At Trinity, we believe that the Bible teaches that a person is saved by God’s grace alone through faith in Jesus Christ alone. The Bible tells us that such “faith comes by hearing” (Romans 10:17). Jesus Himself commands Baptism and tells us that Baptism is water used together with the Word of God (Matthew 28:19-20) Because of this, we believe that Baptism is one of the miraculous means of grace (another is God’s Word as it is written or spoken), through which God creates and/or strengthens the gift of faith in a person’s heart.
Although we do not claim to understand fully how this happens, we believe that when an infant is baptized, God creates faith in the heart of that infant. We believe this because the Bible says that infants can believe (Matthew 19:14) and that new birth (regeneration) happens in Baptism (John 3:5-7).
We do not believe that only those baptized as infants receive faith. Faith can also be created in a person’s heart by the power of the Holy Spirit working through God’s (written or spoken) Word. Depending on the situation, Lutherans baptize people of all ages from infancy to adulthood. That being said, Baptism is not a mere “ritual” or “symbol”, but a powerful means of grace by which God grants faith and forgiveness of sins.
Marriage & Weddings
We believe that the Bible clearly teaches that marriage is the one-flesh union of man and a woman (Genesis 2:24) and that God gave marriage as a picture of the relationship between Christ and His bride, the Church (Ephesians 5:32). Even more than an experience between a man and a woman who promise lifelong faithfulness to each other, marriage mirrors the relationship between God and His faithful people.
The wedding day is special not because the bride and groom are the “star attractions” but because they have invited Jesus to be present with them, their families, and their friends as they celebrate the joining of their lives together.
Having a wedding in a church does not make a marriage Christian. What makes a marriage uniquely Christian is the faith commitment each spouse has to Jesus. The mutual giving and receiving of unconditional love and unlimited forgiveness can only happen when those gifts have been received from Christ. The Bible states, “…a cord of three strands is not quickly broken” (Ecclesiastes 4:12) – those strands being the bride, the groom, and the Lord Jesus Himself.