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not clear, what minimal faith is needed for salvation, for christians

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/13/2013 Category: Religion
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 655 times Debate No: 31247
Debate Rounds (3)
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what the absolute minimum needed to believe is not clear. this debate is beyond the "faith v works" debate and is simply in the realm of what faith is required to be saved. i am not saying this in terms of seeking to do or believe the minimum such as to "do as little as i have to to get saved".

i ask christians and they say "believe in jesus". then i point out that the devil does as even the bible says. so they say believe he's your savior. then i point out that some believe that different people see that differently... a good message or atonement etc. a fundamentalist would say a good message is not sufficient. so... you have to believe in atonement is one element. but then there's various beliefs in atonement, "christus victor" v "substitionary" etc.
but then the bible has lots of places where it says what to believe. "confess with your lips that he is lord and believe that he has risen and you will be saved". that doesn't really define what "Lord" is though, thoug h in any case all this atonement stuff may not be necessary after all. but what if they do beleive in atonement and all this other stuff, but dont' know to believe that he was risen? or what if they find that piece of evidence insufficient for belief but believe everything else? most christians just say "believe he's savior and you're good".
and what if you don't like this "savior" stuff given it's a loaded word. what if you just "relied" on Jesus instead, and acknowledged that you're a sinner, wouldn't that be enough? well it's not confesing and beleiving all that stuff, though no one said that was teh end all be all of what's required.
some don't believe he's god... is that okay? a dogamatic would start to list things you must believe. then i point out that that's dogmatic, and most would shy away from that. if it's too short though, they don't like the vagueness or the possibilities they are forgoing for the sake of an easy answer... it's a brutal issue when you get down to it. they want to have their cake... easy answer... and eat it too.. not giving a clear answer.
you have people who are new to the religion and one wouldn think couldn't be held responsible to everything to a T, and you have those who have honest disagreements over what doctrines should be belieeved and what shouldn't. and even if they knew of one doctrine that is considered standard and rejected what tehy knew... what is the minimum they'd have to believe? they can do the "confess with your mouth" stuff and reject say the trinity and be condemned for it?
basically everyone is at different stages. it seems the right conclusion is it depends on hwere you are in your walk.

so... beyond the whole faith v works debate.. even in terms of faith... what one must believe is not clear or taught very well.


I accept your challenge and I appreciate your wish to remain apart from the "faith vs. works" debate.

Unless you otherwise protest, I will be using the King James Bible in reference Romans 10 verse 9 for the following:

"That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved"

What is minimal you ask? The word itself when applied to salvation could be considered taboo in some circles. Based on the Bible or not, some would question your salvation if you even broached the subject of how little you can get away with doing. That is not my position and is not what I plan on speaking about. I intend to approach this from a "what must I do to be saved" view.

You mentioned that Satan believes in God and Christ. This is akin to my belief that you are a human being who for the most part is most likely functional in the way I am. However, if I said that I "believe IN" you, that is different. Let us say you tell me you are working to help needy families in your area. If I say "I believe you" I am stating that I believe you are stating a fact. If I say "I believe in you" I am stating that I believe in your ability to do so. I am acknowledging that you have the wherewithal to accomplish your task. If you are a person of poverty yourself, I might not say "I believe in you" if I do not see such ability in you. When in comes to "believing IN" Christ, you are believing that he has the power and ability to save you, not that you merely "believe" in his existence. I would say "believe IN" Jesus as your Savior.

John 3 verse 16:

"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth IN him should not perish, but have everlasting life."

"That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved"

What does Lord mean in the New Testament of the Bible? The problem lies in the basis of the translation. The New Testament is translated from the Greek. Whereas the Old Testament Hebrew has three different words for the word 'lord', the Greek only has one, 'kurios.' That means, LORD (OT for Jehovah), Lord (OT for adownai), and lord (OT for adown) all appear as 'kurios' in the Greek New Testament. In this verse, an opinion of course, but as Jesus has already been identified as the Son of God I would say that we can say that "Lord Jesus" does not refer to his title for owning a large country to the north. We also see God referred to as the "Lord God" so often that is often thought of as a synonymous word meaning the same thing, "God-God." You can take it to it's basic meaning, a man of high office. The usage really doesn't matter, it is always used to describe powerful status and Jesus would most likely be deserving in the Bible.

Lastly, the Bible states clearly that Christ's salvation is a gift.

Ephesians 2 verse 8:

"For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: [it is] the GIFT of God:"

Like any gift, you can only benefit from it if you use it. If you choose not to open the package you gain no benefit at all. How to properly use the gift, well, I believe that believing IN Christ and confessing that he is "gift-giver" is recipe for salvation. When Christmas times comes, do you not openly thank the person who gave you the gift? You are not just thanking but acknowledging them.
Debate Round No. 1


dairygirl4u2c forfeited this round.


Since none of my points were refuted and were dropped, I hold that that my points are valid and no longer available for contention.
Debate Round No. 2


i do see your points, in the "gist" of what's required. probably the best argument against me for this debate, which i've debated many times.

id just point out that "believe in" is very vaque. demons might be able to understand taht Jesus saves and in some sense "believes in Him". but they don't "rely" or whatever else you wanted to qualify. (all as i pointed out earlier) but once we get into actually specifiing so it's not too vague or too listy, suddenly you see the whole essence of my argument.


silverneccho forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by ockcatdaddy 4 years ago
you should never be looking for an answer on what the minimum faith to get into heaven or "achieve salvation" you should just be worshipping because you want to not because you feel you need to.
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