiness in us.
We believe that Jesus Christ is truly God and also truly human, He was a human born in what is now Israel/Palestine who's human mother was called Mary, who conceived him by the power of the Holy Spirit. We believe that Jesus is Lord and has redeemed us with his holy, precious blood and with his innocent suffering and death. We believe that Jesus rose from the dead, and ascended into heaven where he lives and reigns to all eternity. We believe that at an unknown time and date, Jesus will come again to our known world someday.
The Holy Spirit
We believe that we cannot by our own reason or strength believe in Jesus Christ, but the Holy Spirit calls us by the Gospel, enlightens us with God's gifts, and sanctifies and keeps us in the true faith. We believe that the Holy Spirit inspires us and guides us in faithful lives that reflect the glory of God. At the same time, we recognize the Holy Spirit as a divine mystery whose actions cannot be explained or predicted. "The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit." - John 3:8
We believe that humanity was made in God's image and that God called us "very good." (Genesis 1:31) Humans, however, are separated from God by sin and must be reconciled with God through honest confession and God's gift of grace and forgiveness.
God forgives daily and richly all sins of all believers, and on the last day will raise us up and all the dead, and will give to all believers in Christ everlasting life.