Which Christian doctrines are necessary for salvation? Last night, I made a post about my perspective concerning where to draw the line concerning Christian doctrine as it pertains to salvation.
I stated that Jesus is the line. Period. We put our faith in Him and continue in this faith.
We like to add to this our favored doctrines, and when we do, we are creating an unjust line that will lead to a building that is out of whack.
I think my statement might cause some to worry that I had conceded to a “faith plus nothing” mindset.
I have not.
A building with nothing more than a measuring line is not a building. As James stated, “faith without works is dead being alone.”
Paul the Apostle also said, “take heed what you build.”
Jesus is the measure by which all else is built. As we see concerning New Jerusalem, the foundations also include the 12 Apostles. The teachings of Jesus and His Apostles are critical. So, if we have faith in Jesus, we will also learn what He and His Apostles said concerning Him.
Many have built in the name of Jesus and much has gone astray. I will not back down from that. However, it is also written that “a foolish woman tears down her house and a wise woman builds it up.”
As the faithful church, of which we all are who trust in Jesus, we should build.
What are we building?
We are building up individual Christians after the likeness of Christ—many Christians who make up that Holy City, New Jerusalem.
However, we do so by putting Jesus first knowing this: He is the measuring line. He and His Apostles provided the foundation and though we are participants in His work, He alone will finish the work. He is the Alpha and the Omega. The Beginning and the Ending. When He returns, we will see this kingdom. There will be a competing kingdom that comes first—and is now already in some form and has always been in some form. “The beast that was and is not and yet is.”
As Christians, we should do what we can to build the Lord’s Kingdom, but we do so in humility knowing that the end work will not be completed until He returns. However, we build in faith, looking to Jesus: The beginning and ending of our faith.
Much has been built in the name of Jesus but not with Jesus as the central focus point.
When we put our favored doctrines, pastors, denominations, and the like as our center or as part of our center, our building is not one that looks like Christ—but one that is more like our favored doctrines, pastors, and denominations. There are many such constructs. These will be “removed out of their place” because they are not building in faith—trusting in Jesus to build—but they instead out of a lack of faith took it upon themselves to build according to their own understanding.
When Jesus returns, we will all face things we got wrong. He will judge the works done in His Name and we look to Him for grace as one who says, “I am an unprofitable servant. I did that which was my duty to do.”
However, we should strive to be faithful to our works done in His Name. It is also true that we can learn much about His judgements if we are of a truth trusting in Him and putting Him first. I do believe He is revealing things in our time so that we can strengthen ourselves as those who wait for Jesus. As things stand now, we are at risk of deception from the false prophet because we do not properly trust in Jesus. We trust in man.
So, there is much to do—with faith that Jesus will cause us to do it—and when He returns, He will repair all that went astray. He will judge graciously to those whose faith in Him leads to a faithful life in Christ. He will judge with great wrath for those who did not.
The letters to the Churches and the book of Revelation in entirety along with all the writings of the Apostles provide great insight into His judgments. If we have faith in Him, we should consider. Trust in His mercy and grace, but also trust that He is not to be trifled with and all the works done under His Name but not in His Name will come down.
If you want to fault me for doing my upmost to use the talents the Lord gave me faithfully as one who wants to have a hand in building His Kingdom, then what can I say?
I am not building the Kingdom of this world and leading people into that place of death. I’m calling people out of it, as are many, because this is a big world and us small people only have a small role. However, we should want our small role to be as perfect as possible while trusting in Jesus to lead the way and to weigh our work with grace.
Since I want grace, I think the gracious position is to say that the only doctrine that is needed for salvation is to put your faith in Jesus and continue in this faith.
It is true that continuing in this faith means much, but He will cause these things to take place so we trust in Him. We do not “make lies our refuge and under falsehoods hide ourselves” thinking that we know it all because we trusted in our religious authorities who have by and large “made their covenant with death and with hell are they in agreement.” These who say, “when the overwhelming scourge shall pass through it will not come to us.” “I sit a queen and am no widow and shall see no sorrow.”
I know there are some who say this of me. There are some who have compared me and my work to the villainous women in the scriptures. I say this so you can judge for yourself. Who considers that they might be the villain? I have. I always do. I know that I can be removed at any time and I know that deception is called deception for a reason.
However, I also see the Lord’s work in my heart and in my life, so I trust in Him. Weigh my work for yourself. I do what I can to judge my work along the way, but I cannot judge it in the ultimate sense. Jesus will, and I look to Him for gracious judgment for all of us who trust in Him.
Those who trust in Him will not be desolate, as the scriptures say. I will do my best to inspire trust, but also fear. God is to be feared. Our work in His Name matters. Fear Him. He gives mercy to those who fear Him and grace to the humble. “Take heed what you build” and I will do the same.