Describing Ourselves

What’s central to us is the cross alone, which means that everything – works, feelings, structures, hopes – are under the cross, marked by brokenness.

  1. Thus the historical canon of Scripture is governed by the theological canon of the cross – without leaving the historical behind. The historical canon is like the parentheses within which the theological canon of justification by faith alone functions.
  2. All religious experiences and feelings, including renewal and conversion experiences, are broken and ambiguous.
  3. The same goes for all our good works. We do not use laws found in the Bible as a revealed third use of the law which we can follow and thus do good works.  Rather, as Forde writes, the so-called third use of the law is really the first use, reached by common reason. (See the page by Forde on the law on our website and also section 6 of Our Charter.)
  4. The simul of the Christian life is total. We are totally righteous because we are covered in the perfect righteousness of Christ, and we are totally sinful in all our works, even our best ones. Thus we do not regard the Christian life as one of visible transformation or progress.

These fundamentals shape our ministries, our convention speakers/worship services, and promotional/educational materials.