Lesson 5 - Doctrinal Orientation

Doctrinal Orientation

“Thy Word have I hid in my heart (the thinking portion of the soul), that I might not sin against Thee.” (Psalm 119:11)


The word “doctrinal” means pertaining to a teaching, a body of principles or a branch of knowledge. “Orientation” means familiarization with a particular person, thing or field of knowledge. Doctrinal orientation, therefore, means to familiarize oneself with the teachings and principles of the Word of God.

We believe that the Bible is inerrant and infallible in its original form. We believe that God so directed the writers of Scripture that His complete and coherent word was transferred to the pages of Scriptures in its original form without altering the literary style or personality of the author. “ …Thou hast magnified thy Word above all thy name.” (Psalm 138:2)

Bible doctrine is the word of God the Father. (Hebrews 4:12) It is the mind of Christ

(I Corinthians 2:16) and the voice of God the Holy Spirit. (Hebrews 3:7) The Word of God is profitable for doctrine (the body of teaching that we believe), for reproof (the Word of God is a mirror into our souls so that we can evaluate ourselves before God), for correction (once we evaluate ourselves and find there needs to be corrective action, the Word of God gives the correct course of action), and for instruction in righteousness (once we discover the right course of action, the Word of God gives us a blueprint of how to accomplish our goal). (II Timothy 3:16)

How We Learn the Bible

The provision of physical and spiritual needs is one of God’s grace blessings to all believers regardless of their spiritual status. Another of these grace blessings that God has provided for us is the freedom and the opportunity to be taught Bible doctrine. We learn Bible doctrine under the filling (control and guidance) ministry of God the Holy Spirit. (John 16:12-13) God has given to the local church certain men with the gift of pastor/teacher for the communication of doctrine, systematically. (Ephesians 4:11-16) We are also commanded to spend time in personal study of God’s Word. (II Timothy 2:15, Isaiah 28:9-10) It is important to remember that no one passage of Scripture stands alone. We must always study by comparing Scripture with Scripture. (II Peter 1:20-21)

Commands to Study and Apply Bible Doctrine

1)    Study to show yourself… II Timothy 2:15

2)    Grow in the grace… II Peter 3:18

3)    Be not conformed to this world… Romans 12:1-2

4)    Take my yoke and learn… Matthew 11:29

5)    Let this mind be in you… Philippians 2:5

6)    …by reason of use… Hebrews 5:12-14

7)    Man shall not live by bread alone… Matthew 4:4

8)    Let the word of Christ… Colossians 3:16

9)    Thy Word have I hid… Psalm 119:11

Synonyms for Bible Doctrine

1)    The Faith (what is believed)- I Corinthians 16:13

2)    Truth- John 8:32, 16:13, Ephesians 4:15, II Timothy 2:15

3)    Word- Hebrews 4:12, Psalm 119:101

4)    Commandments- Psalm 119:96,98,102

5)    Knowledge- Proverbs 30:3, II Peter 3:18

6)    Sword- Hebrews 4:12. Ephesians 6:17

7)    Judgments- Psalm 119:106, Romans 11:3

8)    Food- Jeremiah 15:16, I Corinthians 3:2, Hebrews 5:12-13,Psalm 19:10

9)    Covenant- Jeremiah 22:9

10)   Precepts- Psalm 119:100, Isaiah 28:10

11)    Law- Psalm 119:97

12)    Testimonies- Psalm 119:99

13)    Statutes- Psalm 119:112

14)    Mind of Christ- Philippians 2:5, I Corinthians 2:16

15)    Scripture- II Timothy 3:16-17

16)    Wisdom- Proverbs 4:7

17)    Understanding- Proverbs 4:7


Results of Studying and Applying Bible Doctrine


1)    Confidence in your salvation- I John 2:3, 5:13, Isaiah 33:6

2)    Knowledge of God’s plan for your life- John 7:17; John 15:7

3)    Stability in your Christian life- Isaiah 33:6; Ephesians 4:14

4)    Divine Viewpoint Thinking- Romans 12:1-2

5)    Hope (confidence) for the future- Colossians 1:27; Titus 3:7

6)    Spiritual maturity- II Timothy 3:16-17, Ephesians 4:12-15

7)    Personal love for God- I John 4:7-21

8)    Impersonal love for all mankind- John 15:12-17

9)   Sharing the happiness of God- John 15:10-11

10)    Occupation with Christ- Hebrews 12:1-2; Ephesians 3:19

11)    Grace orientation- Ephesians 2:8-10; James 4:6

The False Doctrine of Satan

“For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel, for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore, it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.” (II Corinthians 11:13-15)

Satan is the master counterfeiter and it is his goal to deceive the believer into believing false doctrine. Many believers fall into his trap by being gullible (easily deceived, cheated, tricked or duped). The opposite of being gullible is having discernment based on the learned, believed and applied wisdom from God’s Word. Satan has his own preachers and evangelists who he uses to deceive, cheat and trick. (II Corinthians 11:13-15; Galatians 1:6-9) One tactic Satan uses, as a counterfeit of the ministry of the Holy Spirit, is emotion. (Romans 16:18) It is the job of each of us as Christians to learn to discern what is true and what is counterfeit. (I John 4:1) It is possible to do this only through growth in the Word of God. (II Peter 3:18)

If Satan can get the believer to ignore the Word of God or distort the Word of God, then he has gained a victory. If Satan can keep you distracted long enough by getting you involved with the details of life, he can influence you. He uses a vast army of demons (which are actually fallen angels), this world system with its Human Viewpoint Thinking, and your own sin nature to influence you to neglect the Word of God. Ignoring the Word of God means that you are ignoring your spiritual life.

Satan is attacking you where it is the most effective, in your thinking. This is why every time you worry, fear, feel guilty, hate, slander, feel self-pity, malign or commit any other mental attitude sin, you are lining up with Satan’s agenda. This is why the carnal (out of fellowship) believer is called “an enemy of the cross of Christ.” Philippians 3:17-19)

The Bible describes Satan as a roaring lion going about to devour anyone he can. Out of fellowship believers are one of his primary targets because he wants to keep you out of fellowship permanently. Only your own volition can halt the strategies of Satan by choosing to use the doctrine that is in your soul to keep advancing. (I Peter 5:8; Ephesians 6:11)

Do not let Satan and his demons keep you from fulfilling God’s plan, purpose and will for your life. You must determine that you are not going to allow anything to “break your stride” in the spiritual race of life. You can do this only by allowing the Holy Spirit to control and guide your life. This, as you know, means using God’s recovery system: rebound and keep moving. Satan will try every trick in the book to distract you from learning, believing and applying Bible doctrine. (II Corinthians 2:11; I Corinthians 9:24-25)


Christ’s Reliance on Bible Doctrine


Jesus Christ is the unique person of the universe. He is different from God in that He is man, and different from man in that He is God. In His deity, He possesses all the attributes of God, being co-equal and co-eternal with the Father and the Holy Spirit. (John 1:1-14; Romans 1:2-5; Philippians 2:5-11; I Timothy 3:16; Hebrews 2:14)

Christ, as deity, is omniscient. He never needs to learn anything because He has always known all things. Bible doctrine is the very mind of Christ. (I Corinthians 2:16) But in His humanity, He was born a baby who needed to learn doctrine in the same manner as we do. Jesus was also a perfect child and subjected Himself to his parents and teachers. (Luke 2:46-52)

Jesus continually used the doctrine that He had learned to sustain Himself throughout the trials and tribulations of life. When attacked by others, He used the doctrine and principles of the Word of God to endure the adversity. He also used the doctrine He had learned to combat the tests from Satan. And He used the doctrine in His soul to teach others. (Matthew 4:1-11; John 5:16-39; 6:59-60; 7:16-24)

Even during the six illegal trials of Christ and while He was on the Cross, He quoted Scripture. (Matthew 26:64; 27:46; Mark 14:62; Luke 23:46; John 19:28-30) The very last thing recorded that Jesus said was a quote from Psalms 31:5. Since Jesus used Bible doctrine throughout His life, His ministry and even His death, shouldn’t we follow His example? To follow the example of Christ, you must study the Word of God and apply it to every facet of your life. God’s Word has the potential to sustain you, strengthen you and stabilize you, if you chose to allow it to do so. (Matthew 4:4; Hebrews 4:12; Isaiah 33:6)

Bible doctrine will set you free. “And you shall know the truth (doctrine) and the truth (doctrine) shall make you free.” (John 8:32) “I will walk in freedom: for I seek thy doctrine.” (Psalms 119:45)