The Importance of Understanding Primary Christian Teachings
Why is it so important that the Church understand the primary Christian teachings? If grace is the core of Christian living, why not just live as we feel moved in the spirit?
Perhaps our humanity prevents mankind from standing on the truth of God. We are emotional creatures, often governed by feelings rather than practical truth. Surely you have hear of those who cut off their nose to spite their face. Without a full understanding of primary Christian teachings and a commitment to live according to those truths, we would follow the emotional foolishness that leads into sin and sin deeper.
Conflict Over the Great Commission — Why the Absolutes of Christian Living Matter
Without coming to terms with certain core absolutes of Christian living, Christianity cannot be Christianity. We believe in God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. We believe in the presence of sin, mankind’s fallen nature, and the need for a redeemer. We believe in a literal heaven and a literal hell. We believe in the sure damnation of those who reject the finished work of Jesus Christ. We believe in the atoning death, burial and resurrection of the living Messiah.
These are primary Christian teachings that belong in all Christian doctrine. These are the core of Christianity that cannot be ignored or forsaken. Any deviations from these Christian absolutes ensure that the teachings are false and that they lack the words of salvation. These are the absolutes of Christian living that lead to eternal life; they are the fundamentals of true Christianity.
But aside from the roots of salvation, what are the primary life teachings of our faith?
This question is popular among the secular world. They want to know what it means to be a Christian in deed as well as in word. Is it because they do not encounter many living examples?
In grabbing hold of the great commission, issued in Matthew 28: 18 through 20, we often leap ahead of the primary life teachings within Christianity. You see: It is easy to talk about being a Christian, but when it comes to the living the lifestyle of a Christian, we often fall flat on our face. And this disembowels the message of our words, thus we also fail to meet the thoughts and intents behind the great commission.
The Power of Life Through Primary Christian Teachings
Think not that the following words suggest that Christians should withhold their testimony until some specific, Christian mile-points have been achieved. Neither should you think that this message is suggesting that Christians should hold back on individual advancement of the Great Commission.
I write here with back-to-back swords. Pursue the one but do not leave the other undone. Did not the woman at the well carry forth an immediate testimony? Did not Philip immediately find Nathaniel and share with him the Good News?
No. This is not about leaving the one undone while you seek to follow the other. It is a statement of our need to ensure that our words concerning the Gospel are supported by a lifestyle that submits to the life teachings of Christianity.
Laying aside then, the fundamentals of our faith, consider now a few of God’s guidelines for everyday life:
- Pray – in private more than you ever seek to pray in public.
- Rejoice evermore – but discern the difference between public display and heart-felt joy over the works of God.
- Give thanks in all things – but remember that true thanksgiving is not about self-exaltation. Is the focus on God or is it on boasting about how much “special” favor God has for “you”? Let he who thinks he stands beware lest he fall.
- Love everyone – friend and enemy alike, and then prove it to God.
- Live a blameless lifestyle – practice good behavior in all your dealings.
- Keep your word – let your yes be yes and your nay, nay.
- Restrain your lips – everyone has a song, everyone has a tongue, everyone has a gift, and everyone has a story but let these things be done in order and don’t always strive to be the “voice” in the know.
- Learn to listen – hearing what God has to say involves giving place to others; heed the words from James 1:19.
- Restrain from all appearances of evil – let your life fully reflect the image of Jesus Christ.
- Honor your body – this temple belongs to the Lord. Keep it free from sexual impurity, but also keep it free from cholesterol and all the other contaminates that can lessen your ability to perform God’s calling on your life.
- Care for the less fortunate – and do it without show. True love never exalts itself (1-Cor. 13: 3-8).
- Care for widows and orphans – without prompt and without the prayer of the Pharisee in the temple.
- Submit to God – Living free from sin, the power of Satan, and the desire to be highly esteem by men begins by learning to live according to the life teachings of Christianity.
Touching on the Core Absolutes of Christian Living
Christians should live a controlled lifestyle. The letter of the law may kill, but the Holy Spirit says that faith does not abolish the law; it establishes the law (Romans 3:31). Never conclude that freedom from sin is a freedom to sin. Christians understand the difference between right and wrong – not through the moral concepts of mankind but rather through the spiritual righteousness of God. We do His will only because we can do no less, so why do we so often brag of our accomplishments.
A detailed listing of the primary life teachings of Christianity far exceeds what is written in this article. But I am not seeking to establish your Christian absolutes for living. Every Christian man and every Christian woman must work out their own salvation. Do so, as the scriptures say, “with fear and trembling.”
Perhaps these words from Micah 6:8 will lead you along the way:
“He hath showed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?”