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Does Teaching Someone the Bible Make Them a Christian?

by Brandon Adams

Someone recently sent me the following argument from a paedobaptist and asked me to respond.

Obviously, if you hold to credobaptism, you won’t agree with this conclusion on it’s face, but I’d love to hear some thoughtful non-defensive responses. There is an explicitness to the gospel that is only communicated and received with a certain level of mental understanding. Which leads a lot of people to say that we can’t say someone is a Christian until they are able to grasp and profess belief in this message. I get that. But… as a worldview, as a moral basis, as a way of life, Christianity is something that is practically lived in as well. A baby born into a Christian family, from day one is given a Christian worldview. They are certainly not being trained to be atheists or pagans. Nobody exists without a worldview, and if the worldview you’re being taught is the Bible, then you are a Bible believer by default. The Jews didn’t have to debate this issue because it was so explicitly commanded that they should raise their kids as Jews. But Judaism wasn’t a religion that lacked anything Christianity does, in fact it is the same religion. It had laws that were to be obeyed with gratitude, it demanded faith in God and his promises, it threatened those in the religion not to turn away… so what changed? My argument is that nothing has changed, and in practice, we all know it. Are we not required to raise our children as Christians? “Well it depends on what you mean by Christian”. But does it? Do we tell our kids to obey God’s law? Why? To be justified? No… because they are required to. Why? If it isn’t for their justification, then why? It’s because we recognize that they are under the authority of Christ by virtue of being in your home. If we require our children to obey God’s law, with threats of discipline if they fail, yet we do not recognize them as Christians, we are demanding that they rely on their flesh to obey God’s law… this is hypocritical. For some reason this line of reasoning confuses people and makes them think I’m saying Baptists don’t raise their kids in the faith. I’m actually saying the exact opposite. They do raise them in the faith, while also saying they are not in the faith. [For the record: This is a tension I held all my days as a credobaptist. Even when I was the most conviced of the position, I couldn’t reconcile this issue.]

This is a typical paedobaptist collectivist mindset. It’s what allows them to think that entire nations can be part of the church, as the magisterial reformers practiced. Entire nations became Protestants “at the blast of a trumpet” (the governing authorities’ declaration). They ridicule baptists for being too individualistic, but we merely recognize that believing the gospel is an individual matter. Collectives (families, nations) are not saved. Individuals are.

 

 

 

Read the entire article here.

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The Wednesday Word: I know I am a Christian

August 12, 2015 1 comment

How Do I Know I’m a Christian?

I know I am a Christian because the Eternal God became a man for me (1 Timothy 3:16).

I know I am a Christian because it was promised that Christ Jesus, the God/Man, would save me (Matthew 1:21).

I know I am a Christian because Christ lived for me and credited all to me (1 Corinthians 1:30).

I know I am a Christian because Jesus became a wrath offering for me (Romans 3:25).

I know I am a Christian because Christ has given the gift of eternal life to me (John 10:28).

I know I am a Christian because Christ Jesus is the Good Shepherd who has never lost a sheep (John 18:9).

I know I am a Christian because Christ Jesus is the Lawyer who has never lost a case (John 10:27-30).

I know I’m a Christian because Jesus is the leader who has never lost a battle (Hebrews 2:10).

I know I am a Christian because I have been justified… declared not guilty (Romans 5:1).

I know I am a Christian because I have been reconciled unto God by the death of His Son (Romans 5:10).

I know I am a Christian because Christ Jesus redeemed me. He bought and paid for me at the cross (Ephesians 1:7).

I know I am a Christian because Jesus Christ was buried for me (I Corinthians 15:4)

I know I am a Christian because Jesus Christ rose from the dead for me (1 Corinthians 15:4)

I know I am a Christian because Jesus Christ ascended into Heaven for me (Luke 24:50-51).

I know I am a Christian because Jesus was made a surety of a better testament for me (Hebrews 7:22).

I know that I am a Christian because, Jesus Christ sat down in cosmic authority for me (Hebrews 10:12).

I know I am a Christian because Jesus Christ, my High Priest, ever lives to make intercession for me (Hebrews 7:25).

I know I’m a Christian because Christ Jesus intercedes to ensure all the benefits of His death are applied to me (Hebrews 7:25).

I know I am a Christian because Jesus Christ ever lives to save me to the uttermost (Hebrews 7:25).

I know I’m a Christian because his intercession for me is always a sweeping success. The Father always hears the Son (John 11:42).

I know I am a Christian because Christ Jesus is the Author of my salvation. He began it (Hebrews 12:12).

I know I am a Christian because Jesus is also the finisher of my salvation. He will finalise it! (Hebrews 12:12).

I know I am a Christian because nothing can separate me from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:38-39).

I know I am a Christian because the Bible declares; “Who shall lay anything to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifies. Who is he that condemns? It is Christ that died, yea rather that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God who also makes intercession for us” (Romans 8: 33-34).

I know I am a Christian because by one offering He (Christ) has perfected forever them that are sanctified (Hebrews 10:14).

I know I am a Christian because Jesus has purged my sins (Hebrews 1:3).

I know I am a Christian because my sins are forgotten (Hebrews 8:12).

I know I am a Christian because my sins are put away (Psalm 103:12).

I know I am a Christian because my sins are behind His back (Isaiah 38:17).

I know I am a Christian because my sins are cast into the depth of the sea (Micah 7:19).

I know I am a Christian becausethe Lord Yahweh has said, “I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions formine own sake, and will not remember thy sins” (Isaiah 43:25).

I know I am a Christian because Christ Jesus has promised to come back for me (John 14:3)

I know I’m a Christian because;
“My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness
I dare not trust the sweetest frame
But wholly lean on Jesus name.
On Christ the solid rock I stand
All other ground is sinking sand.”

And that’s the Gospel Truth!

Miles Mckee

www.milesmckee.com 

Many profess religion, but they are really of this world

December 29, 2014 Leave a comment

Spurgeon 3IV. And now, lastly, we must briefly apply this in PRACTICE. “They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.” And, first, allow me, man or woman, to apply this to thee. Thou who art of the world, whose maxims, whose habits, whose behavior, whose feelings, whose everything is worldly and carnal, list thee to this. Perhaps thou makest some profession of religion. Hear me, then. Thy boasting of religion is empty as a phantom, and shall pass away when the sun rises, as the ghosts sleep in their grave at the crowing of the cock. Thou hast some pleasure in that professioned religion of thine wherewith thou art arrayed, and which thou carriest about thee as a cloak, and usest as a stalking-horse to thy business, and a net to catch the honor in the world, and yet thou art worldly, like other men. Then I tell thee if there be no distinction between thyself and the worldly, the doom of the worldly shall be thy doom. If thou wert marked and watched, thy next door tradesman would act as thou dost, and thou actest as he does; there is no distinction between thee and the world. Hear me, then; it is God’s solemn truth. Thou art none of his. If thou art like the rest of the world, thou art of the world. Thou art a goat, and with goats thou shalt be cursed; for the sheep can always be distinguished from the goats by their appearance. O ye worldly men of the world! ye carnal professors, ye who crowd our churches, and fill our places of worship, this is God’s truth I let me say it solemnly. If I should say it as I ought, it would be weeping tears of blood. Ye are, with all your profession, “in the gall of bitterness;” with all your boastings, ye are “in bonds of iniquity;” for ye act as others, and ye shall come where others come; and it shall be done with you as with more notorious heirs of hell. There is an old story which was once told of a Dissenting minister. The old custom was, that a minister might stop at an inn, and not pay anything for his bed or his board; and when he went to preach, from place to place, he was charged nothing for the conveyance in which he rode. But on one occasion, a certain minister stopped at an inn and went to bed. The landlord listened and heard no prayer; so when he came down in the morning, he presented his bill. “Oh! I am not going to pay that, for I am a minister.” “Ah!” said the landlord, “you went to bed last night like a sinner, and you shall pay this morning like a sinner; I will not let you go.” Now, it strikes me, that this will be the case with some of you when you come to God’s bar. Though you pretended to be a Christian, you acted like a sinner, and you shall fare like a sinner too. Your actions were unrighteous; they were far from God; and you shall have a portion with those whose character was the same as yours. “Be not deceived;” it is easy to be so. God is not mocked,” though we often are, both minister and people. “God is not mocked; whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.”

Charles H. Spurgeon-The Character of Christ’s People-Delivered on Sabbath Morning, November 22, 1855

Why Theological Study Is for Everyone

August 25, 2014 3 comments

Mention the terms ‘theology’ or ‘theologian’ around most Christians and they will immediately go into a defensive position against these terms. I once was explaining a doctrine to a certain Christian lady and I simply stated, “Most Theologians believe….” and before I could finish she cut me off by stating, “I don’t like Theologians.” This attitude against the terms ‘theology’ and ‘theologians’ is prevalent among Charismatic/Pentecostals, who believe that the mind is not to be engaged when studying scripture, but instead the Holy Spirit just drops knowledge into you as you progress in your Christian life.

However, anyone who begins studying about God is studying theology and could be called a Theologian. They may not be a theologian in the professional sense of the term, but nevertheless they are still engaged in theology.

This is why I am pointing you to a good article by Jared C. Wilson. In this article Jared explains what the term ‘theology’ means and give three primary reasons why every Christian ought to be a theologian.

Here is a quote from the article:

Every Christian must be a theologian. In a variety of ways, this is something I tell my church often. And the looks I get from some surprised souls are the evidence that I have not yet adequately communicated that the purposeful theological study of God by lay people is important.

Many times the confused responses come from a misunderstanding of what is meant in this context by theology. So I tell my church what I don’t mean. When I say every Christian must be a theologian, I don’t mean that every Christian must be an academic or that every Christian must be a scholar or that every Christian must work hard at giving the impression of being a know-it-all. We all basically understand what is meant in the biblical warning that “knowledge puffs up” (1 Cor. 8:1). Nobody likes an egghead.

But the answer to formal scholasticism or dry intellectualism is not a neglect of theological study. Laypeople have no biblical warrant to leave the duty of doctrine up to pastors and professors alone. Therefore, I remind my church that theology—coming from the Greek words theos (God) and logos (word)—simply means “the knowledge (or study) of God.” If you’re a Christian, you must by definition know God. Christians are disciples of Jesus; they are student-followers of Jesus. The longer we follow Him, the more we learn about Him and, consequently, the more deeply we come to know Him.

 

To continue reading the article click here.

Confession statement 50

Published in 1646

The Text used: There has been some updating of Old English words but otherwise no changes have been made to the original texts.

CONFESSION OF FAITH of seven congregations or churches of Christ in London. which are commonly, but unjustly, called Anabaptists; published for the vindication of the truth and information of the ignorant; likewise for the taking off those aspersions which are frequently, both in pulpit and print, unjustly cast upon them. Printed in London, Anno 1646.

L IT is lawful for a Christian to be a magistrate or civil officer; and also it is lawful to take an oath, so it be in truth, and in judgment, and in righteousness, for confirmation of truth, and ending of all strife; and that by wrath and vain oaths the Lord is provoked and this land mourns.

Acts 8:38, 10:1,2,35; Rom.16:23; Deut.6:13; Rom.1:9; 2 Cor. 10:11; Jer.4:2; Heb.6:16.

The First London Baptist Confession 1644/46 

The reason we need to confess our faith

October 7, 2013 1 comment

Spurgeon 3But why is confession so necessary to prove true faith? I answer that it is necessary to the very existence of the Church of God; for, if I may be a believer, and never confess my faith, you may be a believer, and never confess your faith, and all round we should thus have a company of men believing, and none of them confessing; and where would be the outward ordinances of the Church of Christ at all? Where would be any minister? Where would be the setting up and growing of the kingdom of Christ? For a hundred reasons, it is absolutely needful for Christ’s kingdom that the believer should openly confess his faith. Do you not see that? And hence baptism, being God’s way of our openly confessing our faith, he requires it to be added to faith, that the faith may be a confessing faith, not a cowardly faith; that the faith may be an open faith, not a private faith; that so the faith may be a working faith, influencing our life, and the life of others, and not a mere secret attempt for self-salvation by a silent faith which dares not own Christ. Remember those words of the Lord Jesus, “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me” (and in that place it means, “he who does not confess me”) “before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.” There is, therefore, no regenerating efficacy about water, or about immersion, or about baptism in any shape or form; but it is needful as the outward visible expression of the inward spiritual faith by which the soul is saved.

Charles H. Spurgeon-Baptism Essential to Obedience-Metropolitan Tabernacle-Lord’s Evening-Oct. 13, 1889

Those who fall away never professed true faith

January 2, 2013 1 comment

Uniting with the Church however, important as this act may be, is any easy matter. It is but the beginning of the Christian life. Next comes the period of trial. Will all who join the Churches, bear the test to which sooner or later, they will most surely be subjected. Remember also that the period which is to try the strength of their faith, patience, obedience, and fidelity, extends through their whole life upon earth. With these facts before you, survey the scene which I will now sketch, as it passes. For one, the seductions of sense, ere long, prove too mighty; he yields; lives after the flesh, and dies. Another, carried away by the fascinations of the world,―wealth, ambition, honor, pleasure―is found sowing to the flesh; he reaps corruption. Then the righteous man―he who had been eminent for zeal, and good works, foremost in the sacred ranks, is overthrown, turns away from his righteousness, commits iniquity, and miserably perish! A succession of similar events continues. Their profession when tested, prove unequal to the trial! They have fallen; and are probably lost forever. Behold the picture. Is it imaginary? Alas! far from it. Do these facts, however, prove that the persons in question have “lost their faith, and regeneration?” Surely not. The facts all concur to demonstrate that they never possessed these high endowments. True they professed religion. But the indubitable evidence of a man’s faith and regeneration” is, not alone that he has been excited, and experienced fears and sorrows, and confidence and raptures; nor that he does many righteous acts, and is lauded as eminently devoted; but it is that he sustains the tests to which he is subjected in the christian profession. The “refiners fire” consumes the dross only; the pure gold all remains, and is by the process, rendered but the finer, and the brighter. Can it be proved that these men who have fallen, although they previously maintained the character of great piety, were ever rally regenerated? Never. Such proof is impossible, as long as men can appear to be what they are not. Then their fall is very far from showing that the doctrine of the final perseverance of the saints is not true.

R. B. C. Howell—Perseverance of the Saints