New Christian Study
By Walter D. Huyck Jr., D.Min.
Things You Need To Know
Before You Begin This Study
Pray for God to bless your study
time and fellowship today.
Quote the memory verse to your
Talk about the Devotions you read
this last week and the Spiritual Insights, Prayers, and Applications that were
gleaned from these devotions. Discuss your reading from the Spiritual Journal as
Discuss any question that you
might have as a result of your daily Bible Reading.
Discuss your Sermon Notes.
This Weeks Memory Verse
Trust in the LORD with all thine
heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he
shall direct thy paths.
I think that the
easiest way for Christians to understand Baptism is for them to have a clear
understanding of its meaning. Consider Romans 6.3-5:
Know ye not,
that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his
death? Therefore we are ________ with him by baptism into death: that _______ as
Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also
should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the
____________ of his death, we shall be also [in the likeness] of [his]
The first thing
Christians need to understand about Baptism is that it is a Symbol. This
is revealed in our text by the words "like" and "likeness."
I like to use my
wedding ring as a good example. I wear my wedding ring to let the whole world
know that I have committed myself to my wife, for life. If I take my wedding
ring off it doesn't mean I'm not married anymore, it just makes it harder for
other people to know I'm married.
It's the same for
Baptism, only with more meaning. Baptism is a picture of the death, burial,
and resurrection of Jesus Christ. When you go under the water you are a
living picture of His death, and burial. When you come up you picture His
Contrary to what
some people might teach. Baptism does not wash away our sins, only the
blood of Jesus can do that (Colosians 1.14). Baptism does not save us, only the
combination of Grace and Faith can do that for us (Ephesians 2.8-9). Baptism is
the outward expression of a deep inner faith.
So, why do
Christians need to be baptized? Because God commands it (Matthew 28.19-20).
Go ye therefore, and teach all
nations, _________________them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of
the Holy Ghost: 20 Teaching them to
observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you
alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
It is literally
the first step of obedience for every new believer. Any Christian that neglects
to be baptized will never be in complete obedience to God. It astounds me
that some people would put their relationship with God at risk over something as
simple as baptism.
One other important note. Baptism must follow
Read Acts 8.35-38, before you continue.
If you were
baptized as a child, it doesn't count. Simply because you did not choose it for
Baptism must also
be my immersion. Why? First, because our Lord was baptized by
immersion. Second, because you don't just sprinkle someone with dirt when
you bury them, you put them completely under the ground. Third, because
the Greek word for baptism means to "put under." Immersion is the only
form of baptism that is Biblical.
should submit to believers baptism as their personal outward expression of what
Jesus Christ has done for them. In my opinion, sooner is better than latter.
Have you been
baptized by immersion since you have accepted Jesus Christ as your personal
If not what reasons can you give for waiting?
Another area that
is often neglected by new Christians, but can result in some truly remarkable
blessings, is that of the tithe. I have heard it said, and have learned through
time and experience, that a person is not fully surrendered to God until he
is surrendered in his finances.
materialistic culture it is hard to believe that a person can give ten percent
of their personal earnings to God, make ends meet, and be able to have or do all
that they would desire. The truth is, and I am speaking from experience, that
God is able to take a little and make it much or take a lot and make it little.
Let me explain this concept with a personal testimony.
Shortly after I
became a Christian I heard a testimony by one of the older Deacons in the Church
that I was a member of. He was speaking directly to the issue of the tithe, and
"I didn't believe
that I could tithe and make ends meet until I found and accepted the challenge
given by God in Malachi chapter three. When I read that challenge I surrendered
to God and accepted it. I began to tithe and was shocked when I not only made
ends meet, but also started to have a monthly surplus. I couldn't explain it,
and still can't, but it's been a reality in my life ever since."
to that man's testimony, I looked up the challenge myself, accepted it for
myself, and experienced a Scriptural truth that has been a part of my life ever
since. Consider God's challenge as it is given in His Word, look up Malachi
Ye are cursed
with a curse: for ye have ___________ me, even this whole nation. Bring ye all
the _________ into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and
______________ me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you
the windows of heaven, and ___________ you out a blessing, that there shall
__________ be room enough to receive it.
challenge is simple. Bring in the tithe, faithfully, and see what God
will do in return. Now, for your information, the tithe is the First Ten
Percent of your earnings (Leviticus 27.30-31). It is important to understand
that it is to be the first ten percent, not the last, that are to be given to
Now, there are
some that are eager to exclaim, "that is Old Testament, it does not pertain to
us today." In the New Testament Jesus told the religious leaders that they ought
to tithe, and to have a proper attitude at the same time (Matthew 23.23). We are
also told in the New Testament that those that work with the Word of God ought
to live off of the offerings of the people (1 Corinthians 9.9-14; 1 Timothy
6.18). Keep in mind that Jesus did not come to abolish the law, but to fulfill
Remember that the
tithe is not about your duty to the Church. It is truly a reflection of the
depth of your relationship with our Lord and Savior. If you are fully
surrendered to Him, then it will only be natural to be obedient in every aspect
of your life, including your finances.
Are you currently
tithing of your first fruits? __________________
If not, do you
desire to take God at His challenge, and receive the abundant blessings that
only He can give. If you do then write a brief statement that reflects how you
are going to meet God's financial challenge.
Faithfulness and Fruitfulness
It seems that a
trend has developed in Christian Churches all across America in recent years.
There seems to be a prevailing attitude that so long as an individual is
faithful in Church attendance, then they must be surviving spiritually. I'm not
convinced that faithfulness without fruitfulness indicates spiritual well being.
It seems to me that one of the driving principles of the New Testament is that
if a Christian is growing in Christ, then he or she will most certainly
influence others through their lifestyle, conversation, and example. It seems
obvious throughout the New Testament that spiritual faithfulness almost always
bears results, fruitfulness.
Consider what Jesus said in John 15.4:
Abide in me,
and I in you. As the branch cannot bear __________ of itself, except it
___________ in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.
It is clear from
this passage that abiding is connected to the fruit. There does not seem to be
any suggestion that an abiding branch may not bear fruit. In other passages the
principle seems just as clear. In the parable of the talents faithfulness
produces the expected result of fruitfulness (Matthew 25.14-30). In the parable
of the sower Jesus clearly taught that the seed that fell into the good ground
represents those that hear the Word, keep it, and bear much fruit (Luke 8.15).
is divinely connected to fruitfulness, then we must come to understand just what
the resulting fruit will look like. Look up Galatians 5.22-23:
__________ of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness,
goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
Notice the list
of the Fruit of the Spirit. These are not outward actions, but they are inward
realities of the heart. This is a list of the characteristics of a Christian.
Jesus taught that it is the things that come out of a person that defiles them,
because that things that come out of a person come out of their heart, or the
core of their being (Matthew 5.16-20). Our actions and words are the result of
who we really are. Therefore, the Holy Spirit of God strives to deal with us at
the heart of who we are. He strives to mold and transform our character. For if
our heart is right, then our conversation and actions will be right as well.
Look up Proverbs 11.30:
___________ of the righteous is a tree of ___________; and he that winneth souls
Now, just think
about this for a moment. If we are healthy, spiritual Christians with healthy
God molded characters, then the result of our lives should produce fruit as
well. Another type of fruit spoken of in the Bible is the outward fruit of the
lives changed because of our godly influence. The New Testament tells us that
when the Holy Spirit comes upon us He will empower us to be witnesses for Jesus
Christ (Acts 1.8). That divinely powerful witness should flow from who we are in
Christ, and will certainly result in changed lives all around us.
Therefore, it is
clear. Faithfulness is divinely linked to fruitfulness. Spiritual fruitfulness
within a Christian will undoubtedly manifest itself in an individual's life, and
influence all that come into contact with them.
How has this study on faithfulness and
fruitfulness challenged you?
What will you do as a result of this study?
strengthen a Christian in his walk like the encouraging words of a trusted and
faithful brother of our Lord. No Christian should under estimate the value of
those relationships that surround their faith. For indeed those relationships
are the anchors that hold us to the solid rock of Jesus Christ. Consider
Bear ye one
another's ______________ , and so fulfil the law of Christ.
Now fellowship is
more than just social engagement. It's more than just being in close proximity
to another person. Fellowship is the actual sharing of burdens. It is to take
those things that are dearest to your heart and to allow someone else to help
you to bear up under that concern. Therefore, the most important aspect of
fellowship is the relationship.
relationships are only surface then no real fellowship can take place. Trust,
honesty, and confidentiality must mark a Christian relationship that
demonstrates real fellowship. You will not share your deepest concerns with
someone that you feel might use your burden against you. You will not entrust
the burden of your soul with someone that demonstrates no integrity. You most
certainly would not share your trials with the local neighborhood gossip. Yet we
are told to bear one another's burdens.
The only way for
a Church to experience the type of fellowship and unity spoken of in the New
Testament is for its members to develop real relationships with each other. It's
not easy to find these types of relationships. They are truly rare indeed. The
truth is, the types of relationships that produce fellowship require a lot of
work and effort. Fellowship will not be the result of a Sunday Morning only
effort, unless that experience is on going for an extremely long period of time
with the same people all of the time.
The truth is that
God expects you to not only join, and attend your local Church, but He also
wants you to be involved with the people that make up your Church body. Know who
they are, get involved with their families, and strive to build the types of
relationships that will result in real spirit led fellowship.
Do you currently experience burden-bearing
What will you do to build relationships in
The Spiritual Battle
Christian life is certainly not easy or simple. It is the richest and most
fulfilling thing that you will ever experience, but it is a daily challenge. As
you read through the New Testament you will be regularly reminded that you will
face struggles and trials along the way. There will be difficult decisions to be
made. There will be hard questions to answer. There will most certainly be
challenging people in your path. As a Christian you must always remember that
you are our Lord's Ambassador to this world today, and you must learn to be as
disciplined and faithful in character and action as a soldier must for any army.
Consider the 1 Timothy 6:12:
_____________ fight of faith, lay ____________ on eternal life, whereunto thou
art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.
What a wonderful
gift we have received from our God through the sacrifice of our Lord and Savior,
Jesus Christ. He has given us eternal life as our hope for the future, and the
promise of an abundant life in relationship to Him for each and every day. There
is no greater desire in my heart than that I might take hold of the awesome
opportunities that Almighty-God will place before me today. I hope that you will
make that your focus and hearts desire as well.
Read 2 Timothy 2:3:
endure hardness, as a good ____________ of Jesus Christ.
Having spent nine
years in the United States Marine Corps, I think I know a little about what
makes a good soldier. A good solider must know, understand, and believe in his
purpose and mission. A good solider must know that his readiness is truly
contingent upon discipline. A good solider must know his position in the unit or
team, and must have the integrity to perform at the appropriate time, the well
being of the unit will depend upon him.
It is the same
for us as Christians. If we are going to have a dynamic relationship with Jesus
Christ, then we are going to have to develop heart felt integrity and discipline
in those things that will spiritually mature us for our Lord. What are the
essential disciplines for a Christian?
1. Daily time in God's Word and Scripture
2. Constant private, regular, and collective
3. Personal self-evaluation and meditation.
4. Commitment to a local Church body in
5. A deep personal desire to spiritually
With out these
five essential elements a new Christian risks becoming lukewarm and a faithful
adherent to the religious systems that are cold and traditional. The terrible
truth about hard cold religion is that it misses the fullness of the
relationship that God truly want every Christian to experience. My dear friend,
don't ever forget, God loves you and wants to make your life into something
wonderful and dynamic for Him. However, He will not force Himself upon you. You
must decide whether you will allow Him to mold you into a living example of
Jesus Christ. Will you let go and let God?
What are your thoughts about the spiritual
How will you develop the spiritual
disciplines your life?
Your Spiritual Growth assignment for the
rest of your life:
Read your Bible everyday.
Hopefully, by now your daily bible
reading has become a habit or discipline in your life. Make a personal
commitment to read you Bible everyday. When you complete the New Testament
go back and read it again and don't ever stop.
Read the Daily Devotion
in the devotion guide that accompanies this study. Hopefully, you have
made journaling a habit or discipline in your life as well. The Devotion
guide ended this week. I suggest that you get a monthly our quarterly
devotional from your Church or from the Christian book store and continue your
devotions with it. You may decide to use a different devotional each year
in order to get some different insights each year. Just be sure you
continue to glean these essential spiritual insights.
Attend Church Sunday and take
Sermon Notes in your Spiritual Journal.
Continue to use your Spiritual Journal to take sermon notes. Taking notes
helps you toe remember and teach others.
Memorize the Memory Verse
- Now look for and memorize verse of your choosing.
Continue to Study
- Now that this New Christian Study is completed, perhaps you would
consider continuing your studies with the Impact Study Series. What
ever you do, don't stop studying God's Word. Once you stop its hard to get
started again. If you do stop for a time, get started again. You
need to feast on God's Word continuously.
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