Midrand Chapel has a "Foundations of the Faith" course aimed at grounding new believers and new members in the essential foundations of the Christian faith. Each of the 20 lessons in this course, is based on a key passage of Scripture, and is designed to be done together with a mature believer, as further explained below:
This introduction will provide an overview of the “Foundations of the Faith” course and help you know how to derive the greatest benefit from it.
2: BIBLE STUDY - 2 TIM 3:1-17
Read 2 Tim 3:1-17
Why sound doctrine matters (3:1-9)
The letter of 2 Timothy was written near the end of Paul’s life as he was in prison awaiting trial and execution. In 2 Tim 4:6-7 Paul reminds Timothy that he has run his race and ran it well and he is writing to Timothy to encourage him to do the same.
In 3:1-19 he warns Timothy about the godlessness that will characterize the last days.
But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. 2 For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, 4 treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God,
All of this will come about because people will no longer “endure sound teaching, but having itching ears, they will accumulate for themselves teaching to suite their own passions” (2 Tim 4:3). It is therefore essential that the true Church teach sound doctrine and that its members learn it and live it out in their daily lives. Sound doctrine guards us against deception (3:13), keeps us from sin, points us to Christ, and therefore directs us on the pathway that leads to life.
The Foundations of the Faith (FOF) course is designed to help you lay a solid foundation on which you can build your Christian life. It covers the foundational doctrines of the Christian faith, grounding each lesson in a key passage of Scripture so that your doctrinal foundation is laid clearly and firmly in the soil of God’s Word. Memory verses are provided which summarize the teaching of each lesson and allow you to commit it to memory for further meditation and future use.
Sound doctrine is truth that leads to transformation(3:10-13)
The biblical view of sound doctrine is more than a correct intellectual understanding of God and His Word. For our doctrine to be sound, it must not only impact how we think about God, but how we feel about Him, how we worship Him, obey Him and love Him. Notice how Paul points Timothy to “his conduct, aim in life, faith, patience, love, steadfastness...” (3:10). What Timothy must learn and emulate is a way of life. He must learn the truth in such a way that it will impact the way he lives out that truth in daily life.
Each FOF lesson has personal questions scattered throughout, and an “application” section which are designed to help you apply what you are learning to your daily life. Take time to answer these questions carefully and to discuss your answers with another mature believer.
Sound Doctrine is taught and modeled (3:14-15)
Paul urges Timothy to “continue in what you have learned and believed, knowing from whom you have learned it” (3:14).His solid grounding in the truth came not only from the truth of what he had learned, but the integrity of those from whom he has learned it. God has designed for sound doctrine to preserved and propagated in and through the local church, and hence in the context of a community of faith in which believers are accountable to one another, learn from one another, and help one another to live out such doctrine.
Although you could work through the FOF series on your own, or in a “class” setting, it is designed with a personal, mentoring relationship in mind. To get the most out of these lessons you should make time to discuss them with another mature believer who can not only help clarify your understanding, but who will provide a model for living them out. Timothy was not only mentored by Paul, but by other godly believers including his grandmother and mother (2 Tim 1:5). Through the FOF series, you should not only build a deeper relationship with a godly mentor, but become more fully integrated into the local church and therefore connected to other believers who can also help and encourage you in your Christian walk.
Sound doctrine equips you for ministry to others (2 Tim 3:16-17)
This passage climaxes with a reminder of the divine origin, power and sufficiency of God’s Word. The Scripture is not like any other book or writing – it is the very Word of God, the same Word which spoke creation into existence and continues to uphold it to the present day (Heb 1:3). Even the most mature believer would be powerless to help anyone grow, even the least bit toward godliness, if God had not entrusted us with His inspired Word which makes us “competent, equipped for every good work” (3:17).
Not everyone is “competent” and “equipped” to use the Scriptures to teach and train others in “righteousness.” Rather, it is the “man of God,” the one who has first been trained by the Scriptures themselves, the one who is consistently applying them in their own life, who is then equipped to train others. This FOF series is designed to not only ground you in the foundational doctrines of the Christian faith, but to equip you to do the same for others.
May God’s grace by multiplied toward you, as you seek Him in and through His Word!
The following questions will help you assess your readiness and commitment to completing the FOF course together with a more mature believer:
Student: ________________________________________________(name,contact No.)
Meeting when:___________________________ where:__________________
Teacher/ Mentor: _____________________________________________(Name, Contact No.)
Introduction – How to get the most out of this course
The Christian Life (Rom 12) – What is the Christian life all about?
Church Membership (1 Cor 12:12-26) – Why Church membership is important
Who is God?
The revelation of God (Ps 19) – General and special revelation
The nature and being of God (Is 40) – Introduction to attributes of God
The sovereignty of God (Ps 139) – Everyone is accountable to God
The person and work of Christ (Col 1:15-23) – The uniqueness of Christ
The Trinity (various) – An essential Christian doctrine often misunderstood
What is Salvation?
The creation and fall of man (Gen 2-3) – The purpose and problem of humanity
The total depravity of man (Rom 3:9-20) – Why we cannot save ourselves
The free gift of God (Eph 2:1-10) – How God saves us
The call to follow Christ (Mk 8:27-38) – How I should respond to the gospel
The perseverance of the Saints (2 Pet 1:3-11) – How I can be sure I am a Christian
How do I live the Christian life?
The fight against sin (Eph 4:17-32) – Putting off sin and putting on Christ
The fullness of the Spirit (Gal 5:16-25) – The Ministry of the Spirit
The disciplines of grace (Acts 2:41-47) – Cultivating daily devotion to Christ
The commandment to love (1 Cor 13:1-9) – Living selflessly
The reality of trials (Rom 8:28-30; James 1) – Dealing with difficulties in the Christian life
The witness of the saints (1 Pet 3:8-17)– Being a witness with your life and your lips
The mission of the church (Matt 28:18-20) – Reaching the nations for Christ
You may freely download and use the course materials below without modification. Should you wish to modify them, please contact us so that we can also benefit from any positive changes you make.
Our FOF course notes are currently being updated, but the following drafts are available:
FOUNDATIONS OF THE FAITH