1. The Range of Ideas
Yes. Maybe. No.
Yes, working together, being reasonable, and thoughtful, we can narrow down what the essentials of faith are, define them, and clear up confusions, dogmas, and semantics. The Bible gives clear and concise doctrines on salvation and what the essentials of faith are. And the church is capable and willing to delve into this together to come to a universal and unified agreement on these important matters of the faith.
We can come to agreement on and establish what the essentials of faith are to some degree and among a large portion of Christians. However, there will always be the individuals, groups, and fringe sects that have ideologies and tenants of faith that will never agree with or fall in line with the majority or mainstream. We therefore need to temper our vigor and optimism with these unchangeable and unmoving barriers, guard against their infiltration into sound doctrine, and remove them from the flock as false teachers.
No, we can never firmly establish any one ideology on what specifically the essentials of faith are because the church is too splintered, petty, and lost. There are far too many fundamentally differing doctrines on salvation and what the essentials of faith are, such that we will never agree on them and will in fact continue to fight more and more vigorously against one another until Christ comes again. No one is willing to compromise on what they believe are the essentials of faith due to the utmost importance of this issue, which has eternal and everlasting consequences. The Bible is not clear enough on what the essentials of faith or salvation are to provide the church with a solid, universal, and unified path forward. Additionally, we can’t know for sure how things work after death, if there is an opportunity for salvation after this life and before heaven or hell. We just cannot know.