IV The Christian Walk
(Pastor Ian C. Kurylyk)
“Walk in newness of life “
The One Who Has Believed Is Called to a New Daily Walk of Holiness
a. “As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation” (I Peter 1:14-16). Everyday life is the place where salvation is lived out.
b. “Furthermore then we beseech you, brethren, and exhort 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” (I Thessalonians 4:1).
Christians Are Soldiers in a Spiritual Battle
We are to fight the Lord's battles, not with guns and bombs, but by being faithful to the truths of God's Word. “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:10-12).
Christians Are to Realize That They Have Been Saved to Serve God with Their Lives
a. Nothing else is acceptable to God and nothing else makes the true believer happy. “Only fear the LORD, and serve him in truth with all your heart: for consider how great things he hath done for you” (I Samuel 12:24).
b. The Christian is always to do what is right in the many choices of life. “He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake” (Psalm 23:3).
c. Each believer is to find out God's will for his life particularly and fulfill it. “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. in all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths” (Proverbs 3:5-6).
d. God gives special abilities called spiritual gifts to all His children for the work He has for us to do. “Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant... But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal” (I Corinthians 12:1, 7).
Christians Are Called to Advance Day-by-Day in Their Spiritual Life And to Grow in Grace
a. Initial salvation is a work of pure grace. Then, having been born again, we are also to grow to spiritual maturity by that grace and within that grace. “But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen” (II Peter 3:18).
b. Even the apostle was never content with his spiritual attainments as a Christian, but always pressed on to be closer to the Lord in fellowship and walk. “Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:12-14).
God Promises Rewards for Faithfulness in Christians
a. The Bible teaches that there is a distinct place of judgment for Christians after life in this world is over. “ But why dost thou judge thy brother? or why dost thou set at nought thy brother? for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ. For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God. So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God” (Romans 14:10-12).
b. This is not a judgment to determine entrance to heaven. That is all determined before life is over by acceptance or rejection of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Nevertheless, God judges His children as a master of the house requires his servants to give account of their workmanship and behaviour so he can reward accordingly. “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (II Timothy 2:15).
c. The Christian is to live his present life with the conviction that one day we will have to give account for all we do. “Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad” (II Corinthians 5:9-10).
d. God's rewards for the faithful can be compared to the prize given to an athlete who runs his race successfully. The athlete in Bible times received a victors's crown in honour of his accomplishment. “Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible” (I Corinthians 9:24-25).
e. There is a specific reward designated in the Bible for patient faithfulness under trial. “Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him” (James 1:12). The crown of life is also promised to the suffering Christians of Smyrna in Revelation 2:10.
f. Note also carefully the reward crowns promised in II Timothy 4:8, I Thessalonians 2:19, and I Peter 5:4.
Christians Must Walk Carefully to Avoid Spiritual Snares and Enticements to Sin
a. The Bible word describing this kind of lifestyle is “cirmcumspectly”. “See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise” (Ephesians 5:15). The root meaning of the word here is “looking on all sides” while walking.
b. Another key word of the Bible to describe the God-honouring Christian life is “sober”. “But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine: That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience. The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children” (Titus 2:1-4).
c. Christians are called “disciples” of the Lord. To be a disciple we must live disciplined lives. We must be, as the book of Romans teaches us, “fervent in spirit; serving the Lord” (Romans 12:11b).
The Bible Contains Many Challenges on How We Should Walk
a. Walk in love. “Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour” (Ephesians 5:1-2).
b. Walk in the light. “But 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” (I John 1:7).
c. Walk in the Spirit. “This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh” (Galatians 5:16).
d. Walk worthy of your salvation calling. “I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love” (Ephesians 4:1-2).