Along with almost every other Christian communion or denomination, we believe:
• in God, revealed through scripture as the trinity—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—three in one;
• that all people are sinful and in need of forgiveness, redemption, and salvation through Jesus Christ;
• that we experience this salvation by grace through faith;
• that we experience God’s love through the activity of the Holy Spirit, both in our personal lives and in the life of our faith community;
• that believers will share in Jesus Christ’s resurrection and be raised to eternal life; and
• that the Holy Bible is authoritative in matters of faith.
Like any other denomination, we United Methodists and our neighbors in the theological tradition of John Wesley, have some distinctive nuances and emphases. For example, we believe:
• that all the credit and glory for our lives of faith belongs to God, acting in grace:
• through “prevenient grace,” God calls us toward him, so that we long to please him, realize our sin, and seek his salvation;
• through “justifying grace,” God assures us that we are forgiven and that he has given us the gift of eternal salvation;
• through “sanctifying grace,” God calls us to become increasingly Christ-like, constantly growing in our love for God and neighbors;
• that God’s sanctifying grace calls us to live disciplined lives, characterized by holy habits that enable us to grow closer to God and to neighbors in love;
• that faith is the only necessary response for our salvation, but faith always reveals itself in good works; and
• that we always experience and reveal our personal salvation within the context of community.