PC(USA) Beliefs

What We Believe

God: We believe there is one God, eternally existing in three persons—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. God created, redeems, and sustains the universe in sovereign righteousness and infinite love.

Jesus: We believe Jesus to be the second person of the Trinity, fully God and fully human. He was conceived by the Holy Spirit. He embodies God’s grace. Doing for us what we could not do for ourselves. He died and rose again to bring salvation to all who believe in Him. We await His return to earth to fulfill history and establish God’s eternal Kingdom.

Holy Spirit: We believe the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Trinity, continually prays for, renews, transforms, and empowers believers. The Holy Spirit gives assurance, strength, wisdom, and spiritual gifts that we might lead a Christ-like life and be fruitful to God’s glory.

Bible: We believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God for all people. As our source of truth, it provides guidance for Christian faith and life.

Humankind: We believe that men and women are made in the image of God and created to worship and serve their Creator. Acknowledging our sinfulness, we believe that salvation is a gift from God through Christ and is the path to redemption and restored relationship with God.

The Church: We believe all who profess faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior are united as members of His Body, the Church. All believers are called to be ministers and to advance God’s Kingdom on earth by embodying God’s love for each other and the world.

Salvation through Grace: As Reformed Protestants, we believe we are saved by grace through faith. We believe we are brought to this right relationship not by our own effort or initiative but by the grace of God and by the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ on the Cross.

Sacraments: We believe and practice the sacraments of Baptism and The Lord’s Supper (Communion).
Baptism is the sign and seal of incorporation into Christ. Jesus through His own baptism identified himself with sinners in order to fulfill all righteousness.
The Lord’s Supper is the sign and seal of eating and drinking in communion with the crucified and risen Lord. During His earthly ministry Jesus shared meals with His followers as a sign of community and acceptance and as an occasion for His own ministry.

Other Beliefs: We believe a balanced Christian life includes worship, fellowship, education, stewardship, and outreach. People matter to God and so they matter to us. We are called to share an unchanging message with an ever changing world.

Historical Creeds and Governance: All of our beliefs are grounded in Scripture. The Constitution of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) consists of the Book of Confessions (Part I) and The Book of Order (Part II).

The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) also uses the following historical creeds found in The Book of Confessions to provide historical context for Biblical interpretations.

  • Nicene Creed (325/381 AD)
  • Apostles’ Creed (second to sixth century)
  • Scots Confession (1560)
  • Heidelberg Catechism (1563)
  • Second Helvetic Confession (1566)
  • Westminster Confession of Faith (1647)
  • Westminster Shorter Catechism (1647)
  • Westminster Larger Catechism (1647)
  • Theological Declaration of Barmen (1935)
  • Confession of 1967 (1967)
  • Belhar Confession (1986)
  • A Brief Statement of Faith (1991)

The Book of Order contains The Foundations of Presbyterian Polity, the Form of Government, the Directory for Worship and the Rules of Discipline.