Statement of Faith

As a writer, I’m often asked about my statement of faith. That’s a good question because there’s a lot of weird stuff out there. I have a Master of Arts in Biblical Studies from Multnomah Biblical Seminary, so I have a firm foundation for handling the Bible. People also ask me if I’m liberal or conservative and I tell them I’m conservative in theology and liberal in worship. But don’t take my word for things. Explore the details for yourself in the categories that follow.

Scripture

I believe the Bible is the word of God, and is living and dynamic as we interact with it because it has the power to penetrate our hearts and change our lives.

Hebrews 4:12-13, NLT

For the word of God is full of living power. It is sharper than the sharpest knife, cutting deep into our innermost thoughts and desires. It exposes us for what we really are. Nothing in all creation can hide from him. Everything is naked and exposed before his eyes. This is the God to whom we must explain all that we have done.

I believe all Scripture—all sixty-six books of the Old and New Testaments—is inspired by God and is used to correct, guide, and equip us to live for God.

2 Timothy 3:16-17, NLT

All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It straightens us out and teaches us to do what is right. It is God’s way of preparing us in every way, fully equipped for every good thing God wants us to do.

I believe that the original writers were guided by the Holy Spirit, while writing in their own style and vocabulary.

2 Peter 1:20-21, NLT

Above all, you must understand that no prophecy in Scripture ever came from the prophets themselves or because they wanted to prophesy. It was the Holy Spirit who moved the prophets to speak from God.

I believe the Bible is accurate and trustworthy.

Psalm 19:7, NLT

The law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul. The decrees of the LORD are trustworthy, making wise the simple.

 

One True God

I believe there is one true God who created and governs all things, and we exist for Him.

1 Corinthians 8:6, NLT

But we know that there is only one God, the Father, who created everything, and we exist for him. And there is only one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom God made everything and through whom we have been given life.

I believe that God is revealed in creation so there is no excuse not to believe God exists.

Romans 1:19-20, NLT

For the truth about God is known to them instinctively. God has put this knowledge in their hearts. From the time the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky and all that God made. They can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse whatsoever for not knowing God.

I believe Jesus Christ is God’s Son, who became man without ceasing to be God, and who died to cleanse us from the stain of sin.

Hebrews 1:1-3, NLT

Long ago God spoke many times and in many ways to our ancestors through the prophets. But now in these final days, he has spoken to us through his Son. God promised everything to the Son as an inheritance, and through the Son he made the universe and everything in it. The Son reflects God’s own glory, and everything about him represents God exactly. He sustains the universe by the mighty power of his command. After he died to cleanse us from the stain of sin, he sat down in the place of honor at the right hand of the majestic God of heaven.

I believe the Holy Spirit is God’s own Spirit, who knows the heart of God and who resides in the hearts of believers.

1 Corinthians 2:10-12, NLT

But we know these things because God has revealed them to us by his Spirit, and his Spirit searches out everything and shows us even God’s deep secrets. No one can know that anyone else is really thinking except that person alone, and no one can know God’s thoughts except God’s own Spirit. And God has actually given us his Spirit (not the world’s spirit) so we can know the wonderful things God has freely given us.

I believe the Spirit-filled, Spirit-controlled life is essential to being a Christian.

Romans 8:9, NLT

But you are not controlled by your sinful nature. You are controlled by the Spirit if you have the Spirit of God living in you. (And remember that those who do not have the Spirit of Christ living in them are not Christians at all.)

 

Heaven and Hell

I believe that heaven and hell are real, and that humans are eternal beings who will live beyond our physical existence in either eternal fellowship with God in heaven or eternal separation from God in hell.

Mark 9:43-48, NLT

“If your had causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better to enter heaven with only one hand than to go into the unquenchable fires of hell with two hands. If your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better to enter heaven with only one foot than to be thrown into hell with two feet. And if your eye causes you to sin, gouge it out. It is better to enter the Kingdom of God half blind than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell, ‘where the worm never dies and the fire never goes out.'”

 

Sin and Salvation

I believe all have sinned, but anyone who believes Jesus took the punishment for our sins to satisfy God’s anger is made right with God and saved from the due punishment.

Romans 3:23-26, NLT

For all have sinned; all fall short of God’s glorious standard. Yet now God in his gracious kindness declares us not guilty. He has done this through Christ Jesus, who has freed us by taking away our sins. For God sent Jesus to take the punishment for our sins and to satisfy God’s anger against us. We are made right with God when we believe that Jesus shed his blood, sacrificing his life for us. God was being entirely fair and just when he did not punish those who sinned in former times. And he is entirely fair and just in this present time when he declares sinners to be right in his sight because they believe in Jesus.

I believe salvation is a gift from God, available to all who will accept it, and not a reward for living a good life.

Ephesians 2:8-9, NLT

God saved you by his special favor when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it.

 

The Church

I believe all who have placed their faith in Christ—despite ethnic group or geographic location—are united together as members of God’s family, the church universal (as opposed to local), of which Christ is the Head of this body of believers.

Ephesians 2:19-22, NLT

So now you Gentiles are no longer strangers and foreigners. You are citizens along with all of God’s holy people. You are members of God’s family. We are his house, built on the foundation of the apostles and the prophets. And the cornerstone is Christ Jesus himself. We who believe are carefully joined together, becoming a holy temple for the Lord. Through him you Gentiles are also joined together as part of this dwelling where God lives by his Spirit.

 

End Times

I believe the Bible prophecies concerning the end times are difficult to understand, as if trying to look through a fogged window, so I refuse to speculate as to the times or chronologies of future events because even our Lord, Jesus Christ, said He did not know the time or the hour.

Matthew 24:36, NLT

“However, no one knows the day or the hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows.”