The Churches of the Parish of East Maitland believe that the Bible is God's word. It is applicable to our every day lives. It is accurate and authoritative. We believe in one eternal God who is the creator of all things who exists in three persons: God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. The values taught in the Bible are often the opposite of worldly values. They promote peace and goodwill among people in accordance with the purposes of God. Christian values such as kindness and respect instead of power, forgiveness instead of revenge, honesty and generosity instead of wealth, humility instead of status are examples of how people who obey God can find a sense of peace and joy that no worldly values can match. Jesus stated the two most important commandments are to "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength" (Mark 12:28-30) and to "Love your neighbour as yourself" (Mark 12:31). These are two very important values for living which are strongly emphasised in the Bible.
The Bible is the compilation of 66 books from the writings of over forty human authors that took place over sixteen centuries accounting for God's action in the world, his purpose and the message that God desired us to have. The Bible comes to us in a variety of styles, in proverbs and parables, in history and prophecy, in narratives and dialogues, all providing stories about the life of Jesus, about battles and journeys, about the lives of good and bad people. The Bible has stories such as Noah and the Ark, Joseph's coat of many colours, Daniel in the lion's den, Jonah and the fish as well as the parables of Jesus, all of which emphasize the triumphs and failures of ordinary people. The Bible is a refuge for people who are suffering or in pain that has brought them strength in their time of need. The Bible is a source for everyday living, where the standards for our conduct can be found, providing guidelines for knowing right from wrong and helping us in a society that is troubled or confused where so often everything and anything can happen, the Bible can provide help and comfort for those in need. Members of St. Stephen's Church meet each Tuesday at 10:30am to study the Bible, seeking to know God better, to show love, goodwill, compassion to all while upholding God's teachings and laws.
Members of our two churches use prayer to form a relationship with God. Sincere prayer helps us to establish a personal relationship with God. Prayer is a powerful tool where individuals can speak directly with our Father in Heaven. Prayer is a personal form of communication that everyone can have with God, that can lead people to a deeper and closer relationship with God. We pray that God will guide us through our daily lives, providing help to those in need. God will not always answer our prayers as we would always like but will answer them with wisdom, empathy and compassion. Our churches believe that our relationship with God is personal and is significantly enhanced with prayer to better understand Him and His plan for us. Members of St. Stephen's church have a prayer breakfast on Saturday mornings from 8:30am.
© 2017 Presbyterian Church of the Parish of East Maitland.