Baptist Articles of Faith: Teaching Nine
Introduction: The Baptist Articles of Faith should be reviewed from time to time, as suggested by passages like Titus 3:8. The Baptist documents are the Church Covenant and Baptist Articles of Faith. Today, we hope to discuss Articles 17 through 18.
Read Article 17: Of the Righteousness and the Wicked
Essentially, we believe that one is either righteous or wicked. The only way to be righteous, in God's sight, is to be justified through faith in Christ. Wickedness leads to condemnation and wrath. Impenitence means lack of penitence (i.e., sorrow over sin and desire to atone or amend).
Teaching Points –
- Malachi 3:18 supports the idea that there is a distinction between the righteous and wicked. Furthermore, one is either one or the other. Romans 1:17 supports the idea that righteousness comes by faith, not by works.
Let's make sure we are righteous by faith, as opposed to being wicked because of inadequate works of rejection of the gospel. Let's also strive to help our loved ones get righteous.
- I John 5:19 supports the idea that the world is under the control of the wicked one. We should not be surprised by wicked people acting wickedly. We must use what God has given us to add light to the darkness, salt to the decay, and righteousness to the wickedness. We go into it knowing that it is uphill, but God will bless our faithfulness.
In summary, we believe that one is either wicked or righteous. The difference is based on faith in Jesus, not our good works. The world is under the control of the wicked one.
Read Article 18: Of Christian Education
Essentially, we believe that education is of foundational importance to the Christian movement. Both general education and Christian education are essential.
Teaching Points –
- Matthew 28:19-20 supports the importance of teaching believers how to live by the Word of God. It will be difficult to teach the Word of God to people who cannot read or who do not have a basic body of knowledge with which to compare and contrast the teachings of God's Word with.
Let's be mindful of the foundational importance of teaching the Word of God and how general education is needed to undergird Christian education.
- Proverbs 10:14 supports the idea that wise people store up knowledge. We should never think that we get to a point that we don’t need any more knowledge. We should strive to have a healthy diet of both Christian education and general education. And then we should seek to use it for God's glory, wisdom.
- Titus 2:14; 3:8 support the idea that believers/churches should be busy doing and supporting good works. Education is a good work. We should work on supporting education through not only teaching, but also promotion, incentives, scholarships, and grants focused on education. We must promote the importance of education.
Especially our young people need to have educated and giving people as role models, instead of just athletes and rappers. We need to give young people some type of incentive for doing well in school. We need to give high school graduates and post secondary students scholarships.
And we need to give grants to institutions. Tithes and offerings, in addition to wise stewardship will take us a long ways in this area.
In summary, based on our articles of faith, we believe that Christian education, which is undergirded by general education, is of foundational importance. Therefore, we should support it, in a number of ways.
Conclusion: Let’s work on remembering, understanding, and living by our Baptist Articles of Faith. Let’s be mindful of righteousness by faith and Christian education.
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