The Genuine Christian Faith
- We hold the faith which is common to all believers. – Titus 1:4; Jude 3
- The Bible is the complete, divine revelation inspired word-by-word by God through the Holy Spirit. – 2 Pet. 1:21; 2 Tim. 3:16
- God is uniquely one, yet Triune – the Father, the Son, and the Spirit. – 1 Tim. 2:5a; Matt. 28:19
- The Son of God, even God Himself, was incarnated to be a man by the name of Jesus Christ. – John 1:1; 1:14
- Christ died on the cross for our sins, shedding His blood for our redemption. – 1 Pet. 2:24; Eph. 1:7a
- Christ resurrected from among the dead on the third day. – 1 Cor. 15:4
- Christ ascended to the right hand of God to be Lord of all. – Acts 1:9; 2:33, 36
- Whenever any person repents to God and believes in the Lord Jesus Christ, he is regenerated (born again) and becomes a living member of the Body of Christ. – Acts 20:21; John 3:3; Eph. 1:22-23; Rom. 12:5
- Christ is coming again to receive His believers to Himself. – 1 Thes. 2:19
The believers in the Irvine Christian Students club hold to this genuine faith! Earlier this year, it came to our attention that there was some misunderstanding about who we are and what we believe. Since that misunderstanding even resulted in some negative speaking about our club and its members, we realized the need to share with everyone, in a specific and definite way, the faith we hold in common with all genuine believers.
Below, you will find a list of heresies and false statements that have at times been wrongly identified as the beliefs of the Irvine Christian Students club. Each heresy and false statement is followed by a brief but clear refutation based on the Word. We warmly invite you to fellowship with us about these matters, or any others that may be a concern. Through this brief article, we wish not only to define who we are, but also to encourage all our fellow believers to be equipped and nourished with the healthy teaching in the Word of God. Wherever you may meet, we hope that you are edified, adjusted, and encouraged as we were by these words!
-Your brothers and sisters in Christ.
- “You can lose your salvation; you must work and not sin in order to keep it.” Unfortunately, the belief is held even among some Christians that after being regenerated, a believer can be “unsaved” by sin or other means. This is a heretical belief that disregards the eternal efficacy of the blood of Christ and considers His redemptive work a common thing (Heb. 10:29, 12, 14). Furthermore, the Bible clearly states that salvation is by faith, not by works (Gal. 2:16; Rom. 3:20, 28). The genuine Christian faith rejects the teaching that believers can ever lose their salvation. The Bible both assures us of our salvation for today and secures our salvation for the future. Once we are saved we can never be “unsaved.” Often, believers think that losing the joy of their salvation means they have lost their salvation. This is not true, and as believers there is a way for us to maintain the joy of our salvation.
Please enjoy these short videos on the wonderful subjects of the assurance, security, and joy of salvation!
- “You must be baptized in order to be regenerated.” The orthodox faith common to all genuine believers also rejects the teaching of baptismal regeneration, which states that one must be baptized in order to be born again. In order for anyone to be saved from God’s condemnation and receive eternal life (be born again) they need to repent from their sins and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ as their Savior (Eph 2:8; John 1:12-13, 3:15-16, 36; Rom 10:9-13). Believing is the only requirement for anyone to not perish but have eternal life. This is clearly seen at the end of Luke 23, where the thief who was crucified with the Lord had no opportunity to get baptized, yet the Lord told him that he would be with Him in paradise on that same day.
- “God is one, but as the Father, Son, and Spirit, He is separate; the Father became the Son and ceased to exist as the Father, then the Son became the Spirit, ceasing to exist as the Son, Jesus Christ.” This is a heretical teaching called modalism, the belief that God came in three modes. At the other extreme of this is the heretical statement called tritheism, which states that the Father, Son, and Spirit are three separate Gods. The genuine Christian faith rejects both modalism and tritheism. God is uniquely one, yet Triune – the Father, the Son, and the Spirit (1 Tim. 2:5a, Matt. 28:19). All Three are God, all Three are eternal, and all Three coexist simultaneously. He is, has always been, and will always be one, yet three; His three hypostases (“substances”) are distinct but never separate.
- “Many members of Christian Students think they’re the only church.” This is not true. Members of the Irvine Christian Students club meet with a variety of different congregations. Any genuine believer (or unbeliever seeking God) is warmly welcomed to join the club regardless of background. The church is simply the assembly of the called out ones, as implied by the Greek word ekklesia. Thus, to be a member of the church, one must be a called-out one, or, for the sake of simplicity, a Christian. How can we know who is a Christian and who is not? “If anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not of Him” (Rom. 8:9). According to the Word of God, every person in whose heart Christ dwells by His Spirit is a true Christian. Christians may differ from one another in a thousand respects, but in this fundamental matter there is no difference between them: one and all have the Spirit of Christ dwelling within them. Whoever has believed and received the Lord Jesus has the Spirit of Christ within him. What determines whether you are in or out of the church is whether or not you have the life of God within you. Everyone who has been born of God and possesses His life is a member of the church, His Body, and we love to receive and fellowship with all genuine believers regardless of whether or not they choose to meet with us. They are as much a part of the true church as we are!
- “Christian Students promotes only one version of the Bible.” This is not true. Some of the Bible versions commonly used by students in our meetings are: KJV, NIV, RCV, ESV, NASB, NLT. It is entirely up to the individuals in our club to decide what is the best translation. Many of our students appreciate some translations that allow for a richer and more accurate study of the Bible; these include the literal versions translated from the Nestle-Aland Greek text compilation, which comprises the most ancient Greek manuscripts available. Examples of such versions are the English Standard Version, the Recovery Version and the New American Standard Bible.
- “Christian Students believes you can only use certain musical instruments to worship God.”This is not true. We love to use the piano, guitars, tambourines and violin in our meetings to accompany our singing with our hearts to God (Eph 5:19-20). However, we would never be legalistic about whether to play or not to play instruments in worship or service to God. The real worship to God is in spirit and in truthfulness (John 4:24).