I’m sometimes asked about where I stand on various issues, so I thought I’d summarize my positions here, with links to longer statements, articles, or other resources where necessary.
I also recently wrote a brief, modern confession for use at Grace Hills Church in worship:
We believe in one God, the Almighty,
Creator of heaven and earth,
Source of all life and all love.
We believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son,
Fully God, fully human,
Savior of the world,
The risen King of kings.
We believe in the Holy Spirit,
The very breath and power of God,
Sustainer of our life in Christ.
We believe in the church, Christ’s body,
God’s family for the spirituality homeless,
Called to be Love and Light,
To pursue justice and show mercy,
To proclaim the Good News of Christ,
To work for the common good of humanity.
I believe in the Trinity, that the Almighty God, Creator of heaven and earth, eternally exists in the three persons of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and that all three are co-equal in deity.
Jesus Christ is eternally God, incarnated in human form via conception by the Holy Spirit in the womb of the virgin, Mary. He lived sinlessly, died for the sins of mankind, and rose again literally and bodily and now reigns as King.
The Bible is inspired and authoritative. Jesus Christ himself is the final “word of God” for us, and the Bible points us to him. The church’s founding pre-dates the existence of the New Testament as we know it. I find value in both the historical-grammatical and historical-critical approaches to interpretation.
Salvation is by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone with no mixture of works or human effort, and that salvation by grace is permanent. Every believer is eternally secure.
I am not a Calvinist. Nor am I an Arminianist, believing that neither system gives adequate balance to the issues of God’s total sovereignty or the free will of man. Both systems arise in part from the Enlightenment emphasis on individualism.
I am not a proponent of a strict, literal six-day creationist view of Genesis. I believe that creationary evolution is a possibility and bears no threat to the Genesis record, which I believe was never intended to present a detailed scientific record of the origin of the physical world.
I am an egalitarian in my views on gender. Male and female are certainly complementary in nature, but equal in value. I believe the emphasis in the New Testament is on mutuality and partnership and not hierarchy or authority structures.
I believe that both men and women are equally welcome to preach, to teach, to pastor, to serve as missionaries and evangelists, and to serve in any capacity within the church that lines up with their calling, giftedness, and character.
I am pro-life and believe that Christians should seek the welfare of all people.
I believe we should strive to welcome strangers through legal immigration and a robust refugee resettlement program.
I believe we must address our culture of gun violence head-on, even if it means restricting our freedoms by limiting access to certain kinds of guns and ammunition.
I believe systemic racism definitely exists and that the fruit of the gospel should be Christians who work for social and racial justice. We still have a long way to go before people of every color enjoy equality of opportunity and justice.
I also support law enforcement officers who serve and protect with integrity and who refuse to be complicit in systemic injustice.
I am a continuationist and believe that all of the biblical gifts of the Spirit are available to the church today, including tongues (rightly understood), prophecy, healing, etc.
I consider myself an amillennialist, believing that Jesus Christ’s return is imminent. I am a preterist in my interpretation of the Revelation, believing that most of the chapters of the last book of the Bible refer to events that occurred during the first century of Christianity.