This is the course material for the Foundations of Faith class, presented by Caryn Kilgore for the Revival Center. It is recommended that those who are new to faith and/or new to the Revival Center take this course.
Each podcast session is included with the list of resource materials. You will want to gather your materials before you begin listening. If you do not have a Bible handy, Bible Gateway is a good online Bible.
“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16 KJV
“The effectual, fervent prayer of a righteous person availeth much.” James 5:16 KJV
“All scripture is God-Breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” 2 Timothy 3:16-17 NIV
“And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto death.” Revelations 12:11 KJV
LIST OF HANDOUTS AND RESOURCES
Handouts are available below in the next section, resources will have information on where to find them.
Session #1 – Salvation, Assurance of Salvation and the Lordship of Jesus Christ
Memory Verse: John 3:16
· Booklet – Steps to Peace with God/How to Lead Someone to Christ *
· Booklet – Homework – Read: “My Heart, Christ’s Home.” **
· Salvation Booklet – 1John 5:12-13
· Discipleship Handout
Session #2 – Prayer, The Holy Spirit and The Baptism of the Holy Spirit
Memory Verse: James 5:16
5 Handouts on prayer:
· The Lord’s Prayer
· The Prayer Life of Jesus
· The Baptism of the Holy Spirit
· Parents and Children
The importance of hearing God’s voice (John 10) when you pray and how to hear the voice of God
Session #3 – The Bible
Memory Verse: 2 Tim. 3:16-17
· A: Old Testament B: New Testament
· Parables, Psalms, Proverbs
· Handout: How to Memorize Scripture
· Eph. 6 – The Full Armor of God
· Pray and ask the Lord to give you a hunger to read the Word of God (Psalm 119)
Session #4 – Overcoming Bad Habits, Forming Good (Godly) Habits
Memory Verse: Rev. 12:11
· Forming Good Habits
· Overcoming Bad Habits
· Freedom Booklet***
· Dedicated and Devoted***
*Click this link to read the booklet
**Visit this website to order a copy of the booklet.
*** Published by the Revival Center. If you cannot pick one up in the foyer, please call 559-897-9575 to have it sent to you.
Biblical Self-Confrontation: An Essential for Discipleship
Discipleship is a process which enables you to “grow up” in the Lord Jesus Christ and equips you to overcome joyfully the pressures and trials of this present life (based on Luke 9:23-24, James 1:2-4). Discipleship requires constant self-examination that is in accordance with God’s Word (based on Matthew 7:1-5; 1 Corinthians 11:31; Galatians 6:4)
The following will help you evaluate your faithfulness as a disciple of Christ. For each question, rate yourself on a scale of 0 (no faithfulness, complete self-centeredness) to 10 (perfect faithfulness, total
Christ-centeredness). Regardless of your present level of faithfulness, remember that God will help you make the necessary changes to be conformed to the image of His Son (Romans 8:29; 2 Corinthians 3:18; Philippians 1:6). All of the characteristics of discipleship mentioned below are covered during this course. Biblical steps by which these characteristics can be incorporated into your life will also be explained.
1. Are you diligent in learning to handle accurately the Word of God (2 Timothy 2:15)?
2. Do you consistently examine yourself in light of God’s Word instead of comparing yourself with the lives or expectations of others (1 Samuel 16:7/ Isaiah55:8-11/ Romans 3:23; 2 Corinthians 10:12; Hebrews 4:12)?
3. Are you a doer of the Word? Being a doer of the Word requires continual hearing of God’s Word and walking in it to receive the blessings of the Lord (Deuteronomy 11:26-28; Romans 10:17; Hebrews 5:14; James 1:22-25). The Word is completely adequate for every area of life as it teaches, reproves, corrects, trains, and equips you in order that you may mature in Christ (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
4. Do you deny yourself by putting off your natural self-centeredness to follow the Lord Jesus Christ (Matthew 10:38-39; Luke 9:23-24)?
5. Do you seek to please God in all things (John 8:29; 2 Corinthians 5:9; Ephesians 6:6-7; Colossians 1:10; 1 Thessalonians 2:4, 4:1; Hebrews 13:21; 1 John 3:22)?
6. Are you a person of prayer? Continual prayer, with thanksgiving, leads to God’s peace guarding your heart and mind in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:6-7, 1 Thessalonians 5:17-18).
7. Do you place the welfare of others ahead of your own, thus following the example of the Lord Jesus Christ (Matthew 20:25-28; Romans 15:1-3; Philippians 2:3-8)?
8. Do you love others in biblical ways (1 Corinthians 13:4-8a)? By loving in this manner, you will follow the example of our Lord Jesus Christ and become known as His disciple (John 13:34-35, 15:12-13).
9. Are you faithfully using your spiritual gift(s) for God’s glory and for the benefit of others
(Romans 12:3-8; Ephesians 4:1-16; 1 Peter 4:10-11)?
10. Do you regularly worship the Lord, remaining in fellowship and in ministry with other believers (Psalm 29:1-2, 122:1; John 4:23-24; Hebrews 10:24-25; 1 Peter 2:5; 1 John 1:7)?
11. Are you ready at all times to give testimony for the hope that is within you (1 Peter 3:15), giving glory to the Lord with your life (Matthew 5:16), seeking to reconcile others to God, and discipling them to walk in His way (Matthew 28:19-20; 2 Corinthians 5:18-20)?
God’s Great Love Shown
God loves you and wants you to experience peace and life—abundant and eternal.
The Bible says…
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16
“We have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Romans 5:1
“I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” John 10:10
Why don’t most people have this peace and abundant life that God planned for us to have?
We Need a Savior
God created us in His own image to have an abundant life. He did not make us as robots to automatically love and obey him. God gave us a will and freedom of choice.
We chose to disobey God and go our own willful way. We still make this choice today. This results in separation from God.
The Bible says…
“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Romans 3:23
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 6:23
“But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear.” Isaiah 59:2
“There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death.” Proverbs 14:2
Jesus Paid the Penalty
Jesus Christ died on the Cross and rose from the grave. He paid the penalty for our sin and bridged the gap between God and people.
The Bible says…
“But when this priest (Jesus) had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God.” Hebrews 10:12
“...the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.” 1 John 1:7
“For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” 1 Timothy 2:5
“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
“Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Romans 10:13
“For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” John 3:17
Receive Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord We must trust Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and receive Him by personal invitation.
The Bible says…
“Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.” John 1:12
“That if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Romans 10:9
Jesus is the Only Way
“Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:12
Confess and Believe
”That if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.” Romans 10:9-10
God, I have been living my life my own way. I need you to take over, forgive my sins, and be the Lord of my life. I believe that when Your Son, Jesus Christ, came to this earth and died on the cross, He took my punishment, and rose again, freeing me from the penalty of all the wrong things I have done. My good deeds could not save me, but Jesus did. I am now made perfect through the blood of His sacrifice and I will spend eternity with you in heaven. Thank you that there is no longer a barrier
between You and me, and that I can share my life with you in Your Holy Presence. Amen.
Assurance of Salvation
Jesus said: “I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life.” John 5:24
“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade - kept in heaven for you.” 1 Peter 1:3-4
“...Rejoice that your names are written in heaven.” Luke 10:20
“He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life. 1 John 5:12-13
Prayer Principles Taught in the Lord’s Prayer
Matthew 6:9-13; Luke 11:1-4
Principle 1: The Paternal Need
Scripture: “Our Father”
Hebrews 10:19-22, Galatians 4:4-7, Luke 11:9-13, Romans 8:12-17
When you pray, your needs are met by a loving Heavenly Father. This address to your Heavenly Father recognizes your relationship with Him. You must first come on the basis of a relationship secured for you I the atoning blood of Jesus Christ.
Principle 2: God’s Presence
Scripture: “Hallowed Be Your Name”
Psalm 100:4, Psalm 22:3, 1 Chronicles 29:10-19, Psalm 19:14, Psalm 34:3, Ephesians 4:1, Philippians 1:27
Enter God’s Presence through praise. (Psalm 100:4) You have constant access to God’s throne through praise and worship. When we pray: “Lord, Hallowed by your Name,” does our life proclaim it, or just our mouth? Our desire first and foremost should be to Glorify the Lord by the way we live.
Principle 3: God’s Priorities
Scripture: “Thy Kingdom Come, Thy Will Be Done”
Matthew 6:33, Romans 14:7, 2 Peter 3:10-12, Romans 8:4-14
Declare that His Kingdom priorities will be established in your life, your loved ones (family), your church and your nation. Pray that God would set up His kingdom priorities in your heart and life every day.
Principle 4: God’s Provision
Scripture: “Give Us…”
Matthew 6:11, Philippians 4:19, John 15:7-8
Jesus taught us to pray daily asking for Him to supply our needs. Pray that God would meet your needs: physically, spiritually, emotionally, and financially.
Principle 5: God’s Forgiveness
Scripture: “And Forgive Us…”
1 John 1:9, Matthew 6:12, 14-15, Psalm 51, Hebrews 9:14
We need to ask God’s forgiveness, and we need to forgive others. Ask the Lord to cleanse your heart and to help you walk in His forgiveness daily.
Principle 6: Power Over Satan
Scripture: “Lead us Not into Temptation, but Deliver Us from Evil”
Matthew 6:13, James 4:7, Matthew 26:41, Luke 22:32, 1 Corinthians 10:13
Ask God to deliver you from temptation. (1 Corinthians 10:13) Pray a hedge of protection about yourself and your loved ones. (Job 1:9, Psalm 91). Resist the enemy and he will flee. (James 4:7)
Principle 7: Divine Partnership
Scripture: “For Thine is the Kingdom, and the Power, and the Glory, Forever.”
Matthew 9:35-38, 2 Timothy 4:18, Luke 10:19, John 17:22, Matthew 28:18-20
God daily calls us to partner with Him in the Harvest. (Matthew 9:35-38) We can be a part of His plans by daily walking in relationship with the Lord and communing with Him in prayer. (Matthew 28:18-20 Remembering to always give Him all the praise and the glory for who He is and what He has done.
Observations from the Gospels about the Prayer Life of Jesus
A. How Jesus prayed:
1. He made prayer a priority and a frequent practice. (Matthew 14:23, Mark 1:35, Luke 5:16)
2. He prayed knowing the Father heard Him always. (John 11:41-42)
3. He prayed alone. (Matthew 14:23)
4. He prayed specifically and persistently, but always in submission to God and in accordance with the will of the Father. (Matthew 26:36-44)
B. When Jesus prayed:
1. He consistently prayed in the beginning, during, and at the close of His Ministry. (Luke 3:21, 5:16, 23:46)
2. He prayed after ministering all day. (Matthew 14:23, Mark 1:35)
3. He prayed after ministering through the evening. (Mark 1:32-35)
4. He prayed all night. (Luke 6:12)
5. He prayed in the midst of His own suffering. (Luke 23:34)
6. He prayed before making major decisions. (Luke 6:12-13)
7. He prayed in the midst of a trial. (Matthew 26:36-44)
C. What Jesus Prayed and What He Taught about Prayer:
1. He taught His Disciples the basics of prayer. (Matthew 6:9-13, Luke 11:1-4)
2. He demonstrated How to Pray. (John 17)
3. He prayed for the strengthening of others. (Luke 22:32)
4. he prayed for His Disciples and for the Disciples who were to follow. (John 17:20)
5. He prayed for God’s forgiveness of those who were His enemies. (Luke 23:34)
Parents and Children
It is the solemn obligation of parents to give their children the instruction and correction that belong to a Christian upbringing. Parents should be examples of Christian life and conduct, caring more for their children’s salvation and hearts than for their jobs, professions, ministry in the church, or social standing. (Psalm 127:3)
1. According to Paul’s word in Ephesians 6:4 and Colossians 3:21, as well as God’s instruction in many Old Testament passages (Genesis 18:19, Deuteronomy 6:7, Psalm 78:5, Proverbs 4:1-4 and 6:20), it is the responsibility of parents to give their children the upbringing that prepares them for lives pleasing to God. It is the family, not the church or church school that is primarily responsible for the Biblical and spiritual training of the children. Church and church school can only assist and affirm parental training.
2. The very core of Christian nurture is this: The heart of the father must be turned to the heart of the child in order to bring the heart of the child to the heart of the Savior (Luke 1:17).
3. In bringing up their children, parents should show no favoritism, encourage, as well as correct, punish only defiance or intentional wrongdoing, and dedicate their lives in love to their children with hearts of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience (Colossians 3:12-14, 21).
4. Here are fifteen steps that parents should take to lead their children to lives of godliness in Christ:
a. Dedicate your children to God at the beginning of their lives
(1 Samuel 1:28, Luke 2:22)
b. Teach your children to fear the Lord and turn away from sin, to love righteousness and to hate evil. Instill in them an awareness of God’s attitude and judgment toward sin (Hebrews 1:9)
c. Teach your children to obey you by loving use of Biblical discipline
(Deuteronomy 8:5, Proverbs 3:11-12, 13:24, 23:13-14, 29:15, 17, Hebrews 12:7)
d. Protect your children from ungodly influences by being aware of Satan’s attempts to destroy them spiritually through attraction to the world or through immoral companions
(Proverbs 13:20, 28:7, 1 John 2:5-17, Psalm 91)
e. Make your children aware that God is always observing and evaluating what they do, think, and say
f. Do all you can to help your children come early in life to personal faith, repentance, and water baptism in Christ (Matthew 19:14, John 3:16)
g. Establish your children in a spiritual church where God’s Word is proclaimed, his righteous standards honored, and the Holy Spirit manifested. Teach them the motto: “I am a friend to all who fear you” (Psalm 119:63, Acts 12:5)
h. Encourage your children to remain separated from the world and to witness and work for God
(2 Corinthians 6:14 - 7:1, James 4:4). Teach them that they are strangers and aliens on this earth (Hebrews 11:13-16), that their real home and citizenship is in heaven with Christ (Philippians 3:20, Colossians 3:1-3)
i. Instruct your children in the importance of the baptism of the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:4-5:8, 2:4, 39)
j. Teach your children that God loves them and has a specific purpose for their lives
(Luke 1:13-17, Romans 8:30, 1 Peter 1:3-9, Jeremiah 29:11-14)
k. Instruct your children daily in God’s Word, both in conversation and family devotions
(Deuteronomy 4:9, 6:5-7, 1 Timothy 4:6, 2 Timothy 3:15)
l. Through example and exhortation, encourage your children to live lives devoted to prayer
(Acts 6:4, Romans 12:12, Ephesians 6:18, James 5:16)
m. Prepare your children to suffer and endure persecution because of righteousness (Matthew 5:10-12). They must know that “everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted.”
(2 Timothy 3:12)
n. Lift your children up to God by constant and earnest intercession (Ephesians 6:18, James 5:16-18)
o. Be an example, and live a consistent Christian Life before them in your actions, words, and deeds.
(James 5:16) WWJD
Please read the Fasting Guide as part of Session #2.
Devotions for Children
A mother’s priority in life should be to raise happy and godly children.
Family Devotions are a great resource for guiding your children to the Lord and allowing them to understand the Lord at an early age.
Scriptures: Deut. 4:9; 6: 5-8; 1 Tim. 4:6; 2 Tim. 3:15, Psalm 127:1-5; Mark 10:14
Children are a reward from the Lord!
The most important thing to remember about family devotions is just to do them!
It doesn’t have to be long.
You don’t have to know everything about the Bible.
Get a children’s devotional book from Berean or Majesty. (I like “Special Times with God” #1 and 2)
The devotion should consist of: sharing, Scripture, talking about the scripture, and prayer. The time of prayer should include prayer for the child or children and any family needs.
Be consistent! Gather together, read, pray and kiss them goodnight.
Develop the habit of praying daily with your children.
Prayers of the Bible*
Solomon’s Prayer for Wisdom: 1 Kings 3:5-12
Solomon’s Prayer of Dedication: 1 Kings 8:22-61; 2 Chronicles 6:12-42
Hezekiah’s Temple Prayer: 2 Kings 19:15-19; Isaiah 37:14-20
David’s Prayer of Thanksgiving: 2 Samuel 7:18-29
David’s Prayer of Repentance: Psalm 51; 1 Chronicles 17:16-27; 1 Chronicles 29:10-19
Job’s Prayer: Job 42:1-6
Jeremiah’s Prayer before the Captivity: Jeremiah 32:16-25
Moses’ Prayer: Exodus 33:12-23
Hannah’s Prayer: 1 Samuel 1:10-11; 2:1-10
Daniel’s Prayer: Daniel 9:3-19
Jonah’s Prayer: Jonah 2:1-9
The Lord’s Prayer: Matthew 6:9-13; Luke 11:1-4
Jesus’ Prayer in Gethsemane: Matthew 26:36-44
Jesus’ Prayer for His Disciples: John 17
Jesus’ Prayers from the Cross: Matthew 27:46; Luke 23:34 and 46
The Disciples’ Prayer: Acts 4:24-31
Paul’s Prayer for the Believers: Ephesians 3:14-21
Paul’s Prayers: Ephesians 1:15-23; Philippians 1:3-11, Colossians 1:9-14; 4:2-4; Philemon 4-7
*Note: This is not an all-inclusive list of prayers in the Bible.
Praying in the Holy Spirit
The Baptism of the Holy Spirit
Jesus said: “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” Acts 1:4-5
“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1:8
Being baptized in the Holy Spirit enables you to walk out who you are in Christ.
· The baptism is a gift from God available to all who believe and obey. Acts 5:32; Acts 2:1-10; Acts 2:14-39
· Tongues are a heavenly language or an earthly language unknown to you. Acts 2:5-12
· The baptism gives you power to be God’s witnesses. It also brings personal boldness and the power of the Spirit into the believer’s life. Acts 1:8-9; Acts 4:31; Acts 2:14-41; Acts 6:8; Romans 15:18-19; 1 Corinthians 2:4
· It enables you to pray. Romans 8:26-27
· It builds you up in your faith. Jude 20; Ephesians 5:18-19, Ephesians 6:18
· This promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off. Acts 2:38-39, Mark16:17-18
Other Scriptures on the Baptism of the Holy Spirit:
Luke 3:16; Luke 11:13; Luke 24:49
John 1:33; John 7:37-39; John 14:26; John 20:22
Acts (the whole book) Acts 2:17; Acts 4:23-31
1 Corinthians 12-14
Footnote: After years of researching people who had received the baptism in the Holy Spirit, it was noted: “Of all the variety of experiences with the Holy Spirit, one thing held true in every case. Whether the Baptism came quietly or with a bang, unexpectedly or after long seeking, the ultimate result was to draw the individual closer to Christ. Jesus Christ was no longer a figure on the page of a history book. Nor, even, a memory from some personal mountaintop experience. His Spirit was with the baptized believer in a present-time, minute-by-minute way, showing them at every turn the nature and personality of Jesus Christ.”
How to Memorize Scripture
Say it aloud.
Say the verse aloud so that you can hear it as well as see it and think it.
Read It! Write the Scripture out.
Read the Scripture. Then write the scripture on an index card and carry it around with you. Pull it out and recite it anytime you have a spare moment.
Say it the same way each time.
Each time you say the verse, do so in this order:
Repeat the Reference
Say it one phrase at a time.
If you find the verse “too big for one bite,” memorize it a phrase at a time, adding each phrase in order till you have the whole verse. Even if you start with just three or four words, say the reference before and after the phrase.
Say it again and again.
The real secret of Scripture memorization is review, review, review. Quote the verses often, asking God for deep understanding and seeking to apply each verse to your life. After the verse is memorized, review it every so often.
The Armor of God
“...Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.” v. 10-11
The Shield of Faith (Ephesians 6:16)
Faith is being sure that God will keep His promises. Faith in God protects you when you are tempted to doubt.
The Helmet of Salvation (Ephesians 6:17)
Put on the Helmet of Salvation by believing that Jesus Christ died for your sins and rose again.
The Breastplate of Righteousness (Ephesians 6:14)
Righteousness is being honest, good, humble, and fair to others. It means standing up for weaker people.
The Belt of Truth (Ephesians 6:14)
Truth keeps us from giving in to the world’s beliefs. Compare your beliefs and actions to the truth of the Word of God.
Feet Prepared with the Gospel of Peace (Ephesians 6:15)
The Gospel of Peace is being right with God and being contented in troubled times. Jesus said peacemakers were blessed.
The Sword the Spirit (Ephesians 6:17)
The Sword of the Spirit is the Word of God. God’s Word is our offensive weapon. When we tell others what the Bible says, the Holy Spirit helps people see their bad thoughts and actions and makes them want to be forgiven.
Forming Good Godly Habits
1 Thessalonians 5:17; Jude 20; 2 Chronicles 7:14-16; Matthew 6:9-15; Matthew 7:7-12; Matthew 26:41
Jesus set aside time every day to pray. How much more should we?
Reading the Bible
1 Timothy 4:11-16; Psalm 119:11
Read the Bible and study God’s Word. Memorize scripture. Attend Bible Studies. Pray and ask the Lord to give you a hunger for the Word of God.
Matthew 12:23; 1 Timothy 4:7-8; 2 Timothy 3:16-17
Spend time with your best friend Jesus every day. Train yourself to be godly.
Go to Church
Go to church for worship, instruction, fellowship, and service.
Christian Fellowship and Friends
Hebrews 10:24-25; James 4:4-10
We need those around that will encourage us in our walk with the Lord.
Keep Your Spiritual House Clean
2 Corinthians 10:5; 1 Corinthians 6:19; James 4:7-10; 1 Thessalonians 4:1-8; 1 John 2:15-17; Colossians 3:1-14
Live a life that would be pleasing to the Lord. WWJD?
Put on the Full Armor of God
You are in a battle, be prepared!
How to Overcome Bad Habits
SCRIPTURES: Ephesians 4:29; Romans 12:1-2; Philippians 2:14; 1 Corinthians 10:13; Galatians 5:16-26; Proverbs 3:5-6; Philippians 4:13; Luke 9:23-25; Revelation 12:11
How do we know they’re bad habits?
A. The Word of God
B. The conviction of the Holy Spirit
C. WWJD - What Would Jesus Do?
Know that God through the Holy Spirit will give you His strength to overcome the bad habits. Philippians 4:13
What to do?
A. Repent: Say you are sorry. 1 John 1:9
B. Pray: Ask God to forgive and cleanse you and give you a new start. Close the doors that have been opened spiritually. Door Openers: drugs, sexual immorality, occult, generational.
C. Renew your mind daily. Romans 12:1-2. You renew your mind by reading, thinking about, and memorizing the Word of God.
D. Purpose in your heart to avoid those things that are bad for you. Luke 9:23-25. (Friends, TV shows, movies, reading materials, music) Remember WWJD?
When you get saved, God comes into your Spirit. God made you with a Body, Mind, Spirit and Soul. God wants to inhabit all areas.
Please read the FREEDOM! booklet as part of Session #4.
Please request the Dedicated and Devoted handout from the Revival Center.
RENEWING YOUR MIND
Your enemy, Satan, will tempt you repeatedly and continually by appealing to your self-oriented feelings and desires. You can resist his onslaughts by cooperating with God’s plan to renew your mind. Salvation is the first step in this process, and a committed life of obedience to God’s Word will insure that your mind will be continually renewed to increasing Christlikeness (based on Genesis 3:1-7; Romans 12:2,
2 Corinthians 2:11; 11:3; Galatians 5:17; Philippians 2:5-8, 13; Hebrews 5:14; James 1:14-15; 1 Peter 5:8; 1 John 4:4).
I. The renewal of your mind with regard to your growth in Christ
A. Renewing your mind is the process by which your thoughts and your will become more and more Christlike. The renewal of your mind is recognized by an increasingly faithful and obedient response to God’s Word (based on Romans 12:1-2; Ephesians 4:22-32; Colossians 3:10-17).
B. The consistent renewing of your mind is an integral part of your spiritual development (Romans 12:2; Ephesians 4:23; Colossians 3:10)
II. The renewal of your mind with regard to your personal responsibilitie
A. Graciously enabled by divine power (John 15:4-5; Philippians 2:13), you are to practice biblical thinking (II Corinthians 10:5; Philippians 4:8-9; Colossians 3:1-2)
B. Your obedience to Scripture furthers the development of a Christlike mind (Hebrews 5:14;
James 1:22-25). Scripture tells us to
1. Hear the Word (Romans 10:17) (e.g., by listening to preaching or teaching from God’s Word);
2. Read the Word (I Timothy 4:13; Revelation 1:3) (e.g., by having daily devotions);
3. Study the Word (I Timothy 2:15) (e.g., by investigating and learning scripturally based principles of living, accurate doctrine, and godly examples to follow)
4. Memorize the Word (Psalm 119:11) (e.g., by reviewing your memory verse cards throughout the day); and
5. Meditate on the Word (Joshua 1:8; Psalm 1:2) (e.g., by thinking of the personal application of God’s promises and commands to you)
By doing the above, you provide opportunities for the Word of Christ to dwell richly within you (Colossians 3:16). Of equal importance, you are to practice the Word especially in known area of needed biblical change. As you continually do this, the spirit of your mind is being renewed to Christlikeness (based on Colossians 3:8-10; Hebrews 5:14).
III. The renewal of your mind within the process of your biblical change
Your old self
Through the Cross of Jesus Christ, your debt of sin has been paid (Romans 5:6-9; Ephesians 1:7; Colossians 2:13-14), and your old self has been crucified with Christ (Romans 6:3-7; Galatians 2:20; Colossians 3:3).
Your new self
Since the old self has been put off and the new self has been put on, you are a totally new person and are empowered by the resurrected life of Jesus Christ to be conformed to His image. (Romans 6:4; 8:11,29; II Corinthians 5:17; Galatians 2:20; Ephesians 4:22-24).
Renewing your mind
As a result, you are directed by God’s Spirit (John 14:26; 16:13; Romans 8:14) and are able to understand the things of God (I Corinthians 2:10-14), which are revealed in His Word (II Timothy 3:16-17; Hebrews 4:12).
Your Old Self
The sinful and destructive practices of your old self are to be put off (Romans 6:12-13; Ephesians 4:17-22; Colossians 3:5-9;Titus 2:11-12).
Your New Self
Putting on Christlike characteristics (Colossians 3:10-17) leads you to please God and edify others instead of simply living to please yourself (Luke 9:23-24; Romans 12:6, 15:2; II Corinthians 5:14-15; Galatians 5:13-17; Philippians 2:3-4)
Renewing Your Mind
As a result, your mind is being continually renewed (Colossians 3:8-10).
Your Old Self
You are continually to consider yourself dead to sin and free from slavery to sin
(Romans 6:6-7, 11-12) and self-gratification (I Peter 1:14).
Your New Self
Faithful and diligent obedience to the Lord enables you to overcome trials (James 1:2-4) and failures (Philippians 3:13-14; I John 1:9) and produces Christlike maturity and fruitfulness in your life (II Peter 1:4-11).
Renewing Your Mind
As a result, continual obedience to the Word of God protects you from delusion and increase your spiritual discernment and sensitivity to sin (Hebrews 5:14; James 1:22).
THE EFFECTS OF UNBIBLICAL THOUGHTS, SPEECH, AND ACTIONS
Living for Jesus Christ requires that you direct your thoughts away from self and toward pleasing the Lord (based on Romans 12:2; II Corinthians 10:5; Ephesians 4:22-24; Colossians 3:1-2, 5-10).
Results of focusing on self in your thought life
Hatred (I John 3:15)
Jealousy/Envy (Galatians 5:20-21)
Fear (I John 4:18)
Rebellion (I Samuel 15:23)
Pride (Proverbs 16:18, 29:23)
Lust (Matthew 5:28)
Resentment/Bitterness (Ephesians 4:31-32)
Anger (Proverbs 16:32, 29:11; James 1:19-20)
Doubt (James 1:6-8)
Selfishness (Philippians 2:3-4)
Anxiety (Philippians 4:6-7)
Deceitfulness (Proverbs 12:20a, 26:24)
Lead to and increase:
Matthew 15:18-20; Romans 1:24-32;
I Corinthians 6:9-10, 12;
Unbiblical speech and actions
May result in:
esp. v. 5 & 10;
I Corinthians 5:1-6,
esp. v. 5;
High Blood Pressure
Bodily Damage also may result from focusing on self in your thought life
I Corinthians 11:28-30;
I John 5:16
As an introduction to this study, read the 1-minute devotion A Practical Method for Overcoming Sin on page 4.
Reciting, memorizing, and reading Scripture can renew our minds and help us overcome bad habits. That’s because God’s Word is not like human words.
God’s Word has transforming power.
1. In the verses below, list (or underline) the different ways the Psalmist connects with God's Word. How does he show respect, commitment, and pleasure in God’s Word?
Psalm 119:9-16: "How can a young person stay pure? By obeying your word. 10 I have tried hard to find you— don’t let me
wander from your commands. 11 I have hidden your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you. 12 I praise you, O Lord; teach me your decrees. 13 I have recited aloud all the
regulations you have given us. 14 I have rejoiced in your laws as much as in riches. 15 I will study your commandments and
reflect on your ways. 16 I will delight in your decrees and not forget your word."
2. Where does transformation start? Do you ever wonder why some Christians grow quickly and behave in godly ways while others live pretty much like the rest of the world? Many people experience an initial burst of renewal when they give their lives to Christ but eventually lose it. Others maintain that sense of
renewal throughout their lives. What do you think accounts for this difference? Why is renewal a lifelong process?
Romans 12:1-2: Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice,
holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper
worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
3. Do you see the process of renewal as active or passive? Why is it important for our beliefs to be aggressively protected in our thoughts?
2 Corinthians 10:5: We demolish arguments and every
pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
4. Note the two aspects of renewal in the verses below.
Philippians 4:8-9: Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. 9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.
Using an online Topical Bible, find several verses dealing with specific sins you're struggling with.
Besides the examples above, you might look up bitterness,
forgiveness, worry, fear, jealousy, envy, patience, joy, thoughts, etc.
Write the verses on 3x5 cards and meditate on them daily.
A Practical Method for Overcoming Sin
"I can't change!"
Ever felt that way?
Years ago I discovered a way that helps me deal with specific sins in my life.
I believe it will work for anyone who does it wholeheartedly out of love for the Lord (Colossians 3:23).
Here's what I do: I look for Scriptures dealing with a sin I'm struggling to overcome, write pertinent verses on 3x5 cards, and go over the verses daily, meditating on their truth. Sometimes I go over them two to three times throughout the day.
This might sound simplistic, but it works because the Bible is alive and active and able to penetrate our hearts and minds (Hebrews 4:12).
God's Word will always accomplish its purposes in our lives. It judges us when we refuse to repent, and it changes us when we submit to its truth (Isaiah 55:10-11).
I can't change myself. But God's Spirit and His Word can change me. When I actively seek that change, I show my love for the Lord (John 14:21).
Here are a few examples:
If you have a problem with anger, meditate on these
verses: Psalm 37:8; Ephesians 4:26-27; Proverbs 16:32.
Fear & worry: 1 Peter 5:7; Matthew 6:30-34;
Philippians 4:6-7; Matthew 11:28-30.
Lack of self-control: Proverbs 25:28; 2 Peter 1:5-10.
When you let your mind wander, where does it go?
I don’t want to tell you how often mine heads straight to dirty thoughts—not porno, but bitter memories or worries or self-pity. This is especially true when I’m going through a difficulty.
Did you know that we speak at a rate of 120 words a minute and think at a rate of 1300 words a minute?
That means negative thoughts can bury us in a pit of self-despair 10 times faster than spoken words.
No wonder Scripture says, “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ”
(2 Corinthians 10:5).
If you’re struggling in some area of your life, it’s likely your thoughts are involved. Take time today to ask God to help you take your thoughts captive.
So many of my problems begin in my thoughts…I think the worst about a situation or dwell on the negatives. I decide something is hopeless or meaningless and conclude I can’t be happy unless it changes.
There’s a two-step answer to my dilemma:
“… we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” 2 Corinthians 10:5
1. Take my thoughts captive—make a conscious decision to quit thinking negatively.
2. Make my thoughts obedient to Christ—dwell on God’s Truth. For example:
God can bring good out of every situation. (Romans 8:28)
God will never, ever, ever leave me. (Hebrews 13:5)
Peace comes by dwelling on good things. (Philippians 4:8)
And no matter what else happens, I can rejoice in my salvation! (Philippians 3:7-9)
If you are struggling with negative thoughts, ask the Lord to help you implement His two-step solution.
Everyone has different strengths and weaknesses, and some of us find it especially challenging to "take our thoughts captive"
(2 Corinthians 10:3-6).
I can over-think things and make myself miserable. Others can under-think and become irresponsible. These two steps can keep over and under thinkers on track.
1. Dwell on what's good in your life (Philippians 4:8-9).
What if we can't think of anything good? Usually we need to
re-focus. But even when our life is at its worst, we can always dwell on these:
Our salvation (Romans 6:23).
Our knowledge that one day all suffering will end (Rev. 21:4).
Scripture passages and songs that give us hope and strength (Colossians 3:16).
2. Guard your heart (Proverbs 4:23).
Make sure that the influences in your life are uplifting. That
Entertainment (TV, movies, etc.) (Psalm 101:3).
Music (Ephesians 5:18-20).
Relationships - as much as it depends on you to choose the right companions (1 Corinthians 15:33).
Sleep and proper nutrition are also necessary for right thinking. (Eat, Rest, Cry.)
I'm thankful we serve a supernatural God who gives us practical ways to deal with life!
The Power of Negative Self-Talk
Studies show our normal rate of talking is 120 words a minute, but we can think at a rate of 1300 words a minute.*
No wonder I sometimes get depressed when I dwell on my
problems. Imagine ten minutes of negative self-talk. That’s 13,000 negative, sad, angry, and discouraging words pumped into my soul.
2 Corinthians 10:5 says, “We demolish arguments and every
pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”
When we begin to think negative thoughts, we must spring into action…demolishing and taking thoughts captive.
What a great picture of warfare—a reminder that most battles are won or lost in our minds.
What are some practical ways to fight these enemy thoughts?
Memorize Bible verses related to our struggles
Interrupt negative thoughts by counting our blessings
Praise God instead when negative thoughts come
So next time the battle begins, let’s fight!
*Tim Hansel, Holy Sweat (Waco, TX: Word, 1987), 102-3 as quoted in Having a Mary Spirit by Joanna Weaver, page116.
We often think of spiritual "strongholds" as something non-Christians have.
But we should also examine our own lives for strongholds. They typically begin in our thoughts. That's why Scripture warns us to take our thoughts captive (2 Corinthians 10:3-5).
It might be a relationship problem we bitterly "debate" in our thoughts.
It might be an injustice or offense we've obsessively relived in our thoughts, memorizing each detail.
It might be an unrealistic fear that haunts us.
It might be an ungodly desire we enjoy pondering.
We need to take those thoughts captive:
1. Replacing thoughts with prayers - not prayers that rehash problems, but prayers that lift the situation to the Lord (Philippians 4:6).
2. Replacing thoughts with encouraging Scripture passages (Colossians 3:16).
3. Replacing negative thoughts with positive thoughts, praise and thanksgiving (Philippians 4:8).
Our thoughts create our mood and affect our actions (Luke 6:45).
Taking thoughts captive is a primary step in dealing with
Think about it!
Some babies calm down when their moms play music. The babies begin listening to the music instead of their own cries.
I'm discovering I sometimes need the same kind of "music
My form of "crying" is allowing negative thoughts to roll over and over in my mind causing discouragement.
Playing praise music can replace my negative thoughts with
positive, encouraging words about the Lord.
The psalmists were often troubled with negative thoughts, fears, and worries. Perhaps that's why we often read things like this:
“Come, let us sing for joy to the LORD.… Sing praise to the name of the Lord...Make a joyful noise.” Psalm 95:1; 7:17; 66:1
When our minds are spinning with negative, useless, repetitive thoughts, it's time to turn on the praise music.
"He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire...He has given me a new song to sing, a hymn of praise to our God." Psalm 40:2-3
Set Your Mind or Set Your Alarm
I was struggling.
I had good reasons to be concerned. But I was letting my thoughts rule.
I read Psalm 31:15:
"My times are in your hands; deliver me from the hands of my enemies..."
I realized that my real enemies were not people or
circumstances. My real enemies were negative thoughts, worries and self-pity. I wasn't trusting that God could work all things for my good (Romans 8:28).
I wasn't letting Him comfort me (2 Corinthians 1:3-4).
My struggle was so strong, that I set an alarm for every hour
during the daytime. The alarms reminded me to take a few minutes each hour to pray, read Scripture, or sing a praise song, taking my thoughts captive (2 Corinthians 10:5).
The more I set my mind on Jesus, the healthier my thoughts.
Are you struggling with a situation? Perhaps you too should set an alarm and focus regularly on God's promises.