What are the foundational doctrines of the Christian faith?

Self-ImprovementSpirituality

  • Author James Rondinone
  • Published May 18, 2022
  • Word count 3,320

PART 4 THE CHURCH OF GOD OR CHURCH OF MAN

3

WHAT ARE THE FOUNDATIONAL DOCTRINES OF THE CHRISTIAN FAITH?

Foundational Doctrines are doctrines upon which our faith stands. Another way of saying this is that they secure us in our faith. They might also be called absolute truths, i.e., they’re unalterable and permanent facts.

Some of them will evidence which member of the Trinity originated the divine plan for humankind, who executed the plan, and who revealed the plan. Others will proclaim that what has been accomplished by the divine plan can never be improved upon or changed by us. And furthermore, they’ll emphasize to us that whatever we’ve received through repentance and faith can never be maintained by performing good works or lost by sinful behavior.

I can’t stress enough how important these doctrines are concerning our spiritual welfare. Belief in an altered version of any one of these can mean the difference between receiving the indwelling Holy Spirit or a different spirit. The result of which would be that we might genuinely seek after God but never get to know Him in a personal way. And unfortunately, the desire to go to a better place at death will only be a hope rather than a verified reality.

Are you ready to learn about these vital doctrines of our faith? Well, here they are. And by the way, they won’t just be mentioned by name but will be substantiated as being valid by providing scriptural support. There’s one more thing I’d like to mention before we begin reading about these truths. There are other doctrines of the Christian faith which I’ll call Intellectual, such as the Rapture; Prayer; Rebound; Old Sin Nature; Sanctification; the Devil, etc. that we won’t cover in this study, but hopefully, they’ll be disseminated to you in the church you are attending or will attend.

THE FOUNDATIONAL, ABSOLUTE, STABILIZING DOCTRINES OF THE CHRISTIAN FAITH

THE TRINITY   

The concept of a Trinity isn’t an easy one to grasp, as the following definition will attest. And by the way, this word Trinity isn’t even found in the Bible.

One God exists as three persons – coequal [having the same divine attributes as another], coinfinite [unmeasurable with another in space and time], and coeternal [eternally existing with another] – all three possessing the essential nature.8 Each member possesses the same divine essence of sovereignty, righteousness, justice, love, eternal life, omniscience, omnipresence, omnipotence, immutability, and truth. However, they don’t have the same roles. God the Father is the originator of the plan, God the Son is the executor of the plan, and God the Holy Spirit is the revealer of the plan. And just to clarify, we’re not talking about three distinct Gods, but one God as a triune being.   

1 Corinthians 8:6 But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him.

Hebrews 1:8 But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom.

John 4:24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

THE DEITY OF CHRIST                 

Christ is one of the members of the Trinity, the other two being God the Father and God the Holy Spirit. While each of them has identical essence of personality, their roles are different as the plan of God for man unfolds.9

Philippians 2:6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:

John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

Hebrews 1:8 But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom.

 

THE DEITY OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

The Holy Spirit is another member of the Trinity. Scripture describes Him as a person that possesses the same divine attributes as each of them.

John 15:26 But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:

Acts 5:1-4 But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession, And kept back part of the price, his wife also being privy to it, and brought a certain part, and laid it at the apostles' feet. But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land? Whiles it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God.

 

THE DEITY OF GOD THE FATHER

Likewise, God the Father is the final member of the Trinity that contains the same divine attributes.

John 4:34 Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.

John 5:16-18 And therefore did the Jews persecute Jesus, and sought to slay him, because he had done these things on the sabbath day. But Jesus answered them, My Father worketh hitherto, and I work. Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God.

 

THE GOSPEL OF CHRIST

The gospel is the good news that each of us should be ready to present to unbelievers, which declares that God sent His Son Jesus, God incarnate, deity, being born of a virgin, having never committed one sin, died on a cross, paid the penalty for the debt owed due to sin in order to satisfy the justice of God, forgave these sins wiping away the record of such, rose again after three days never to die again, His sacrifice accepted, ascended into heaven to be seated at the right hand of the Father, and that whosoever repents (a confession of sins; a hearty purpose to turn from them10) of their sins and believes in this Jesus will be justified (be put right with God; be declared righteous) and receive the indwelling Spirit along with many other spiritual benefits.

Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

Acts 17:30 And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:

John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

SALVATION

Salvation refers to the receiving of the indwelling Holy Spirit along with a bundle of other spiritual benefits when an unbeliever responds to the gospel.

2 Thessalonians 2:13 But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:

John 3:5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

Acts 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

Ephesians 1:13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,

John 7:37-39 In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)

THE ATONEMENT

Jesus is the atonement, the atoning sacrifice, for the sins of the whole world that removed the penalty, the punishment (the suffering) upon the entire human race to satisfy the justice of God the Father. The Father made Christ be sin for us, a sin offering, meaning that He bore the punishment due to them in our stead.

1 John 2:2 And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.

2 Corinthians 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

REDEMPTION

This word means deliverance, liberation from, or to let one go free. Deliverance from what? Deliverance from the judgment of our sins.

Ephesians 1:7 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;

THE BLOOD

The blood is the payment (the price paid) to divine justice that provided redemption. The blood can also be referred to as the ransom required, i.e., of Christ’s death on the cross, the giving of His life.

Ephesians 1:7 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;

FORGIVENESS OF SINS

The forgiveness of sins means to blot them out, to not remember them any longer, to throw a person’s sins behind one’s back, and to carry them away so that they’ll never be seen again. Along with the debt owed to God the Father being paid in full by the death of His Son, the forgiveness of sins was also provided.

Colossians 2:13 And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses;

THE RESURRECTION OF CHRIST

Mankind needed someone to pay the debt which they incurred from Adam’s willful sin in the Garden of Eden. So, God the Father sent his Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, who, being sustained by the Holy Spirit, listened to and obeyed the Father’s directives. Jesus lived a sinless life and was crucified on a cross, being the atonement for sins. His human spirit went to hell, where he preached to spirits (fallen angels) who were residing there 1 Peter 3:19. After three days, His human spirit re-entered His physical body, and He was raised again (bodily resurrection) by means of the quickening of the Holy Spirit for our justification (in order to reconcile us to God). The resurrection was God the Father’s validation that the redemption paid by Christ on the cross was accepted11 by Him.

After three complete days had passed, He was raised from the dead, and there was evidenced a new body, a spiritual one, whereby over a period of forty days, He witnessed of His resurrection to over five hundred people; and after which He ascended into heaven to be seated at the right hand of the Father. Christ’s resurrection was proof that the atonement and forgiveness for sin accomplished its purpose, i.e., to satisfy the debt owed to the justice of God. It also proved that Christ is who He said He was, i.e., the Messiah/Savior/One of the members of the Trinity, true humanity, and undiminished deity. By ascending into heaven following His forty days on earth, He paved the way for all who believed in God as He was revealed from dispensation to dispensation to enter heaven. Hallelujah!

1 Peter 3:18-19 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison;

Acts 2:31-32 He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption. This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses.              

1 Corinthians 15:42, 44 So also is the resurrection of the dead. … It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.

1 Corinthians 15:4, 6 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep.

THERE’S ONLY ONE WAY TO GET TO HEAVEN

We’re told by Scripture that there’s only one way to get to heaven. And that there’s only one person to believe in whom God the Father has accepted as to His nature, His life, and atonement for sin.

Acts 4:12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.                                                                                                                     

John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

ETERNAL SECURITY

Some might call this the doctrine of eternal salvation. As we’ve already learned, salvation refers to the receiving of the indwelling Holy Spirit along with a bundle of other spiritual benefits when an unbeliever responds to the gospel. Receiving the Spirit doesn’t require human effort or some type of good works in order to obtain it, and neither can we lose it based on how we choose to work out this salvation.

John 10:27-28 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.

Romans 8:38-39 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

These truths are another indicator as to what to look for when trying to make the critical decision as to whether the kinds of teachings presented from those in authority will ground you in the Christian faith and provide the opportunities for unbelievers to find the one true God for themselves. If the messages reaffirm the gospel of Christ, promote spiritual growth, and reaffirm the foundational doctrines of the faith, then the ultimate goals for each and every believer will have the liberty to be realized as declared by the following verses.

Ephesians 4:11-12 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:

Before we turn to the next chapter, I’d like to leave you with an article that has resonated with me, and I hope that it will do the same for you. One of the things that I’ve noticed, whether on TV or the internet, is a saturation of reports about certain individuals either doing bad things to other people or not telling the truth or engaging in sexual relationships that used to be termed [“immoral.”] All of these actions have been relegated to whatever someone believes to be right for themselves. I’ve been wondering lately what has ever happened to [“right and wrong?”]

Whether this pertains to crimes, morals, or just telling the truth, it seems like the abnormal has become normal. People do what they want to do with little or no checks and balances and seemingly no concern for the consequences or how their friends, families, or others are affected. What you’ll read about next is that what has just been said relates to what this chapter is all about, and [that’s] absolute truth. I hope that it resonates with you as it has with me.

WHATEVER HAPPENED TO RIGHT AND WRONG?

We live in a culture that increasingly doesn’t believe there’s a difference between right and wrong. In a recent Barna research study conducted at a university campus, [twenty] random students were asked, “Do you believe [there’s] an absolute truth [that’s] true of all people of all time?”

The responses went something like this:

“Truth is whatever you believe.”

“[There’s] no absolute truth.”

“If there were such a thing as ‘absolute truth,’ how could we know what it is?”

This study reflects the beliefs of most Americans today. Other studies have shown that [ninety-one] percent of teenagers don’t believe in absolute [truth,] and [sixty-six] percent of adults don’t either. Instead, most people believe in an existential concept of truth. Right and wrong [have] become subjective – reduced to someone’s opinion or personal perception.

In the sixties and the seventies, we began to hear phrases like, “Just do your thing.” [And]” If it feels good, do it.” Later, we heard phrases like, “Truth is different for me than [it’s] for you” [And,] then, finally, the one we now hear all the time is, “Who am I – or you – to judge?” But it hasn’t always been this way. For most of history, humankind has believed there’s a truth [that’s] absolutely true at all times and in all [places,] whether we experience it or not.

That’s because [we’ve] always lived on the basis of absolutes in most areas of our lives without even realizing it. For example, a person can say [that they don’t believe in gravity,] but if he or she steps off a three-story building, their belief system will change very quickly! [So,] what does God say about right and wrong?

Galatians 6:7-8 says, Don’t be deceived, God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that sinful nature will reap destruction and the one who sows to please his spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. [HCSB – Holman Christian Standard Bible]

God is clear: [there’s] absolute truth, and when we violate it, there’s a price to pay. When we see soaring divorce rates, breakups, communicable diseases, people in unmanageable debt, and people with [addictions,] they can’t shake because they’re trying to fill the holes that the world doesn’t fill, this is all evidence of truth violated. Jesus was the most tolerant and kindest person who ever lived. But He also made outrageous, absolute claims. He said this about Himself: 

[I am the Way and the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except by Me.] (John 14:6)

[That’s] a very intolerant, non-existential statement, isn’t it? But it comes from a God who loves and cares deeply about you, about your kids, about your friends, and about your neighbors. It comes from a God who is pursuing people and who longs for [relationships and connections] that’s real and absolute.12

                                                    

Website: http://bit.ly/1RQnYJ8          

Endnotes

8R.B. Thieme Jr., The Trinity (Houston, Texas: Berachah Tapes and Publications, 1993).

9R.B. Thieme Jr.

10Barnes.

11Bible Knowledge Commentary/New Testament, 2000. BIBLESOFT. WEB. 14 January 2022 ˂http://www.biblesoft.com>.

12Chip Ingram. “WHATEVER HAPPENED TO RIGHT AND WRONG?” LIVING ON THE EDGE. 3 February 2022

.

I grew up in Massachusetts and began my own spiritual journey early on in life.

I attended Bible college, having completed a two-year Christian Leadership course of study, and graduated as valedictorian (summa cum laude).

I’ve written and published a number of spiritual books on various biblical topics.

Article source: https://articlebiz.com
This article has been viewed 135 times.

Rate article

Article comments

There are no posted comments.