The 7 Foundations of Biblical Doctrine

C. Glen James

1. God’s Holy Scriptures

I am convicted that "all Scripture is given by inspiration of God,” by which the whole Bible is inspired in the sense that holy men of God “were moved by the Holy Spirit” to write the very words of Scripture. I believe that the whole Bible in the originals is therefore without error, that all the Scriptures (OT and NT) center around the Lord Jesus Christ in His person and work in His first and second coming, and hence that no portion, even of the Old Testament, is properly read or understood, until it leads to Him. (John 5:39; Acts 1:16; 17:2–3; 18:28; 26:22–23; 28:23; Rom. 15:4; 1 Cor. 2:13; 10:11; 2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Peter 1:21)

2. Holy Trinity / Godhead

I believe the Godhead eternally exists in three persons—the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit—and that these three are one God, having precisely the same nature, attributes, and perfections, and worthy of precisely the same essence, character, confidence, and obedience. (Matt. 28:18–19; Mark 12:29; John 1:14; Acts 5:3–4; 2 Cor. 13:14; Heb. 1:1–3; Rev. 1:4–6).

3. Angels, Fallen and Unfallen

I believe God created an innumerable company of sinless, spiritual beings, known as angels; that one, “Lucifer, son of the morning”—the highest in rank—sinned through pride, thereby becoming Satan; that a great company of the angels followed him in his moral fall, some of whom became demons and are active as his agents and associates in the prosecution of his unholy purposes, while others who fell are “reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.” (Isa. 14:12–17; Ezek. 28:11–19; 1 Tim. 3:6; 2 Peter 2:4; Jude 6)

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4. Man, Created and Fallen

The fallen world we live in is not the original plan we see in the Garden of Eden prior to Genesis 3. However, in God’s omniscience, He knew how free will would bear out and provided a Savior in a fallen world to save those who trust in Him.

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5. The Dispensations

In a sense, all Christians are “Dispensationalists” or we would bring a lamb to sacrifice each week! Too often Dispensationalism is misrepresented by what it is NOT. Dispensations are detailed below, but in practical reality, they are simply time periods when the same Triune God governed man in a different form of administration—the garden vs the Law vs grace.

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6. The Incarnation of the Son of God

I believe that, as provided and purposed by God and as preannounced in the prophecies of the Scriptures, the eternal Son of God came into this world that He might manifest God to men, fulfill prophecy, and become the Redeemer of a lost world. To this end, He was born of the virgin, and received a human body and a sinless human nature. (Luke 1:30–35; John 1:18; 3:16; Heb. 4:15)

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7. Salvation Only Through Christ

I believe that, owing to universal death through sin—the entire human race has inherited (imputed) sin as well as personal sin—no one can enter the kingdom of God unless born again; no degree of reformation however great, no attainments in morality however high, no culture however attractive, no baptism or other ordinance however administered, can help the sinner to take even one step toward heaven.

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