What is a Christian?
What We Believe
What we believe can be summed up in four words – Biblical, Evangelical, Reformed, and Presbyterian.
We’re Biblical – this means that, along with all other true Christian churches, the Presbyterian Church believes that the Bible is the infallible Word of God. As a result of this commitment to the Bible, we uphold the historic Christian faith.
- We believe in one God in the Trinity of the three persons of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
- We affirm the real historical events of Christ’s birth, life, death, resurrection and future return. We look to Him for the forgiveness of sins and eternal life.
- We submit to the Scriptures as the final authority in all matters of faith and conduct.
- We seek to live in obedience to the Great Commandment of the Lord Jesus Christ: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and soul and mind and strength, and love your neighbour as yourself’; and we endeavour to fulfil the Great Commission: ‘Go into all the world and preach the Gospel.’
We’re Evangelical – this word was first used during the 16th century Protestant Reformation to describe Christians who rediscovered the good news that God rescues people from sin by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. As evangelicals we celebrate that salvation is God‘s work alone, not a joint effort between God and man. The final authority for the evangelical is God’s written Word, the Bible, rather than church traditions, spiritual experiences, or human reason.
We’re Reformed – this word refers to a family of churches that adhere to one of the Reformed statements of faith produced in the 16th and 17th centuries. These detailed statements share a high view of God, Christ, the Bible, the created world, the church and the sacraments, and a low view of humanity in its rebellion against God. They are beneath the Bible’s authority, but beautifully summarise what the Bible says. The particular statement of faith the Presbyterian Church adheres to is the Westminster Confession of Faith.
We’re Presbyterian – this word refers to the specific way the church is governed. It comes from the Greek word presbuteros which means “elder”, and is a system to make sure our elders (church leaders) continue to hold to the Bible and our statement of faith. It makes them accountable to a wider group of elders from other churches, who have the power to remove them should their life or teaching fall short of what the Bible requires of them. The specific way a Presbyterian church works is set out in its book of church order known as the Code. If you want to know more about what Presbyterianism is, here’s an excellent article.
Grace Presbyterian Church is a congregation of the Presbyterian Church of Australia, a denomination with congregations throughout Australia. The Presbyterian Church of Australia also has relationships with similar denominations overseas. You can find out more about our denomination here.
Explore Christian Theology in Clear, Concise Language with Simply Put (Apple) (Spotify) (Stitcher)
Think Through the Big Questions at One Minute Apologetics (and on YouTube)
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