All scripture contained in this podcast is from the King James Bible (Authorized Version)
May 12, 2022

7 Characteristics Of Biblical Christianity


What is Christianity? Is Biblical Christianity something different than what passes for "Christianity" today? What is "real"or "authentic" Christianity? Are you practicing real or authentic Christianity? Do you attend a church that professes to be Christian? If Biblical Christianity is what we aspire to, what is it, and why should you care? Check and see in this podcast why we think it matters and why the Christians in the Bible said it mattered. 

Transcript

7 Characteristics of Biblical Christianity

  • We’re living in a day and age when Christianity is deformed and unrecognizable.
  • Many beliefs and practices, not found in the Bible, have been added to Christianity over the centuries that have disfigured it and made it completely un-biblical.
  1.  Prayers for the dead 
  2. The sign and image of the cross 310 AD. 
  3. Veneration of angels and saints 
  4. The use of images 375 AD.
  5. The worship of Mary as "Mother of God” 431 AD.
  6. The dogma of Purgatory 593 AD.
  7. Prayers to Mary, dead saints, and angels 600 AD.
  8. Celebration of Christmas 336 AD.

Acts 26:28 (KJV) Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian.

 Two historical references to Christianity by name occur in the book of Acts. One in Acts 11:26 and the other one is right here. One is at the beginning of its history, and one is near the end of the book of Acts. Both involve Paul. In this verse:

  1. Paul is an example of a Christian.
  2. Paul persuaded people to be Christians.
  3. Unsaved people knew what a Christian was.

2,000 years have passed, and I say, today, there is confusion around what Christianity is. Is Christianity a political system? Is it a political party?  Is it a ritualistic religion? Is it a historical faith?

  • What is Christianity? 
  • What is a Christian?
  • And how can we arrive at the answer to these questions?
  • Biblical Christianity is simply Christianity that finds its beliefs and practices in the Bible, particularly in the New Testament and limits itself to those beliefs and practices. 
  • Since the New Testament is the oldest historical document that records what Christians did and what they believed, it is to this source that we will look for the answers to our questions. 
  • We will find 7 Characteristics of Biblical Christianity in the Bible itself. And in the Bible alone.
  1. Our starting point will be that we accept the King James Bible as the preserved and infallible words of God.
  2. Our goal will be to not add to or subtract from the word of God.

Deuteronomy 4:2 (KJV) Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.

Deuteronomy 12:32 (KJV) What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it.

Proverbs 30:5-6 (KJV) Every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him. Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.

Revelation 22:18-19 (KJV) For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

  1. Our goal will be to not change the word of God.

II Corinthians 2:17 (KJV) For we are not as many, which corrupt the word of God: but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God speak we in Christ.

  1. And our goal will be not to remove words from their contexts.

2 Corinthians 4:2 (KJV) But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God.

1st Characteristic: Biblical Christianity Exalts the word of god not the word of men. 

Acts 24:14 (KJV) But this I confess unto thee, that after the way which they call heresy, so worship I the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the law and in the prophets:

  • What does this mean? Plainly, that Christians placed confidence in the Scriptures above their critics. 
  • The word of God is raised above the word of men.
  • Bible authority is placed above and before human authority. 
  • Biblical Christianity believes the bible above and before man.
  • Authority of the scriptures. 
  • Sciptural authority; not sacerdotal authority.
  • Christians believe in the authority of the bible above all. 
  • (final authority, completely trustworthy). 
  • BiblE Authority. 
  • fINAL AUTHORITY. 

• THIS IS A CHARACTERISTIC LACKING IN MUCH OF MODERN DAY “CHRISTIAINITY.”

Paul is a NT Christian.

In the Bible, Christians believed and exalted the word of God above the word of men.

Acts 24:14 (KJV) But this I confess unto thee, that after the way which they call heresy, so worship I the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the law and in the prophets:

  • Believed … Not all things that were spoken by the fathers.
  • Believed … Not all things that were spoken by the Pharisees
  • Believed … Not all things that were spoken by the Sadducees
  • Believed … Not all things that were spoken by the Herodians
  • Believed … Not all things that were spoken by the Lawyers.
  • Believed …  all things spoken by man
  • But only that that was spoken by God.
  • THIS IS A CHARACTERISTIC LACKING IN MUCH OF MODERN DAY “CHRISTIAINITY.”

In the Bible, Christians exalted the word of God above the word of men.

Romans 3:4 (KJV) God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar; as it is written, that thou mightest be justified in thy sayings, and mightest overcome when thou art judged. 

  • There are no infallible Christian leaders. 
  • There are no inspired words beyond the Bible.

In the Bible, Christians accepted the word of God as the standard of measure.

Acts 17:11 (KJV) These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.

  • They weren’t commended for believing everything that Paul said.
  • They were commended for not believing everything that Paul said.
  • They were commended for exalting the word of God above the word of man.

Romans 4:3 (KJV) For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.

Galatians 4:30 (KJV) Nevertheless what saith the scripture? Cast out the bondwoman and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the freewoman.

In the Bible, Christians accepted the word of God as the key to knowledge, Truth, and Freedom

John 8:31-32 (KJV) Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

  • We’re not continuing in creeds.
  • We’re not continuing commentaries.
  • We’re not continuing in cannons.
  • We’re not continuing in commandments of men.

In the Bible, Christians received the word of God as the very word of God.

I Thessalonians 2:13 (KJV) For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of Godwhich ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.

  • They identified the words of man.
  • The Christians here in Thessalonica raised the word of God up above the word of men.

In the Bible, Christians received the word of God as primary.

Matthew 22:29 (KJV) Jesus answered and said unto them, Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God. (not the teachings, not the interpretations, not the traditions, not the commandments…the scriptures)

2nd Characteristic:  Biblical Christianity recognizes Paul’s primacy; not Peter’s.

Bibllical Christianity recognizes Paul’s singularly unique apostleship. 

Paul is clearly identified as the Apostle sent to the gentiles.

Romans 11:13 (KJV) For I speak to you Gentiles, inasmuch as I am the apostle of the Gentiles, I magnify mine office:

  • There was a leading apostle of Christianity.
  • There was a primary apostle.
  • There was an apostle singled out from the rest with a special leadership.
  • There was an apostle that was sent specifically to the church. And it was Paul.
  • There was an apostle sent to the Gentile world.

Paul is clearly identified as the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles.

Romans 15:15-16 (KJV) Nevertheless, brethren, I have writtenthe more boldly unto you in some sort, as putting you in mind, because of the grace that is given to me of God, That I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost.

Galatians 2:7 (KJV) But contrariwise, when they saw that the gospel of the uncircumcision was committed unto me, as the gospel of the circumcision was unto Peter;

Galatians 2:8 (KJV) (For he that wrought effectually in Peter to the apostleship of the circumcision, the same was mighty in me toward the Gentiles:)

Galatians 2:9 (KJV) And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision.

1 Corinthians 4:16 (KJV) Wherefore I beseech you, be ye followers of me.

1 Corinthians 11:1 (KJV) Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.

  • Biblical Christianity recognized Paul’s PRIMACY, not Peter’s.

The Gospel of Christ was revealed to Paul personally (Galatians 1:11, 12; Romans 2:16, 16:25; II Timothy 2:8; Titus 1:3; I Corinthians 15:1-4). Paul is central to New Testament Christianity.

Galatians 1:11-12 (KJV) But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.

Romans 2:16 (KJV) In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel.

Romans 16:25 (KJV) Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began,

2 Timothy 2:8 (KJV) Remember that Jesus Christ of the seed of David was raised from the dead according to my gospel:

Titus 1:3 (KJV) But hath in due times manifested his word through preaching, which is committed unto me according to the commandment of God our Saviour;

Paul is the “Missionary” leader of New Testament Christianity(Acts 11:26, 13:1-3; 26:28). He is found present when the word shows up in Scripture and he is found persuading men to become “Christians.”

Acts 9:15 (KJV) But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel:

Acts 22:21 (KJV) And he said unto me, Depart: for I will send thee far hence unto the Gentiles.

Acts 26:16-18 (KJV) But rise, and stand upon thy feet: for I have appeared unto thee for this purpose, to make thee a minister and a witness both of these things which thou hast seen, and of those things in the which I will appear unto thee; Delivering thee from the people, and from the Gentiles, unto whom now I send thee, To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and fromthe power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.

Acts 13:47 (KJV) For so hath the Lord commanded us, saying, I have set thee to be a light of the Gentiles, that thou shouldest be for salvation unto the ends of the earth.

Paul was entrusted with the “mystery” of the church (It’s relationship to God, composition, position, message, purpose, and future) (Ephesians).

Ephesians 3:1-7 (KJV) For this cause I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you Gentiles, If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward: How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words, Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ) Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit; That the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel: Whereof I was made a minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given unto me by the effectual working of his power.

Ephesians 5:32 (KJV) This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.

Paul is the author of all the Bible epistles addressed to churches (I and II Corinthians, Galatians, I and II Thessalonians, Philemon).

  • 1 Corinthians 1:2 (KJV) Paul, called to be an apostleUnto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours:
  • 2 Corinthians 1:1 (KJV) Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, unto the church of God which is at Corinth, with all the saints which are in all Achaia:
  • Galatians 1:2 (KJV) Paul an apostle…unto the churches of Galatia:
  • 1 Thessalonians 1:1 (KJV) Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians which is in God the Father and in the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.
  • 2 Thessalonians 1:1 (KJV) Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:
  • Philemon 1-2 (KJV) Paul, a prisoner of Jesus Christ, and Timothy our brother, unto Philemon our dearly beloved, and fellow-laborer… and to the church in thy house:

Paul is the author of all Bible letters to Christians (Romans, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, I and II Timothy, Titus).

  • Romans 1:1, 7 (KJV) Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle…To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to besaints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.
  • Ephesians 1:1 (KJV) Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus:
  • Philippians 1:1 (KJV) Paul and Timotheus, the servants of Jesus Christ, to all the saints in Christ Jesus which are at Philippi, with the bishops and deacons:
  • Colossians 1:1-2 (KJV) Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timotheus our brother, To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ which are at Colosse: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
  • 1 Timothy 1:1-2 (KJV) Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the commandment of God our Saviour, and Lord Jesus Christ, which is our hope; Unto Timothy, my own son in the faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.
  • 2 Timothy 1:1-2 (KJV) Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, according to the promise of life which is in Christ Jesus, To Timothy, my dearly beloved son: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.
  • Titus 1:1-4 (KJV)Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ…To Titus, mine own son after the common faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Saviour.

3rd Characteristic: Biblical Christianity acknowledges Antioch as the origin and center of Christianity; not rome. 

The disciples were first called Christians in Antioch.

Acts 11:26 (KJV) And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch. (Not Jerusalem, Caesarea, Alexandria, Carthage, and NOT ROME) 

The first Bible teachers were from Antioch.

Acts 13:1 (KJV) Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.

The first missionary trip went out from Antioch.

Acts 13:2-3 (KJV) As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away.

The first missionary trip returned to Antioch.

Acts 14:26 (KJV) And thence sailed to Antioch, from whence they had been recommended to the grace of God for the work which they fulfilled.

The Apostles and church sent notification to Antioch (not Rome) of the decision at Jerusalem.

Acts 15:22-25 (KJV) Then pleased it the apostles and elders, with the whole church, to send chosen men of their own company to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas; namely, Judas surnamed Barsabas, and Silas, chief men among the brethren: And they wrote letters by them after this manner; The apostles and elders and brethren send greeting unto the brethren which are of the Gentiles in Antioch and Syria and Cilicia: Forasmuch as we have heard, that certain which went out from us have troubled you with words, subverting your souls, saying, Ye must be circumcised, and keep the law: to whom we gave no such commandment: It seemed good unto us, being assembled with one accord, to send chosen men unto you with our beloved Barnabas and Paul,

The second missionary trip went out from Antioch. 

Acts 15:35-36 (KJV) Paul also and Barnabas continued in Antioch, teaching and preaching the word of the Lord, with many others also. And some days after Paul said unto Barnabas, Let us go again and visit our brethren in every city where we have preached the word of the Lord, and see how they do.

The second missionary trip returned to Antioch and the third trip went out from Antioch.

Acts 18:22-23 (KJV) And when he had landed at Caesarea, and gone up, and saluted the church, he went down to Antioch. And after he had spent some time there, he departed, and went over allthe country of Galatia and Phrygia in order, strengthening all the disciples.

Rome is not on any apostolic missionary itinerary. 56 Locations documented as apostolic destinations in the New Testament. There is not one mention of any apostle going to Rome unless it was when Paul went. His trip to Rome virtually ended his ministry.

There is no “Church of rome” or “churches of Rome,” “AT Rome,” or “in Rome” mentioned in the Bible.

  1. The use of the word church in the New Testament:
  2. Church at Jerusalem (Acts 8:1)
  3. Church at Antioch (Acts 13:1)
  4. Church at Cenchrea (Romans 16:1)
  5. Church at Corinth (I Corinthians 11:2)
  6. Church at Babylon (I Peter 5:13)
  7. Church of the Laodiceans (Colossians 4:16)
  8. Church of the Thessalonians (I Thessalonians 1:1)
  9. Church of Ephesus (Revelation 2:1)
  10. Church in Smyrna (Revelation 2:8)
  11. Church in Pergamos (Revelation 2:12)
  12. Church in Thyatira (Revelation 2:18)
  13. Church in Sardis (Revelation 3:1)
  14. Church in Philadelphia (Revelation 3:7)
  15. Church of the Laodiceans (Revelation 3:14)
  16. THERE IS NO CHURCH OF ROME mentioned.

 

  1. The use of the word churches in the New Testament.
  2. Churches throughout Judaea, Galilee, and Samaria (Acts 9:31)
  3. Churches of Galatia (Galatians 1:2)
  4. Churches of Asia (I Corinthians 16:19)
  5. Churches of Macedonia (II Corinthians 8:1)
  6. Churches of Judaea (Galatians 1:22)
  7. Churches in Asia (Revelation 1:11)

 

  1. Paul was hindered from going to Rome (1:13; 15:23)

Romans 1:13 (KJV) Now I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you, (but was let hitherto,) that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles.

Romans 15:23 (KJV) But now having no more place in these parts, and having a great desire these many years to come unto you;

1 Thessalonians 2:18 (KJV) Wherefore we would have come unto you, even I Paul, once and again; but Satan hindered us.

  1. 4th Characteristic: Biblical Christianity (Preaches and teaches) spreads the word of god.

Romans 1:16 (KJV) For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

Mark 16:15 (KJV) And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

Romans 1:15 (KJV) So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also.

  • Christianity preached the gospel of Christ.
  • Not the pretended political power or authority of the church. 
  • Not “the church that Christ founded.”  
  • Not the gospel of the kingdom.
  • Not the gospel of political power.
  1. The NT Church is never seen in Scripture ruling with or in comradery with the Roman government (State).
  2. The NT Church is never seen in Scripture in remonstrance or revolution with the Roman government (State) for preferential treatment, favoritism, rights, or recognition of “holidays.”
  3. The NT Church is never seen in Scripture requesting or claiming special treatment (tax exemption) from the government.
  4. The NT Church is never seen in Scripture conquering, subverting, overthrowing, or controlling the Roman government.
  5. The NT Church is never seen in Scripture trying to legislate or gain the support of the Roman government. 
  6. The NT Church is never seen in Scripture trying to obtain funds from the Roman government to support churches or the spread or propagation of NT Christianity.

Acts 4:31 (KJV)  And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.

Acts 6:2 (KJV)  Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them, and said, It is not reason that we should leave the word of God, and serve tables.

Acts 6:7 (KJV)  And the word of God increased; and the number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly; and a great company of the priests were obedient to the faith.

Acts 8:14 (KJV)  Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John:

Acts 11:1 (KJV)  And the apostles and brethren that were in Judaea heard that the Gentiles had also received the word of God.

Acts 12:24 (KJV)  But the word of God grew and multiplied.

Acts 13:5 (KJV)  And when they were at Salamis, they preached the word of God in the synagogues of the Jews: and they had also John to their minister.

Acts 13:7 (KJV)  Which was with the deputy of the country, Sergius Paulus, a prudent man; who called for Barnabas and Saul, and desired to hear the word of God.

Acts 13:44 (KJV)  And the next sabbath day came almost the whole city together to hear the word of God.

Acts 13:46 (KJV)  Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles.

Acts 17:13 (KJV)  But when the Jews of Thessalonica had knowledge that the word of God was preached of Paul at Berea, they came thither also, and stirred up the people.

Acts 18:11 (KJV)  And he continued there a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.

Acts 19:20 (KJV)  So mightily grew the word of God and prevailed.

  1. 5th Characteristic: Biblical Christianity practices SEPARATION, not Syncretism. 

Separation

  1. Separation from unequal yokes.

II Corinthians 6:14-18 (KJV) Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.

  1. Separation from the bondage of religious laws and rituals. 

Galatians 5:1 (KJV) Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.Galatians 5:4 (KJV) Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.Galatians 4:9-11 (KJV) But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage? Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years. I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour in vain.

  1. Separation from worldly endeavors and methods.

Romans 12:2 (KJV) And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Luke 16:13 (KJV) No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.

Separation from the affairs of this life (Pastors).

II Timothy 2:4 (KJV) No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.

Separation from philosophy (the wisdom of man)

Colossians 2:8 (KJV) Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.

Separation from the sacrifices of Gentiles.

I Corinthians 10:20-21 (KJV) But I say that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils. Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord's table, and of the table of devils.

Separation from non-Pauline doctrine.

Romans 16:17 (KJV) Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.

2 Timothy 2:7 (KJV) Consider what I say; and the Lord give thee understanding in all things.

  1. Separation of church and state (Separation of religion from government.)
  2. States (Governments) rely on the power of force. The church relies on the power of persuasion.

Romans 13:1-4 (KJV) For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.

Acts 26:28-29 (KJV) Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian. And Paul said, I would to God, that not only thou, but also all that hear me this day, were both almost, and altogether such as I am, except these bonds.

  1. States (Governments) rule and control society. Church leadership is to shepherd and lead.

Matthew 20:25-28 (KJV) But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them. But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister; And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant: Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.

  1. States (Governments) are motivated by self-interest. The church is motivated by the words of the Savior and the spiritual needs of the lost.

--That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to affect their Safety and Happiness. (Declaration of Independence)

Luke 19:10 (KJV) For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.

  1. States (Governments) participate in the activity of war. The church is the herald of the gospel of peace.

--that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. (Declaration of Independence)

Luke 9:56 (KJV) For the Son of man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them. And they went to another village.

Romans 10:15 (KJV) And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace and bring glad tidings of good things!

  1. States are limited to geographic areas. The church is to preach the gospel in all the world.

Matthew 28:19 (KJV) Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:

Mark 16:15 (KJV) And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

6th Characteristic: biblical christianity preaches salvation by faith. 

Biblical Christianity preaches salvation by faith (Acts 13:38, 39; Romans 3:22-28; 5:1, 2; Ephesians 2:8, 9)

Acts 13:37-39 (KJV) But he, whom God raised again, saw no corruption. Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins: And by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses.

Romans 3:28 (KJV) Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.

Romans 5:1 (KJV) Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:

Ephesians 2:8-9 (KJV) For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.

Romans 11:6 (KJV) And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise, grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise, work is no more work.

Titus 3:4-7 (KJV) But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

Romans 6:23 (KJV) For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

7th Characteristic: biblical CHRISTIANITY baptizes believers not infants.

Biblical Christianity baptizes believers not babies, infants, fetuses, Comma patients, etc. (Acts 8:37; 9:18; 10:47, 48; 16:30, 31; 19:5).

The eunuch an adult cognizant believer

Acts 8:36-38 (KJV) And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized? And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him.

Paul was an adult cognizant believer

Acts 9:18-19 (KJV) And immediately there fell from his eyes as it had been scales: and he received sight forthwith, and arose, and was baptized. And when he had received meat, he was strengthened. Then was Saul certain days with the disciples which were at Damascus.

People who received the word

Acts 2:41 (KJV) Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.

Those to whom Paul spoke the word of God.

Acts 16:30-33 (KJV) And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. And they spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house. And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway.

Those who heard the word were Baptized

Acts 19:5 (KJV) When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.

7 characteristics of biblical christianity

1ST CHARACTERISTIC: BIBLICAL CHRISTIANITY EXALTS THE WORD OF GOD NOT THE WORD OF MEN.

2nd Characteristic:  Biblical Christianity recognizes Paul’s primacy; not Peter’s.

3rd Characteristic: Biblical Christianity acknowledges Antioch as the origin and center of Christianity; not rome. 

4TH CHARACTERISTIC: BIBLICAL CHRISTIANITY (PREACHES AND TEACHES) SPREADS THE WORD OF GOD.

5th Characteristic: Biblical Christianity  practices SEPARATION, not Syncretism. 

6th Characteristic: biblical christianity preaches salvation by faith.

7th Characteristic: biblical CHRISTIANITY baptizes believers not infants.

Conclusion:

Do you know what a Christian is?

Do you know what biblical Christianity is?

Are you a Christian?

Do you attend a church that professes to be Christian?

If not, Repent now. trust in Jesus Christ.

Webster definition:

Christianity: the religion derived from Jesus Christ, based on the Bible as sacred scripture, and professed by Eastern, Roman Catholic, and Protestant bodies

A Christian: one who professes belief in the teachings of Jesus Christ

Working definition:

Christianity is a belief and behavioral system founded on the completed revelation of the New Testament. and tightly associated with Paul, the city of Antioch, the Aegean area.

A Christian is someone who accepts the truth of the completed New Testament through faith in Jesus Christ as Propitiation, Atonement, Savior, and Lord and attempts to live pleasing to Him.

Bruce E. Varner Profile Photo

Bruce E. Varner

Pastor

Pastor Bruce Varner is a Bible-believing pastor who loves the Lord and aspires to be faithful to God’s word (AV 1611). He has pastored for 28 years in Upstate New York. He is currently between ministries and he and his family are living in Spruce Pine, North Carolina. He was saved when he was 18 under the direct ministry of Pastors James Modlish, Charles Perkins, and Peter Ruckman Sr.  While open air preaching at East High Stadium on December 24, 1979, he sensed God’s calling to learn the Bible. He attended Bible classes and was trained for the ministry in and through the local church ministry of the Bible Baptist Church in Pensacola, Florida. His training Pastors were Peter S. Ruckman and James McGaughey. He graduated from the Pensacola Bible Institute in 1983. Pastor Varner and Samantha Thomas married in 1992. He and his wife have one son, Nicolas Evan Varner. Pastor Varner is available for meetings In North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, and Virginia.

Pastor Varner is available to you, should you need spiritual help. Email: pastorv@lightlink.com Cell: 607-216-2586