We are a Gospel-Driven Church. We are built on the atoning death and resurrection of Christ as described by the Bible.
We believe that everything that we know and do is built upon the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The sin and rebellion of the human race brings separation from God. The Gospel tells us that the penalty of sin was paid by Jesus Christ, so that we could be reconciled to God. By trusting in Jesus we are “united” with him. Our sin is paid for by His death; and His perfectly obedient life is credited to us. This is the message of good news – the Gospel. In proclaiming this “good news” we join with the historic witness of Christians throughout the world who have put their trust in Jesus Christ.
We believe that the Bible is the very Word of God and it is our authority for faith and life. Our hope lies in the saving activity of Jesus Christ - a real event in history. Everything that we do and believe as a church flows out of this salvation in Jesus Christ. We affirm the ancient Christian Creeds that worship the One God who is revealed in Three Persons (Nicean Creed). We trust in Jesus - the eternal son of God who is both fully human and fully God. We join with the Reformers who declared that salvation is by God’s grace alone. He saves us from our sin and rebellion through the atoning death and resurrection of Jesus Christ alone. We are declared to be righteous when we have faith alone, not through our religious activities. Although good actions flow from true faith, they are not the basis by which God saves us. Although church tradition is important, Scripture alone is the final authority in Christian faith. And finally, we know that the ultimate purpose of all of God’s saving activity – indeed, all of human history – is for God’s glory alone.
The Gospel Compels Us to Engage the City. We are committed to ministry in and for the City of Pittsburgh.
We believe that God has called the Church to be a witness to the gospel of Jesus Christ through words and through actions. Our goal is to talk about Jesus in ways that are understandable to people who are not familiar with church. But, in addition to proclaiming the gospel with words, we also aim to live in a way that shows that we are followers of Jesus. We believe that we can only do this effectively when we regard Pittsburgh as our home. As a church called to minister in this historic city, we do this by living in the city and working with our neighbors to make Pittsburgh a better place.
As Christians we are working to fulfill the great commission of Jesus Christ, found in Matthew 28:18-20. Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age."
As people created in the image of God, we are striving to bring cultural renewal to our society in a way that reflects the “cultural mandate” found in Genesis 1:27-28. "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. And God blessed them. And God said to them, 'Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it.'"
The Gospel Renews Our Minds. We are committed to historic Protestant Reformation theology.
We believe that theology is important, and that God wants us to think carefully about our faith. Although we are committed to communicating the message of Jesus Christ in a way that is understandable, we do not believe that we have the right to change the content of the message. We have received a message of grace “once for all delivered to the saints.” (Jude 1:3) Because Jesus is Lord over all aspects of life, we aim to be a church that brings the light of Biblical Revelation to all spheres of human activity.
We are also committed to a school of theology that comes from the Protestant Reformation, but which has its roots in the Scriptures. Although these Scriptures are the only rule for faith and practice, we believe that the Confession of Faith written by the Westminster Assembly (during the 1640’s) is a faithful summary of Biblical teaching. Together with our Book of Church Order, the documents from Westminster form the constitution of our Church.
The Gospel Forms Us Into a Family. We are committed to relational ministry in the local church, but connected world-wide.
The Bible tells us that people who believe in Jesus Christ and follow him become children of God. (Gal 3:28) When we have God as our Father, we find out that we have lots of other sisters and brothers! Therefore, the Gospel brings us not only into a relationship with God, but also into relationships with each other. In the New Testament, the church is not a building, but rather a group of people who are connected together through their faith in Jesus Christ. In addition to finding fulfillment in relationships, our abilities are best used when we join together with others in the church. In short, commitment to the local church is the normative Christian experience.
We believe that as a family, our church has mothers and fathers who guide our activities, called elders. The mature “fathers” of the church form the session which is our governing body. These elders are elected by the congregation, in a system of church government called “Presbyterian government.” Mature women in the church also provide guidance and instruction through a body called “Women In the Church.”
Our local Church is connected with a larger body of churches called the “Presbyterian Church in America." We are accountable to other churches in our region through a group of local churches, called a presbytery. Our denomination is also connected across the world as we both send Christian workers through our missions agency (Mission to the World) and learn from the growth of the Christian Church in other parts of the world. We have distinctive beliefs which are important, but we know that the body of people who have faith in Christ extends far beyond the walls of our own denomination. We seek to work with other churches that preach the Gospel, worship the Trinity and believe in the authority of the Scriptures.
The Gospel Directs Our Worship to the Living God. We are committed to God-Honoring Worship, regulated by the Bible.
We believe that the primary purpose of the church is to worship the living God. Though by nature, we as humans, would prefer to worship ourselves or images of “god” that we construct. The good news of Jesus Christ is that God sent his son to die for us “when we were still his enemies.” (Romans 5:8-10) We respond to his grace in our lives by giving praise to him and declaring that he is worthy (“worship”). We understand that we have access to God through Jesus and we have confidence to approach the very throne of God in prayer because of the life and death of Jesus Christ (Hebrews 12).
We believe that God has described the types of activities that we should do to worship him. Therefore, our worship is “regulated” and limited to those things which God expressly commands his people to do when they gather for worship. The manner in which these are done and the location and time of worship may vary from church to church. These parts of worship are shared among churches throughout our tradition. When we gather for worship we praise God in words and song; lift up prayers of confession, praise and petition; and offer our lives and possessions to God. We also proclaim our faith, make public promises, receive God’s assurance of pardon and instruction from the Word, and partake of the Sacraments of Communion and Baptism.