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Beliefs

Holy Scripture

Emmanuel Lutheran Church holds the books of the Old and New Testaments to be the the inspired Word of God and the only source and rule for all belief and practice. 


Because this Word of God is inspired, it is without error and profitable for teaching and correction (2 Tim 3:16).  The words of Holy Scripture must be understood according to their plain sense along with the historical background of the writing.

To search the Scriptures, visit Biblegateway.com

The Lutheran Confessions

The Lutheran Confessions are a collection of writings (collected in the Book of Concord) that explain what we believe, according to the Holy Scriptures.  These writings include:

The Apostles' Creed
The Nicene Creed
The Athanasian Creed
The Augsburg Confession
The Apology* of the Augsburg Confession
The Smalcald Articles
The Treatise on the Power and Primacy of the Pope
The Small and Large Catechisms of Martin Luther
The Formula of Concord

*Apology means defense.

These writings are in full agreement with the Holy Scriptures, and are therefore foundational for our faith in the Lutheran Church.

To view these documents, visit bookofconcord.org.

Worship and Christian Living

The doctrines and teachings of our Church are not simply dead words on a page, but are living and active in the lives of our members.

Worship in the Lutheran Church is often called the Divine Service.  When we gather together, it is chiefly for the purpose of receiving the gifts of God through the preaching of the Gospel and the Holy Sacraments.  These deliver the forgiveness of sins, righteousness, and salvation.  Faith is not merely knowing the facts about Jesus, but to know that these blessings are given for you through the means of grace.

The Divine Service is the central aspect to a Christian life.  The blessings given through preaching and the Sacraments create new life in the believer and move him or her into a life of love toward God and service to neighbor. 

For more information about our practice of the Divine Service at Emmanuel, visit our Liturgy page.

Articles of Faith

God
The only true God is the Triune God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Though there is one divine essence, it is shared by three persons.  This is a mystery and can only be grasped by faith.  This God is maker and preserver of all things.

Sin
Since the fall of Adam, the first man, all who are naturally born are born sinful, "that is, without fear of God, without trust in God, and with the inclination to sin."  This sin causes condemnation and eternal death for anyone who is not born anew through Baptism and the Holy Spirit.

The Son of God
The Son of God took on human nature in the womb of the Virgin Mary.  In the one person of Jesus is two natures inseparably joined--human and divine.  Though He is fully and completely human, He alone is without sin, being conceived of the Holy Spirit.

This one Christ, true God and true man suffered, was crucified, died and was buried.  His death made atonement for all sins--both the sins with which we are born (Original Sin) and all sins we ourselves have committed or will commit (Actual Sin). 

He also descended into hell and rose again on the third day.  He ascended to heaven to sit at His Father's right hand.  He will one day return openly  to judge the living and the dead.  When this day is no one knows, except the Father only. 

Justification
Justification is being returned to a right relationship with God.  We teach that this cannot be accomplished by human works or merit, but solely by grace through faith in Jesus Christ.  Justification happens through the forgiveness of sins.

The Ministry

God has established divine means by which we obtain this faith.  Through the preaching of the Gospel and the administration of the Sacraments (Holy Baptism and the Lord's Supper) the Holy Spirit is given and God works faith when and where it pleases Him.

New Obedience
Faith in Christ produces good works.  Those these works in no way contribute to salvation, they are necessary, for without works, faith is dead

The Church
The Church is found wherever the saints are gathered by God around His Gospel purely taught and the Sacraments properly administered.  The Church is, properly speaking, invisible and hidden, though it is revealed through preaching and the Sacraments.

Baptism
Holy Baptism is the combination of water with God's Word.  Baptism is necessary for salvation because by it, God's grace is offered.  Children also may be baptized because they too are in need of God's grace and forgiveness.

The Lord's Supper
The Lord's Supper is the true body and blood of Jesus Christ, given under bread and wine, for Christians to eat and to drink.  It is given for the forgiveness of sins.  It is not a mere meal of remembrance or a symbolic or allegorical connection to Christ's non-present body, but the true body and blood of Jesus, as His own words declare, "This is My body...This is My blood."

For more information regarding what Lutherans believe as well as for frequently asked questions, visit Belief and Practice at lcms.org.

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