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New Statement of Faith

StoveBolts

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Below is our current SOF.
Please let me know where you think we should modify it. I would like to remove a few things and add a few things.
One thing I would like to add is something like this.

We understand the Body of Christ (The Church) to be universal in nature and not specific to one denomination.

JohnDB, WIP, Truthfrees, wondering, JLB, OzSpen --> Please make your position known.

ChristianForums.net Mission Statement:
ChristianForums.net aspires to provide a place where Christians can come together in fellowship for encouragement, inspiration, and strength to help build each other up and grow in our walk of faith through honest and open discussion, study, reflection, and prayer.

ChristianForums.net desires to serve non-Christians, seeking answers to questions about Christianity, by sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ so they too may acquire the hope, joy, and peace that come from fellowship with the saving grace of our Lord, Jesus Christ.

Doctrinal Statement
We believe that the Bible is inspired by God in its entirety, and is without error in the original autographs, a complete and final written revelation from God.

We believe that there is only one God, who is eternal and immutable, and manifests Himself in three distinct Persons; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

We believe that Jesus of Nazareth is the promised Messiah, born of a virgin, totally without sin, God in human flesh, the One Who died on the cross for our sins, was buried, rose again from the dead on the third day, and ascended to the right hand of the Father in heaven, where He now intercedes for us who believe in Him.

We believe that all humanity is lost and born with a sinful nature, and can only be saved by a personal faith in the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, and not by any human merit or performance.

We believe in a personal devil, called Satan, who, along with all his angels, called demons or evil spirits, are destined to spend eternity in hell, and now seek to deceive the world, defeat the believers, and destroy the work of God, but can be resisted by believers, who are protected by God and the intercession of Jesus Christ our Lord.

We believe that heaven is a real place where the saved will dwell forever, and that hell is a literal place of torment where unbelievers will be punished.

We believe that genuine believers are born again by the Holy Spirit of God, and are indwelt, baptized into the body of Christ, the true church, and sealed by the Holy Spirit.

We believe that all believers need to be filled and empowered by the Holy Spirit to live a godly life and to be bold in our witness for the Lord.

We believe in the spiritual unity of all genuine believers in the Lord Jesus Christ.
 

ezra

 
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Below is our current SOF.
Please let me know where you think we should modify it. I would like to remove a few things and add a few things.
One thing I would like to add is something like this.

We understand the Body of Christ (The Church) to be universal in nature and not specific to one denomination.

JohnDB, WIP, Truthfrees, wondering, JLB, OzSpen --> Please make your position known.

ChristianForums.net Mission Statement:
ChristianForums.net aspires to provide a place where Christians can come together in fellowship for encouragement, inspiration, and strength to help build each other up and grow in our walk of faith through honest and open discussion, study, reflection, and prayer.

ChristianForums.net desires to serve non-Christians, seeking answers to questions about Christianity, by sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ so they too may acquire the hope, joy, and peace that come from fellowship with the saving grace of our Lord, Jesus Christ.

Doctrinal Statement
We believe that the Bible is inspired by God in its entirety, and is without error in the original autographs, a complete and final written revelation from God.

We believe that there is only one God, who is eternal and immutable, and manifests Himself in three distinct Persons; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

We believe that Jesus of Nazareth is the promised Messiah, born of a virgin, totally without sin, God in human flesh, the One Who died on the cross for our sins, was buried, rose again from the dead on the third day, and ascended to the right hand of the Father in heaven, where He now intercedes for us who believe in Him.

We believe that all humanity is lost and born with a sinful nature, and can only be saved by a personal faith in the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, and not by any human merit or performance.

We believe in a personal devil, called Satan, who, along with all his angels, called demons or evil spirits, are destined to spend eternity in hell, and now seek to deceive the world, defeat the believers, and destroy the work of God, but can be resisted by believers, who are protected by God and the intercession of Jesus Christ our Lord.

We believe that heaven is a real place where the saved will dwell forever, and that hell is a literal place of torment where unbelievers will be punished.

We believe that genuine believers are born again by the Holy Spirit of God, and are indwelt, baptized into the body of Christ, the true church, and sealed by the Holy Spirit.

We believe that all believers need to be filled and empowered by the Holy Spirit to live a godly life and to be bold in our witness for the Lord.

We believe in the spiritual unity of all genuine believers in the Lord Jesus Christ.
nothing needs to be added i like this sof
 

JLB

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We believe that there is only one God, who is eternal and immutable, and manifests Himself in three distinct Persons; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
I will start with this paragraph to discuss.

This doctrine has been discussed and debated almost as much as OSAS.

I hear what you guys are saying, however this reads like we believe there is One God, and He can either manifest as the Father or the Son or the Holy Spirit.

IOW, it says we believe this One is three, rather than what the scripture says which is these three are One.


For there are three that bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one. 1 John 5:7


  • these three are one.


Oneness says, this One is three.



JLB
 

OzSpen

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Below is our current SOF.
Please let me know where you think we should modify it. I would like to remove a few things and add a few things.
One thing I would like to add is something like this.

We understand the Body of Christ (The Church) to be universal in nature and not specific to one denomination.

JohnDB, WIP, Truthfrees, wondering, JLB, OzSpen --> Please make your position known.

ChristianForums.net Mission Statement:
ChristianForums.net aspires to provide a place where Christians can come together in fellowship for encouragement, inspiration, and strength to help build each other up and grow in our walk of faith through honest and open discussion, study, reflection, and prayer.

ChristianForums.net desires to serve non-Christians, seeking answers to questions about Christianity, by sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ so they too may acquire the hope, joy, and peace that come from fellowship with the saving grace of our Lord, Jesus Christ.

Doctrinal Statement
We believe that the Bible is inspired by God in its entirety, and is without error in the original autographs, a complete and final written revelation from God.

We believe that there is only one God, who is eternal and immutable, and manifests Himself in three distinct Persons; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

We believe that Jesus of Nazareth is the promised Messiah, born of a virgin, totally without sin, God in human flesh, the One Who died on the cross for our sins, was buried, rose again from the dead on the third day, and ascended to the right hand of the Father in heaven, where He now intercedes for us who believe in Him.

We believe that all humanity is lost and born with a sinful nature, and can only be saved by a personal faith in the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, and not by any human merit or performance.

We believe in a personal devil, called Satan, who, along with all his angels, called demons or evil spirits, are destined to spend eternity in hell, and now seek to deceive the world, defeat the believers, and destroy the work of God, but can be resisted by believers, who are protected by God and the intercession of Jesus Christ our Lord.

We believe that heaven is a real place where the saved will dwell forever, and that hell is a literal place of torment where unbelievers will be punished.

We believe that genuine believers are born again by the Holy Spirit of God, and are indwelt, baptized into the body of Christ, the true church, and sealed by the Holy Spirit.

We believe that all believers need to be filled and empowered by the Holy Spirit to live a godly life and to be bold in our witness for the Lord.

We believe in the spiritual unity of all genuine believers in the Lord Jesus Christ.
SB,

I like your statement about the body of Christ. I would add some explanation like the body of Christ consists of all believers who have accepted Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior. Therefore, when amalgamated with your statement, it would read:
  • The Body of Christ (The Church) is universal in nature and not specific to one denomination. It consists of all believers who have accepted Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior
I would never use the term 'manifests' in any statement on the Trinity. As it stands, your statement conforms with the heretical view of the Modalists in the 2nd and 3rd centuries. Here's why:

In the 2nd and 3rd centuries there was a condemned heresy known as Modalistic Monarchianism which claimed that Jesus was God, but only as one of God’s ‘manifestations’. Thus, Father, Son and Holy Spirit were different names (manifestations) for the same person.

Growing out of Modalism was another heresy, led by presbyter Sabellius in the third century – Sabellianism. It supported the oneness of God but opposed the Trinity. He claimed there were no distinctions between the persons of the Godhead. Instead, God manifests Himself at different times, for different people and purposes, as three different ‘modes’ or ‘aspects’.

Therefore, please run a country mile from using ‘modes’ in an orthodox Trinitarian statement.

This is the orthodox view:

“The Trinity means that there is one God who eternally exists as three distinct Persons — the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Stated differently, God is one in essence and three in person. These definitions express three crucial truths: (1) the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are distinct Persons, (2) each Person is fully God, (3) there is only one God.(Matt Perman 2006).​

This sentence in the SoF is not clear to me:

We believe that all humanity is lost and born with a sinful nature, and can only be saved by a personal faith in the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, and not by any human merit or performance.​

I would rewrite:

We support the biblical teaching that all people are lost in sin and are born with a sinful nature. They can be saved by repentance, forgiveness and faith in Jesus Christ's death (blood sacrifice) and resurrection. No human merit or performance earns salvation​
I found many of your sentences too long, especially this one:

We believe in a personal devil, called Satan, who, along with all his angels, called demons or evil spirits, are destined to spend eternity in hell, and now seek to deceive the world, defeat the believers, and destroy the work of God, but can be resisted by believers, who are protected by God and the intercession of Jesus Christ our Lord.​

I would rewrite this as:

We believe in a personal devil, Satan, who, along with all his angels, called demons or evil spirits, are destined to spend eternity in hell. They seek to deceive people, defeat believers, and destroy the work of God. They can be resisted by believers, who are protected by God and the intercession of Jesus Christ our Lord.​

The SoF uses the phrase, 'hell is a literal place of torment'. I would add one word that is confirmed by Scripture (Matt 25:46; Lk 16:24, 27-28; Rev 14:9-11; 20:10-15), 'hell is a literal place of conscious torment'.

Blessings in Christ,
Oz
 
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StoveBolts

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My church of Christs roots are showing :) Baptism needs to be represented.

Here is my re-work.
The Body of Christ (The Church) is universal in nature and not specific to one denomination. It consists of all believers who have confessed Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior and have been immersed in the baptismal waters.

When we look in the NT, baptism was normative. I understand this statement comes with a lot of baggage and has been debated ad nasium and I do not wish to carry that baggage into our SOF. Simply put, Jesus started his ministry at the baptismal waters and he instructed us to baptize and make disciples. This needs to be represented in some form or fashion IMO.

Spencer, you wrote:
We support the biblical teaching that all people are lost in sin and are born with a sinful nature. They can be saved by repentance, forgiveness and faith in Jesus Christ's death (blood sacrifice) and resurrection. No human merit or performance earns salvation.

I do not believe that infants or the severe mentally ill are accounted for in your above statement. David believed his illegitimate child would be in heaven and to throw doubt into a grieving parents mind about their child's eternal destination is not only cruel, but from my studies, not biblical. I'm not as good a writer as you, how do you think we can account for these?

Also, maybe we could start a new thread in the Bible study forum between us and help me to understand the sinful nature. I have read we inherited the sinful nature after the fall, and that may be true. But both Adam and Eve sinned prior to the fall... Eve was deceived and Adam sinned willfully which means they both had the capacity to sin from creation, yet God still called them Good. My studies have caused me to think that we are born 'good', even though we have a sin nature. It's a paradox, I know, but so it the cross.

Lastly, you wrote:
We believe in a personal devil, Satan, who, along with all his angels, called demons or evil spirits, are destined to spend eternity in hell. They seek to deceive people, defeat believers, and destroy the work of God. They can be resisted by believers, who are protected by God and the intercession of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Not to downplay Satan, but I think this statement gives Satan too much credit. I understand from the book of Job that Satan only has the authority which God grants him in a believers life. In the case of Job, God uses Satan to shift the thinking of Job from one of fear to that of relationship. This statement also gives the excuse "The devil made me do it". While this may be true on occasion, we are still liable for our own lusts and deceitfulness and we must be accountable for our own sinful nature.

Honestly, I'm not even sure how to re-write that. What are your thoughts?
 
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WIP

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The Body of Christ (The Church) is universal in nature and not specific to one denomination. It consists of all believers who have confessed Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior and have been immersed in the baptismal waters.
What do you mean by "immersed" on the baptismal waters?
 

StoveBolts

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What do you mean by "immersed" on the baptismal waters?
I mean it is normative in scripture that those who confessed Christ as Lord were also baptized into Christ through the baptismal waters.
 

StoveBolts

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This is what I have for a revised current SOF
****************************************************

Doctrinal Statement
We believe that the Bible is inspired by God in its entirety, and is without error in the original autographs, a complete and final written revelation from God.

The Body of Christ (The Church) is universal in nature and not specific to one denomination. It consists of all believers who have accepted Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior and have been immersed in the baptismal waters.

The Trinity means that there is one God who eternally exists as three distinct Persons — the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Stated differently, God is one in essence and three in person. These definitions express three crucial truths: (1) the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are distinct Persons, (2) each Person is fully God, (3) there is only one God.(Matt Perman 2006).

We believe that Jesus of Nazareth is the promised Messiah, born of a virgin, totally without sin, God in human flesh, the One Who died on the cross for our sins, was buried, rose again from the dead on the third day, and ascended to the right hand of the Father in heaven, where He now intercedes for us who believe in Him.

We support the biblical teaching that all people are lost in sin and are born with a sinful nature. They can be saved by repentance, forgiveness and faith in Jesus Christ's death (blood sacrifice) and resurrection. No human merit or performance earns salvation

We believe in a personal devil, Satan, who, along with all his angels, called demons or evil spirits, are destined to spend eternity in hell. They seek to deceive people, defeat believers, and destroy the work of God. They can be resisted by believers, who are protected by God and the intercession of Jesus Christ our Lord.

We believe that heaven is a real place where the saved will dwell forever, and that hell is a literal place of conscious torment where unbelievers will dwell.

We believe that genuine believers are born again by the Holy Spirit of God, and are indwelt, baptized into the Body of Christ, the true Church, and sealed by the Holy Spirit.

We believe that all believers need to be filled and empowered by the Holy Spirit to live a godly life and to be bold in our witness for the Lord.

We believe in the spiritual unity of all genuine believers in the Lord Jesus Christ.
 

ezra

 
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there is nothing wrong with it. yes you could nit pick it to death .it has the basics see this is what is wrong with the local assembly o but wait you left out spirit baptism speaking in tongues or how much water does it take etc.. it looks reads just fine the way it is.
 

JLB

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there is nothing wrong with it. yes you could nit pick it to death .it has the basics see this is what is wrong with the local assembly o but wait you left out spirit baptism speaking in tongues or how much water does it take etc.. it looks reads just fine the way it is.
We will get to the Baptism’s.


JLB
 

ezra

 
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We will get to the Baptism’s.


JLB
gessh were not opening a church up baptism is baptism .but if who ever insist so be it .waste of time
 

OzSpen

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This is what I have for a revised current SOF
****************************************************

Doctrinal Statement
We believe that the Bible is inspired by God in its entirety, and is without error in the original autographs, a complete and final written revelation from God.

The Body of Christ (The Church) is universal in nature and not specific to one denomination. It consists of all believers who have accepted Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior and have been immersed in the baptismal waters.

The Trinity means that there is one God who eternally exists as three distinct Persons — the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Stated differently, God is one in essence and three in person. These definitions express three crucial truths: (1) the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are distinct Persons, (2) each Person is fully God, (3) there is only one God.(Matt Perman 2006).

We believe that Jesus of Nazareth is the promised Messiah, born of a virgin, totally without sin, God in human flesh, the One Who died on the cross for our sins, was buried, rose again from the dead on the third day, and ascended to the right hand of the Father in heaven, where He now intercedes for us who believe in Him.

We support the biblical teaching that all people are lost in sin and are born with a sinful nature. They can be saved by repentance, forgiveness and faith in Jesus Christ's death (blood sacrifice) and resurrection. No human merit or performance earns salvation

We believe in a personal devil, Satan, who, along with all his angels, called demons or evil spirits, are destined to spend eternity in hell. They seek to deceive people, defeat believers, and destroy the work of God. They can be resisted by believers, who are protected by God and the intercession of Jesus Christ our Lord.

We believe that heaven is a real place where the saved will dwell forever, and that hell is a literal place of conscious torment where unbelievers will dwell.

We believe that genuine believers are born again by the Holy Spirit of God, and are indwelt, baptized into the Body of Christ, the true Church, and sealed by the Holy Spirit.

We believe that all believers need to be filled and empowered by the Holy Spirit to live a godly life and to be bold in our witness for the Lord.

We believe in the spiritual unity of all genuine believers in the Lord Jesus Christ.
SB,

Regarding baptism, I consider there are 2 elements for a SoF:
(a) What Scripture says;
(b) An accommodation to some contemporary practice.

My suggestions are:

(a) We believe baptism is for believers as part of discipleship (Matt 28:18-20).
(b) No person will be excluded from CFnet who believes in infant baptism.

As for the sinful nature, I consider that Wayne Grudem's use of 'inherited sin' rather than 'original sin' has merit. Therefore, I suggest this to be included in the SoF:

All human beings were represented by Adam when he was tested in the Garden of Eden. Since he was people's representative, Adam sinned and God counted all people guilty (including Adam) before God. From the beginning of our existence as persons we have inherited sin, but it is still our sin because we commit sin (see Rom 5:12-21; adapted from Grudem 1994:494-495).​
Blessings,
Oz

Works consulted

Grudem, W 1994. Systematic Theology. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan Publishing House.
 

OzSpen

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I mean it is normative in scripture that those who confessed Christ as Lord were also baptized into Christ through the baptismal waters.
SB,

I don't think I'd use 'baptized into Christ' in the SoF because of these difficulties:
  1. In the NT, the prepositions, 'in' and 'into' (Gk ek and eis) are difficult to explain.
  2. When the NT says we are 'baptized into Christ', what do the words 'into Christ' mean?
  3. Throughout Paul's epistles, we have language such a 'in Christ', 'into Christ', 'in whom', 'in him' and 'in Christ Jesus' turning up many times over.
  4. They express the teaching that Christians are baptized into Christ or are in union with Christ, but it is so difficult to define what that means.
  5. While I acknowledge that this theological truth is a key to Christian growth, there has been so much discussion in biblical sources about its exact meaning and ...
  6. When and how it happens.
  7. These prepositions, "in" and "into", are important as they are used over 200 times in the NT and and 164 times by Paul alone.
  8. However, I would not endorse associating 'baptized into Christ' as meaning this happens through baptism in water.
  9. I'm not convinced anything about being 'baptized into Christ' needs to appear in the SoF.
Blessings,
Oz
 

OzSpen

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OzSpen , JLB , JohnDB
Lastly, you wrote:
We believe in a personal devil, Satan, who, along with all his angels, called demons or evil spirits, are destined to spend eternity in hell. They seek to deceive people, defeat believers, and destroy the work of God. They can be resisted by believers, who are protected by God and the intercession of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Not to downplay Satan, but I think this statement gives Satan too much credit. I understand from the book of Job that Satan only has the authority which God grants him in a believers life. In the case of Job, God uses Satan to shift the thinking of Job from one of fear to that of relationship. This statement also gives the excuse "The devil made me do it". While this may be true on occasion, we are still liable for our own lusts and deceitfulness and we must be accountable for our own sinful nature.
SB,

I didn't add anything to the OP but rewrote it in shorter sentences.

Oz
 

JLB

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gessh were not opening a church up baptism is baptism .but if who ever insist so be it .waste of time

I don’t believe teaching people sound doctrine about baptism, all three, to be a waste of time.


Let’s try and work together and build a solid community SOF.




JLB
 

ezra

 
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Let’s try and work together and build a solid community SOF.
you do the building my input is not welcomed a S O F is a core belief teaching falls under doctrine i never said baptism teaching was a waste of time.. what a waste of time is all isms of baptism which follows salvation ..but then again i am such a rebel
 

JLB

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you do the building my input is not welcomed a S O F is a core belief teaching falls under doctrine i never said baptism teaching was a waste of time.. what a waste of time is all isms of baptism which follows salvation ..but then again i am such a rebel

If you have some things to add to the SOF discussion, we would all like to hear what you have to say.



JLB
 

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