A Believer’s Walk-1 by Rev. Shine P. Thomas
How is your walk with the Lord today?
A Believer’s Walk , Practical Christian Life
When a person comes to the saving grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the new creation has come and the old has gone. Then, there is a certain level of progress and quality of life that God expects from us. How is your walk with the Lord today? Is there progress in your spiritual life from when you were saved?
In 1 Thessalonians 4 & 5, Apostle Paul talks about practical Christian life. Paul is asking us to walk to please the Lord.
1 Thessalonians 4:1
1Furthermore then we beseech (beseech means beg) you, brethren, and exhort (exhort is stronger than encourage, to command) you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound more and more.
Paul says, on one side I am begging you but I am also commanding you to walk to please God. In speaking to the Colossian church Paul said:
6So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in Him.
Our Christian life is compared to a walk with God. God walked with man and woman in the garden everyday in the cool of the day. Enoch walked with God. Noah walked with God. Abraham told his servant to walk before God. Here in the NT Paul is telling us walk to please God. How is your walk with the Lord?
Just imagine a child growing up and learning to walk. He or she just does not walk straight away. It takes time to walk isn’t it? We too need to advance spiritually to walk with Christ.
Requirements for a Christian walk
1. Walking Requires Life
Dead people cannot rise up and walk. Many people try to walk spiritually but they cannot walk because they are dead. They go to church, then they get into the world and are dead in sins, and the next Sunday they try to rise up and walk again. If we need to have a good Christian walk, we need to be dead to sin and alive in Christ. We need to have the life of Christ always in us.
6So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in Him.
11In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.
2. Walking Requires Growth
New born babies cannot walk! They are alive, but they don’t walk, because they have not yet grown.
1 Peter 2:2
2Like new born babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation.
We need to nurture in the word of God for a healthy Christian walk.
Listen, growing spiritually is not a process of gaining things you did not have before. When a baby is born it has legs already, but they have not grown strong enough to work, there is no coordination to use their muscles yet. God has already given you the capacity to walk in new ways, but you need to develop the strength and coordination to use what He has given to you. You need nourishment for growth and that comes from the word of God.
The moment you are saved you have the power source from God to start a new life, walk a new walk, beat that habit, holy living, prayer, Bible reading, to give tithes etc but you got to nourish it but obedience to the word of God and make it grow.
Now there are some things that can stunt your growth:
Self-will and disobedience.
When we say no to God we put a big block into God’s plan and it can affect our growth. When we say no to God, then it may take quite some time for God to respond back to us.
In Genesis 12 God asked Abraham to stay in Cannan but when the famine rose he by his own will went to Egypt. If you see Abraham got into real trouble there. Sarai was about to be taken by Pharoah as wife, God intervened. Then they came back to Cannan, Abraham prospered, prayed to God but God never spoke to Abraham. It was only after Lot separated and Abraham’s heart was so heavy that the Lord spoke again to Abraham.
Some believers probably do not find growth probably because they said no to God in some decisions of their life. Maybe they are still heading in a good direction, they are prosperous, but there is no spiritual growth. Remember God has not abandoned you, if when we disobey God is just to forgive but it may take time. Remember self will and disobedience can shunt our growth temporarily.
So, walking requires life, and walking requires growth…
3. Walking Requires Liberty
We need to be free to walk. If a child’s legs are bound, he cannot walk, even if he has strength. We need to be free from every clutch of sin to walk.
45And I will walk at liberty: for I seek thy precepts.
2 Corinthians 3:17
17Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.
1Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us runwith perseverancethe race marked out for us.
13For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.
4. Walking Requires Light
Have you ever tried to walk thru the house in the dark, or walked through a ground at night? You are sacred of what you may stamp on or trip on. I remember when Sam was a child one day he got up from the bed at night and just started walking. The lights were off and soon he thud, he landed on the floor. He was all hurt. We cannot walk without the light.
1 John 1:7
7But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.
105Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.
I’m so glad that Jesus is the light and we can walk in the light, in the midst of a dark world.
5. Walking Requires Progress
Walking is from one destination to the other. Sadly many believers are walking on the treadmill. They are trying to walk, putting effort but they are in the same place, no progress.
1 Timothy 4:15
15Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress.
Are you making progress spiritually? You ought to be able to look back and see progress over the years, progress form the past year, past month, and even in recent days!
6. Walking Requires Balance
When a baby walks, he/she needs balance. How many times the children lose their balance and fall? In Christian walk our balance is our doctrine and the new life in Christ.
1 Timothy 4:16
16Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do you will save both yourself and your hearers.
A good Christian walk
In 1 Thessalonians 4 & 5 Paul is talking about the good Christian walk.
a. A walk of holiness
1 Thessalonians 4:3-7
3It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality;4that each of you should learn to control your own body in a way that is holy and honorable, 5not in passionate lust like the pagans,who do not know God;6and that in this matter no one should wrong or take advantage of a brother or sister.The Lord will punish all those who commit such sins,as we told you and warned you before. 7For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life.
When Paul exhorts about holiness he is very specific about sexual sins because sexual immorality was a major problem in that culture. It was common in that day for men to take several wives. It was an honour for a woman to serve as a temple prostitute. Homosexuality was common; men were using other men slaves for their sexual gratification.
Now the Jewish believers had grown up under a strict moral law, so they could easily adapt to the Bible teaching of sexuality. However, the new converts who had grown up in a sexually immoral culture had to be taught on God’s principle. If we look around today sexual immorality is the sin of this culture and this day!
1 Corinthians 6:18
18 Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body.
Did you know in the OT sexual sins were serious and adultery was punishable by death?
10If a man commits adultery with another man’s wife—with the wife of his neighbor—both the adulterer and the adulteress are to be put to death.
Adultery is extra-marital. Fornication is any sexual sin of any kind.
17Stolen water is sweet; food eaten in secret is delicious! 18But little do they know that the dead are there, that her guests are deep in the realm of the dead.
28Can a man walk on hot coals without his feet being scorched? 29So is he who sleeps with another man’s wife; no one who touches her will go unpunished.
Adultery is a very serious thing in the God’s presence. The result is always broken hearts, lost children, and usually ends up in divorce. And it’s such a serious sin that it’s the only sin for which God permits divorce.
b. No Homosexuality
God’s Wrath Against Sinful Humanity
18 wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them.
24Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another.
26Because of this, God gave them overto shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.
29 They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips,
30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31 they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy.32 Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.
A sexual sin is 2-pronged
a. A sin against God
In Genesis 20 Abimelech, the king took Sarah in order to make her his wife. The Lord intervened in a dream to Abimelech and said:
6Then God said to him in the dream, “Yes, I know you did this with a clear conscience, and so I have kept you from sinning against me. That is why I did not let you touch her.
When the wife of Potiphar tried to seduce Joseph, he refused and said:
9How could I do such a wicked thing and sin against God?
When David sinned against Bathsheba, he cried out to God.
4Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight.
b. A sin against your body
1 Corinthians 6:18-20
18Flee from sexual immorality.All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body. 19Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own;20you were bought at a price.Therefore honor God with your bodies.
The body is the holy temple of God. In the OT only 1 man was allowed to enter the temple, the most holy place- that was the High Priest. And we need a commitment of man and women recognizing the importance of only allowing 1 man or woman into their life and body. Youngsters practice abstinence until marriage. Married couples practice fidelity throughout marriage. That is holiness and purity according to the Bible.
We need men and women who walk with God standing for purity. Remember it’s not just about the sexual act, it’s about our eyes, and our thought life, and our personal habits.
A teenage girl was teased about her innocence by a girl who got around with other boys. She replied, “I can be like you anytime I want, but you can never be like me!”
You do the math, a few minutes of pleasure, a few years of flirting and self-will can end up in a lifetime of pain and sorrow. There’s a high price to pay for low living.
7 Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.
God’s plan for sex, which is 1 man with 1 woman for a lifetime and that is purity! One who walk right will understand this.
1 Thessalonians 4:7-8
7 For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life. 8 Therefore, anyone who rejects this instruction does not reject a human being but God, the very God who gives you his Holy Spirit.
Dear brothers and sister, please do not misunderstand and be offended for what I say. This instruction is given by God.
Are You Willing to Take This Walk With God?
How is your life today? Are you burdened with what you heard? God is still willing to work in you provided you return back to him and decide to walk in holiness. Let’s return back to God with repentance and go out with a clean heart today.