What Does a New Believer Need to Know, to Be and to Do?
1. John 1:12 explains that by receiving Christ, you have become a child of God by believing in Christ’s Name.
- a. Who gave you this new birth, according to John 1:13?
- b. Now that you have come to have eternal life, who have you come to know, according to John 17:3?
2. We know God primarily through His revealed Word, and because all of inspired Scripture is profitable (2 Tim 3:16–17), it’s good to get acquainted with the entire Bible:
- a. Look at its Table of Contents and familiarize yourself with the 39 books of the Old Testament (OT) and the 27 books of the New Testament (NT). The OT primarily tells the story of the covenant God made with Abraham (around 2000 BC) until his family, the nation of Israel, returned from exile in Babylon around 400 BC. In Luke 24:44, what does Jesus explain are the three parts of the OT, and who does He say is the main character of the OT?
- b. The NT tells the story of the New Covenant Jesus made with His Church (Luke 22:20), and it consists of the 4 Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, John), which tell the life of Jesus (roughly 6 BC–30 AD); the Book of Acts, which recounts the founding of the Church (30–60 AD); then comes the 13 letters that Paul wrote to the churches he established (Romans-Philemon), followed by the 8 “General Letters” written to various first-century churches (Hebrews-Jude), and finally comes the Book of Revelation, which ends with the return of the Lord and the coming New Earth. What does Luke 1:1–4 indicate about those who wrote the NT?
- c. According to John 20:30–31, what are the main reasons that God gave us His written Word?
3. The Bible actually tells us in various places what are the matters of first importance; for example, note the list of essential doctrines in Ephesians 4:3–6.
- a. “There is one body,” identified as the Church in Eph 5:23. What does Hebrews 10:24–25 tell should be your relationship to Christ’s Church?
- b. “There is one Spirit,” identified as the Holy Spirit of God in Eph 4:30.
- 1. What has the Holy Spirit already done for you, according to Eph 1:13, 2:18; 2:22; 3:16; 4:30?
- 2. What does Eph 5:18 tell should be your response to the Spirit?
- c. “There is one hope of your calling.”
- 1. How has God called you, according to 2 Tim 1:9?
- 2. What does Titus 1:1–3 indicate is the ultimate hope of your salvation?
- 3. Can you be assured of that final hope, according to Heb 6:11?
- d. “There is one Lord.”
- 1. Who is this one Lord, according to 1 Cor 8:6?
- 2. What do you think Phil 2:11 means to confess Christ Jesus as Lord?
- 3. What are the important facts to know about Jesus’ ministry, according to 1 Cor 15:1–8?
- e. “There is one faith.”
- 1. How are you initially saved, according to Eph 2:8–9?
- 2. This great truth is called “justification,” whereby God declares you to be just before Him (Gal 2:16).
- 3. Where did your faith originate, according to Phil 3:9?
- f. “There is one baptism”
- 1. If you have not been baptized with water in the Name of the Father, Son and Spirit, according to Matt 28:19-20, how can you make arrangements to do so?
- 2. What spiritual reality does water baptism represent, according to Mark 1:8,1 Cor 12:13, and Gal 3:27?
- g. “There is One God and Father of all.” Usually when the NT mentions God, it refers to the Father (1 Cor 8:6). From Eph 1:2–11, jot down some things the Father has done for you:
4. The main reason for reading the Bible is so you can love God more and become more like Christ as the HS works His life in you: this is the “being” side of the Christian faith, developing godly character. What does 1 Thess 4:3–4 call this process?
Here are some ways to cultivate your relationship with the Holy Spirit:
- a. What work of the Spirit do you need to sensitive toward, according to John 16:8?
- b. What does Rom 8:14 tell is mark of a child of God?
- c. Have you received the witness of the Spirit that you are a child of God? (Rom 8:16)
- d. What fruit does the Holy Spirit produce in your life? (Gal 5:22–23)
- e. What do you need to be constantly, according to Eph 5:18?
- f. How does 1 Peter 4:10–11 encourage you to find the gifts of the Spirit and use them?
5. As you spend time getting to know Christ in a more personal way, based on knowing the facts of the faith, the NT then tells us what we should do in living out the faith.
- a. Jesus says in John 14:15, if we love Him, then we should do what?
- b. You learn Christ’s commands in the Bible, so what does Joshua 1:8 tell about how to study the Scriptures?
- c. As you read the Bible, you will learn about activities every Christian should do in order to demonstrate your faith in Christ. There are many great “to do” sections in the Bible, such as the entire books of Proverbs and James, but here’s a sampling of good things that Hebrews 13 tells you to do, so think of ways you can remain in brotherly love (v. 1) as you consider these verses:
-  Showing hospitality (v. 2)
-  Remembering prisoners (v.3)
-  Sexual purity (v. 4)
-  Giving to the Lord’s ministries (vs. 5-6), with the tithe (10%) as a goal to aim toward, without being showy in your giving (Matt 23:23);
-  Making yourself accountable to other believers (vs. 7, 17)
-  Moderation in your diet (v. 9)
-  Bearing up under suffering (vs. 10-14)
-  Participating in group worship (vs. 15)
-  Doing good things for others (see also Titus 2:7, 14; 3:3, 14)
-  Praying (v. 18), which is simply talking to God (Luke 18:1).
- 6. Another important activity is sharing the Good news with others (Acts 8:4), also called evangelism. It’s important to learn a basic Gospel outline to share with unbelievers; here’s one called the “Roman Road:”
- a. What does Rom 3:23 tell is our problem?
- b. What does Rom 5:8 tell is God’s provision for that problem?
- c. What does Rom 6:23 tell that God offers to us as a gift?
- d. What does Rom 10:9 tell is our response to Christ?
- e. What does Rom 8:15–16 tell is the Spirit’s confirmation?
7. The walk of faith is a strange mixture of joy and sadness, because you still have strong enemies against you;
- a. First is the enemy you cannot see but is real nonetheless, the devil. How does 1 Peter 5:8–9 tell we are to handle Satan?
- b. A closer enemy is your own fleshly lusts: How does 1 Peter 2:11–12 tell we are to cope with the enemy within?
- c. Then there are real people who are enemies of Christians—what does Rom 12:18–21 teach are ways we can cope with enemies?
- d. The most visible enemy is the godless world and its temptations: How does 1 Cor 10:13 tell we are to face temptations?
- e. Because of these enemies, Jesus calls on believers to “endure or persevere to the end” (Matt 24:13), whereby you “keep on keeping on” in the daily walk with Christ in the face of trials and suffering (Heb 12:1–3). Because it’s easy to become discouraged, what does 1 Peter 1:13 tell us to do to get the right perspective on the future?
8. The best news is that God promises to get you safely home to his heavenly kingdom (2 Tim 4:18). What does Jesus teach about the security of His “sheep” in John 10:27–29?