How to Christian: a 21 Day Study
This 21-day study has been created to help you understand “How to Christian.” This study may not answer ALL of your questions, but our prayer is that it will help guide you to a better understanding of the hope we find in Jesus. In this study, we will focus on:
- The Basics of Christianity (Days 1-6)
- The Benefits of Spiritual Disciplines (Days 7-18)
- The Bible and Your Destiny (Days 19-21)
Day 1: The Bible
The Bible can be intimidating. It’s large and complex. So often you hear people say things like, “I don’t know where to start” or “I don’t understand The Bible.” Those are valid challenges so if that’s you, don’t feel bad. You’re not alone. Let’s begin with an explanation of what the Bible is, and how it was written.
Ultimately, The Bible is the story of Jesus. You might be asking, “but doesn’t Jesus only show up like three-quarters of the way through the Bible?” Well, kind of, but the entire Bible is the story of God’s love for us and the sending of His son Jesus to pay the price for our sin. With Jesus’ resurrection, we now get to live a Spirit filled life loving God, and loving others. The people of The Bible we read about are not just random people of history either. They are a part of the lineage of Jesus. Starting in Genesis with Adam, all the way to Joseph and Mary, it is about the ancestry of Jesus, the prophetic words of His coming, and why we need Him in our life. It’s important to understand that the Bible is not a comprehensive book of world history but rather a small portion of the most important part of history.
The Bible consists of 66 books, including more than 40 authors written over 1400 years, covering roughly 3,000 years of history. When you begin to understand the harmony and unity of Biblical literature, this fact is amazing!
The Bible is divided up like this: the first 39 books are the Old Testament (before Jesus was born). The first five books are called The Torah (Genesis-Deuteronomy). Next, we have 12 historical books (Joshua-Esther). Wisdom literature, or poetry (Job-Song of Solomon).
Major Prophets (Isaiah-Daniel). Minor Prophets (Hosea-Malachi).
The next 27 books are considered the New Testament (after Jesus was born), consisting of The Gospels (Matthew-John), The Early Church (Acts), Paul’s Epistles (Romans-Philemon), General Writings of New Testament (James-Jude), End Times (Revelations).
The Bible, as we know it, was put together into one book around the time of 200 A.D. by a group of early church leaders. We believe the Bible was written by man and inspired by the Holy Spirit. The process of canonization (the choosing of the ancient writings that would be grouped together as The Bible) was inspired by the Holy Spirit, from Genesis to Revelation, and is free from flaw.
The Bible is like our instruction manual on life. Although it does not give us answers to all of our questions or have a verse for every situation, it teaches us something even better. It teaches us about the heart of God. Once you know someone’s heart, you understand the context of what they are saying, what they desire, and love. You can even know how they see the world. That’s why many times, The Bible doesn’t have to say something specific for us to know God’s desire for our life.
For example, those who are married, if you know your spouse’s heart, you can surprise them with a gift you know they’ll love, or anticipate a need. You can do things for them you know will fill their soul. As you work to understand your spouse better, you can honor them and serve them without them having to tell you what they desire, specifically.
The Bible gives us a glimpse of God’s heart. The more we understand the Bible, the more we know Him, and the more we can live according to His will and understand His longings for our life. For example, the Bible never says, “Don’t run a red light.” We know the heart of God honors authorities and cares of others; then we understand that the heart of God is for us to stop at a red light.
There are countless examples I could give, and the heart of God is an infinite well of wisdom and knowledge. We will never fully understand everything about God, which is good news! That means our journey of growing in relationship with Him is an endless journey full of good things.
Scripture of the Day
“14 But you must remain faithful to the things you have been taught. You know they are true, for you know you can trust those who taught you. 15 You have been taught the holy Scriptures from childhood, and they have given you the wisdom to receive the salvation that comes by trusting in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. 17 God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.”
– 2 Timothy 3:14- 17