Preparing for Baptism – Vitaliy Boyko

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Light of the Gospel Baptist Church

Preparing for Baptism

Essential Teachings of the Christian Faith and Ethics

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Doctrine about the Bible


Statement of Faith

The Word of God. We believe that the Bible, the canonical books of the Old (39 books) and the New (27 books) Testaments, is the inspired Word of God. It was written by men of God, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit (2Pet. 1:21; 2Tim. 3:16). Inspiration is the writing down of God’s revelation by men ofGod who were guided by the Holy Spirit. The Bible is the only inerrant and infallible source of truth and doctrine for the Christian faith (John 20:31; Rom. 10:17; 2Tim. 3:16). It provides the only true guidance in matters of salvation, life, and ministry (Josh. 1:7-8; 2Pet. 1:19; Rom. 15:4; Heb. 4:12).

The Bible is the complete written revelation of God to men; its central theme is the Word of God incarnate – Jesus Christ (John 5:39; 2Pet. 1:19; Heb. 1:1-2). Adding to, or subtracting from, the Word of God entails a strict punishment from God (Deut. 4:2; 12:32; Rev. 22:18-19).

Uniqueness of the Bible

What distinguishes the Bible from all other books on earth? Why is it so important for people? What is the reason that in many countries it is banned and destroyed?

The main difference of the Bible lies in its divine inspiration. This means that it is inspired by God Himself. Since God is the Creator and Supreme Judge of all people, His Word is of great importance to all of us. The Bible enlightens our hearts and changes people’s lives. This is the only Book through which you can receive salvation and eternal life for your soul. Therefore, it is so important, and for this reason it is persecuted.

Inspiration by God

“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, forcorrection, for instruction in righteousness” (2Tim. 3:16).

Biblical inspiration is a unique process when God through the Holy Spirit opened His truths to the authors of the Bible and kept them from inaccuracies and errors.

We can see Biblical Inspiration of God in two types.

  1. Direct revelation from the Holy Spirit. Usually the prophets wrote that way. They wrote what was openly revealed to them by the Lord. “Moreover, the Lord said to me, “Take a large scroll, and write on it with a man’s pen…” (Isaiah 8:1).
  2. Motivation from the Holy Spirit. The Lord inspired an author to write and helped him in this. The Holy Spirit guided the man in a special way by protecting him from mistakes and unnecessary words, and by sending thoughts that accurately convey the Truth. For example, the Evangelist Luke writes: “…It seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write to you an orderly account, most excellent Theophilus, 4 that you may know the certainty of those things in which you were instructed” (Luke 1:3-4).

How can biblical inspiration of God be proven?

The unity of the Bible books. The Bible consists of 66 books. They were written over 1600 years in different countries and in different languages. At the same time, they are united by one idea and do not contradict, but complement each other. This unity lies in the idea that exists in all the books of the Bible: “People constantly leave from God, but He continues to love them and wants to save through Jesus Christ, who took upon Himself their sins.”

Scientific accuracy. Thousands of years ago, the Bible proclaimed scientific facts that were recently discoveredby scientists. For example, “He stretches out the north over empty space; He hangs the earth on nothing” (Job26:7).

Prophetic accuracy. The prophet Micah almost 700 years before Christ’s birth predicted the place of his birth – Bethlehem (Micah 5:2). The Old Testament contains over 60 prophecies about Christ that were fulfilled during His life.

Biblical canon and apocrypha

The Biblical canon is a list of 66 books of the Bible that have been studied and accepted by the Church, that they are inspired by God.

What criteria were used for this? First, the authors of the books of the Bible were people who had direct contact with God, or who were in close contact with the apostles (Mark and Luke Evangelists). Secondly, their content had to fully correspond, and not contradict, the teachings of Jesus Christ, the apostles and Old Testament prophets. Second criteria would be a contain of a text. Which should not contradict, but complete teachings of Jesus Christ, disciples, and Old Testament Prophets.

Therefore, only the canonical books of the Bible can be the basis for our doctrines, used for edification in faith, quoted in sermons, and serve as a norm for behavior.

What is the Apocrypha? In Greek, the word apocryphos means “hidden.” This term is used for books of unknown or doubtful origin, because their inspiration is not confirmed by anything. Such fake messages began to appear in the time of the Apostle Paul: “…not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ hadcome” (2Thess. 2:2).

Important to remember

“All Scripture is given byinspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, forinstruction in righteousness.”2Tim. 3:16
Biblical inspiration is when God through the Holy Spirit opened His truths to the authors of the Bible and kept them from inaccuracies and errors.
The Biblical canon is a list of 66 books of the Bible that have been studied and accepted by the Church, that they are inspired by God.
Apocrypha is a term used for books of unknown or doubtful origin, because their inspiration is not confirmed.
3 steps of effective Bible Study:
1. Observation: what is written here?
2. Explanation: what is the meaning of this particular text?
3. Application: what does this mean for me personally?

How can you properly study Bible?

Regular reading of the Bible and meditation on the read 1) serves our spiritual growth, 2) strengthens in faith, 3) helps us to know the will of the Lord for our lives, and 4) keeps ourselves clean before God.

Three steps of effective Bible Study:

  1. Observation: what is written here?
  2. Explanation (interpretation): what is the meaning of this particular text?
  3. Application: what does this mean for me personally?

At the APPLICATION step, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Are there any examples for me here that need to be followed?
  2. Are there any warnings that need to be considered?
  3. Are there any commands from the Lord that need obedience?
  4. Are the sins indicated here to be left?
  5. Are there new truths about my own life here?

Important rules for studying the Bible

  1. When you read the Scriptures, apply this passage primarily to your life.
  2. First, you must obey the Word of God yourself, and only then you can teach it to others.
  3. God speaks to us through His Word. Therefore, pray before reading the Bible.
  4. If there are some verses that you do not understand, do not hesitate to ask for explanationfrom more experienced Christians or church ministers.
  5. Always study the context of any passage of Scripture. The study of a separate verse,detached from the context, often leads to a misinterpretation.

How will you find time?

  • Please understand! Deep and serious Bible study is not a chose: to do or not to do? It’s avital duty for a healthy spiritual life of Christians.
  • You have time to eat, sleep, bathe and work, meet with friends and play games … However,we cannot find time to study the Bible because “we are so busy…” We should realize: it’s not about time, it’s about choosing our priorities.
  • Make a decision: give up some things and schedule time for your daily reading of the Bible and prayer.“Take heed to yourself and to the doctrine. Continue in them…” (1Tim. 4:16).Key questions1. What is a definition of Biblical Inspiration?
    2. What evidence can you give that the Bible is inspired by God? 3. What is the Biblical canon?
    4. How to properly study the Bible?
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