Apologetics may be simply defined as the defense of the Christian faith. The word "apologetics" derives from the Greek word apologia, which was originally used as a speech of defense.

Salvation Test?

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    Salvation Test?

    I am having an offline discussion/debate and I am seeking other opinions.

    What biblical truths, if not believed by an individual, would be 100% proof (not just reason to question) that a person is not a Christian (exclude the belief that Christ is God and Jesus died and is alive). Scripture verses always a plus.

    Examples from my offline discussion of opinions a Christian cannot possibly have:
    1) Does not believe the story of Jonah and the big fish is true
    2) Does not believe Mary had a virgin birth is true
    3) others ??

    (Ignorance of a biblical fact should not be considered .. i.e. the person doesn't know of the story of Jonah)
    Last edited by Fastfredy0; 04-10-2018, 08:16 AM.

    #2
    To answer this you would have to consider how long the person has been a Christian. A person who has just been saved but has no background of Bible training might not believe the story of Jonah or of the vigin birth simply because he has never heard of either one. The gosple message is that Jesus died and rose from the dead, so I suspect that anyone who didn't believe in his resurrection could not really be saved. That seems to me to be the only truth whose rejection would prove that someone is not a Christian.
    Clyde Herrin's Blog

    Comment


    • Fastfredy0
      Fastfredy0 commented
      Editing a comment
      I amended the question by adding:
      Ignorance of a biblical fact should not be considered .. i.e. the person doesn't know of the story of Jonah

    #3
    John 3:16-21 NASB
    16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. 18 He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19 This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil. 20 For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. 21 But he who practices the truth comes to the Light, so that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God.”


    Romans 10:8-11 NASB
    8 But what does it say? “THE WORD IS NEAR YOU, IN YOUR MOUTH AND IN YOUR HEART”—that is, the word of faith which we are preaching, 9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; 10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, “WHOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED.”


    Ephesians 2:1-10
    1 And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, 2 in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. 3 Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, [fn]indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. 4 But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, 5 even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), 6 and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9 not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.


    From what scripture says about what it means to be saved, I don’t see any theology ‘shibboleth’ that can be used to prove a person is not a Christian.
    Why could a Christian not believe that all scripture was written by men with Jonah as an ancient allegory and Mary’s ‘virgin birth’ a Christian myth from a later tradition inserted into the historic account that Jesus really was sent by God and he really did rise from the dead?

    They would be wrong, but these verses do not speak of an Orthodoxy Test for God’s Grace.

    Comment


      #4
      Mark 16:
      These signs shall follow them that believe...

      Comment


        #5
        Originally posted by Fastfredy0 View Post
        What biblical truths, if not believed by an individual, would be 100% proof (not just reason to question) that a person is not a Christian (exclude the belief that Christ is God and Jesus died and is alive). Scripture verses always a plus.
        Our Belief - Christforums

        This is my personal observation. Concerning biblical truths, the Scriptural truths found in the Ecumenical Creeds are a good place to begin. Note, people may not necessarily know these, but they cannot altogether stand against these truths conveyed from Scripture. There's a big difference between holding to an unorthodox understanding which may not be explored yet as it may be a simple preconceived notion or belief rather than heresy.

        Christian is a term first used in Antioch, it was meant to be a derogatory term. Simply being a "follower of Christ" or Christian can umbrella over someone like Judas which physically followed Jesus and was a disciple. I personally think Christian can apply to unbelievers that are just beginning as "learners of Jesus". Christian applies to children which are learning about God, but haven't matured in knowledge. Christian can also apply to denominations, but then again, it applies to cultist etc.

        With such a wide or broad definition of Christian I don't try to figure out who is or isn't Christian. A born again Christian is another topic altogether, I may know them by their fruits, but I cannot see inside a person. I think the ultimate test of who truly is a "saved Christian" shall be evidenced on the last day. The saints shall persevere.

        God bless,
        William

        Comment


        • Fastfredy0
          Fastfredy0 commented
          Editing a comment
          Well, assuming the person is honest ... if he says he doesn't believe in God I know (IMO) he is not a Christian. Similarly, if he says Jesus is not God or Jesus is still dead, then I know he is not a Christian.

          The question concerns whether or not there are any others beliefs/disbeliefs that would mean a person could not possibly be a Christian. In my debate my opponent said that not believing the story of Jonah would be proof positive that the person was not a Christian. I disagree.

        #6
        I doubt this will answer your question or even come close. I can tell if a person is a true believer in a just a few minuets of conversation with a person. I hope this helps in some very small way. If someone really loves the Lord Jesus and is genuinely saved, asking them if they are willing to die rather than deny the Lord, if such an occasion should happen would they die?

        Comment


        • Just Mike
          Just Mike commented
          Editing a comment
          Freddy, I am sure I would have said everything as they did. Maybe I would have run and hide. Those men walked with Jesus and failed Him, I am far less of a believer.

        • Fastfredy0
          Fastfredy0 commented
          Editing a comment
          I may have run too. Luckily, God looks at me using the imputed righteousness of Christ. What a "sweet deal".

        • Just Mike
          Just Mike commented
          Editing a comment
          Freddy, Oh my what would we do if the Father did not see us as righteous? I am so awestruck that Jesus loves me, such an undeserving wretch I am!

        #7
        Originally posted by Just Mike View Post
        If someone really loves the Lord Jesus and is genuinely saved, asking them if they are willing to die rather than deny the Lord, if such an occasion should happen would they die?
        Many people think they would be willing to die but fail when the occassion arises. A genuine believer might not be sure he would be willing to die. You can't judge the salvation of a person by what he says he would do.
        Clyde Herrin's Blog

        Comment


        • Just Mike
          Just Mike commented
          Editing a comment
          How many say they would die for Jesus, but just don't ask them to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I have seldom run across a person that told me to shut up when talking about how many times God has healed me, and how I am so blessed by Jesus Christ.

          I can't remember anyone telling me they did not want me to pray with them, no matter where we were. Recently I was in a waiting room, and also in a RAM truck dealers show room, I prayed for a sales man had sold no cars that month. I prayed for him and he later told me his sales improved that day. Now this gives me a time to share Christ with him next time I see him.

          I lobe praying for people and telling how God has healed me somany times. This gives me a great opportunity to share Jesus.

        #8
        Originally posted by Just Mike View Post
        I doubt this will answer your question or even come close. I can tell if a person is a true believer in a just a few minuets of conversation with a person. I hope this helps in some very small way. If someone really loves the Lord Jesus and is genuinely saved, asking them if they are willing to die rather than deny the Lord, if such an occasion should happen would they die?
        I'm reminded of Peter

        "Jesus said to him, "Assuredly, I say to you that this night, before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times. Peter said to Him, "Even if I have to die with You, I will not deny You!" And so said all the disciples." (Mat 26:34-35 NKJ)

        Compare that with what actually happened?

        Now Peter sat outside in the courtyard. And a servant girl came to him, saying, "You also were with Jesus of Galilee." But he denied it before them all, saying, "I do not know what you are saying." And when he had gone out to the gateway, another girl saw him and said to those who were there, "This fellow also was with Jesus of Nazareth." But again he denied with an oath, "I do not know the Man!" And a little later those who stood by came up and said to Peter, "Surely you also are one of them, for your speech betrays you." Then he began to curse and swear, saying, "I do not know the Man!" Immediately a rooster crowed. And Peter remembered the word of Jesus who had said to him, "Before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times." So he went out and wept bitterly. (Mat 26:69-75 NKJ)

        Many believer's have upon fear of death recanted or denied knowing Jesus - men like Cranmer for example!

        And many have spoken bold words of faith, and then fallen away from the faith.

        Why not let the bible show us to tell if a person appears to be a genuine christian, and remember that is as far as we can go - a person's salvation is ultimately a matter between them and God and not for us to confirm or deny. However scripture says, 'by your fruits their shall know them' (matt 7:20) - a few minutes conversation is never enough - if we want to know if a person is converted we look for a life of convertedness!

        Comment


        • atpollard
          atpollard commented
          Editing a comment
          But a few minutes is often enough to raise suspicions that THIS sheep may be a goat.

        #9
        Originally posted by reformed baptist View Post

        I'm reminded of Peter

        "Jesus said to him, "Assuredly, I say to you that this night, before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times. Peter said to Him, "Even if I have to die with You, I will not deny You!" And so said all the disciples." (Mat 26:34-35 NKJ)

        Compare that with what actually happened?

        Now Peter sat outside in the courtyard. And a servant girl came to him, saying, "You also were with Jesus of Galilee." But he denied it before them all, saying, "I do not know what you are saying." And when he had gone out to the gateway, another girl saw him and said to those who were there, "This fellow also was with Jesus of Nazareth." But again he denied with an oath, "I do not know the Man!" And a little later those who stood by came up and said to Peter, "Surely you also are one of them, for your speech betrays you." Then he began to curse and swear, saying, "I do not know the Man!" Immediately a rooster crowed. And Peter remembered the word of Jesus who had said to him, "Before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times." So he went out and wept bitterly. (Mat 26:69-75 NKJ)

        Many believer's have upon fear of death recanted or denied knowing Jesus - men like Cranmer for example!

        And many have spoken bold words of faith, and then fallen away from the faith.

        Why not let the bible show us to tell if a person appears to be a genuine christian, and remember that is as far as we can go - a person's salvation is ultimately a matter between them and God and not for us to confirm or deny. However scripture says, 'by your fruits their shall know them' (matt 7:20) - a few minutes conversation is never enough - if we want to know if a person is converted we look for a life of convertedness!
        I live very close to a lake that has more shore line that the state of California. So people here, especially those who live and work here are friendly, their living depends on being that way. For me it takes but being around a person a short time to know a lot about a person. Hows their talk, dress, looks and what they are drinking tells me a lot. If I get a 10 minuets with a person I can tell you most generally have a very good idea if they are a Christian. Starting with either are you a Follower of Jesus Christ? I am kind, respectful, but ofter bold. I have never been attacked or cussed at when asking these questions. Oh I have never been pushed off a dock either. LOL.

        Comment


        • reformed baptist
          reformed baptist commented
          Editing a comment
          I still don't read the bible telling me i will know a believer after 10 minutes of conversation.

        #10
        Reformed Baptist. Its not fool prof but we do have the Holy Spirits help in knowing what to say.

        Comment


          #11
          Originally posted by reformed baptist View Post
          I'm reminded of Peter

          "Jesus said to him, "Assuredly, I say to you that this night, before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times. Peter said to Him, "Even if I have to die with You, I will not deny You!" And so said all the disciples." (Mat 26:34-35 NKJ)

          Compare that with what actually happened?

          Now Peter sat outside in the courtyard. And a servant girl came to him, saying, "You also were with Jesus of Galilee." But he denied it before them all, saying, "I do not know what you are saying." And when he had gone out to the gateway, another girl saw him and said to those who were there, "This fellow also was with Jesus of Nazareth." But again he denied with an oath, "I do not know the Man!" And a little later those who stood by came up and said to Peter, "Surely you also are one of them, for your speech betrays you." Then he began to curse and swear, saying, "I do not know the Man!" Immediately a rooster crowed. And Peter remembered the word of Jesus who had said to him, "Before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times." So he went out and wept bitterly. (Mat 26:69-75 NKJ)
          Peter gets too harsh a criticism for that. Peter actually made good on that promise to die with Jesus. One does not attack a squad of Roman Soldiers with a sword and expect to walk away from the encounter. Peter WAS ready to kill and die to defend Jesus from a hopelessly superior military force. Jesus rebuked him for it. So by the time the servant girl came around, Peter was exhausted, confused and having a really bad day. Most of the other Apostles had already gone into hiding.

          Comment


          • reformed baptist
            reformed baptist commented
            Editing a comment
            Who says Roman Soldiers were present - John 18:3 mentions a detachment of soldiers but that could have been some sort of temple guard - I see no evidence of Roman Involvement in the death of Jesus until the following morning when the high Priest hands Jesus over to Pilate - however that being said I agree Peter does get a hard time for his actions on that evening and that kind of illustrates my point in those sort of situations we are likely to behave out of character and we would do well to note that - in the comfort of my study it is easy for me to say 'I would die for Jesus' but if I had been all through that peter went through that night would I do what he did - probably!

          • atpollard
            atpollard commented
            Editing a comment
            John 18:3 NASB Judas then, having received the Roman cohort and officers from the chief priests and the Pharisees, came there with lanterns and torches and weapons.

            Personal bias based on the translation I happened to read.
            Looking up the actual word, it could go either way. It originally meant part of a Roman Legion, but was adopted to also refer to local Auxiliaries. So either Roman Troops or Temple Guard could have been intended. I leave it to people who actually read Greek to split that hair (if even they can).

          • reformed baptist
            reformed baptist commented
            Editing a comment
            I believe the NASB to be in error here for the reason already stated - there doesn't appear to Roman involvement till the next day - but it isn't a biggy - and I agree with the general point you were making :d
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