Orthodoxy is a word most Christians don’t use anymore, unless they belong to one of the many traditions within the Eastern Orthodox Christian Church. When it comes to the use of “orthodox” as a term to describe the soundness of one’s beliefs, we don’t often use it. Maybe its a word that sounds old-fashioned or outdated. Maybe it can be confused with the actual historical tradition.
Or, maybe we just don’t understand what it means anymore.
Orthodox comes from the Greek word orthodoxos, the meaning of which can be broken down as orthos (“right” or “straight”) and doxa (“teaching” or “opinion”). As it pertains to Christianity, then, orthodoxy refers to the correct teachings, or beliefs, of the faith.
But how often do you consult the foundational beliefs, sometimes referred to as “doctrines,” of orthodox Christianity? And even if you do, how much time do you spend really contemplating the significance of each one?
On this episode of The DBC Podcast, I sat down with regular co-host – and our resident heresy expert – Allen Taliaferro (DBC’s Outreach Pastor) to discuss some of the central and most foundational doctrines of the Christian faith, in order to examine the orthodox view of each. We were compelled to have this conversation based on a recent article in Christianity Today that detailed a recent study conducted by LifeWay Research regarding what various types of religious people – including “evangelical Christians” – think about specific doctrinal statements. The article focused on the alarming reality that a growing number of evangelical Christians seem to be undecided, or even disagree, with many orthodox statements that were supposedly established in the early centuries of the Christian Church. Some of these misunderstandings even reflect dangerous heresies that arose at particular times in history.
Our conversation is a detailed one, but certainly worth having. It is extraordinary to recognize just how important even one or two words of a sentence is when articulating or describing correct beliefs about who Jesus is, what took place on Calvary, and the kind of relationship we have with Holy Spirit. These and a few other issues come under our microscopes in this episode.
Please share your own thoughts with us in the Comments section below, or ask questions in case you still need something clarified (Allen and I tried our best to articulate on the fly, but neither of us believe we were 100% successful in expressing each doctrinal belief with full clarity.)
You can listen to the episode by clicking on the image below, which will direct you to our official iTunes page. There you can download the episode, stream it, or even subscribe to have each new episode automatically downloaded to your computer or smart device. Or, you can listen via the Soundcloud.com media player embedded at the bottom. (Also, don’t forget to download the free Dunwoody Baptist Church app from your smart device’s app store, where you can listen to every podcast episode this season, as well as all our podcasts, Sunday sermons, and other Bible study series.)
Click HERE to read the Christianity Today article detailing the LifeWay Research survey we were consulting in this episode