What do we believe as a Reformed church? Thankfully, you don't need to interview all the pastors and teachers of Reformed churches to answer that question. We have an accessible and objective way to answer that question. What we together believe and confess is written down in our doctrinal standards, faithful summaries of biblical doctrine which we call creeds and confessions.
The Ancient Ecumenical Creeds
These creeds are succinct statements of the historic Christian faith that were born in the early centuries of the church. They are called "ecumenical" because they have been received and believed by Christian churches in all times and places. In response to heresy and doctrinal confusion, these creeds were a way to "contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints" (Jude 3).
The Three Forms of Unity
The Heidelberg Catechism: was adopted in 1563 at the Synod of Heidelberg, Germany for the purpose of teaching and memorising the main doctrines of Scripture. The Catechism summarises the Christian faith under three parts: how great our sin is; how Christ sets us free from our sin; and how we are to live in grateful service for so great a salvation.
The Belgic Confession: was published in 1561 on behalf of Reformed believers in the region of what is now Holland, Belgium, and northern France. It professes the basic Christian doctrine of the Word of God organised in six parts: God, humanity, Christ, salvation, the church, and the end times.
The Canons of Dort: were adopted at the Synod of Dort in 1618-19 in response to the teachings of Arminius and his followers. The Canons confess the sovereign grace of God by way of five points: unconditional election, definite atonement, total depravity, irresistible grace, and the preservation of the saints.