From the earliest New Testament days, persons evidenced their belief in God and their acceptance of Jesus Christ through a simple confession of faith. To this day, becoming a member of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) requires the confession listed in Philippians 2:
“Therefore God also highly exalted him and gave him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
Persons who wish to join our congregation are asked only, “Do you believe that Jesus is Lord?”
We disciples have beliefs and practices in common with all sorts of Christians.
- Like Baptists, we practice baptism by immersion, although persons coming into our church who were baptized in another way are not expected to be rebaptized.
- Like Roman Catholics and Episcopalians, we have communion every Sunday.
- Like Presbyterians, our congregations call their own ministers rather than accepting assigned pastors.
- Like the United Church of Christ, our congregations are self-governed.
- In many ways the Disciples have become a “melting pot” of Christians, a Church in which persons from a wide variety of traditions can feel comfortable.
Although we have traditionally stated the Disciples have “no creed but Christ,” in recent years an Affirmation of Faith was designed by our Church, which gives insight into our understanding of what it means to accept Jesus Christ as Lord:
As Members of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), we confess that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God, and proclaim him Lord and Savior of the world. In Christ’s name and by his grace we accept our mission of witness and service to all people. We rejoice in God, maker of heaven and earth, and in the covenant of love which binds us to God and one another. Through baptism into Christ we enter into newness of life and are made one with the whole people of God. In the communion of the Holy Spirit we are joined in discipleship and in obedience to Christ. At the table of the Lord we celebrate with thanksgiving the saving acts and presence of Christ. Within the universal church we receive the gift of ministry and the light of scripture. In the bonds of Christian faith we yield ourselves to God that we may serve the
One whose kingdom has no end. Blessing, glory and honor be to God forever.Amen