Our Beliefs

Orangewood Church is a member congregation of the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA), and we subscribe to the Westminster Confession of Faith.

Our Beliefs

The Bible:

We believe that the Bible is inspired by God, and is without error in the original manuscripts. It is our only authority for faith and life.1

This means that we look to the Bible for truth, understanding, and practical guidance on how we should live, think, and interact with those around us.

 

God:

We believe that there is only one God, and in him are three persons: the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. While these persons are distinct, they are still only one God. He created and preserves all things. He is all-powerful, merciful, just, gracious, holy, and true.2

This means that we can trust him in every way. Since he made us, we trust that he knows us fully. Since he is all-powerful, we can trust that he is able to help us. Since he is merciful, we can trust in his forgiveness. Since he is true, we can trust his word.

 

Humanity:

We believe that people are created in the image of God. Originally, mankind was perfect, but then Adam sinned. This sin separated him from God and left him with a darkened heart and mind. Because Adam was the representative of all humanity, his sin affected all of us. So now, all people are born into a state of sin and opposition to God.3

This means that, because of our rebellious nature, we can’t come to God on our own. Instead, he must awaken our hearts, and call us to himself.

 

Jesus:

Jesus Christ, who is both fully God and fully man, came to Earth in order to reconcile sinful humanity with God. Just as Old Testament priests offered sacrifices, Jesus offered the greatest sacrifice of all: himself. Jesus chose to be born as a human, to live a perfect life, and to die a sacrificial death in order to pay for mankind’s many sins. He was buried, and then rose from the grave. Now in heaven, he acts as mediator for his people, interceding on our behalf.4

This means, as Christians, that we can live, pray, and worship boldly. Jesus has made a way for us to come before a holy God. We know that God cares, and that he hears us, because Jesus himself is interceding for us.

 

Salvation

We believe that God awakens the hearts of sinners, enabling and calling his people to believe. He credits Christ’s perfect life and death to us, and then choses to see Christ’s righteousness instead of seeing our sin. Then, God progressively works in our lives to make us more and more like Christ.5

This means that we can have hope. God has said that he will never abandon or forsake us. Even as we struggle with the realities of our sin, we look forward to the coming day when he will make all things new.

 

Grace, Faith, and Repentance:

We believe that God freely extends his grace—or unmerited favor— to us. One of the chief ways this grace is expressed is through faith. Through this free gift, we come to understand the truth of scripture. Faith also leads us to accept and rest in the finished work of Christ on our behalf. It leads us to repent of our sins, and to walk in a manner worthy of our salvation.6

This means that we can know peace. God is the main actor in our lives, and he not only produces our faith, but enables our faith to be expressed fully and freely. So we can repent freely, strive to be godly, and trust that God will work.

 

The Church

We believe that there is one church—one people of God—consisting of everyone (past, present, and future) who has been saved through faith in Christ. God calls his church to gather together in worship, and to observe two sacraments: baptism and the Lord’s supper.7

This means that community is important. Worshipping together reminds us that we are not alone.  Even as God has called us to love and serve him, he calls us to love and serve those around us.

 

Final Things

We believe that all people will be resurrected from the dead. Christ will come a second time to judge all people; then God will punish the wicked and introduce believers into glory, where we will be with him forever.8

This means that believers can anticipate a glorious future in a renewed and restored world. The day is coming when our strivings and struggles will cease, and we will know eternal peace.

 

1. 2 Pet 1:21; Matt 5:18; 2 Tim 3:16

2. Deut 6:4; 1 Cor 8:6; Job 11:7-9; Acts 17:24-25; 1 John 5:7; Matt 28:19

3. Gen 1:27-31; Gen 3:6-8; Rom 3:12; Rom 5:12-14

4. 1 Tim 2:5; John 1:1; John 1:14; Heb 4:15; Rom 5:19; Phil 2:8; Rom 5:10-11; Rom 8:34

5. Rom 3:24; Rom 5:8-10; 1 John 1:9; Phil 3:10-14

6. Eph 2:8; 1 John 5:4-5; Heb 10:39-11:1; Rom 1:16-17

7. Eph 4:5; Heb 10:25; 13:15; Matt 28:19; 1 Cor 11:23-26

8. Rom 14:10; Matt 13:40-42; Rom 9:22-23

 


Our Distinctives

Reformed

We heartily affirm the five ‘Solas’ of the protestant reformation:

  • Sola Scriptura: The Bible alone is our highest authority.
  • Sola Fide: We are saved through faith alone in Jesus Christ.
  • Sola Gratia: We are saved by the grace of God alone.
  • Solus Christus: Jesus Christ alone is our Lord, Savior, and King.
  • Soli Deo Gloria: We live for the glory of God alone.

Covenantal

We believe that the Bible contains one unifying story, and is marked by a series of covenants made by God to man. Jesus, as the Son of God and the sacrifice given for our sin, is our ultimate covenant maker and keeper.

Presbyterian

The term presbyterian refers to a system of church government overseen by member-elected elders. We are part of the Central Florida Presbytery, which is the local representation of our denomination, the PCA.

 


Our Priorities

Grace-centered

When we recognize that we are completely dependent on the grace of God, we respond by thanking God for his kindness and by proclaiming the good news of the gospel to others. As we acknowledge our own brokenness, we can honestly welcome all people—no matter their own brokenness— to join us as we follow Christ.

Community

We believe that growth happens best when we are growing together. We want to be a place where every person at Orangewood feels known and welcome. Our ministries are all focused on creating opportunities in which community will grow and flourish.

Family

We provide strong, Biblical teaching for every age, beginning with our smallest children, and support parents as they raise their children to know and love Christ. We want our church to be a strong, spiritual family and to show the love of Christ to one another at all times.