Do you have to believe in the Trinity to be saved?

Monday Musings for July 05, 2021

Good morning, Musers,

Imagine that many centuries ago, a wealthy benefactor founded a club. Its purpose was to raise the standard of living among the poor, one person at a time. Members were supposed to get involved in the lives of other people with an eye towards lifting them up in health, education — and if the opportunity presented itself — in wealth.

The ultimate goal for members was to duplicate themselves twice. Then, at least two of their targets would lift up two more people… etc.… etc. With this model, well-being would grow exponentially, and the world would be free of poverty in just 33 generations!

Note also that the club was egalitarian. Anyone could join, and everyone had an opportunity to serve regardless of their wealth, their gifts and their personalities. Neither gender, wealth or station mattered in this club. All members were equal.

It was easy to become a member, too… because the requirements were minimal. An applicant had to understand and affirm the club’s purposes and pledge fidelity to its body. After that, they would be members for life — and there were no fees!

Fast forward to today. Not only does the club exist, it is still on mission. But some things have changed. As the membership increased, people with different visions started joining the club, so factions started to form, and people began to debate those different ideas.

Even scholars got involved. They published works for or against the various ideas, and the better-informed club members studied their commentaries… and eventually, “consensus doctrines of the club” emerged. But these caused divisions.

Some members thought that prospective members should affirm the club’s doctrines before they were accepted into membership — even though that would violate the club’s charter!

Later, a conservative faction emerged who said that, not only should prospective members affirm the consensus doctrines before they get voted in, but members — who refused to affirm those doctrines today — were never true members… so perhaps they should be removed from membership!

Welcome to the New Testament Church! Let me ask, what did you do to become a member of the Body of Christ? … and what do you have to believe to maintain your position?

The first thing I did was make a “philosophical” adjustment to my thinking about sin. (I repented!) I stopped trying to be a good person… hoping that everything would work out. I dumped all my sins — past, present and future — at the foot of the cross… but I did not affirm the Trinity.

Now, I understood that any congruent life going forward would have Christ-related burdens… and studying the Bible and making decisions about doctrines would be part of that. But, “becoming” a Christian and “being” a Christian are two different jobs — and a Christian is supposed to grow in Christ!

However, after we are saved, nothing we do (or don’t do), nothing we learn (or don’t learn), and nothing we believe (or don’t believe) can affect the regeneration that has already occurred. We are God’s children… and we can’t become unborn.

I don’t want you to misunderstand me. Losing the handle on a major doctrine is serious business! But it cannot — because nothing can — remove us from the position we have in Christ! (Romans 8:38-39). We are God’s children forever.

 

(Click here to read the article referenced above. For comments, or to join the Monday Musings mailing list, contact us at mainsailep@gmail.com. To submit a question about God, the Bible or the Christian culture, click here.)