All congregations of the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod have pledged their acceptance of the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments as the very Word of God and the source of all teaching and practice. We believe that the Bible is without error or contradiction.
In the 16th century, Martin Luther, a German monk, made his stand on the Word, stripping away human traditions and requirements that had drawn attention away from God's truth. Our beliefs on what the Scriptures teach are explained in the Lutheran confessional writings in the Book of Concord.
From the Word, we know that there is one God, but that he has three persons - Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. They are of the same essense - equal in power, in eternity, and in majesty.
We believe the Father created and sustains the world. The Scriptures tell us that human beings chose to follow their own way and fell into sin - direct disobedience to God. Since God is just, He must punish sin. The Bible tells us that the wages of sin is death - both physical death and eternal death in hell.
We also believe that Jesus Christ, true God and true man, suffered and died on earth as punishment for the sins of all mankind. He lived in perfect obedience to God. He was without sin. It is only because of him - not becuase of anything we do - that our perfect relationship with God is restored through the forgiveness of sin. Then God counts the righteous life of Jesus as if we lived it.
We believe that the Holy Spirit inspired the writers of the Bible and through it inspires faith in us. Through the Word and Sacrament - Holy Baptism and the Lord's Supper - He also keeps us in faith. Because Baptism is a tool that the Holy Spirit uses to forgive sin, and grant faith and life, it is administered to young and old alike - trusting God to do what He promises.
Three principles undergird our beliefs: Scripture, Faith, and Grace. The Scripture is the only source of knowledge about God and his will for us. Grace tells us that as human beings we cannot earn God's love, forgiveness, or everlasting life. It is all a gift of his love. Only by faith in Jesus Christ do we receive forgiveness.
And in faith, we wait for Jesus to come again on the last day when all the dead will be resurrected and all believers in Christ will rejoice forever with Him in heaven.