It is of course common for Christians to attend Church on Sundays and get quite used to sitting through the sermon and at the end of it be complete unaware of anything said!
Conversely, whilst some can recall the message, they have no way of being able to evaluate the significance of the message and are therefore unable to put in to practice the point of the message.
In some churches, the church leader is told what to say and delivers the 'message' reading verbatim what has been issued.
Whilst we are told in the Bible to test everything we are told (1 Thessolonians 5:21 & Acts 17:11), there is an assumption that the information is actually being taken on-board or assimilated in the first place!
In the UK, the Church gets such a bad rap. The effectiveness of our faith can only be based upon the transmission of a consistent message from Church leaders and the belief of being lead by the Holy Spirit.
If we restrict our receptiveness to the spoken message, our submission to God and the Holy Spirit, how on earth can we expect to develop as effictive Christians.
When will we become, as it says in Scripture; 'Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won't be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth' (Ephesians 4:14).
I seriously don't think that thirty minutes on a Sunday will help us 'cut the mustard'. How can it! If you think about it; if you wanted to do a degree course you are given a select number of books and then you are expected to study them everyday, write up notes, complete assignments and ultimately complete a series of written tests upon which your are marked and graded.
When it comes to 'Life' we are instructed to read a series of books called 'The Bible' as it consists of sixty six books, and then what...
It seems we are left to get on with 'Life' by ourselves as no one is instructing us to read the Bible, make notes or do assignments, however, we will be tested - yep! you guess it, at the end, when we die. And seeing as it is the final test, if we completely refused to even look at the syllabus, how do you think we will be marked.
Scripture tells us that we are answerable for every action and spoken word! I don't think we'll get away with saying that we forgot to do our homework or it got lost somewhere.
So how can we develop as Christians and become more effective?
I can't say that I'm authority on learning or teaching and I'm certainly not a theologian but I can say that after five years of being what I would call a genuine 'Born Again Christian', the most effective path for me has been as follows:
Over the past five years I have read 100+ Christian books as well as reading the bible three times, the first two times it seemed to have no affect on me!
I also took the unusual step of literally testing what the speakers, and their interpretations of the Bible, were saying. I don't know about you, but I would not and could not believe the Bible unless I had first-hand experience of the promises written in it.
I think you can guess that this blog is being written because it demonstrates that I am wholly advocating everything written in the Bible as "TRUTH". I now stake my life on it 100%
It is important for Christians to get over the seemingly difficult barrier of studying a 2000 page book and start looking at it as a sixty six book library that you plan to study over a protracted period of time.
There is never enough time on Sunday and it can't be viewed as a weekly 'fix'. God wants us to be completely and wholly committed to him so that we can experience the best life we could ever have. And to experience that, we need to understand both his written word and be of a frame of mind that we are listening out for him all the time.
Remember: we are not a mistake and God wants us here living the life that he intended for us and NOT the life Satan has lied to us about!
Shalom means the following:
Jesus left us with his peace and expects us to live with his peace. If you are not doing so, then you need to spend some time studying his word to understand what it means to you.