As United Methodists, we believe that God has given us principles for how to live in a community. Central to Jesus’ teachings, life, death, and resurrection is the Great Commandment: we must love God and love our neighbors as ourselves. (Matthew 22:35-40; Mark 12:28-34)
“We commit ourselves to the rights of men, women, children, youth, young adults, the aging, and people with disability; to the improvement of the quality of life; and to the rights and dignity of all persons.”
Much of the Bible is devoted to figuring out how to follow this commandment. Nearly all of Church history is filled with devout Christians struggling — with failures and successes — to live out this commandment. What does it mean to love God? What does it look like when we love our neighbor?
What we believe about the nature of God and the nature of humanity also informs our understanding. Scripture tells us God created humankind in God’s image. What does that mean for how we treat each other?
We must take these questions seriously as followers of Christ.
We believe that in loving both God and neighbor, we must pursue God’s command of justice, liberation, and flourishing for all people. We must work for the civil and human rights of every person.