Thoughts for New Believers

By Milton Jamieson

“And now, Israel, what doth the LORD thy God require of thee?” —Deuteronomy 10:12 KJV

Now that you have bowed to the lordship of Jesus Christ and accepted Him as your Lord and Savior, He requires that you:

  • Turn your back on your old life – from the paths of sin and shame, and from worldliness and ungodliness.
  • Hate sin and love righteousness.
  • Do all your deeds in the light to the glory of God.
  • Walk no longer according to the darkness, and the thoughts and ways of men who know not God. Here are some practical suggestions to help you.

Read The Word
As God’s child, God expects you to spend time reading His Word and meditating on it. Do not neglect the Word of God – the Bible. We were born again by it (Jas. 1:18; 1 Pet. 1:23). The Word is able to:

  • Build us up (Acts. 20:32),
  • Keep us clean (Jn. 15:3, 17:17; Eph. 5:26; Ps. 119:9),
  • Prevent us from sinning against the Lord (v.11), and
  • Guide us as a light for our path and a lamp to our feet (v.105).

We need the Word of God for every step of our life. It is by His Word that we judge all things and are able to distinguish right from wrong. We should therefore read it frequently (Josh. 1:8), meditate upon it deeply (1 Tim. 4:15; Ps. 1:2), receive it gladly (Acts 2:41) and obey it readily (Rom. 6:17; 1 Pet. 1:22). By this we will have prosperous Christian lives, and the Lord will use us greatly. He will bless our lives and make us a blessing to many people.

Spend Time In Prayer To God
It is said that prayer is the Christian’s vital breath; as breathing is important physically, so is prayer in the Christian’s life. If we stop praying we will start losing the power of the new life. How very true is the saying “Seven prayer-less days make one weak”! We are encouraged by the Lord to “come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need” (Heb. 4:16), to “pray without ceasing” (1 Th. 5:17), and to “watch … and pray lest [we] enter into temptation” (Mk. 14:38). When we pray we are in touch with unlimited power, talking to and communing with our God. Our Lord sometimes continued all night in prayer to Him (Lk. 6:12). The Lord is our perfect example; let us be like Him.

The first thing we read of Saul, a man who acted violently toward Christians, after he submitted to the lordship of Jesus Christ was that he prayed (Acts 9:11). Ananias was afraid to go to Saul, but when the Lord told him that Saul was praying, he realized that Saul was no longer a persecutor. Instead, Saul was now a believer and a brother beloved in the Lord. Prayer is truly a sign of the new life and the relationship that we have come into, wherein we cry, “Abba, Father” (Rom. 8:15).

Attend The Meetings
God has established local assemblies in various locations for our help, encouragement and usefulness. We must not forsake “the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is” (Heb. 10:25). The Spirit speaks in the gatherings of believers, for He wants to minister to us not only as individuals, but also as the local church. We bear testimony to the Lord and to the one body of Christ to which all believers belong. In fact, there is no other gathering on earth to which the Lord promises His presence – but to the gathered saints alone. “Where two or three are gathered together in My name, there am I in the midst of them” (Mt. 18:20).

We encourage you to find the local assembly in your area and get the schedule of the various meetings. Be active as a member of the body of Christ in that locality. Do not let your seat at the meetings be empty, unless there is absolutely no way you can avoid being absent.

Get Baptized
Before our Lord left this world to return to His Father, He gave the commandment that those who believe on Him should be baptized “in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Mt. 28:19). While baptism does not save anyone, it is the Lord’s command.

When we are baptized we are publically placed under the lordship of Christ, declaring that we have died with Him, are buried with Him, and raised up to walk in newness of life with Him (Rom. 6:3-4). While being immersed in water does not bring about a good conscience (the blood alone does that), baptism is an answer to it before God (Heb. 9:14; 1 Pet. 3:21). It is one of the first steps in discipleship, saying we are prepared to follow and obey Jesus Christ as Lord. If you have not done so, do not wait; arise and be baptized in obedience to the Lord’s command.

Get Busy
Get busy in the Lord’s service. The Lord could have taken us home when we got saved, but He has left us here on earth to serve Him while He is away. When He was here He was the Light of the World (Jn. 8:12, 9:5). Now, like the sun at night, He is gone, and we are here to shine as the stars in this dark world. “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven” (Mt. 5:16).

“Let none hear you idly say, ‘There is nothing I can do,’ while the souls of men are dying and the Master calls for you” (Daniel March, 1816-1909) to act. Take a few gospel tracts with you everywhere you go and hand them to people. Some will refuse, but others will be only too glad to receive them. Tell everyone you meet about the Savior; write letters, texts and emails; call your friends and tell them; put a gospel tract with your letters. Help in Sunday School and young people’s programs. Be at the street meetings, prayer meetings and all the other meetings. Don’t wait to be asked to do something; open your eyes and see what needs to be done, be it great or small. Do it for the eyes of the Lord rather than to please men or to get praise for oneself (see Col. 3:23-24). All praise should go to Him.

Keep busy! Satan will find things for you to do if you do not keep yourself busy for the Lord. Visit the Sunday School children and their parents at their homes, the sick and the shut-ins, read for them and pray with them. Attend Bible camp in summer – meeting other faithful Christians of your own age, sharing with and sticking close to them.

Remember The Lord In The Breaking Of Bread
In Acts 2:41-42 we see that not only were the early disciples baptized to show their allegiance to the Lord Jesus, but they continued steadfastly in the teachings of the apostles, fellowship, the breaking of bread and prayers. It is the Lord’s desire for you to fellowship with His people. You need to be in that company of believers where the Lord is pleased to take His place in the midst, and where you will have things in common with others who are saved. We find that after Saul was converted he was in the company of the disciples who were at Damascus (9:19).

Another thing close to the heart of the Lord, which He would have you do, is to remember Him in the breaking of bread. On the night before He went to the cross, having gathered with His own, He took bread and gave thanks; He likewise took the cup, gave thanks and gave it to them, saying, “This do in remembrance of Me” (Lk. 22:19). We therefore ought to carry on this happy function of remembering our beloved Lord.

The early disciples used to practice this every day, but later it became the custom to break bread every first day of the week (Acts 20:7). The breaking of bread is so close to the heart of

the Lord that after He ascended into glory, there at the Father’s right hand, He revealed these things to the apostle Paul. So let us remember Him. We cannot do so too often. He said as often as we do it we do so in remembrance of Him, and in this way we show His death until He comes (1 Cor. 11:23-26).

What If I Sin?
“My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous” (1 Jn. 2:1). God hates sin, and we should hate sin too. But if we sin our Christian life does not end, for we have an Advocate with the Father. He represents us in the courts of heaven on the basis of His shed blood. We, as believers in Christ, are told to confess our sins, and He (God) “is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1:9). Do not hide or try to cover your sins, but confess them to God (Prov. 28:13). He loves us as our loving Father, and He will never leave us to suffer forever in sin. Instead, He will pick us up and clean us up that we may fellowship with Him again!

So, what does the Lord require of us? We are to do justly, love mercy and walk humbly with our God (Mic. 6:8).