Understanding Biblical Doctrines
All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16-17
The objective of this blog is to convey in a simplified, easy to understand manner an understanding of biblical doctrines and its importance in the lives of believers.
All Scripture is taken from the NKJV, ESV and NLT Versions
WHAT IS BIBLICAL DOCTRINE?
Understanding biblical doctrines is very crucial to our Christian faith. Who we are as believers, What we do, our lives and vocation and service to God must be based on sound biblical teachings, sound doctrines. If our doctrine is based soundly upon Scripture, then it is possible that we are indeed walking in the path God designed for us. *** Doctrines is often times translated as Teachings***
Merriam Webster defines DOCTRINE as a principle or position or the body of principles in a branch of knowledge or system of belief : dogma,
: something that is taught. According to the Baker's Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology, DOCTRINE (Gk. didaskalia [didaskaliva]). is the act of teaching or that which is taught. In Scripture, then, doctrine refers to the entire body of essential theological truths that define and describe that message ( 1 Tim 1:10 ; 4:16 ; 6:3 ; Titus 1:9 ).
Biblical doctrine helps us understand the will of God for our lives. Biblical doctrine teaches us the nature and the character of God (Psalm 90:2, John 4:24), the path of salvation through faith (Ephesians 2:8–9; Romans 10:9–10), instruction for the church (1 Corinthians 14:26; Titus 2:1–10), and God’s standard of holiness for our lives (1 Peter 1:14–17; 1 Corinthians 6:18–20). It provides clarity to biblical truths and answers to questions such as "What does God want us to know about Him, about His divine plan for mankind? Understanding biblical doctrines prevents us from falling into the traps of erroneous or false doctrine which scripture has already cautioned us about. "For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers;" 2 Timothy 4:3 NKJV.
Let us first of all define the Christian Faith.
According to Hebrews 11:1, faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. The bible goes ahead later on in the chapter to highlight examples of people who displayed great faith throughout biblical history, the most popular bible character, being Abraham. The most essential thing to know about faith, according to scripture, is that without faith, we cannot please God; in fact, Hebrews 11:6 states it clearly that it is impossible to please the Lord God without faith. As Christians, we must believe in the Almighty God, the Triune God we cannot see, believe that He exists and is ever-present in the universe.
For our faith to increase daily, we must accurately understand that the Bible, The Word of God, is the foundation of our faith. We must understand the Word of God if we want more faith. Apostle Paul states in Romans 10:17, " So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." Faith comes by hearing and putting it into action. The Word of God is indeed the source of our faith, and when we apply that faith in our lives through our actions, it pleases God. James 2:14-24. There are various types of faith, and they include: saving faith, indwelling faith, the spiritual gift of faith, and doctrinal faith, which I want to focus on here.
What is Doctrinal Faith?
It is a type of faith that simply has to do with what we believe in; the Christian's declaration of faith is called the " Statement of Faith." To have an accurate statement of faith, your personal faith must be entirely and effectively founded upon the Word of God. If you look at documents or go on websites of Christian-based organizations, ministries, etc., you will observe that they all have their Statement of Faith listed. If you do not see a statement of belief or faith in a Christian organization you are interested in affiliating with, you must ask to see one before going any further with that organization. You want to ensure that what you believe in is what they also believe in, and you are not being misled by false doctrines.
UNDERSTANDING THE DOCTRINE OF SCRIPTURE
“The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law. Deut. 29:29 ESV
There are two types of revelation from God
1. General Revelation
2. Special Revelation
With general revelation, the Lord God's existence and power are revealed through nature ( what we physically see around us). "For his invisible attributes; namely, his eternal power, and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse." Romans 1:20. Secondly, it comes from the conscience, see Romans 2:14-16 and thirdly through history, 1 Corinthians 10:1-6.
The Holy Bible is the special revelation of God to man. Throughout the ages, it has had the greatest influence on humankind in every sphere of our existence. Revelation was the act of God that gave men knowledge about Himself and his creation. The Bible was written by over forty men inspired of God to share Himself with humankind. Their assignment was to record the things that were revealed to them and through them to the world. His revelation is to show not only Himself but His divine will for all humankind. The things that God has chosen to reveal to us is sufficient to carry out His purpose in our lives. We do not need to know more than that; God has chosen to keep certain things hidden hence His word in Deut 29:29, which states the secret things belong to the Lord our God.
The Importance of Revelation
Why is the Revelation of God essential to human kind?
1. The Bible which is the revelation of God reveals the Person of God. Although God has revealed Himself to us through general revelation i.e nature, Romans 1:18-21, history 1 Corinthians 10:1-6, God has used special revelation to reveal His person. He has revealed Himself by His attributes, His names e.g Yahweh, I am, and His divine plan.
2. For Salvation Purposes - The sacrifice that was made on the cross by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, the Son of God could only be revealed through special revelation. John 1:10.History i.e general revelation reveals Christ existed and that He died but special revelation reveals why He died ( for our sins).
3. It is important for all doctrine and for our Christian life - Without the Bible, we will not be able to completely understand the teachings of God on certain matters when we study it, and also differentiate between sound doctrine and false doctrine. As a result it will be quite challenging to live a righteous life; to live the way God desires for us live. See 2 Timothy 3:16-17.
The Revelation of God has been revealed to us for a purpose. It has been revealed to show who God is, His divine will for our lives, and how He desires for us to live as His children. The Bible, which is special revelation, was given to know how we should live and how to serve Him faithfully. The Bible is our manual to help guide our lives, how we live, how we relate with others. It is also for encouragement, motivation, it reveal areas in our lives where we are committing sin, and reveals how to use it as a weapon to fight the enemy of our soul, satan. The Bible is God's revelation of Himself to us. Therefore it is necessary to treasure it, study it daily, and proactively apply the biblical principles to your life. It enables you to know God more, and when we do, He will continually reveal new things to us. Joshua 1:8, James 1:22.
UNDERSTANDING THE DOCTRINE OF SCRIPTURE
The Bible, which is the Word of God, was designed by the Lord God to inspire humankind. The Bible's primary purpose is to affect change in people, i.e., impact the lives of everyone who reads and meditate on God's Holy Word in a manner that brings about a transformation in their lives. The Bible is more than just a historical book; it's more than a book filled with archeological and geographical information. It is a unique and powerful book written by over forty authors of various backgrounds over 1600 years to demonstrate God's love for humankind.
All Scripture is given by inspiration of God according to 2 Timothy 3:16a. Through the supernatural power of His Holy Spirit, these forty human authors of the Bible were inspired to write God's Word for the sake of humankind. God wanted humans to know about Him, Who He is, and His hope for all humanity. The entire Scripture/Bible is full of inspiration from the history, testimonies, poetry, songs to the epistles, and inspired by the Holy Spirit. The infallible and inerrant Word of God has been given to all God's children as the manual to guide their life's journey as they strive to live a life of godliness.
Friends, to live the life that God has purposed for you, to know the heart and mind of God, every Christian must read, study, and meditate on His Word regularly and apply the contents to their lives. No other book on earth, but the Bible will bring you closer to the Lord God, mature you as a believer, and help you fulfill your divine purpose.
The Inerrancy of Scripture
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