Doctrines of the Christian Faith

Doctrines of the Christian Faith

What is a Doctrine?

By definition, a doctrine is said to be a set of beliefs, a principle or creed of principles or a system of beliefs held and taught by a Church, political party or another group. Like every major world religion, Christianity has its own doctrines which can be classified as major or fundamental and minor doctrines.

Why is doctrine important? Why should Christians know the doctrines of the Bible?

1) The first and foremost reason for studying doctrines is because we love God. If we love God, we’ll want to know all about Him – His nature, His character, His purposes, His commandments; about the work, He’s doing in the world, about His work in saving people and about His plans for the future. In other words, we’ll want to study ‘doctrine’. All our doctrines are about God.

2) We also need to study doctrines because what you believe will shape your spiritual life. The way you think about God will affect the way you relate to God. If you don’t believe in the deity of Jesus Christ then it follows that you don’t believe that He is the only way to the Father.

The same is true with the doctrine of the Trinity. If you don’t believe in the Trinity, you can’t believe that God is eternally loving. It’s the doctrine of the Trinity that gives us the confidence to believe that love is in the very nature of God. Studying doctrine is about finding out the truth about God so we can relate to Him in a more personal way.

3) Thorough knowledge of Bible doctrines will give you the tools to sort out all the practical problems of living in this complex fallen world – even in matters where the Bible doesn’t speak directly. In other words, we won’t know how to live in this world without knowing doctrines because without it we won’t understand the world we live in.

4) We need to study Bible doctrine so that we will be equipped to share the good news of salvation to the lost world. We have to be competent to answer questions. What are you going to say to someone who asks how God can allow a tsunami to sweep away the scores of thousands of people? How can you answer that question if you’ve never grappled with the doctrine of God’s sovereignty?

How do you answer when your child says to you ‘I’ve tried to become a Christian but it didn’t work?’ You’ll need a very clear grasp then of just what saving faith is, and how it relates to the human will, and where assurance fits in.

Dorothy Sayers in her essay Creed or Chaos had the following to say on the fundamental problem of trying to practice the Christian faith without knowing what it actually is all about:


“It is worse than useless for Christians to talk about the importance of Christian morality unless they are prepared to take their stand upon the fundamentals of Christian theology. It is a lie to say that dogma does not matter; it matters enormously.

It is fatal to let people suppose that Christianity is only a mode of feeling; it is vitally necessary to insist that it is first and foremost a rational explanation of the universe.

It is hopeless to offer Christianity as a vaguely idealistic aspiration of a simple and consoling kind; it is, on the contrary, a hard, tough, exacting, and complex doctrine, steeped in a drastic and uncompromising realism. And it is fatal to imagine that everybody knows quite well what Christianity is and needs only a little encouragement to practice it.

The brutal fact is that in this nation not one person in a hundred has the faintest notion what the Church teaches about God or man or society or the person of Jesus Christ.

Sound Doctrine

Doctrine must be true and sound. It must come from God, not from mere men (John 7:16). In several of his letters, it’s evident how the apostle Paul placed a very high value on a doctrine which is true and must be sound (1 Timothy 1:3, 10; Titus 1:9). John urges us also to ignore and reject anyone who does not abide by the doctrines of Christ in 2 John 9-10.

Five Fundamental Doctrines of the Christian Faith

Christian doctrines can be classified into major and minor. Major doctrines are those that have great effect or impact on one’s salvation. Minor doctrines, on the other hand, are those that are considered secondary. Secondary doctrines are those that Christians often debate or disagree about but have little or no impact on salvation.

There are five fundamental doctrines of the Christian faith which constitute the basic theology of our faith. Without these five doctrines, we cannot be considered as Bible-believing, Christ-centered, and Spirit-baptized Christian. We understand that many Christians today come from varied backgrounds and denominations and they faithfully believe and teach the five core doctrines of the faith.

However, there are also many false teachers today who call themselves Christians but deliberately deny one or more of these core doctrines by teaching explicitly or implicitly against them.

These five doctrines are essential and anyone who does not hold to these doctrines cannot be considered Christian at all because he does not understand and has not believed in the full Gospel message. Any person or movement or who teaches anything contrary to or undermines these five doctrines must be rebuked (if they claim to be Christians) and, if they do not repent must be rejected according to the Word of the Lord.

The Five Fundamental Doctrines of Christianity include the following:

1) The Trinity – There is one God in three persons.

2) The Person of Jesus Christ – Jesus is fully man and fully God for all eternity.

3) Salvation – It is by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.

4) The Scripture – It is entirely inerrant and sufficient for all Christian life.

5) The Second Coming of Christ – Jesus Christ is coming back to earth to rule and judge.


For a more in-depth study of the essential doctrines of the Christian faith,  get the book “Bible Doctrine: Essential Teachings of the Christian Faith” by Wayne Grudem and Jeff Purswell.

How do we know the Bible is God’s Word? What is sin and where did it come from? How is Jesus fully God and fully man? What are spiritual gifts? When and how will Christ return? If you’ve asked questions like these, then “systematic theology” is no abstract term. It’s an approach to finding answers every Christian needs to know.

Bible Doctrine takes a highly commended upper-level textbook on systematic theology and makes it accessible to the average reader. Abridged from Wayne Grudem’s award-winning Systematic Theology, Bible Doctrine covers the same essentials of the faith, giving you a firm grasp on seven key topics:

  • The Doctrine of the Word of God
  • The Doctrine of God
  • The Doctrine of Man
  • The Doctrine of Christ
  • The Doctrine of the Application of Redemption
  • The Doctrine of the Church
  • The Doctrine of the Future

Like Systematic Theology, this book is marked by its clarity, its strong scriptural emphasis, its thoroughness in scope and detail, and its treatment of such timely topics as spiritual warfare and the gifts of the Spirit.

But you don’t need to have had several years of Bible school to reap the full benefits of Bible Doctrine. It’s easy to understand–and it’s packed with solid, biblical answers to your most important questions.

18 Replies to “Doctrines of the Christian Faith”

  1. Reasons for rejecting the Trinity:

    1. You go about to kill me a man who has told you the truth.
    2. Jesus a man approved of God
    3. It is not me but my Father does the works and the words aren’t mine but my Fathers.’
    4. God was in the Anointed reconciling the world to himself
    5. Your chosen disciples shall do greater works than me (Jesus) but don’t go grasping at any equality with God because as Jesus insists ‘my Father is greater than I’ and all.
    6. Jesus said the first commandment is “The Lord OUR God is one” and warned by his reference to the brazen serpent that to worship past its prescribed function becomes sin for God’s people.
    7. Biblical-Christianity? You haven’t escaped the blind alleys of Orthodoxy which is nothing but the seizure of biblical truth by that spirit which infested Diogenes.

    Biblical truth is ‘when they perceived that they were ignorant and unlearned men they took knowledge of them that they had been with Jesus’ praise the ever-living Father of our Lord Jesus.

    Jeff Benner insists that John 1 is best understood as saying, in the beginning, was the teaching & co. Wakefield’s 19th Century version has Wisdom for Logos but the idea remains that that wisdom which produced the material creation and teaching that was given to Israel that they might live by them was now embodied in Jesus, Israel’s God’s final prophet to them and the true heir of the promises made to them thus his prophetic son ‘today you have become my son’ ‘declared the son of God with power through or by his resurrection from the dead.’

    As Jesus insists his death was his true baptism of faith which faith was that God would not leave his righteous soul in Hades and Hebrews declares that the God of peace brought again our Great shepherd from the dead because IT WAS NOT POSSIBLE that death could hold him thus biblical faith understands that Jesus has broken the power of death for the righteous.

    Peace.

    1. Hey Phillip,

      Thank you for taking the time to read this post.

      You gave 7 reasons to reject the Trinity but I don’t think you made a good argument here.

      We may not read the word Trinity in the Bible but if we take what the apostles and disciples of Jesus wrote and believed at face value, we will see that they clearly believed Jesus is God.

      If you really want to prove from the Scriptures that there is no such thing as a Trinity, you’re gonna have to disprove Jesus’ divine nature. And I’d say it’s pretty hard to do that because the Old Testament testifies that Jesus has always existed. After all, He is the eternal Son of God.

      I can give you all the arguments to prove that Jesus wasn’t just a human being but also divine in nature right here but to save me some time, I would like to direct you to a post that deals with the arguments against the deity of Christ.

      Here’s the link:
      https://biblical-christianity.com/arguments-against-the-deity-of-christ

      Shalom!

    1. Hi Jeanette,

      Thanks for your comment. I just wished you did not just drop me a verse, but gave a bit of explanation why you quoted it.

      Do you agree or disagree with the above-mentioned five fundamental doctrines of the Christian faith? I hope you will come back to clarify your stand.

      God bless!

  2. Replying to the last comment… apparently the commenter (Dan) doesn’t know 7th day Adventist.

    I would not even remotely identify you as a 7th Day Adventist. Anyone who knows Adventist knows they would have listed in the majors the 7th day Sabbath. 7th day Adventists hold to the notion Sunday worship is the mark of the beast, so it is essential to worship on the 7th day Sabbath.

    The essentials are God alone, Christ alone, Scripture alone, Grace alone, Faith alone, to the glory of God alone … What is essential? Here it is:
    “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” Romans 10:9

    1. Hi Jim,

      Thanks for chiming in. Yeah, I was also surprised that a 7th Day Adventist would suspect I was one of them. So what I did was send him a link to an article on the difference between the Sabbath and the Lord’s Day.

      He went on to read that article and gave a rather exhaustive commentary in response to each and every paragraph. Should you be interested to read it, you can follow this link:
      https://biblical-christianity.com/what-is-the-difference-between-the-sabbath-and-the-lords-day

      Then scroll all the way down.

      By the way, thank you for pointing out what’s important and that is for a sinner to confess Jesus as Lord of his life and believe that Jesus died for our sins and rose again to conquer death and hell.

      Blessings …

  3. You’re rockin’ it Alice.

    Love your answers. Totally Biblical. One of your commentors must be Jewish, that’s the only reason I can think that they would say “First four doctrines are totally anti-biblical.”

    On the other side of that, even the Old Testament speaks (in not so many words) of the Son and the Spirit.

    1. Hello Wayne,

      Thank you so much for your encouragement, I really need it.

      Yeah, Saqib Yeshu might be Jewish because Jews do not believe that God exists in 3 persons and that Jesus is the Messiah and is God .

      When I put up this website I knew I would face a lot of opposition not only from other religious affiliations but even from fellow Christians who differ in some minor theology.

      But that’s okay. Like I always say, people who teach the word (like myself) will give an account to God when they will stand before Him to be judged.

      Thanks again, God bless!

    1. Hi Martin, thank you for taking time to leave your thoughts. I just wished you have given me the reasons why you do not believe that God exists in Three Persons and why you reject the dual nature of Christ.

      We may not find the word Trinity in the Bible and we also do not read Jesus directly claiming to be God but if you would just honestly seek the truth, read the Bible and interpret them in their proper context, I’m sure there will be no room left for disagreement in as far as the major doctrines of Christianity are concerned.

      Of course, there are areas where Christians do not see eye to eye such as what kind of music we should sing at church, or which day should the church gather together, or if Christians are commanded to tithe.

      These are considered minor doctrines and do not have any bearing on one’s salvation. But to not believe that Jesus is God? Jesus Himself said that unless we believe that He is who He claimed to be, we will die in our sins (John 8:24).

      Jesus is basically saying that if we do not believe He is God, we cannot have eternal life.

      In regards to the Trinity, the late Dr. Walter Martin when refuting a Jehovah Witness said that anyone who reads the New Testament and does not see that God exists in three persons is like looking at the clear blue sky and not believe it’s going to be a beautiful sunny day.

      I hope you will come back Martin so we can have a healthy sharing and discussion. God bless.

  4. Great Site… As soon I got available time… I will share Insights too… God bless and more power Alice…

    1. Thanks Ramil. Looking forward to working with you in spreading the love of God through the internet using this platform that God has blessed me with. God bless you!

  5. The Scripture – It is entirely inerrant and sufficient for all Christian life. My question is, as to what aspect this statement is correct? I want to hear you, Alice.

    1. Hi Jimmy, great question.

      Before I’ll answer your question, I believe it is important that we first properly define the terms.

      The reason the inerrancy of Scriptures is often attacked and has become a hotly debated topic even among evangelicals is because the very people who use the terms do not see eye to eye on what it really means.

      When we say that the Bible is inerrant, we’re saying that it is completely true and contains no errors in the original autographs; so it is trustworthy in all of its teachings.

      Wayne Grudem (Systematic Theology) has a solid working definition of inerrancy: “The inerrancy of Scripture means that Scripture in the original manuscripts does not affirm anything that is contrary to fact.”

      What is affirmed in this definition is that a perfect God moved human authors, by His Spirit, to perfectly transcribe what He wanted to communicate.

      We may not have any of the original writings of Scriptures today, but we have many copies of each book. Yes, there maybe differences here and there but we are confident that no essential doctrine was altered or affected. The issue of inerrancy is not precision but truthfulness.

      What about the sufficiency of Scriptures? The sufficiency of Scriptures means that the Bible alone (Sola Scriptura) is enough or sufficient for man to know everything about God and His plan for the human race.

      In other words, God has given mankind all things that are necessary for the proper understanding of who God is, what God has done in the past and what He expects from us. It means that we don’t need anymore special revelation.

      While the Bible does not tell us all the informations available from other books such as instructions on mental health and skills at living, the Bible is sufficient to equip believers for Christian life and service, it is sufficient to give the wisdom that leads to salvation and to enable the godly person to be “adequate and equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:15-17).

      What about you Jimmy, what’s your take on this topic?

    1. The first four are totally anti-biblical? Wow Saqib, I’m not sure we’re reading from the same Bible. Anyway, I know I did not cite the verses for each doctrine but if you would just take time to read the Bible and ask guidance and illumination from the Holy Spirit, I’m sure you’ll also come up with these 5 major doctrines of the Christian faith.

      I will be writing about each of these doctrines in my succeeding articles. May the good Lord bless and keep you, shalom!

    1. Hi Dan,

      Thanks for stopping by, but I am not a Seventh Day Adventist. As a matter of fact, I have a post about the difference between the Sabbath and the Lord’s Day wherein I refuted the claim of Sabbatarians that the Sabbath Day has been changed to Sunday.

      Here it is: https://biblical-christianity.com/what-is-the-difference-between-the-sabbath-and-the-lords-day

      I am a follower of Christ who has been saved by His amazing grace. My Church affiliation? I belong to a full gospel, Bible-believing and Spirit-filled Christian Church who hold to the Bible as the final authority.

      By the way, what made you think that I am a Seventh Day Adventist? The Doctrines that I have enumerated are all based on the Bible.

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