Pastor Eric’s Teaching and Preaching Values
1) The Lord Jesus Christ
I believe and confess our faith in the Triune God — Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. I trust and believe in Jesus Christ as our Savior and Lord.
Jesus came and said to them, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.’ (Matthew 28:18-20)
2) The Gospel of Salvation
I believe and confess that all human beings are sinners, and that sinners are redeemed by the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. God alone justifies human beings by faith in Christ — a faith which God creates through the message of the Gospel. As ambassadors for Christ, God uses us to speak His Word and build His kingdom.
There is no distinction, since all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God; they are now justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a sacrifice of atonement by his blood, effective through faith. (Romans 5:22b-25)
There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among mortals by which we must be saved. (Acts 4:12)
3) The Authority of Scripture
I teach and preach that the Bible is God's revealed Word to us, spoken in Law and Gospel. The Bible is the final authority for us in all matters of faith and life.
All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, so that everyone who belongs to God may be equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
Jesus said: “Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.” (John 17:17)
4) A Common Confession of Faith
I teach and preach that the Lutheran Confessions reliably guide us as a faithful interpretation of Scripture, that we share a unity and fellowship in faith with others among whom the Gospel of Jesus Christ is preached, and that the sacraments are administered in accordance with the Gospel.
There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to the one hope of your calling, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all and through all and in all. (Ephesians 4:4-6)
But as for you, continue in what you have learned and firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it, and how from childhood you have known the sacred writings that are able to instruct you for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. (2 Timothy 3:14-15)
5) The Priesthood of All Believers
I teach and preach that the Holy Spirit makes all who believe in Jesus Christ to be priests for service to others in Jesus' name, and that God desires to make use of the spiritual gifts he has given through the priesthood of all believers.
By the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of yourself more highly than you ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned. For as in one body we have many members, and not all the members have the same function, so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually we are members one of another. We have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us: prophecy, in proportion to faith; ministry, in ministering; the teacher, in teaching; the exhorter, in exhortation; the giver, in generosity; the leader, in diligence; the compassionate, in cheerfulness. (Romans 12:3-8)
6) Marriage and Family
I teach and preach that the marriage of male and female is an institution created and blessed by God. From marriage, God forms families to serve as the building blocks of all human civilization and community. I teach and preach that sexual activity belongs within the biblical boundaries of a faithful marriage between one man and one woman.
Jesus said: “From the beginning of creation, 'God made them male and female.' 'For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.' So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate." (Mark 10: 6-8)
7) The Mission and Ministry of the Congregation.
I teach and preach that the church is the assembly of believers called and gathered by God around Word and Sacrament, and that the mission and ministry of the church is carried out within the context of individual congregations, which are able to work together locally and globally.
Just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body — Jews or Greeks, slaves or free — and we were all made to drink of one Spirit… Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it. (1 Corinthians 12:12-13, 27)
We welcome all people to Zion Lutheran. The seven statements are provided as a list of my teaching and preaching core values.