.K.! NEW CHRISTIAN....WHAT NOW? by Elmer G. Magnussen
If you are a new Christian, there are some very
important things you need to
know. First, you need to know exactly what has happened to you. Second,
you need to know God's provisions for your future growth and service to Him.
The entire world today is seeking wisdom! Education is prevalent in every
city. Literally thousands of young and old alike are attending universities.
But how many of them really know the meaning of wisdom? Wisdom is seeing
things from God's point of view.
The following testimony is that of a man by the name of Andre.
I WAS IN PRISON, AND YOU CAME TO ME (Matthew 25:36c)
"My testimony to my Christian Brothers and believers in Jesus Christ our
Savior. I want to thank the Lord for saving me from the life I was once
leading. First of all, I was living in darkness and I thought that I truly
loved the way I was.
1 Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the
LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall
not eat of every tree of the garden? 2 And the woman said unto the serpent,
We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: 3 But of the fruit of
the tree which [is] in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not
eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die. 4 And the serpent said
unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: 5 For God doth know that in the day
ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods,
knowing good and evil.
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Today's Bible Study
In chapter 12:1,2 we see that Christian service and
In chapter 12:1,2 we see that Christian service and
living must begin with personal dedication to the Lord.
The person who fails is one who has not surrendered
himself completely to Christ. In daily yielding our
bodies to Him, having our minds renewed by the Word, and
surrendering our wills through prayer and obedience,
Christians can become strong in the area of service for
the Lord. We, as Christians, are either conformers,
living for and like the world, or transformers, daily
becoming more like Christ. II Corinthians 3:18 tells us
we are transformed (transfigured) as we allow the Spirit
of God to reveal Christ through the Word of God to us.
It is only when the believer is thus dedicated to the
Lord that he can know the will of God for his life.
Chapters 12--16 could be entitled "service"
chapters. At the end of these chapters Paul tells us how
to put our Christian learning into practice. True
Christian service and living must begin with personal
dedication to the Lord, and then an honest evaluation of
the spiritual gifts the believer possesses. Paul tells
us that we should not think of ourselves more highly
than our spiritual gifts warrant. If a man is called to
pastor, God will reveal it as he uses his gifts in the
assembly. Our gifts differ, but they all come from the
Spirit and are to be used for the glory of God. Just as
we are saved "by grace, through faith," so we are to
exercise our spiritual gifts according to the measure of
faith and according to the grace He gives us. Chapter 12
also lists the seven basic ministries. Every person fits
into one of these seven ministries. In which category
are you? Prophecy, defined in I Corinthians 14:3;
ministry, which is literally "deaconing," and may refer
to that office; teaching, according to II Timothy 2:1,2
is very important; exhorting, which suggests urging
people to serve the Lord and be faithful to Him; giving,
which should be done in singleness of heart, out of pure
motives; ruling, pertaining to the government of the
local church (I Timothy 3:4,12); and showing mercy, the
personal ministry to those in need.
The best Christian is a Christian who is serving
God. Chapter 13 indicates that the best citizen is a
Christian citizen. Though the church should not get
involved in politics, the individual believer is
certainly to use his God-given privileges as a citizen.
Though Christians have been called out of this
world, according to John 15:18, they are still
responsible to the authority that is set over them. Men
like Joseph and Daniel were able to perform wonderful
ministries, even in heathen governments. The examples
given to us by such men should be followed by us today.
To disobey or resist the authority over us is to
encourage judgment. Government authorities are agents of
God for good, and good citizenship is required of all
Chapter 14 deals with the problems of
questionable things in the lives of Christians. In our
churches today we have differences of opinion concerning
questionable practices, such as worldly amusements, and
Paul tells us how to face and solve those differences.
We are not given a list of rules, but Paul does lay down
basic principles that Christians can follow. One way a
person can tell whether something is right or wrong is
by asking himself the question, "Am I fully convinced?"
If there is ever conviction against a thing, then it is
definitely wrong! Another question that can be asked is,
"Am I doing this as unto the Lord?" If God cannot be
glorified in what you are doing, then it is wrong!
Another question is, "Will it stand the test of the
Judgment Seat of Christ?" All Christians will stand
before the Judgment Seat of Christ and will give an
account of what they did in the flesh. Another question,
and a very important one, is, "Am I causing others to
stumble?" "When I involve myself in things that are
questionable, or things I am not sure of, will some
other Christian see me and will I become a
stumblingblock to them?" Another question, "Am I doing
this completely by faith?" If there is any doubt, then
we are lacking faith, and that is sin. Finally, "Am I
pleasing myself, or others?".
When questionable things arise, use these
questions to evaluate your true intentions. After
honestly checking yourself on each question, I believe
your actions and deeds will meet God's test.