Let's recap: In Pt.4, you learned that a professional athlete requires constant training in order to maintain his fitness and be the best runner he can be. With training in mind, what must we personally do to endure and put ourselves in line to benefit from Jesus' ransom sacrifice? Let's see what the Bible says.
We are in a race for life (Hebrews 12:1*). Just like the runner mentioned in Pt.4, we need to establish an exercise programme, but our exercise involves fortifying our hearts and minds spiritually (Isaiah 41:10*). Where do we start? First and foremost is getting to know God. You don't have to go looking too far to find him. He's provided the perfect manual to help you - His Word, the Bible (2 Timothy 3:16, 17*) and unlike human manuals that need to be constantly updated, Bible principles remain the same. Why? Because God has not changed - He doesn't need to - all His ways are righteous, just, perfect and beneficial! (Deuteronomy 32:4; Malachi 3:6; James 1:17*) As you continually read, study and meditate on Bible scriptures, God will become more real to you. You will come to understand that since He gave you life, you should worship Him alone (Revelation 4:11*). You'll come to know His personality from all the things He has made (Romans 1:20; 11:33*). You'll also come to understand that God doesn't cause your suffering (James 1:13*), but He actually cares for you (1 Peter 5:7*). As you build up your faith, you'll start to rely more on God rather then yourself (Proverbs 3:5-7*) and this will draw you close to Him and He will draw close to you (James 4:8*).
One of the first things you should know about God is that He has a personal name. In Hebrew, that Name is represented by the Tetragrammaton יהוה. When translated, this corresponds to the letters YHWH/JHVH, pronounced Yahweh or more commonly Jehovah (Exodus 6:3; Psalms 83:18*). Interestingly, your parents gave you a personal name and many people even have the same name as someone else [Peter, John and Mary are all common names]. Yet, there is only one Jehovah. He named Himself and no one else has that unique Name (Exodus 3:15; Isaiah 44:6*).
Then there's the beauty of creation? When you look up into the sky on a clear night, don't you marvel at the moon and all the stars you can see? They didn't just come about by chance like evolutionists would have you believe! Not only did God create them, He knows them all by name and not one of them is missing! (Isaiah 40:26*)
God is matchless in every sense of the word. His Sovereignty is absolute. As mere humans, we could never understand the depths of all He has done or is capable of doing (Romans 11:33*). Thus, the more you learn the truth about Jehovah God, the more you begin to appreciate His magnificent creations, the more you'll understand His righteous and moral standards and most of all you'll understand why Jesus came to earth (John 3:16*). Your love for God will grow, your faith will strengthen, which in turn will compel you to make adjustments in your life [like the runner mentioned earlier], in order to endure the trials and tribulations you'll face sooner or later in this wicked world (Romans 12:2; 1 Corinthians 6:9, 10; 1 John 5:3*). You are under obligation to get to know Jehovah God and Jesus (Deuteronomy 10:12; Ecclesiastes 12:13*). Such knowledge will help you avoid the death-dealing, morally-depraved "junk food" this world has to offer and fortify you in the race for life. Notice what James 2:26* says: "Faith without works is dead." There's plenty more to come, so stay tuned for the exciting series finale in Pt.6!
*New World Translation Bible (2013) available to read/download free here
See you next time!