Three Foundational Principles of Discipleship

Colossians 1:16-17 “For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers:  all things were created by him, and for him:  And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.”

There is nothing that was created without God’s hand.  When you study the origin of all things; all of it dates back to God.  God is the origin of everything.  The key to believing the Bible is believing the first verse in the Bible – “In the beginning God…”  Matter of fact, if you want a great understanding of the word “origin” then it could be just as well that we use “God” in its place.

The reason many of our young people are falling out of Church today is because they are not getting their facts straight.  We have built an educational system that emphasizes evolution as more “fact” than “theory”.  While at the same time we have created a spiritual system that emphasizes Biblical “history”, Biblical “accounts” as nothing more than a “story”.  Bottom line…We go to school to hear the “facts” about our origin and we go to church to hear “fairy tales” about our origin.  There are three foundational principles that Christians must begin to bring back into the structure of its discipleship in order to see a radical change in our future.

  1.  God Created All Things:  The things in heaven, earth, visible, invisible, thrones, dominions, principalities and powers were all created by God.  God created us and everything around us.  It is not just a fairy tale; it is a God given fact found throughout the Bible that God created everything.
  2.  God Claims All Things:  All things were created by God, but at the same time, all things were created for God.  This principle helps us remove the selfish mindset that many of us have toward our possessions.  While God has allowed us the authority to rule over these things, He still reminds us that these things were created for His good pleasure.  If it is not for His glory then it is all in vain.
  3.  God Controls All Things:  We quote it often, but I am afraid we rarely believe it.  Everything is in God’s control.  Sure, man has a free will but the things created by God are the things controlled by God.  The movement of the earth, the storms, the stars in their sockets, the sun and its orbit, and everything else though of is under the control of God.  So before we go giving Satan more credit than He deserves we must remember that God is ultimately in control. Personally, I would rather give God the glory than give Satan the credit. 

Today’s Challenge:  This is more of a life-long challenge than a “today-only” challenge.  We must begin to lay these three foundational principles in the backdrop of all our discipleship if we are to save this next generation.

Six Things That Make Us Better Thinkers

Philippians 4:8 “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, thing on these things.”

The mind is a powerful tool.  Honestly, we must realize that the things that we think upon are the things that control our actions as well as our relationships.  Our thought-life is the mechanism that builds or breaks our relationship with Christ as well as with others.  The Lord gives us a great picture of what should be going through our minds.  I would like to identify the things we are to think upon.

  • Things That are True – Don’t focus on error when you can hold truth in the backdrop.
  • Things That are Honest – There is nothing that brings us more frustrations than a lie.  Remember that Satan is the most dishonest being ever to live.  Don’t think about the author of lies.
  • Things That are Just – God is fair and just. Life is unfair and if we get focused on the unfairness of life we will neglect the fairness of God.
  • Things That are Pure – This may take changing a channel, even if it is something as simple as a news broadcast.
  • Things That are Lovely – There is nobody more lovely than the Lord.  There is nothing uglier than sin.
  • Things That are Good Report – The glass can be half-full if you look at through these eyes.

Notice that these things have virtue and at the same time offer praise.  They take our minds off the problem and help us to focus on the solution.

Today’s Challenge – Think on these things!

There Is Only One Way To Live

Galatians 3:11 “But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.”

If we are to really live, we must live out our lives by faith.  It is evident that God emphasizes the importance of walking by faith.  I think it is good to highlight the fact that faith is not walking day by day, but it is walking step by step.  The evidence of those that have been justified (those that have been declared righteous by God) are to walk by faith.  Faith is the one thing that honors God.  Faith is the thing that gains God’s attention.  Faith is the foundation by which everything in Christianity rest upon.  Without faith we will never be able to please God.  Now the purpose of Christianity is to live a life that pleases and glorifies God.  Walking by faith is the best way we can bring glory to God.

Most people today are justifying themselves by what they are doing, rather than being justified on what has already been done.  We are not declared righteous by our works, we are declared righteous through our faith.  Just like with Abraham, he believed God and it was counted unto him for righteousness.  Simply believing God is enough.  Wow!!!  That is incredible to think that in order to really please the Lord all we have to do is believe Him.  In a world that wants to question Him, God just wants us to believe Him.

When there is an argument between my children, I find that both of them just want to be believed.  The same goes for God.  Satan is telling his story and God is proclaiming his truths.  The question remains:  Are we going to believe the lies of Satan, or are we going to believe the truths of God?

Today’s Challenge:  Just believe God.  Remember the only way to truly live, is to live completely by faith.

The Simplicity That Is In Christ

2 Corinthians 11:3 “But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.”

We have many tendencies to complicate things that God meant to be real simple.  We call things hard, that were intended to be real easy and we get confused about things that are supposed to be real easy to understand.  We are reminded that Satan’s intentions are to keep us from obeying the Lord.  The Lord makes His directions real clear, but Satan is the one that tries to confuse us.  When we give place to the Devil we are allowing ourselves to be pulled away from Christ.  The intentions of Satan is basically to corrupt our minds from the simplicity of Christ.  When give ear to Satan we are allowing corruption to enter our minds.

Satan will corrupt the mind in order to confuse the mind. 

God did not intend for the Christ-life to be difficult or confusing.  Sure there are difficulties and hard times, but God offers relief, rest, and revival for those that bring those difficulties to Him.  Man has tried to complicate the Bible while God intended for it to be quite simple.  We must remember the simplicity that is in Christ.

  • Christ had a Simple Message – Believe on Christ and you will be Saved
  • Christ had a Simple Command – Follow Me

If you think about it, everything about Christ and the Christ-life is real simple.  Just do what He says and it will not get complicated.  However; we question, we doubt, and we rebel against the very simplest of lifestyles.

Today’s Challenge:  ­Quit complicated things through unbelief and start believing in the simplicity that is in Christ.