Westminster Shorter Catechism

89. How is the Word made effectual to salvation?

The Spirit of God maketh the reading, but especially the preaching of the Word, an effectual means of convincing and converting sinners, and of building them up in holiness and comfort, through faith, unto salvation. 1Neh. 8:8, 1 Cor. 14:24–25, Acts 26:18, Ps. 19:8, Acts 20:32, Rom. 15:4, 2 Tim. 3:15–17, Rom. 10:13–17, Rom. 1:16

91. How do the sacraments become effectual means of salvation?

The sacraments become effectual means of salvation, not from any virtue in them, or in him that doth administer them; but only by the blessing of Christ, 21 Pet. 3:21, Matt. 3:11, 1 Cor. 3:6–7 and the working of his Spirit in them that by faith receive them. 31 Cor. 12:13

99. What rule hath God given for our direction in prayer?

The whole Word of God is of use to direct us in prayer; 41 John 5:14 but the special rule of direction is that form of prayer which Christ taught his disciples, commonly called The Lord’ s prayer. 5Matt. 6:9–13, Luke 11:2–4

84. What doth every sin deserve?

Every sin deserveth God’ s wrath and curse, both in this life, and that which is to come. 6Eph. 5:6, Gal. 3:10, Lam. 3:39, Matt. 25:41

94. What is baptism?

Baptism is a sacrament, wherein the washing with water in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, 14Matt. 28:19 doth signify and seal our ingrafting into Christ, and partaking of the benefits of the covenant of grace, and our engagement to be the Lord’ s. 15Rom. 6:4, Gal. […]

100. What doth the preface of the Lord’ s prayer teach us?

The preface of the Lord’ s prayer, 16which is, Our Father which art in heaven, 19Matt. 6:9 teacheth us to draw near to God with all holy reverence and confidence, as children to a father, able and ready to help us; 17Rom. 8:15, Luke 11:13 and that we should pray with and for others. 18Acts […]

95. To whom is baptism to be administered?

Baptism is not to be administered to any that are out of the visible church, till they profess their faith in Christ, and obedience to him; 20Acts 8:36–38, Acts 2:38 but the infants of such as are members of the visible church are to be baptized. 21Acts 2:38–39, Gen. 17:10, Col. 2:11–12, 1 Cor. 7:14

82. Is any man able perfectly to keep the commandments of God?

No mere man since the fall is able in this life perfectly to keep the commandments of God, 22Eccles. 7:20, 1 John 1:8,10, Gal. 5:17 but doth daily break them in thought, word, and deed. 23Gen. 6:5, Gen. 8:21, Rom. 3:9–21, James 3:2–13

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