25 Articles of Religion (Simplified)

Our Twenty-Five Articles of Religion, can be found in The Doctrines and Discipline of the African Methodist Episcopal Church and cannot be changed under any circumstances by the vote of the general Church.
We believe:
  1. That there is one God who interacts with us as God the Father, who created all that is, God the Son, who saved us from our sins, and God the Holy Ghost, who lives in and directs the lives of all believers. The three persons of God are of one substance and always work for our well being.
  2. That Jesus is the Christ (which in Greek means the Messiah or Anointed One) who came into this world born of a virgin as God in human form – the Word of God made flesh – to show us how to live and to save us from our sins by dying for us.
  3. That Christ died on the Cross and arose from the dead in body and spirit three days later to guarantee us everlasting life.
  4. That the Holy Ghost does not just anoint us in worship but guides and directs our daily living.
  5. That sixty six canonical books of the Scriptures are sufficient in direction and instruction for our salvation as the inspired Word of the Lord recorded by humankind.
  6. That the Old Testament is as essential for our salvation as is the New Testament. The Old Testament shows that we can’t save ourselves by our work, and can only be saved by the Grace of the Lord Jesus Christ.
  7. That all of us are heirs of Adam and inherited the tendencies to sin shown in the original sin of Adam.
  8. That because we are heirs of original sin, we cannot exercise the free will to save our souls.
  9. That we are justified not by our work, but by the saving Grace of the Lord Jesus Christ.
  10. That the good works that we do spring from our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and our willingness to walk in the Spirit of God.
  11. That the idea of works of supererogation – works beyond what we need for salvation, is not relevant because the good that we do is offset by the bad that we do.
  12. That, while we all sin after justification, we can be forgiven if we earnestly ask the Lord to forgive us.
  13. That the church is not a building, but is a congregation of the called out of God who come together for worship, sacramental sharing fellowship, instruction, mutual support and service.
  14. That there is no such place as purgatory.
  15. That worship should always be done in a language that can be understood by the worshipers.
  16. That there are two Sacraments ordained by Christ – Baptism, because Christ submitted to Baptism, and The Lord’s Supper, because Christ instituted it so that we can remember His sacrifice.
  17. That Baptism, regardless of the means, is an outward sign of an inner change, and that children of the church should be Baptized.
  18. That the Lord’s Supper is our sacred way of remembering that the Body and Blood of Christ were offered for our salvation.
  19. That all worshipers are entitled to the Lord’s Supper in both kinds – the bread and the beverage.
  20. That the one oblation of Christ upon the cross was the sacrifice for our sins and that no other signs or symbols are needed as aids for our forgiveness or salvation.
  21. That the marriage of ministers is appropriate and encouraged so that the clergy can be productive members of their families, communities and the family of believers.
  22. That the rites and ceremonies of the church should be sufficiently standard to allow worshipers in any AME Church to find common ground, but flexible enough to allow for local custom and for the work of the Holy Spirit.
  23. That the Rulers of the United States of America or of any country and their just laws are to be respected by the family of God.
  24. That the goods of a Christian are gifts from God to the individual and not common property, but should be shared for the work of the church.
  25. That the taking of oaths is permissible in a court of law, but that Christians should not swear vain and rash oaths that we can’t keep because of our human frailty.