Rooted in a compassionate faith.

Our Theology

Sin, grace, and gratitude: these are the roots of our faith. We believe that we are sinners in a fallen world, and that God freely forgives us and provides us with a path to salvation. We believe we were created to be reconciled with God and offer our gratitude and praise in exchange for his gift of grace and mercy.

As Presbyterians, we are fiercely Trinitarian, seeking to know the community that is God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. At once our parent, creator, redeemer, constant companion, and source of strength. We embrace the mystery inherent in God’s multi-faceted nature, accepting that we are often left with more questions than answers.

We are also ecumenical—we see our particular congregation in the context of a larger faith family that crosses denominational lines. We trust that God works beyond the boundaries of our church—and, indeed, beyond our understanding.

Our Convictions

When it really comes down to it, faith doesn't hinge on belief alone. No—it is a thing of doing rather than being. We believe that faith is lived out through the lifelong practice of reconciling ourselves with God and with others. We are each called to this ministry of reconciliation, enacting in our own lives and relationships the grace, love, and mercy extended to us first by God.

The gospel is not a doctrine of the tongue, but of life. It cannot be grasped by reason and memory only, but it is fully understood when it possesses the whole soul and penetrates to the inner recesses of the heart.
— John Calvin, Golden Booklet of the True Christian Life

As a congregation, we share in this journey of faith together, asking tough questions, ministering to each other, and seeking out who God is calling us to be. On this journey, we understand that God’s mystery abounds and that sometimes there are more questions than answers. All are welcome here, wherever they may be in their quest for God.

First Presbyterian Church of Tyler is affiliated with the Presbyterian Church (USA), our denomination’s governing body. This means that we follow a Reformed theology as outlined in the Book of Confessions and that our governance is Presbyterian—ruled by presbuteros, literally elders or wise ones—as specified in the Book of Order, all under the authority of the Word of God.