under a special agreement with
presents "New Life in Christ" Course 3
under a special agreement with
"Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature…" (2 Corinthians 5:17)
Welcome to Course 3 of The Mailbox Club
THIS IS A THRILLING COURSE! In it we'll find the answers to the most important questions in life:
Why am I here?
Where am I going?
How can I become a Child of God?
How can I live the Christian Life?
We are not going to study man's ideas about these great questions, but we will find the answers in the Bible, the most wonderful Book ever written.
The Bible is a revelation.
The word "revelation" means an unveiling. In the Bible God has removed the veil from many questions. He has told us secrets concerning creation, life, death, and life after death—things that we could never know if God had not chosen to tell us about them.
The Bible is the story of man's complete ruin in sin and God's perfect salvation in Christ. You should memorize these ten words. As you study the Bible, you will find that everything in the Bible is related to one or the other of these two phrases.
The Bible is different…
…from any other book ever written because it was inspired of God. The Bible says, "All Scripture is given by inspiration of God…"
God Himself is the true Author of the Bible, although He used many men to write it. God told these men what to write and even the words to use. The Bible says,
"For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. " 2 Peter 1:21
"All Scripture is given by inspiration of God…" 2 Timothy 3:16
Now you are ready to begin the lesson.
First, we are going to see how the earth and the universe came into being. We will see why God alone should be worshipped by all creatures.
Then we will study the origin of Satan. We will see what he is doing now and how we can avoid being deceived by him.
Next, we will see how man was created, and why God created him.
Then we'll learn why…
…it is so important to know about God's first man, Adam. We'll see that when Adam disobeyed God, he brought sin and death into the world. We'll see how Adam's sin affected the whole human race. This will help us to understand why we are like we are and why we need to have new life in Christ.
We will learn how…
…to become a child of God through the new birth. We will see what it means to be IN CHRIST. We will find how we can have victory over the three great enemies of the Christian—the world, the flesh, and the devil. We'll learn what it means to have NEW LIFE in Christ!
We have included three new features in Course 3 to help you to know your Bible better and, more important, to know the Lord Jesus better.
1. A SCRIPTURE READING is at the beginning of each lesson. Find it in your Bible and read it before you fill in the answer page. We suggest that you read the lesson first, then the Scripture reading in your Bible. Finally, reread the lesson before starting on the answer page.
2. A KEY VERSE is given for each lesson. Memorize this key verse.
3. DEFINITIONS are included in some lessons to help you with difficult or unfamiliar words. When you come across a word which you do not understand, look in the definitions section. If it is not there, look it up in your dictionary. This will help you to understand the lesson better.
Now you are ready to begin Lesson 1 of Course 3.
"By the word of the LORD were the heavens made…" (Psalm 33:6)
Have you ever wondered why the first book in the Bible is called Genesis? Well, the word "genesis" means "beginning," and the book of Genesis is the story of beginnings. It tells us of the beginning of the universe, the beginning of the earth, and the beginning of the human race. However, the book of Genesis does not tell us about the beginning of God. The reason for this is that God had no beginning.
GOD has always existed!
God existed in all His power and glory before a single thing in the universe was created. The Bible says, "In the beginning God…" Before the beginning of anything God was there. How long has God existed? He has always existed. How long will God continue to exist? He will always exist. The Bible says,
"…from everlasting to everlasting, You are God." Psalm 90:2
The creation of the universe
We live in a fantastic universe. Our sun is so large that it could contain a million worlds the size of our earth. And there are stars in space so large that they could easily hold 500 million suns the size of ours. The giant star, Antares, is said to be so large that if it were a hollow ball and the sun and earth were put inside it, the earth could continue its orbit around the sun and never come even halfway to the outer edge of Antares!
So precise is the clockwork of the heavens that we can foretell an eclipse or the visit of a comet years in advance. And we can know with mathematical precision the position of any given star at any moment of time.
Such order and precision are not the products of chance. There had to be some incredible power to bring such stars into being, and there has to be an incredible power to control them.
How did the universe come into being? God created it! Although many ideas have been presented as to how the universe came into being, no one really knows except God. He is the only one who can tell us about it.
The Bible begins with the majestic statement:
"In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth." Genesis 1:1
This verse reveals God as the Creator of the heavens and the earth at some unknown time in the past.
How did God create the heavens and the earth? He created them by His word! The Bible says,
"By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of His mouth." Psalm 93:11
God's word is powerful! God's word is also creative, that is, it brings into being that which it commands. The Bible says,
"For He spake, and it was done; He commanded, and it stood fast." Psalm 33:9
God spoke and the heavenly bodies came into being. He commanded, and they stood fast in the paths which He planned for them.
Not only did God create all things, but He also controls them by His mighty power. The Bible says that He upholds all things "by the word of His power."
How do we know these things? We know them by faith in God's word. The Bible says,
"Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God…" Hebrews 11:3
The account of creation given to us in the Bible is brief, yet God has told us everything we need to know about the beginning of the universe.
The creation of the earth
No one knows when the earth was created. God has not revealed this to us. Genesis 1:1 simply says,
"In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth."
We do not know what the earth was like at this time, but everything in this verse points to God's power, His wisdom and His perfection. The Bible says, "the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God (the angels) shouted for joy" when God created the earth. (See Job 38:4-7)
In Genesis 1:2 there is a different scene. The Bible says, "And the earth was (or became) without form and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep." For some reason, in some way, and at some time, the earth became formless and empty. How long the earth may have remained in this condition we do not know. But over this dark scene the Spirit of God brooded. Then God spoke.
God said, "Let there be light," and instantly there was light. God divided the light from the darkness. He called the light "day," and He called the darkness "night." The Bible says,
"And the evening and the morning were the first day."
On the second day God formed the sky and the clouds, which the Bible calls "the firmament." The water in the clouds was separated from the water upon the earth. The Bible says,
"And the evening and the morning were the second day."
On the third day, God separated the waters from the land. He called the dry land "earth," and He called the waters "the seas." God caused the earth to bring forth grass and herbs and fruit trees. The Bible says,
"And the evening and the morning were the third day."
On the fourth day, God made the sun and the moon to give light upon the earth by day and by night and to produce the different seasons. The Bible says,
"And the evening and the morning were the fourth day."
On the fifth day, God created the fish and the birds. God said, "Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and the fowl that may fly above the earth." The Bible says,
"And the evening and the morning were the fifth day."
On the sixth day, God created all the animals and reptiles of the earth. Last of all, He created man. The Bible says,
"And God saw everything that He had made, and behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day." Genesis 1:31
The creation of man
God's most wonderful creation was man, because God created man in His own image and after His own likeness. God said,
"Let us make man in our image, after our likeness…" Genesis 1:26
God named the first man Adam. God created a wife for Adam, and her name was Eve. Adam and Eve did not come up from lower forms of animal life by a process of evolution. They were created by God, and they were created in the image of God. The Bible says,
"God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them." Genesis 1:27
God was pleased with all that He had created, and He pronounced it "VERY GOOD."
God the Creator—worthy of all worship
We have learned many important truths in this lesson, but the most important one is this: God is the Creator of all things. The universe, the earth, and the living creatures did not come into being by themselves. God created them! In Isaiah 45:12, God says,
"I have made the earth, and created man upon it: I, even My hands, have stretched out the heavens, and all their host have I commanded."
Since God created all things, then to whom do all things belong? They belong to God! All things belong to the One Who created them.
Why did God create all things? He created them for His glory. In the creation of the universe, the earth and all living creatures, God has manifested His power, His glory, and His wisdom. The Bible says,
"The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows His handiwork." Psalm 19:1
Because God is the Creator of all things, He alone is the One who should receive all worship. What is worship? Worship is the love, reverence, and obedience which are due God. We should never worship any man, angel, creature, or object. The Bible says,
"You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only shall you serve." Matthew 4:10
Why should God alone be worshipped? Because He is the Creator and because He alone is worthy of all worship. The Bible says,
"You are worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for You have created all things, and for Your pleasure they are and were created." Revelation 4:11