Welcome to Iola Baptist Temple s Spiritual Health Club. My name is Rocky, and I will be your personal trainer corny, I know, but give it a chance!

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1 1 Welcome to Iola Baptist Temple s Spiritual Health Club. My name is Rocky, and I will be your personal trainer corny, I know, but give it a chance! The following lessons are designed to get you into shape...spiritually, that is. I Timothy 4:7,8 says: But refuse profane and old wives fables, and exercise thyself rather unto godliness. For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come. We know by certain signs that we are out of shape physically. You know you are out of shape if: -You are out of breath after climbing a flight of stairs -Your heart is pounding out of your chest from running across the street -You look in the mirror, and...oh yeah! You need to get into shape! Well, spiritually we can recognize some signs that we are out of shape, too. The Bible gives us many lists of ways we can know we are healthy, spirit-filled Christians. Here are a few to consider: -I Cor. 13: Gal. 5:22 -Eph. 5: 1-4 1

2 2 Just as physical exertion tests your heart, lungs and muscles; the trials of life test your spiritual condition (James 1: 1-4). So How Do You Measure Up? Need to Get into Shape? Before beginning any exercise program, you are cautioned to check with your physician... And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners? But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick. Matthew 9:11-12 Jesus is the Great Physician, so let s check in with Him. Sinners must go to Jesus for help! Perhaps you think you are okay. You think you have a healthy heart -Every year, many die while exercising because their heart was not suitable (ex: marathon runner drops dead from heart attack). -If they would have gotten checked out by the doctor, he would have revealed the problem (like a blockage in the heart or a heart disease) and a simple procedure could have prevented death! 2

3 3 One of the first things the physician asks about is your family history. What have you inherited from Mom and Dad? Grandpa?...Great, Great, Great Grandpa? God says we ve ALL inherited a heart condition... Jer. 17: 9-10 Rom. 3:10 Rom. 3:23 Rom. 5:12 Our heart is deceitfully wicked None of us are good Our sins separate us from God We will die in this condition! We are all in critical condition, spiritually, and we are in need of a simple procedure that can save our souls for eternity... -There is a cure: Rom. 5:8 -It s free to us: Rom. 6:23 -Anyone can receive new life today! Rom 10:9-13 3

4 4 Now, you are ready to get into shape, and there is no better way to do that than to join a gym. It s not the facility that is important, but the people: -the ones there who are more fit can inspire you. -experienced trainers can help you stay on track. -others there, just like you, are also trying to get into shape. -just think, you could even inspire the others This is why, for your spiritual health, you need to join a church! (Heb:10:24, 25) When you were born, you were given some identification to prove who you are. When you are Born again into the family of God, you are going to need some proof as well. it is d n a., D I. f o m r this fo s a m s ti p a b o t g y. d o b I am referrin h rc u h c r u o an join c u o y e r fo e b d e ir requ 4

5 5 Since there is so much confusion about the purpose of baptism, the candidate for baptism, and the method of baptism, it is necessary that we look at what the Bible says: Why get baptized? (the purpose) As already said, baptism is simply a form of identification. The Bible tells the church to baptize those who believe (Acts 2:41, 8:36-39). It is no more necessary for your salvation than a driver s license is necessary for you to drive you can certainly drive without having a license, but the authorities require it. Likewise, we get baptized in order to be obedient to our Authority. Who can be baptized? (the candidate) In order to be baptized, as mentioned above, one must have accepted Jesus and believed on His death, burial, and resurrection. It is ridiculous to baptize an infant. They are not old enough to understand what the Bible says and certainly cannot understand their need to be saved. How should we be baptized? ( the method) Sprinkling water on our head? Pouring it over our head? Or dunked under the water? Well, by definition, baptism is immersion, and considering what it symbolizes, there is only one way that makes sense!... 5

6 6 Baptism is a picture of Christ s death, burial, and resurrection. Just like He was put under the earth and raised up to new life, we are showing that we have followed him and have died to the old self, and through faith in Him, have raised to a new life Rom. 6:3-5 Now, if you have made the decision to give the Lord Jesus Christ your sin-diseased heart, you have been given the grace of God (a clean bill of health from the Great Physician and a promise of eternal life salvation), and if you have been baptized into a local, Bible-believing church (for the sake of our illustration, a Spiritual Fitness Center ), you are on your way to good, spiritual fitness and all the benefits that come with it peace, love, joy... 6

7 7 Some things you just know are good for you! And some, NOT Before moving on, I must admit: there is so much to know concerning God, the Bible, and spiritual things, it can be quite overwhelming. Please stick with it! No exercise program works if you don t stick with it. We will try to cover as much as possible, and I hope you will learn a lot, but most things you can start on right away. (No one has to tell you that if you want to lose weight you need to exercise and eat better...duh! So, when it comes to spiritual fitness, don t wait to start doing the things you know you need to do: -Pray even if you don t know how! (1 Thess 5:17) -Study your Bible even if you don t understand it! (2 Tim 2:15) -Attend church services even if they get boring! (Acts 2: 41-47) -Tell others about Christ even if it s not cool! (2 Tim 1:8,9) 7

8 8 If I went to the gym every day for 3 hours, but all I did was sit down at a table, eat doughnuts, and drink coffee during that time, wouldn t it be foolish for me to say, This gym isn t helping me any, I quit!? Following are some things I want you to consider about your church: -It s not perfect! What!!!? That s right. You may find hypocrites, ignoramuses, immature people, bossy people, know-it-alls...congratulations! You should fit right in, because you are not perfect either! -It is good for you Mostly, it is made up of people who love the Lord, want to do right, and want to grow in His knowledge and grace...and they want you to do the same. -It is not a place to eat doughnuts Ok, I have eaten lots of doughnuts in church, but what I mean is, just like it seems counterproductive to eat junk at a gym, where you go to get physically fit, we don t believe church should be a place to listen to music that sounds like the world s music, dress the way the world dresses, talk the way the world talks...in order to become spiritually fit, we are trying to avoid things that feed our fleshly desires which are contrary to the things of God. (1 John 2:15-17) 8

9 9 1. Read your Bible (Everything we learn, spiritually, comes from God s word. We MUST read it as often as we can) 2. Pray (I don t just mean saying grace for your meal, I mean a time each day you set aside to talk to God) 3.Tell someone about Christ (At least, invite them to come to church with you next week) Extra Credit: learn the importance of a journal/log. Write down the amount of time each day you spend doing the above activities, not to impress anyone, but to help you progress in your spiritual growth. 9

10 10 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. I have sworn, and I will perform it, that I will keep thy righteous judgments. (Psalm 119: ) Everything you will learn in this class is with the intent that you will know this Book better and love it more. It is the foundation of our entire faith. So, don t you think we ought to know a little bit about it? If you want to eat right and excise right, and you try to read books about what to do, you will find a lot of variations: Carbs, no carbs, Fat, low-fat, no fat...running is good, running is bad, work out every day, work out every other day, high reps, low reps, light weight, heavy weight...ummm, so which do I do? Thankfully, we have a guide Book that tells us exactly what to do spiritually, but at first you might be similarly confused: Non-Christian Religions -Hinduism -Buddhism -Islam -Taoism -Judaism Secular Religions -Atheism -Agnosticism -Secular Humanism 10 Even Christian Religions -Jehovah s Witnesses -Mormonism -Christian Scientism -Assemblies of God

11 11 Before we look at what this church teaches, I want you to view the Bible that we use as the final authority on everything we do and teach. We believe that the Bible we use is the inspired word of God, but don t want you to believe us simply because we say so. Lot s of people claim to have the Word of God and it looks quite a bit different than what we use... 1.Mormons have an added book (the Book of Mormon) 2.Catholics have the Apocrypha books 3.Jehovah s Witnesses have their special translation So let s look at some facts about the Bible we are talking about, the manual we will be using in our spiritual gym that has been proven to work in the lives of many saints for centuries: -It contains 66 books -It has 40 human authors who lived within about a 1,600 year time period. It is supernatural how it fits so perfectly together. One man said, Beethoven and Motzart could not have written a better harmony. -It contains Old Testament (starts with the creation of man) and New Testament (starts with the birth of Christ). -It ends with prophecy concerning the end of this world, the beginning of a new world yet to come, and a look into Eternity. 11

12 12 Memorize the 66 Books of the Bible or Make a drawing of Bible book shelves -Book shelves (one for Old Testament and one for New Testament) will contain all 66 books with appropriate titles written on books. -Each shelf divides the Bible into their categories: law, history, poetry,... -Talk to teacher for more information and examples 12

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