New Providence Presbyterian Church - Maryville, TN
Monday, September 16, 2019
New Providence
Presbyterian Church
703 West Broadway Avenue
Maryville, TN 37801
Worship Services @ NPPC
9:00 a.m. FirstLight
11:05 a.m. Traditional
Community Benefit Sale
August 23
September 27
October 25
November 22
December 6
January 24
February 28
March 27
April 24
May 22
June 26
Antiques and Collectibles Sale
September 27
   Constant Contact
Google plus  Tumblr

Church Heritage, Theology, and Polity

The link below is to the Presbyterian Mission Agency website. The information provided is a general guide to facts about the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Some of the things you will explore include Presbyterian history, theological beliefs, and social issues. 
I. Scripture: Reformed and always reforming according to scripture
  • Every practice and belief of the church should be grounded in scripture. Nothing that cannot be demonstrated to be grounded in scripture can be regarded as binding upon the believer. This is summarized in the phase sola scriptura, “by scripture alone.”
II. Sovereignty of God: Who is in charge here?
  • “To speak of God’s sovereignty is to confess unequivocally that, despite abundant evidence to the contrary, God is in charge. . . . (It is) the doctrine that God unceasingly cares for the world, that all things are in God’s hands, and that God is leading the world to its appointed goal . . . (It) opposes the idea that all things happen by chance.” Faith Seeking Understanding
III. Election: When were you saved?
  • The key element of the Reformed Tradition is the focus on God’s saving action rather than human action. Salvation is not something we do at all. It is God who acts: it is God who saves through Jesus Christ. 
  • This is a continual lifelong process, not a once-in-a-lifetime experience. “We are converted to God little-by-little, and by stages.” – John Calvin
IV. Priesthood of All Believers: We all have a calling
“The ‘priesthood of all believers’ … all Christians can act in ‘priestly’ ways-by praying to God directly, and not having to go through a church’s ‘priest’-and that all believers may teach the Christian faith to others on the basis of their own reading of the Scriptures. . . . Presbyterian theology recognized the truth of Luther’s perspectives. We go on, however, to see also that the church itself as the covenant community of God is a ‘chosen race, a royal priesthood.’ Presbyterian Questions, Presbyterian Answers
As ‘priests’ we are called to:
  • offer Jesus Christ to the world
  • offer ourselves as ‘living sacrifices’
  • pray for others
  • carry out the mission and ministries of the church
Presbyterians are not do-it-yourselfers. We believe that groups make better decisions than individuals. We make decisions as a community. We listen to each other, believing that God speaks in the community of the church.
"All things in Scripture are not alike plain in themselves, nor alike clear unto all." Those things "necessary to be known, believed, and observed for salvation" are clear. (Westminster Confession) However, "in all controversies of religion" the church needs to use scholarly study to help us sort out our differences. That requires us all to be patient with each other and do our homework until we reach some consensus.
Diversity is good 
Presbyterians believe that the best decisions are made when the broadest possible representation of our diversity participates. We believe in the equality of all people before God, and therefore our system represents a parity, an equality, of persons. There are always both elders and ministers qualified to vote in every governing body. We seek to have women as well as men represented. We encourage people of every race and ethnicity to participate. 
Decently and in order
When it is time to make a decision, Presbyterians do not let the loudest voice win. Our system of government enables an orderly process of discerning the will of God in which everyone participates. [Robert’s Rules of Order]
Government by the book
  • The Bible
  • The constitution of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
    • The Book of Confessions (11 documents, dating from the 4th century to the late 20th century, that give us the main theological themes our ancestors in the faith found central in Scripture.)
    • The Book of Order (guidance for ordering our life as a community according to Scripture and the confessions. It sets out democratic principles of representative government and applies them to life in the church).