Our denomination, A Covenant Order of Evangelical Presbyterians (ECO), declares, “What we believe compels how we live. ECO is committed to a clearly-articulated, Christ-centered theology that propels our ministry and mission.” The “Essential Tenets and Confessional Standards” of ECO outline these beliefs. Chapel by the Lake is joyfully bound to these tenets. Click this link to read the complete document: http://eco-pres.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/ECO-Essential-Tenets-Confessions.pdf
Here’s a brief summary of the Tenets – our core beliefs and theological convictions:
The Word of God: The Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments are the infallible, written Word of God. Jesus is the incarnate, living Word of God. The Word of God is the unique and only authority of Christian faith.
Trinity: God is Trinitarian in His nature and essence – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. God is one and three at the same time.
Incarnation: Jesus Christ is both fully God and fully human. Jesus was conceived of the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary, lived a perfect, sin-free earthly life, was crucified, bodily resurrected, and ascended to heaven to reign with God the Father. Jesus will one day return visibly to earth to judge the living and the dead.
God’s grace in Christ: God created the world perfect and good; however, sin and death entered creation when humans freely chose to disobey God. Through the atoning work of Jesus Christ, God rescues us from sin and gives us salvation. Jesus Christ is the only and exclusive way to salvation.
Election for salvation and service: God chooses us because of his love and mercy, not because of our merit or work. We confess Jesus Christ as Lord and God only through the work of the Holy Spirit. Through the regenerating and sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit, God grants us faith and enables holiness so we may be witnesses to God’s gracious presence to those who are lost. In other words, God saves us to share God’s love with the lost.
Covenant life in the Church: Christ adopts us into the family of God, the body of Christ, where we find our new identity as brothers and sisters of one another. The covenant community (church) receives God’s grace through the preaching of the Word, the two Sacraments of baptism and the Lord’s Supper, and through mutual discipline.
Faithful stewardship of our lives: God calls men and women to the church’s “ordered ministries” – teaching elders (pastors), ruling elders, and deacons. Jesus teaches us to love God with every dimension of our being – heart, mind, and soul. No part of human life is off limits to the sanctifying claims of God.
Living in obedience: Out of gratitude to God for His grace, we progress in holiness, which is initiated, sustained, and fulfilled, by the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit. The Ten Commandments especially guide our life of following Christ. This includes the demand to maintain chastity in thought and deed, being faithful within the covenant of marriage between a man and a woman as established by God at the creation or embracing a celibate life as established by Jesus in the new covenant. Jesus is the perfect expression of God’s will for human beings. As the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, Jesus leads us along the path of life toward that goal, bringing us into ever deeper intimacy with the Triune God, in whose presence is fullness of joy.
Chapel’s denomination – ECO: A Covenant Order of Evangelical Presbyterians
In April 2013, Chapel joined ECO, a Reformed and Presbyterian denomination. ECO formed in January 2012 so congregations and leaders could unite in a covenanted biblical community centered in Jesus, anchored to the Bible’s authority, and committed to the mission of building God’s kingdom.
ECO exists to serve the local church and nurture leaders. The name represents a three-fold commitment to make disciples of Jesus Christ (Evangelical), connect leaders through accountable biblical relationships founded in God’s grace (Covenant), and commit to a shared way of life together (Order). The acronym ECO also speaks to the commitment to strengthen the “ecosystems” of local churches, providing the resources needed to grow, thrive, and reproduce. Chapel is a member of ECO’s Alaska Presbytery, which encompasses the entire state.