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Our Basic Beliefs

We are a protestant congregation whose roots go back to the Reformation of the 1500's. As a church that never rejected the basic teachings of the early church, we affirm the Apostle's Creed, the Nicene Creed, and the Athanasian Creed.

As a Reformed Church, we believe that the Heidelberg Catechism, the Belgic Confession, the Canons of the Synod of Dort, and the Belhar Confession are both historic witnesses (they offered the gospel as they could, in their time) and faithful witnesses (they are honest interpretations of the Scriptures).  If you want to know what those documents say, simply click on any one of them. 

From the very first pages of the Bible -- the story of God creating a garden for humanity to live--to the very last pages of the Bible - the vision of God creating a restored and beautiful city for people to inhabit -- we read of a God whose love makes room for those whom God loves to grow and flourish and be joyful.

It's not too hard to see that that ideal life of being at peace in God's presence is far from the lives we usually lead. Instead of enjoying the expansive life as God desires it, we experience constriction: by all sorts of forces that the Scriptures collectively call "sin," and, ultimately, by the narrowest passage of all, death itself.

But God made a way for us, even through death, in Jesus of Nazareth.  The stories he told about the joyful and wide-open ways of God's kingdom were a threat to those who believed they controlled every person's destiny.  They tried to deny life itself to Jesus, and used the instrument of their day - the cross - to make an example of him.

God had other plans.  Jesus really died; and God really brought him through that passage, and into a new and risen life that is beyond our ability to understand.  Jesus has now gone ahead of us, through death, to make a place for us, in God's kingdom.

And God's kingdom isn't just an "after death" matter for us.  The kingdom of God - the joy of life in Christ - is a reality we live every day of our lives.

This is the good news we love sharing:
God is God.  (We don't have to be.)
Jesus is Lord. (No other power has ultimate authority over us.)
The powers of evil have been defeated.  (The last battle, with death, is already over.)
God's new day has already begun. (And God invites us to participate!  Go figure!)

That's how we understand the gospel here at United Reformed Church.
That's what drives us to seek justice, to make peace, and
to express joy in the Holy Spirit.