Christ as Savior and Lord
We believe, teach and confess that Jesus Christ is our Savior and Lord, and that through faith in Him we receive forgiveness of sins, eternal life and salvation.
We believe, teach and confess that because the Scriptures have God as their author, they possess both the divine power to make men wise unto salvation through faith in Jesus Christ, as well as the divine authority to serve as the church’s sole standard of doctrine and life (normative authority).
We believe, teach and confess that God, by the almighty power of His Word, created all things. We also believe that man, as the principal creature of God, was specially created in the image of God, that is, in a state of righteousness, innocence and blessedness. We affirm that Adam and Eve were real historical human beings, the first two people in the world, and that their fall was a historical occurrence which brought sin into the world so that "since the fall of Adam all men who are propagated according to nature are born in sin." We confess that man’s fall necessitated the gracious redemptive work of Jesus Christ and that fallen man’s only hope for salvation from his sin lies in Jesus Christ, his Redeemer and Lord.
We reaffirm our acceptance of the Scriptures as the inspired and inerrant Word of God, and our unconditional subscription to "all the Symbolical Books of the Evangelical Lutheran Church as a true and unadulterated statement and exposition of the Word of God." We accept the Lutheran Confessions because they are drawn from the Word of God and on that account regard their doctrinal content as a true and binding exposition of Holy Scripture and as authoritative for our work as ministers of Jesus Christ and servants of The Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod.
Infants are included in "all nations" who are to be baptized (Matt. 28:19). Certainly they were included in Peter’s Pentecost exhortation in Acts 2:38-39: "Repent and be baptized everyone one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins....The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off — for all whom the Lord our God will call."
Whole households, everyone in the family, were baptized in the beginning of New Testament times, which in all probability included infants (Acts 16:15 and 33). [The "household" formula used here by Luke has Old Testament precedent, with special reference also to small children, as for example in 1 Sam. 22:16, 19; see Joachim Jeremias, Infant Baptism in the First Four Centuries, 22-23.] In Romans 6, the Holy Spirit tells us in the Word that in Baptism we have been united with Jesus’ death and resurrection — regenerated, dying to sin and rising to new life. That happens to infants when baptized (Gal. 3:27). "For as many of you who have been baptized have put on Christ." Baptism through the Word creates the faith necessary to receive salvation for infants.
We believe that Scripture teaches that the Lord’s Supper is a precious gift of God in which Christ gives us His true body and blood (in a miraculous way; in, with and under), together with the bread and wine, for the forgiveness of our sins and the strengthening of our faith. Because the Bible teaches that this sacrament may also be spiritually harmful if misused, and that participation in the Lord’s Supper is an act of confession of faith, the LCMS ordinarily communes only those who have been instructed in the teachings of our church and who have confessed their faith in these teachings.