I AM A MEMBER OF A GREAT COMPANY, OR BROTHERHOOD - "The general assembly and church of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven", Hebrew 12:23

This company has been called out from the world to show God's goodness:

"But ye are an elect race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God's own possession, that ye may show forth the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light: who in time past were no people, but no are the people of God: who had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy." 1 Peter 2:9 - 10

And we are to be different from the world.

"For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people,  training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age,  waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,  who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works." Titus 2:11 - 14

Since this is true, I want to take my place worthily among this brotherhood and to promote its good:

"I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called,  with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love,  eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace." Ephesians 4:1 - 3

And to insure my own spiritual development

"until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ,  so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes." Ephesians 4:13 - 14

In order to do this, I must study to know how to handle the Bible properly.

"Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth." 2 Timothy 2:15

To be sure of where I stand and in order to help others, I will review the steps I have taken which hav egiven me the right to be called a Christian and to be able to give a reason for my hope.

"but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect," 1 Peter 3:15

First, I heard the Word of Christ

"So belief cometh of hearing, and hearing by the Word of Christ" Romans 10:17

Through preaching

"For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe." 1 Corinthians 1:21

From this preaching I learned that faith in God is necessary!

"And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him." Hebrew 11:6

And Faith in Jesus Christ as the Christ, the divine Son of God

"Let not your heart be troubled: believe in God, believe also in me." John 14:1
"For ye are all sons of God, through faith in Jesus Christ" Galatians 3:26

I came to that faith through a careful consideration of such thoughts as:

"The heavens declare the glory of God; And the firmament showeth his handiwork" Psalms 19:1

Then I learned that faith must show itself in works

"ye see that by works a man is justified and not only by faith" James 2:24

Therefore, I determine to change my manner of life, that is, repented for I realised that I must leave the life of sin.

To be continued...

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