Copyright © 2005 J. Neely. All rights reserved.
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You must be in fellowship prior to your Bible study, so that the spiritual information you receive can become a source, of blessing to your soul and produce spiritual growth.
1 John 3:7-8
7 Little children [teknion], let [planao] no man [medeis] deceive [planao] you [humas]: he that doeth [poieo] righteousness [dikaiosune] is [esti] righteous [dikaios], even as [kathos] he [ekeinos] is [esti] righteous [dikaios].
8 He that committeth [poieo] sin [hamartia] is [esti] of [ek] the devil [diabolos]; for [hoti] the devil [diabolos] sinneth [hamartano] from [apo] the beginning [arche]. For [eis] this purpose [touto] the Son [huios] of God [theos] was manifested [phaneroo], that [hina] he might destroy [luo] the works [ergon] of the devil [diabolos]. KJV-Interlinear
7 Little children, let no one deceive you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous; 8 the one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, that He might destroy the works of the devil. NASB
Little children, refers to you and me as believers in Christ. Children need guidance - constant guidance. Children can never have self guidance because they are incapable of discernment apart from some other form of wisdom. Children cannot invent their own wisdom. Only God can provide the necessary information which will lead to knowledge, understanding and wisdom in the functions of life and truth.
Apart from doctrine, we will all be deceived. We cannot avoid deception and being misled unless we have the truth to guide us along in life.
Truth comes from a daily intake of Bible doctrine and from no other source.
In order to be stable in life we must lead a pattern of life which is consistent with that which God teaches. In order to lead a pattern of life which is consistent with that which God teaches, we have to learn His Will. In order to learn His Will, we have to study regularly, and then use what we learn from our study, on a daily basis.
That means when you conduct your life in a manner consistent with what God teaches, and when you do so on a daily basis, then you are living a pattern of life which is consistent with what God intends for you.
Everyone fails in life. That should be obvious. But your life is not evaluated (pass or fail) based on any given moment of your life. People will look at you and point out (subjectively and judgmentally) any single or string of failures in your life and decide that you are a failure. Of course it is far easier to point at the failures of others. That is the function of the arrogant person.
But God looks on the soul and sees the pattern of life which you live. The advancing believer will study, and learn and apply doctrine to his life. The mature believer will fail from time to time but he will recover from that failure (fellowship) and continue his advance.
The negative believer will fail and not recover. Anyone who remains out of fellowship for extended periods of time lives under the rules of their sin nature. The sin nature is your weakness spiritually and follows after the pattern of the failure of Satan, who was the first sinner.
44 'You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. NASB
Satan sets out the pattern of sin (man did not invent it). All sin, of whatever kind or degree, is satanic in nature. Our sins are the devils works. What is sin in us is his natural pattern of life. And were it not for the work of Christ, then we would have no means of escape from that trap. We are only as strong as our weakest link of life. Sin and death is that weakest link. We cannot overcome our weakness ourselves, despite that fact that there are always people who will attempt to reconcile religion with moral laxity.
In our study we call these people compromising believers.
Jesus Christ came to earth and paid the price, and paved the way for our escape. Salvation by means of Christ is mans only means of escape from certain eternal destruction. Spiritual growth be means of Christ in us (learning the written Word) is the only means of growing up spiritually. The environment of fellowship is the only classroom whereby we may achieve an audience with God and have a daily relationship with Him.
There are only two spheres in which you can live your life. First, there is the sin nature in which you follow the pattern of the Devil. Second, there is fellowship, in which you can follow the pattern of the spiritual life God intends for you. Man cannot define a third domain in which he might live his life. You are either obedient with God as the overall function of your life, or you are not.
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End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.