The Bible is the Word of God, and the only certain word in this world. It is without error (inerrant); therefore, we base all our teaching on the Bible. Many Christians (even Lutherans) have abandoned the Bible as their guide, but at Saint John, the Bible has the final word.
Because we are biblical, we are also Lutheran. Back in the 16th century, the church had strayed from the Word of God, adding teachings based on human opinion. Martin Luther, a Catholic priest, read the Bible and taught that the church needed to return to its teachings. Lutherans are Christians who agree with Martin Luther, that the church needs to teach as Jesus and His apostles taught. The teachings we find in the Bible have been written down in the Book of Concord and the Small Catechism. A Lutheran is one who agrees that the doctrines (teachings) in these books are exactly what the Bible says.
Christianity believes God is a Holy Trinity. This means He is One, indivisible God, but that He is also three Persons – Father, Son and Holy Spirit (Holy Ghost). It is a divine mystery how God is both three and one at the same time. This True God is not to be confused with other gods, such as the god of the Jews or the Muslims. The Triune God is the Creator of all that exists. He expects His creatures to live perfectly (Matthew 5:48) according to His Law, and punishes in hell all who fail. But He loves us and has provided us with a way to be forgiven. To learn that way of forgiveness, please see ‘Evangelical.’
Evangelical means “of the Gospel” and the first group to receive this name was the Lutherans! The Gospel is the good news that God has not left us in our sins. God the Son (Jesus) became a man so that He could live a perfect life in our place, die on the cross for our sins and be raised to life again to prove all our sins are forgiven. This is true, and all who trust this gospel are forgiven and will live forever with God in heaven’s peace and joy. We are evangelical because the forgiveness of sins is central in all we do.
In the Bible, God the Holy Spirit tells us that He comes to us in certain ways to strengthen our faith and deliver forgiveness of sins to us. We call these ways the Means (or ways) of Grace (God’s free gift of forgiveness). The Means of Grace are God’s Word, Baptism, Holy Absolution and the Lord’s Supper (Holy Communion). At Saint John our worship life revolves around the Means of Grace.
We don’t believe worship is the time for entertainment; you get enough of that during the week. Instead, worship is a time for reverence as God comes to us. Therefore, we worship using the liturgy handed down to us from our forefathers.
Traditional. At Saint John, you won’t need to worry that our worship practices or our beliefs will change from week to week. In a world of constant change, worship services here provide a solid, unchanging foundation you can count on, for yourself and your children.