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FAQ

Questions and Answers about the Affirmation of Faith

 

Q.    Where did it come from? 

A.     The Affirmation of Faith was adopted by the Beaver-Butler Presbytery on January 26, 2002.  It is based on a culmination of Scripture and the Presbyterian Church (USA)’s Book of Confessions.

 

Q.    What is the basis for this affirmation?

A.     This affirmation of faith is based off of two sources: the Bible and the Presbyterian Church (USA)’s Book of Confessions.  Each statement contained in this document is supported by Scripture and/or the Book of Confessions, which itself is an interpretation of Scripture. The affirmation does not contain any statements or concepts that are not present in the Bible. 

 

Questions and Answers about Section 1

 

Q.    Is Jesus Christ the only way to receive salvation?

A.     Yes, the Bible makes it abundantly clear that forgiveness of sins, salvation, and eternal life are only made available through Jesus Christ.  That is why it is imperative that we spread the good news of Jesus Christ.  Salvation is a gift of God to all who trust and accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. 

 

Q.    What about the other religions of the world?

A.    We profess that Jesus Christ is the only way.  We are reminded in the Book of        

     Acts 2:12, “there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under       

     heaven by which we must be saved.”

           

            Q. Can I earn salvation by doing good deeds?

A.  No, salvation is a gift of God’s grace that comes by believing and trusting in    

    Jesus Christ.   We are saved only by faith in Jesus, not by doing good deeds. 

 

Questions and Answers about Section 2

 

Q.    Who wrote the Bible?

A.     The Bible was “written” by many hands.  The Bible is made up of 66 different books.  The Old Testament consists of 39 books and the New Testament consists of 27 books.  Many of these books were written by different people in different times and places.  Although these books were written by different human hands, the Spirit of God inspired them all. 

 

Q.     What does it mean that the Bible is authoritative? 

A.     The Bible is a gift from God to His people.  Because it is God’s own Word, it carries authority in and for our lives.  The Bible teaches what Christians are to believe and shows how we are to live.  Every Christian should read and study the Bible.  This study allows us to know what we are to believe about God and how we should live our lives. 

 

Q.    The Bible was written a long time ago, is it still relevant?

A.    Yes, though the Bible is an ancient text, it is much more than an historical  

      document.  The Bible was inspired by God who made these Holy Scriptures as

      relevant for modern times as they were in the first century. 

 

Questions and Answers about Section 3

 

Q.    What does it mean to be holy? 

A.     Holy means that one is set apart for service, anointed, righteous, or blameless. 

 

Q.    Do I have to be perfect because I am Christian?

A.    No, only Jesus Christ was perfect.  No one else can live in perfect obedience to God without sin.  In fact, Romans 3:23 tells us that ALL have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.  But Christians respond to the good news of salvation by striving to live as Jesus lived.  We try to live in obedience to God’s will.  When we fail, we confess our sin and continue striving.  As Christians, we are enabled and empowered by the Holy Spirit to resist the sin in our lives.  As we grow closer to God in faith, we become better able to resist sin.  This long process is called sanctification, when we are slowly molded and shaped by the Holy Spirit.  One is not completely sanctified or made perfect until the next life. 

 

Q.    How can the church be a “holy nation”? 

A.     The church is made up of all followers of Jesus Christ.  We are one collective community, brothers and sisters in Christ.  As a community, we live in and engage this world.  But we also remember that we are called to change the world by proclaiming the hope of the gospel.  The church is called to be “holy” or set apart from the world.  The church serves as a beacon summoning others to hear the good news of the gospel. 

 

Q.    What is “anarchy in sexual relationships”? 

A.     The Bible is the authoritative word of God and serves as our rule of faith and living.  Through his word, God sets forth the ordering of familial relationships.  This states that sexual intimacy is to occur only between a man and a woman who are married to one another.  Any other type of sexual relationship whether heterosexual or homosexual is outside the bounds of scripture and is sinful. 

 

Q.    Is this type of sin worse than any other? 

A.    No, anarchy in sexual relationship is no worse than any other type of sin.  That is why it is essential that we must not judge one another or treat each other harshly.  “For we all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 2:23).  As Christians we are called to share the gospel in Christian love and urge others to repent and confess the same way that we repent and confess our sin.

 

Q.    Should I treat people differently because of their relationships or sexual orientation?

A.    No.  Remember that although that person’s actions are offensive to God, they     

     are still deeply loved by God just as you are.  Also remember that none of us

                 are perfect.  God does however desire all people to experience the freedom of

                 new life in Christ.  Speak the truth in love by sharing what the Bible tells us

                 and urge repentance.  Judging or mistreating someone in God’s name is

                 equally offensive.  Instead, choose to share the love and compassion of Christ. 

 

 
Created by Rev. Randall K. Clow, February 2007
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