What are the true 'Salvation' doctrines?

RonJohnSilver

Well-Known Member
First off, this is not an adversarial question. I'm preparing a study on basic Christian doctrines and it often helps me think more clearly and exhaustively if I can see what others see. So, here's the question....at the bare minimum, what beliefs does a person absolutely have to get right to ensure their salvation? Not their santification or growth, but salvation.
Here are some starter issues...
the inspiration and authority of Scripture;
the Trinity;
the deity of Jesus Christ;
His substitutionary atonement;
His bodily resurrection from the dead;
His bodily return;
Justified by grace through faith apart from works;

Thank you all, RJS.
 

BrotherKev

Servant
Jew, Gentile, or 'the Church, the Body of Christ?'
Who's speaking to which audience at what time. 'In the beginning,' to 'but now,' and 'then.'
:catball
 

BaptistJohn

Well-Known Member
First off, this is not an adversarial question. I'm preparing a study on basic Christian doctrines and it often helps me think more clearly and exhaustively if I can see what others see. So, here's the question....at the bare minimum, what beliefs does a person absolutely have to get right to ensure their salvation? Not their santification or growth, but salvation.
Here are some starter issues...
the inspiration and authority of Scripture;
the Trinity;
the deity of Jesus Christ;
His substitutionary atonement;
His bodily resurrection from the dead;
His bodily return;
Justified by grace through faith apart from works;

Thank you all, RJS.
This is very vague questions.
I probably have answer to your question but I'm not sure what you asking
 

RonJohnSilver

Well-Known Member
Sorry I wasn't clear in my original post. This is for an upcoming class I'm teaching. I know there are a number of elements to the Christian faith but I'm asking which do you consider absolutely critical to being saved/not saved.

Those things I mentioned are some doctrines that, while important, may or may not be absolutes for salvation.

For example, I consider the deity of Jesus to be essential to salvation. Get that wrong and you're hell bound. What about the others listed? Is it salvation-critical to believe in the Bible? Is it necessary to believe in the Trinity? Can you be saved without believing in the atonement of Jesus? Repentance was mentioned by EverlastingLIfe, what about that? Any other doctrines critical to salvation? And I will review the thread mattfivefour mentioned. Hope that helps. RJS
 

Everlasting Life

Through Faith in Jesus
This is an interesting thread. :nod


Repentance was mentioned by EverlastingLIfe, what about that?

In regards to repentance, I thought I'd mention what I was thinking on that. If I'm understanding correctly, repentance is a change of mind or change of heart about sin in understanding the destructiveness of sin, it's offense to God and agreeing with God about how very wrong sin is. That in response to the conviction of the Holy Spirit about sin, one has a deep sorrow of sin and turns in their mind or has a change of heart from approving sin to a repudiation of sin.

In Ephesians (this was my go back to passage for a long time in reminding myself of how one is saved):

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. Ephesians 2:8-9

Thus the often stated phrase: by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone (praise God!).


Paul speaks of repentance leading to salvation, which makes me think that repentance is an important part of the Holy Spirit bringing a convicted one to the essential salvation step of placing faith in Jesus Christ:

For godly grief produces a repentance not to be regretted and leading to salvation, but worldly grief produces death. 2 Cor 7:10

So, would it be fair to say that repentance is an important process of the Holy Spirit leading a soul to placing their faith in Jesus for Salvation as Ephesians states?





In other examples of repentance in the bible, I notice in the OT that Solomon in his prayer for Israel refers to a change of heart and repenting along with turning back to God with all their heart and soul:

Prayer of Solomon for Israel:

“When they sin against you—for there is no one who does not sin—and you become angry with them and give them over to their enemies, who take them captive to their own lands, far away or near; 47 and if they have a change of heart in the land where they are held captive, and repent and plead with you in the land of their captors and say, ‘We have sinned, we have done wrong, we have acted wickedly’; 48 and if they turn back to you with all their heart and soul in the land of their enemies who took them captive, and pray to you toward the land you gave their ancestors, toward the city you have chosen and the temple I have built for your Name; 49 then from heaven, your dwelling place, hear their prayer and their plea, and uphold their cause. 50 And forgive your people, who have sinned against you; forgive all the offenses they have committed against you, and cause their captors to show them mercy;

1 Kings 8:46-50




Here's some New Testament passages about repentance:

The Lord does not delay His promise, as some understand delay, but is patient with you, not wanting any to perish but all to come to repentance.
2 Peter 3:9


When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?”


Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.”
Acts 2:37-39


I testified to both Jews and Greeks about repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus. Acts 20:21


Or do you despise the riches of His kindness, restraint, and patience, not recognizing that God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repentance? But because of your hardness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath, when God’s righteous judgment is revealed. Romans 2:4-5
 

PhilR

Well-Known Member
First off, this is not an adversarial question. I'm preparing a study on basic Christian doctrines and it often helps me think more clearly and exhaustively if I can see what others see. So, here's the question....at the bare minimum, what beliefs does a person absolutely have to get right to ensure their salvation? Not their santification or growth, but salvation.
Here are some starter issues...
the inspiration and authority of Scripture;
the Trinity;
the deity of Jesus Christ;
His substitutionary atonement;
His bodily resurrection from the dead;
His bodily return;
Justified by grace through faith apart from works;

Thank you all, RJS.
Here is the salvation doctrine in a nutshell from a few passages. See Romans chap's 3 thru 5; Galatians chap's 2 and 3; 1 Cor 15: 1-4; Eph 1: 13, 14.
 

Wings Like Eagles

Well-Known Member
First off, this is not an adversarial question. I'm preparing a study on basic Christian doctrines and it often helps me think more clearly and exhaustively if I can see what others see. So, here's the question....at the bare minimum, what beliefs does a person absolutely have to get right to ensure their salvation? Not their santification or growth, but salvation.
Here are some starter issues...
the inspiration and authority of Scripture;
the Trinity;
the deity of Jesus Christ;
His substitutionary atonement;
His bodily resurrection from the dead;
His bodily return;
Justified by grace through faith apart from works;

Thank you all, RJS.
I'm going to pose a somewhat radical departure from the intellectual exercise of, "Just tell me what thoughts I must hold to be saved?" and say that salvation does not occur in the head. It occurs in the changed heart, brought about by grace through faith. God will take away a heart of stone and replace it with a heart of flesh, the moment that we realize that we have no power to save ourselves and cry out to Him in humility and agreement with Him that we are sinners who deserve hell. "There is no other Name, given among people, by which we must be saved." My experience (and that of many, many believers) is that you will automatically believe all of the basic doctrines, the moment you believe and trust Him.
 

Tall Timbers

Imperfect but forgiven
My experience (and that of many, many believers) is that you will automatically believe all of the basic doctrines, the moment you believe and trust Him.

If a person is in a part of the world where there is little or no familiarity with Christianity, the new Believer who has come to believe and trust in Jesus may not have much understanding of anything beyond the knowing that God heard his/her prayer and he/she's been forgiven/saved.
 

Wings Like Eagles

Well-Known Member
If a person is in a part of the world where there is little or no familiarity with Christianity, the new Believer who has come to believe and trust in Jesus may not have much understanding of anything beyond the knowing that God heard his/her prayer and he/she's been forgiven/saved.
I do not think that you will understand the basic doctrines yet--that takes some amount of Bible study--but believing God is the beginning. Why would anyone even crack open a Bible, if they do not believe that God authored it to inform us of the events which transpired to make salvation possible? I never opened a Bible before I received salvation. "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom."
 

Tall Timbers

Imperfect but forgiven
Why would anyone even crack open a Bible, if they do not believe that God authored it to inform us of the events which transpired to make salvation possible?

A person may have never even heard of a Bible, and may not have access to one even if they knew what it was. They may not know how to read, and may never learn to read during their lifetime.

Growing up in a catholic family in SoCal, I knew that the Bible had something to do with God but I didn't know the the Bible was/is the Word of God. The first time I opened and read from the Bible that was given to me by a neighbor, I found Jesus.
 

Wings Like Eagles

Well-Known Member
A person may have never even heard of a Bible, and may not have access to one even if they knew what it was. They may not know how to read, and may never learn to read during their lifetime.
Knowing the Bible is not necessary to be saved. It is good to know and understand the Word of God but think of the huge numbers of Christians of the past, who did not know how to read or understand the Bible. However, I'm convinced that every one who has received salvation did cry out to the Father and believe that Jesus could save them from the hell that they deserved, because of their sin. "There is no other Name, given among people, by which we must be saved." Amen?
Growing up in a catholic family in SoCal, I knew that the Bible had something to do with God but I didn't know the the Bible was/is the Word of God. The first time I opened and read from the Bible that was given to me by a neighbor, I found Jesus.
Me too. But, what drew me was the Father's calling--through convincing me of my sin (by the power of His Spirit) and observing other Christians. I was confirmed in the faith through my reading and study of the Bible--but that is a work and not necessary to salvation. It all works together in the sanctifying work of the Spirit but it is in addition to salvation which is by grace through faith alone. Yes?
 
Last edited:

RonJohnSilver

Well-Known Member
Think of it the questions this way....
Can a person be a legitimate Christian with their name in the Book of Life, bound for glory, etc. and not believe the Bible or even believe in the Bible? Is that a salvation doctrine?
How about this? Same question, but now can a person be a Christian...and not believe in the deity of Jesus?
Is the person who denies Jesus' deity bound for Heaven or Hell?
How about the person who denies the Trinity? Heaven or Hell?
You get the idea. That's what I'm trying to get to. And you can insert any of those doctrines at the beginning of the thread into the question.

Ultimately, in the class I'm preparing, we'll get to the point of asking questions like, exactly what is the critical error of Catholicism? Is it Mary? Or the Pope? Or the Sacraments? Give me the one point of doctrine on which a Catholic's eternal salvation hinges. Of Mormonism? Jehovah's Witnesses? Hinduism? Islam?

My goal is to determine exactly where the spiritual battle needs to be. Do you argue with a JW about which Bible to use? Is that the battle that will determine their salvation? So, that is my intent in asking these questions...the same questions I'll ask my class.
 

mattfivefour

Administrator
Staff member
Brother, the critical error of ALL of those groups you mention is the denial that faith in the sufficiency of Christ's sacrifice is ALL that is necessary for salvation. Every one of them either adds works to Christ's sacrifice or denies Him and His sacrifice entirely. Everything else stems from that error. It does not matter the critical point of doctrine each religion or sect holds as central: if it differs from "Christ and Him crucified" --and that alone-- then they are wrong in the only thing that matters, and their adherents are not saved
 

RonJohnSilver

Well-Known Member
Brother, the critical error of ALL of those groups you mention is the denial that faith in the sufficiency of Christ's sacrifice is ALL that is necessary for salvation. Every one of them either adds works to Christ's sacrifice or denies Him and His sacrifice entirely. Everything else stems from that error. It does not matter the critical point of doctrine each religion or sect holds as central: if it differs from "Christ and Him crucified" --and that alone-- then they are wrong in the only thing that matters, and their adherents are not saved
I agree wholeheartedly. The point I was trying to get to was that despite the numerous errors in doctrine that these groups have, getting the nature of Jesus wrong and the atonement is catastrophic. You said it more succinctly than I. So much so that, if it's o.k. with you, I'll just copy your statement into my presentation.
 

Everlasting Life

Through Faith in Jesus
As I'm reading this thought comes to me: It seems that if the most important doctrine of all, save by grace through faith in Jesus Christ, is not gotten right in the first place, then this will lend to faultiness in all other doctrines as well. Greatest error begetting further error so to speak.

Growing up in a pretty legalistic cult, it wasn't until the Salvation Doctrine was understood and acted on by placing trusting faith in Jesus, that I finally began to start to understand other doctrines. Some doctrines I didn't understand until years later but I was saved. I had to take many years to just let the Salvation Doctrine marinate in my mind, heart and soul and let that Doctrine bring healing in my life. As far as other Doctrines, I think there was some rudimentary understanding but it's taken time for me to really grow in understanding of other doctrines (by God's grace :) ).
 

Wings Like Eagles

Well-Known Member
As I'm reading this thought comes to me: It seems that if the most important doctrine of all, save by grace through faith in Jesus Christ, is not gotten right in the first place, then this will lend to faultiness in all other doctrines as well. Greatest error begetting further error so to speak.

Growing up in a pretty legalistic cult, it wasn't until the Salvation Doctrine was understood and acted on by placing trusting faith in Jesus, that I finally began to start to understand other doctrines. Some doctrines I didn't understand until years later but I was saved. I had to take many years to just let the Salvation Doctrine marinate in my mind, heart and soul and let that Doctrine bring healing in my life. As far as other Doctrines, I think there was some rudimentary understanding but it's taken time for me to really grow in understanding of other doctrines (by God's grace :) ).
Yes--hard to know which has done more damage to the cause of Christ--legalism or frank apostasy. We are opposed by a wily devil who knows our human weaknesses very well. In the account of the Fall of Adam and Eve, both are represented. Eve was already under Satan's power when she resorted to the legalism of "...we are not even to touch it..." when she spoke of the forbidden fruit. God didn't say that they could not touch it--only that they could not EAT it. The Jews of Jesus day had a dizzying array of laws in addition to the Law of Moses. My favorite was the one where, if someone owed you some money, you were not permitted to collect it on the Sabbath because that would have been considered to be a "work" but, if you happened to pass underneath the debtor's window and he just happened to drop the money as you went past the window, you were permitted to catch it. In Adam's case, he apparently fell into doubt/unbelief when the devil tempted and Adam ate what he had been directly told by God not to eat, on pain of death. Satan uses the same old tricks over and over and without the grace of God, we would all fall permanently into Satan's trap. The Good News is that we can receive forgiveness and redemption through Jesus Messiah.
 
Top