If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. 2 Cor 5:17
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These pages are designed to aid study or investigation for Christian discipleship through individual Bible study, Cell groups, Home groups, or meeting one to one. The questions could be used alone allowing each person to use their own Bible.
God is at work in our lives; He transforms our situations. As we walk with Him through life He brings a new dynamic which makes a new kind of sense to life. These things happen when a person receives Jesus into their lives, the fullness however is worked out as we engage with God in the challenges of life.
Our life with God is marked by new qualities of faith, hope and love. It is these qualities that are valued by God in our lives, they are also the evidence of God being at work in us.
God changes us from the inside. Our personality, the essence of who we are, stays the same, but our character, how we handle hardship, changes to reflect God. This change happens as God lives in us through the spiritual life by such dynamics as faith, hope and love. These dynamics are the factors that really count in life; they are the marks of a truly great person.
1 Corinthians 13:11 When I was a child, I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child. But when I grew up, I put away childish things.12 Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity.* All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.
13 Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.
Choosing God changes our whole life now and in the future. Have a look at this passage from the Bible - 1 Peter 1:3-5
1 Peter 1:3-5 3 All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is by his great mercy that we have been born again, because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Now we live with great expectation,4 and we have a priceless inheritance—an inheritance that is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay.5 And through your faith, God is protecting you by his power until you receive this salvation, which is ready to be revealed on the last day for all to see.
Love is wonderful to receive, and risky to give. We desire God’s unconditional love, but are not so forthcoming in showing love to others. When our heavenly Father loves us, He is extending trust, asking if we can love others with that love. When we do, we show we trust Him to cover our risk. We are built up by His love, and in turn build up others through His love. When we fail to, we find love goes stale and eventually dies when kept to ourselves.
1 John 3:16-18 16 We know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us. So we also ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters.17 If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister* in need but shows no compassion—how can God's love be in that person?
18 Dear children, let's not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions.
Love acts for the best interests of others. We don’t know how to live like this, and when we try, we can feel a prisoner to our selfishness God by His power frees us to love.
Jesus’s practical love for us is what makes it possible for us to love! This is what He says: John 15
John 15:7-12 7 But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted!8 When you produce much fruit, you are my true disciples. This brings great glory to my Father.
9 "I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love.10 When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father's commandments and remain in his love.11 I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow!12 This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you.
Faith is trusting God that what He says is true. What He says comes through two key avenues. Firstly, what He has revealed of Himself and His purposes through the Bible. Secondly and more subjectively, what He has revealed for us personally through our relationship with Him. Often what He has said goes against what our senses or our culture assume to be the case. Faith is worked out as we make decisions based on our trust of Him and His revelation.
Hebrews 11:1 Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.
Romans 1: 16 For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes—the Jew first and also the Gentile.*17 This Good News tells us how God makes us right in his sight. This is accomplished from start to finish by faith. As the Scriptures say, "It is through faith that a righteous person has life."*
There is a huge difference between believing facts, and living your life based on the fact. Most believe the world goes round the sun, but few make decisions based on the fact. What I believe about gravity affects the way I act on tall buildings. What we believe about a person’s honesty will influence the way we relate to them. In the same way there is a huge difference between believing facts about God, and trusting Him. The first makes you religious, the trust changes your life.
Hebrews 11:11 It was by faith that even Sarah was able to have a child, though she was barren and was too old. She believed* that God would keep his promise.12 And so a whole nation came from this one man who was as good as dead—a nation with so many people that, like the stars in the sky and the sand on the seashore, there is no way to count them.
People with hope can overcome in the most difficult circumstances. Hope is not some vague wish for better things. Our hope is not in a desired outcome but in a person; Jesus who rules the universe. When circumstances are not what we would want then we look in hope for Jesus to reveal His goodness in the situation.
1 Peter 1: 13 Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed.
Peace is a quality that is most evident by its absence, and the poor behaviour of those who struggle because they are anxious. God promises peace to those who trust Him. Peace comes flooding into our lives in an inexplicable way and gives us freedom to live a life of love.
John 16:33 I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.
The Lord promises to lead His people. He uses many means to do this. Here is an example. Paul believes he should be moving east, but something is stopping him. He concludes that it is the Holy Spirit at work. We don’t know how, but circumstances can be assumed.
Acts 16: 7-8 6 Next Paul and Silas traveled through the area of Phrygia and Galatia, because the Holy Spirit had prevented them from preaching the word in the province of Asia at that time.7 Then coming to the borders of Mysia, they headed north for the province of Bithynia,* but again the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them to go there.8 So instead, they went on through Mysia to the seaport of Troas.
GOD AT WORK IN LIFE