Am I teaching my own doctrine?



I had a recent conversation with a Baptist about the plan of salvation. He was of the once saved always saved group. I suppose they are somewhat different than the Freewill Baptists? Anyhow, in teaching baptism for the remission of sins to this fellow, along with the truth that a Christian can fall away. I felt like I’ve kind of made another person upset again. Although he did overtly call me anything bad. he seemed to try and poke holes in me. Not with any Scripture except Ephesians 2:8. But he was just taking little jabs to try and discredit me in some way.

Anyhow, he made a statement that bothered me somewhat. When I was talking about being obedient and that obedience is required for salvation, he said something like “men need to be careful trying to decide how they are going to be saved.” It was as if I was saying my works would save me. I tried to tell him I’m talking about works of obedience. Not separate works of merit or works of the law of Moses.

Anyhow, it just seemed he is trying to proclaim that I’m teaching my own doctrine. That kind of gets me upset. I never said anything hateful, but I did start getting a little excitable in my talking, like speaking fast and boldly. I hope I did no wrong in that. I only spoke the truth, but there for a few
seconds I probably slightly elevated my voice and spoke faster. I’m sure that was because I felt he was deliberately trying to poke holes in me. I hope I’ve done no wrong here.


Have you ever noticed how often the leading Jews, Pharisees, and scribes tried to poke holes in Jesus and his reputation? For example, "For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, 'He has a demon!' The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, 'Behold, a gluttonous man and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!' Yet wisdom is vindicated by her deeds" (Matthew 11:18-19). Or consider the attacks on Paul by false teachers: "For they say, 'His letters are weighty and strong, but his personal presence is unimpressive and his speech contemptible'" (II Corinthians 10:10).

Just as you are careful to support your position with Scripture, don't take criticism from someone who disagrees with you when they don't support their position with Scripture.  This person had no answer to the points you made, so he was trying to denigrate you so that he could feel justified in not listening to what you were saying.

In regards to his statement, “men need to be careful trying to decide how they are going to be saved," my response would be, "I agree. I showed you what God said about the matter. How do you carefully decide to do something different?" When he brings up works, ask him, "Do you mean like what James said in James 2:14-26?" In other words, keep the conversation civil, but always have him arguing against what God said in the Bible.

When people start attacking your character, then it basically means you've made your point and they have no answer. "Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great; for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you" (Matthew 5:11-12).

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