- Loving God by faithfully gathering with his people to worship Him (Heb. 10:19-25).
- Loving others by being a welcoming and caring community to all (1 John 3:11-20)
- Growing in relationship with God through the regular study and application of the Bible (2 Tim. 3:14-16)
- Growing in community with others through a grow group (Col. 3:12-17)
- Serving God by joyfully sharing Jesus Christ with the world (Isaiah 61:1-2)
- Serving and supporting others with practical, hands-on service (Isaiah 61:3-4).
The Evangelical Covenant Church seeks to form and nurture communities that are deeply committed to Jesus Christ and passionately engaged in Christ's mission in the world. The purpose of Covenant Affirmations is to make clear the values and principles that have guided the Evangelical Covenant Church since its founding in 1885.
The Evangelical Covenant Church comes out of historical Christianity through the Protestant Reformation. The church's distinctive spirit has been further shaped by our early origins in the Lutheran Church of Sweden, the great spiritual awakenings of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and the more recent North American renewal movements. The Evangelical Covenant Church is committed to reaching across boundaries of race, ethnicity, culture, gender, age, and status. For Covenant people, our essential beliefs are summed up in what we call Covenant Affirmations:
We affirm the centrality of the Word of God.
We believe the Bible is the only perfect rule for faith, doctrine, and conduct. The dynamic, transforming power of the word of God directs the church and the life of each Christian.
We affirm the necessity of the new birth.
New birth in Christ means committing ourselves to him and receiving forgiveness, acceptance, and eternal life.(2 Corinthians 5:17) New birth is only the beginning. Growing to maturity in Christ is a lifelong process for both individuals and communities of believers.
We affirm a commitment to the whole mission of the Church.
The covenant church is a people of shared faith who came together to carry out God's mission both far and near. Mission includes evangelism, Christian formation, and ministries of compassion, mercy, and justice. We follow Christ's two central calls. The Great Commission sends us out into all the world to make disciples. The Great Commandment calls us to love the Lord our God and our neighbors as ourselves.
We affirm the Church as a fellowship of believers.
Membership is by confession of personal faith in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. It is open to all believers. .The church is not an institution, organization, or building. It is a grace-filled fellowship of believers who participate in the life and mission of Jesus Christ. It is a family of equals: as the New Testament teaches that within Christian community there is to be neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, but all are one in Christ Jesus (Galatians 3:28).
We affirm a conscious dependence on the Holy Spirit.
The Covenant Church affirms the Trinitarian understanding of one God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit instills in our hearts a desire to turn to Christ, and who assures us that Christ dwells within us. The Holy Spirit enables our obedience to Christ and conforms us to his image, and it is the Spirit in us that enables us to continue Christ's mission in the world.
We affirm the reality of freedom in Christ.
The freedom is a gift of God in Christ, and it manifests itself in a right relationship with God and others. It is not a private gift to be used selfishly, but is given to serve the community and the world. This freedom means that we are set free from the power of those things that on their own tend to divide. We in the Covenant Church seek to focus on what unites us as followers of Christ, rather than on what divides us.
To find out more about the Covenant Affirmations or what the larger Covenant family is doing, please check out the links below.