Obeying God through the Spirit as a result of faith in Christ…
This theme is touched on in section 5.2.3, Mon rapport à la foi, p. 103-107, of my essay Récit et interprétation d’un parcours éducatif (pdf, 192 p.). The above mentioned section about my relationship to faith, should be read while taking into account the anthropological posture (p. 42) that circumscribes the theoretical and methodological framework of interpretation (p. 32-59) of this master’s degree thesis dealing with distance learning accompaniment in a naturalistic cultural environment.
For a more direct treatment of the issues raised by the question “Doing but how?” my essay Comment donc comprendre la Bible aujourd’hui ? (pdf, 139 p.) should be consulted, reading all of chapter 5, Bible et spiritualité chrétienne, p. 96-116, being attentive to section 5.3, Obstacles à la spiritualité chrétienne, p. 101-110.
If what we are doing seems more like an obligation than it does the natural fruit of who we are in Christ, we should reconsider our understanding. The Bible study notes, En Christ, nous sommes libres ! Le sommes-nous ? (pdf), and its accompanying study guide, Application, synthèse et questions (pdf), invite us to consider whatever we are doing for Christ as a result of the freedom we have in Him. Does not Jesus Himself indeed say to believers:
“If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:31b-32, NIV, 2011).
What follows is only included in the English version of www.savoiretcroire.ca. From a Christian perspective, prayer precedes action. For examples of prayer or prayer based action, see http://www.100huntley.com (Video -> Search):
- Praying Big 1/3, Will Davis Jr., April 30, 2009;
- Praying Big 2/3, Will Davis Jr., April 30, 2009;
- Praying Big 3/3, Will Davis Jr., April 30, 2009.
- Don’t Give Up on Your Kids, Lorie Hartshorn, July 18, 2013.
Prayer and prayer-based action that are truly Christian go beyond the superficiality of do’s and dont’s. It is rooted in understanding what it is to live in a faith-based relationship with God. Such a relationship requires more than some sort of superficial understanding of isolated Bible verses considered outside of the context of what the Word of God as a whole has to say about the whats hows and whys of living in a certain way and not in another. This is also true of everything that has to do with the type of relationships that lead to sexual intimacy and the formation of a family.
I came across two blogs that bring both of the truths I have just been saying:
- Life’s Journey — The Bible’s Relevance in a modern world helped readers understand that the Risen Christ is our true North for living today (1 Corinthians 15:1-9), and that since He is living now, he can, and will, and does change lives (1 Corinthians 15:9-11). (This article and the blog it was published on have become unavailable in Nov 2018.)
- Snare-Escape — Choices about pornography and sex “is for anyone with questions as to whether pornography is ‘just adult entertainment’, or something that can destroy lives and marriages,” say the authors of blog’s author or authors, which would probably make this blog a fit introduction to the pointed material available below.
The following web sites contain material that should be read and listened to prayerfully. They provide an understanding rooted in the nature of God and of his relationship with us, and help us to grasp foundational concepts leading to the views that marriage should be between one man and one woman. They also help understand why sex should not precede the covenant of marriage, and how important it is to stay away from any thinking or behaviour patterns that can endanger the sacred relationship that only spouses can have with one another in the God-ordained scheme of things:
- Access www.focusonthefamily.com, and read everything as needed under: top menu -> marriage; top menu -> life challenges; top menu -> social issues.
- Access www.masteringlife.org, listen to the introduction, and read or listen to all material dealing with your particular concerns. Remember: with regards to our freedom to live as a Christian, our God is all-powerful in delivering us from any form of bondage or slavery to sin and to any destructive behaviour.
The next group of videos focuses on what sexuality is all about from a Christian perspective, and key aspects of living the freedom that comes with who we are as daughters and sons of the King of the universe. A number of specific areas of sexual brokenness are also explored through the testimonies of persons who have experienced sexual restoration through a new or renewed walk of faith in Christ.
Much of what is mentioned in these video interviews or presentations is also applicable to other forms of difficulties believers sometimes struggle with.
- Ruth Graham – Broken Hearts (adultery and abuse in her first two marriages);
- Sy Roger’s web site is the ministry of a formerly transgender Christian. Sy Roger’s testimony of his early days has been moved from its previous location, and can probably be found on his own site, within the context of his entire ministry.
- Dr. Warren Throckmorton – Gay Science or Politics? (Part I, YouTube);
- Dr. Warren Throckmorton – Gay Science or Politics? (Part II, YouTube);
- (for a secular perspective on the same general area of research,
visit the National Association for Research & Therapy of Homosexuality Web site, and the Voices of change Web site, for results attained through secular therapy);
Hence, whatever we do for God ought to be done from a posture of faith in Christ, involving confession and repentance, rooted in our understanding of who we are in Him: forgiven sinners having been made eternal heirs of the King of Kings! No matter what are the areas of our Christian walk that we are struggling with, the principles are exactly the same as those just summarized and encountered in the videos presented above.
The testimony of a Sy Rogers, formerly transgender Christian was removed from the list above and replaced by this paragraph pointing to Sy Roger’s web site, where material published by him can be viewed within the broader context of this entire ministry.
The following books by Dr. Neil T. Anderson may prove themselves helpful to Christians determined in resolving personal and spiritual conflicts in their lives:
- Liberating Prayer – Finding Freedom by Connecting with God,
Harvest House Publishers, 2003, 2012;
- Victory over the Darkness – Realizing the Power of your Identity in Christ, Regal Books, 1990, 2000;
- The Bondage Breaker – Overcoming Negative Thoughts, Irrational Feelings, Habitual Sins, Harvest House Publishers, 1990, 1993, 2000.
- Winning the Battle Within – Realistic Steps to Overcoming Sexual Strongholds, Harvest House Publisehrs, 2004, 2008.
Dr. Neil T. Anderson has also coauthored a number of books dealing with specific areas of difficulties Christians are sometimes struggling with. For example :
- Neil T. Anderson and Dave Park,
Overcoming Negative Self-Image,
Regal Books, 2003;
- Neil T. Anderson and Joanne Anderson,
Regal Books, 2004;
- Neil T. Anderson and Rich Miller,
Freedom from Fear – Overcoming Worry and Anxiety,
Harvest House Publishers, 1990, 1993, 2000.
All books authored or coauthored by Dr. Neil T. Anderson invite believers to renew their understanding of who they really are, and to trust God for living as pleases Him. There lies the key to happiness… through the freedom acquired for us, by Christ, when He died, so that we could, and would, live through Him.
You may also be interested in watching the ten lesson course in the field of Christian Ethics titled Making Biblical Decisions proposed by Third Millenium Ministries. It provides biblical and theological background helpful for the making of painful choices.
You wish to get involved and discuss about life-related subject matters, feel free to join our trilingual Community of dialog about the Christian Faith (French, English, Spanish).
Daniel Garneau, B Th, B Com, MA.
Updated : April 2017; January, June, and December 2018.