How to Live the Christian Life
Now that you are a Christian
and are in fellowship with God, you will want to learn more about how to
grow closer to Him. The Bible calls this growing "in the grace and
knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ" (2 Peter 3:18).
Here are some things that will help you begin growing as a new
The Bible is God's inspired Word. Besides revealing the Good News about
forgiveness and eternal life, it can also answer the many questions you
will have as you try to live a life that pleases God. It will enable you
to be "thoroughly equipped for every good work" (2 Timothy 3:17).
Here are some suggestions as
you begin reading the Bible on a daily basis:
- Try reading the New Testament books in this order:
- First, read through the Gospel of Luke, a chapter a day. This
will help you understand the basic facts about the Gospel.
- Then read Acts, for the exciting story of how Christ's first
disciples spread the Good News of His death and resurrection.
- Next, read some of the letters that Christ's apostles wrote to
these first disciples--all of whom were new in their faith, just
like you. These letters include Romans through 3 John.
- Then, go back and read one of the other three gospels: Matthew,
Mark or John.
- Think about what you read; study and analyze it. Ask your pastor
or a mature Christian friend to recommend a good Bible study guide.
The Bible not only reveals God to us; it contains greater wisdom than
all the other books in the world.
- Read through the Psalms--the Old Testament book of worship--to
enrich your devotion to God.
- Read Proverbs to gain wisdom and common sense, and to strengthen
your relationships with other people.
- Pray for understanding. The Holy Spirit will help you (Psalm
119:18), and you will begin to see life from God's perspective.
- Whenever you can, talk with others about what you are learning.
Talk with God often. Talk over your
problems with Him. Let Him bear the weight of your troubles. (See
Matthew 11:28; 1 Peter 5:7.)
Praise and thank God for who He
is and for what He has done for you. Admit your weaknesses. Confess each
specific sin that you are aware of. Pray for others that they, too, may
receive Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.
Suggestions for your daily
- Plan a definite time, preferably in the morning when your mind is
fresh and rested. Make it a habit.
- Select a quiet place where you can be alone with God.
- Make a list of requests, for others as well as yourself.
- Read and meditate on a portion of Scripture, then spend time in
- As you end your daily time with God, commit the day and yourself
depend on the Holy Spirit
God is actually three persons in one: God
the Father, God the Son (Jesus Christ), and God the Holy Spirit. The
Bible teaches that the Holy Spirit actually lives within every true
believer in Christ. (See John 14:16-17.)
The Bible says that the Holy Spirit, as He lives inside you, is your
counselor, to help you understand the truth revealed in God's Word: "The
Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will
teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to
you" (John 14:26).
The Holy Spirit will:
- teach you
- guide you
- strengthen you in your times of need
Attend church regularly
When you received Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior, you
began a relationship not only with Him but also with all other
Christians. Whatever it meant to you in the past, going to church can
now become a rich and rewarding experience:
- You will grow in understanding by hearing God's Word preached and
- You can ask questions and discuss Scripture with others.
- You will learn to worship God, which means praising Him for all
that He is and thanking Him for all that He has done for you.
- As you worship, learn and serve with other Christians, you will
find individuals with whom you can form lasting friendships
(friendships that will last for all eternity!).
Be of service to others
You will find that the more you give yourself in service to others, the
more you will enjoy your Christian life. Talk to your pastor about ways
and opportunities to serve Christ and to witness for Him. "For we are
God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God
prepared in advance for us to do" (Ephesians 2:10).
Learn to conquer your doubts
At times you may doubt that you really are a child of God:
- There may be some big failures in your Christian life.
- You may find yourself thinking about things that you feel
Christians just shouldn't be thinking about.
- You may be troubled by some unconfessed sin.
When these things happen, it is important to remember that you are not
saved by your goodness but by what Christ has already done for you.
Review the first few pages of this text. Reassure yourself with the fact
that, if you have received Christ by faith, you are now a child of God.
Learn to live one day at a time
Too often our lives become filled with anxiety. We worry ourselves sick
about what might happen tomorrow. We try to cross our bridges before
ever coming to them!
- The Bible says we are not to be anxious about what might happen
tomorrow. (See Matthew 6:33-34.)
- The Bible also promises that, "Your strength will equal your days"
(Deuteronomy 33:25). In other words, God's grace will be sufficient to
meet the challenges of each new day.
Learn the blessing of suffering
Difficulties, ill health and all kinds of suffering have a new
perspective when you have Christ in your life:
- Instead of "going to pieces," you can be strengthened.
- Instead of being a burden to others, you can be a blessing. As you
realize God's power, comfort and strength through life's experiences,
you will grow in your faith.
Learn how to deal with temptation
Temptation is a part of life. It was before you received Christ, and it
still will be. It is not a sin to have wrong thoughts from time to time.
It is, however, a sin to choose to dwell on such thoughts over and over
The Bible says, "Watch and pray so that you will not fall into
temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak" (Matthew
26:41). When Jesus was tempted in the wilderness, He replied to the
devil by quoting Scripture. Three times He said, "It is written..."
(Matthew 4:4, 7, 10). Be prepared for temptation, through prayer and
through your knowledge of God's Word.
The Bible says, "No temptation has seized you except what is common to
man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you
can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so
that you can stand up under it" (1 Corinthians 10:13). Be prepared to
take advantage of God's "way out" of temptation, whether it means that
you "flee" the scene of the temptation (1 Timothy 6:11), or that you
stay on the scene and "resist" it (James 4:7).
Tell others about Christ
Letting others know about your new life in Christ--by word and by
action--can be one of the most satisfying and exciting experiences you
have ever had. The apostle Peter encourages us to "always be prepared to
give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope
that you have" (1 Peter 3:15).
© 1968 (reprinted 1987) Billy Graham Evangelistic Association,
Used by permission, all rights reserved.
For further help in living the Christian life
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Resources for Christian Living
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