Are You Serious About Being A Christian?

Written by Stephen Kingery

Are you serious about BEING a Christian? Sometimes I see people who profess to being Christian but I don't see Christian fruit developing in their lives. I know thatrepparttar Bible teaches us that we are not to judge others, and I certainly don't mean it in that respect. However,repparttar 140696 Bible also teaches us that if we are a Christian, if we haverepparttar 140697 indwelling ofrepparttar 140698 Holy Spirit within us, then specific fruits (fruits ofrepparttar 140699 Spirit) will be evident in our lives. (See Galatians 5:22 and Ephesians 5:9) If we don't seerepparttar 140700 evidence of these fruits, then we wonder ifrepparttar 140701 person is serious about his/her Christian walk.

I would like to share with you four Scriptures which I feel will help you and I to be more serious about being a Christian. There are many lessons which can be drawn from these four Scriptures. It is my prayer that this lesson will give you strength to carry on in your daily Christian walk.

"And if it seems evil to you to serverepparttar 140702 Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whetherrepparttar 140703 gods which your fathers served that were onrepparttar 140704 other side ofrepparttar 140705 River, orrepparttar 140706 gods ofrepparttar 140707 Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serverepparttar 140708 Lord." (Joshua 24:15) This is one of my favorite verses because I feel that Christians have to choose daily whom they will serve. The real meat ofrepparttar 140709 verse is, "choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve. . . But as for me and my house, we will serverepparttar 140710 Lord." The society in which we live has so many areas that try to keep us from servingrepparttar 140711 Lord. Forrepparttar 140712 Christian today, all too often it is a daily choice as to whom we will serve.

I am not speaking of salvation here. Hopefully for you that has already been taken care of. I am speaking of serving God. So what does that mean? It means giving 100% of your life to Christ and let Him control it. It means not letting your job, money, friends, family, pleasure seeking, social status, etc. get inrepparttar 140713 way of your serving God. It means forsaking any and all of those things mentioned above if it interferes with your relationship with God. It means letting Christian ideals guide your relationships with your boss, family, friends, business dealings, etc. And it means that when we are confronted with a decision, our first reaction is asking ourselves (or fellow Christians) "What would Jesus have me do in this situation?"

Serving God is really having Him inrepparttar 140714 forefront of our minds at all times. Always being conscience of our thoughts, words and actions to make certain that they are consistent withrepparttar 140715 teachings of Christ andrepparttar 140716 New Testament writers. It is doingrepparttar 140717 Christian thing, even if it hurts! It is striving to be like Christ in every aspect of our lives.

After we have committed our lives to Christ and strive to really serve Him, what next. Jesus tells us inrepparttar 140718 book of Matthew, "But seek firstrepparttar 140719 kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you." (Matthew 6:33)

How can we serve God without seeking Him? It is really impossible to serve Him without seeking Him. So, if you are trying to "serve" Him and not "seek" Him you will fail. The very act of serving Him means you must seek Him.

How do we seek God? First, we must throw offrepparttar 140720 phoniness of playing Christian. Making an appearance at church once a week is not seeking God. It is much, much more than that. Seeking God means that we have a very active Bible Study program. Not just attending Sunday School and going throughrepparttar 140721 lesson. Having a plan to studyingrepparttar 140722 Bible. Seeking out good quality Bible study aids and literature to help us in our study. Develop a plan to read throughrepparttar 140723 Bible in a year. But even then you are not through. Study various topics, events, eras, books, miracles, prophecies, etc. No matter how old one gets, they should never stop studyingrepparttar 140724 Bible.

We must also seek God through a daily prayer time. Pick a particular time ofrepparttar 140725 day in which you can be alone with God. Tell Him in an honest straightforward manner your prayer concerns, what your worried about, troubles you may be having, people you want to pray for, and so forth. And don't forget to praise God in your prayers. Tell Him how much you love Him. Thank Him for allrepparttar 140726 blessings you have received and forrepparttar 140727 answered prayers. Praise Him and glorify Him in your prayers.

We need to be faithful to worship services. Not just when you feel like attending. We should have an attitude that we will be in worship service unless it is practically impossible to be there. Unless you have a serious illness that should be about 95% ofrepparttar 140728 time. And in conjunction with that we should be faithful torepparttar 140729 Lord's Supper each Lord's Day.

Don't Quench The Spirit

Written by Stephen Kingery

I started this ministry because I see something happening in our churches that is a deep concern to me. There are far too many of our members who attend worship services who are not, and are not becoming, grounded inrepparttar word of God. I also see many members who are drifting away fromrepparttar 140695 fellowship ofrepparttar 140696 church. If their faith was strong and their love for God mature, I don't think this would happen.

Also,repparttar 140697 reasons people give for staying away fromrepparttar 140698 fellowship is puzzling to me. It seems that whenrepparttar 140699 slightest occurrence of some out-of-the-way comment that tends to hurt someone's feelings is made, people simply "quit church." Does this mean that they no longer want to be a Christian? That is certainly whatrepparttar 140700 term "quit church" implies. I've often said that I can't imagine what any person could do to make me want to end my relationship with my Heavenly Father.

The Holy Spirit is a real and vibrant part of every true Christian. In order for a true Christian to "quit church," there must be a tremendous quenching ofrepparttar 140701 Spirit. Let's take a look atrepparttar 140702 Holy Spirit specifically as He relates torepparttar 140703 life of a Christian. In this study I hope that we can learn more about whatrepparttar 140704 Holy Spirit does, or at least should be allowed to do, in our daily Christian lives.

"And I will prayrepparttar 140705 Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever, evenrepparttar 140706 Spirit of truth, whomrepparttar 140707 world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you." (John 14:16,17) Jesus told us that we would haverepparttar 140708 indwelling ofrepparttar 140709 Holy Spirit, that He would be in us, actually living in us. This is an awesome thought indeed,repparttar 140710 Holy Spirit being in us and a part of us. However, He does not impose His will on us. We are not robots occupied by a "spirit" going about doing whatrepparttar 140711 "spirit" wants us to do. Quiterepparttar 140712 contrary is true. We still have a free will, fully able to exercise it at our discretion.

The Holy Spirit is living with us to be a "Helper," someone to guide and direct us as we strive to live a Christian life. If we allowrepparttar 140713 Spirit to serve as our guide, He will give us those answers to questions that sometimes we seek. Onrepparttar 140714 other hand, we can quenchrepparttar 140715 Spirit and not allow Him to help us in this manner. The Apostle Paul says in Romans, "For those who live according torepparttar 140716 flesh set their minds onrepparttar 140717 things ofrepparttar 140718 flesh, but those who live according torepparttar 140719 Spirit,repparttar 140720 things ofrepparttar 140721 Spirit." (Romans 8:5) What we allow to occupy our minds determinesrepparttar 140722 extent to whichrepparttar 140723 Spirit can serve as our Helper.

If we dwell onrepparttar 140724 negative, always looking for a fault in someone or inrepparttar 140725 body as a whole, we are not thinking of things ofrepparttar 140726 Spirit. If we dwell on soap operas, secular music, movies, our jobs, money, and a host of other worldly things, we are quenchingrepparttar 140727 Spirit. As we allow these worldly concerns, activities, and things to take up all of our waking time, we have no time for things ofrepparttar 140728 Spirit. Our minds and daily schedules are full of worldly activities and these things shove thoughts ofrepparttar 140729 Spirit out. If, onrepparttar 140730 other hand, we dwell onrepparttar 140731 fruits ofrepparttar 140732 Spirit, Bible study, prayer, helpingrepparttar 140733 needy, visitingrepparttar 140734 sick, servingrepparttar 140735 church, andrepparttar 140736 like, we are allowingrepparttar 140737 Spirit to work in our lives. The fruits ofrepparttar 140738 Spirit become more noticeable in our lives.

What arerepparttar 140739 fruits ofrepparttar 140740 Spirit? "Butrepparttar 140741 fruit ofrepparttar 140742 Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law." (Galatians 5:22,23)

We really only have two choices; to set our minds on things ofrepparttar 140743 Spirit, or things ofrepparttar 140744 world. Paul puts it this way, "For he who sows in his flesh will ofrepparttar 140745 flesh reap corruption, but he who sows torepparttar 140746 Spirit will ofrepparttar 140747 Spirit reap everlasting life." (Galatians 6:8) As we allow our lives to be corrupted byrepparttar 140748 things ofrepparttar 140749 world, we quenchrepparttar 140750 Spirit. Eventually, when we have quenchedrepparttar 140751 Spirit so long, getting back into a right relationship with God is all but impossible.

There is another aspect of allowingrepparttar 140752 Spirit to work in our lives that is equally important. We must individually work forrepparttar 140753 unity ofrepparttar 140754 church. We say that we believe thatrepparttar 140755 church was instituted by Christ, and that we strive forrepparttar 140756 restoration ofrepparttar 140757 church both in unity and practice on a New Testament basis. But how often do we practice this belief on an individual basis? Paul exhortsrepparttar 140758 church in his letter torepparttar 140759 Ephesians, "I, therefore,repparttar 140760 prisoner ofrepparttar 140761 Lord, beseech you to have a walk worthy ofrepparttar 140762 calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keeprepparttar 140763 unity ofrepparttar 140764 Spirit inrepparttar 140765 bond of peace." (Ephesians 4:1-3) How does this tell us that we should behave as a member of a local congregation? We should love each other inrepparttar 140766 Spirit. That means that we should be very careful not to say things to each other that are hurtful. It also mean that if someone does say something that hurts us - even if they do it on purpose - we should forgive them and continue to love them! And I realize that each of us may on occasion accidently make a comment that hurts others. When we know that we have done this, we should show our love forrepparttar 140767 brother or sister and apologize. I truly wish that all our members would live by these principles.

The above principle is further emphasized in Philippians, "Only let your conduct be worthy ofrepparttar 140768 gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together forrepparttar 140769 faith ofrepparttar 140770 gospel,..." (Philippians 1:27) I sometimes wonder what we could accomplish if we would do as Paul tells us here, to be "with one mind striving together forrepparttar 140771 faith ofrepparttar 140772 gospel." Those things which so many of our people do which I am talking against here serve to destroyrepparttar 140773 body. Remember that we are speaking ofrepparttar 140774 church which is "the bride of Christ." Jesus will be coming after His church. Will He accept a divided church? I would not think so.

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