A Quick Start Guide to Christianity
A Christian is a follower, a disciple of Jesus Christ, a person that believes that Jesus is God!
All of the religions of the world focus on what man can do to make amends for his own shortcomings. This is called work. This is man's effort to reach God. Christianity is the opposite of religion. It is a relationship with God. In Christianity, God, because of His love for us, came to us in the virgin birth of Jesus.
In the beginning of the Bible we are told how God created the world, how He created mankind in His own image. This is the image/ability of mankind to think, reason, understand, and have emotions. Yes, the world is created by God. It is impossible for something to come from nothing and it is even more impossible for life to come from non-life. The Bible tells us that mankind was created for Fellowship with God, to have a relationship with God in the Image that God created us.
As we all know, Adam and Eve disobeyed God and sinned. Sin separated now sinful mankind from the Holy God. The Earth is a fallen place where sin is being lived out in disobedience, sickness and death, all at the displeasure of God. Heaven is where God's will is being obeyed and Heaven is out of the presence of disobedience, sickness, sin and death.
This is where Jesus comes in. Jesus being God, He created us, yet man's sin has separated us from God. In time, God took on the form of a man (became a physical man). In His body Jesus/God gave Himself and died on the cross, dying in the physical so we can now have a Spiritual relationship with God. Three days later Jesus rose from death (showed Himself to be Alive). Jesus is now Alive and in a Spiritual body. The Bible tells us that our physical eyes cannot see the Spirit/Heavenly realm, just as we cannot see radio waves though they exist.
Jesus said, "My kingdom is not of this world." John 18:36 Jesus is referring to His kingdom where man is reunited with God in the Holy Spirit.
A Christian is a person who acknowledges their own human sinful nature and accepts the Love of God to die on a cross for us. Being God He then Resurrected from death and currently is reuniting us into a living Spiritual Life with Himself/God.
God Bless You!
David Anson Brown
To desire to be a Christian is to desire to be a Child of God, to be a person in a personal relationship with God.
To become a Christian is to partake in the actual event of receiving God the Holy Spirit within our own human spirit, therefore creating a new Spiritual life inside of us. It is this Spiritual life that unites us and makes us a child of God our Father.
In other words Christianity is not an Idea nor a Philosophy. Christianity is an event, specifically the event of God giving us each personally a new Spiritual Birth. This new Birth is also called the "Born Again" or "Born from Above" event.
Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be Born Again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. ~ John 3:3
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold all things are become new. ~ 2 Corinthians 5:17
The Bible tells us what the basic series of events are that make Christianity real time events and not ideas or philosophies about life.
God created mankind to live forever so that we can get to know God forever.
Mankind disobeyed God and entered into a relationship with sin and with sin came death (separation from God).
Mankind is now separated from God. God as Jesus then came to mankind by taking on the form and appearance of a human. God became a human to interact with us on our human level.
God's entrance into the physical world as the physical person Jesus was accomplished via the Virgin Birth by Mary.
Jesus then died on the cross. Sin requires death and only through death can sin be completely removed. To die is the end and fortunately for us the death of Jesus on the cross is the end of sin as it is His death that we acknowledge was for us. Sin is dead and never to be resurrected again.
Three days later Jesus Resurrected from death to Life providing the opportunity for a new Spiritual life for us in the Resurrection Life of Jesus.
Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the Gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; by which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures; and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures: ~ 1 Corinthians 15:1-4
Gospel means Good News. Eternal Life in the Resurrection Life of Jesus Christ is the Good News of Christianity.
Since Jesus died for us there is only one thing for us to do and that is to Accept what Jesus did for us. This is called Faith and Trust. We have faith that Jesus is Alive even after He suffered and died. We have faith that the same Resurrection Life that Jesus now lives we too also live.
Faith is a wonderful thing! Faith is trust, we trust Jesus. Faith excludes works. It would seem natural to have to do something in order to gain the attention of God however we don't. We already have God's attention. What God desires is for us to have a personal relationship with Him. We can only have a relationship when we acknowledge the existence of the other person, in this case God.
The Bible tells us that we are created to get to know God and that every moment in life is an opportunity to know Him. God wants very much for each and every person to acknowledge and to accept Him.
We then, as workers together with Him, beseech you also that ye receive not the grace of God in vain. For He saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succored (helped/aided) thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation. ~ 2 Corinthians 6:1-2
In the Bible when people became Christians they took action, they got Baptized in water, fellowshipped with other Christians, prayed and read the Bible and served and proclaimed Jesus to others. They also took the very important step of destroying in fire the elements of their past life that are unpleasing to God. It is important to rid our lives of the old unpleasing ways and that means destroying whatever does not glorify God. Sometimes it's drugs, pornography, music, movies, books or clothing. Whatever it is, destroy it in acknowledgment that it has been destroying your soul and your relationship with God.
To become a Christian is to acknowledge that Jesus is God and to acknowledge that Jesus is Alive and with us at every moment. To acknowledge God is to talk to God, this is called prayer.
God I acknowledge you in the existence of Jesus Christ and I acknowledge your Love for me to come as a human and to die on the cross for me. I too love you and I desire to live my life in a relationship with you. Thank you that you love me. Thank you that you hear me when I call upon your name. I accept Your death and Your blood as the full penalty for all of my sins and I acknowledge that by the blood of Jesus I am now clean. I ask that you, having cleansed me, will now in Your Spirit come into my life and make me Your child. God I give You my life this day to take and to do with whatever You will. I now walk in faith day by day and moment by moment in the love and Resurrection life of Jesus. To the glory of God and the praise of His Holy Angels and to the delight of all the Saints of Heaven I now confess that Jesus is my God, my Lord, my Savior, my Companion, and also my Friend. In the name of Jesus I pray. Amen.
And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. ~ 1 John 5:11
God Bless you,
David Anson Brown
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
Having now given your life to the Lord Jesus you might have the feeling of what do I do now? Here are some simple guidelines of what to do next to help you grow in your loving relationship with God the Lord Christ Jesus.
Love the Lord with all of your heart and with all of your soul and with all your strength and with all of your mind, and, Love your neighbor as yourself. ~ Deuteronomy 6:5/Luke 10:27
Love means "commitment to the highest good" to love is to commit to the highest good that is possible for another person. The greatest love and highest commitment possible is a relationship with God in Jesus Christ.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. ~ JOHN 1:1
It is crucial to read the Bible especially in today's hectic society. Unfortunately you will not get God's word reinforced to you on the nightly news, or in any other segment of society. Reading daily, even one or two sentences in the morning and evening will help to fill your days with God's inspiration and love.
The Bible is God's actual word.
The Bible has been remarkably well preserved and is an accurate translation of what God intends for us to know about him.
Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. ~ 1 THESSALONIANS 5:16-18
Prayer is our way of communicating with God. As with any relationship communication is crucial. Prayer isn't the only thing Christians have; but it is the best thing we have. While God desires to do many things for us He will not do some of them unless we specifically ask Him in prayer. Jesus said "you have not because you ask not."
Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God. ~ ACTS 2:46
Fellowship, attending church and other Christian functions is an anchor for our faith. Being around other Christians is the best way to see how God is working in the lives of other people, and it is the best way to be strengthened and built up in your own Christian walk.
Be still, and know that I am God. ~ PSALMS 46:10
In becoming a Christian you now have the strength through Jesus to overcome worldly problems and addictions. Yes - it is necessary to turn from past deeds. Deeds that inside your heart you known to be wrong, even slightly wrong.
Whoever acknowledges Me before men, I will also acknowledge him before my Father in heaven. But whoever disowns Me before men I will disown him before My Father in heaven. ~ MATTHEW 10:27
Only God has the ability to forgive sin and the ability to cleanse us from our sin. When we come to Jesus, we come directly to God, and not to man. God then instructs us through the Bible in how to have a relationship with Himself.
We worship God in His glory. We want to be recognized for who we are and likewise we should recognize God for who God is. That means worshiping God the way He has asked us to worship Him in the Bible.
Not necessary the case: while accepting Jesus does give us great peace, like knowing that when you die you will go to heaven. At times your faith in Jesus will require great endurance, as your faith is put to the test. We walk with Jesus by faith and not by emotions, because our faith will endure while our emotions fluctuate and change daily.
Remember Jesus loves us and is in heaven right now praying for us.
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart. I will be found by you," declares the Lord. ~ JEREMIAH 29:11-13
God Loves you, and wants to have a relationship with you, and like every relationship, it takes two individuals. Any relationship is only as good as the effort that is put into it by the individuals involved. Put some effort into a relationship with God, and be Truly Blessed.
Criteria for Christian Baptism
And Jesus came and spake unto them [Disciples], saying, All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach [Disciple] all Nations, *baptizing them in the Name of the Father, and of the Son [Jesus], and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen. ~ Matthew 28:18-20
Now if Christ be preached that He [Jesus] rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen: And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain. Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that He raised up Christ: whom He raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not. For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins. Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable. But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. For since by man [Adam] came death, by man [Jesus] came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at His [2nd] coming. Then cometh the end [of mans' seperation from God], when He [Jesus] shall have delivered up the Kingdom to God, even the Father; when He [Jesus] shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. For He must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. ~ 1 Corinthians 15:12-26
But some man will say, How are the dead raised up? and with what body do they come? Thou fool, that which thou sowest [seeds of plants] is not quickened [sprouted], except it die: And that which thou sowest, thou sowest not that body that shall be, but bare grain [seed], it may chance of wheat, or of some other grain: But God giveth it a [flower] body as it hath pleased Him, and to every seed his own body. All flesh is not the same flesh: but there is one kind of flesh of men, another flesh of beasts, another of fishes, and another of birds. There are also celestial [stars] bodies, and bodies [planets - moons] terrestrial: but the glory of the celestial is one, and the glory of the terrestrial is another. There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars: for one star differeth from another star in glory. So also is the resurrection of the dead. It [human body] is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption: It is sown in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power: It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven. As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy: and as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly. And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly. Now this I say, brethren, *that [physical] flesh and blood cannot inherit the [sternal] Kingdom of God; neither doth [sin] corruption inherit [Heaven] incorruption. ~ 1 Corinthians 15:35-50
And unto Adam He [God] said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: *for [bodily] dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return. ~ Genesis 3:17-19
And after six days [six, incomplete not yet a permanent transfiguration] Jesus taketh Peter, James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into an high mountain apart [outside of Israel], And was transfigured before them: and His face did shine as the sun, and His raiment was white as the light. And, behold, there appeared unto them Moses [Law] and Elias (Elijah) [Prophets] talking with Him. ... While he (Peter) yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is My beloved Son, in whom I Am well pleased; hear ye Him. And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their face, and were sore afraid. And Jesus came and touched them, and said, Arise [Resurrection], and be not afraid. And when they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no man, save Jesus only. - Note: Jesus was without sin and therefore could be bodily Transfigured something sinful humans cannot do we need to first die and separate from our physical body of sin (Romans 8:3) and then we Christians receive our new transfigured (1 Corinthians 15:35-55) bodies. ~ Matthew 17:1-8
As ye [Christian] have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in Him: Rooted and built up in Him, and [established] stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving. Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. For in [Jesus] Him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. And ye are complete in Him, which is the head of all principality and power: In whom also ye are [spiritually] circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision [new heart; mind, soul and spirit] of Christ: *Buried with Him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen [resurection] with Him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised Him from the dead. And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath He quickened [made alive] together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses; Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to His cross; And having spoiled [Satanic] principalities and [Demonic] powers, He [Jesus] made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it. Let no man therefore judge you in meat [food], or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body [essence of reality] is of Christ. ~ Colossians 2:6-17
Criteria for Christian Communion
And as they were eating, Jesus took [Communion] bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the Disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is My Body. And He took the [Communion] cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; For this is My Blood of the New Testament, which is shed [after the atoning death on the cross] for many for the remission of sins. But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that [Heavenly] day when I drink it new with you in My Father's Kingdom. ~ Matthew 26:26-29
For I [Apostle Paul] have received of the Lord [Jesus] that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus *the same night in which He was betrayed [by Judas] took bread ... - Note: The Communion represents and is a part of the Levitical Feats of "The Lord's Passover" Jesus was betrayed on the night of the Passover Feast [14th of Nisan - Leviticus 23:5]. The very next day, the day of the crucifixion (cross) of Jesus is the Levitical Feast the "Feast of Unleavened Bread" [15th of Nisan - Leviticus 23:6] then that first day of the week [Sunday] is the Feast of Firstfruits [Leviticus 23:7] - Jesus Resurrected on Sunday the Feast of Firstfruits and began (John 20:22) to give individually to each one of His disciples the Firstfruits of His Holy, eternal resurrection life - Romans 8:23 And not only they [all of creation groans for redemption], but ourselves also, which have *the Firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption [from Children of God to Sons of God], to wit, the redemption of our body. ~ 1 Corinthians 11:23
Christian Communion - The New Testament - The body [both the physical and the resurrection body of Jesus] and the blood [both the physical blood and the resurrection - eternal life, spiritual blood] of Jesus Christ: 1 Corinthians 11:23-32 For I [Apostle Paul] have received of the Lord [Jesus] that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which He was betrayed took bread: And when He had given thanks, He brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is *My body [representing both the physical body and resurrection (spiritual) body of Jesus], which [physical body] is broken for you: this do in remembrance of Me. After the same manner also He took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the New Testament in My blood [both physical blood and resurrection Spirit-life blood]: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of Me. *For as often as ye eat *this [unleavened] bread, and drink this [grape and water mingled] cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come. Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily [thinking they are not a sinner], shall be guilty of the [sacrifice for our sins] body and blood of the Lord. **But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, **not discerning the Lord's body [that the physical body of Jesus was given physically for our sin on the cross (redemption) and that the Spiritual body of Jesus is given to us from His eternal life resurrection (Salvation)]. For this cause [not knowing that the same body of Jesus from the cross is the same body that resurrected and is for our eternal, resurrection life, salvation] many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep [are unaware of the power and of the pending resurrection in our own life]. For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. But when we are judged, we are chastened (Hebrews 12:6) of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.
Note: The 'cup' is in reference to both the physical life-blood and the Spiritual life-blood of Jesus. The Communion of Jesus Christ represents both the body on the cross and the resurrection life body of Jesus. The New Testament - The Communion of Jesus Christ represents both the Redemption (cross) and Salvation (resurrection) body of Jesus Christ. - Also Note: Jesus being without sin in His body (Matthew 17:2), bodily resurrected in His same body. We having sin our own physical body we vacate our physical body and it returns to dust [Genesis 3:19] then we each receive a new spiritual body - not a new physical body [not a reincarnation of a physical body] but a new eternal spiritual body for the purposes of our [continuing] eternal spiritual life.
God Bless You!
David Anson Brown