Understanding The Bible
TOPICAL BIBLE STUDIES
"Four Principles of the Balanced Christian Life"
FOUR PRINCIPLES OF
THE BALANCED CHRISTIAN
"... be transformed by the renewing of your mind..." Romans 12:2b
J. Deering, AncientPath.net
Often we are caught up in thinking that when we are discussing Spiritual things that we must be thinking about
how we deal with others. I want to put a stop to that, just for the moment of course, and get us thinking
about ourselves. It is just SO IMPORTANT that we know how to be good Christians.
I think I have found four PRINCIPLES and if we apply them to our lives
daily, we could live, in God's eyes, as very successful Christians, living daily as His Son taught us.
These four principles then are:
THE PRINCIPLE OF DEDICATION
THE PRINCIPLE OF DISCIPLINE
THE PRINCIPLE OF DEPENDENCE and
THE PRINCIPLE OF DEVELOPMENT
1. THE PRINCIPLE OF DEDICATION:
Before any progress can be made as a Christian, you must become a dedicated
person. Not a person with dedicated PLANS, but a dedicated PERSON. Giving control of you life to the
Lord is the basis for salvation, growth, and progress in the Christian life (Beware of any "formula"
which offers sudden and automatic lifting to a higher plane of salvation, dedication, or experience. Any
such general offer is quite misleading).
GOD CAN ONLY WORK WITH A YIELDED LIFE. Throughout the Scriptures God's call to dedication has always been
based on BLESSINGS ALREADY GRANTED. God's appeal to His children to dedicate their lives has always been
based on the fact that He has ALREADY richly blessed them. (Rom. 12:1, Rom. 3:24, Rom. 8:23, 1 Corinthians
THE NUMBER ONE BLESSING... Redemption (being bought back at a price).
Will I direct my life ... or will Christ? (Not the secondary issues: smoking, drinking, playing cards ...)
But WHO WILL BE THE MASTER OF MY YEARS? Dedication is not a matter of yielding TO something or yielding in SOME
area (for they are like weeds, you pull one out and another replaces it). Dedication is the matter of yielding
TO SOMEONE, The Lord Jesus Christ.
THE COMPONENTS OF DEDICATION: (Romans 12:1-2)
There must be an initial, decisive, and sometimes crisis presentation.
Therefore the surrender, or presentation of your body is a single, irrevocable, act of surrender (not a series
of surrenderings). This surrender is REASONABLE and RATIONAL in the eyes of God. We perform LIVING
SACRIFICE on ourselves. This presentation must be complete, presenting yourself complete with your good and
B. SEPARATION TO and SEPARATION FROM:
The dedicated life involves a SEPARATION TO GOD. You know that things
can be set aside for good uses and for bad. You must knowingly set aside your life TO HIM, and then go after
a life style that exemplifies Him. The dedicated life also involves a SEPARATION FROM THE WORLD or a non-conformity
to the evil age in which we live (Gal 1:4). For the Christian
is hypocrisy. God says the life has been made new, and
you and I live not only as though it hasn't been, but often AS IF THERE WERE NO GOD AT ALL! Don't be covered with
a worldly veneer. 1 Peter 1:14 says: NOT FASHIONING YOURSELVES ... AFTER THE WAYS OF THE WORLD, such
as: Ambitions Activities Goals Standards Every on of the above should be in CHRIST CENTEREDNESS.
The center of the Holy Spirit's activity is in the transformation of the
MIND (2 Corinthians 3:18). Romans 12:1-2 says, "I urge you therefore,, brethren, by the mercies of God,
to PRESENT YOUR BODIES A LIVING and HOLY SACRIFICE, ACCEPTABLE to God, which is your REASONABLE SERVICE of WORSHIP.
And do not be CONFORMED to this world, but be TRANSFORMED by the RENEWING of YOUR MIND, that you may PROVE what
the WILL of God IS, that which is GOOD and ACCEPTABLE and PERFECT." You don't need a clean life! You need
a clean MIND! Our minds, attitudes, thoughts, impulses, have been deceived by Sin and by the naturalness of our
bodies. The Mind needs transformation. (NOTE: Frequency: Technically the life has been surrendered
at the primary point of dedication (the crisis dedication). What's needed in the life when things are noticeably
going wrong, is RESTORATION not DEDICATION.)
2. THE PRINCIPLE OF DISCIPLINE: (ROM
"For, if you are living according to the flesh, you must die; but if
by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live." Those who have already become
IN-CHRIST, by personal reception of Him as Savior, who have "Crucified the Flesh" still need to DAILY
"PUT TO DEATH" the deeds of the BODY. We have a vital part in doing this! DISCIPLINE plus THE POWER
OF GOD enables me ... but, I still have to do it.
3. THE PRINCIPLE OF DEPENDENCE: (GAL
"But, I say, Walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire
of the flesh. For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these
are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please. ... Now the deeds
of the flesh are evident, ...but the fruit of the Spirit is LOVE, JOY, PEACE, PATIENCE, KINDNESS, GOODNESS, FAITHFULNESS,
GENTLENESS, SELF-CONTROL...." Constant dependence on the Power of the Indwelling Spirit of God. Walking
is an act comprised of successive single units of faith. One Step At A Time, trusting in the foot that is
4. THE PRINCIPLE OF DEVELOPMENT: (1
"And these things we write that your joy may be made complete.
This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you: That God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness
at all ... If we walk in the light AS He Himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another and
the blood of Jesus, His Son, cleanses us from all sin ... If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous
to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." GOD IS THE STANDARD . God says that
we come short of His standard (Rom. 3:23) "For ALL have come short of the Glory of God." The requirement
is NOT to be LIKE God! The requirement is TO WALK IN THE LIGHT. God's light is geared to the individual,
but the standard is fixed (God). 1 John chapter 1 teaches us that we need cleansing EVEN WHEN WE ARE IN FELLOWSHIP
with God and Each other. Constant cleansing is a consequence of walking in the light of Christ (Spotlight
The secret ... is really no secret at all. A Balanced believer
is one who is DEDICATED, DISCIPLINED, DEPENDENT UPON GOD ALONE,
AND IS CONSTANTLY DEVELOPING.