December 06, 2009
The Confession of the Unity of the Bohemian Brethren states that the Church can realize her mission in the world only when she continues by faith in her Head - Jesus Christ, who is her foundation and who preserves her and leads her through unto the end. Today we examine the final six articles of the Confession of the Unity of the Bohemian Brethren of 1662. They are: Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, Justification, the Church, Mission and the Second Coming.
We believe that Jesus Christ, God's Son, became true man at His birth (John 1:14; Heb. 2:14). By His substitutionary death on the cross He took upon Himself our sins and so reconciled us to God (Col. 1:20-22). By His resurrection and Ascension he conquered over all forces of evil and became Lord of the whole world and Head of the Church (Eph. 1:20, 22; Mark 16:19; Phil. 2:9-11).
The Holy Spirit
We believe that at Pentecost God, through Jesus Christ, sent the Holy Spirit (Act 2:33), who convicts people of sin (John 16:8), leads them to repentance and faith in Christ, and so transforms them into new creations (2 Cor . 5:17; Rom 8:2). Regeneration expresses itself in the bearing of the fruit of the Spirit, first of all in love towards God and man (Gal. 5:22). After the new birth (John 3:5, Titus 3:5) believers are empowered and filled by the Holy Spirit (Eph. 5:19); and they receive gifts (1 Cor. 12:4-11) for efficacious ministry in the Church and the world (2 Tim. 1:6-7, 2:1).
We believe that all who confess and forsake their sins and believe in Christ receive justification from God and a secure salvation (Rom. 5:1). Thus, justification is solely by faith in Jesus Christ (Gal. 3:26), devoid of personal merits (Gal. 2:16). It is impossible to attain salvation by any other means (Acts 4:12).
We believe that God, in history, called Israel and assembled together His people. Jesus Christ established on earth a people of the new covenant (1Cor. 11:25) and He builds them up among all nations as His Church (Matt. 16:18). Therefore, it is the prerogative of all believers to express their membership in the Church by entering into a bond with one of its branches (Acts 2:41). In so doing, they publicly confess their faith (Rom. 10:9f), receive Holy Baptism and Holy Communion (Matt. 28:19; Mark 16:16), and participate in the gift of brotherly fellowship in which they are mutually encouraged and admonished (Acts 2:42; Heb. 10:24f), serve one another (Eph. 4:15-16) and submit themselves to the appointed leaders (Heb. 13:17) and one another (Eph. 5:21f).
We believe that the Church is called to be the salt of the earth and the light of the world (Matt. 5:13). By her service, she helps people in material and moral poverty and announces to them the salvation in our Savior Jesus Christ. Those who receive the Gospel are disciples of Jesus Christ, being baptized and taught to obey all that the Lord Jesus commanded (Matt. 28:19f).
The Second Coming
We believe that Jesus Christ will come in His glory (1 Thess. 1:10; Phil. 3:20; 1Pet. 4:13) in order to establish the eternal kingdom of god, where God will be all in all (1 Cor. 15:28; Rev. 19:6). We believe that all the righteous will be resurrected unto everlasting life and the ungodly unto judgment and everlasting punishment (John 5:28-29; Matt. 25:34, 41, 46).