Reference numbers, e.g. [6.001] are those found in the The Constitution

of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Part I, _The Book of Confessions_.


Presbyterian Church                     The United Presbyterian Church

in the United States                   in the United States of America

		   Of the Holy Scripture


1. Although the light of nature, and the works of creation and

providence, do so far manifest the goodness, wisdom, and power of God,

as to leave men inexcusable; yet [PCUS are they] [UPCUSA they are] not

sufficient to give that knowledge of God, and of his will, which is

necessary unto salvation; therefore it pleased the Lord, at sundry

times, and in divers manners, to reveal himself, and to declare that

his will unto his Church; and afterwards for the better preserving and

propagating of the truth, and for the more sure establishment and

comfort of the Church against the corruption of the flesh, and the

malice of Satan and of the world, to commit the same wholly unto

writing; which maketh the Holy Scripture to be most necessary; those

former ways of God's revealing his will unto his people being now



2. Under the name of Holy Scripture, or the Word of God written, are

now contained all the books of the Old and New Testaments, which are


		    Of the Old Testament

Genesis			II Chronicles		Daniel

Exodus			Ezra		     	Hosea

Leviticus		Nehemiah		Joel

Numbers			Esther			Amos

Deuteronomy		Job			Obadiah

Joshua			Psalms			Jonah

Judges			Proverbs		Micah

Ruth			Ecclesiastes		Nahum

I Samuel		The Song of Songs	Habakkuk

II Samuel		Isaiah			Zephaniah

I Kings			Jeremiah		Haggai

II Kings		Lamentations		Zechariah

I Chronicles		Ezekiel			Malachi

		   Of the New Testament

Matthew			Ephesians		Hebrews

Mark			Philippians		James

Luke			Colossians		I Peter

John			I Thessalonians		II Peter

Acts of the Apostles	II Thessalonians	I John

Romans			I Timothy		II John

I Corinthians		II Timothy		III John

II Corinthians		Titus			Jude

Galatians		Philemon		Revelation

All which are given by inspiration of God, to be the rule of faith and



3.The books commonly called Apocrypha, not being of divine

inspiration, are no part of the canon of Scripture; and therefore are

of no authority in the Church of God, nor to be any otherwise

approved, or made use of, than other human writings.


4. The authority of the Holy Scripture, for which it ought to be

believed and obeyed, dependeth not upon the testimony of any man or

church, but wholly upon God (who is truth itself), the author thereof;

and therefore it is to be received, because it is the Word of God.


5. We may be moved and induced by the testimony of the Church to an

high and reverent esteem [PCUS for] [UPCUSA of] the Holy Scripture;

and the heavenliness of the matter, the efficacy of the doctrine, the

majesty of the style, the consent of all the parts, the scope of the

whole (which is to give all glory to God), the full discovery it makes

of the only way of man's salvation, the many other incomparable

excellencies, and the entire perfection thereof, are arguments whereby

it doth abundantly evidence itself to be the Word of God; yet,

notwithstanding, our full persuasion and assurance of the infallible

truth and divine authority thereof, is from the inward work of the

Holy Spirit, bearing witness by and with the Word in our hearts.


6. The whole counsel of God, concerning all things necessary for his

own glory, man's salvation, faith, and life, is either expressly set

down in Scripture, or by good and necessary consequence may be deduced

from Scripture: unto which nothing at any time is to be added, whether

by new revelations of the Spirit, or traditions of men.  Nevertheless

we acknowledge the inward illumination of the Spirit of God to be

necessary for the saving understanding of such things as are revealed

in the Word; and [PCUS that] there are some circumstances concerning

the worship of God, and the government of the Church, common to human

actions and societies, which are to be ordered by the light of nature

and Christian prudence, according to the general rules of the Word,

which are always to be observed.


7. All things in Scripture are not alike plain in themselves, nor

alike clear unto all; yet those things which are necessary to be

known, believed, and observed, for salvation, are so clearly

propounded and opened in some place of Scripture or other, that not

only the learned, but the unlearned, in a due use of the ordinary

means, may attain unto a sufficient understanding of them.


8. The Old Testament in Hebrew (which was the native language of the

people of God of old), and the New Testament in Greek (which at the

time of the writing of it was most generally known to the nations),

being immediately inspired by God, and by his singular care and

providence kept pure in all ages, are therefore authentical; so as in

all controversies of religion the Church is finally to appeal unto

them.  But because these original tongues are not known to all the

people of God who have right unto, and interest in, the Scriptures,

and are commanded, in the fear of God, to read and search them,

therefore they are to be translated into the language of every people

unto which they come, that the Word of God dwelling plentifully in

all, they may worship him in an acceptable manner, and, through

patience and comfort of the Scriptures, may have hope.


9. The infallible rule of interpretation of Scripture, is the

Scripture itself; and therefore, when there is a question about the

true and full sense of any scripture (which is not manifold, but one),

it may be searched and known by other places that speak more clearly.


10. The Supreme Judge, by [PCUS which] [UPCUSA whom] all controversies

of religion are to be determined, and all decress of councils,

opinions of ancient writers, doctrines of men, and private spirits,

are to be examined, and in whose sentence we are to rest, can be no

other but the Holy Spirit speaking in the Scripture.


		Of God, and of the Holy Trinity


1. There is but one only living ahd true God, who is infinite in being

and perfection, a most pure spirit, invisible, without body, parts, or

passions, immutable, immense, eternal, incomprehensible, almighty,

most wise, most holy, most free, most absolute, working all things

according to the counsel of his own immutable and most righteous will,

for his won glory, most loving, gracious, merciful, long-suffering,

abundant in goodness and truth, forgiving iniquity, transgression, and

sin; the rewarder of them that diligently seek him; and withal most

just and terrible in his judgments; hating all sin; and who will by no

means clear the guilty.


2. God hath all life, glory, goodness, blessedness, in and of himself;

and is alone in and unto himself all-sufficient, not standing in need

of any creatures which he hath made, nor deriving any glory from them,

but only manifesting his own glory in, by, unto, and upon them; he is

the alone foundation of all being, of whom, through whom, and to whom,

are all things; and hath most sovereign dominion over them, to do by

them, for them, or upon them, whatsoever himself pleaseth.  In his

sight all things are open and manifest; his knowledge is infinite,

infallible, and independent upon the creature; so as nothing is to him

contingent or uncertain.  He is most holy in all his counsels, in all

his works, and in all his commands.  To him is due from angels and

men, and every other creature, whatsoever worship, service, or

obedience he is pleased to require of them.


3. In the unity of the Godhead there be three Persons of one

substance, power, and eternity: God the Father, God the Son, and God

the Holy Ghost.  The Father is of none, neither begotten nor

proceeding; the Son is eternall begotten of the Father; the Holy Ghost

eternally proceeding from the Father and the Son.


	Of God's Eternal [PCUS Decrees] [UPCUSA Decree]


1. God from all eternity did by the most wise and holy counsel of his own

will, freely and unchangeably ordain whatsoever comes to pass; yet so

as thereby neither is God the author of sin; nor is violence offered

to the will of the creatures, nor is the liberty or contingency of

second causes taken away, but rather established.


2. Although God knows whatsoever may or can come to pass, upon all

supposed conditions; yet hath he not decreed anything because he

foresaw it as future, as that which would come to pass, upon such



3. By the decree of God, for the manifestation of his glory, some men

and angels are predestinated unto everlasting life, and others

fore-ordained to everlasting death.


4. These angels and men, thus predestinated and fore-ordained, are

particularly and unchangeably designed; and their number is so certain

and definite that it cannot be either increased or diminished.


5. Those of mankind that are predestinated unto life, God, before the

foundation of the world was laid, according to his eternal and

immutable purpose, and the secret counsel and good pleasure of his

will, hath chosen in Christ, unto everlasting glory, out of his free

grace and love alone, without any foresight of faith or good works, or

perseverance in either of them, or any other thing in the creature, as

conditions, or causes moving him thereunto; and all to the praise of

his glorious grace.


6. As God hath appointed the elect unto glory, so hath he, by the

eternal and most free purpose of his will, fore-ordained all the means

thereunto.  Wherefore they who are elected being fallen in Adam are

redeemed by Christ, are effectually called unto faith in Christ by his

Spirit working in due season; are justified, adopted, sanctified, and

kept by his power through faith unto salvation.  Neither are any other

redeemed by Christ, effectually called, justified, adopted,

sanctified, and saved, but the elect only.


7. The rest of mankind, God was pleased, according to the unsearchable

counsel of his own will, whereby he extendeth or withholdeth mercy as

he pleaseth, for the glory of his sovereign power over his creatures,

to pass by, and to ordain them to dishonor and wrath for their sin, to

the praise of his glorious justice.


8. The doctrine of this high mystery of predestination is to be

handled with special prudence and care, that men attending to the will

og God revealed in his Word, and yielding obedience thereunto, may,

from the certainty of their effectual vocation, be assured of their

eternal election.  So shall this doctrine afford matter of praise,

reverence, and admiration of God; and of humility, diligence, and

abundant consolation to all that sincerely obey the gospel.


			Of Creation


1. It pleased God the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, for the

manifestation of the glory of his eternal power, wisdom, and goodness,

in the beginning, to create or make of nothing the world, and all

things therein, whether visible or invisible, in the space of six

days, and all very good.


2. After God had made all other creatures, he created man, male and

female, with reasonable and immortal souls, endued with knowledge,

righteousness, and true holiness after his own image, having the law

of God written in their hearts, and power to fulfill it; and yet under

a possibility of transgressing, being left to the liberty of their own

will, which was subject unto change.  Besides this law written in

their hearts, they received a command not to eat of the tree of the

knowledge of good and evil; which while they kept were happy in their

communion with God, and had dominion over the creatures.


			  Of Providence


1. God, the great Creator of all things, doth uphold, direct dispose,

and govern all creatures, actions, and things, from the greatest even

to the least, by his most wise and holy providence, according to his

infallible foreknowledge, and the free and immutable counsel of his

own will, to the praise of the glory of his wisdom, power, justice,

goodness, and mercy.


2. Although in relation to the foreknowledge and decree of God, the

first cause, all things come to pass immutably and infallibly, yet, by

the same providence, he ordereth them to fall out according to the

nature of second causes, either necessarily, freely, or contingently.


3. God, in his ordinary providence, maketh use of means, yet is free

to work without, above, and against them, at his pleasure.


4. The almighty power, unsearchable wisdom, and infinite goodness of

God, so far manifest themselves in his providence, that it extendeth

itself even to the first Fall, and all other sins of angels and men,

and that not by a bare permission, but such as hath joined with it a

most wise and powerful bounding, and otherwise ordering and governing

of them, in a manifold dispensation, to his own holy ends; yet so, as

the sinfulness thereof proceedeth only from the creature, and not from

God; who being most holy and righteous, neither is nor can be the

author or approver of sin.


5. The most wise, righteous, and gracious God, doth often-times leave

for a season his own children to manifold temptations and the

corruption of their own hearts, to chastise them for their former

sins, or to discover unto them the hidden strength of corruption and

deceitfulness of their hearts, that they [UPCUSA may] be humbled; and

to raise them to a more close and constant dependence for their

support upon himself, and to make them more watchful against all

future occasions of sin, and for sundry other just and holy ends.


6. As for those wicked and ungodly men whom God, as a righteous judge,

for former sins, doth blind and harden; from them he not only

withholdeth his grace, whereby they might have been enlightened in

their understandings, and wrought upon their hearts; but sometimes

also withdraweth the gifts which they had; and exposeth them to such

objects as their corruption makes occasion of sin; and withal, [PCUS

giveth] [UPCUSA gives] them over to their own lusts, the temptatoins

of the world, and the power of Satan; whereby it [PCUS cometh] [PCUSA

comes] to pass that they harden themselves, even under those means

which God useth for the softening of others.


7. As the providence of God doth, in general, reach to all creatures,

so, after a most special manner, it taketh care of his Church, and

disposeth all things to the good thereof.


	    Of the Fall of Man, of Sin, and of the

		     Punishment Thereof


1. Our first parents, begin seduced by the subtilty and temptations of

Satan, sinned in eating the forbidden fruit.  This their sin God was

pleased, according to his wise and holy counsel, to permit, having

purposed to order it to his own glory.


2. By this sin they fell from their original righteousness and

communion with God, and so became dead in sin, and wholly defiled in

all the faculties and parts of soul and body.


3. They being the root of mankind, the guilt of this sin was imputed,

and the same death in sin and corrupted nature conveyed to all their

posterity, descending from them by original generation.


4. From this original corruption, whereby we are utterly indisposed,

disabled, and made opposite to all good, and wholly inclined to all

evil, do proceed all actual transgressions.


5. This corruption of nature, during this life, doth remain in those

that are regenerated; and although it be through Christ pardoned and

mortified, yet both itself, and all the motions thereof, are truly and

properly sin.


6. Every sin, both original and actual, being a transgression of the

righteous law of God, and contrary thereunto, doth, in its own nature,

bring guilt upon the sinner, whereby he is bound over to the wrath of

God, and curse of the law, and so made subject to death, with all

miseries spiritual, temporal, and eternal.


		    Of God's Covenant with Man


1. The distance between God and the creature is so great, that

although reasonable creatures do owe obedience unto him as their

Creator, yet they could never have any fruition of him, as their

blessedness and reward, but by some voluntary condescencion on God's

part, which he hath been pleased to express by way of covenant.


2. The first covenant made with man was a covenant of works, wherein

life was promised to Adam, and in him to his posterity, upon condition

of perfect and personal obedience.


3. Man, by his Fall, having made himself incapable of life by that

covenant, the Lord was pleased to make a second, commonly called the

covenant of grace: wherein he freely [PCUS offered] [UPCUSA offereth]

unto sinners life and salvation by Jesus Christ, requiring of them

faith in him, that they may be saved, and promising to give unto all

those that are ordained unto life, his Holy Spirit, to make them

willing and able to believe.


4. This covenant of grace is frequently set forth in the Scripture by

the name of a testament, in reference to the death of Jesus Christ,

the testator, and to the everlasting inheritance, with all things

belonging to it, therein bequeathed.


5. This covenant was differently administered in the time of the law,

and in the time of the gospel: under the law it was administered by

promises, prophecies, sacrifices, circumcision, the paschal lamb, and

other types and ordinances delivered to the people of the Jews, all

fore-signifying Christ to come, which were for that time sufficient

and efficacious, through the operation of the Spirit, to instruct and

build up the elect in faith in the promised Messiah, by whom they had

full remission of sins, and eternal salvation, and is called the Old



6. Under the gospel, when Christ the substance was exhibited, the

ordinances in which this covenant is dispensed, are the preaching of

the Word, and the administration of the sacraments of Baptism and the

Lord's Supper; which, though fewer in number, and administered with

more simplicity and less outward glory, yet in them it is held forth

in more fulness, evidence, and spiritual efficacy, to all nations,

both Jews and Gentiles; and is called the New Testament.  There are

not, therefore, two covenants of grace differing in substance, but one

and the same under various dispensations.


		      Of Christ the Mediator


1. It pleased God, in his eternal purpose, to choose and ordain the

Lord Jesus, his only begotten Son, to be the Mediator between God and

men, the prophet, priest, and king; the head and Savior of the Church,

the heir or all things, and judge of the world; unto whom he did, from

all eternity, give a people to be his seed, and to be by him in time

redeemed, called, justified, sanctified, and glorified.


2. The Son of God, the second Person in the Trinity, being very and

eternal God, of one substance, and equal with the Father, did, when

the fullness of time was come, take upon him man's nature, with all

the essential properties and common infirmities thereof; yet without

sin: being conceived by he power of the Holy Ghost, in the womb of the

Virgin Mary, of her substance.  So that two whole, perfect, and

distinct natures, the Godhead and the manhood, were inseparably joined

together in one person, without conversion, composition, or confusion.

Which person is very God and very man, yet one Christ, the only

Mediator between God and man.


3. The Lord Jesus in his human nature thus united to the divine, was

sanctified and anointed with the Holy Spirit above measure; having in

him all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge, in whom it pleased the

Father that all fullness should dwell: to the end that being holy,

harmless, undefiled, and full of grace and truth, he might be

thoroughly furnished to execute the office of a Mediator and Surety.

Which office he took not unto himself, but was thereunto called by his

Father; who put all power and judgment into his hand, and gave him

commandment to execute the same.


4. This office the Lord Jesus did most willingly undertake, which,

that he might discharge, he was made under the law, and did perfectly

fulfill it; endured most grievous torments immediately in his soul,

and most painful sufferings in his body; was crucified and died; was

buried, and remained under the power of death, yet saw no corruption.

On the third day he arose from the dead, with the same body in which

he suffered; with which also he ascended into heaven, and there

sitteth at the right hand of his Father, making intercession; and

shall return to judge men and angels, at the end of the world.


5. The Lord Jesus, by his perfect obedience and sacrifice of himself,

which he through the eternal Spirit once offered up unto God, hath

fully satisfied the justice of his Father; and purchased not only

reconciliation, but an everlasting inheritance in the kingdom of

heaven, for all those whom the Father hath given unto him.


6. Although the work of redemption was not actually wrought by Christ

till after his incarnation, yet the virtue, efficacy, and benefits

thereof were communicated into the elect, in all ages successively

from the beginning of the world, in and by those promises, types, and

sacrifices wherein he was revealed, and signified to be the seed of

the woman, which should bruise the serpant's head, and the Lamb slain

from the beginning of the world, being yesterday and today the same

and for ever.


7. Christ, in the work of mediation, acteth according to both natures;

by each nature doing that which is proper to itself; yet by reason of

the unity of the person, that which is proper to one nature is

sometimes, in Scripture, attributed to the person denominated by the

other nature.


8. To all those for whom Christ hath purchased redemption, he doth

certainly and effectually apply and communicate the same; making

intercession for them, and revealing unto them, in and by the Word,

the mysteries of salvation; effectually persuading them by his Spirit

to believe and obey; and governing their hearts by his Word and

Spirit; overcoming all their enemies by his almighty power and wisdon,

in such manner and ways as are most consonant to his wonderful and

unsearchable dispensation.


		        Of the Holy Spirit

[6.051 / 6.183]

1. The Holy Spirit, the third Person in the Trinity, proceeding from

the Father and the Son, of the same substance and equal in power and

glory, is, together with the Father and the Son, to be believed in,

loved, obeyed, and worshipped throughout all ages.

[6.052 / 6.184]

2. He is the Lord and Giver of life, everywhere present, and is the

source of all good thoughts, pure desires, and holy counsels in men.

By him the prophets were moved to speak the Word of God, and all the

writers of the Holy Scriptures inspired to record infallibly the mind

and will of God.  The dispensation of the gospel is especially

committed to him.  He prepares the way for it, accompanies it with his

persuasive power, and urges its message upon the reason and conscience

of men, so that they who reject its merciful offer are not only

without excuse, but are also guilty of resisting the Holy Spirit.

[6.053 / 6.185]

3. The Holy Spirit, whom the Father is ever willing to give to all who

ask him, is the only efficient agent in the application of redemption.

He regenerates men by his grace, convicts them of sin, moves them to

repentance, and persuades and enables them to embrace Jesus Christ by

faith.  He unites all believers to Christ, dwells in them as their

Comforter and Sanctifier, gives to them the spirit of Adoption and

Prayer, and performs all those gracious offices by which they are

sanctified and sealed unto the day of redemption.

[6.054 / 6.186]

4. By the indwelling of the Holy Spirit all believers being vitally

united to Christ, who is the Head, are thus united one to another in

the Church, which is his body.  He calls and anoints ministers for

their holy office, qualifies all other officers in the Church for

their special work, and imparts various gifts and graces to its

members.  He give efficacy to the Word and to the ordinances of the

gospel.  By him the Church will be preserved, increased, purified, and

at last made perfectly holy in the presence of God.


		     [PCUS Of the Gospel] 

	[UPCUSA Of the Gospel of the Love of God and Missions]

[6.055 / 6.187]

1. God in infinite and perfect love, having provided in the covenant

of grace, through the mediation and sacrifice of the Lord Jesus

Christ, a way of life and salvation, sufficient for and adapted to the

wholy lost race of man, doth freely offer this salvation to all men in

the gospel.

[6.056 / 6.188]

2. In the gospel God declares his love for the world and his desire

that all men should be saved; reveals fully and clearly the only way

of salvation' promises eternal life to all who truly repent and

believe in Christ; invites and commands all to embrace the offered

mercy; and by his Spirit accompanying the Word pleads with men to

accept his gracious invitation.

[6.057 / 6.189]

3. It is the duty and privilege of everyone who hears the gospel

immediately to accept its merciful provisions; and they who continue

in impenitence and unbelief incur aggravated guilt and perish by their

own fault.

[6.058 / 6.190]

4. Since there is no other way of salvation than that revealed in the

gospel, and since in the divinely established and ordinary method of

grace faith cometh by hearing the Word of God, Christ hath

commissioned his Church to go into all the world and to make disciples

of all nations.  All believers are, therefore, under obligation to

sustain the ordinances of the Christian religion where they are

already established, and to contribute by their prayers, gifts, and

personal effects to the extension of the Kingdom of Christ throughout

the whole earth.


			  Of Free Will


1. God hath endued the will of man with that natural liberty, that it

is neither forced, nor by any absolute necessity of nature determined

to good or evil.


2. Man, in his state of innocency, had freedom and power to will and

to do that which is good and well-pleasing to God; but yet mutably, so

that he might fall from it.


3. Man, by his Fall into a state of sin, hath wholly lost all ability

of will to any spiritual good accompanying salvation; so as a natural

man, being altogether averse from that good, and dead in sin, is not

able, by his own strength, to convert himself, or to prepare himself



4. When God [PCUS converteth] [UPCUSA converts] a sinner and [PCUS

translateth] [UPCUSA translates] him into the state of grace, he

freeth him from his natural bondage under sin, and, by his grace

alone, [PCUS enableth] [UPCUSA enables] him freely to will and to do

that which is spiritually good; yet so as that, by reason of his

remaining corruption, he doth not perfectly, nor only, will that which

is good, but doth also will that which is evil.


5. The will of man is made perfectly and immutable free to good alone,

in the state of glory only.


		       Of Effectual Calling


1. All those whom God hath predestinated unto life, and those only, he

is pleased, in his appointed and accepted time, effectually to call,

by his Word and Spirit, out of that state of sin and death in which

they are by nature, to grace and salvation by Jesus Christ:

enlightening their minds, spiritually and savingly, to understand the

things of God, taking away their heart of stone, and giving unto them

an heart of flesh; renewing their wills, and by his almighty power

determining them to that which is good; and effectually drawing them

to Jesus Christ; yet so as they come most freely, being made willing

by his grace.


2. This effectual call is of God's free and special grace alone, not

from anything at all foreseen in man, who is altogether passive

therein, until, being quickened and renewed by the Holy Spirit, he is

thereby enabled to answer this call, and to embrace the grace offered

and conveyed in it.


3. Elect infants, dying in infance, are regenerated and saved by

Christ through the Spirit, who worketh when, and where, and how he

pleaseth.  So also are all other elect persons who are incapable of

being outwardly called by the ministry of the Word.


4. Others, not elected, although they may be called by the ministry of

the Word, and may have some common operations of the Spirit, yet they

never truly come to Christ, and therefore cannot be saved: much less

can men, not professing the Christian religion, be saved in any other

way [PCUS whatsoever] [UPCUSA than by Christ], be they never so

diligent to frame their lives according to the light of nature, and

the law of that religion they do profess; and to assert and maintain

that they may is without warrant of the Word of God.


			Of Justification


1. Those whom God effectually calleth, he also freely justifieth: not

by infusing righteousness into them, but by pardoning their sins, and

by accounting and accepting their persons as righteous; not for

anything wrought in them, or done by them, but for Christ's sake

alone; not by imputing faith itself, the act of believing, or any

other evangelical obedience to them, as their righteousness; but by

imputing the obedience and satisfaction of Christ unto them, they

receiving and resting on him and his righteousness by faith; which

faith they have not of themselves, it is the gift of God.


2. Faith, thus receiving and resting on Christ and his righteousness,

is the alone instrument of justification; yet is it not alone in the

person justified, but is ever accompanied with all other saving

graces, and is no dead faith, but worketh by love.


3. Christ, by his obedience and death, did fully discharge the debt of

all those that are thus justified, and did make a proper, real, and

full satisfaction o his Father's justice in their behalf.  Yet

inasmuch as he was given by the Father for them, and his obedience and

satisfaction accepted in their stead, and both freely, not for

anything in them, their justification is only of free grace, that both

the exact justice and rich grace of God might be glorified in the

justification of sinners.


4. God did, from all eternity, decree to justify the elect; and Christ

did, in the fullness of time, die for their sins and rise again for

their justification; nevertheless they are not justified until the

Holy Spirit doth, in due time, actually apply Christ unto them.


5. God doth continue to forgive the sins of those that are justified;

and although they can never fall from the state of justification, yet

they may by their sins fall under God's Fatherly displeasure, and not

have the light of his countenance restored unto them, until they

humble themselves, confess their sins, beg pardon, and renew their

faith and repentance.


6. The justification of believers under the Old Testament was, in all

these respect, one and the same with the justification of believers

under the New Testament.


			   Of Adoption


1. All those that are justified, God vouchsafeth, in and for his only

Son Jesus Christ, to make partakers of the grace of adoption: by which

they are taken into the number, and enjoy the liberties and privileges

of the children of God; have his name put upon them; receive the

Spirit of adoption; have access to the throne of grace with boldness;

are enabled to cry, Abba, Father; are pitied, protected, provided for,

and chastened by his as by a father; yet never cast off, but sealed to

the day of redemption, and inherit the promises, as heirs of

everlasting salvation.


			Of Sanctification


1. They who are effectually called and regenerated, having a new heart

and a new spirit created in them, are further sanctified, really and

personally, through the virtue of Christ's death and resurrection, by

his Word and Spirit dwelling in them; the dominion of the whole body

of sin is destroyed, and the several lusts thereof are more and more

weakened and mortified, and they more and more quickened and

strengthened, in all saving graces, to the practice of true holiness,

without which no man shall see the Lord.


2. This sanctification is throughout in the whole man, yet imperfect

in this life: there abideth still some remnants of corruption in every

part, whence ariseth a continual and irreconcilable war, the flesh

lusting against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh.


3. In which war, although the remaining corruption for a time may much

prevail, yet, through the continual supply of strength rom the

sanctifying Spirit of Christ, the regerate part doth overcome: and so

the saints grow in grace, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.


			  Of Saving Faith


1. The grace of faith, whereby the elect are enabled to believe to the

saving of their souls, is the work of the Spirit of Christ in their

hearts; and is ordinarily wrought by the ministry of the Word: by

which also, and by the administration of the sacraments, and prayer,

it is increased and strengthened.


2. By this faith, a Christian believeth to be true whatesoever is

revealed in the Word, for the authority of god himself speaking

therein; and acteth differently, upon that which each particular

passage thereof containeth; yielding obedience to the commands,

trembling at the threatenings, and embracing the promises of God for

this life, and that which is to come.  But the principle acts of

saving faith are, accepting, receiving, and resting upon Christ alone

for justification, sanctification, and eternal life, by virtue of the

covenant of grace.


3. This faith is different in degrees, weak or strong; may be often

and many ways assailed and weakened, but gets the victory; growing up

in many to the attainment of a full assurance through Christ, who is

both the author and finisher of our faith.


		       Of Repentance Unto Life


1. Repentance unto life is an evangelical grace, the doctrine whereof

is to be preached by every minister of the gospel, as well as that of

faith in Christ.


2. By it a sinner, out of the sight and sense, not only of the danger,

but also of the filthiness and odiousness of his sins, as contrary to

the holy nature and righteous law of God, and upon the apprehension of

his mercy in Christ to such as are penitent, so grieves for, and hates

his sins, as to turn from them all unto God, purposing and endeavoring

to walk with him in all the ways of his commandments.


3. Although repentance be not to be rested in as any satisfaction for

sin, or any cause of the pardon thereof, which is the act of God's

free grace in Christ; yet is it of such necessity to all sinners, that

none may expect pardon without it.


4. As there is no sin so small but it deserves damnation; so there is

no sin so great that it can bring damnation upon those who truly



5. Men ought not to content themselves with a general repentance, but

it is every man's duty to endeavor to repent of his particular sins,



6. As every man is bound to make private confession of his sins to

God, praying for the pardon thereof, upon which, and the forsaking of

them, he shall find mercy: so he that scandelizeth his brother, or the

church of Christ, ought to be willing, by a private or public

confession and sorrow for his sin, to declare his repentance to those

that are offended; who are thereupon to be reconciled to him, and in

love to receive him.


			   Of Good Works


1. Good works are only such as God hath commanded in his holy Word,

and not such as, without the warrant thereof, are devised by men out

of blind zeal, or upon any pretense of good intention.


2. These good works, done in obedience to God's commandments, are the

fruits and evidences of a true and lively faith: and by them believers

manifest their thankfulness, strengthen their assurance, edify their

brethren, adorn the profession of the gospel, stop the mouths of the

adversaries, and glorify God, whose workmanship they are, created in

Christ Jesus thereunto, that, having their fruit unto holiness, they

may have the end, eternal life.


3. Their ability to do good works is not at all of themselves, but

wholly from the Spirit of Christ.  And that they may be enabled

thereunto, besides the graces they have already received, there is

required an actual influence of the same Holy Spirit to work in them

to will and to do of his good pleasure; yet are they not hereupon to

grow negligent, as if they were not bound to perform any duty unless

upon a special motion of the Spirit; but they ought to be diligent in

stirring up the grace of God that is in them.


4. They, who in their obedience, attain to the greatest height which

is possible in this life, are so far from being able to supererogate

and to do more than God requires, that they fall short of much which

in duty they are bound to do.


5. We cannot, by our best works, merit pardon of sin, or eternal life,

at the hand of God, because of the great disproportion that is between

them and the glory to come, and the infinite distance that is between

us and God, whom by them we can neither profit, nor satisfy for the

debt of our former sins; but when we have done all we can, we have

done but our duty, and are unprofitable servants: and because, as they

are good, they proceed from his Spirit; and as they are wrought by us,

they are defiled and mixed with so much weakness and imperfection that

they cannot endure the severity of God's judgment.


6. Yet notwithstanding, the persons of believers being accepted

through Christ, their good works also are accepted in him, not as

though they were in this life wholly unblamable and unreprovable in

God's sight; but that he, looking upon them in his Son, is pleased to

accept and reward that which is sincere, although accompanied with

many weaknesses and imperfections.


7. Works done by unregenerate men, although for the matter of them

they may be things which God commands, [PCUS and of good use both in

themselves and others;] [UPCUSA and in themselves praiseworthy and

useful, and although the neglect of such things is sinful and

displeasing unto God;] yet, because they proceed not from a heart

purified by faith; nor are done in a right manner, according to the

Word; nor to a right end, the glory of God; they [PCUS are therefore

sinful and cannot please God, or make a] [UPCUSA come short of what

God requires, and do not make any] man meet to receive [PCUS grace

from] [UPCUSA the grace of] God.  [PCUS And yet their neglect of them

is more sinful, and displeasing unto God.]


		Of The Perseverance of the Saints


1. They whom God hath accepted in his Beloved, effectually called and

sanctified by his Spirit, can neither totally nor finally fall away

from the state of grace; but shall certainly persevere therein to the

end, and be eternally saved.


2. This perseverance of the saints depends, not upon their own

free-will, but upon the immutability of the decree of election,

flowing from the free and unchangeable love of God the Father; upon

the efficacy of the merit and intercession of Jesus Christ; the

abiding of the Spirit and of the seed of God within them; and the

nature of the covenant of grace; from all which ariseth also the

certainty and infallibility thereof.


3. Nevertheless they may, through the temptations of Satan and of the

world, the prevelancy of corruption remaining in them, and the neglect

of the means of their perseverance, fall into grievous sins; ad for a

time continue therein: whereby they incur God's displeasure, and

grieve his Holy Spirit; come to be deprived of some measure of their

graces and comforts; have their hearts hardened, and their consciences

wounded; hurt and scandalize others, and bring temporal judgments upon



	    Of the Assurance of Grace and Salvation


1. Although hypocrites, and other unregenerate men, may vainly deceive

themselves with false hopes and carnal presumptions: of being in the

favor of God and estate of salvation; which hope of theirs shall

perish: yet such as truly believe in the Lord Jesus, and love him in

sincerity, endeavoring to walk in all good conscience before him, may

in this life be certainly assured that they are in a state of grace,

and may rejoice in the hope of the glory of God: which hope shall

never make them ashamed.


2. This certainty is not a bare conjectural and probably persuasion,

grounded upon a fallible hope; but an infallible assurance of faith,

founded upon the divine truth of the promises of salvation, the inward

evidence of those graces unto which these promises are made, the

testimony of the Spirit of adoption witnessing with our spirits that

we are the children of God; which Spirit is the earnest of our

inheritance, whereby we are sealed to the day of redemption.


3. This infallible assurance doth not so belong to the essence of

faith but that a true believer may wait long and conflict with many

difficulties before he be partaker of it: yet, being enabled by the

Spirit to know the things which are freely given him of God, he may,

without extraordinary revelation, in the right use of ordinary means,

attain thereunto.  And therefore it is the duty of everyone to give

all diligence to make his calling and election sure; that thereby his

heart may be enlarged in peace and joy in the Holy Ghost, in love and

thankfulness to God, and in strength and cheerfulness in the duties of

obedience, the proper fruits of this assurance: so far is it from

inclining men to looseness.


4. True believers may have the assurance of their salvation divers

ways shaken, diminished, and intermitted; as, by negligence in

preserving of it; by falling into some special sin, which woundeth the

conscience, and grievth the Spirit; by some sudden or vehement

temptation; by God's withdrawing the light of his countenance and

suffering even such as fear him to walk in darkness and to have no

light: yet are they never utterly destitute of that seed of God, and

life of faith, that love of Christ and the brethren, that sincerity of

heart and conscience of duty, out of which, by the operation of the

Spirit, this assurance may in due time be revived, and by the which,

in the meantime, they are supported from utter despair.


			Of the Law of God


1. God gave to Adam a law, as a covenant of works, by which he bound

him and all his posterity to personal, entire, exact, and perpetual

obedience; promised life upon the fulfilling, and threatened death

upon the breach of it; and endued him with power and ability to keep



2. This law, after his Fall, continued to be a perfect rule of

righteousness; and, as such, was delivered by God upon mount Sinai in

ten commandments, and written in two tables; the first four

commandments containing our duty toward God, and the other six our

duty to man.


3. Besides this law, commonly called moral, God was pleased to give to

the people of Israel, as a Church under age, ceremonial laws,

containing several typical ordinances, partly of worship, prefiguring

Christ, his graces, actions, sufferings, and benefits; and partly

holding forth divers instructions of moral duties.  All which

ceremonial laws are now abrogated under the New Testament.


4. To them also, as a body politic, he gave sundry judicial laws,

which expired together with the state of that people, not obliging any

other, now, further than the general equity thereof may require.


5. The moral law doth forever bind all, as well justified persons as

others, to the obedience thereof; and that not only in regard of the

matter contained in it, but also in respect of the authority of God

the Creator who gave it.  Neither doth Christ in the gospel any way

dissolve, but much strengthen, this obligation.


6. Although true believers be not under the law as a covenant of

works, to be thereby justified or condemned; yet is it of great use to

them, as well as to others; in that, as a rule of life, informing

them of the will of God and their duty, it directs and binds them to

walk accordingly; discovering also the sinful pollutions of their

nature, hearts, and lives; so as, examining themselves thereby, they

may come to further conviction of, humiliation for, and hatred against

sin; together with a clearer sight of the need they have of Christ,

and the perfection of his obedience.  It is likewise of use to the

regenerate, to restrain their corruptions, in that it forbids sin, and

the threatenings of it serve to show what even their sins deserve, and

what afflictions in this life they may expect for them, although freed

from the curse thereof threatened in the law.  The promises of it, in

like manner, show them God's approbation of obedience, and what

blessings they may expect upon the performance thereof; although not

as due to them by the law as a covenant of works: so as a man's doing

good, and refraining from evil, because the law encourageth to the

one, and deterreth from the other, is no evidence of his being under

the law, and not under grace.


6. Neither are the forementioned uses of the law contrary to the grace

of the gospel, but do sweetly comply with it: the Spirit of Christ

subduing and enabling the will of man to do that freely and

cheerfully, which the will of God, revealed in the law, requireth to

be done.


			Of Christian Liberty

		     and Liberty of Conscience


1. The liberty which Christ hath purchased for believers under the

gospel consists in their freedom from the guilt of sin, the condemning

wrath of God, the curse of the moral law; and in their being delivered

from thos present evil world, bondage to Satan, and dominion of sin,

from the evil of afflictions, the sting of death, the victory of the

grave, and everlasting damnation; as also in their free access to God,

and their yielding obedience unto him, not out of slavish fear, but a

childlike love, and a willing mind.  All which were common also to

believers under the law; but under the New Testament, the liberty of

Christians is further enlarged in their freedom from the yoke of the

ceremonial law, to which the Jewish church was subjected; and in

greater boldness of access to the throne of grace, and in [PCUS

fuller] [UPCUSA full] communications of the free Spirit of God, than

believers under the law did ordinarily partake of.


2. God alone is Lord of the conscience, and hath left it free from the

doctrines and commandments of men which are in anything contrary to

his Word, or beside it in matters of faith on worship.  So that to

believe such doctrines, or to obey such commandments out of

conscience, is ts betray true liberty of conscience; and the requiring

an implicit faith, and an absolute and blind obedience, is to destroy

liberty of conscience, and reason also.


3. They who, upon pretense of Christian liberty, do practice any sin,

or cherish any lust, do thereby destroy the end of Christian liberty;

which is, that, being delivered out of the hands of our enemies, we

might serve the Lord without fear, in holiness and righteousness

before him, all the days of our life.


4. And because the powers which God hath ordained, and the liberty

which Christ hath purchased, are not intended by God to destroy, but

mutually to uphold and preserve one another; they who, upon pretense

of Christian liberty, shall oppose any lawful power, or the lawful

exercise of it, whether it be civil or ecclesiastical, resist the

ordinance of God.  And for their publishing of such opinions, or

maintaining of such practices, as are contrary to the light of nature,

or to the known principles of Christianity, whether concerning faith,

worship, or conversation; or to the power of godliness; or such

erroneous opinions or practices as, either in their own nature, or in

the manner of publishing or maintaining them, are destructive to the

external peace and order which Christ hath established in the church:

they may be lawfully called to account, and proceeded against by the

censures of the Church.


			Of Religious Worship

			and the Sabbath Day


1. The light of nature showeth that there is a God, who hath lordship

and sovereignty over all; is good, and doeth good unto all; and is

therefore to be feared, loved, praised, called upon, trusted in, and

served with all the hearth, and with all the soul, and with all the

might.  But the acceptable way of worshipping the true God is

instituted by himself, and so limited by his own revealed will, that

he may not be worshipped according to the imaginations and devices of

men, or the suggestions of Satan, under any visible representation or

any other way not prescribed in the Holy Scripture.


2. Religious worship is to be given to God, the Father, Son, and Holy

Ghost; and to him alone: not to angels, saints, or any other creature:

and since the Fall, not without a Mediator; nor in the mediation of

any other but of Christ alone.


3. Prayer with thanksgiving, being one special part of religious

worship, is by God required of all men; and that it may be accepted,

it is to be made in the name of the Son, by the help of his Holy

Spirit, according to his will, with understanding, reverence,

humility, fervency, faith, love, and perseverance; and, if vocal, in a

known tongue.


4. Prayer is to be made for things lawful, and for all sorts of men

living, or that shall live hereafter, but not for the dead.


5. The reading of the Scriptures with godly fear; the sound preaching,

and conscionable hearing of the Word, in obedience unto God with

understanding, faith, and reverence; singing of psalms with grace in

the heart; as, also, the due administration and worthy receiving of

the sacraments instituted by Christ; are all parts of the ordinary

religious worship of God: besides religious oaths, and vows, solemn

fastings, and thanksgivings upon special occasion; which are, in their

several times and seasons, to be used in an holy and religious manner.


6. Neither prayer, nor any other part of religious worship, is now,

under the gospel, either tied unto, or made more acceptable to, any

place in which it is performed, or towards which it is directed: but

God is to be worshipped everywhere in spirit and in truth; as in

private families daily, and in secret each one by himself, so more

solemnly in the public assemblies, which are not carelessly or

willfully to be neglected or forsaken, when God, by his Word or

providence, calleth thereunto.


7. As it is of the law of nature that, in general, a due proportion of

time be set apart for the worship of God; so, in his Word, by a

positive, moral, and perpetual commandment, binding all men in all

ages, he hath particularly appointed one day in seven for a Sabbath,

to be kept holy unto him: which, from the beginning of the world to

the resurrection of Christ, was the last day of the week; and, from

the resurrection of Christ, was changed into the first day of the

week, which in Scripture is called the Lord's Day, and is to be

continued to the end of the world as the Christian Sabbath.


8. This Sabbath is to be kept holy unto the Lord when men, after a due

preparing of their hearts, and ordering of their common affairs

beforehand, do not only observe an holy rest all the day from their

own works, words, and thoughts about their wordly employments and

recreations; but also are taken up the whole time in the public and

private exercises of his worship, and in the duties of necessity and



		      Of Lawful Oaths and Vows


1. A lawful oath is a part of religious worship, wherein upon just

occasion, the person swearing solemnly calleth God to witness what he

asserteth or promiseth; and to judge him according to the truth or

falsehood of what he sweareth.


2. The name of God only is that by which men ought to swear, and

therein it is to be used with all holy fear and reverence; therefore

to swear vainly or rashly by that glorious and dreadful name, or to

swear at all by any other thing, is sinful, and to be abhorred.  Yet,

as, in matters of weight and moment, an oath is warranted by the Word

of God, under the New Testament, as well as under the Old, so a lawful

oath, being imposed by lawful authority, in such matters ought to be



3. Whosoever taketh and oath ought duly to consider the weightiness of

so solemn an act, and therein to avouch nothing but what he is fully

persuaded is the truth.  Neither may any man bind himself by oath to

anything but what is good and just, and what he believeth so to be,

and what he is able and resolved to perform.  [PCUS Yet is is a sin to

refuse an oath touching anything that is good and just, being imposed

by lawful authority.]


4. An oath is to be taken in the plain and common sense of the words,

without equivocation or mental reservation.  It cannot oblige to sin;

but in anything not sinful, being taken, it binds to performance,

although to a man's own hurt: nor is it to be violated, although made

to heretics or infidels.


5. A vow is of the like nature with a promissory oath, and ought to be

made with the like religious care, and to be performed with the like



6. It is not to be made to any creature, but to God alone: and that it

may be accepted, it is to be made voluntarily, out of faith and

conscience of duty, in way of thankfulness for mercy received, or for

obtaining of what we want; whereby we more strictly bind ourselves to

necessary duties, or to other things, so far and so long as they may

fitly conduce thereto.


7. No man may vow to do anything forbidden in the Word of God, or what

would hinder any duty therein commanded, or which is not in his own

power, and for the performance of which he hath no promise or ability

from God.  In which respects, monastical vows of perpetual single

life, professed poverty, and regular obedience, are so far from being

degrees of higher perfection, that they are superstitious and sinful

snares, in which no Christian may entangle himself.


		     Of the Civil Magistrate


1. God, the Supreme Lord and King of all the world, hath ordained

civil magistrates to be under him over the people, for his own glory

and the public good; and to this end, hath armed them with the power

of the sword, for the defense and encouragement of them that are good,

and for the punishment of evildoers.


2. It is lawful for Christians to accept and execute the office of a

magistrate when called thereunto; in the managing whereof, as they

ought especially to maintain piety, justice, and peace, according to

the wholesome laws of each commonwealth, so, for that end, they may

lawfully, now under the New Testament, wage war upon just and

necessary occasions.


3. Civil magistrates may not assume to themselves the administration

of the Word and Sacraments; or the power of the keys of the kingdom of

heaven; or, in the least, interfere in matters of faith.  Yet, as

nursing fathers, it is the duty of civil magistrates to protect the

church of our common Lord, without giving the preference to any

denomination of Christians above the rest, in such a manner that all

ecclesiastical persons whatever shall enjoy the full, free, and

unquestioned liberty of discharging every aprt of their sacred

functions, without violence or danger.  And, as Jesus Christ hath

appointed a regular government and discipline in his church, no law of

any commonwealth should interfere with, let, or hinder, the due

exercise thereof, among the voluntary members of any denomination of

Christians, according to their own profession of belief.  It is the

duty of civil magistrates to protect the person and good name of all

their people, in such an effectual manner as that no person be

suffered, either upon pretense of religion or infidelity, to offer any

indignity, violence, abuse, or injury to any other person whatsoever:

and to take order, that all religious and ecclesiastical assemblies be

held without molestation or disturbance.


4. It is the duty of the people to pray for magistrates, to honor

their persons, to pay them tribute and other dues, to obey their

lawful commands, and to be subject to their authority, for conscience'

sake.  Infidelity, or difference in religion, doth not make boid the

magistrate's just and legal authority, nor free the people from their

obedience to him: from which ecclesiastical persons are not exempted;

much less hath the Pope any power or jurisdiction over them in their

dominions, or over any of their people; and least of all to deprive

them of their dominions or lives, if he shall judge them to be

heretics, or upon any other pretense whatsoever.


		     Of Marriage and Divorce


1. Christian marriage is an institution ordained of God, blessed by

our Lord Jesus Christ, established and sanctified for the happiness

and welfare of mankind, into which spiritual and physical union one

man and one woman enter, cherishing a mutual esteem and love, bearing

with each other's infirmities and weaknesses, comfortin each other in

trouble, providing in honesty and industry for each other and for

their household, praying for each other, and living together the

length of their days as heirs of the grace of life.


2. Because the corruption of man is apt unduly to put asunder those

whom God hath joined together in marriage, and because the Church is

concerned with the establishment of marriage in the Lord as Scripture

sets it forth, and with the present penitence as well as with the past

innocence or guilt of those whose marriage has been broken; therefore

as a breach of that holy relation may occasion divorce, so remarriage

after a divorce granted on grounds explicity stated in Scripture or

implicit in the gospel of Christ may be sanctioned in keeping with his

redemptive gospel, when sufficient penitence for sin and failure is

evidence, and a firm purpose of and endeavor after Christian marriage

is manifest.


		     Of Marriage and Divorce


1. Marriage is a union between one man and one woman, designed of God

to last so long as they both shall live.


2. Marriage is designed for the mutual help of husband and wife; for

the safeguarding, undergirding, and development of their moral and

spiritual character; for the propagation of children and the rearing

of them in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.


3. All persons who are able with judgment to give their consent may

marry, except within the limits of blood relationship forbidden by

Scripture, and such marriages are valid before God in the eyes of the

church.  But no marriage can be fully and securely Christian in spirit

or in purpose unless both partners are committed to a common Christian

faith and to a deeply shared intention of building a Christian home.

Evangelical Christians should seek as partners in marriage only

persons who hold in common a sound basis of evangelical faith.


4. Marriage for the Christian has religoius as well as civil

significance.  The distinctive contribution of the church in

performing the marriage ceremony is to affirm the divine institution

of marriage; to invoke God's blessing upon those who enter into the

marital relationship in accordance with his word; to hear the vows of

those who desire to be married; and to assure the married partners of

God's grace within their new relationship.


5. It is the divine intention that persons entering the marriage

covenant become inseparably united, thus allowing for no dissolution

save that caused by the death of either husband or wife.  However, the

weaknesses of one or both partners may lead to gross and persistent

denial of the marriage vows so that marriage dies at the heart and the

union become intolerable; yet only in cases of extreme, unrepented-of,

and irremedial unfaithfulness (physical or spiritual) should

separation or divorce be considered.  Such separation or divorce is

accepted as permissable only because of the failure of one or both of

the partners, and does not lessen in any way the divine intention for

indissoluble union.


6. The remarriage of divorced persons may be sanctioned by the church,

in keeping with the redemptive gospel of Christ, when sufficient

penitence for sin and failure is evidence, and a firm purpose of and

endeavor after Christian marriage is manifested.


7. Divorced persons should give prayerful thought to discover if God's

vocation for them is to remain unmarried, since one failure in this

realm raises serious question as to the rightness and wisdom of

undertaking another union.


			   Of the Church


1. The catholic or universal church, which is invisible, consists of

the whole number of the elect, that have been, are, or shall be

gathered into one, under Christ the head thereof; and is the spouse,

the body, the fullness of Him that filleth all in all.


2. The visible Church, which is also catholic or universal under the

gospel (not confined to one nation as before under the law), consists

of all those throughout the world that profess the true religion,

together with their children; and is the Kingdom of the Lord Jesus

Christ; the house and family of God, through which men are ordinarily

saved and union with which is essential to their best growth and



3. Unto this catholic and visible Church, Christ hath given the

ministry, oracles, and ordinances of God, for the gathering and

perfecting of the saints, in this life, to the end of the world; and

doth by his own presence and Spirit, according to his promise, make

them effectual thereunto.


4. This catholic Church hath been sometimes more, sometimes less,

visible.  And particular churches, which are members thereof, are more

or less pure, according as the doctrine of the gospel is taught and

embraced, ordinances administered, and public worship performed more

or less purely in them.


5. The purest churches under heaven are subject both to mixture and

error: and some have so degenerated as to become apparently no

churches of Christ.  Nevertheless, there shall be always a Church on

earth, to worship God according to his will.


6. The Lord Jesus Christ is the only head of the Church, and the claim

of any man to be the vicar of Christ and the head of the Church is

[PCUS without warrant in fact or in Scripture, even anti-Christian,]

[UPCUSA unscriptural, without warrant in fact, and is] a usurpation

dishonoring to the Lord Jesus Christ.


		   Of the Communion of the Saints


1. All saints [PCUS being] [UPCUSA that are] united to Jesus Christ

their head, by his Spirit and by faith, have fellowship with him in

his graces, sufferings, death, resurrection, and glory: and, being

united to one another in love, they have communion in each other's

gifts and graces, and are obliged to the performance of such duties,

public and private, as to conduce to their mutual good, both in the

inward and outward man.


2. Saints by [PCUS their] profession are bound to maintain an holy

fellowship and communion in the worship of God, and in performing such

other spiritual services as tend to their mutual edification; as also

in relieving each other in outward things, according to their several

abilities and necesities.  Which communion, as God offereth

opportunity, is to be extended unto all those who, in every place,

call upno the name of the Lord Jesus.


3. This communion which the saints have with Christ, doth not make

them in any wise partakers of the substance of the Godhead, or to be

equal with Christ in any respect: either of which to affirm, is

impious and blasphemous.  Nor doth their communion one with another as

saints, take away or infringe the title or property which each man

hath in his goods and possessions.


			 Of the Sacraments


1. Sacraments are holy signs and seals of the covenant of grace,

immediately instituted by God, to represent Christ and his benefits,

and to confirm our interest in him: as also to put a visible

difference between those that belong unto the church, and the rest of

thw world; and solemnly to engage them to the service of God in

Christ, according to his Word.


2. There is in every sacrament a spiritual relation, or sacramental

union, between the sign and the thing signified; whence it comes to

pass that the names and effects of the one are attributed to the



3. The grace which is exhibited in or by the sacraments, rightly used,

is not conferred by any power in them; neither doth the efficacy of a

sacrament depend upon the piety or intention of him that doth

administer it, but upon the work of the Spirit, and the word of

institution, which conatins, together with a precept authorizing the

use thereof, a promise of benefit to worthy receivers.


4. There be only two sacraments ordained by Christ our Lord in the

gospels, that is to say, baptism and the supper of the Lord: neither

or which may be dispensed by any but a minister of the Word, lawfully



5. The sacraments of the Old Testament, in regard of the spiritual

things thereby signified and exhibited, were, for substance, the same

with those of the New.


			    Of Baptism


1. Baptism is a sacrament of the New Testament, ordained by Jesus

Christ, not only for the solemn admission of the party baptized into

the visible Church, but also to be unto him a sign and seal of the

covenant of grace, or his ingrafting into Christ, of regeneration, of

remission of sins, and of his giving up unto God, through Jesus

Christ, to walk in newness of life: which sacrament is, by Christ's

own appointment, to be continued in his churchy until the end of the



2. The outward element to be used in the sacrament is water, wherewith

the party is to be baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son,

and of the Holy Ghost, by a minister of the gospel, lawfully called



3. Dipping of the person into the water is not necessary; but baptism

is rightly administered by pouring or sprinkling water upon the



4. Not only those that do actually profess faith in and obedience unto

Christ, but also the infants of one or both believing parents are to

be baptized.


5. Although it be a great sin to contemn or neglect this ordinance,

yet grace and salvation are not so inseparably annexed unto it as that

no person can be regenerated or saved without it, or that all that are

baptized are undoubtedly regenerated.


6. The efficacy of Baptism is not tied to that moment of time wherein

it is administered; yet, notwithstanding, by the right use of this

ordinancy the grace promised is not only offered, but really exhibited

and conferred by the Holy Ghost, to such (whether of age or infants)

as that grace belongeth unto, according to the counsel of God's own

will, in his appointed time.


7. The sacrament of Baptism is but once to be administered to any



		       Of the Lord's Supper


1. Our Lord Jesus, in the night wherein he was betrayed, instituted

the sacrament of his body and blood, called the Lord's Supper, to be

observed in his Church unto the end of the world; for the perpetual

remembrance of the sacrifice of himself in his death, the sealing all

benefits thereof unto true believers, their spiritual nourishment and

growth in him, their further engagement in and to all duties which

they owe unto him; and to be a bond and pledge of their communion with

him, and with each other, as members of his mystical body.


2. In this sacrament Christ is not offered up to his Father, nor any

real sacrifice made at all for remission of sins of the quick or dead,

but a commemoration of that [PCUS one] [UPCUSA once] offering up of

himself, by himself, upon the cross, once and for all, and a spiritual

oblation of all possible praise unto God for the same; so that the

so-called sacrifice of the mass is most contradictory to Christ's

[PCUSA one] [UPCUSA own] sacrifice, the only propitiation for all the

sins of the elect.


3. The Lord Jesus hath, in this ordinance, appointed his ministers to

declare his word of institution to the people, to pray, and bless the

elements of bread and wine, and thereby to set them apart from a

common to any holy use; and to take and break the bread, to take the

cup, and (they communicating also themselves) to give both to the

communicants; [UPCUSA but to none who are not then present in the



4. Private masses, or receiving this sacrament by a priest, or any

other, alone; as likewise the denial of the cup to the people;

worshipping the elements, the lifting them up, or carrying them about

for adoration, and the reserving of them for any pretended religious

use, are all contrary to the nature of this sacrament, and to the

institution of Christ.


5. The outward elements in this sacrament, duly set apart to the uses

ordained by Christ, have such relation to him crucified, as that

truly, yet sacramentally only, they are sometimes called by the name

of the thigns they represent, to wit, the body and blood of Christ;

albeit, in substance and nature, they still remain truly, and only,

bread and wine, as they were before.


6. That doctrine which maintains a change of the substance of bread

and wine, into the substance of Christ's body and blood (commonly

called transubstantiation) by consecration of a priest, or by any

other way, is repugnant, not to Scripture alone, but even to common

sense and reason; overthroweth the nature of the sacrament; and hath

been, and is, the cause of manifold superstitions, yea, of gross



7. Worthy receivers, outwardly partaking of the visible elements in

this sacrament, do then also inwardly by faith, really and indeed, yet

not carnally and corporally, but spiritually, receive and feed upon

Christ crucified, and all benefits of his death: the body and blood of

Christ being then not corporally or carnally in, with, or under the

bread and wine; yet as really, but spiritually, present to the faith

of believers in that ordinance, as the elements themselves are to

their outward senses.


8. Although ignorant and wicked men receive the outward elements in

this sacrament, yet they receive not the thing signified thereby; but

by their unworthy coming thereunto are guilty of the body and blood of

the Lord, and bring judgment on themselves.  [UPCUSA Wherefore all

ignorant and ungodly persons, as they are unfit to enjoy communion

with him, so are they unworthy of the Lord's Table, and cannot,

without great sin against Christ, while they remain such, partake of

these holy mysteries, or be admitted thereunto.]


			 Of Church Censures


1. The Lord Jesus, as king and head of his Church, hath therein

appointed a government in the hand of Church officers, distinct from

the civil magistrate.


2. To these officers the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven are committed,

by virtue whereof they have power respectively to retain and remit

sins, to shut that kingdom against the impenitent, both by the word

and censures; and to open it unto penitent sinners, by the ministry of

the gospel, and by absolution from censures, as occasion shall



3. Church censures are necessary for the reclaiming and gaining of

offending brethren; for deterring of others from like offenses; for

purging out of that leaven which might infect the whole lump; for

vindicating the honor of Christ, and the holy profession of the

gospel; and for preventing the wrath of God, which might justly fall

upon the Church, if they should suffer his covenant, and the seals

thereof, to be profaned by notorious and obstinate offenders.


4. For the better attaining of these ends, the officers of the church

are to proceed by admonition, suspension from the sacrament of the

Lord's Supper for a season, and by excommunication from the Church,

according to the nature of the crime, and demerit of the person.


		       Of Synods and Councils


1. For the better government and further edification of the Church,

there ought to be such assemblies as are commonly called synods or

councils and it belongeth to the overseers and other rulers of the

particular churches, by virtue of their office, and the power which

Christ hath given them for edification, and not for destruction, to

appoint such assemblies, and to convene together in them, as often as

they shall judge it expedient for the good of the Church.


2. It belongeth to synods and councils, ministerially, to determine

controversies of faith, and cases of conscience, to set down rules and

directions for the better ordering of the public worship of God, and

government of his Church; to receive complaints in cases of

mal-administration, and authoritatively to determine the same: which

decrees and determinations, if consonant to the Word of God, are to be

received with reverence and submission, not only for their agreement

with the Word, but also for the power whereby they are made, as being

an ordinance of God, appointed thereunto in his Word.


3. All synods or councils since the apostles' times, whether general

or particular, may err, and many have erred; therefore they are not to

be made the rule of faith or practice, but to be used as a help in



4. Synods and councils are to handle or conclude nothing but that

which is ecclesiastical: and are not to intermeddle with civil affairs

which concern the commonwealth unless by way of humble petition in

cases extraordinary; or by way of advice for satisfaction of

conscience, if they be thereunto required by the civil magistrate.


		   Of the State of Man After Death

		 and of the Resurrection of the Dead


1. The bodies of men, after death, return to dust, and see corruption;

but their souls (which neither die nor sleep), having an immortal

subsistence, immediately return to God who gave them.  The souls of

the righteous, being then made perfect in holiness, are received into

the highest heavens, where they behold the face of God in light and

glory, waiting for the full redemption of their bodies; and the souls

of the wicked are cast into hell, where they remain in torments and

utter darkness, reserved to the judgment of the great day.  Besides

these two places for souls separated from their bodies, the Scripture

acknowledgeth none.


2. At the last day, such as are found alive shall not die, but be

changed: and all the dead shall be raised up with the self-same

bodies, and none other, although with different qualities, which shall

be united again to their souls forever.


3. The bodies of the unjust shall, by the power of Christ, be raised

to dishonor; the bodies of the just, by his Spirit, unto honor, and be

made conformable to his own glorious body.


		       Of the Last Judgment


1. God hath appointed a day, wherein he will judge the world in

righteousness by Jesus Christ, to whom all power and judgment is given

of the Father.  In which day, not only the apostate angels shall be

judged; but likewise all persons, that have lived upon earth, shall

appear before the tribunal of Christ, to give an account of their

thoughts, words, and deeds; and to receive according to what they have

done in the body, whether good or evil.


2. The end of God's appointing this day, is for the manifestation of

the glory of his mercy in the eternal salvation of the elect; and of

his justice in the damnation of the reprobate, who are wicked and

disobedient.  For then shall the righteous go into everlasting life,

and receive that fullness of joy and refreshing which shall come from

the presence of the Lord: but the wicked, who know not God, and obey

not the gospel of Jesus Christ, shall be cast into eternal torments,

and punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the

Lord, and from the glory of his power.


3. As Christ would have us to be certainly persuaded that there shall

be a day of judgment, both to deter all men from sin, and for the

greater consolation of the godly in their adversity: so will he have

that day unknown to men, that they may shake off all carnal security,

and be always watchful, because they know not at what hour the Lord

will come; and may be ever prepared to say, Come, Lord Jesus, come

quickly.  Amen.

[Chapters XXXIV and XXXV of the UPCUSA version, (paragraphs 6.183 to

6.190) are above, as chapters IX and X of the PCUS version (paragraphs

6.051 to 6.058).]

		   Declaratory Statement (UPCUSA)


While the ordination vow of ministers, ruling elders, and deacons, as

set forth in the Form of Government, requires the reception and

adoption of the Confession of Faith only as containing the system of

doctrine taught in the Holy Scriptures, nevertheless, seeing that the

desire has been formally expressed for a disavowal by the Church of

certain inferences drawn from statements in the Confession of Faith,

and also for a declaration of certain aspects of revealed truth which

appear at the present time to call for more explicit statement,

therefore The Presbyterian Church in the United States of Americe does

authoritatively declare as follows:


First, with reference to Chapter III of the Confession of Faith: that

concerning those who are saved in Christ, the doctrine of God's

eternal decree is held in harmooy with the doctrine of his love to all

mankind, his gift of his Son to be the propitiation for the sins of

the whole world, and his readiness to bestow his saving grace on all

who seek it; that concerning those who perish, the doctrine of God's

eternal decree is held in harmony with the doctrine that God desires

not the death of any sinner, but has provided in Christ a salvation

sufficient for all, adapted to all, and freely offered in the gospel

to all; that men are fully responsible for their treatment of God's

gracious offer; that his decree hinders no man from accepting that

offer; and that no man is condemned except on the ground of his sin.


Second, with reference to Chapter X, Section 3, of the Confession of

Faith, that it is not to be regarded as teaching that any who die in

infancy are lost.  We believe that all dying in infancy are included

in the election of grace, and are regenerated and saved by Christ

through the Spirit, who works when and where and how he pleases.