Articles of Religion of the New Connexion, 1770
Article I. On the Fall of Man. We believe, that man was made upright in the image of God, free from all disorder natural and moral; capable of obeying perfectly the will and command of God his Maker; yet capable also of sinning: which he unhappily did, and thereby laid himself under the divine curse; which, we think, could include nothing less than the mortality of the body and the eternal punishment of the soul. His nature also became depraved; his mind was defiled; and the powers of his soul weakened-that both he was, and his posterity are, captives of Satan till set at liberty by Christ.
Article II. On the Nature and Perpetual Obligation of the Moral Law. We believe, that the moral law not only extends to the outward actions of the life, but to all the powers and faculties of the mind, to every desire, temper and thought; that it demands the entire devotion of all the powers and faculties of both body and soul to God: or, in our Lord’s words, to love the Lord with all our heart, mind, soul and strength:-that this law is of perpetual duration and obligation, to all men, at all times, and in all places or parts of the world. And, we suppose that this law was obligatory to Adam in his perfect state-was more clearly reveled in the ten commandments-and more fully explained in many other parts of the bible.
Article III. On the Person and Works of Christ. We believe, that our Lord Jesus Christ is God and man, united in one person: or possessed of divine perfection united to human nature, in a way which we pretend not to explain, but think ourselves bound by the word of God firmly to believe:-that he suffered to make a full atonement for all the sins of all men-and that hereby he has wrought out for us a compleat salvation; which is received by, and as a free gift communicated to, all that believe in him; without the consideration of any works done by us, in order to entitle us to his salvation.-Though we firmly believe, that no faith is the means of justification, but that which produces good works.
Article IV. On Salvation by Faith. We believe, that as this salvation is held forth to all whom the gospel revelation comes without exception, we ought in the course of our ministry, to propose or offer this salvation to all those who attend our ministry: and, having opened to them their ruined wretched state by nature and practice, to invite all without exception, to look to Christ by faith, without any regard to any thing in, or done by, themselves; that they may, in this way alone, that is, by faith be possessed of this salvation.
Article V. On Regeneration by the Holy Spirit. We believe, that, as the scriptures assure us, we are justified, made the children of God, purified and sanctified by faith:-that when a person comes to believe in Jesus (and not before) he is regenerated or renewed in his soul, by the spirit of God, through the instrumentality of the word, now believed and embraced; which renewal of his soul naturally produces holiness in heart and life: -that this holiness is the means of preparing us for the enjoyments and employments of the heavenly world; and of preserving in our souls a comfortable sense of our interest in the Lord, and of our title to glory; as well as to set a good example before men, and to recommend our blessed Redeemer’s cause to the world.
Article VI. On Baptism. We believe, that it is the indispensible duty of all who repent and believe the gospel, to be baptized, by immersion in water, in order to be initiated into a church state; and that no person ought to be received into the church without submission to that ordinance.