First and foremost, we believe in Jesus! And yet we know that believing in Jesus can mean different things to different people. That’s why we need Scripture to show us who Jesus is, and to guide our faith. As God’s written word, Scripture serves as the one perfect standard for everything we believe and do. After Scripture we have other standards that highlight the main ideas and themes of the Bible which we call subordinate standards. These help clarify the interpretive questions in the Bible and better define our faith. The subordinate standards in the Presbyterian Church in Canada are:
The Westminster Confession of Faith
Declaration of Faith Concerning Church and Nation
While Presbyterian theology is highly developed, regular church membership only requires a simple faith in Jesus Christ in accordance with the Apostles’ Creed.
The Apostles’ Creed
I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth,
And in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord;
Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried;
He descended into hell;
The third day he rose again from the dead;
He ascended into heaven, and sits on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from there he shall come to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit; the holy catholic Church; the communion of saints; the forgiveness of sins; the resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting.
Note: The creed’s use of the word “catholic” (from the Greek καθολικός/katholikos) means “according to the whole” and does not refer to any single institution or congregation but to the entire universal Church which shares a common faith as the body of Christ.