Answers to "Do you know the basics of the Christian faith?"
by Matt Slick
You don't need to have the scripture verses memorized, and this list isn't authoritative. So, if you don't know everything, that's alright. But, these are the basics in Christianity and Christians should, at the very least, be familiar with them.
- Can you tell someone what the Great Commission is?"
- And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying,"All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19"Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age," (Matt. 28:18-20).
- Can you tell someone what the gospel is?"
- Now I make known to you, brethren, the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received, in which also you stand, 2by which also you are saved, if you hold fast the word which I preached to you, unless you believed in vain. 3For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures," (1 Cor. 15:1-4)
- Can you tell someone where in the Bible the gospel is defined?
- See above.
- How many ways are there to get to God?
- Only one: "Jesus *said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me," (John 14:6).
- Can you quote John 3:16?
- "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life," (John 3:16).
- What book and chapter of the Bible has the 10 Commandments?
- Exodus 20
- What is the basic salvation message?
- The basic salvation message is that Jesus died on the cross for our sins and rose from the dead (1 Cor. 15:1-4). All who would believe in Him will have everlasting life and escape the judgment of God upon those who have sinned against Him (John 3:16-18). Receiving salvation from God is done by faith (Rom. 5:1; Eph. 2:8). Also, by receiving Christ, people are enabled to repent of their sins.
- Must you be baptized in order to be saved?
- No, you don't have to be baptized to be saved (Rom. 5:1; Acts 10:44-48). See "Is Baptism necessary for Salvation?" for more information on this.
- Is salvation obtained by being good, by faith in Jesus alone, or both?
- Salvation is a gift (Rom. 6:23) that cannot be earned. We are justified by faith (Rom. 5:1) apart from the works of the Law (Rom. 3:28).
- Can you define the term justification?
- To be justified is to be made righteous. It is a divine act where God declares the sinner to be innocent of his sins. It is not that the sinner is now sinless, but that he is "declared" sinless. This justification is based on the shed blood of Jesus, "...having now been justified by His blood..." (Rom. 5:9).
- Can you define the term sanctification?
- Sanctification follows justification. In justification our sins are completely forgiven in Christ. Sanctification is the process by which the Holy Spirit makes us more like Christ in all that we do, think, and desire.
- Can you tell someone the difference between Mormonism and Christianity?
- Mormonism teaches that God used to be a man on another world. He became a god and brought one of his wives to this world. They produce spirit offspring who enter human babies at birth. Mormons believe they have the potential of becoming gods of their own worlds. Christianity teaches that there is only one God in all existence (who was never a man on a planet). God exists as a Trinity: Father, Son, Holy Spirit. Jesus is the word made flesh (John 1:1,14) and we cannot become gods.
- Can you quote scripture and location that says we are saved by grace?
- Eph. 2:8, "For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God."
- Can you quote scripture and location that says there is only one God?
- "...Before Me there was no God formed, and there will be none after Me," (Isaiah 43:10). See also Isaiah 44:6,8.
- Is Jesus God in flesh, a good man, or an angel who became a man?
- Jesus is God in flesh. Col. 2:9 says, "For in Him all the fulness of Deity dwells in bodily form." John 1:1,14 says, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God...And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth." Jesus is still a man (1 Tim. 2:5).
- Did Jesus rise from the dead in a physical body or not?
- Jesus rose from the dead in the same body He died in, though it was a glorified body. "Jesus answered and said to them, "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up." 20The Jews therefore said, "It took forty-six years to build this temple, and will You raise it up in three days?" 21But He was speaking of the temple of His body." (John 2:19-21) And, "So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown a perishable body, it is raised an imperishable body; 43it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power; 44it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body," (1 Cor. 15:42-44).
- How many natures does Jesus have?
- Two. Jesus is both God and man. Col. 2:9 says, "For in Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form."
- Is the Holy Spirit a person like the Father and Son, or a force like radar?
- The Holy Spirit is a person like the Father and the Son. He speaks (Acts 8:29; 13:2), has a will (1 Cor. 12:11), loves, and can be grieved (Eph. 4:30).
- Can you explain what the Trinity is?
- The Trinity is the teaching that God exists in three eternal, simultaneous, co-equal, distinct persons known as the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
- Has God always been God?
- Yes, God has always been God. Psalm 90:2 says, "Before the mountains were born, or Thou didst give birth to the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, Thou art God."
- Can you tell anyone what some of the attributes of God are?
- He knows all things (1 John 3:20). He is all powerful (Jer. 32:17,27). He is everywhere (Psalm 139:7-12). He is holy (Isaiah 6:3; Rev. 4:8).
- Is Jesus going to return or not?
- Yes, Jesus is going to return. Acts 1:10-11 says, "And as they were gazing intently into the sky while He was departing, behold, two men in white clothing stood beside them; 11and they also said, "Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into the sky? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in just the same way as you have watched Him go into heaven."
- Did Jesus bare our sins in His body on the cross or not?
- "and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed," (1 Peter 2:24).
- What is salvation?
- Salvation is the "saving" of a sinner from the righteous judgment of God. When someone appeals to God and seeks forgiveness in Jesus, his sins are forgiven. He is cleansed. His relationship with God is restored, and he is made a new creature (2 Cor. 5:17). All of this is the work of God, not man. Salvation is a free gift (Rom. 6:23).
- What is sin?
- Sin is anything that is contrary to the law or will of God. For example: if you lie, you have sinned. Why? Because God has said not to lie (Exodus 20:16). If you do what God has forbidden, then you have sinned. In addition, if you do not do what God has commanded, you sin (James 4:17).
- What is damnation?
- The righteous judgment of God upon a sinner where the sinner is cast out of the presence of God into Hell for ever. (Matt. 25:46; 2 Thess. 1:9).
- What is hell?
- Hell is the future place of eternal punishment of the damned including the devil and his fallen angels. See Matt. 11:23; 16:18; Acts 11:27; 1 Cor. 15:55; Rev. 1:18; 6:8).
- What is heaven?
- Heaven is the dwelling place of God and for those who go there a place of everlasting bliss. See Matt. 23:34-37; Luke 10:20; and Rev. 22:2,20-27.
- Is the Bible inspired or is it a good book full of good moral stories?
- The Bible is inspired and inerrant in the original documents. See 2 Tim. 3:16.
- What are the first five books of the Old Testament?
- Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy.
- How many books are in the Bible?
- There are 66 books in the Bible: 39 books in the OT, 27 in the NT. (Note: 3x9=27)
- Were Adam and Eve real people or not?
- Yes, they were real individuals (Gen. 2-3)
- What is the biblical reason that Adam and Eve were cast out of the Garden of Eden?
- They disobeyed God by eating of the forbidden fruit (Gen. 3).
- Is Satan a real being?
- Yes, he is a real being, a fallen angel. "But Michael the archangel, when he disputed with the devil and argued about the body of Moses, did not dare pronounce against him a railing judgment, but said, "The Lord rebuke you," (Jude 9). (see also Rev. 12:9)
- What are some of the qualifications of an elder?
- Must be above reproach (Titus 1:6; 1 Tim. 3:2), the husband of one wife (Titus 1:6; 1 Tim. 3:2). His household must be in order with children who believe (Titus 1:6 ;1 Tim. 3:4), have a good reputation (1 Tim. 3:7), be able to exhort (teach) sound doctrine (Titus 1:9; 1 Tim. 3:2), and be able to refute false teaching (Titus 1:9).
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