WHAT LUTHERANS BELIEVE
1. The Bible is the inspired, inerrant Word of God. It is His message to all people. The entire Bible points to Jesus as the Saviour. [In British jurisdictions the Bible we refer to is the Authorized or King James Version, the first translation whose historical authenticity was reliably established in the early 17th century by a large body of scholars studying many early Hebrew and Greek manuscripts.]
2. There is only one true God, revealed in the Bible as Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
3. In the beginning God created all things that exist and laid down laws of nature and human conduct to preserve His creation according to His will.
4. God created man in His own image, male and female as Adam and Eve, pure and holy, but with freedom to choose between good and evil.
5. Though God warned Adam and Eve that disobeying Him would cause them to die, they chose to listen to Satan and disobeyed God, thereby bringing sin into the world.
6. Since Adam and Eve, all mankind have been born with an inherited, innately sinful nature that causes them to disobey God’s holy will in thought, word and deed.
7. A naturally sinful nature stands in the way of mankind being restored to right relationship with God. A sinless Saviour is required to make intercession in order to bring mankind back to a right relationship with God
8. God provided that Saviour and intercessor by sending His Son, Jesus, into the world. He is both true God and true man. Jesus lived a sinless life to fulfill God's law for us, died an innocent death on the cross to pay the penalty for our sins, and rose from the dead so that we might have eternal life. He ascended into heaven, where He now sits at the right hand of the Father to intercede for us. This is the Gospel (or good news) of Jesus Christ.
9. Because of Jesus' death on the cross, God declares a person justified—or righteous—and forgiven. This happens, not because of human effort or even good works, but because the justification won by Jesus innocently enduring the sacrificial suffering and death due man for his sin debt, which is applied to every person who repents and believes in Jesus as Savior.
10. Faith in Jesus is a gift of God, given by the power of the Holy Spirit, thus all the glory belongs to God.
11. The means of grace are the Word, Holy Baptism, and Holy Communion. By these means, God applies the merits of Jesus' atoning death to all who believe in Jesus as their Saviour.
12. Jesus will come again to take all believers to Himself. On the final day, all the dead will be raised. Those believers who are still alive will be bodily transformed. After this, the final judgment will take place. Unbelievers will go into eternal damnation, and believers into eternal life.
13. The true Christian Church is made up of all believers of all times who believe in the Triune God and accept Jesus Christ as their only Savior.
14. The true visible Church is the body of believers who faithfully preach and teach God's Word and administer Holy Baptism and Holy Communion according to the teachings of Scripture.
15. Christians are called to proclaim the Gospel, to tell others that the only way of salvation is by faith in Jesus Christ, and to show their faith by their deeds of love towards others.
The basis of all Lutheran teachings is the Bible. Martin Luther and the other reformers wrote a series of documents answering accusations that their teaching was contrary to commonly held beliefs and practices of the 15th century church. These defenses and arguments, based upon the Bible, were presented before a series of theological gatherings. Eventually, they were compiled into The Book of Concord, http://bookofconcord.org/. These comprise the doctrine and confession of the Lutheran Church.