Okay, I think I’m a Christian…or at least interested in finding out more info.
Now What ?
There’s a verse in the spiritual Ezekiel Saw De’ Wheel that goes ‘some go to chuch’ fo’ to sing and shout, befo’ six months, deys all turned out’.
Translation: Some people go to church for entertainment or an emotional high. But their conversion is not genuine and in less than six months, they’re right back out in the world, acting no differently than they did before their profession of faith in Christ.
That’s a lot of what goes on with folks who make professions of faith in churches today. Fact is, a public profession (either standing in front of a church, coming down the ailse or saying a prescribed prayer and ‘meaning it’) is only as good as the knowledge that the person has regarding the Christian faith at the time they make it. Many churches with ‘new professors’ and ‘new members’ drop the ball here. They simply don’t educate their members on the basics of the Christian faith. They don’t take time and disciple them through the great doctrines of the faith…. they might fill their heads with ‘the church’s teachings’, but not necessarily on the Bible’s teachings.
Call this page step two, then. Stepping past the whole issue of whether or not one’s public profession is valid, those who do claim to now want to follow Christ should be immediately immersed into the teachings of the Christian faith. Time will tell whether the person making the profession of faith is truly a believer or not. The job of the Christian church is to make disciples, not simply converts.
That being said, every ‘new believer’ needs four things to grow in his/her faith. We’ll talk about each of these right now. They are:
- A Bible
- A Good Church, Sound Teaching and Fellowship With Like-minded Believers
- An Understanding of What It Means To Be A Disciple of Christ
- A Biblical Public Profession of Faith (Baptism)
- Internet and Book Resources You Can Use (directly below….keep scrolling down…)
Internet resources for you!!
As you read on the welcome page to this site…. there’s plenty of GOOD stuff on the net… and there’s also plenty of on the net masquerading as Christianity. You as a new believer (and even some older believers) have a hard time telling one from the other.
I’ll give you my top TWELVE list of good material and places to go visit on the net to cover just about every Christian need. In no particular order, they are:
1. Desiring GOD Ministries. If there’s a topic to be written on, John Piper has covered it. Go peep around through the library. John is a good man and a great teacher and he makes it a priority to remain faithful to the scriptures.
2. Capitol Hill Baptist Church. I used to visit CHBC sometimes after my old church’s 8am service… and let me tell you…. the people are kind, the church is very friendly and family-like (even to strangers!) and they preach and teach the Word of God verse-by-verse, chapter-by-chapter, allowing the scriptures to speak for themselves. The audio archive alone is worth the visit to the site. There’s enough material there to spend YEARS growing from it. And if you’re in D.C., go visit the church. Sunday morning service is at 10:45, but get there earlier because parking sucks. Tell pastor Dever I sent you.
3. Biblical Training. If you’re serious about your walk and being able to handle the word of God correctly, head here. Seminary professors (including one of my favorite authors, Bruce Ware) have made their lectures available online. You can’t get any better than this. They even have online courses for new believers. And best of all… it’s FREE.
4. Grace To You Ministries. John MacArthur comes on radio nationwide daily. He’s got a great website (look under Resources Section) with tons of articles, issues and answers and his radio program is very educational and spiritually filling !! Go visit!
5. The Spurgeon Archive. Charles Haddon Spurgeon has often been called the ‘prince of preachers’. The majority of his sermons are gathered up on this site for your edification and growth. Takes some time to get through, but he’s a deep brotha and well worth reading. Click on the link for his Morning and Evening Devotional under his writings to give you something to aid you with daily bible reading.
6. Ephesians FOUR Group. They GIVE away free Bible study software. Seriously. FREE. No lie. All you cover is shipping (which is like $10). Click and visit and get some.
7. The Hall Of Church History. Brought to you by the same guy who does the Spurgeon Archive (Phil Johnson of Grace Community Church in California). The church hasn’t always been the same. As you grow as a Christian, this is a good place to visit. Learning about believers from the past and how the church used to be will give you much appreciation (and in some cases, much sadness) as you look at the church today.
8. The Bible Gateway. 30+ Bible translations online, free for you to use. Don’t have your own Bible ? If you’ve got a computer and an internet connection, you do now. It’ll also give you a chance to compare various Bible translations.
9. Bible Study Toools. Bible Dictionaries, Commentaries, Lexicons and much, much more. Having problems understanding some things in scripture ? Click here.
10. Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry (CARM). Matt Slick has done with his site what I hope to do with this one – provide resources on every possible topic on the Christian faith and put solid answers on the net. If you can’t find the answer to your question here, wait a while – Matt will write something about it.
11. Reformed Answers. Third Millennium Ministries has done an excellent job with this website, having it become a clearinghouse for answers on Biblical topics from seminary professors. Got a question ? They’ve probably answered it or they’re in the process of answering it.
12. Family Life Today. With a particular focus on strengthening families and marriages, Dennis Rainey and Bob Lapine’s ministry site is a goldmine!
12.5. You can also get some basic info and ask some basic questions over at our sister site’s discussion board: http://talk.lifedoctrinemusic.com
The book market is filled with good and not-so-good resources, just like the web. The following five books are books I recommend for new Christians and those wanting to get serious about their walk with Christ.(as usual, click through here and buy directly from Amazon.com…and you’ll also support this site!)
Fifty Reasons Why He Came To Die, by John Piper. Yes, I’ve already recommended Piper’s website to you, but I’m also recommending this book. I picked up a copy from SAM’s club days after it came out. It’s is plain, plain, plain english. But in addition to explaining to you in greater detail why Christ came to die, it teaches you. Each entry is about a page and a half. You could read this whole book in a day (2 hours) – it’s that light. But you’ll wanna read about 2-3 entries, examine the scriptures and think on these over the course of the day. You can visit Piper’s website and read the whole book online. His ministry will also send it to you free if you can’t afford to buy it.
Knowing Scripture, by R.C. Sproul. This is one of Sproul’s classic works and many folks have come to use it over the years as a basic introduction on how to read and understand the Bible. It’s short, easy to read and very informative.
Essential Truths of the Christian Faith, by R.C. Sproul. This book takes 102 different areas of Christian teaching and belief and covers them 2-3 pages at a time with very easy to understand definitions. It’s a great ‘intro’ book for someone just starting their Christian walk.
Foundations of the Christian Faith by James Montgomery Boice. Jim Boice has made theology accessible by the average person. This is one of those books you’ll reference for YEARS to come if you’re a new believer or even if you’re an old believer looking to grow a bit more.
Keys to Spiritual Growth, by John MacArthur. MacArthur breaks the Christian life down into 13 areas and gives us a road map/how-to-guide to grow spiritually as a Christian. Written on the level of the average person, this book is GREAT reading and is one that you’ll want to keep in your library and keep referring back to over the years.
These five books (and there are MANY more I could recommend) should be able to give you a solid foundation and start in your walk as a Christian. And if you’re not a Christian, but still want information because you’re searching, these books will do well for you.
Questions ? Comments ? When all else fails, drop me an e-mail and I’ll do my personal best to point you toward some good material, answer questions you may have on certain things, and much more.