Lutheran Beliefs
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WHAT LUTHERANS

DONíT Ė AND DO Ė BELIEVE

By Bertram Gilbert

 

  1. Lutherans donít believe that we can get to heaven by doing good things.

Lutherans do believe that, having been made aware of Godís love, we will do good. Thatís one way of recognizing Christians.

 

  1. We donít believe that you can prove there is a God by natural evidence and reason.

We do believe both evidence and reason can back up what we have come to believe in faith.

 

  1. We donít believe that Martin Luther started our church.

We Lutherans are small ďcĒ catholics who believe that Christís

church has continued from his day to ours. The Lutheran movement is part of the whole catholic or universal church.

 

  1. We donít believe that people have to be old or smart enough to make up their own minds before they can be baptized and become part of Godís family.

We believe that just as we accept babies as our own, naming them with our own family names and, if we can help it, never letting them feel motherless or fatherless, so God in baptism includes them in his family and kingdom.

 

  1. We donít believe that everything that happens was going to happen and that everything we do is independent of our own decisions.

We believe that god made us free creatures and that we live in a world where much goes on which is counter to his will. We are responsible in the sense that we are meant to respond to his love.

 

  1. We donít believe in reincarnation Ė that is, that after death we will come back in this world another body.

We do believe that we are destined to live in a heavenly realm in a form which will be like the resurrected Jesus.

 

  1. We donít believe that the whole creation came into being by chance or simply by the interaction of natural forces.

We believe in a God who is outside of but in control of natural forces. He is the one who created it allóincluding the natural forces.

 

  1. We donít believe that Jesus was simply an exceptionally good man who set a wonderful example for us to follow.

We believe he was God in actual human form and that, because he was, he could by dying for us overcome human sin and death.

 

  1. We donít believe that people can do very well in Godís sight and in favor with their neighbors without the church, even though some solitary saints may be found here and there.

We believe that everything in Scripture and Christian experience points to cooperation, fellowship and communion in an honest to goodness organization. Just as Christ became a flesh-and-blood human so his church becomes a real union of his people.

 

  1. We donít believe that Communion is only a way of remembering that Jesus died for us.

While we do indeed remember in Communion, we believe that through this sacrament we receive forgiveness of sins; Christ really enters us nourishing us and making us one with him and fellow believers.