Making the choice to put your faith in Jesus Christ as your Savior is the most important decision of your life. You have “passed from death into life” (John 5:24).
Now that you are a Christian you need to put your faith into action in your life. You have begun a relationship with Jesus which needs to grow and deepen.
The Bible compares being in a relationship with Christ to the birth of a baby. The Gospel of John calls it “being born again.” (John 3:1-7). When anyone puts their faith in Jesus as Savior God gives them new life which is eternal.
John 3:36 “Whoever believes the Son has eternal life.”
2 Corinthians 5:17 “So then, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; what is old has passed away – look, what is new has come! (NET)
This is only the beginning of your eternal relationship with Jesus. You must “do those things which are pleasing to Him” (1 John 3:22) and get to know Jesus in a deeply personal way (2 Peter 3:18). God expects you to grown in your faith and development as a Christian (1 Peter 2:2)
9 Steps To Growing in Your Faith
1. Have Assurance Of Your Salvation
Jesus wants you to be secure in your relationship with him. When you put your faith in Christ you are eternally secure in him, you cannot lose your salvation.
You did not earn your salvation by any good works. It is the gift of God to you. In the same way, the reality of the security of your security is also God’s gift to you. You cannot keep yourself saved.
- “I have written these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.” (1 John 5:13 NET)
- “I tell you the solemn truth, the one who hears my message and believes the one who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned, but has crossed over from death to life.” (John 5:24 NET)
- I give them eternal life, and they will never perish; no one will snatch them from my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one can snatch them from my Father’s hand. (John 10:28-29 NET)
2. Confess Your Sins Each Day
Even though your sins have been forgiven and you have a new relationship with God, you will still sin. You cannot lose your salvation because that is the free gift of God based on His grace to you (Ephesians 2:8-9). But sinful actions or sinful thoughts can disrupt your fellowship with God and leave you with doubts and insecurity. Those sins need to be confessed to God so that your fellowship is not blocked.
Think of this as a family relationship. An earthly father loves his son and daughter and nothing can cause him to reject them or end that relationship. Whatever they do they are his children. But when a son or daughter disobeys the rules of the family there is a disruption in their fellowship. A father will not be willing to grant favors or requests by the children until they admit their failure and have their privileges restored. They don’t cease to be his children, but the father will discipline them so that they will learn to be obedient to him.
- “If we walk in the light as he himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say we do not bear the guilt of sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us.” (1 John 1:7-8 NET)
- But if we confess our sins, he is faithful and righteous, forgiving us our sins and cleansing us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar and his word is not in us. (1 John 1:9-10 NET)
- “My son, do not scorn the Lord’s discipline or give up when he corrects you. For the Lord disciplines the one he loves and chastises every one he accepts. Endure your suffering as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is there that a father does not discipline? (Hebrews 12:5-7 NET)
3. Be Baptized
One of the first duties of a new Christian is to be baptized. This is the pattern found in the New Testament whenever a person came to faith in Christ.
- “So those who accepted his message were baptized, and that day about three thousand people were added.” (Acts 2:41 NET)
- “So Philip started speaking, and beginning with this scripture proclaimed the good news about Jesus to him. Now as they were going along the road, they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “Look, there is water! What is to stop me from being baptized?” (Acts 8:35-36 NET)
Baptism does not save anyone, since we are saved by faith and not by any good works or actions that we do for God. Baptism is an outward sign or picture of an inward spiritual reality. It is a visible picture to others of what God has already done in your heart. Baptism is a symbol of your identification with the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ for you.
As in a marriage ceremony, the man and wife will take their marriage vows which unites them as husband and wife. Following that they will exchange and wear wedding bands which are an outward and visible sign of a commitment they have made. Wearing a wedding band does not make a person married, it is merely a symbol of the vows that they have taken. In the same way, baptism is an outward sign to others of your inward decision to have a relationship with God.
- “For by grace you are saved through faith, and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God; it is not from works, so that no one can boast. (Ephesians 2:8-9 NET)
4. Bible Reading
The Bible is God’s living Word to you. In it, God gives you guidance, insight, and correction in daily life. You can only be successful as a Christian by reading and obeying God’s Word.
- Every scripture is inspired by God and useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the person dedicated to God may be capable and equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:16-17 NET)
Reading, studying, and meditating on God’s Word is crucial to success as a Christian.
- Your word is a lamp to walk by, and a light to illumine my path (Psalm 119:105 NET)
- In my heart I store up your words, so I might not sin against you. (Psalm 119:11 NET)
The Bible is completely accurate and trustworthy. It does not contain any errors because it is the Word of God.
“The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God stands forever.” (Isaiah 40:8 NET)
“Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.” (Matthew 24:35 NET)
Here are some suggestions for reading your Bible:
- Don’t be in a rush. Reading your Bible is spiritual food which you need for strength in your Christian life. (1 Peter 2:2)
- Stop and think about what you are reading. Meditating (pondering) on God’s Word allows you to apply it to your life (Psalm 119:97, James 1:22-25)
- Where to start reading? The Gospel of John, Philippians, 1 John, Ephesians, Psalms, Genesis, James are excellent books in which to begin your Bible reading.
- As you read, mark your Bible with underlines or colored pencils so that you can find those verses again in the future.
5. Talk To God In Prayer
All human relationships depend on good communication skills. Whether at work, in school, with friends, or in a family setting we get to know each other by opening up to each other in conversation.
Prayer is communicating with God. It is being honest with God about our failures, our needs, our plans, and our goals for the future.
Jesus gave his disciples a model of prayer to use when they prayed. Matthew 6:9-13. We are not to pray this each time in meaningless repetition (Matthew 6:7). It is simply an outline we can use when we pray. We walk to our Father, we pray for His will in our lives, we express our needs, and we forgive others who have offended us.
The following verses will give you important facts about your prayers:
- 11 Principles of prayer
- The Principle of Faith – Matthew 21:22
- The Principle of the Holy Spirit – Ephesians 6:18, Romans 8:26
- The Principle of Confidence – Hebrews 4:16
- The Principle of Obedience – John 15:7, 1 John 3:21-22
- The Principle of God’s Will – 1 John 5:14-15
- The Principle of Partnership – MT 18:19-20
- The Principle of Submission – James 4:10, Luke 22:42
- The Principle of Jesus’ Name – John 14:13
- The Principle of Confession – Psalm 66:18, 1 John 1:9
- The Principle of Thanksgiving – Philippians 4:6, Psalm 100:4
- The Principle of Persistence – Luke 18:1,7-8
- 9 Obstacles to Prayer
- Lack of Consistent Fellowship with God – John 15:7
- Lack of Obedience – 1 John 3:22
- Unconfessed Sin – Psalm 66:18
- Wrong Motives – James 4:3
- Not asking in God’s will – 1 John 5:14-15
- Lack of Faith – Hebrews 11:6
- Giving Up – Luke 18:1
- Mistreatment of Your Wife – 1 Peter 3:7
- An Unforgiving Spirit – Mark 11:25
6. Find A Church
God does not intend for a Christian to live in isolation. Although there are many good online Christian resources and sermons, we need personal accountability, opportunities to serve, fellowship, and advice and training from more experienced Christians.
- “And let us take thought of how to spur one another on to love and good works, not abandoning our own meetings, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging each other, and even more so because you see the day drawing near. (Hebrews 10:24-25 NET)
A Bible preaching, theologically accurate church is a necessity. Many churches have web sites and post their mission statement, their doctrine, and information about their pastor. Often the sermon is also posted and when investigating a church it is helpful to listen for Biblical accuracy and practical application in the sermon.
Bible teaching seminaries will post a list of churches where alumni are serving. Some good sites are:
Dallas Theological Seminary: http://www.dts.edu/alumni/resources/findachurch/
The Master’s Seminary: http://www.tms.edu/AlumniMap.aspx
7. Share Your Experience (Witnessing)
Jesus wants you to share your faith with other people. You should not be a silent Christian but be willing to tell others the good news about salvation from sin.
- “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the farthest parts of the earth.” (Acts 1:8 NET)
- Do not be ashamed of your faith in Jesus – “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is God’s power for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.” (Romans 1:16 NET) “Whoever, then, acknowledges me before people, I will acknowledge before my Father in heaven.” (Matthew 10:32 NET)
8. Make Christian Friends
A Christian should not be friends with the world (1 John 2:15-17) or be in partnership with the unsaved (2 Corinthians 6:12-18) because they might influence us against God (1 Corinthians 5:9, Ephesians 5:6-7).
We are to witness to our unsaved friends and pray that God will bring them to salvation. Be prepared to be mocked or condemned by your former friends because of your changed life (1 Peter 4:12-19. Old friends will be surprised at your changed life and they will often make fun of you.
1 John 3:13 “Therefore do not be surprised, brothers and sisters, if the world hates you.” (NET)
1 Peter 4:4 “So they are astonished when you do not rush with them into the same flood of wickedness, and they vilify you.” (NET)
God calls people into a relationship with Himself and with other Christians. No Christian can be successful in walking with God without the support of other Christians. God brings us into His family (Ephesians 2:19), which is accountable to each other (James 16), and which meets together regularly (Hebrews 10:24-25).
Genuine Christian friends will love you, support you, challenge you, and help us in holy living.
- Love one another (John 13:34)
- Pursue the building up of one another (Romans 14:19)
- Accept one another (Romans 15:7)
- Admonish one another (Romans 15:14)
- Care for one another (1 Cor. 12:25)
- Serve one another through love (Galatians 5:13)
- Bear one another’s burdens (Galatians 6:2)
- Forgive each other (Ephes. 4:32)
- Teach one another (Col. 3:16)
- Comfort one another (1 Thes. 4:18)
- Encourage one another (1 Thes. 5:11)
- Pray for one another (James 5:16)
9. Know Your Enemy
When you became a Christian God brought you out of Satan’s kingdom (his area of influence) and into God’s kingdom (Ephesians 2:1-6). You are no longer a slave to sin and to Satan (Romans 6:17-18) and are free to please God now.
Satan is the enemy of God and also of God’s people. Satan will do everything he can to harm you spiritually and to try to destroy your new relationship with God.
- 1 Peter 5:8 “Be sober and alert. Your enemy the devil, like a roaring lion, is on the prowl looking for someone to devour.” (NET)
- Luke 22:31-32 “Simon, Simon, pay attention! Satan has demanded to have you all, 77 to sift you like wheat, but I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail.” (NET)
But God has given us victory over Satan when we live by faith and continue to read God’s Word and apply it to our lives.
Ephesians 6:10-13 “Finally, be strengthened in the Lord and in the strength of his power. Clothe yourselves with the full armor of God so that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world rulers of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavens. For this reason, take up the full armor of God so that you may be able to stand your ground on the evil day, and having done everything, to stand.” (NET)
1 Corinthians 15:57 “But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ! (NET)
Also read Romans 8:39-41, 1 John 5:4, Revelation 12:7-11
10. Let us know how we can help
We would love to hear from you and to offer you spiritual help in your growth as a Christian.
Our mailing address: RRNC, 8920 Emerald Park Dr. #E, Elk Grove, CA 95624
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Scripture and/or notes quoted by permission. Quotations designated (NET) are from the NET Bible® copyright ©1996-2006 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. http://bible.org All rights reserved.