Faith Frontiers

Understanding Belief and Practice

There are many Christian denominations.  Each is distinctive with a particular system of beliefs, practices, and traditions.  God speaks to us through the witness of our churches.  God reveals Himself through these beliefs and practices, which are important from the standpoint of knowing God.  But He saves us through our "faithing."  It is by God’s grace we are saved, through our willingness to trust and rely and commit ourselves to Him.  The community of faith, as a church, teaches us to live as faithful people.

What all Christians share in common, regardless of denominational differences, is God’s salvation through faith (trust and reliance) in the redemptive work of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection.  Jesus has redeemed us from sin.  A Christian not only believes this to be true but also trusts God to fulfill this promise given us in Christ.

Sin, therefore, is our willful rebellion against God’s will.  Sin is an act of distrusting God and trusting more in ourselves.  The act of doing what we desire rather than what God commands separates us from God.  The Apostle Paul said that all have sinned and fallen short of what God expects of us, that which glorifies God.

The good news is, in spite of sin, God loves us and gave His Son to die for us and redeem us.  If we believe and trust that Jesus’ sacrificial death on a cross was for us personally and change our rebellious attitude, God forgives us and restores us to a right relationship with Him.  It is this relationship with the CREATOR that is life-giving.

Even though Jesus said, "Your sins are forgiven; go and sin no more," we continue to struggle with wanting to do things our way rather than God’s way.  Therefore, trusting in Jesus’ redemptive work goes on in our lives each day through repentance and change.  It is this daily struggle that makes faith an adventure.