What We Believe
We worship one God in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19). We hold that the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments are the only rule and norm for evaluating doctrine and practice (2 Timothy 3:15–17). To prepare people for membership and communion at Emmanuel, we use Luther’s Small Catechism as a summary of Holy Scripture and the Christian life. The great reformer Martin Luther (1483–1546) published this summary of the Christian faith in six statements drawn from Scripture:
The Ten Commandments
- “Thou shalt have no other gods before Me.”
- “Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord, thy God, in vain.”
- “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.”
- “Thou shalt honor thy father and thy mother, that it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.”
- “Thou shalt not kill.”
- “Thou shalt not commit adultery.”
- “Thou shalt not steal.”
- “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.”
- “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s house.”
- “Thou shalt not covet they neighbor’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his cattle, nor anything that is thy neighbor’s.” (Drawn from Exodus 20:3–17)
Regarding the commandments, God said:
“I, the Lord, thy God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generations of them that hate Me, and showing mercy unto thousands of them that love Me and keep My commandments.” (Exodus 20:5–6)
The Ten Commandments and Beatitudes are posted on the southeast corner of Emmanuel's property.
The Apostles’ Creed
I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth:
And in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord, Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary, Suffered under Pontius Pilate, Was crucified, dead, and buried: He descended into hell; The third day he rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, And sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Ghost; The Holy Christian Church, the Communion of Saints; The Forgiveness of sins; The Resurrection of the body, And the Life everlasting. Amen.
(The ancient creed is drawn from or based on numerous Bible passages, including the following: 2 Corinthians 6:18; Isaiah 51:13; John 3:16; Romans 1:3; Luke 1:35; Matthew 1:23; Luke 1:34; Mark 15:15; 1 Corinthians 15:4; Acts 2:27, 31; 1 Peter 3:18–19; 1 Corinthians 15:4; Luke 24:51; Acts 1:9, 11; Acts 2:34; Romans 8:34; Acts 10:42; 2 Timothy 4:1; Matthew 28:19; Ephesians 5:27; 1 Corinthians 1:2; Acts 26:18; 1 Corinthians 15:35–44; 1 Timothy 1:16. The congregation also uses the Nicene Creed and, once per year on Trinity Sunday, the Athanasian Creed.)
Emmanuel's processional cross reminds us of Jesus' sacrificial death for our salvation.
The Lord’s Prayer
Our Father, who art in heaven, Hallowed be thy Name, Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; And lead us not into temptation, But deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever. Amen. (Drawn from Matthew 6:9–13, with traditional doxology added)