The question came up in yet another long and fraught debate about the divinity of Jesus whether belief that Jesus is God is required for salvation. Reference was made to an article by C. Michael Patton, who thinks that the following beliefs are essential for salvation: belief in God, in Christ’s deity and humanity, that “you are a sinner in need of God’s mercy”, that Christ died on the cross and was raised bodily, and that faith in Christ is necessary—in other words, you have to believe in belief. He comments:
These are the most essential doctrines of all. This includes what every Christian should always be willing to die for. In essence, if someone does not believe the doctrines that are “essential for salvation,” they are not saved.
To my mind this is a standard, if rather rigorously worded, rationalist-theological summary of what is required for personal salvation. It takes the form of a set of abstracted propositions parenthetically and uncritically supported by proof texts. It assumes that salvation is primarily an existential-individual concern rather than a historical-corporate concern.