Advice For New Christians
So you just recently got saved? Wonderful! I am so happy for you. Welcome to the family of God. I suppose you are feeling ecstatic at this point and think that life is great and exciting. You are probably optimistic about your new life in Christ and can't imagine that ever changing, right? Well, I don't want to take away any of your joy, but I do want you to know some things that could be of great benefit to you in the future.
Perhaps you want to know more about living the Christian life, and no one has explained that in detail for you. Well, that is what I'm going to do in this brief article. I want you to know what you can do to stay in God's will and live a productive and happy life as a Christian. Sound like what you need? Great! Read on and let it sink in. May God be glorified by my efforts and your response.
Living a holy life involves a few things. I want to write just a little on these things and let you think about them and read the scriptures I will include along with them. That way you will know I'm not just making it up. Ready to begin? Ok, here we go.
The first thing I want you to understand is the importance of prayer and Bible study. It is important to pray and study your Bible daily, or if God inspires you to do it several times a day then do it several times a day. Just make sure you do it. I've listed some scriptures below from the NIV Bible.
Ephesians 6:18 - And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.
Philippians 4:6 - Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
Colossians 4:2 - Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.
1 Timothy 2:1 - I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone...
There are more Bible verses on prayer but I think you get the idea, right? God wants us to pray.
As for Bible study, it is a good idea to do it daily. It is also necessary to learn how to understand the Bible and put things in perspective. I recommend a lot of Bible study. It will take some time to digest it all, but that's alright - it is worth the effort. What does the Bible itself say about Bible study?
Acts 17:11 - Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.
Psalms 119:105 - "Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path."
2 Timothy 2:15 - Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. (New King James Version)
Yes, Bible study is important. It helps us stay on track.
Another important thing is regularly fellowshipping with other Christians to worship and learn. Most Christians do this by church attendance, even though the Bible does not tell us to attend a building called a church. In fact, when the New Testament was written there was no such things as churches yet. They came much later. People normally gathered in homes to pray, study scripture, encourage one another, and to worship.
Hebrews 10:25 - Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another...
So, whether you have a great little Bible Study you can attend or you want to attend a regular church either will be fine as long as it meets the criteria listed below. Here are some things to consider.
* Make sure the pastor (or leader of your Bible Study) doesn't put down the Bible. Perhaps you didn't know that some pastors and teachers do that, but sadly it is true. Generally these preachers and teachers will tell you that only the King James Bible is the true Word of God and all others are perversions of the scripture. Beware of these deceivers. They cause division in the body of Christ and will cause you to lose your focus. It is important for a pastor or Bible teacher to elevate King Jesus, and not King James.
* Beware of churches that are too legalistic. They should not give you a list of do's and don'ts to follow. You are free in Christ. Don't allow anyone to put you in bondage to their rules.
* Make sure salvation is taught correctly - salvation is by grace through putting your faith in the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ.
You can ask the pastor these questions discreetly, perhaps in an email or private discussion. If he is offended by your asking him these questions then you should leave that church; his objections will tell you there is something wrong.
It is also important to be involved in some kind of evangelism. It can be done in different ways. For example, I mostly do it via the internet through this website, but you can do it in whatever way seems best for you. It can be done in person, over the phone, via email, or instant messages. The important thing is to be willing and able to share your faith with others.
In conclusion, the best advice I can give a new Christian is to pray often, study your Bible, gather with other Christians often, and tell others about Christ. God will bless you for it.
Rev. Steve Holder