Doctrine

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A Sunday School presentation on the role of doctrine

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Doctrine

  1. 1. Doctrine<br />
  2. 2. Three sample doctrines<br />The Trinity<br />The deity of Christ <br />Salvation by faith alone<br />Calvinism<br />The inerrancy of Scripture<br />Dispensationalism<br />Nature <br />of God<br />Nature of <br />salvation<br />Nature <br />of Bible<br />
  3. 3. Doctrine vs. Scripture<br />Scripture: God’s thoughts using God’s words<br />Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may know the things freely given to us by God, which things we also speak, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, combining spiritual thoughts with spiritual words. 1 Cor 2:12-13<br />Doctrine: Scriptural ideas using human words<br />Examples: “Trinity”, “Inerrancy of Scripture” not found in the Bible itself<br />
  4. 4. Doctrine vs. Scripture<br />Why do we need doctrine?<br />Why not just use Scripture’s words?<br />Doctrine serves four key functions:<br />It summarizes<br />It harmonizes<br />It corrects errors<br />It provides a system<br />For teaching<br />For interpretation<br />
  5. 5. Doctrine vs. Scripture<br />How authoritative is doctrine?<br />It is based on Scripture<br />It is the product of much investigation<br />We shouldn’t decide to reinvent the wheel lightly<br />Not all doctrines are created equal<br />Some are more central than others<br />Some are better established than others<br />However<br />Only Scripture’s words are inerrant<br />Scripture does not present a harmonized account<br />Scripture does not contradict itself …<br />… but the human writers didn’t have to know how to reconcile it<br />
  6. 6. Doctrine vs. Scripture<br />Doctrine wraps Scriptural ideas into a tidy package<br />The value of having a box to put ideas in<br />Having to rebuild a box occasionally<br />
  7. 7. The progress of doctrine<br />Doctrine developed historically<br />Roman Catholic heresies<br />Attack on the Bible<br />Arian heresy<br />Nature <br />of God<br />Nature of <br />salvation<br />Nature <br />of Bible<br />33 AD<br />400 AD<br />1500 AD<br />1900 AD<br />
  8. 8. The progress of doctrine<br />Doctrine developed historically<br />Recall: Scripture does not contradict itself, but the human writers didn’t have to know how to reconcile it<br />Nature of Bible not always clearly understood<br />Nature of salvation not always clearly understood<br />Nature of God not always clearly understood<br />Nature <br />of God<br />Nature of <br />salvation<br />Nature <br />of Bible<br />33 AD<br />400 AD<br />1500 AD<br />1900 AD<br />
  9. 9. The progress of doctrine<br />Doctrine developed historically<br />… until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God (Eph 4:13)<br />Recall: Scripture does not contradict itself, but the human writers didn’t have to know how to reconcile it<br />Scripture contains all the data<br />It takes hundreds of years to work out the consequences of the Scriptural statements<br />What is yet to come?<br />Nature <br />of God<br />Nature of <br />salvation<br />Nature <br />of Bible<br />33 AD<br />400 AD<br />1500 AD<br />1900 AD<br />
  10. 10. The progress of doctrine<br />What are we to make of heretical statements in the early church?<br />We are accountable for the light we’ve been given<br />If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin. John 15:22<br />From everyone who has been given much, much will be required; and to whom they entrusted much, of him they will ask all the more. Luke 12:48<br />If we don’t know the truth clearly, we can trust God to judge our hearts fairly.<br />If we know the truth clearly and reject it, we will be held accountable.<br />
  11. 11. Challenges to orthodox doctrine<br />Since doctrine is not inerrant, we must expect that it will occasionally be wrong<br />… but probably not often!<br />
  12. 12. Challenges to orthodox doctrine<br />Three reasons for doctrinal error<br />Don’t know the doctrine<br />Don’t realize the importance of the doctrine<br />Deliberately oppose the doctrine<br />
  13. 13. Challenges to orthodox doctrine<br />Two reasonable responses when someone challenges a doctrine<br />“That is counter to standard doctrine. I am not going to listen to it. I will warn others that it is not standard doctrine.”<br />“That is counter to standard doctrine. I am going to investigate it Biblically. If it is not Biblical, I will warn others that it is counter to Scripture.”<br />One unreasonable (but common) response<br />“That is counter to standard doctrine. I am not going to listen to it or investigate it. I will warn others that it is counter to Scripture.”<br />
  14. 14. Deliberately challenging doctrine<br />Recall: <br />Scriptural truth in human words<br />Summarize<br />Harmonize<br />Correct errors<br />Systematize<br /><ul><li>Types of challenges
  15. 15. Reintroduce an idea formerly rejected by the church as an error
  16. 16. Improve the wording
  17. 17. Reject minor details while accepting the intent
  18. 18. Reconsider the central question
  19. 19. Offer a different way of resolving the issue
  20. 20. Reframe the question
  21. 21. Insist on retaining the paradox</li>

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