St. Peter Lutheran Church and School is a member congregation of The Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod. Our teaching concerning the nature and work of almighty God can be summarized using the language of our larger church body…
With the universal Christian Church, The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod teaches and responds to the love of the Triune God: the Father, creator of all that exists; Jesus Christ, the Son, who became human to suffer and die for the sins of all human beings and to rise to life again in the ultimate victory over death and Satan; and the Holy Spirit, who creates faith through God’s Word and Sacraments. The three persons of the Trinity are coequal and coeternal, one God.
– Website of The Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod, http://www.lcms.org/belief-and-practice
We confess that the Bible is God’s inspired and inerrant Word, and the Bible is the source and norm for all our teaching. The testimony of the Scriptures has led the Christian Church to formulate statements of faith called “creeds” which serve as standards of belief against challenges from those who would attempt to introduce false teaching into the Church. With Christians throughout the centuries, we hold to the confession of faith and truth presented by three ecumenical (church-wide, universal) creeds: the Apostles’ Creed, the Nicene Creed, and the Athanasian Creed.
As Lutheran Christians, we follow in the train of Martin Luther and those who worked alongside him during the Reformation of the 16th century. These theologians created statements of faith which pointed the church back to the centrality of Jesus Christ and the message of the Gospel of God’s grace. The confessional documents of the Lutheran Church to which we subscribe exist together in the Book of Concord. Most notable are the following:
- The unaltered Augsburg Confession, the defining Lutheran confession of faith
- The Small and Large Catechisms of Martin Luther, tools created for teaching the faith both in the home and in the church
The teaching of the Lutheran Reformation and of St. Peter Lutheran Church and School can be summed up using three “solas” (“sola” being the Latin word for “alone”).
- “Sola gratia” – We believe that God saves human beings, forgives sins, and makes us His sons and daughters on the basis of His grace alone, apart from any worthiness in us.
- “Sola fide” – We believe that God counts us as righteous on the basis of faith alone, which receives God’s works and promises, apart from works of the Law. The Holy Spirit creates faith through the means of grace, the Gospel received in Word and Sacraments, which point to Jesus Christ as the crucified and risen Savior of the world.
- “Sola scriptura” – We believe that the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments alone are the source for teaching and belief in the Church, and that these Scriptures fully and sufficiently reveal God’s plan to save us in Jesus Christ (Gospel) and His will for how His creatures ought to live (Law).
We believe and teach that…
- The Bible is God’s inspired, inerrant Word.
- In the Bible, God is revealed as Trinity: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
- God created the world and all that exists.
- Since Adam and Eve, man is born with original sin and cannot save himself.
- God’s Law, revealed both in the Scriptures and in nature itself, is good and holy, revealing His will for how the creation ought to exist. However, it has the function of accusing all people and condemning us, since it reveals that all fall short of God’s will and are guilty of sinning against it.
- Jesus Christ, true God and true man, born of the Virgin Mary, died on the cross for all sins, and rose bodily on the third day for us and for our salvation.
- Salvation through the forgiveness of sins comes only through faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
- The means of grace (Word and Sacraments), which God the Holy Spirit uses to create faith in Christ, are the same means which sustain the Christian in the life of faith in God and love for the neighbor. As such, they remain at the center of Christian worship and are appropriately called the “marks of the Church” (the things that help us recognize where the Church exists).
In response to God’s grace…
Concerning our response individually and our congregation’s response collectively to the work of the Gospel, we invite you to view Our Vision and Mission page. St. Peter explores these teachings in more detail at our New Member Classes. If you are interested in learning more, please click through.