This coming Sunday, September 17th, Seminole FBC will be embracing a very important new ministry, catechism. This new journey will take the complete church (children through adults) into a 52 week comprehensive study on the basic tenets of the Christian faith as given to us by the Word of God. It matters! It eternally matters! The assimilation of biblical theology and doctrine is a discipline that the church cannot afford to get wrong or become apathetic in. So, we have this amazing journey of catechism that will unify the body of Christ and give us the building blocks that will allow our faith to flourish and our church to be grounded in truth.
What is Catechism?
Catechism is a doctrinal manual used in the Christian church to teach Biblical truth in an orderly way. Usually this is done in the form of questions and answers. Throughout the New Testament we see the greek word katecheo (meaning to teach or instruct) which forms the english word “catechize”. Catechesis has been used to deliver Biblical doctrine since the birth of the church. Catechesis flourished between the second and sixth century in the church but would soon wane as the church fell to the indulgences of the world. However, there would be a resurgence of catechesis in the church shortly after the Protestant Reformation. The Reformers called for a return to this process of instruction in the church. The Baptist Catechism was first put forth in 1689 in Great Britain, modeled after the Westminster Shorter Catechism of 1646. Since that time many versions of catechism have been drafted but the practice of catechesis in the church has become mostly forgotten.
Why use Catechism?
There is a clear Biblical pattern of teaching doctrine by way of catechesis in scripture. To cite just a few, in Acts 2:42 we read, “They devoted themselves to the apostles teaching.” 2 Thessalonians says, “Stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us.” And in Ephesians 4: 13-14 we receive these words “attain to the unity of…the knowledge of the Son of God…so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about by every wind of doctrine.” When it comes to shaping the hearts of believers with Biblical doctrine and theology we can be assured that the practice of catechesis is more than just promising, it is practical and powerful.
My hope and prayer is that the journey of catechesis would prove to be fruitful for the church. We are going to have great fellowship and great unity as we embrace the powerful Word of our faith though catechism. Whether you are a new believer, a long time saint, or someone sorting through questions about Jesus, we hope that you will join us each Sunday night for Catechism. It’s going to be a blast!!
To God alone be the glory!