What do you believe?

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by Bible Believing Bill, Sep 29, 2007.

  1. Bible Believing Bill

    Bible Believing Bill
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    I am preparing a study of the Doctrines and Beliefs presented in The General Association of General Baptist's Statement of Faith. As one part of this study I want to compare and contrast our Doctrines vs. those of other Denominations.

    I have posted this same thread / question in the Baptist only areas to get a feeling of what different Baptists groups believe. In his thread I would like to find out what other Christian Denominations believe.

    Note to Mods: I don't believe this is cross posting, as I am looking for answers from different groups.

    I DO NOT WANT THIS TO BECOME A DEBATE about these groups beliefs. I see this thread a source of information about different beliefs.

    Here is a summary of the General Baptist Statement of Faith. Really the only thing missing is the scripture references on which these statements are based. You can find everything at the link above.


    Bill



    I. GOD
    We believe that there is only one true, living, and eternal God and that the Godhead is revealed as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.



    II. THE BIBLE
    We believe that the Holy Scriptures are the Old and New Testaments; the inspired and infallible Word of God and therein is found the reliable guide of Christian faith and conduct.



    III. MAN
    We believe that God created man in His own image to bring Him honor through obedience, and that when man disobeyed, he became a fallen sinful creature, unable to save himself. We believe that infants are in the covenant of God's grace and that all persons become accountable to God when they reach a state of moral responsibility.



    IV. SALVATION
    We believe that Salvation (regeneration, sanctification, justification, and redemption) has been provided for all mankind through the redemptive work (life, death, resurrection, ascension, and intercession) of Jesus Christ, and that this Salvation can be received only through repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.



    V. ASSURANCE AND ENDURANCE
    We believe that those who abide in Christ have the assurance of salvation. However, we believe that the Christian retrains his freedom of choice; therefore, it is possible for him to turn away from God and be finally lost.



    VI. CHRISTIAN DUTIES
    We believe that Christians should live faithfully by serving in and through the local church, praying diligently, witnessing earnestly, practicing tolerance, showing loving kindness, giving as God prospers, and conducting themselves in such a way as to bring glory to God.



    VII. THE CHURCH
    We believe that the Church Universal is the body of Christ, the fellowship of all believers, and that it's members have been called out from the world to come under the dominion and authority of Christ, it's head. We believe that a local church is a fellowship of Christians, a part of the Body of Christ, voluntarily banded together for worship, nurture, and service.



    VIII. THE ORDINANCES
    We believe that baptism and the Lord's Supper are ordinances instituted by Christ to be observed by Christians only. We also believe that the Biblical mode of baptism is immersion and that participation in the Lord's Supper should be open to all Christians.



    IX. THE LORD'S DAY
    We believe in the sanctity of the Lord's Day, the first day of the week, and that this day ought to be observed by worshipping God, witnessing for Christ, and ministering to the needs of humanity. We believe that secular work on Sunday should be limited to cases of necessity or mercy


    X. LAST THINGS
    We believe in the personal return of Jesus Christ, and in the bodily resurrection of the dead. We believe that God will judge all mankind by Jesus Christ; that He will reward the righteous with eternal life in heaven, and that He will banish the unrighteous to everlasting punishment in hell.[/quote]
     
  2. Heavenly Pilgrim

    Heavenly Pilgrim
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    HP: I have a question. How does one retrain their freedom of choice? Can we debate that issue :laugh:

     
  3. Heavenly Pilgrim

    Heavenly Pilgrim
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    HP: I might say it like this. We believe that God created man in His own image to accomplish his purposes. When Adam by disobedience to a known commandment of God sinned, he rightfully incurred the wrath of the law. Scripture is clear. All who come to the age of accountability sin and become guilty before God and as such are in need of a Savior.

    It would seem to me that if one is to develop a statement of faith, they would do well to stick with clear facts and not inject conjecture as this statement of faith you bring to the list does. There is no place in Scripture that ever tells us that if Adam would not have fallen he would have ‘saved himself.’ There simply would have been no reason to be saved.

    No where does Scripture tell us that infants are in the covenant of God’s grace? That has been developed to cover for the Augustinian notion of original sin. Neither does Scripture tell us that they are sinful or holy. They simply are not moral agents and as such are not in need of salvation or cleansing period. It should suffice to say simply that all who come to the age of accountability sin and become guilty before God and as such are in need of a Savior.
     
  4. Heavenly Pilgrim

    Heavenly Pilgrim
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    HP: Salute!:thumbs: Now here is one I indeed believe is written with wisdom. (With the exception of the typo noted) Note it does NOT say that any will, or that there is a high or low likelihood of it happening, but rather wisely states that “the possibility exists.” My hat is off for this wise induction of a ‘possibility.’ :thumbs:

    When we purposefully eliminate the injection of Scriptural possibilities in our theology as so many do, more often that not the result is that we unintentionally inject absurdity.
     
  5. BobRyan

    BobRyan
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    I agree with all of it -- except for the last two points.

    IX --- The Lord's Day according to Mark 2:27-28 "Christ is LORD of the Sabbath" is the Sabbath. Isaiah 58 calls the Sabbath "the Holy Day of the LORD"

    X -- The wicked are consumed in the LAKE of fire - this is the second death.

    Other than those two corrections -- SDAs would say your list is "all good".

    We would add

    XI - "We believe in spiritual gifts as defined in 1Cor 12 and 1Cor 14"

    XII - "We believe in the future judgment of all as described in 2Cor 5:10, Dan 7 and Romans 2"

    XIII - We believe that the 10 commandment Law of God is ESTABLISHed by faith as stated in Romans 3:31.
     
    #5 BobRyan, Sep 29, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 29, 2007
  6. BobRyan

    BobRyan
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    Bill - do you consider yourself to be Arminian or 3-point Calvinist?

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
  7. Heavenly Pilgrim

    Heavenly Pilgrim
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    HP: After looking on the official web site of the General Baptists, I am unconvinced as to whether or not the word ‘retrain’ is a typo or not. Possibly BBB could explain this to us so as not to understand the meaning of this word. Do the really mean ‘retrain’ or do they simply mean ‘retain?’

    Thanks!
     
  8. billwald

    billwald
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    Officially, I "believe" the ecumenical creeds, the Heidelberg Catechism, the Canon of Dort, and the Belgic Confession.
     
  9. ReformedBaptist

    ReformedBaptist
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    I agree with most everything except this. If this is a church's statement of faith they should expand it. The statement on salvation I can take from a pure calvinist theology. Yet this statement is contrary to the doctrine of the perseverance of the saints. I would not join this church as a result.

    I assume "retrains" is a typo and should be restrains? Also, this statement only deals with assurance and not perseverance/endurance, or so it seems to me. It equates assurance with perseverance, seemingly, not allowing Christians to experience times of doubt and or lack of assurance even though they are born again. Such things I believe the Scritures allow.
     
  10. Heavenly Pilgrim

    Heavenly Pilgrim
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    HP: It appears that BBB has left us out on a limb to dry without any explanations. I hope it is just that he has not had time to respond. :)

    BB, how does one know when in times of ”doubt or lack of assurance” that such is not a time when one is coming to the truth in that they were never predestined to salvation in the first place? According to what I have read concerning your views, it is either absolute knowledge of ones salvation or not. Either OSAS or not. Are you telling me that one can believe in OSAS yet that does not eliminate doubt as to ones standing before God at all times? This appears to me to be millisecond Christianity. At one moment I have OSAS and in another moment I have doubt or lack of assurance. I thought OSAS relieved us from all those doubts and lack of assurance, and that if we ever had any lack of assurance or doubt it was just false condemnation? Are you admitting that there is a time when ones doubts and lack of assurance might be pointing to a lack of right relationship with God, or is it all just a ploy of the devil to rob the OSAS believer of their joy?

    Where are those passages of Scripture that states that in times of doubt or lack of assurance that all is actually well with our soul and its final resting place? I believe it was Calvin himself who at one time stated something along this order. God has not so designed our assurance of salvation to allow for one having a full confidence of their final standing before God while in a state of low grace.
     
  11. drfuss

    drfuss
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    This thread seems to be gravitating towards the security of the believer. I did a stuy on the various security of the believer beliefs about six months ago. Here is the results of my study.


    SEVEN BELIEFS IN THE SECURITY OF THE BELIEVER

    I know of at least seven different beliefs in the security of the believer. All believe that God is completely sovereign. All believe that the grace God provides is more than sufficient for salvation. The differences are in man's required response to God's grace.

    The following are very abbreviated descriptions of the beliefs. Obviously more could be said about each one, but are put in this format so many could be included.

    1. 4/5 Point Calvinist. - God unconditionally elects, man has no choice.

    2. Eternal Security (Moderate Calvinist). - Man must accept grace, then will not reject grace.

    3, Remonstrant Belief (Reformed Arminian) - Man must accept grace, but can later choose to forfeit grace by stopping believing.

    4. Wesleyan Arminian Belief - Man must: accept grace, confess and be remorseful for known sins, and not have long term un-forgiveness of others in order not to lose his salvation. Of course, he can repent and be restored..

    5. Sanctification Belief – Wesleyan Arminian Belief plus man must continue on the path to sanctification.

    6. Roman Catholic belief - Accept grace by faith plus have some good works.

    7. Augustine/Lutheran Belief - God unconditionally elects, man can then reject grace.



    Each belief has some uncertainty that can be found by those of the other beliefs. Those of the belief in question probably will not agree with these uncertainties, but it is important to realize how others see your belief. Some of these perceived uncertainties are as follows:

    1. 4/5 Point Calvinists – Others wonder how a Christian is to know now if he is one of the elect, since only the elect endure to the end of which he may not do.

    2. Eternal Security – Since an apparent Christian who does not endure to the end, was not really a true Christian in the first place; others wonder how a person can be sure now that he is a true Christian.

    3. Remonstrant Arminian Belief – Others wonder how a person who is a Christian now, believes he is secure since he could stop trusting in Christ in the future.

    4. Wesleyan Arminian Belief – Others wonder how a Christian knows if his forgiveness and remorse for known sins are sufficient for continued salvation.

    5. Sanctification belief - Others wonder how a Christians knows if he is adequately on the road to sanctification including forgiveness and remorse for known sins.

    6. Roman Catholic belief – Others wonder how and if a Christian knows his works are sufficient for God’s grace to be applied.

    7. Augustine/Luther Belief – Others wonder how a person who believes he is of the elect, thinks his salvation is secure since he could stop trusting Christ in the future and be lost.


    The #1 though #4 beliefs and uncertainties were taken from a book entitled “Four views on Eternal Security” written by four theology professors. Each of the four presented his view and then commented on the other views. I have no documentation for belief #5, but the belief and uncertainties are based on my personal experience with these type churches years ago. Belief #6 and its uncertainties were taken from a TV show where a Catholic priest and a Baptist minister debated the issues of God’s grace and man’s participation. Belief #7 and its uncertainties were taken from Augustine’s writings and the Lutheran website.

    All seven beliefs are based on scripture. Christians of each belief think their interpretation of scripture is correct and any interpretation that contradicts their belief is an innovative or wrong interpretation. Unfortunately, Christians tend to interact only with those of their own belief, and sometimes end up having misconceptions about other beliefs.

    In all seven belief, Christians believe by faith and are sure about their salvation if they are in accordance with their belief.


     
  12. Bible Believing Bill

    Bible Believing Bill
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    Just really busy. I should have some time in the next couple of days. I have only skimmed the replies so far.


    Bill
     

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