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Page 244

 

If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine, whereunto thou hast attained.

- I Timothy 4:6

So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading.

- Nehemiah 8:8

 

  • Heresy - False doctrines; beliefs and teachings that contradict God's Word
  •  

    Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.

    - Titus 1:9

    Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits, whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.

    - John 4:1

    Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.

    - Jude: 3

     

    The church which clearly teaches the doctrines of God's Word is equipping its members to also confess and defend these truths. Why is this true?

    2. To instruct - The church is called to teach its baptized and confessing members the truths of the Bible. Church symbols compile, systematize, and summarize all scriptural references pertaining to a certain doctrine. As such, they serve as helpful, instructional tools for teaching others.

    3. To defend - The church is called to defend the truth from heresy, from error. The Bible's teachings are infallible, but man's teachings are not. Man's understanding and explanation of God's truth may be in error. When conflicting interpretations of Scripture arise, the church is required to carefully study Scripture and to distinguish and defend truth from falsehood. A carefully-written, scripturally-based creedal statement can serve as an effective tool to refute man-made error and establish God-given truth.



      Mark and Karl worked in the same office. During a lunch break, they entered into a discussion about church denominations.

      Karl stated the following, "Mark, I do not agree with your church. It believes in the words of man. You use catechisms and confessions. We do not believe in any creeds in our church; I only believe in the Word of God - the Bible."

      This statement deeply troubled Mark. He did not know how to answer Mark. Finally, he spoke with his minister about it. His minister helped Mark to understand the false logic in Karl's reasoning by pointing out the following factors:

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