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Friday, July 19, 2013

If You Were Arrested ... Insights

Before reading these insights, I encourage you to do the Bible Study "If You Were Arrested."

What are some of the things that should mark the lives of Believers?

From the passages in this study, a Christian should be recognized as someone:
♥ Who lives according to Biblical principles.
♥ Who is always seeking to improve their character.
♥ Who is always growing in love for others. 
♥ Who does things from the ♥, out of love for Christ.

1Thessalonians 4:1-12: 

v.1-2: Christians should be living lives that please the Lord, becoming more obedient all the time.

v. 3: Christians should be in the process of sanctification.

If you don't fully understand sanctification, I recommend this short, thorough article: What is the Definition of Christian Sanctification? 

Warren Weirsbe says, "The believer has been set apart for God; he or she is a saint, a set-apart one. We have the daily responsibility of devoting ourselves more and more to God so that in body, soul, spirit we completely belong to Him." *

Image: Free Digital Photos, Naypong
Sanctification is the process of becoming holy, becoming more like Christ, a lifelong process for the Christian. 

v. 3-7 These verses list a few specifics: sexual purity, self-control, fair treatment of others.

v. 9-10 An important part of sanctification is an increasing love for others, especially brothers and sisters in Christ.

v. 11, 12--Our lives should be productive, not disruptive or meddlesome.

v. 12--Our behavior will win us respect.

John 13:34-35: These are the verses that inspired the old folk song "They will know we are Christians by our love." ♪ ♫

1 Peter 3: 15-16:  Genuine Christianity is a ♥ issue. Our love for Christ should make us hopeful--something which will cause others to ask about our faith.

If you meet someone new, what "signals" make you think they are a Christian or not?

For me, first impressions are typically based on language, modesty, and attitude. I'm not always right, but it makes me think about what kind of first impression I give others. 

I remember a situation many years ago when we were relatively new in a neighborhood, and one of my new neighbors came to the door right as I was yelling at my children. I was a little flustered that day, but the next day I went to her and told her I was sorry for making such a bad impression and told her I was praying about having more self-control with my kids. She was not a believer, but I think it actually had a positive effect on our relationship.

* Wiersbe, W. W. (1992). Wiersbe’s expository outlines on the New Testament (601). Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.
copyright 2013, Gail Burton Purath, BiteSizeBibleStudy.com 
All Scripture NIV unless otherwise noted  

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