The hidden half of domestic violence
How to have eternal life
The Next Step
Most of you reading this now should have found your way here from the First Step and it is my prayer that you have just recently taken that first step by placing your trust in Jesus for salvation. This event is the only event that we know will cause the angels of heaven to rejoice.
Luke 15:7 I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.
Your choice to place your trust in Jesus is the most important decision you can ever make in your life. It is far more important then your choice over who to marry, what job you will do or where you will live. This one decision has changed your eternal destiny.
Still, you may have noticed, this decision was titled....the first step! There is a reason for this. Becoming a Christian is just one step...the first step in a long and very rewarding journey, a journey that will end at the throne of GOD at journey's end when Jesus will welcome you home.
To help you on this journey, I want to take some time to explain what should come next but I assure you, that if you follow these steps, it will be just as rewarding as the First Step you have already taken.
Many of you know that becoming a Christian is also referred to as "being born again" There is a very good reason for this. This "new birth" comes from the gospel of John chapter three where Jesus told Nicodemus "You must be born again"
There is a very good reason for
this analogy. Lets look at some comparisons between a new baby and a new
Christian. Of course we know a new baby needs to be taken care of,
to be feed, clothed, nurtured, educated and protected. We would never dream that a new baby would be born with a degree in their hand ready to go to work the next Monday would we?
One of the reasons I am so
concerned about this is that just as a baby is born for the purpose of growing
into a mature adult, a newborn Christian should also grow into a mature
Christian. The very sad fact is that many do not. Jesus told us a
story of the seeds in Matthew 13
1 The same day went Jesus out of the house, and sat by the sea side.
2 And great multitudes were gathered together unto him, so that he went into a ship, and sat; and the whole multitude stood on the shore.
3 And he spake many things unto them in parables, saying, Behold, a sower went forth to sow;
4 And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up:
5 Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth:
6 And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away.
7 And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them:
8 But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold.
In this story, the seed is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It is the First step that brought you to this page. In society, often the gospel falls on death ears., ears that will not listen. This is the wayside in which others may tell them that what they have been told was foolishness and they should not listen. Others may hear the gospel and seem to become a Christian by accepting what they heard but they rapidly go back to their previous way. In this situation, the seed fell on shallow ground and did not take root. I personally believe much of this is a result of people being told that all they need to do is accept the knowledge that Christ died for our sin. I contend that they do not apply it such as you have because it was made clear in the First Step.
A third group of new Christians soon find out the cares of this world overwhelm them and they soon give up in their new walk with the Lord. I do believe that if someone took the time to teach them the next step, this would happen.
It is my desire to have each of you be the fourth seed, the newborns that mature and reproduce. We are not given eternal life because of our good works, but we should do them because we are saved, just as a baby is not born because of any thing he or she has done but they should mature to be productive members of society.
How does one mature?
1: We need to Obey Any child knows the need to obey their parents. It is important to obey our Father too. I put this first because although a new born baby has to learn to obey, a newborn Christians first act of obedience should be Baptist There is nothing magical in this act but it should be done after we place our trust in Christ as it is OUR obedience that is important, not that of our parents Baptist represents our death burial and resurrection in the Lord and it is an outward sign that we do belong to HIM
As we mature in the LORD, we will learn that obedience is important for this maturity. God will never ask us to do anything HE does not enable us to do and HE never ask us to do anything that is not in our best interest. We are told that His sheep know His voice and will follow Him. Also in 1 John 3:22 we are told "Whatever we ask we receive of Him because we keep His commands and do those things that are pleasing to Him
2: We need nourishment. For a new Christian that nourishment is found in reading the Bible. I would suggest starting in the Gospel of John because it is one of the easiest books in the Bible to understand. The next book to read would be the Acts (it comes right after John) because it tells how more about the church and how it grew. It gives a good idea on what a new Christian should be doing. Then, I would suggest the book of Romans. It is a bit harder to understand but it can really give us a firm foundation. Understanding the Bible can be made easier if we follow some guidelines in understanding it. You can find these guidelines by clicking HERE!
3: We need Communication! Although we may not realize it, even a new born baby is able to communicate with those that love him. The more they mature, the more they do communicate. A Christian communicates with God by prayer. Prayer is simply talking to God just like we would talk to anyone else. He wants to know about all our cares and concerns. The Lord's Prayer ( Our Father who Art in Heaven) is simply a model prayer that we can use to guide us in our prayer. We learn we recognize who God is, that we can go to Him to ask for our needs but most of all, for the needs of others too. We can do this because we are His children and we do ask it in the name of Jesus and we can also thank in for answered prayer. We talk more about prayer HERE
11 Of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing ye are dull of hearing.
12 For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.
13 For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe.
14 But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.
4: We need to Educate:
Children go to school to learn the things they need to know to become mature adults. As Christians, we need have a form of education like a school It is the attendance of a church that teaches the Bible. There are several things to consider in finding a good church home.
The most important aspect is that it teaches the Biblically correct way to obtain salvation. If a church teaches we have to work for salvation, to be a member of that church or organization, it would be best to find another church. (It is important however to teach that we should do good works)
It is also important that the church teaches who Jesus is because according to John 5:28, we must understand who Jesus is to obtain salvation Any other Christ would be an antichrist or a false Christ.
A church should spend most of it's time teach Christians how to be better Christians. Part of this teaching is to educate their members on how to apply the Bible to their lives by teaching things such as the Fruit of the Spirit, telling what Spiritual gifts are and teachings on prayer,
It is also advisable for a church to teach it's members how to be able to give an answer for the hope that lays within us. We should be able to give some basic reasons the Bible is the Word of God, some reasons why we believe that Jesus is the Messiah and it is important to teach the proper Biblical response to many of our important social issues of today.
There is so much more to say but just as with a newborn we can not teach everything at once, we will be adding to this but meanwhile if you do have questions, please feel free to ask.
(please click above to vote for this site)
JUNE is Domestic Violence Against Men Awareness Month