Principle 4 (excerpt)

  

WITH THE HELP OF THE HOLY SPIRIT, I HUMBLY, BOLDLY, AND COURAGEOUSLY ASK HIM TO SEARCH ME AND REVEAL TO ME THE TRUE CONDITION OF MY HEART. TO SHOW ME MY ANXIETIES OR FEARS, AND POINT OUT TO ME MY SIN AGAINST GOD AND OTHERS IN MY LIFE. ONLY WITH HIS HELP CAN I KNOW FOR SURE, AND IN ALL TRUTH, THE EXACT NATURE OF MY SIN.

Once I have accepted Jesus as LORD of my life, He gives me the desire to start housecleaning. In Principle 4, the process of becoming more of what He wants me to become begins by taking a fearless personal inventory (because of my newfound belief of His unfailing LOVE to me), which is recognizing where I have fallen short of His standards in my life.

The first thing to do is to agree with God and His identifications of my sins. Next is to identify if these sins are still ongoing and to what extent the damage from these sins has caused in my life and the lives that surround me. One of the most helpful things to do is to write these down so that I begin to become accountable, to God first, others second. As I do this I will be encouraged by His grace, mercy, and faithfulness towards me as I die to myself, pick up my cross daily, and follow after Jesus my LORD. The witness of this growth will prepare me to continue on with Principles 5, 6, and 7.

Psalm 139:23-24

  1. Who does the Psalmist turn to in order to take an inventory? Who must I turn to then? 
  2. Do I think that I can find anything in my inventory that God doesn’t reveal to me? (compare with (cf) Hebrews 4:12-12; Psalm 139:1-4; Ecclesiastes 12:14)

Ephesians 4:17-5:21

  1. What are the three requirements stated in Verses 4:22-24? Can I do these things? Does God ever ask me to do something I cannot do? 
  2. Is Verse 11 of Chapter 5 saying that I should take an inventory?

Galatians 5:13-18

  1. How am I to know when I’m "indulging in sinful nature" without taking an inventory? 
  2. What happens to the "sinful nature" when I "live by the Spirit"? 
  3. How do John 16:5-15 (esp. 8-11) and 1 John 3:4-9 relate to living by and in the Spirit? What roles do my conscience and conviction play when doing an inventory?

Mark 7:20-23

  1. What are the things that make me unclean? Which of these items do I identify with the most? How do I get rid of them? How does Verse 18b relate to my tendency to blame shift? 
  2. If I have a change of heart, will sin be eliminated from my life? Why or why not?

1 John 1:8 (Proverbs 20:9)

  1. Why would I claim to be without sin? Have I ever done this by minimizing, justifying, or rationalizing my sin? Is this the same as saying I have no sin when I do these things? 
  2. Is it still possible as a Christian to deceive myself? (cf James 1:22) If so, how do I avoid doing it?

<<Continue on to Principle 4 Intro to Inventory>>


This principle is available in its entirety by contacting Chris Johnson at Pure Word Ministries for permission to use and order information.


 

Copyright © 2004, 2008 Randall Nurmi 
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