Disclaimer: About This Blog

THIS BLOG IS: my personal journey of how I am rethinking some of my spiritual beliefs.
THIS BLOG IS NOT: intended to point fingers at people who I think are wrong.
I do not believe the final judgement will be based on how many correct answers we get on a theology exam. I believe many people throughout history have had genuine relationships with our Lord and Saviour Jesus, despite holding questionable beliefs and practices. I make no claim to having it all figured out or being your judge. If we end up disagreeing over these topics I pray we can find a way to demonstrate grace.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

What Must I Believe Part 1

What set of beliefs do all true Christ followers believe?

Christians believe all sorts of different things.  Is there a minimum amount of information a Christ follower needs to accept as truth by faith to be saved? Many Christians over the years have developed catechisms and statements of faith in an attempt to address this question. 

If someone asked you the question "What must I do to be saved?"  How would you respond?  Is there a set of information that you would want to go through to explain the basics of the faith?  Is there a list of verses that you would flip through to point out the most important beliefs?

To explore this question I would like to do a series of posts. There are a number of passages in New Testament that speak about what needs to occur to be saved.

The passage in Acts 16 comes to mind first where a jail guard asks Paul and Silas this key question:

 “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” 

They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.” 

From this text, what set of information must be believed to be saved?  

Does it say we need to believe that God is Holy? That we are sinners?  That God cannot be in the presence of sin so Jesus paid our debt on the cross so we can be with Him?

What about information about the Trinity? What about the resurrection? What about God's love? What about the role of the Holy Spirit? We could go on and on and create a lengthy catechism.

This passage does go on to say "they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house."  We can only guess as to what that sounded like.   I can imagine it including some of  what I just mentioned above.  But we don't know how much.

We must also note the passage doesn't say "Believe the following about the Lord Jesus and you will be saved".  There is a difference between trusting someone, and believing information about someone. Getting the information about Jesus correct does matter for many different reasons.  I would not encourage anyone to embrace doctrines they know are false.  But how much of the information needs to be understood correctly for salvation?  That is the question I would like to explore further.

Here are other posts in this series:

What Must I Believe Part 1 - explanation and look at Acts 16:30 - 31
What Must I Believe Part 2 - where Jesus tells a woman she is saved
What Must I believe Part 3 - a look at John 3:16
What Beliefs Part 4 - Whom Do I Trust?
What Must I believe - Part 5 - more verses to consider
What Creed Must I believe - Part 6 - how creeds can divide

I'd love to hear your thoughts.

1 comment:

Steve Martin said...

We don't need to know much, other than Christ Jesus is our Savior.

Good doctrine is important, but it doesn't save us.

"We are faithless, but He is faithful."

Our faith is weak. So how then can we have any assurance?

How do we know that we really do believe?

That's where Baptism and Holy Communion come in. That we might have rock solid assurance in the midst of our weal faith and often wavering faith.