I found an old news paper advertisement for a non-denominational church. The paper is yellowed with age and I suspect it is many years old. The advertisement listed 14 ‘yes’ or ‘no’ questions. The purpose of the advertisement was to generate interest in the particular church. Their method was to show their theological teachings by posing and then answering questions. Allow me to present the questions, and the Biblical references for the answers. Then I will comment on the value of this process.
- Was Christ born of a virgin? Matthew 1:18-23.
- Did Christ ever do anything wrong? I Peter 2:22, Hebrews 4:15
- Is the Old Testament Law of Moses still in effect? Ephesians 2:15, Colossians 2:14
- Is there and absolute, unchanging standard of right and wrong? Matthew 7:24-27, II John 9, Hebrews 13:8
- Can a man be saved by his good works alone? Ephesians 2:8-9, Acts 10, Acts 11:14
- Will the good people of all churches be saved? Matthew 7:21-27
- Does the Bible teach that babies should be baptized? (No references provided.)
- Is it necessary to be baptized in order to be saved? John 3:5, Mark 16:15-16, Acts 2:28
- Is sprinkling taught in the New Testament? Acts 8:38, Romans 6:3-5
- Does man have the authority to revise and modify the original Scriptures as time passes? Galatians 1:6-9, Jude 3, Revelation 22:18-19
- Are the denominations branches of one church? John 15:1-6, Matthew 16:18, Ephesians 1:22-23, Ephesians 4:4-6, I Corinthians 1:10-13, John 17:20-21
- Does the Bible teach that each person will be individually judged by an all-wise God? Hebrews 10:30-31
- Does the Bible teach that every man will spend eternity in either heaven or hell? Matthew 25:31-46, Revelation 21
- Will men have a second chance after death? Hebrews 9:27
The design of the questions has a purpose. Each question is phrased with an answer and a particular Biblical reference in mind. In a Court of Law this would be objected to as ‘leading the witness.’ But the beauty of faith it that it is above the law of the land. Each church can use whatever form of argument they want.
Peter once said to Jesus (I have to paraphrase because I don’t have a Bible in my hand):
“So many laws, so little time
Which of these laws,
Should I make mine?”
Jesus answered, “There are two.”
The essence of Jesus’s answer was simple – Christianity is not a game called trivial pursuit. Some laws are more important than others. Some laws take precedence over others.
My notion is that the questions were designed to discriminate and to divide. I think I will let our readers weigh in on this one. Here are the questions:
- Are the above questions valid, useful, and relevant?
- Are the scripture references correct or most useful to answer the questions?
- Does this sort of church promotion miss the point of Christianity – or is this a legitimate form of evangelism?
For your information the church sponsoring the advertisement is
Church of Christ
3805 Granny White Pike
Nashville, Tennessee, 37204