United Methodists insist that faith and good works belong together. What we believe must be confirmed by what we do. Personal salvation must be expressed in ministry and mission in the world. We believe that Christian doctrine and Christian ethics are inseparable, that faith should inspire service. The integration of personal piety and social holiness has been a hallmark of our tradition. We affirm the biblical precept that "faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead" (James 2:17).
Excerpt from The United Methodist Primer, 2005 Revised Edition by Chester E. Custer (Discipleship Resources, 2005); p. 59.
We believe that God is Crazy, Madly, Deeply in Love with all of us. Because God loves us "he gave his only begotten son" (John 3;16) to die for us. Our response to God's love is to offer our lives back to God through a life of service. As disciples, we become active participants in God’s Kingdom work in the world through mission and service. "Love of God is always linked to love of neighbor and to a passionate commitment to seeking justice and renewal in the world."
Excerpt from http://www.umc.org/site/c.lwL4KnN1LtH/b.2310047/k.4669/Our_Wesleyan_Theological_Heritage.htm on August 2, 2010
For Wesley, there was no religion but social religion, no holiness but social holiness. In other words, faith always includes a social dimension. One cannot be a solitary Christian. As we grow in faith through our participation in the church community, we are also nourished and equipped for mission and service to the world.
"From Wesley's time to the present, Methodism has sought to be both a nurturing community and a servant community. Members of Methodist Societies and class meetings met for personal nurture through giving to the poor, visiting the imprisoned, and working for justice and peace in the community. They sought not only to receive the fullness of God's grace for themselves; but...they saw themselves as existing 'to reform the nation...and to spread scriptural holiness over the land'"
Excerpt from Who Are We? : Doctrine, Ministry, and the Mission of The United Methodist Church, Revised: Leader's Guide by Kenneth L. Carder, (Cokesbury), p. 55.
"The Church is to be judged by the Scriptures, not the Scriptures by the Church."
"The best of it is, God is with us. "