Truth For The World

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Chapter 8 - Living the Christian Life

After we become a Christian, we are a new creature (2 Corinthians 5:17). We are in Christ and have access to all spiritual blessings (Ephesians 1:3). We have a change of mind and a change of life (Colossians 3:1-17).

Responsibilites in Living the Christian Life

First, we must study the Bible, God’s word. This is how we will grow spiritually. This is the way that God talks to us. Give diligence to present thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, handling aright the word of truth (2 Timothy 2:15). As newborn babes, long for the spiritual milk which is without guile, that ye may grow thereby unto salvation (1 Peter 2:2). Now these were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of the mind, examining the Scriptures daily, whether these things were so (Acts 17:11). For when by reason of the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need again that some one teach you the rudiments of the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of solid food. For every one that partaketh of milk is without experience of the word of righteousness; for he is a babe. But solid food is for fullgrown men, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern good and evil (Hebrews 5:12-14).

Second, we are to pray. This is the way we talk to God. The following verses tell us why and how we should pray. Pray without ceasing (1 Thessalonians 5:17). In nothing be anxious; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall guard your hearts and your thoughts in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:6-7). After this manner therefore pray ye. Our Father who art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so on earth. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And bring us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one (Matthew 6:9-11). The only thing in this model prayer that we can no longer use is the phrase “Thy kingdom come.” We cannot use that because the Lord’s kingdom has already come (Colossians 1:13; 1 Thessalonians 2:14; Revelation 1:9). Confess therefore your sins one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The supplication of a righteous man availeth much in its working. Elijah was a man of like passions with us, and he prayed fervently that it might not rain; and it rained not on the earth for three years and six months. And he prayed again; and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit (James 5:16-18).

Third, we are to assemble for worship. [N]ot forsaking our own assembling together, as the custom of some is, but exhorting one another; and so much the more, as ye see the day drawing nigh (Hebrews 10:25). Seek ye first his kingdom, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you (Matthew 6:33). If ye love me, ye will keep my commandments (John 14:15). As we noted in the lesson on the identity of the church, when we assemble for worship we sing, pray, teach, and on the Lord’s day, we partake of the Lord’s supper and contribute money to the support of the Lord’s work.

Fourth, we have the responsibility to teach the lost. Go ye therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit: teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I commanded you: and lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. (Matthew 28:19-20). And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to the whole creation. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that disbelieveth shall be condemned (Mark 16:15-16). And the Lord’s servant must not strive, but be gentle towards all, apt to teach, forbearing, in meekness correcting them that oppose themselves; if peradventure God may give them repentance unto the knowledge of the truth (2 Timothy 2:24-25). And there arose on that day a great persecution against the church which was in Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles...They therefore that were scattered abroad, went about preaching the word (Acts 8:1, 4).

Fifth, we must live a godly life. I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service. And be not fashioned according to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, and ye may prove what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God (Romans 12:1-2). For the grace of God hath appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us, to the intent that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly and righteously and godly in this present world (Titus 2:11-12). Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost its savor, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out and trodden under foot of men. Ye are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a lamp, and put it under the bushel, but on the stand; and it shineth unto all that are in the house. Even so let your light shine before men; that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven (Matthew 5:13-16). For the time past may suffice to have wrought the desire of the Gentiles, and to have walked in lasciviousness, lusts, winebibbings, revellings, carousings, and abominable idolatries: wherein they think strange that ye run not with them into the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you (1 Peter 4:3-4). Yea, and all that would live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution (2 Timothy 3:12).

Sixth, we must be faithful to Christ, enduring to the end. Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial among you, which cometh upon you to prove you, as though a strange thing happened unto you: but insomuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings, rejoice; that at the revelation of his glory also ye may rejoice with exceeding joy. If ye are reproached for the name of Christ, blessed are ye; because the Spirit of glory and the Spirit of God resteth upon you. For let none of you suffer as a murderer, or a thief, or an evil-doer, or as a meddler in other men’s matters: but if a man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God in this name (1 Peter 4:12-16). And let us not be weary in well-doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not (Galatians 6:9). Wherefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not vain in the Lord (1 Corinthians 15:58). Be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee the crown of life (Revelation 2:10).

Conclusion

Being baptized into Christ is not the end of our obedience, but the very beginning. We are born into the family of God. We must then grow in Christ. It is our hope this lesson will help each of us to better understand God’s will.

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