A systematic study of core theological truths enhances your Christian life, builds your faith, and serves to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. The Baptist Catechism, produced by Reformed Baptists of the late 17th century, provides a helpful guide to key doctrines and practical applications that every Christian should master. The document’s 118 questions and answers walk through important theological issues, highlight the 10 Commandments, and investigate the Lord’s Prayer. Scripture references accompany each question.
At our church, we use the Catechism for our Wednesday night Bible Study. You can view the entire Baptist Catechism here. For those on social media, I manage The Baptist Catechism Facebook page and post a question and answer from the catechism six days a week. I also encourage folks to use the Baptist Catechism as a daily devotional. To assist in this personal study and spiritual exercise, I’ve published The Baptist Catechism Journal, available at Amazon. Each page of the journal displays one question and answer followed by space to record your own thoughts and reflections.
Let the Baptist Catechism Guide Your Praise
For example, the first question and answer reads:
Q. 1. Who is the first and best of beings?
A. God is the first and best of beings.
The catechism authors penned the answer from the associated scripture passages
- Isaiah 44:6 Thus says the LORD, the King of Israel and his Redeemer, the LORD of hosts: “I am the first and I am the last; besides me there is no god.
- Psalm 8:1 O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth! You have set your glory above the heavens.
- Psalm 97:9 For you, O LORD, are most high over all the earth; you are exalted far above all gods.
To use this as your daily devotional you could write a paragraph of adoration and praise inspired by the scripture passages.
Let the Baptist Catechism Form Your Theology
As you work through the Baptist Catechism you will focus on a wide range of Biblical truths, beginning with God himself, the Word of God, the doctrine of the Trinity, the person and work of Christ, the doctrine of the church, etc. The catechism is heavy on the doctrine of salvation, and for good reason. The original framers prepared the document for use in family worship as parents lead their children to Christ. As you study the catechism, you will grow in your understanding and appreciation of these great truths.
Allow the content of each question to dictate the nature of your reflection.
Q. 92. What does God require of us, that we may escape His wrath and curse, due to us for sin?
A. To escape the wrath and curse of God due to us for sin, God requires of us faith in Jesus Christ, repentance unto life, with the diligent use of all the outward and ordinary means whereby Christ communicates to us the benefits of redemption.
To use this as a daily devotion, in the space provided you may want to begin by simply listing the requirements in a numbered list.
- Faith in Jesus Christ
- Repentance unto life
- Diligent use of outward and ordinary means
Three scripture passages are given with question 92, all from the Book of Acts. As you consider the passages, I find it helpful to ask myself, “What, in this passage, led the catechism authors to word the answer in the way they did?” Most of the time, the rational is obvious. The recognition helps to emphasize the point in your mind and heart. In this case Acts 20:21 mentions faith and repentance. Acts 16:30-31 stresses the necessity of faith, and Acts 17:30 focuses on the requirement of repentance.
Read the Context of Scripture Passages
You will probably also want to read each passage in its context. In this case, you will read about Paul’s preaching at the Pastors Conference down on the coast at Maletus Acts 20:17-38, Peter’s evangelistic encounter with the Philipian prison guard in Acts 16:25-40, and Paul’s street preaching in Athens Acts 17:16-34. Context is always key to a proper understanding of any given verse, but keep in mind the theological point being made by the catechism to keep your study focused.
Follow the Flow of the Questions and Answers
Notice that the next three questions flow from the three requirements listed in question 92. Recognizing the logical flow of the catechism has enhanced my study.
- 93. What is faith in Jesus Christ?
- 94. What is repentance unto life?
- 95. What are the outward and ordinary means whereby Christ communicates to us the benefits of redemption?
Above All, Pray
As you prayerfully work through the entire Baptist Catechism you will grow in your understanding of essential Christian doctrine. Using the catechism as a daily devotional, coupled with prayer, will establish a pattern of sanctification as you mature in the faith.
In addition to The Baptist Catechism Journal, you may also like this “Glorify God and Enjoy Him Forever” blank lined journal, also available at Amazon. Use the notebook to record your prayer requests and journal the prayer component of your daily devotional time. Or you could just use it for your everyday to-do lists, diary, self-reminders, grocery lists, and whatever else you need to write down. The cover will remind you of your “chief end.” Whatever the case, let me encourage you to make the Baptist Catechism part of your everyday life.