What We Believe

Thank you for taking the time to learn more about us!  All are welcome to come and visit and set up a time to speak with Pastor Heinecke. Hope Lutheran Church is a congregation of the Mid-South District of the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. We are a confessional Lutheran congregation. This means we are catholic but not Roman Catholic. We are evangelical but not a part of the modern Evangelical movement. We hold that Jesus Christ crucified and risen again for the forgiveness of our sins (justification) is the very center and core of who we are. Our Lord comes to us to forgive our sins and give us Himself through the Word of God, preaching, baptism, absolution (forgiveness) and the Lord’s Supper. This one, catholic (Christian) and apostolic faith is confessed in the three ecumenical creeds as well as confessed in the Book of Concord of 1580. To learn more about the Book of Concord, click here. To learn more about the LCMS, click here.

The Sacrament of the Altar

We are also delighted to have you join us for worship. If you wish to receive Holy Communion, please know that we desire that for you as well. As part of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) we practice closed communion.  The Lord’s Supper is offered to our communicant members. It is also offered to those who are in good standing of congregations in full altar and pulpit fellowship with the LCMS.* Because we believe, teach, and confess that the Sacrament of the Altar is such a big step, we ask that you visit with the pastor BEFORE the service to introduce yourself to him and ask to receive the Lord’s Supper. This is born out of our desire to be faithful to the Word of God (I Corinthians 11:23-32) and out of Christian love for you. We ask all in attendance to please honor our practice. If you are not a member of a LCMS congregation, we encourage you to contact Pastor for more information on how to become a member and we encourage you to learn more regarding our Communion practice. *Sadly, the ELCA and LCMS are not in altar and pulpit fellowship for many significant reasons and cannot commune at this altar.

Recommended Articles

In the wake of what happened with the world’s reaction to COVID-19, we need to understand how the Lord’s gifts in the Divine Service are not an impediment but are actually needed in the midst of calamity and pestilence. Also, let it be clear, Hope Lutheran Church will always continue to worship together and offer the common cup. In regards to the Cup, should not our theology inform and determine our practice rather than the world? As the blessed hymn, “What God Ordains Is Always Good”, confesses: What God Ordains is always good: His loving thought attends me; No poison can be in the cup that my physician sends me. (v. 3) Dear saints, what is in the common cup, the blood of Christ, in, with, and under the wine is for the forgiveness of sins, the strengthening of faith, and the salvation of the soul.

Our God will not bring about our demise through his last will and testament for the salvation of our souls. Reflecting on 1 Corinthians 11:30, The Rev. Dr. John Stephenson says, “Sacred Scripture leaves us in no doubt that some have fallen sick and even died through their partaking of Holy Communion, while making it clear that unworthy Communion rather than deficient hygiene is to be regarded as the culprit.” For an explanation of the use of the chalice I would recommend reading: “The Chalice Reconsidered” by Rev. Marcus Zill.

An article for those interested in learning about good hymnody: “The Bottom of the Page–A Trick for Identifying Good Hymns”

I’ve Been Invited to a Same-Sex “Wedding.” What Should I Do? No one is suggesting that we should cut off all contact with unbelievers or those engaged in sinful lifestyles. But… Unfortunately, we live in age that has destroyed the definition of Marriage and profaned that which God gave to us as a holy gift. So we need to be able to discuss this intelligently and compassionately but in a loving, Christian manner, so that the ones whom we love may understand God’s abhorrence of this unchristian belief.

We are a church who believes that our Life Together gathered around Word and Sacrament is our central focus but without Witnessing to the world and doing acts of Mercy to those around us, we would be missing key parts of the Church. To learn more about this important emphasis please click the image above.

We believe, teach, and confess that:

The one and only true God is the Triune God -Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – as revealed by Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of the Father, and His prophets, apostles, and evangelists in the Holy Scriptures (Mt. 28:20).

Every human being is conceived and born dead to God, is entirely predisposed to sin, is without inherent fear, love, or trust in God and is lacking in the ability or will to turn toward God, is entirely turned against God and is therefore under the sentence of eternal death and damnation (Eph. 2:1-10; Ps. 51:5).

Jesus Christ is true God, eternally begotten of the Father, and at the same time true man, born of the Virgin Mary, and is the only Savior from sin and the only Mediator between God and humanity (Jn. 1:1-3,14; 1 Tim. 2:5; 1 Jn. 5:20; Acts 4:12) who, by his perfect life and sacrificial death on the cross, has won the entire forgiveness of sins and who eternal life for every human being, from the beginning to the end of the world (Rom. 3:21-26; Gal. 4:4-5; 2 Cor. 5:21; 1 Jn. 2:2); who rose bodily from the dead on the third day (1 Cor. 15:3-5; and who now reigns at the right hand of God as Lord over all (Eph. 4:10-12)

We are justified, or declared not guilty, in the sight of God and rescued from sin, death, and damnation not by our works but solely by God’s undeserved kindness, His grace given as a free gift through faith in Jesus Christ, whose perfect life and sacrificial death as “the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” fully atone for our sins (Rom. 3:21-28; Eph. 2:8; John 1:29). Good works, prayer, and holiness of life are the fruit of faith in Christ, not the cause of faith or salvation (Jn. 15:5; Heb. 11:16).

The Holy Church is present wherever believers are gathered about Jesus Christ and His gifts, that is, wherever the Gospel of Jesus Christ is purely preached and taught, and Holy Baptism, Holy Absolution, Holy Communion are administered according to Christ’s mandate and institution, even though unbelievers or hypocrites may also be numbered among those gathered (Mt. 18:20; Acts 2:42; Mt. 13:47-48).

Our Lord Jesus Christ will appear visibly on the Last Day to raise the bodies of all the dead, to condemn those who reject Him in unbelief together with the devil and his demons to hell and eternal punishment, and to give eternal life to all who trust in Him for forgiveness, life, and salvation (Rev. 1:7; Mt. 25:31-46; Jn. 5:28-29).

Holy Scripture, or the Holy Bible, is the written Word of God, is the very “breath of God” and so is without factual error and is the only source and final authority and judge of all teaching, practice, and life. Holy Scripture preaches the saving death and resurrection of Jesus Christ for the repentance and faith of the sinner (2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Pet. 1:22; Luke 24:47).

The Word of God is a two-fold word – the Law, which reveals our sin and seeks and kills the sinner, and the Gospel, which announces, offers, delivers, and applies the forgiveness of sins.