WHAT WE BELIEVE
Christ Presbyterian Church is a Reformed and Presbyterian fellowship of believers meeting in west Knoxville.
Our purpose is to “glorify God and to enjoy him forever.” We have been brought by grace into the living body of Christ, the Church, in order to be a holy priesthood and called upon to offer spiritual sacrifices, even our own lives in service to God. Just as we have been graciously made God’s people, it is our desire to see others reconciled to God the Father through Jesus Christ the Son, and to see them and us growing together in faith through the power of the Holy Spirit.
Recognizing our children as members of God’s covenant and recipients of his promises, we include them in all aspects of corporate worship, including covenant communion (participation in the Lord’s Supper). Because God is faithful, we lay hold of his promise to be our God and God to our children and the generations to come. Based on God’s Word that the kingdom of Christ will continue to grow and to fill the earth as the waters cover the sea (in other words, completely), we have an optimistic view of the future of the Church and so it is a joy to proclaim, “Christ is Lord!”
Christ Presbyterian Church is a Reformed church. We are spiritual descendants of the great sixteenth-century Protestant Reformation. Indeed, the Protestant Reformation was in many ways a rediscovery of the biblical faith inscripturated in the pages of God’s Word, the Bible. As such, we stand with the historic Christian catholic faith.
We are committed to the great doctrines of the Protestant Reformation, frequently summarized by the Solas of the Reformation:
Sola Scriptura The ultimate authority for doctrine and life is Scripture alone
- All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work. (2 Tim 3:16, 17)
- Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. Your testimonies are my heritage forever, for they are the joy of my heart. (Ps 119:105, 111)
Sola Gratia Salvation is, from start to finish, all by God’s grace alone
- God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ – by grace you have been saved – and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. (Eph 2:4-7)
- All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ. (Rom 3:22, 23)
Sola Fide We are justified (declared right with God) by faith alone
- But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it — the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. (Rom 3:21-25)
- For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. (Rom 3:16, 18)
- For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. (Eph 2:8, 9)
- Since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. (Rom 5:1, 2)
Solus Christus Christ’s righteousness and work alone saves his people
- You know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich. (2 Cor 8:9)
- Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! (John 1:29)
- He was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all. (Isa 53:5, 6)
- Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift! (2 Cor 9:15)
Soli Deo Gloria All to the glory of God alone!
- For God has bound all men over to disobedience so that he may have mercy on them all. Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! “For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been his counselor?” “Or who has given a gift to him that he might be repaid?” For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen. (Rom 11:32-36)
- Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen. (Eph 3:20, 21)
Our Confession of Faith
CPC has adopted the Apostles’ Creed, the Nicene Creed, the Definition of Chalcedon, and the Westminster Confession of Faith as setting forth the system of doctrine presented in the Bible. The elders at CPC must subscribe to these historic documents.
For a brief summary of the Reformed understanding of God’s Word, we refer you to A Brief Summary of Our Confession of Faith.
Communion of Reformed Evangelical Churches (CREC)
To be a Presbyterian church indicates that we are governed and led by a group of men called by God’s people to serve as elders who oversee Christ’s flock in a particular location. Congregations do not exist independently from others but are organized in graded courts (such as the U.S. Court system, which is based on this biblical pattern). CPC belongs to the Communion of Reformed Evangelical Church (CREC).
Athanasius Presbytery is made up of congregations from the Southeastern United States that are members of the CREC.