Saturday, February 26, 2011

Hierarchy of Belief

What must one believe to be a Christian? Let me lay it out on a scale, from the most fundamental and necessary to the least. Only one who believes the entire scale can truly call him or herself a Bible-believing Christian, and I would add, truly a person of faith in the fullest sense of the word. Will people who believe less than the whole scale be saved? Yes, I do think that is possible, but they are weak in faith and limited in their growth into Christ.
  • Jesus rose from the dead
  • Jesus is the Son of God, God with us
  • Jesus is our leader, unquestioned, as is everything he taught and said
  • The Old Testament is true, every jot and tittle
  • Moses was an actual deliverer, the Exodus an actual migration
  • Noah was an actual person, the Flood an actual event
  • Adam and Eve were actual persons, the Creation Week an actual occurrence
What is generally concentrated on in discussions of Christian doctrine is the why's and how's (e.g. penal substitution, grace rather than works, etc.), but often at the cost of ignoring what is actually the foundation underlying everything. Christianity starts with an event--Jesus rising from the dead. If you buy the top of the list, the next three are logically consequent in turn, leading to the last three. One repercussion: a theistic evolutionist is not in any way, shape or form, a biblical Christian.