FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #1
LESSON LESSON TOPIC
1 Introduction
2 Fellowship
3 Encouragement
4 Accountability
5 Sin
...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #2
As a Christian we share a common call to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to disci...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #3
SCRIPTURAL AFFIRMATIONS
The following are affirmations that provide a Scriptural founda...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #4
Fellowship/Church Involvement: "Fellowship = the condition of being
together or sharing...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #5
Christians must rally to the side of a New Believer, almost constantly at first. The yo...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #6
Encouragement:"Encourage = to inspire hope, courage, confidence."
"Encourage one anothe...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #7
- QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION -
1. What are some ways we can encourage each other?
2. What...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #8
Accountability (to Christ//Church/Self/Others): "Accountable = answerable, being held
t...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #9
If the new believer desires to share this information with others, that is their busine...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #10
How do you know your gift? Sometimes, you will know it through trial and error. More
o...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #11
Fellowship - Encouragement - Accountability: Three basic
elements in the life of every...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #12
death" (Romans 5:21). "For the wages of sin is death" (Romans 6:23). "The soul that
si...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #13
Salvation: "Salvation = preservation or deliverance from evil or difficulty, the deliv...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #14
cost God so much. The Cross was the place where God and sinful man merged with a
treme...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #15
Atonement:"Atonement = amends or reparation made for an injury or wrong; in the
Hebrew...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #16
- QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION -
1. Without Atonement, what is man's position with God?
2....
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #17
Substitution: "Substitution = the act of substitution; the state of being substituted;...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #18
- QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION -
1. What was the purpose of Sacrifice in the Old Testament...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #19
Repentance:"Repent = to feel remorse, contrition, or self-reproach; to feel such regre...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #20
- QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION -
1. What is Repentance?
2. Why is Repentance essential to ...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #21
Faith:a confident belief in the truth, value or trustworthiness of a person, idea, or ...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #22
The Need of Faith in the Christian's Life:
(by Dr. Harold Linsell, "A Handbook of Chri...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #23
- QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION -
1. What is the moral of the story of the tightrope and th...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #24
Regeneration: "Regeneration = spiritual or moral revival or rebirth; to reform spiritu...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #25
The Holy Spirit of God, utilizing the Holy Word of God, exalts the Holy Son of God as ...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #26
- QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION -
1. Define Regeneration.
2. Why does man need Regeneration...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #27
Justification: "Justification = to declare free of blame; absolve; to free man of the ...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #28
(3) Freedom from Condemnation. "Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's elect?
I...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #29
- QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION -
1. What are the differences between Bridges of Character,...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #30
Assurance: "Assurance = the act of assuring or the state of being assured; a statement...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #31
(5) The witness of the Holy Spirit in the believer's heart. "And hope maketh not asham...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #32
- QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION -
1. What is the main purpose of Assurance?
2. Define Spiri...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #33
Sanctification: "Sanctification = to set apart for sacred use; consecrate; to make hol...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #34
(3) We should be holy in order that we may be made useful. Who have been the mightiest...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #35
- QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION -
1. Define Sanctification.
2. How does Sanctification rela...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #36
Bible Reading and Scripture Memory: "Scripture Memory = the mental
faculty of retainin...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #37
A very effective way of getting the Bible into your life is to begin memorizing key po...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #38
- QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION -
1. Why is Bible Reading a necessity for a Believer?
2. Wh...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #39
Prayer and Fasting: "Prayer = a reverent petition made to God; an act of
communication...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #40
Is the Son of God praying in me, bringing honor to the Father, or am I dictating my de...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #41
The disciples asked Jesus why they could not heal a demon possessed boy. Jesus said,
"...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #42
- QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION -
1. What does Prayer have to do with Spiritual Nourishment...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #43
Spiritual Gifts: "Spiritual Gifts = gifts given to every believer by the Holy Spirit. ...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #44
Ministry of Helping
1. Serving - the ability to give assistance or aid in any way that...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #45
Ministry of Directing Others
1. Leadership (Administration) - the ability to lead othe...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #46
- QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION -
1. Read Ephesians 2:10; 2 Corinthians 9:8-15; Matthew 5:1...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #47
Tithing: "Tithe = a tenth part of one's annual income, either in kind or money, contri...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #48
- QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION -
1. What should be Tithed?
2. Who really owns everything w...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #49
~~ END OF CLASS REVIEW ~~
You have now completed the "Foundational Bible Studies" Clas...
FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #50
Where do we go from here?
So now what?!? Where do you go from here? We sincerely belie...
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foundational bible studies

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foundational bible studies

  1. 1. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #1 LESSON LESSON TOPIC 1 Introduction 2 Fellowship 3 Encouragement 4 Accountability 5 Sin 6 Salvation 7 Atonement 8 Substitution 9 Repentance 10 Faith 11 Regeneration 12 Justification 13 Assurance 14 Sanctification 15 Scripture - Reading and Memorization 16 Prayer - Fasting 17 Spiritual Gifts 18 Spiritual Gifts Test & Review 19 Tithing 20 Topical Review - Challenge The Purpose is to teach major biblical doctrines that are needed for a complete understanding of our Christian Faith. All Believers need to know who we are in Christ, what God did for us to restore us to proper relationship with Him, and how we are to walk by faith.
  2. 2. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #2 As a Christian we share a common call to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to disciple others in their Christian walk. A common creed that we might agree to would be the "Great Commission Creed": THE GREAT COMMISSION CREED I Believe that, since the Fall of Adam and Eve into sin, all people are sinful from their conception and birth: that all people by nature stand under the wrath of God by virtue of their sin, and that, therefore, they are subject to eternal condemnation. (Psalm 51:5; Ephesians 2:3) I Believe that "God so loved the world" (John 3:16) and that God "Wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth” (1 Timothy 2:4). I Believe that God demonstrated His love and His desire for our salvation in sending "His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life" (John 3:16); that Jesus suffered and died on a cross to sacrifice Himself for our sins: that Jesus rose again from the dead, thereby conquering sin and death and Satan (1 Corinthians 15:3-4,55; Romans 5:17-21). I Believe that because I am God's child by faith in Jesus, I am also His witness (Acts 1:8); that when Jesus told the disciples, "Therefore go and make disciples of all nations" (Matthew 28:19) He was speaking also to me. I Believe that Jesus will come again to judge the living and the dead, to separate the sheep from the goats; that some "will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life" (Matthew 25:46). Therefore, I Also Believe in the importance of growth in prayer (Ephesians 6:18; Romans 12:12), work in the service of Christ's Church (1 Corinthians 6:20), and witness to my Savior, all directed to the purpose of fulfilling the Commission (Romans 15:15) Jesus has given to me and every Christian - to make disciples of all nations. Amen.
  3. 3. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #3 SCRIPTURAL AFFIRMATIONS The following are affirmations that provide a Scriptural foundation for the values outlined in this study. We Affirm the transforming power of the Gospel in a person's life through God's unconditional love and acceptance of us, his redeemed children.  The power of the gospel for daily life comes from hearts changed by Christ's loving presence dwelling in our hearts through faith.  A forgiving spirit, made possible by such changed hearts, will make a difference in a man's actions, attitudes, and relationships. We Affirm that sin fractures lives, reputations, and relationships.  Anxiety and shame are experienced as sin separates us from God, forcing us to live a "self-centered" life.  The acts of a sinful nature such as: selfishness, deceit, resentment, rebellion against authority, etc., damage our lives and the lives of our loved ones.  Trying harder cannot and will not eliminate sin and its effects. We Affirm that the love and forgiveness of Jesus Christ heals the lives of people damaged and broken by sin.  God sent Jesus to suffer and die to heal broken relationships - between God and us, and between us and other people.  People cannot be made to feel guilty enough to enable them to be good.  People are changed by accepting God's gift of love, not by trying to do better through their own efforts alone.  Doing God's will flows from being a redeemed child of God. We Affirm that by the power of the Holy Spirit, we receive through faith the forgiveness Jesus won for us on the cross and the resurrection power to change us into "New Creations" (2 Corinthians 5:17).  Faith in Christ frees us from the bondage of sin as the Holy Spirit works repentance in our hearts.  The old sinful self is destroyed daily as the Holy Spirit works repentance in our hearts.  The new self daily arises within, enabling us to become what we already are God's loved and loving children.  We are called to forgive others as God has first forgiven us - completely and unconditionally. We Affirm that the Gospel has power to enable us to live and embrace God's plan for our lives and the lives of our families.  We are determined to "speak the truth in a spirit of love", no matter what realities must be faced.  We will continue to "seek first the Kingdom" by striving for a Godly focus in all areas of our lives.
  4. 4. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #4 Fellowship/Church Involvement: "Fellowship = the condition of being together or sharing similar interests or experiences, as members of a profession, religion, or nationality; companionship; a union of friends or equals sharing similar interests; friendship; comradeship." Emile Durkheim, the pioneering sociologist, suggested that violence (crime) is a product of people's disconnections from others and from their moral community. Those who lack social bonds are more likely to commit violent acts. Because of adverse conditions, many people today find themselves alone - economically, emotionally, socially, and spiritually. Thus they all experience a sense of disconnectedness from society. Sociologists Roger Finke and Rodney Stark clarify this theory in the following statement: "The real basis of the moral order is human relationships. Most of us conform to laws and social norms most of the time because to do otherwise would risk our relationships with others. When we are alone, even the most respectable of us act in ways we would not were anyone present. People who have no relationships with family or close friends, or whose relationships are with persons far away, are essentially alone all the time. They do not risk their attachments if they are detected in deviant behavior, because they have none to lose." The simple truth is that man needs relationships to remain healthy and properly responsible. A man alone, especially an ex-offender or a person with a drug or alcohol problem, is a ticking time bomb. It is only a question of time until he self-destructs. This is a HUGE area of importance! "Research indicates that more than 80% of all ex-offenders never find a home church!" Some possible reasons for this might be:  That there really is no church within a prison - rather it is a "gathering of Christians" ... which is very different from what we would think of as a church in a local city or suburb;  It may be more appropriate to label inmate gatherings as a "Christian community" rather than a "church";  Christian ex-offenders may in some ways be stronger Christians than many people in our churches today. At any rate, the ex-offender who suffers for the sake of his faith (by taking a Christian stand while in prison) is in a very biblical situation;  Worship in a prison tends to be demonstrative and charismatic, joyous, spontaneous, unstructured, with contemporary music, personal testimonies about the faithfulness of God, and open to the presence and action of the Spirit;  Prison worship services tend to be more emotionally than intellectually based;  And, generally speaking, the preaching is simplistic, reserved for rejoicing and praising, and providing emotional support.
  5. 5. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #5 Christians must rally to the side of a New Believer, almost constantly at first. The young Christian's need for fellowship WILL BE MET - one way or another! Young Christians should be involved within the Church and its various programs as soon as possible - whatever it takes. Remember: The natural tendency for a loner - is to be alone. And it is within these times of loneliness that the danger lays. Until the New Believer learns to be comfortable in group activities and healthy relationships, he is in constant danger of relapsing back into old behaviors, relationships, and attitudes. Accountability is of utmost importance and every effort must be made to keep the young Christian in proper accountability relationships at all times. Be constantly on guard in this area. - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. Why is Fellowship with other Christian Believers a necessity? 2. What does the statement that a New Believer needs for Fellowship "WILL BE MET" mean? 3. What are some ways Christians can fellowship? Scripture Memory Verse: Matthew 6:33
  6. 6. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #6 Encouragement:"Encourage = to inspire hope, courage, confidence." "Encourage one another daily, as long as it is called today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin's deceitfulness" (Hebrews 3:13). Encouragement is closely associated with fellowship, or having spiritual "communion" with others. God has created us to be dependent both on Him and on one another. His judgment is that "it is not good for the man to be alone" (Genesis 2:18). None of us has the spiritual wherewithal to go it alone in the Christian life. Spiritual fellowship is not a luxury but a necessity, vital to our spiritual growth and health. One of the most important things we can share with one another is the spiritual truth that God has been teaching us, which might be of great help to fellow believers. Another advantage of fellowship is the mutual admonishing or encouraging each other during temptation or attacks of Satan. Hebrews 3:13 says, "encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin's deceitfulness." And in Hebrews 10:24- 25, "Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another - and all the more as you see the Day approaching." Note the emphasis on encouraging one another in the face of temptation, and spurring one another on toward love and good deeds. To be kept from temptation and to be stimulated when our zeal for Christian duty is flagging, we need both the public teaching of our pastors and the mutual encouragement and admonishing of one another. - Jerry Bridges Your knowledge of past failures, problems, strengths and weaknesses will permit you to plan a "menu" for healthy growth. The role of other Christians is to provide friendship and guidance in helping New Believers to choose opportunities for growth and maturity. In many ways other believers are coaches and the cheerleaders, who stand by giving both instruction in righteous living and compliments on the growth that is evidenced in the life of their Brothers and Sisters. One of the greatest joys in life is to have the encouragement of a true friend, who actively takes a personal interest and willing involvement in your life. Someone who loves you, cares about you, and wants you to reach the potential that he sees in you. Someone who believes in you and wants the best for you at all times. Someone who truly cares for you and about you. A simple yet most effective way to do this is for another to express appreciation for the character they see in them. This is called affirming, and a dose of honest affirmation can transform a person! A simple, well-placed comment of affirmation, perhaps combined with a suggestion, can also have profound effects. The point is not to manipulate people or make them feel guilty, but to give folks an idea of how their gifts might be put to practical use for the benefit of all. We have been given the task to build each other up in Him, confirming the spiritual gifts we see, and thanking our brothers for their good work. People tend to live up to our expectations of them. When we speak positively about them, their own view of themselves is affected. They change and grow under our influence. - A. LePeau
  7. 7. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #7 - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. What are some ways we can encourage each other? 2. What is Affirming? 3. How can we do this right now?
  8. 8. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #8 Accountability (to Christ//Church/Self/Others): "Accountable = answerable, being held to account; to make or render a reckoning, explanation for one's actions, deeds, thoughts." "As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another." (Proverbs 27:17) "Two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor. For if either of them falls, the one will lift up his companion. But woe to the one who falls when there is not another to lift him up." (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10, NASB) The macho man - a loner, fiercely independent, tough, strong, handsome, accountable to no one, totally self-sufficient - BALONEY! Nothing could be further from the truth. Centuries of human history show that life demands accountability. Few people naturally do what is best for others. The perverse nature of man tends to sloth, not diligence. We need to make ourselves accountable to another person or a group. Accountability is foundational to the New Testament concept of fellowship. Biblical fellowship cannot exist without "stimulating one another to love and good deeds," and "seeing that no one comes short of the grace of God" (Heb 10:24-25; 12:15). "Those who continue in sin, rebuke in the presence of all," and "bear one another's burdens" (1 Tim 5:20; Gal 6:2). We need accountability in our personal life: in the areas of quiet time, prayer, Scripture memory, Bible study, a sin or habit we are trying to conquer, exercise, witnessing, or any other areas of personal need God brings to mind. Accountability needs to be to a person, or to a small group of people. Such accountability can be very effective for everyone involved. Two are better than one. One person does sharpen the life of another. If your commitments are sincere, why not make them real by adding accountability to the commitment as insurance? Accountability puts teeth into commitment. And it forces you to open up an area of your life to scrutiny by another. You take a risk of revealing the inner life, and it puts pressure on us to follow through - but the rewards fully outweigh the risks. Consider the great sense of accomplishment you will receive as spiritual commitments become a reality in your life. - Jerry White Men need to be held accountable in every area of their lives - to God, to others, and to themselves. The role of the Church, and Christian Brothers and Sisters, is to provide input and correction, in love, to the lives of all believers. New believers are in special need of accountability due to habits of independence and rebellion that have been formed over years of incorrect behavior. Although they are "New Creations" in Christ, they still need to be responsible in all their actions. Since many of them are new to the Christian experience they need guidance and direction from more mature believers. All Christians should be willing to accept input and correction from other believers. An unwillingness to receive this from others shows a lack of maturity and could well indicate hidden problems and sins not having been dealt with. The shepherds of the congregation that the new Believer will attend need to know the background of their flock. Spiritual leaders must guard and protect the new believer from abuse of this information. If church members desire to know, they should be referred to the church leadership.
  9. 9. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #9 If the new believer desires to share this information with others, that is their business, but the church leadership must keep this information in confidence. Special awareness should be given to avoid creating situations that put the new believer in positions of danger to himself or others. There are REAL dangers that result in a lack of accountability! Christians need to help each other respond positively to spiritual accountability. Once we become comfortable and willing to accept accountability in our life, then we will begin to grow rapidly. Andy Stanley, in the section below, mentions accountability as part of Spiritual Growth. Accountability cannot be separated from our spiritual condition or our relationship with others. Strategy For Spiritual Growth Andy Stanley Beyond discipleship is the call to spiritual maturity, a lifelong process. The continually unfolding road to spiritual maturity is traversed through the exercise of essential disciplines, not for the purpose of acceptance by God - you are already as accepted by Him as you ever will be - but to grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ.  A REGULAR QUIET TIME: A basic ingredient for maturity is personal time alone with God. It means giving God your undivided attention for a predetermined amount of time for the purpose of talking to God and hearing from Him. A devotional life is a personal encounter with the person of Jesus Christ. It engages the heart, mind, and will in a journey of worship, prayer and obedience.  ACCOUNTABILITY: While we are ultimately accountable to God for our actions, spiritual maturity is accelerated when we make ourselves accountable to others. The principle of accountability pervades our work, our marriage, and our finances. Spiritual accountability is inviting an individual or a group to question you regarding one or more areas of your life, and committing yourself to total honesty with that person or group. Mutual accountability is a safety net for believers. Others can expose faulty behavior or prevent us from making unwise choices. It helps us move from the realm of theory into fact by encouraging us to put our faith into practice. (Read: Luke 17:3; Proverbs 27:6; 27:17) Accountability is always in your best interest.  PERSONAL EVANGELISM/WITNESSING: People without Christ are lost and face a Christ- less eternity. The Christian has the only answer to the problem of sin and all its darkness - faith in Jesus Christ. The believer has the privilege of bringing "good news" (the Gospel) of God's love and salvation. Evangelism must be a part of your lifestyle - all you need is a willingness to tell others what Christ has done for you. Few people reject an opportunity to hear how God has changed your life.  SPIRITUAL GIFTS: Knowing and using your spiritual gift is a vital part of maturing in the Christian life. Spiritual gifts are special abilities given by the Holy Spirit to believers that enable us to serve one another effectively and administer God's grace (I Peter 4:10). God has a unique place for all of us in His church and has equipped us with special gifts to help others and to receive His help as each uses their spiritual gifts within the Body of Christ (See I Corinthians 12 and Romans 12). When you use your spiritual gifts, you learn just how important you are in the kingdom of God and how you fit into His scheme of encouragement and edification. You have a role, a function that no one else can duplicate. God wants to use you in a special way.
  10. 10. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #10 How do you know your gift? Sometimes, you will know it through trial and error. More often, others will let you know how you bless them - and this is frequently a good indicator of your gift. Don't be afraid. God will confirm your giftedness and use you effectively if your desire is to glorify Him and serve others. When you are growing spiritually by cultivating a regular quiet time, developing personal accountability with other believers, sharing your faith enthusiastically, and using your spiritual gifts, your influence for God's Kingdom can be extraordinary. - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. What is Spiritual Accountability? 2. Why is Accountability important to a Believer? 3. Why is Accountability part of Spiritual Growth? 4. Who should we be accountable to?
  11. 11. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #11 Fellowship - Encouragement - Accountability: Three basic elements in the life of every Believer and fundamental to the growth and development of a strong Christian Walk. Sin: "Sin = a transgression of a religious or moral law, when deliberate. A condition of estrangement from God as a result of breaking God's law. An offence, violation, fault, or error; failure to conform to the law of God either negatively or positively, by omission or commission." Sin is anything that is against the known will of God, and will always separate us from proper relationship with Him. God is Holy and requires holiness from His people. A proper under- standing of what sin is from God's perspective, and how it keeps us from fulfilling the will of God in our lives, is a necessity for every believer. "The Greek word for sin is "Hamartia", which means missing the mark; the Hebrew term means to deviate from the way; always in a moral sense - a sin, whether by omission or commission, in thought, word or deed. Christ came to teach men how to shoot straight - to hit the moral bull's eye every time." - Dr. Harold Linsell, "A Handbook of Christian Truth" "SIN - a three letter word that spells the difference between happiness and misery, freedom and bondage, Heaven and Hell. Men may deny its existence, minimize its influence, or try to evade its consequences, but it remains a cold, stubborn, hideous reality, separating the soul from God Almighty." The Fact of Sin is proved in three ways: (1) First, history bears eloquent testimony to its existence and influence. As long as man has been on earth wars, tumults, disease, and death have been rampant. All creation bares unmistakably the marks of evil. (2) Second, the conscience of man bears witness to his own sinful nature. No man, however good he may appear to be, can rightfully claim to be free from envy, pride, lust, greed, malice, or hate. An honest man who calls things by their right names will not hesitate to admit his own sinful nature and acts. (3) Third, the Scriptures bear repeated testimony to sin's reality. From beginning to end the Word of God realistically faces the problem and solves it. The Consequences of Sin: (1) Degradation. All the faculties of man's soul and body are morally perverted. His nature is corrupted, his desires polluted, his spiritual sight blinded, his will directed away from God (See Romans 1:29-32). (2) Condemnation. A breach of the law brings guilt. Every sin ever committed merits condemnation and demands that a penalty be meted out. This is the irrevocable law of God (See Romans 3:19). (3) Separation from God, which is death. The Lord is altogether Holy. He cannot have communion with unholy creatures. For "can two walk together, except they be agreed?" (Amos 3:3). To be separated from God spells death. By nature man is "dead in trespasses and sins" (Ephesians 2:1). "Sin hath reigned unto
  12. 12. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #12 death" (Romans 5:21). "For the wages of sin is death" (Romans 6:23). "The soul that sinneth, it shall die" (Ezekiel 18:4). And even the physical death which men experience, the separation of the spirit from the body, is the result of sin. Unless something is done to rescue man from the consequences of his sin, he is lost, without hope. His separation from God will be eternal; his degradation will be complete; he will spend eternity in hell, "where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched" (Mark 9:44). But man is unable to remedy the situation. He is incapable of redeeming himself from sin, of extricating himself from his predicament, of saving himself from destruction. Unless God intervenes he is doomed forever. If man is to be saved from sin, the only way in which he can be saved is through Jesus Christ. Thank God for the Son of God who is able to "save to the uttermost" (Hebrews 7:25) the foulest wretch and make him a child of God. (Additional Bible references: Romans 3:19-20; Psalm 51; John 8:34&36; Romans 3:9-18,23; Romans 5:6-21; Romans 6:1-23; Romans 7:7-8:2; 2 Corinthians 5:21; Titus 2:11-14; I John 2:1-2; 3:9; 5:1-4,18; James 1:12-16; James 4:17; 1 John 1:5-2:1; 3:6-9) - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. What is sin? 2. What are three facts that prove sin? 3. What are the three consequences of sin? 4. Why is man unable to redeem himself? 5. What is the only way man can be saved? Next Memory Verse: Romans 6:23
  13. 13. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #13 Salvation: "Salvation = preservation or deliverance from evil or difficulty, the deliverance of man from the power of sin; redemption; the realization and demonstration of Life, Truth, and Love as supreme over all, carrying with it the destruction of the illusions of sin, sickness, and death." The Doctrine of Salvation includes several doctrinal concepts that are important for each believer to understand. To KNOW you are saved, and to understand exactly what God did for you through Christ Jesus, is absolutely essential for spiritual maturity. There are several doctrines of “Soteriology” (the theological doctrine of salvation as affected by Christ - Webster's Dictionary). The saving work of Christ altered man's state, his standing before God, and his entire spiritual outlook. Each doctrine has its particular approach and emphasis, yet a crimson cord runs throughout - the blood of Christ, out-poured on Calvary, is man's only plea. Whether the theme is atonement, substitution, repentance, faith, regeneration, justification, or assurance, one cannot escape the fact that the cross of Christ is man's refuge from the storm of impending wrath, the basis of his change of condition from death to life, the ground of his eternal confidence and the certainty of his entrance into heaven. No wonder the apostle proclaimed: "For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified" (1 Corinthians 2:2). Closely allied with Calvary is the empty tomb. Crucifixion was followed by resurrection. The Father placed His seal forever upon the perfect work of the Son. The work of reconciliation which Christ came to accomplish is completed: He arose from the dead. Contemplation of His utterly selfless achievement for a race at enmity (Deep seated mutual hatred; hostility; animosity. - Webster's Dictionary) with God should drive us once more to our knees in grateful adoration and homage: "Thou are worthy ... for thou was slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue and people, and nation" (Revelation 5:9). The Cross of Christ is the revealed truth of God's judgment on sin. Never associate the idea of martyrdom with the Cross of Christ. It was the supreme triumph, and it shook the very foundations of hell. There is nothing in time or eternity more absolutely certain and irrefutable than what Jesus Christ accomplished on the Cross - He made it possible for the entire human race to be brought back into a right-standing relationship with God. He made redemption the foundation of human life; that is, He made a way for every person to have fellowship with God. The Cross was not something that happened to Jesus - He came to die; the Cross was His purpose in coming. He is "the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world" (Revelation 13:8). The incarnation of Christ would have no meaning without the Cross. Beware of separating "God was manifested in the flesh..." from "He made Him ... to be sin for us ..." (I Timothy 3:16; 2 Corinthians 5:21). The purpose of the incarnation was redemption. God came in the flesh to take sin away, not to accomplish something for himself. The Cross is the central event in time and eternity, and the answer to all the problems of both. The Cross is not the cross of a man, but the Cross of God, and it can never be fully comprehended through human experience. The Cross is God exhibiting His nature. It is the gate through which any and every individual can enter into oneness with God. But it is not a gate we pass right through; it is one where we abide in the life that is found there. The heart of salvation is the Cross of Christ. The reason salvation is so easy to obtain is that it
  14. 14. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #14 cost God so much. The Cross was the place where God and sinful man merged with a tremendous collision and where the way to life was opened. But all the cost and pain of the collision was absorbed by the heart of God. Salvation from sin comes through: 1. Confession (Romans 10:9; 1 John 1:9) 5. Godly sorrow (2 Corinthians 7:10) 2. Grace through Faith (Ephesians 2:8-9) 6. Faith in His Blood (Romans 3:25) 3. Sanctification of the Spirit, and 7. Faith in His Name (Acts 4:12) 4. Belief of the Truth (2 Thessalonians 2:13) "Our job as a worker for God is to open people's eyes so that they may turn themselves from darkness to light. But that is not salvation; it is conversion - only the effort of an awakened human being. I do not think it is too broad a statement to say the majority of so-called Christians are like that. Their eyes are opened, but they have received nothing. Conversion is not regeneration. This is a neglected fact in our preaching today. People may make vows and promises, and may be determined to follow through, but none of this is salvation. Salvation means that we are brought to the place where we are able to receive something from God on the authority of Jesus Christ, namely, forgiveness of sins." - Finis Dake, Date's Annotated Bible (Additional Bible references: Acts 4:12; 16:30; Romans 1:16-17; Romans 10:9-10,13; Ephesians 6:10-18; Philippians 2:12; Hebrews 2:1-4; 1 Peter 1:3-9) - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. Why is it of utmost importance to know what God did for us through Jesus Christ, regarding our Salvation? 2. What did Jesus accomplish on the Cross? 3. Why did Jesus come to earth? 4. What 7 things are necessary for us to be saved? 5. What is the difference between conversion and salvation? Next Scripture Memory Verse: 1 John 1:9
  15. 15. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #15 Atonement:"Atonement = amends or reparation made for an injury or wrong; in the Hebrew Scriptures man's reconciliation with God after having transgressed the covenant; the redemptive life and death of Christ; the reconciliation of God and man thus brought about by Christ; reconciliation; concord." "AT-ONE-MENT" Atonement for sin is at the heart of the gospel. This teaching, however, has often been misunderstood or misinterpreted. This is tragic, for apart from the atonement our Savior wrought upon the cross; man is hopelessly lost in sin and doomed to eternal separation from God. Three Principles Underlie the Atonement. These are closely related to, and associated with, the fact of sin. (1) The principle of "Covering." The blood of Jesus Christ, out-poured upon the cross, covers the believer's sins. Apart from the Savior's shed blood one's sins stand naked, open, exposed to the displeasure, judgment and wrath of God. But the blood serves as a covering. To be "under the blood," or "beneath the cross of Jesus," is to be in a place of complete security. (2) The principle of "Reconciliation" through expiation (payment of the penalty). In Romans 5:11 we read the words: "Our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement." The literal meaning of the word used here is "reconciliation." The sinner was estranged (separated) from his Creator. The visitation of judgment upon God's dearly beloved Son and the satisfaction rendered to divine justice solved the problem. This restored the broken divine/human relationship, bringing about perfect reconciliation. (3) The principle of "Substitution." Christ died, not as a martyr for some "cause," nor as a religious enthusiast, nor merely as a prophet who sealed his testimony with his blood, but as the sinners' substitute. He died "for our sins." He died in our place. Someone had to die the death we deserved. In loving compassion He experienced the lethal stroke. "But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed" (Isaiah 53:5). When our blessed Lord cried out on the cross, "It is finished," He was not simply declaring that His human life was ended. Rather the final sacrifice now had been made. Ultimate expiation for sin now became a fact in history. At Calvary the Creator stooped in infinite mercy to the needs of a sinful race (see Ephesians 2:4-7). Hear the Word of salvation; open your heart to the Lord Jesus; acknowledge Him as the Son of God whose blood atoned for your sin, and accept Him as your Savior. Once receives the benefits of Christ's atonement through faith (Read John 1:12; 3:16; 5:24; 14:6; Ephesians 2:8).
  16. 16. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #16 - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. Without Atonement, what is man's position with God? 2. How does Atonement relate to Reconciliation? 3. How does Atonement relate to a "Final Sacrifice?" 4. How do we receive the benefits of Christ's atonement? Next Scripture Memory Verse: John 3:16-17
  17. 17. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #17 Substitution: "Substitution = the act of substitution; the state of being substituted; one that takes the place of another; replacement." The sacrificial system of the Old Testament was designed around the concept of substitution. Man is sinful - God is Holy. A holy God demanded the penalty for sin must be paid, and the only acceptable price for the sin penalty was blood and death. In the Old Testament the priests sacrificed the lives of animals so that the sins of man could be "covered by the blood." In the New Testament, Jesus Christ became the ultimate sacrifice for the sin of the world, paying with his own blood and life the complete price of all the sin of the world - past, present and future. The sacrificial system is now completely done away with due to this final and complete sacrifice. Only through the precious blood of Jesus Christ, and by accepting his substitution as our payment for the sin penalty, we can be restored to proper relationship with God. "He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him" (2 Corinthians 5:21). The modern view of the death of Jesus is that He died for our sins out of sympathy for us. Yet the New Testament view is that He took our sin on Himself not because of sympathy, but because of His identification with us. He was "made ... to be sin ...” Our sins are removed because of the death of Jesus, and the only explanation for His death is His obedience to His Father, not His sympathy for us. We are acceptable to God not because we have promised to give up things, but because of the death of Christ, and for no other reason. That Christ died for me, and therefore I am completely free from penalty, is NEVER taught in the New Testament. What is taught in the New Testament is that "He died for all" (2 Corinthians 5:15) - not, "He died my death" - and that through identification with His death I can be freed from sin, and have His very righteousness imparted as a gift to me. The substitution which is taught in the New Testament is twofold - "For He made Him who knew no sin to: (1) be sin for us, (2) that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." The teaching is not Christ for me unless I am determined to have Christ formed in me. (See Galatians 4:19)
  18. 18. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #18 - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. What was the purpose of Sacrifice in the Old Testament? 2. What is the "Ultimate Sacrifice," and how does it relate to Substitution? 3. What is the only reason we can now be acceptable to God? 4. For what purpose did Christ die? 5. What does Christ "IN" me mean? Next Scripture Memory Verse: 2 Corinthians 5:21
  19. 19. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #19 Repentance:"Repent = to feel remorse, contrition, or self-reproach; to feel such regret for past conduct as to change one's mind regarding it; to make a change for the better as a result of remorse or contrition for one's sins." "Repentance = the act or the process of repenting." Repentance is essential to salvation. The Bible teaches that no man can be saved, regenerated, and justified without repentance. Repentance does not earn salvation or forgiveness, but it does put a man in a position in which God, on the ground of the work and merits of the Lord Jesus Christ, is free to pardon his sins and make him a son of God. What Repentance involves: (1) Repentance involves a change of mind and implies an alteration of course. What one has been doing he decides to do no more. This means a change of directions and of conduct; to repent - change your mind - and to act on that new decision (Matthew 21:28,29; Luke 15:17). (2) Repentance involves a deep Godly sorrow for sin. When a man sees himself as he truly is, contrition and humiliation ensue. The Bible declares that true conviction of sin is accompanied by sharp remorse and heart sorrow (Psalm 38:18; Luke 18:9-14; 10:13). (3) Repentance involves confession of sin to Almighty God, and sometimes to men if the circumstances require it. Any Christian has the authority to declare to a repentant sinner that his sins are forgiven for Jesus' sake (Luke 15:18; 18:13). (4) Repentance involves forsaking one's sin. The repentant sinner hearkens to the command of Jesus: "Go, and sin no more" (John 8:11; Proverbs 28:13; 1 Samuel 7:3; Isaiah 55:7). (5) Repentance involves the turning of a sinner to God, since God alone can offer pardon and peace (Acts 26:18; 1 Thessalonians 1:9). The Results of Repentance: (1) Pardon and forgiveness (Isaiah 55:7; Acts 3:19). (2) The Holy Spirit is given to those who truly repent (Acts 2:38). "All the world is faced with the need to repent. Statesmen, scientists, clergymen, economists, and sociologists predict that the future outlook is gloomy for man. Amid decaying cultures, declining standards of morality, and increasing lawlessness practically all men agree that hope for the future rests on a resurgence of spiritual values. The clarion call of the hour is to repentance." - Dr. Harold Linsell, "A Handbook of Christian Truth"
  20. 20. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #20 - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. What is Repentance? 2. Why is Repentance essential to Salvation? 3. What happens if a man is "Converted" but does not "Repent" of sin? 4. How do you know if you have truly Repented of sin? Spend this week going back over all previous Scripture Memory Verses
  21. 21. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #21 Faith:a confident belief in the truth, value or trustworthiness of a person, idea, or thing; belief that does not rest on logical proof or material evidence; loyalty to a person or thing, allegiance; belief and trust in God; religious conviction; a system of religious beliefs; a set of principles or beliefs." There is a great story told about a man who is walking a tightrope across Niagara Falls. He asks the people watching, "Who believes that I can walk across this tightrope?'', and the people responded, "We believe! We believe!" Then he asks the crowd, "Who believes that I can wheel a wheelbarrow across this tightrope?", and again the people respond, "We believe! We believe!" Next he asks, "Who believes that I could put a person inside the wheelbarrow and wheel him across this tightrope?" Again the people respond, "We believe! We believe! Finally the man asks the crowd, "Who will be first to get inside the wheelbarrow?", and the crowd becomes completely silent. Faith is getting inside God's wheelbarrow. No longer making any effort to control your own life or destiny, but completely trusting God to guide and care for you in every area of your life. The Bible negates all man's effort to "earn" or "merit" salvation and announces but one way to God. Jesus Christ is the door; the key that unlocks the door is faith. Works, character and thoughts are important; but only one key fits the door - the key of faith. In the final analysis, what we believe about Jesus (whether we believe and put our trust in Him) determines our everlasting destiny. Martin Luther spoke to the hearts of men when he said that faith alone (sola fide) saves. Man is saved by faith plus nothing else. However, lest we overemphasize salvation by faith alone, let us remember that the Bible teaches that saving faith is never alone - it never operates in a vacuum, but is always accompanied by a transformed life. One is saved by faith alone. But true faith is always accompanied by good works. - Dr. Harold Linsell, "A Handbook of Christian Truth" Faith is the entire person in "Right Relationship" with God through the power of the Spirit of Jesus Christ. God wants you to understand that it is a life of faith, not a life of emotional enjoyment of His blessings. Faith is a tremendously active principle that always puts Jesus Christ first. God brings us into particular circumstances to educate our faith, because the nature of faith is to make the object of our faith very real to us. Until we know Jesus, God is merely a concept, and we can't have faith in Him. Faith by its very nature must be tested and tried. And the real trial of faith is not that we find it difficult to trust God, but that God's character must be proven as trustworthy in our own minds. Faith, as the Bible teaches it, is faith in God coming against everything that contradicts Him - a faith that says, "I will remain true to God's character whatever He may do." The highest and the greatest expression of faith in the whole Bible is - "Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him" (Job 13:15). - Oswald Chambers
  22. 22. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #22 The Need of Faith in the Christian's Life: (by Dr. Harold Linsell, "A Handbook of Christian Truth") No area of the Christian life is divorced from faith. Faith is the source and the secret of success in Christian living. The Bible teaches us that it is significant for several reasons: 1. We live by faith. "... the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God ..." (Galatians 2:20). 2. We are kept and we stand by faith. "Who are kept by the power of God through faith ..." (1 Peter 1:5). "... Because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith" (Romans 11:20; 2 Corinthians 1:24b). 3. We resist the devil and overcome him by faith. "... because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: whom resist steadfast in the faith ..." (1 Peter 5:8,9). "Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked" (Ephesians 6:16). 4. We walk by faith. "For we walk by faith, not by sight" (2 Corinthians 5:7). To believe is to commit. In the area of intellectual learning I commit myself mentally, and reject anything not related to that belief. In the realm of personal belief I commit myself morally to my convictions and refuse to compromise. But in intimate personal belief I commit myself spiritually to Jesus Christ and make a determination to be dominated by Him alone. Then when I stand face-to-face with Jesus Christ and He says to me, "Do you believe this?" I find that faith is as natural as breathing. And I am staggered when I think how foolish I have been in not trusting Him earlier. - Oswald Chambers
  23. 23. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #23 - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. What is the moral of the story of the tightrope and the wheelbarrow? 2. What does the statement "by Faith alone" mean? 3. What does a "transformed life" have to do with Faith? 4. When our Faith is tested, what really is being tested? 5. In what four (4) ways does faith work in the life of a believer? 6. What do the words "to believe is to commit" mean to you? 7. Read Romans 10:17. What does this verse mean? Next Scripture Memory Verse: Romans 10:17
  24. 24. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #24 Regeneration: "Regeneration = spiritual or moral revival or rebirth; to reform spiritually or morally; to undergo spiritual conversion or rebirth; reborn; reformed; revitalized; restored; refreshed; renewed." "The problem of death. By nature all mankind is dead in trespasses and sins (See Ephesians 2:1; 1 Corinthians 15:22). This problem is solved by the impartation, or implantation of divine life, known as regeneration, the spiritual birth from above. Every man, no matter how kind, attractive or personable he may be, is dead, utterly devoid of the life of God. He exists, but he has no spiritual life. When regenerated, however, he knows that he is a child of God, that he will live forever in the presence of God, and that even while he remains on earth abundant life is his priceless possession. The Necessity of Regeneration: All mankind since the Fall is by nature "born into the wrong family" and must be "born again" to enter the family of God. There is a widespread teaching today that everyone is a child of God. This is not true. God is the Creator of all men, and to that extent He may conceivable be called their "Father", but only through regeneration does one become an heir of God. Mankind has been divided into two groups: those who have been born into the family of God; and those still out of God's family. The Nature of Regeneration: Regeneration is the impartation (to make known, to impart a secret, to give, to bestow) of divine life to the believer's soul. A supernatural intervention, it marks the commencement of one's eternal life. A baby must be born before it can walk and talk. So a man must have the light of God in his heart before he can walk worthily and testify effectively for his Lord. Jesus compares the new birth with a natural birth of a baby. In natural birth the parents, not the baby are the responsible agents. In regeneration God, not the sinner, takes the initiative and "Of his own will begat he us" (James 1:18). At birth a child enters a new sphere of existence. In like manner the one who is "reborn" enters a new realm of life. What he previously loved he now hates; the sins he relished he now finds distasteful. He has a new set of values, a fresh hope and confidence, and an altered horizon (See 2 Corinthians 5:17). He now bears the name of his Savior: he is a Christian. The Basis of Regeneration: If one is to be born again from above, he must give assent to the message of the Gospel. This message describes the perfect work of Christ on the sinner’s behalf. The doctrines of atonement and regeneration must never be divorced. The blood of the Lamb of God, shed for the remission of sins, is the basis of the birth from above. Personal faith in Christ as Redeemer is the condition of regeneration. "But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name ..." (John 1:12,13). Receive Christ, believe in him, and be born again. The Process of Regeneration: How does the regeneration actually take place in the soul? Jesus taught Nicodemus that two agencies are involved in regeneration: water and the Spirit (John 3:5). The Spirit is the third Person of the Trinity, who works in regenerating power upon the human heart, imparts life in place of spiritual death, and turns men from sin to God (Titus 3:5). The "water" does not refer to baptism, but relates to the total cleansing, regenerative process. Some passages of Scripture seem to indicate that it may be the Word of God (James 1:18; 1 Peter 1:23; John 15:3; Ephesians 5:26).
  25. 25. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #25 The Holy Spirit of God, utilizing the Holy Word of God, exalts the Holy Son of God as Savior. Then the Spirit woos, convicts and converts the sinner, regenerating him and causing him, through saving faith in Christ, to enter into the family of God. The Results of Regeneration: (1) The new birth makes one a child of God. All the resources of his heavenly Father are now and forever available to him (John 1:12; Galatians 3:26; Romans 8:16,17). (2) The new birth makes one a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17; Galatians 6:15; Ephesians 2:10), and gives one a new heart (Ezekiel 36:26). (3) The new birth causes believers to become "partakers of the divine nature" (2 Peter 1:4). They are "new men" in Christ (Ephesians 4:24; Col. 3:10). (4) The new birth paves the way for victory over the world. (1 John 3:9; 5:4,18). - Dr. Harold Linsell, "A Handbook of Christian Truth" How can a man be born again? Only when he is willing to die to everything in his life, including his rights, his virtues, and his religion, and becomes willing to receive into himself a new life that he has never before experienced (John 3:1-21). This new life exhibits itself in our conscious repentance and through our unconscious holiness. To be born of God means that I have His supernatural power to stop sinning. The Bible never asks, "Should a Christian sin?" The Bible emphatically states that a Christian must not sin. The work of the new birth is being effective in us when we do not commit sin. It is not merely that we have the power not to sin, but that we have actually stopped sinning. If we obey the life of God in us, we do not have to sin. - Oswald Chambers (Additional Bible references: Matthew 19:27-30; Titus 3:1-7; John 3:1-21; 1 Peter 1:22-23; John 1:12-13)
  26. 26. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #26 - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. Define Regeneration. 2. Why does man need Regeneration? 3. When we are Regenerated, what changes "IN" us? 4. What is the basis of power that allows Regeneration in man? 5. How does Regeneration take place in a Believer's soul? 6. In your own words, tell the four (4) results of Regeneration? 7. What must we do to be Regenerated? 8. What is the Regenerated Believer's Relationship to sin? Next Scripture Memory Verse: Galatians 2:20
  27. 27. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #27 Justification: "Justification = to declare free of blame; absolve; to free man of the guilt and penalty attached to grievous sin." "Just-As-If-I'd Never Sinned!" "If when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life" (Romans 5:10). The problem of guilt: By nature and in conduct all mankind is sinful; man has broken the law of God and stands condemned before his Creator (Romans 3:10). Justification by faith apart from the deeds of the law is the solution to this problem. Justification is the divine answer to the problem of spiritual guilt. The human predicament is that God is holy; man is sinful. A holy God will have no fellowship with one whose soul is stained with sin. Between the righteous Creator and the guilty sinner a great gulf is fixed (Isaiah 59:2). Man seeks to construct a bridge of character - surely, he reasons, if his character is fine and strong, he will be admitted to the presence of God. Or man tries to span the void created by sin with the bridge of conduct -he hopes that he may be saved by his deeds of goodness or mercy or love. But such bridges are far too short to reach the gates of heaven. Where every human bridge fails - God steps in and provides the bridge of justification by faith alone. All man-made devices to reach God are futile, inadequate, and impotent. Justification by faith is the one indispensable way of restoring the guilty sinner to the heart of God. The Nature of Justification by Faith: Justification is a legal act, originating in the loving will of God, on the basis of which the believer is pardoned and declared righteous in God's sight. The act relates to the sending of Christ Jesus, the Son of God, into the world to bear the sinner's guilt and death and to bring him back to God. Only God Himself can be the architect of this bridge. The foundation is Calvary. God justifies the sinner, accepts him as "just" or righteous, only on the ground of Christ's atoning work upon the cross. Only by faith in Christ as Savior we are Justified (Romans 3:28; Galatians 2:16). (Note the emphasis upon His shed blood: Romans 3:25.) Justification and Works: Justification by faith alone apart from the deeds of the law is the heart of the gospel. Faith that saves goes beyond the head to the heart and will. It produces results which glorify God. Works are the certain guarantee that faith is genuine; they are the inevitable fruit of true faith. When James writes that "by works a man is justified", he means that unless there are works the "faith" is dead. It is not the genuine article after all. James does not substitute works for faith; he insists that works must be present as a demonstration of the reality of faith (James 2:21,24; Romans 4:3,9-11). The Results of Justification by Faith: (1) Assurance of Salvation. The effect of righteousness is "quietness and assurance forever" (Isaiah 32:17). (2) Peace with God. "Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ" (Romans 5:1). All enmity between creature and Creator is gone.
  28. 28. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #28 (3) Freedom from Condemnation. "Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth?" (Romans 8:33-34). (4) Sonship. "That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life" (Titus 3:7). (5) Blessings. Romans 5:1-11 is a gold mine of truth. It reveals some of the marvelous blessings which result from justification. Never cease to thank God for His wonderful mercies to the children of His love. (6) Assurance of Glorification. "And whom he justified, them he also glorified" (Romans 8:30). Our hope of glory - our certainty of Heaven, depends upon our justification by faith alone. - Dr. Harold Linsell, "A Handbook of Christian Truth" I am not saved (justified) by believing - I simply realize I am saved by believing. And it is not repentance that saves me - repentance is only the sign that I realize what God has done through Christ Jesus. The danger here is putting the emphasis on the effect, instead of on the cause. Is it my obedience, consecration, and dedication that make me right with God? It is never that! I am made right with God because, prior to all of that, Christ died. When I turn to God and by belief accept what God reveals, the miraculous atonement by the Cross of Christ instantly places me into a right relationship with God. And as a result of the supernatural miracle of God's grace I stand justified, not because I am sorry for my sin, or because I have repented, but because of what Jesus has done. The Spirit of God brings justification with a shattering, radiant light, and I know that I am saved, even though I don't know how it was accomplished. The salvation that comes from God is not based on human logic, but on the sacrificial death of Jesus. We can be born again solely because of the atonement of our Lord. Sinful men and women can be changed into new creations, not through their repentance or their belief, but through the wonderful work of God in Christ Jesus which preceded all of our experience (See 2 Corinthians 5:17-19). The unconquerable safety of justification and sanctification is God Himself. We do not have to accomplish these things ourselves - they have been accomplished through the atonement of the Cross of Christ. The supernatural becomes natural to us through the miracle of God, and there is the realization of what Jesus Christ has already done - "It is finished!" (John 19:30). - 0swald Chambers Justification of Believers is by: 1. God (Romans 3:26) 5. Grace (Romans 3:24; Titus 3:7) 2. Christ's Resurrection (Romans 4:25) 6. Faith (Acts 13:39; Romans 5:1) 3. Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:11) 7. Prayer (Luke 18:14) 4. Blood (Romans 3:24-28) 8. Obedience (Romans 5:18) 8 Results of Justification by Faith: 1. Peace with God (Romans 5:1) 5. Joy in tribulations (Romans 5:3-5) 2. Access by Faith into Grace (Romans 5:2) 6. Love of God in the heart (Romans 5:5-8) 3. Standing in Grace (Romans 5:2) 7. Holy Ghost is given to us (Romans 5:5; 8:9) 4. Joy and Hope (Romans 5:2) 8. Saved from wrath (Romans 5:9-10) (Additional Bible references: Romans 5:1,9; Romans 8:28-39; Galatians 2:16-20)
  29. 29. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #29 - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. What are the differences between Bridges of Character, Bridges of Conduct, and the Bridge of Justification by Faith alone? 2. What is the only means by which man can be Justified? 3. Why does Faith play such an important role in Justification? 4. What are the six (6) results of Justification by Faith? 5. What does my obedience, consecration and dedication have to do with Justification? 6. What are the eight (8) parts of Justification? 7. What are the eight (8) results of Justification? Next Scripture Memory Verse: Romans 5:8
  30. 30. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #30 Assurance: "Assurance = the act of assuring or the state of being assured; a statement or indication that inspires confidence; guarantee; freedom from doubt; confident, with a view to removing doubt; to make certain; ensure; to set the mind at rest." Christians may be certain of their salvation! The Word of God supplies men with evidence of their redemption. God has not only redeemed His people; He has also provided for them a profound assurance which they may entertain. "These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life ..." (1 John 5:13). The Meaning of Assurance (Dr. Harold Linsell, "A Handbook of Christian Truth") Assurance is the intellectual and spiritual certainty that one belongs to God; that he possesses salvation. The believer knows he is saved so that doubt is excluded and he is able to walk with confidence. The agony which accompanies doubt and the fears which uncertainty breeds vanish before assurance. The triumphant testimony of Paul bespeaks his personal certainty: "For I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day" (2 Timothy 1:12). The Grounds of Assurance The grounds on which assurance rests are not so much internal as external; not so much subjective as objective. In an age when men are prone to depend upon feelings, emotions, intuition and intangibles, God speaks in objective fashion and points out to men the anchor of assurance to which their souls may be fastened - an anchor which will hold amid the storms and uncertainties of life. Among the grounds for assurance are: (1) The unconditional and universal promise of Almighty God. Jesus declares: "All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in wise cast out" (John 6:37). (Read: I Timothy 2:4; II Peter 2:9) (2) The love of God. Because God loves those whom He has purchased by blood and because this love is stronger than death and more powerful than the hosts of darkness, the believer can rest assured that when he believes in Christ he is saved. Paul suggests this in Romans when he asks: "If God be for us, who can be against us?" and continues: "Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? ... For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord" Romans 8:31-39. (Read John 3:16-21) (3) The perfect finished work of Jesus and His continuous intercession for the believer. "It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us" Romans 8:34. (Read Heb. 7:25) (4) The promise of our Lord that none of those who trust in Him shall be lost. "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand" (John 10:27,28.) Note: They hear, and they follow in obedience!
  31. 31. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #31 (5) The witness of the Holy Spirit in the believer's heart. "And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us" Romans 5:1-11. The Areas of Assurance (1) Salvation. When assured that God is truly his salvation, the believer may rest in quietness of spirit and great confidence. "Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid; for the Lord JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation" (Isaiah 12:1-3). (2) Adoption. When saved we become God's children. The assurance of sonship, or that we have become members of the family of God, is the legitimate heritage of all who believe. "Beloved, now are we the sons of God ..." (1 John 3:1-10; Romans 8:14-17). (3) Eternal life. "These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life ..." (1 John 5:13; 2:3-6). (4) Vital union with the Lord Jesus and Almighty God. Every believer becomes a member of the body of Christ and is linked in a vital union with Him. This union should bring assurance to every believer and fill his heart with joy unspeakable. Paul says: "Know ye not you own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you ...?" (2 Corinthians 13:5). "For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones" (Ephesians 5:30; 4:12-16; Hebrews 10:22-25). The Effects of Assurance (1) The believer should never cease to praise God that the issues of eternity have been lovingly and forever settled. Read 2 Corinthians 2:14; Colossians 1:12-14. (2) The believer should walk in love towards his neighbor. Love of one's brother is demonstrable proof that his assurance is well grounded. "We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren" (1 John 3:14; 5:1; John 13:34-35). (3) His testimony to the lost should be with convincing boldness based upon complete assurance. Paul was an excellent example of this sort of witnessing. His faith was unwavering. Therefore he could write to the Thessalonians that his gospel came to them not "in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance" (1 Thessalonians 1:5; 2 Timothy 1:12). (4) The believer must "hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end" (Hebrews 3:6). He must hold the beginning of his confidence "steadfast unto the end" (Hebrews 3:14). - Dr. Harold Linsell, "A Handbook of Christian Truth"
  32. 32. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #32 - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. What is the main purpose of Assurance? 2. Define Spiritual Assurance? 3. What are five (5) grounds of a Believer's Assurance? (Define each.) 4. In what four (4) areas does Assurance empower a Believer? (Define each.) 5. What are the four (4) effects of Assurance, and how should they each effect the life of a Believer? 6. How can we be Assured (certain) of our Salvation? Next Scripture Memory Verse: 2 Timothy 2:12
  33. 33. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #33 Sanctification: "Sanctification = to set apart for sacred use; consecrate; to make holy; purify; to make productive of holiness or blessing." "A holy life is a life given to God and accepted by Him. He is the holy man, who lives no more to himself; who lives no longer for his own will or in the way or spirit of the world, but who lives to God and in His will; who loves and obeys Him, considers and serves Him in everything, and who makes all the common, as well as the sacred things of his life, honors his Lord by doing them in such a manner as pleases Him." - General Bramwell Booth, The Salvation Army Many people think that sanctification, or holiness, has to do only with the soul. But the truth is that it has to do with every part of our nature and every article of our possession. The body is to be sanctified as well as the soul (1 Thessalonians 5:23). What is Holiness? (Sanctification) (Samuel Logan Brengle, "The Way of Holiness") Holiness is conformity to the nature of God. It is likeness to God as He is revealed in Jesus (1 John 3:3; Matthew 5:48; John 13:34; 14:20). The Bible teaches that we can be like Jesus. We are to be like Him in our separation from the world, in purity, in love, and in the fullness of the Spirit. This is holiness. This work was begun in you when you were converted. You gave up your sins. You were in some measure separated from the world, the love of God was in some degree shed abroad in your heart, and you felt that God was with you. But unless you have been sanctified wholly, you also feel that there are yet roots of bitterness within: quickness of temper, stirrings of pride, too great a sensitiveness to praise or blame, shame of the Cross, love of ease, worldly- mindedness, and the like. These must be taken away before your heart can be made clean, love to God and man made perfect, and the Holy Spirit have all His way in you. When this is done, you will have the experience which the Bible calls holiness ... the birthright of all God's dear Children. Holiness then is not maturity, but purity: a clean heart in which the Holy Spirit dwells, filling it with pure, tender, and constant love to God and man. Why should we be Holy? (1) We should be holy because God wants us to be holy. He commands it. He says, "As He which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy” Read 1 Peter 1:13-17. (2) We should be holy because Jesus died to make us holy. He gave Himself to stripes and spitting and cruel mockings, the crown of thorns and death on the Cross for this purpose. He wants a holy people (John 17:17; Titus 2:14; Ephesians 5:25-27). Let us not disappoint Him. Let not His precious Blood be spent in vain. Read 1 Peter 1:18-23
  34. 34. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #34 (3) We should be holy in order that we may be made useful. Who have been the mightiest men of God of all the ages? They have been holy men; men with clean hearts on fire with love to God and man; unselfish men; humble men who forgot themselves in their love and toil for others; faithful men whose lives were "hid with Christ in God." Moses, the meekest of men; Paul, who would gladly pour out his life a sacrifice for the people; General Booth and ten thousand times ten thousand other men and women who were "great in the sight of the Lord." These are the holy ones whom God has used. Read 1 Peter 2:5,9. So long as there are any roots of sin in the heart the Holy Spirit cannot have all His way in us, and our usefulness is hindered. But when our hearts are clean the Holy Spirit dwells within, and then we have power for service. Then we can work for God, and do good in spite of all our ignorance and weakness. Read Isaiah 59:1-2; 2 Chronicles 7:14; 6:27-31. To be holy and useful is possible for each one of us, and it is far better than to be great and famous. To save a soul is better than to command an army, win a battle, rule an empire or sit upon a throne. (4) We should be holy that we may be safe. Sin is dangerous! Before the disciples got the blessings of a clean heart and the baptism of the Holy Spirit they forsook their Master and fled. Read 2 Peter 2:20-22; 3:17-18. (5) Finally, we should be holy because we are most solemnly assured that without holiness "no man shall see the Lord" Heb. 12:14. Additional Verses: Heb. 10:38; 1 Thess. 4:3-7; 1 Peter 1:15-16; Rom. 1:18; 1 Cor. 6:9-11.
  35. 35. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #35 - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. Define Sanctification. 2. How does Sanctification relate to a Believer's body? 3. In what ways does Sanctification allow Believers to be like Jesus? 4. When does Sanctification begin and how are we changed by this experience? 5. Why does God require all Believers to be Holy? 6. What role did Jesus plan to provide Sanctification to all Believers? 7. What should a Sanctified Believer now do? 8. What would hinder a Believer? 9. How does Holiness provide safety to a Believer? 10. What is the position of a man in an unsanctified condition? Next Scripture Memory Verse: Hebrews 12:14
  36. 36. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #36 Bible Reading and Scripture Memory: "Scripture Memory = the mental faculty of retaining and recalling scripture verses for the purpose of overcoming temptation, making correct life decisions, witnesses to one's faith, to strengthen one's spiritual walk; to store and retrieve data." Forty different authors writing over a period of 1,600 years penned the 66 books of the Bible. Four hundred silent years separated the 39 books of the Old Testament from the 27 of the New Testament. Yet, from Genesis to Revelation, they tell one unfolding story. Together they give consistent answers to the most important questions we can ask: Why are we here? How can we come to terms with our fears? How can we get along? How can we rise above our circumstances and keep hope alive? How can we make peace with our Maker? The Bible's consistent answers to these questions show that the Scriptures are not many books but one. Down through the ages, many have doubted the historical and geographical accuracy of the Bible. Yet modern archaeologists have repeatedly unearthed evidence of the people, places, and cultures described in the Scriptures. Time after time, the descriptions in the biblical record have been shown to be more reliable than the speculations of scholars. The books of Moses were written 500 years before the earliest Hindu Scriptures. Moses wrote Genesis 2,000 years before Muhammad penned the Koran. During that long history, no other book has been so consistently bought, studied, and quoted as this book. While millions of other titles come and go, the Bible is still the book by which all other books are measured. While often ignored by those who are uncomfortable with its teachings, it is still the central book of Western civilization. - Radio Bible Class, "10 Reasons To Believe In The Bible" No Spiritual Discipline is more important than the intake of God's Word. Nothing can substitute for it. There simply is no healthy Christian life apart from a diet of the milk and meat of Scripture. If we would know God and be Godly, we must know the Word of God - intimately. A 1980 survey by Christianity Today and the Gallup Poll supports this when it concluded that no factor is more influential in shaping a person's moral and social behavior than regular Bible reading. If you want to be changed, if you want to become more like Jesus Christ, discipline yourself to read the Bible. - Donald Whitney, "Spiritual Disciplines For The Christian Life" By having the Scriptures in our heart we can experience victory over sin, and can please God in all areas of our life. As the Apostle Paul said his farewell to believers from Ephesus, he committed them to God's care and reminded them that God's word "Can build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified" (Acts 20:32). The Scriptures give us food for spiritual maturity, and prepare us for our eternity with God. Not having a regular intake of Scripture will stunt our spiritual growth as surely as improper nourishment harms a child. "Like newborn babes," the Apostle Peter wrote, "crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation" (I Peter 2:2).
  37. 37. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #37 A very effective way of getting the Bible into your life is to begin memorizing key portions of it. Why should we do this? In Psalm 119:9 we read, "How can a young man keep his way pure? By living according to your Word." Then in verse 11 the psalmist says to the Lord, "I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you." God's word gives us answers to everyday problems. So we challenge you to hide His word in your heart - to memorize it - to become stronger in your Christian life. One good way to memorize Scripture is to quote the Bible reference at the beginning of the verse, and also repeat this reference at the end of the verse. Repeat each phrase of the verse several times until you know it. Then repeat what you have just learned, adding the next phrase. Repeat all of this several times until you know it, then add the next phrase. Repeat until you have memorized the entire verse. Three practical suggestions for consistent success in Bible Study: (1) Find the time - discipline yourself. It is best to set aside the first part of everyday for a special "quiet time" with God. As you slowly read the selected scriptures think about what you read. This will often lead you directly to areas that need your prayer. Bible reading, meditation and prayer combine to form a sweet union for the faithful believer, as he meets daily with his God. (2) Find a Bible reading plan - if you read three (3) chapters a day and five (5) on Sunday, you will read the Bible in one year. There are many plans offered, but whichever you choose - do choose one! Remember: Failure to plan is planning to fail! (3) Find a word, phrase, or verse to meditate on each time you read. Make this your meditation throughout the day. God will give you countless opportunities to share this truth with others around you, since you've taken the time to "hide His Word in your heart." (Other related verses: Ezra 7:10; 2 Timothy 4:13; 2 Timothy 3:16-17; John 17:17; Joshua 1:8-9; All of Psalm 119)
  38. 38. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #38 - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. Why is Bible Reading a necessity for a Believer? 2. What makes the Bible a unique book? 3. What is the most important Christian Discipline? 4. What does our faithfulness to this Discipline tell us about our Christian Walk? 5. Why should we "hide the Word in our hearts?" 6. Who can memorize Scripture? 7. What is necessary for consistent success in Bible Study? 8. In what ways will God honor our study of Scripture? 9. Do you have a Bible Reading and Scripture Memory PLAN? NO YES Next Scripture Memory Verse: Joshua 1:8
  39. 39. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #39 Prayer and Fasting: "Prayer = a reverent petition made to God; an act of communication with God, such as a confession, intercession, praise or thanksgiving." "Fasting = to abstain from certain foods for a period of time, as a religious discipline." "Prayer is not overcoming God's reluctance ... it is laying hold of His willingness!" - Richard Trench, Archbishop of Dublin (1807-96) "If it is coincidence, I sure have a lot more coincidences when I pray than when I don't!" Reading a book about prayer, listening to lectures and talking about it is very good, but it won't teach you to pray. You get nothing without exercise, without practice. I might listen for a year to a professor of music playing the most beautiful music, but that won't teach me to play an instrument. - Andrew Murray When a person is born again, the life of the Son of God is born in him, and he can either starve or nourish that life. Prayer is the way that the life of God in us is nourished. We look upon prayer simply as a means of getting things for ourselves, but the biblical purpose of prayer is that we may get to know God Himself. To say that "prayer changes things" is not as close to the truth as saying, "prayer changes me and then I change things." God has established things so that prayer, on the basis of redemption, changes the way a person looks at things. Prayer is not a matter of changing things externally, but one of working miracles in a person's inner nature. - Oswald Chambers The point of prayer is not to get answers from God, but to have perfect and complete oneness with Him. If we pray only because we want answers, we will become irritated and angry with God. We receive an answer every time we pray, but it does not always come in the way we expect, and our spiritual irritation shows our refusal to identify ourselves truly with our Lord in prayer. We are not here to prove that God answers prayer, but to be living trophies of God's grace. When prayer seems to be unanswered, beware of trying to place the blame on someone else. That is always a trap of Satan. When you seem to have no answer, there is always a reason - God uses these times to give you deep personal instruction, and it is not for anyone else but you. - Oswald Chambers The only abiding reality is God Himself, and His order comes to me moment by moment. Am I continually in touch with the reality of God, or do I pray only when things have gone wrong - when there is some disturbance in my life? I must learn to identify myself closely with my Lord in ways of holy fellowship and oneness that some of us have not yet even begun to learn. "... I must be about My Father's business" - and I must learn to live every moment of my life in my Father's house. Think about your own circumstances. Are you so closely identified with the Lord's life that you are simply a child of God, continually talking to Him and realizing that everything comes from His hands? Is the eternal Child in you living in His Father's house? Is the grace of His ministering life being worked out through you in your home, your work, in your circle of friends? Have you been wondering why you are going through certain circumstances? In fact, it is not that you have to go through them. It is because of your relationship with the Son of God who comes, through the providential will of His father, into your life. You must allow Him to have His way with you, staying in perfect oneness with Him. - Oswald Chambers
  40. 40. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #40 Is the Son of God praying in me, bringing honor to the Father, or am I dictating my demands to Him? Is He ministering in me as He did in the time of His manhood here on earth? Is God's Son in me going through His passion, suffering so that His own purposes might be fulfilled? - Oswald Chambers It is impossible for us to have living and vital intercession (prayer for others) unless we are perfectly and completely sure of God. - Oswald Chambers If we want to pray correctly, the first thing we should do is make sure that we really seek an audience with God - that we really get into His very presence. Before a word of petition is offered, we should have the definite and vivid consciousness that we are talking to God. If we want to pray correctly, these two little words must sink deep into our heart, "unto God" (Acts 12:5). The second secret of effective praying is found in the same verse, in the words, "without ceasing." In the Revised Standard Version "without ceasing" is rendered "earnest." Neither rendering gives the full force of the original Greek. The word literally means, "stretched-out-ed-ly." It is a pictorial word and wonderfully expressive. It represents the soul on a stretch of earnest and intense desire. "Intensely" would perhaps be as close a translation as any English word (See Luke 22:44; Hebrews 5:7; and Romans 15:30). In other words, the prayer which prevails with God is the prayer into which we put our whole soul, stretching out toward God in intense and agonizing desire. Much of our modern prayer lacks power because it lacks heart. When we learn to come to God with an intensity of desire that wrings the soul, then we will know a power in prayer that most of us do not know now. Prayer and Fasting It is in this connection that fasting enters in. In Daniel 9:3, we read that Daniel set his face "unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth and ashes." There are those who think that fasting belongs to the Old Dispensation, but when we look at Acts 14:23 and Acts 13:2-3, we find that it was practiced by the earnest men of the apostolic day. If we want to pray with power, we should pray with fasting. This of course does not mean that we should fast every time we pray. But, there are times of emergency or special crisis, when men of earnestness will withdraw themselves even from the gratification of natural appetites that would be perfectly proper under other circumstances that they may give themselves up solely to prayer. There is a mysterious power in such prayer. Every great crisis in life and work should be met in that way. There is nothing pleasing to God in our giving up things which are pleasant in a purely Pharisaic and legal way. But there is power in that downright earnestness and determination to obtain, in prayer, the things of which we strongly feel our need. This feeling of urgency leads us to put away everything, even things that are normal and necessary, that we may set our faces to find God and obtain blessings from Him. - R.A. Torrey, "How To Pray"
  41. 41. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #41 The disciples asked Jesus why they could not heal a demon possessed boy. Jesus said, "Because of your unbelief ... howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting" (Matthew 17:14-21). Faith needs prayer for its development and full growth, and prayer needs fasting for the same reason. Fasting has done wonders when used in combination with prayer and faith. This is a biblical doctrine. To fast, means to abstain from food. Fasting humbles the soul before God (Psalm 35:13); chastens the soul (Psalm 69:10); and crucifies the appetites and denies them so as to give entire time to prayer (2 Samuel 12:16-23; Matthew 4:1-11). It manifests earnestness before God to the exclusion of all else ( 1 Corinthians 7:5); shows obedience; give the digestive system a rest (Matthew 6:16-18; 9:15; Luke 5:33), demonstrates the mastery of man over appetites; aids in temptation; helps to attain power over demons; develops faith; crucifies unbelief; and aids in prayer (Matthew 4:1-11; 17:14-21). All believers are supposed to fast, but no regulation or set rules are given as to how long or how often. That is determined by the individual desire and need (Matthew 9:14-15; 1 Corinthians 7:5; Acts 13:1-5). Men should fast when under chastening (2 Samuel 12:16-23); under judgment (1 Kings 21:27); in need (Ezra 8:21); in danger (Esther 4); when worried (Daniel 6:18); in trouble (Acts 27:9,33); in spiritual conflict (Matthew 4:1-11); and when desperate in prayer (Acts 9). - Finis Dake, "Dake's Annotated Reference Bible" Hindrances To Prayer 1. A selfish purpose (James 4:3) 2. Unconfessed sin (Isaiah 59:1-2) 3. Idols in the heart (Ezekiel 14:3) 4. Lack of generosity (Proverbs 21:13) 5. An unforgiving spirit (Mark 11:25) 6. Wrong relationship between husband and wife (1 Peter 3:7) 7. Lack of Faith (James 1:5-7) (Additional Bible references: Matthew 21:13,22; 1 Corinthians 7:3-6; Ephesians 6:18; Philippians 4:6; James 5:15-16).
  42. 42. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #42 - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. What does Prayer have to do with Spiritual Nourishment? 2. What is the point of Prayer? 3. How does Prayer relate to our relationship with our Heavenly Father? 4. What is the basis of Prayer? 5. What two (2) things are needed for us to pray "correctly?" 6. How does Fasting relate to Prayer? 7. What are the seven (7) hindrances to Prayer? (Define each.) Next Scripture Memory Verse: John 16:24
  43. 43. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #43 Spiritual Gifts: "Spiritual Gifts = gifts given to every believer by the Holy Spirit. Every believer has at least one or more Spiritual Gifts." God has made provision for man to experience as much power and ability as he will ever need to live at top efficiency. Where is that potential? It is within you, if you've experienced a personal relationship with God (Read Colossians 2:10). You are complete in him. Whatever purpose God had in placing you on this earth, you have the capacity to accomplish that task. You're equipped to fulfill your call. You have all of the potential you need to serve God effectively. You have God's Word, God's Power, God's Character, and God's Gifts. These special gifts are essential to completion in Christ. They help you to function effectively and enable you to mature. They prepare you to be a participator in the Work of God rather than an observer. Spiritual Gifts are special abilities that God gives each believer to accomplish His work and to edify and build up the Church (1 Peter 4:10-11; 1 Cor. 12:4-12, 27-13:13; 14:25, 32-33). In his booklet "How to Be Filled with the Spirit," Dr. Bill Bright tells the story of a famous oil field known as Yates Pool. During the depression this field was a sheep ranch owned by a man named Yates. Mr. Yates wasn't able to make enough on his ranching operation to pay the principal and interest on the mortgage, so he was in danger of losing his ranch. With little money for clothes or food, his family (like many others) had to live on government subsidy. Day after day, as he grazed his sheep over those rolling West Texas hills, he was no doubt greatly troubled about how he would pay his bills. Then a seismographic crew from an oil company came into the area and told him that there might be oil on his land. They asked permission to drill a wildcat well and he signed a lease contract. At 1,115 feet they struck a huge oil reserve. The first well came in at 80,000 barrels a day. Many subsequent wells were more than twice as large. In fact, 30 years after the discovery, a government test of one of the wells showed that it still had the potential flow of 125,000 barrels of oil a day. And Mr. Yates owned it all. The day he purchased the land he had received the oil and mineral rights. Yet, he'd been living on relief. A multimillionaire living in poverty! The problem? He didn't know the oil was there, even though he owned it! Many Christians have a similar problem. They live in spiritual poverty, unaware of the potential that God has given them. They're unaware of the gifts of the Holy Spirit that they have. Can you know what gifts God has given you? Yes! It is possible, and in fact, it is expected that you will discern your spiritual gifts. God doesn't play hide-and-seek with his children. He wants you to see yourself as He sees you. It starts with faith - believe that you are gifted; then go to prayer - pray for understanding; and be aware of what gifts are available to you. Know what you believe! _________________________
  44. 44. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #44 Ministry of Helping 1. Serving - the ability to give assistance or aid in any way that brings strength or encouragement to others. 2. Giving - the ability to make and distribute money to further the cause of God. 3. Showing Mercy - the ability to work joyfully with those who are hurting or in need. 4. Craftsmanship (Creative Ability) - the ability to work with one's hands for the benefit of others. 5. Healings - the ability to heal a person spiritually, emotionally, or physically. 6. Prayer (Intercession) - the ability to fervently bring the needs of others to God's Throne of Grace. 7. Encouragement - the ability to inspire others with courage, hope, and fresh vision. 8. Hospitality - the ability to treat guests with warmth and generosity. Ministry of the Word 1. Apostleship - the ability to begin a new work for the Lord through the ministry of the Word. 2. Prophecy - the ability to proclaim or preach the Word of God. 3. Evangelism - the ability to present Christ is such a way that men usually respond by faith. 4. Pastor/Shepherding - the ability to care for a man's spiritual needs through teaching the Word of God. The ability to nurture others in truth. 5. Teaching - the ability to analyze and interpret God's truth and communicate it clearly and systematically. 6. Exhortation - the ability to motivate people to action, normally using the authority of God's Word. 7. Wisdom - the ability to apply God's truth to life. 8. Knowledge (Discernment) - the ability to know truth by the impression of the Holy Spirit. 9. Discernment of spirits - the ability to discern the spirit of truth and error. 10. Music - the ability to express one's relationship to God through music.
  45. 45. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #45 Ministry of Directing Others 1. Leadership (Administration) - the ability to lead others and manage the affairs of the church. 2. Faith - the ability to trust God beyond the probable and raise the vision of others. Ministry of the Spectacular 1. Miracles - the ability to perform acts contrary to natural laws, with power beyond human capacity. 2. Tongues - the ability to speak in a language unlearned by the speaker. 3. Interpretations - the ability to interpret the meaning of a tongue, though the interpreter hasn't learned the language. Since the very beginning of creation itself, it has been God's will to have personal and lasting fellowship with His highest creation -mankind! Because of sin, that personal fellowship had been broken, but through the Blood of Christ that fellowship can be restored. It is the purpose of God's Church today to fulfill the mission of leading men and women to Christ and we can accomplish that by using the Spiritual Gifts God has entrusted to every one of us. God provides believers with gifts in the above areas. Do you know, and are you using, the special spiritual gift that God has provided for you?
  46. 46. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #46 - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. Read Ephesians 2:10; 2 Corinthians 9:8-15; Matthew 5:16. Why are we to use the Spiritual Gifts God has entrusted us with? 2. Read 2 Corinthians 11:12-15; Galatians 1:6-9; 1 John 4:1. From these verses can we say that the Gifts can be counterfeited? 3. Read Acts 20:27-31; Matthew 7:15; 1 Corinthians 8:1-3. Can these Gifts be used for evil? 4. Read Luke 12:35-48. What is Jesus telling us about the use of Spiritual Gifts in His parable here? 5. Read Matthew 7:24-27 and 1 Corinthians 3:10-16. What do these verses say about those who faithfully use the Gifts God has given them in this life? 6. Which of the Spiritual Gifts are the most important? The least important? Next Scripture Memory Verse: Ephesians 2:10
  47. 47. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #47 Tithing: "Tithe = a tenth part of one's annual income, either in kind or money, contributed voluntarily; support for the clergy or church." "Everything you have is from God. You can show your gratitude to God by generously giving yourself - your time, your possessions, your talents, and your money - to those who have needs. Giving is sharing what God has given to us; we cannot give more than God will give back to us. Jesus said, "Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you" (Luke 6:38)." - taken from "Growing in Christ", by NavPress The Doctrine of Tithing was practiced for 430 years before the Law was given (Genesis 14:20; 28:22; Hebrews 7:1-11), and was also taught in the New Testament. 1. Christ taught it: (Matthew 23:23; Luke 11:42; Matthew 5:20 and Luke 18: 11-12; Matthew 10:10; Luke 10:7-8; Matthew 11:11-14 and Luke 16:16). 2. Paul taught it: a. Condemned robbing God (Romans 2:22; Malachi 3:8-10; and Lev. 27) b. Teachers are to be paid (Galatians 6:6) c. God ordained support of ministers (1 Cor. 9:7-14; 1 Timothy 6:17-18) d. Christians to give as God prospers them (1 Corinthians 6:12) e. Melchizedek priesthood is eternal and must be supported by the spiritual children of Abraham (Hebrews 6:20; 7:1-11; 17,21). f. Children of Abraham must walk in his steps (Rom. 4:12; Hebrews 7) g. Tithing is proof of obedience and appreciation of God's blessings (Rom. 4:12; Heb. 7:6-10; 1 Cor. 9:7-14; 1 Tim. 6:17-18; Mal. 3:8-10; Proverbs 3:9-10; Genesis 14:20; Deuteronomy 8:10-20) Blessings of Tithing (Taken from "Dake's Annotated Reference Bible" by Finis Dake) 1. Blessing of obedience (see above references) 2. God's House will not want (Malachi 3:10) 3. God's ministers will not want (1 Corinthians 9:7-14; 1 Timothy 5:17-18; Nehemiah 13:10; Malachi 3:8-10) 4. Material and Spiritual Blessing for the believer (Mal. 3:8-10; Proverbs 3:9-10; 2 Chronicles 31; Nehemiah 13) No N.T. Scripture ever mentions a substitute program for tithing!!!
  48. 48. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #48 - QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION - 1. What should be Tithed? 2. Who really owns everything we have? 3. Why should we Tithe? 4. What does Tithing prove? 5. What are the Blessings of Tithing? 6. What if I only have a “little”? Review all Scripture Memory Verses
  49. 49. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #49 ~~ END OF CLASS REVIEW ~~ You have now completed the "Foundational Bible Studies" Class. We have covered the following doctrinal topics: 1. Fellowship/Church Involvement. Church fellowship and accountability are keys to staying spiritually strong and out of trouble. No man stands well alone. We need others to grow and develop properly. 2. Encouragement. Being encouraged helps all of us to stay focused. Everyone needs cheerleaders and coaches in life. 3. Accountability. Men need accountability - to God, to others, and to themselves. Accountability is receiving spiritual input and/or correction from others regarding your Christian walk. 4. Christian Doctrines related to your relationship to God & Christ: Sin: Anything that is contrary to the known will of God. Salvation: Deliverance from the power of sin in your life. Atonement: Reconciliation with God by the sacrifice of Jesus. Substitution: Christ paying the debt of sin in our place. Repentance: To change direction from sin and to God. Faith: Unwavering confidence, loyalty, and allegiance to God. Regeneration: To be spiritually reborn by the Holy Spirit. Justification: To be declared free from blame. (Just-as-if-I'd) Assurance: Certainty of our forgiveness and salvation by God. Sanctification: Set apart - made conformed to the nature of God. Bible Reading & Memorization: Taking in and retaining Scripture for the purpose of having a proper relationship with God. Prayer & Fasting: Communication with God and identifying with His Nature. Spiritual Gifts: Special gifts given by the Holy Spirit to all believers for the edifying of the Church - Christ's Body. Tithing: Faithful stewardship in all areas of our life.
  50. 50. FOUNDATIONAL BIBLE STUDIES Page #50 Where do we go from here? So now what?!? Where do you go from here? We sincerely believe that you start the rest of your life the exact way you started this program - by paying close attention to the fundamental teachings of Scripture. Coach Vince Lombardi took a talented, but losing team of Green Bay Packer football players and turned them into champions by getting back to the basics of football - blocking and tackling. Like Coach Lombardi, we want to encourage you to hold onto and reinforce the "basics" of the Christian lifestyle - those things that have brought you this far. Bible Reading and Study: Being in the Word and having the Word in you, is a key to stability and proper direction for a Christian. God uses His Word to show us Himself and His Will for our lives. Prayer and Meditation: Prayer is our direct source of communication with the Father. All relationships are strengthened through good communication, and your spiritual relationship with God and other believers is no exception. A consistent prayer life will keep you in contact with the Father and allow you to share your heart with Him. Fellowship: No person can possibly be complete without the love and support of other people. Within the Church we are directed not to forsake the assembling together with other believers. We receive guidance, direction, correction in love, edification, encouragement, friendship, and much more from our interaction within the Body. Witnessing: Paul said to Timothy, "Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you. (Philippians 4:9). Each believer is called to share with others those things which God has been revealing to him through His Word, through other believers, and through the experiences of life. We are called to be witnesses of the life-changing power of God - this same power that has made us into the "New Creation" we have become in Christ Jesus (2 Corinthians 5:17). "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and lo, I am with you alway, ever unto the end of the world." Amen. (Matthew 28:19-20).

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