US Mennonite Brethren

One Family. One Lord. One Mission

Confession of Faith Detailed Version

Introduction

The Mennonite Brethren Church is rooted in the evangelical Anabaptist sixteenth-century Reformation, a movement that sought to recapture the faith and life of the New Testament church. The Mennonite Brethren Church was born as a renewal movement in Russia on 1860. World mission efforts and widespread migrations have produced a movement that circles the globe. The Mennonite Brethren Church emphasized the centrality of biblical authority, articulating confessions of faith in order to connect scriptural teaching with contemporary discipleship. With Menno Simons, we hold central the biblical statement, “For no one can lay any foundation other than the one that has been laid; that foundation is Jesus Christ” (1 Cor. 3:11).

The 2014 USMB Confession of Faith contains wording of Article 13 which has been revised from the 1999 North American version of the Confession of Faith.  The 1999 North American confession is a complete revision of earlier Mennonite Brethren confessions of faith. The 1902 confession, adopted in Russia and North America, was revised in 1975. The 1999 confession was written and adopted by the North American Mennonite Brethren Church for use in the United States and Canada. The framers of the 1999 confession gratefully acknowledge their indebtedness to the Confession of Faith in a Mennonite Perspective. Following a decade-long process of writing, consulting Mennonite Brethren congregations and sister national conferences and revising, the 1999 confession gained final approval at the General Conference meetings in Wichita KS in July of that year. That version was jointly owned by both the Canadian Conference of MB Churches and the US Conference of MB Churches following the dissolution of the General Conference in 2000.

At the 2010 USMB Convention in Surrey, British Columbia, Canada, the USMB Board of Faith and Life was given the task of reviewing and revising Article 13 of the 1999 Confession of Faith in order to bring it into compliance with our current understanding of the Bible and how we live that out. After months of consulting with individuals, churches, districts and the Canadian Conference of MB Churches, followed by multiple revisions and acceptance by the International Community of Mennonite Brethren, the USMB Board of Faith and Life proposed the current wording of Article 13 at the USMB Convention in Santa Clara, California in July 2014 where delegates approved the article as it appears here.

The Bible is our written authority. As Anabaptists, we believe that authoritative interpretation of the Bible is the result of corporate reflection under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. This confession is the result of such a process and not only describes how the US Mennonite Brethren Church interprets the Bible for our context, but is also an authoritative guide for biblical interpretation, theological identity and ethical practice.

The reader should be alert to the following literary conventions adopted for this confession. Scripture references are listed at the conclusion of each article. These references are not meant to be exhaustive nor do they serve primarily as proof-texts for the articles. Pronouns referring to God are uniformly upper case to remind the reader that the use of the masculine pronoun is a convention of human language. God is neither male nor female; human male and female, are created in the image of God. A more complete commentary and pastoral application of this confession is available from Kindred Productions. A liturgical version of this confession, Confessing Together, is also commended for use in congregational worship.

(Revised and updated from the Introduction written for the 1999 version)

 Article 1: God

 Article 2: Revelation of God

 Article 3: Creation and Humanity

 Article 4: Sin and Evil

 Article 5: Salvation

 Article 6: Nature of the Church

 Article 7: Mission of the Church

 Article 8: Christian Baptism

 Article 9: Lord’s Supper

 Article 10: Discipleship

 Article 11: Marriage, Singleness, Family

 Article 12: Society and State

 Article 13: Love, Peacemaking and Reconciliation

 Article 14: The Sanctity of Human Life

 Article 15: Stewardship

 Article 16: Work Rest and the Lord’s Day

 Article 17: Christianity and Other Faiths

 Article 18: Christ’s Final Triumph

 Click here for a printable version of the Confession of Faith Detailed Version.

Confession of Faith Detailed Version

Introduction

The Mennonite Brethren Church is rooted in the evangelical Anabaptist sixteenth-century Reformation, a movement that sought to recapture the faith and life of the New Testament church. The Mennonite Brethren Church was born as a renewal movement in Russia on 1860. World mission efforts and widespread migrations have produced a movement that circles the globe. The Mennonite Brethren Church emphasized the centrality of biblical authority, articulating confessions of faith in order to connect scriptural teaching with contemporary discipleship. With Menno Simons, we hold central the biblical statement, “For no one can lay any foundation other than the one that has been laid; that foundation is Jesus Christ” (1 Cor. 3:11).

The 2014 USMB Confession of Faith contains wording of Article 13 which has been revised from the 1999 North American version of the Confession of Faith.  The 1999 North American confession is a complete revision of earlier Mennonite Brethren confessions of faith. The 1902 confession, adopted in Russia and North America, was revised in 1975. The 1999 confession was written and adopted by the North American Mennonite Brethren Church for use in the United States and Canada. The framers of the 1999 confession gratefully acknowledge their indebtedness to the Confession of Faith in a Mennonite Perspective. Following a decade-long process of writing, consulting Mennonite Brethren congregations and sister national conferences and revising, the 1999 confession gained final approval at the General Conference meetings in Wichita KS in July of that year. That version was jointly owned by both the Canadian Conference of MB Churches and the US Conference of MB Churches following the dissolution of the General Conference in 2000.

At the 2010 USMB Convention in Surrey, British Columbia, Canada, the USMB Board of Faith and Life was given the task of reviewing and revising Article 13 of the 1999 Confession of Faith in order to bring it into compliance with our current understanding of the Bible and how we live that out. After months of consulting with individuals, churches, districts and the Canadian Conference of MB Churches, followed by multiple revisions and acceptance by the International Community of Mennonite Brethren, the USMB Board of Faith and Life proposed the current wording of Article 13 at the USMB Convention in Santa Clara, California in July 2014 where delegates approved the article as it appears here.

The Bible is our written authority. As Anabaptists, we believe that authoritative interpretation of the Bible is the result of corporate reflection under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. This confession is the result of such a process and not only describes how the US Mennonite Brethren Church interprets the Bible for our context, but is also an authoritative guide for biblical interpretation, theological identity and ethical practice.

The reader should be alert to the following literary conventions adopted for this confession. Scripture references are listed at the conclusion of each article. These references are not meant to be exhaustive nor do they serve primarily as proof-texts for the articles. Pronouns referring to God are uniformly upper case to remind the reader that the use of the masculine pronoun is a convention of human language. God is neither male nor female; human male and female, are created in the image of God. A more complete commentary and pastoral application of this confession is available from Kindred Productions. A liturgical version of this confession, Confessing Together, is also commended for use in congregational worship.

(Revised and updated from the Introduction written for the 1999 version)

 Article 1: God

 Article 2: Revelation of God

 Article 3: Creation and Humanity

 Article 4: Sin and Evil

 Article 5: Salvation

 Article 6: Nature of the Church

 Article 7: Mission of the Church

 Article 8: Christian Baptism

 Article 9: Lord’s Supper

 Article 10: Discipleship

 Article 11: Marriage, Singleness, Family

 Article 12: Society and State

 Article 13: Love, Peacemaking and Reconciliation

 Article 14: The Sanctity of Human Life

 Article 15: Stewardship

 Article 16: Work Rest and the Lord’s Day

 Article 17: Christianity and Other Faiths

 Article 18: Christ’s Final Triumph

 Click here for a printable version of the Confession of Faith Detailed Version.