A Statement of Theological Position
As a Christian initiative, The Journey affirms…
The Nature of Christ
1.1. Jesus Christ is the physical expression of the eternal, transcendent, and triune God of the universe. To Him we owe the highest love, reverence, and obedience.
1.2. He is an intelligent, spiritual, and personal Being. He is the Creator, Redeemer, Preserver, and Ruler of the universe and all contained therein.
1.3. There is one and only one living and true God. He reveals Himself to us as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, with distinct personal attributes, but with no division of nature, essence, or being. God is infinite in holiness, justice, and all other perfections. God is all-powerful and all-knowing, and His perfect knowledge extends to all things, past, present, and future, including the future decisions of His free creatures.
1.4. God as Father reigns with providential care over His universe, His creatures, and the flow of the stream of human history according to the purposes of His grace. He is all-powerful, all-knowing, all-loving, all-wise, and His presence fills the universe He created. God is Father in truth to those who become children of God through faith in Jesus Christ. He is fatherly in His attitude toward all men.
1.5. Christ is the eternal Son of God. He possesses and embodies the full nature of God. In His incarnation as Jesus Christ, He was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born by the virgin Mary. Jesus perfectly revealed and did the will of God, taking upon Himself human nature with its demands and necessities, and in so doing, He identified Himself completely with mankind but without sin. He honored divine law by His personal obedience, and, in His substitutionary death on the cross, He made provision for the redemption of men from sin. He was raised from the dead with a glorified body and appeared to His disciples as the person who was with them before His crucifixion. He ascended into heaven and is now exalted at the right hand of God where He is the One Mediator, fully God, fully man, in whose Person is effected the reconciliation between God and man. He will return in power and glory to judge the world and to consummate His redemptive mission. He now dwells in all believers as the living and ever-present Lord.
1.6. The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God, fully divine. He inspired holy men of old to write the Scriptures. Through illumination He enables men to understand truth. He exalts Christ. He convicts men of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. He calls men to the Savior, and effects regeneration. At the moment of regeneration, He baptizes every believer into the Body of Christ. He cultivates Christian character, comforts believers, and bestows the spiritual gifts by which they serve God through His church. He seals the believer for the day of final redemption. His presence in the Christian is the guarantee that God will bring the believer into the fullness of the stature of Christ. He enlightens and empowers the believer and the church in worship, evangelism, and service.
The Ethic of Christ
2.1. The ethic of Jesus is love. The model of His self-less love is most perfectly demonstrated in His sacrificial and substitutionary death, burial, and resurrection and His offer of regeneration to individuals through His saving grace.
2.2. His love directs and defines interaction with all persons. All Christians are under obligation to seek to make the love of Christ supreme in our own lives and in human society. Means and methods used for the improvement of society and the establishment of righteousness among men can be truly and permanently helpful only when they are rooted in such love.
2.3. The self-less or other-focused nature of God’s love is defined in the person, work, and teaching of Christ and was introduced by Christ as a new way of conducting interpersonal relationships. “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” So important is this concept that Jesus declared it the basis by which his followers would be identified. “By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”
2.4. Modeling the ethic of Christ, Christians should oppose racism, every form of greed, selfishness, and vice, and all forms of sexual immorality, including adultery, homosexuality, and pornography. We should work to provide for the orphaned, the needy, the abused, the aged, the helpless, and the sick. We should speak on behalf of the unborn and contend for the sanctity of all human life from conception to natural death.
2.5. Every Christian should seek to bring industry, government, and society as a whole under the sway of the principles of righteousness, truth, and brotherly love. In order to promote these ends Christians should be ready to work with all persons of good will in any good cause, always being careful to act in the spirit of love without compromising their loyalty to Christ and His truth.
The Mission of Christ
3.1. The mission of Christ is to save the world from sin, offering reconciliation to God and eternal life to all persons who accept His salvation. It is the duty and privilege of every follower of Christ to participate in His mission, seeking constantly to win the lost to Christ by verbal witness undergirded by a Christian lifestyle, and by other methods in harmony with the gospel of Christ.
3.2. Man is the special creation of God, made in His own image. He created them male and female as the crowning work of His creation. The gift of gender is thus part of the intent and goodness of God's creation. In the beginning man was innocent of sin and was endowed by his Creator with freedom of choice. By his free choice man sinned against God and brought sin into the human race. Through the temptation of Satan man transgressed the command of God and fell from his original innocence whereby his posterity inherit a nature and an environment inclined toward sin. Therefore, as soon as they are capable of moral action, they become transgressors and are under condemnation. Only the grace of God can bring man into His holy fellowship and enable man to fulfill the creative purpose of God. The sacredness of human personality is evident in that God created man in His own image, and in that Christ died for man; therefore, every person of every race possesses full dignity and is worthy of respect and Christian love.
3.3. Salvation involves the redemption of the whole person and is offered freely to all who accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, who by His own blood obtained eternal redemption for the believer. In its broadest sense salvation includes regeneration, justification, sanctification, and glorification. There is no salvation apart from personal faith in Jesus Christ as Lord.
3.4. Regeneration, or the new birth, is a work of God’s grace whereby believers become new creatures in Christ Jesus. It is a change of heart wrought by the Holy Spirit through conviction of sin, to which the sinner responds in repentance toward God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Repentance and faith are inseparable experiences of grace.
3.5. Repentance is a genuine turning from sin toward God. Faith is the acceptance of Jesus Christ and commitment of the entire personality to Him as Lord and Savior.
3.6. Justification is God’s gracious and full acquittal, based upon His righteousness, of all sinners who repent and believe in Christ. Justification brings the believer into a relationship of peace and favor with God.
3.7. Sanctification is the experience, beginning in regeneration, by which the believer is set apart for God’s purposes, and is enabled to progress toward moral and spiritual maturity through the presence and power of the Holy Spirit dwelling in him. Growth in grace should continue throughout the regenerate person’s life.
3.8. Glorification is the culmination of salvation and is the final and eternal abiding state of the redeemed in the presence of God.
3.9. The Kingdom of God includes both His general sovereignty over the universe and His full authority over men who willfully acknowledge Him as King. Particularly, the kingdom is the realm of salvation into which men enter by trustful, childlike commitment to Jesus Christ. All Christians should pray and work toward the establishment of God’s kingdom and God’s will on earth. The full consummation of the kingdom will be realized upon the physical return to the earth of Jesus Christ.
The Revelation of Christ and His Authority Over Mankind
4.1. All understanding and values are defined in terms of the relationship of human beings to Christ as He is revealed in Holy Scripture. It is the responsibility of every believer to read, seek to understand, and follow the teachings of Scripture.
4.2. The Holy Bible was written by men divinely inspired and is God’s revelation of Himself to man. It is a perfect treasure of divine instruction. It has God for its author, salvation for its end, and truth, without any mixture of error, for its content.
4.3. Therefore, all Scripture is totally true and trustworthy. It reveals the principles by which God judges us, and therefore is, and will remain to the end of the world, the true description of Christian union, and the supreme standard by which all human conduct, creeds, and religious opinions should be judged. All Scripture is a testimony to Christ, who is Himself the focus of divine revelation.
Source: Statement of Christian Affirmation, University of Mobile