Back To Basics – A Disciplined Life!

As Christians our eternal souls rest upon our salvation through Jesus Christ. This is basic salvation or the foundation of our salvation. Salvation is defined as: 1) “a saving or being saved from danger, evil, difficulty, destruction, etc.; rescue 2) the act of saving someone from sin or evil: the state of being saved from sin or evil.” Jesus saved or rescued us from eternal destruction by offering us salvation. But, it’s up to us to receive it! St John 3:3 says: “Jesus answered and said unto him (Nicodemus), Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” To be born again is to live a new life different from the old life you lived. It means to begin anew! It does not mean to patch up the old life but to begin with a new foundation to live and grow upon. We must have a new nature, new principles, new affections and new goals. So, a saved life is a changed life or a disciplined life.

Most Christians affirm that they are disciples of Christ; which means they are followers of Christ. But a disciple of Christ must not only confess who they are, but live what they are. Ephesians 2:8-9 says: “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” So, salvation is available for all mankind because it is a gift of grace from God. Our faith in Christ gives us access to salvation. So we don’t work for salvation but we work because of salvation.

But, without work and just confession, our faith is dead or invalid. James 2:14, 17 says: “What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him? Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.” That’s why Paul said in Philippians 2:12b: “… work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.” Real faith produces works because you love God. Jesus said: “if ye love me, keep my commandments” (St John 14:15). How do we keep His commandments? Number 1: by being born again and number 2: by obedience and living a disciplined life.

When you look at the word discipline, you also see the word disciple. If you remove the “in” the word becomes disciple; which means if a disciple is “in” Christ, he is disciplined. There is too much talk about being transparent with our sins instead of being Jesus apparent without sin. Let’s stop making excuses; especially Christian leaders saying we have to live in a glass bowl, and smile when we don’t feel like it. As a leader, you have greater requirements than others, just as Moses was required more. Jesus said to whom much is given; much shall be required of him. (Luke 12:48). Sin should require you to step down from your position and evaluate yourself, instead of stepping up and blaming the church for your sins.

2 Corinthians 7:10 says: “For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of …” Have you really put on the whole armour of God to stand against the wiles of the devil or are you half dressed? (Ephesians 6:10-11) Jesus instructs us to: “Let your light so shine before men, that they might see your good works (not your sins), and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16) Also, Ephesians 5:12 says: “For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.” So, why would you parade your sins and offences done in the flesh that are in disobedience to Christ? Hebrews 12:1b says: “…lay aside (not pick up or reveal) every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset (or entangles or hinders) us …”

If you can have faith to save you, you should have that same faith to keep you from sinning! The problem is you have not disciplined yourself. I Corinthians 9:25, 27 says: “And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.” Jesus is willing and able to keep us if we commit ourselves unto Him. (2 Timothy 1:12) So, let’s get back to the basics! Are you born again? If so, are you living a disciplined life?

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Saturday, Jan 19, 2019 1-2pm

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