All Christians must believe Jesus died on the cross and on the third day was bodily raised from the dead.The Apostle Paul writes in 1 Cor. 15:17 “And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins.” Without the resurrection of Jesus, Paul says our faith is worthless and we are still in our sins; which means when we die we will pay the penalty for our sins, rather than Jesus.If Christ was not raised from the dead there is no eternal life; no possibility of heaven.
Paul is a credible source of information because he was an eyewitness of the resurrected Christ, having met Him on the road to Damascus. He writes in 1Corth. 15:20 “But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead.”
Paul then states, in the book of Romans, to be a follower of Christ you have to make Him the Lord of your life and believe God raised Jesus from the dead.Romans 10:9 “That if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”Anyone who denies the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ can call themselves anything they want but not a Christian.
Finally, we hear from Peter at Pentecost, where is preaches a powerful sermon, launching the Christian Church. Luke records the words of Peter in Acts 2:31-32 “Seeing what was ahead, he [King David looking to the future] spoke of the resurrection of the Christ, that he was not abandoned to the grave, nor did his body see decay. 32God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of the fact.”Peter spoke to a crowd of a few thousand people and said he and the disciples were eyewitnesses of the resurrection.Following this sermon the new believers in Christ took the message of the resurrection and preached it far and wide.They staked their lives on the truth of the bodily resurrection. They believed Jesus rose from the dead and told others, serving as examples to us.
This is the final posting on the essential doctrines of Christianity. Other doctrines could be added to this list but I wanted to make it manageable. These doctrines are non-negotiable; you cannot deny any of the 6 doctrines and say you a Christian. These doctrines were developed in response to heresies that threatened the church. Essential doctrines are walls to protect the true beliefs of the true church. This is why we need to reach Mormons and Jehovah Witnesses for Christ; they deny or alter all of the essential doctrines and will be held accountable by God. They will be separated from God and spend eternity in hell.
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