Monday, October 10, 2005

Can Gays be Christian?

Just read this belief statement from a "gay-friendly" church, and you tell me. Stop the madness.

Statement of Faith

1. The Bible is the inspired Word of God, the only guide and rule of our faith and practice.

2. In the Triune-God - equal in every divine attribute as three distinct persons executing distinct but harmonious offices as God the Father, the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.

3. That by the Shedding of His blood, Jesus Christ made provision for salvation to all who believe.

4. That salvation is by God's grace alone and is received through sincere, Godly repentance and a wholehearted acceptance of Jesus Christ as one's personal savior.

5. That water baptism, by immersion, in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, is commanded by God, not as a saving ordinance, but as an outward sign of an inward work.

6. The Lord's Supper (Communion) is a type of the broken body and shed blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, and that all Christian believers, regardless of church affiliation, may partake of the Lord's Supper.

7. The baptism of the Holy Spirit is a definite experience, not identical with conversion.

8. That the power of God to heal the sick, in answer to believing prayer, is provided for in the atonement, and that God is willing to, and does heal today.

9. In the rapture of the church and the second coming of Jesus Christ.

10. That there will be a final judgement, whereby all will stand before God.

11. That the "Great Commission" of Jesus to "go into all the world and preach the Gospel (Good News) to every creature" (Mark 16:15) is the joyous challenge given to every follower of Christ.


At 3:19 AM, Blogger nathaniel adam king said...

The brevity of most of their 'statements' speaks greatly about the depth of their beliefs.

At 8:02 AM, Blogger Zeke said...

Adam, it would be interesting to compare Open Door's belief statements with the belief statements from your church. Or the Apostle's Creed, for that matter. I don't think your point is valid, but investigate for yourself.

At 3:56 PM, Blogger nathaniel adam king said...

I would agree completely that my church's statement shows the depth of their beliefs. They are not long, as they are not deep. So, I will point to another confession that I would like to see used more, showing the depth of their beliefs...

Open Door:
Statement of Faith 1. The Bible is the inspired Word of God, the only guide and rule of our faith and practice.

Westminster Confession:
1:1 Although the light of nature and the works of creation and providence do so far manifest the goodness, wisdom, and power of God, as to leave men unexcusable (Psa_19:1-3; Rom_1:19, Rom_1:20, Rom_1:32; Rom_2:1, Rom_2:14, Rom_2:15); yet they are not sufficient to give that knowledge of God and of His will, which is necessary unto salvation (1Co_1:21; 1Co_2:13, 1Co_2:14). Therefore it pleased the Lord, at sundry times, and in diverse manners, to reveal Himself, and to declare that His will unto His Church (Heb_1:1); and afterwards, for the better preserving and propagating of the truth, and for the more sure establishment and comfort of the Church against the corruption of the flesh, and the malice of Satan and of the world, to commit the same wholly unto writing (Pro_22:19-21; Isa_8:19, Isa_8:20; Mat_4:4, Mat_4:7, Mat_4:10; Luk_1:3, Luk_1:4; Rom_15:4); which maketh the Holy Scripture to be most necessary(2Ti_3:15; 2Pe_1:19); those former ways of God’s revealing His will unto His people being now ceased (Heb_1:1, Heb_1:2).
1:2 Under the name of Holy Scripture, or the Word of God written, are now contained all the books of the Old and New Testament, which are these:

Books of the Old Testament
Genesis 1 Kings Ecclesiastes Obadiah
Exodus 2 Kings Song of Songs Jonah
Leviticus 1 Chronicles Isaiah Micah
Numbers 2 Chronicles Jeremiah Nahum
Deuteronomy Ezra Lamentations Habakkuk
Joshua Nehemiah Ezekiel Zephaniah
Judges Esther Daniel Haggai
Ruth Job Hosea Zechariah
1 Samuel Psalms Joel Malachi
2 Samuel Proverbs Amos

Books of the New Testament
Matthew 2 Corinthians 1 Timothy 2 Peter
Mark Galatians 2 Timothy 1 John
Luke Ephesians Titus 2 John
John Philippians Philemon 3 John
Acts Colossians Hebrews Jude
Romans 1 Thessalonians James Revelation
1 Corinthians 2 Thessalonians 1 Peter

All which are given by inspiration of God to be the rule of faith and life (Luk_16:29, Luk_16:31; Eph_2:20; 2Ti_3:16; Rev_22:18, Rev_22:19).
1:3 The books commonly called Apocrypha, not being of divine inspiration, are no part of the canon of the Scripture; and therefore are of no authority in the Church of God, nor to be any otherwise approved, or made use of, than other human writings (Luk_24:27, Luk_24:44; Rom_3:2; 2Pe_1:21).
1:4 The authority of the Holy Scripture, for which it ought to be believed and obeyed, dependeth not upon the testimony of any man, or Church; but wholly upon God (who is truth itself) the author thereof: and therefore it is to be received because it is the Word of God (1Th_2:13; 2Ti_3:16; 2Pe_1:19, 2Pe_1:21; 1Jo_5:9)
1:5 We may be moved and induced by the testimony of the Church to a high and reverent esteem of the Holy Scripture (1Ti_3:15). And the heavenliness of the matter, the efficacy of the doctrine, the majesty of the style, the consent of all the parts, the scope of the whole (which is, to give all glory to God), the full discovery it makes of the only way of man’s salvation, the many other incomparable excellencies, and the entire perfection thereof, are arguments whereby it doth abundantly evidence itself to be the Word of God: yet notwithstanding, our full persuasion and assurance of the infallible truth and divine authority thereof, is from the inward work of the Holy Spirit bearing witness by and with the Word in our hearts(Isa_59:21; Joh_16:13, Joh_16:14;1Co_2:10-12; 1Jo_2:20, 1Jo_2:27).
1:6 The whole counsel of God, concerning all things necessary for His own glory, man’s salvation, faith, and life, is either expressly set down in Scripture, or by good and necessary consequence may be deduced from Scripture: unto which nothing at any time is to be added, whether by new revelations of the Spirit, or traditions of men (Gal_1:8, Gal_1:9; 2Th_2:2; 2Ti_3:15-17). Nevertheless we acknowledge the inward illumination of the Spirit of God to be necessary for the saving understanding of such things as are revealed in the Word(Joh_6:45; 1Co_2:9, 1Co_2:10, 1Co_2:12): and that there are some circumstances concerning the worship of God, and government of the Church, common to human actions and societies, which are to be ordered by the light of nature and Christian prudence, according to the general rules of the Word, which are always to be observed (1Co_11:13, 1Co_11:14; 1Co_14:26, 1Co_14:40).
1:7 All things in Scripture are not alike in plain in themselves, nor alike clear unto all (2Pe_3:16): yet those things which are necessary to be known, believed, and observed for salvation, are so clearly propounded and opened in some place of Scripture or other, that not only the learned, but the unlearned, in a due use of the ordinary means, may attain unto a sufficient understanding of them (Psa_119:105, Psa_119:130).
1:8 The Old Testament in Hebrew (which was the native language of the people of God of old), and the New Testament in Greek (which at the time of writing of it was most generally known to the nations), being immediately inspired by God, and by His singular care and providence kept pure in all ages, are therefore authentical (Mat_5:18); so as, in all controversies of religion, the Church is finally to appeal unto them (Isa_8:20; Joh_5:39, Joh_5:46; Act_15:15). But, because these original tongues are not known to all the people of God, who have right unto, and interest in the Scriptures, and are commanded, in the fear of God, to read and search them (Joh_5:39), therefore they are to be translated into the vulgar language of every nation unto which they come (1Co_14:6, 1Co_14:9, 1Co_14:11, 1Co_14:12, 1Co_14:24, 1Co_14:27, 1Co_14:28), that the Word of God dwelling plentifully in all, they may worship Him in an acceptable manner (Col_3:16); and, through patience and comfort of the Scriptures, may have hope (Rom_15:4).
1:9 The infallible rule of interpretation of Scripture is the Scripture itself: and therefore, when there is a question about the true and full sense of any Scripture (which is not manifold, but one), it must be searched and known by other places that speak more clearly (Act_15:15; 2Pe_1:20, 2Pe_1:21).
1:10 The supreme judge by which all controversies of religion are to be determined, and all decrees of councils, opinions of ancient writers, doctrines of men, and private spirits, are to be examined; and in whose sentence we are to rest; can be no other but the Holy Spirit speaking in the Scripture (Mat_22:29, Mat_22:31; Act_28:25; Eph_2:20).

At 3:59 PM, Blogger nathaniel adam king said...

And the Apostle's creed was not meant to be an exhaustive confession of a church's belief. It is argued that it was merely meant as a baptismal confession.

At 4:11 PM, Blogger Zeke said...

I wouldn't quibble a bit about what you're saying with regard to the Westminster Confession, but I'll just ask that you concede the point that the length of a church's belief statement isn't necessarily an indicator of the depth of their beliefs. Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa--home to some of the most meticulous Bible teaching in the country--has a very modest belief statement, for instance.

Peace, bro. Love working through this stuff with you.


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