Beliefs & Heritage

Belvidere Church of Christ is an independent congregation that represents a faith heritage that formed here in the United States in the very early 1800s. It was led by men who had been Presbyterian ministers and were endeavoring to bring about greater Christian unity.

Rather than try to come up with a better creed than the Westminster Confession, the earliest leaders of our movement called fellow Christians to simply go back to the Bible and emulate the beliefs and practices of the 1st century churches, as found on the pages of the New Testament. Our earliest leaders–Thomas Campbell, his son Alexander, Barton W. Stone, and Walter Scott–saw themselves as carrying on the work of reformation begun by men like Martin Luther and John Calvin. And yet, our heritage has historically been referred to as a “restoration” movement due to the emphasis on a restoration of New Testament Christianity.

Ours is a heritage which affirms the historic, Christian faith and traditional, biblical morals and ethics. We see ourselves as “Christians only and not the only Christians” and appreciate the hope, mission and values that we share with all believers who seek to obey, live, and celebrate the Gospel of our risen Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Furthermore, our restorationist heritage is one that we share with other fellowships including the Independent Christian Churches and the International Churches of Christ.

As a local body of believers in Christ, we affirm what so many other believers have confessed and practiced throughout the centuries:

God is our Creator, the Maker of Heaven and Earth;

Jesus is his only begotten Son who died for us and was raised back to life;

God’s Holy Spirit is at work in the world, especially through the lives of those who are followers of Jesus;

We are all sinners in need of grace, mercy and forgiveness;

At the same time, we are called to be growing in our faith and commitment to conduct our lives in a way that expresses and validates our claim to follow Jesus;

We approach God in prayer with confidence, humility and trust;

We endeavor to teach and practice a faith that is genuinely biblical;

We celebrate the Gospel through songs and hymns;

We observe communion on a weekly basis;

We invite new believers to confess Christ Jesus as Lord and Savior and to be buried and raised with him in baptism;

Our ultimate hope is that in the end, whenever and however that finally comes about, that we will be raised from death into a new state of bodily existence in which we will never cease to be.