What We Believe


Who are Presbyterians?


“Presbyterians are a group of Protestants whose church is founded on the concept of democratic rule under the Word of God. The Presbyterian church is a representative democracy governed by elders elected from and by the congregation.”



 The Greek word for “elder” in the New Testament is “presbuteros”.



A Presbyterian confesses the Christian faith, trusts in Christ as our forgiving Savior, promises to follow Christ and be Christ-like, and commits themselves to the church’s work.



Presbyterians believe in:


  • God—the Creator of the universe.
  • Christ—the incarnation of God on Earth.
  • Holy Spirit—the presence of God in the world and in the believer.
  • The Church—a universal company of Christ’s followers
  • Forgiveness of Sin—made possible by the crucifixion of Jesus Christ.
  • Life Everlasting—shown by the resurrection of Jesus Christ
  • Bible—the inspired record of the Revelation of God to all.



Recognized Sacraments:


  1. Baptism—this Sacrament unites us with Jesus Christ and makes us members of God’s family, the Church.
  2. Communion—this Sacrament represents the sacrificial blood and body of Christ and recalls the last meal shared with the Apostles. Together they symbolize the New Covenant between God and all people.




The First Presbyterian Church of Irvington, NJ is a member of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) or PCUSA.


PCUSA Doctrine:


  • The Apostles Creed
  • The Nicene Creed
  • The Scots Confession, 1560
  • The Heidelberg Catechism, 1563
  • The Second Helvetic Confession, 1566
  • The Westminster Confession of Faith, 1647
  • The Larger Catechism, 1647
  • The Shorter Catechism, 1647
  • The Theological Declaration of Barmen, 1933
  • The confession of 1967
  • The Confession of Belhar
  • A Brief Statement of Faith—Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), 1991

          Click for more information on what PCUSA believes.




Source: About Being Presbyterian. 1974. 2016th ed. South Deerfield, MA: Channing Bete Company….a guide to more effective church membership