We believe that man was created in the image and likeness of God, but that through Adam’s sin the human race fell from its original good state, inherited a sinful nature, and became alienated from God; and that man is totally depraved and of himself utterly unable to remedy his lost condition (Gen. 1:26-27; Rom. 3:22-23; 5:12; Eph. 2:1-3, 12).
Why this is important:
Our understanding of the nature of humanity is crucial to our understanding of ministry. We believe that, as creatures made in God’s image, we are gifted by God with the attribute of creativity and that we are obligated to exercise this creativity to worship and glorify God.
We see the stain of humanity’s sinful condition and, therefore, humanity’s desperate need of salvation, but we acknowledge that these characteristics only serve to magnify the amazing beauty of God’s love. Man is blind in the darkness of sin, dead in trespasses, and thus totally incapable of finding his way, working his way, or buying his way to the Father, and yet God is gracious enough to save a multitude of people. God sent His Son to redeem sinners, and the Father and the Son send the Spirit to call sinners unto the promise of that redemption. In addition, God sends us to proclaim to all people the redemption that God offers in the Gospel. Through Christ we seek to emulate God’s love for the world by showing compassion toward sinful humanity and pursuing social justice in the hope that He will transform sinners into saints. In the broken and flawed state of the human condition, God meets the deepest longings of men and women only through Himself as they delight in His character and die to their old sinful nature.