what we believe
ALTHOUGH WE COME from diverse social, educational, economic, and cultural backgrounds, at Cates Hill Chapel we share a common set of basic beliefs. We realize that while Christians differ on minor points of doctrine (of which there are many!), certain convictions regarding our faith are foundational. It is these convictions which comprise our "statement of faith."
We believe that through the Bible God has revealed what we need to know about Him and His purposes for us. He has revealed Himself as loving, good, holy, perfect, eternal, all-powerful, all-knowing, everywhere-present, sovereign, just, forgiving, and merciful. He has also revealed Himself as triune, that is, the one God exists in three persons in mysterious relationship with each other: Father, Son, and Spirit.
God created the universe, and called it good. He created human beings for loving relationship with Him, to bear His image in this world as male and female together, to freely choose how we shall live, and to tend the earth as stewards.
However, our relationship with Him is not as it was intended. We have not chosen to love God or our neighbours wholly; rather, we have chosen to go our own way. We recognize this condition as sin.
The good news is that God has not left us on our own. He chose Abraham and Sarah to found a nation through which blessing would come to all nations. He further revealed His love, wisdom, and desire for us through the Scriptures, and ultimately in His only Son, Jesus Christ. He became human, taught and modeled how we should live, did not sin, voluntarily died on the cross for us and rose again so that all who believe in Him might be forgiven and healed, restored to a right relationship with God, and saved from being eternally separated from Him.
Jesus ascended to heaven, and until His return He has left His Spirit to give new spiritual life to His followers, as well as guide and help them to love and obey Him. In response to the commands of Jesus, 1) we practice baptism as a symbol of our death to the old way of life and participation in the gift of His new life; 2) we remember Him in the sharing of bread and cup each week; and 3) we play our part in sharing His good news with the world.
Based on His promise, we live with the hope that Jesus Christ will return as Lord, judge of all, and creator of a new heaven and new earth. Then He will perfect His own that we may enjoy, be with, worship, and serve God forever.