That Form of Doctrine

The natural world God created is full of patterns. Honeycomb is a tessellation of hex­agons. Migrating geese fly as a V-shaped squadron. The moon waxes and wanes every 29.53 days.

When Moses was given precise and extensive instructions from God about the tabernacle and its construction (Exodus 25-40), he was told to make it and all its furnishings according to the pattern God had shown him on Mount Sinai (Exodus 25:9, 40; 26:30). As the master crafts­men Bezalel and Aholiab with their crew of skilled artisans completed their tasks and the tabernacle was erected, it was of pre­mium importance that everything be done “as the Lord had commanded Moses” (Exodus 39:1, 5, 7, 21, 29, 31, 43; 40:19, 21, 23, 25, 27, 29, 32).

God has given precise instructions on matters related to His house—the church. There is a pattern (tupos) of sound words (2 Timothy 1:13), a pattern (tupos) of good works (Titus 2:7), and a pattern (tupos) of godly living (Philippians 3:17).

It is this Greek word tupos (from which we get the word “type”, i.e., “model”) that Paul uses in Romans 6:17 when he writes: “But God be thanked that though you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form (tupos) of doctrine to which you were delivered.” There is one plan of salvation. There is only one specific place in God’s plan of salvation where you are moved from a state of bondage to a state of freedom.

For the children of Israel, their deliverance came when they crossed the Red Sea. Before its crossing, they were still in the land of slavery. After they crossed, they were freed, redeemed, no longer slaves. The inspired apostle Paul calls their crossing of the Red Sea in obedience to God’s command a “baptism into Moses” (1 Corinthians 10:2).

Every person today who desires to be delivered from the reign of sin and be translated into the kingdom of God’s dear Son must cross the Red Sea (spiritually-speaking). They must be baptized into Christ. They must obey from the heart that form of doctrine explicitly delivered by the Prophet Moses foretold in Deuteronomy 18:15-19.

To make your salvation possible Christ obediently died according to the Scriptures, was buried, and rose again the third day according to the Scriptures (1 Corinthians 15:3-4). You must follow that same pattern of death, burial, and resurrection; you must obey from the heart that form of doctrine by dying to sin in repentance, being buried in water for the remission of your sins, and rising to walk in newness of life (Romans 6:3-4).

God be thanked when you have done that.

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Author: jchowning

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