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Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Deacon, Sep 22, 2013.
Do you need to know of the trinity in order to be saved?
No. There are many finer points of theology that we do not need to know a priori. I am more concerned by the professed believer who denies the Trinity as they mature in their faith. I believe the triune nature of God is a truth revealed by the Holy Spirit through the Word of God. I would also be concerned by someone who is an outspoken denier of the Trinity before coming to faith. Such a serious error must be recanted of as part of the repentance that leads to faith.
Come on....dont you think there is not a major denial of the trinity by those who hold to Universal Atonement?
Some Primitive Baptists (no-hellers) are staunch Trinitarians but believe all men eventualy will be saved.
I'm wondering if you include them? Just curious.
Personally I consider them brethren, wrong brethren, but brethren nonetheless.
This is a good question. Historic Baptists would deny that knowing some particular piece of information or having a specific set of knowledge allows regeneration to suddenly click into place. However, they would admit that a regenerate person begins with a set of knowledge, but grows in the truth.
Given that the doctrine of the nature of our God's triunity is one that the most learned and pious of the saints fail yet to fully grasp. (For to fully understand an attribute of God, requires the intellect of God Himself.) Therefore, I would admit that there is, indeed, a minimum amount of knowledge of the divine that a newly regenerate person accepts. We just might not be able to quantify it.
Here is how the old Baptist divines put it:
"By this faith a Christian believeth to be true whatsoever is revealed in the Word for the authority of God himself, and also apprehendeth an excellency therein above all other writings and all things in the world, as it bears forth the glory of God in his attributes, the excellency of Christ in his nature and offices, and the power and fullness of the Holy Spirit in his workings and operations: and so is enabled to cast his soul upon the truth thus believed; and also acteth differently upon that which each particular passage thereof containeth; yielding obedience to the commands, trembling at the threatenings, and embracing the promises of God for this life and that which is to come; but the principal acts of saving faith have immediate relation to Christ, accepting, receiving, and resting upon him alone for justification, sanctification, and eternal life, by virtue of the covenant of grace." (Acts 24:14; Psalms 27:7-10; 119:72; 2 Timothy 1:12; John 14:14; Isaiah 66:2; Hebrews 11:13; John 1:12; Acts 16:31; Galatians 2:20; Acts 15:11)" --1689 London Baptist Confession of Faith (chapter 14, paragraph 2)
It'd be interesting to pose that question to a second generation believer in the first century, or one up until about the end of the second century, since the word Trinity doesn't appear in early Christian literature until Tertullian.
This is not to say that the concept of the Trinity wasn't around, it was, but it was still being fleshed out.
A second question is: how much knowledge of the Trinity would one need to have if you believe "yes" is the correct answer to the above question? I would be interested in seeing how many around here, without consulting Wikipedia or other sources, could line out the comprehensive definition of the Trinity that takes account of the economic and immanent Trinity as well as the nature of subordination and uncreatedness.
Good point! As to the second question, you would probably have to count me out. I always have to have my Bible and books handy. I can quote the Nicene creed, though. In orthodoxy, that might count.
By the way... off to church!
You all have a blessed Lord's Day!
If you can quote the Nicene Creed you're already ahead of 97% of Baptists I know...including ministers. :thumbs:
Really!?! Thats an interesting tidbit.:laugh:
Are they Universalists?
The article I posted calls them " Primitive Baptist Universalists".
If you deny the trinity, you deny Christ.
If you have a different definition of the trinity you worship another Christ (Oneness Pentecostal).
If you refuse to understand the trinity or use it as an excuse to believe (like the J.W.'s) you cannot be saved.
Not believing in the trinity is, in essence, not believing in the nature of Christ.
You did not answer the question directly. Do you need to know the Trinity in order to be saved? The ramification of denying the Trinity once you are made aware of it is one thing, but does being ignorant of it before you are saved preclude you from being saved?
I am not sure I follow you. If "Bob" is ignorant of Christian theology (including the Trinity), but hears the Gospel and becomes a Christian, is it necessary for Bob to have an understanding of the Trinity in order to be saved? I believe the answer to that is "no".
Fast forward a number of years. Bob, who once professed faith in Christ, becomes an anti-trinitarian zealot. Two things may have happened. 1. Bob has fallen into serious error that calls into question his salvation. 2. Bob was never saved to begin with and his denial one of the most cardinal doctrines of the Christian faith is proof of this.
A couple of weeks ago I was talking with a guy about some major life decisions. He had zero church experience but had married a woman who began attending church after some marital troubles. He loves his wife and wanted to work on things. So we started talking.
Now he's a nice guy and works in a blue collar industry. In our talks we never got into theology. I just started reading through the Gospel of John with him. And talking about Jesus. We never said anything about the Trinity or penal substitutionary atonement or soteriology or major issues of Christology.
So, a couple weeks ago he asked me if he could become a Jesus follower. I told him yes and how to become a Christian. We never said the word "Trinity" we never talked about "inerrancy" we never spoke at length about "Jesus incarnational mission."
But he got saved. By asking Jesus to be Lord of his life. By confessing his sins. By pledging himself to Jesus.
Today, he got baptized.
He still doesn't know about "inerrancy" or "incarnational theology" etc. But he is coming to services every week, he is starting to learn, and he is passionate about living for Jesus.
He didn't need to know about the Trinity to get saved.
He'll learn about to be properly instructed, but it wasn't necessary for salvation.
And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. Matt. 16:16,17
Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: 1 John 4:2
Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; Heb 2:14
For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: Romans 8:3
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. John 1:1
God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;
But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.
Just what does the word of God say concerning the nature of the Christ?
OK, so in between his being Regenerated (IE The HS Interacts w/him & provides him Saving Grace) & his becoming an Anti Trinitarian, how does Bob learn about & begin believing in the TRINITY?
Through good doctrinal teaching. This begins in the local church and may be mitigated by personal study. Discipleship (a function of the local church) is also instrumental in teaching sound doctrine (Mat. 28:19; 2 Ti. 4:1-2).