I’d like to know: What the heck is a non-essential doctrine? I keep hearing this from all different kinds of people about all different kinds of biblical teaching. We especially hear this when telling others about the wonderful blessings of including His Law in the believer’s daily walk. It seems that to the non-essential people “salvation” is the only essential doctrine. Salvation, of course, is defined by raised hands and going forward in a church or tent meeting, and then giving money while attending their church. That’s it. That’s their “essential” doctrine. Essential for keeping the money flowing, I guess. Essential for making notches in their Bibles or on the crucifix at the front of the church. Essential for building the pastor’s job into a multimillion dollar empire with a vacation house in the Bahamas and a nice Mercedes to go back and forth to church.
I’ve looked and looked in the Word, and I can find no “non-essential” doctrine. God doesn’t have one. I can find “weightier” and “lighter” commands, but the Bible says they are all important. Essential even. Every single word from His mouth as near as I can tell is “essential.” What possesses people to sit in judgment on God’s Word and label much of it non-essential?
Now, there are many doctrines of men I could count as non-essential, including the doctrine of non-essential doctrine. So much of what men teach sandbags God’s Word and directs us away from it. It’s time people ask, “What is essential about the drivel you are teaching and preaching from your high and mighty God’s-Word-denying pulpit?”
God has given us space to “choose this day whom we will serve” as Joshua says (Joshua 24:15). But those who are born naturally also have to be adopted into God’s family no matter their family tree. As Jesus says in John chapter 3, everyone must be “born again” to enter God’s kingdom. This spiritual birth or adoption is much more binding than natural birth.
I was adopted at 14 by my own request. I asked my natural parents to relinquish their parental rights and signed my own adoption papers with my new family. So I understand the concept very well. Adoption means that the former family is not yours anymore. You have a new one. Even your birth certificate is changed to reflect the change in families.
I don’t agree with people who were adopted young and later search for their birth parents. Birth parents that let go of their offspring are just egg donors and sperm donors to me. They have nothing to do with the blood, sweat and tears of raising a child. So in my view they are not really the parents. Adoption is permanent, and at the age I was adopted I had the privilege of choosing a new family. They are more than merely genetic influences for me.
When we are adopted into God’s family, it is the same. We make the choice, and it’s permanent. God takes us as His children, with all of our faults and failures. He chooses us even if we are not the model child. Like my adoptive parents, He sticks with us through our teenage years when we know everything but are still dumber than rocks. He is patient, loving, and kind, and requires that we live by the rules of His household. We are treated just like any other son or daughter, protected and nourished and disciplined to stay on the right path.
From Whole Bible Christianity chapter 2 Salvation