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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Foundations, Part II

This is a revision of a post from a year ago. I pray you will consider carefully your own apologetic. ~ Love, Anne

(My Bible—click to enlarge)

But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.
~ 1 Peter 3:15 (NKJV)

Foundations, Part II

Christians face dangerous attacks to truth, some of which will be addressed on Friday. The best way to recognize a lie is to be certain of the truth. I present here what I consider to be non-negotiable truths foundational to Christian faith.

The Apostle's Creed affirms:

I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ His only Son our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried; on the third day He rose from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty, from thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, one holy catholic* church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting.

The Five Solas of the Reformation were five non-negotiable principles of believers who obtained access to the Scriptures and came to be known as Protestants when they separated themselves from the Roman Catholic Church (not the same as *catholic, or one universal church). Those principles are:

Sola Scriptura — Authority of Scripture Alone:
The Scriptures are the infallible Word of God, revealing His Person, precepts, and promises to mankind. They are the first and the final authority for matters of faith—and all truth.

Soli Deo Gloria! — For God's Glory Alone:
God is sovereign over every aspect of a believer's life. The Westminster Shorter Catechism declares, "What is the chief end of man? Man's chief end is to glorify God and to enjoy him forever." The believer lives under the Lordship of Christ, for God’s glory and mankind's delight.

Solo Christo! — By Christ Alone:
Christ is fully God and fully man, and is the sole Mediator between God and man. Salvation is by Christ's work alone, through His shed blood, finished at Calvary.

Sola Gratia — Salvation by Grace Alone:
Salvation is by grace through faith. Our righteous standing before God is imputed by grace as God's gift to us, who are without self-merit.

Sola Fide — Justification by Faith Alone:
Our justification is by faith alone, apart from human works, though our faith is not without works. Faith is our cooperative role in God's work.

I affirm these beliefs as definitive of Christianity. I also believe:

• Each person is made in the image of God, able to discern between moral right and wrong, and is separated from God by both the sin of Adam as well as by the individual’s own sin.

• Those reconciled to God through Christ's blood are born into eternal life, and as members of Christ's Church comprise His physical Body on earth of which He is Head. Believers celebrate this relationship in the Lord’s Table. Jesus also instructs believers to bear witness of their faith in Him through public baptism. Both ordinances are of great importance, but neither is necessary for salvation.

• God's divine Holy Spirit lives within Christians and empowers God’s work in and through them. The fruit of the Holy Spirit is evidence of His saving presence in a believer's life, and is distinct from the gifts of the Holy Spirit, each of which is given to individuals differently—and therefore not requisite testimony to salvation. The primary component of the Spirit’s fruit is love, which is necessary to the Christian life, and is expressed first toward God and then toward fellow man.

There is infinitely more to faith. This is my collection of the truths which should define and unite Christians.

Would you add or subtract anything?

Your feedback is appreciated. Post to "Comments" or e-mail to Copyright 2009, 2010 Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.


  1. Wonderful! I got the chills reading the entire post. Thank you Anne for such clarity.

  2. This is great, bless you sis.

  3. I love that Jesus is fully God and fully man. I don't know about subtracting it, but I know I sure have a lot of questions about the word discern in your first bullet point regarding someone I know in particular and issues surrounded them.

    Love you.
    ~ Wendy

  4. Foundations are so important. Isn't amazing how few Christians actually know what they believe?


  5. A very nice summary. You write that the fruit of the spirit is love, "first toward God and then toward fellow man." I believe that scripture strongly supports that one cannot exist without the other, so one cannot come before the other. If we are living in God's will, both coexist side-by-side. I am not making man equal to God; it is important that we love others in the context of scripture and God's commands. Jesus said that how we treat others is how we treat Him.

  6. T ~ This gives me chills too, when I think of how much this all means to me. I appreciate that you found clarity in it.

    Denise ~ Thank you! Blessings backatcha! :D

    Wendy ~ The Bible says we have a conscience. Even a baby understands right and wrong if they look at us to see if we're watching before they do what they know they shouldn't.

    David ~ My prayer is that we'll understand what we're willing to die for—and what's not worth division.

  7. Russell ~

    Your point is a good one. I'll have to go back and clarify this. I was thinking of the priority of loving God first, and then neighbor, but not necessarily the order in which they occur.

    I do believe both kinds of love build upon each other. I'm not yet sure if I see a chronology.

    I'll think about it. You can be sure I'll ask the Lord about it as well. :D

  8. I am thrilled at the clarity of truths written here! Amen!

    Ditto for me!

  9. Anne,
    I appreciate your thoughts here...not sure if the chronology of love is splitting hairs, but when asked about the greatest command Jesus said "loving God with all your heart mind and soul" and the second was like it--"love your neighbor as yourself." No matter how you slice it, love is required period. I just wish I could practice more of it.


  10. I just now realized I didn't respond to comments here. Boy am I late!

    Bible Lover ~ Thank you for your affirmation, and for the word "clarity." :D

    Jeff ~ "No matter how you slice it, love is required period." PERFECT! Now why can't I be that succinct?


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