There is no doubt that the lifestyle of a Christian either draws or repels individuals concerning the Person of Jesus Christ.  Those among whom we live and work, by necessity, will see and be affected by the decisions and actions of believers.  Therefore it is imperative that clarity concerning godly living exists in the understanding of those who carry the name Christian.  Scripture reveals numerous mandates in regards to living one’s life.  In the Old Testament, restrictions were placed on diet, clothing, work and worship.  In the Church Age, those prohibitions to Israel are not applicable.  For example, Peter was reminded … "do not call anything impure that God has made clean" (Acts 10:15 NIV). To the woman at the well, Jesus said … “but an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers shall worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers.  God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth" (John 4:23-24 NASB). The ritual sacrifices would cease for Christ had fulfilled all aspects of the Law and Paul stated that to the Christians in Rome …  “Christ is the end of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes” (Rom. 10:4 NIV). Since believers in the Church Age possess a freedom that differed from Israel, Jesus said to those who believed on Him … “so if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed” (John 8:36 NIV).  With that freedom came the responsibility to live a life in such a way that Christ would be represented before an unbelieving world.  This new way of living -- the Christ life, would require being in fellowship with the Spirit of God and knowledge of the Word. It is not surprising then that the apostles, particularly Paul and Peter devote considerable writing to instructing and developing a lifestyle that honors the Savior.  Thousands upon thousands had placed their faith in the fact that Christ died for their sins, was buried and risen again all in accordance with Scripture.  Now the time had come to live out before others that which was believed by faith.  The Apostle Peter in writing to Christians scattered throughout the Roman Empire due to increased persecution said … “Beloved, I urge you as aliens and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts, which wage war against the soul. Keep your behavior excellent among the Gentiles, so that in the thing in which they slander you as evildoers, they may on account of your good deeds, as they observe them, glorify God in the day of visitation” (1 Peter 2:11-12 NASB). Note that Peter is not reprimanding these Christians, for he calls them “beloved” -- beloved of the Father as is the Beloved of the Father, Jesus Christ (Luke 3:22).  These Christians are in union with Christ, an eternal position, and share in all that the Father provided for the Son to glorify Him while He was on earth. Just as the time of the Son was short-lived on earth, so the believer in Christ is identified as an “alien and stranger.”  As an alien, he resides in a given locale, but in the spiritual realm, he is a citizen of heaven … “For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ” (Phil. 3:20 NASB).  This state of being an alien is marked by the hatred of Satan’s world system against those who claim the name of Christ.  Jesus said ... “If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you.  If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.  Remember the word that I said to you, 'A slave is not greater than his master.' If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you; if they kept My word, they will keep yours also” (John 15:18-20 NASB).  Furthermore Christians are strangers in the world, but not of this world.  They are to possess values that conform to Scripture and function in life differently than the unbelieving world.  Paul will conclude his admonitions to the churches in Philippi on godly living with these words … “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, let your mind dwell on these things” (Phil. 4:8 NASB).

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