Leaving a false faith system behind is hard - especially if it's all you knew. Now you are a new Christian and you have to separate one system of beliefs from another. #Christianity #Theology #Bible

Leaving a false faith system behind is hard – especially if it’s all you knew. Now you are a new Christian and you have to separate one system of beliefs from another.

Everyone you know might be still in the system, too. And to top it all off you’re really excited about what you’ve discovered and want to share it with everybody!

Not so fast. There are some things you need to work on first.

Transitioning is like moving to a country where you don’t speak the language

You have to learn a new language, new customs. It’s kind of like being an immigrant to a new country. 

When I was a new Christian, I struggled with separating the false Mormon doctrine I had been taught my whole life (and thought was the truth!) from what was actually true.

At the same time, I was learning an entirely new belief system and a new culture.  It’s a lot to take in all at once!

Transitioning to Christianity is like moving to a new country Click To Tweet

8 things you can do to help yourself  separate false doctrine from Biblical Christianity

I brainstormed with some friends of mine from various non-Christian backgrounds to come up with a list of things we each have found the most helpful in our transitions into Biblical Christianity.

The best thing about these suggestions is that they apply to anyone, from any background. Even if you have been a Cradle Christian these suggestions apply to you, too!

Get yourself into a Bible-based church

All of the ladies agreed that this is extremely important. We know it can be scary to step foot into a Protestant/Evangelical church for the first time. Things are going to seem weird and crazy, at first. But trust us on this. You need to do it. 

What do we mean by a “Bible-based church”? After all – wasn’t the church you were in Bible-based? The honest answer to that is…probably not.

Here’s what we mean by Bible-based:

Christian churches teach the Bible. They should not teach anything that is not supported by the Bible. (That’s according to the Bible!) So, find a church that teaches the Bible, and only the Bible.

The best type of teaching for those coming out of a false belief system (and all Christians, in my opinion) is expository teaching. Expository teaching is a style of Bible teaching that is done book-by-book, chapter-by-chapter, verse-by-verse. It is done over an extended period of time. Churches can take a year or more to get through just one book of the Bible!

Now the hard part – finding a church that is Bible-based and that you can be comfortable in.

The best way is to ask around to other Christians you may know. Social media has been a wonderful avenue for those of us who have come out of other systems. We can connect with other people just like us from all over the world. Friendships are formed and churches are found.

If you would like to get connected, you can private message me through my Facebook page or DM me on Twitter and I will help guide you to some good groups.

Get a strong Christian mentor

One of my friends said that this was instrumental in helping her transition and replace false teachings, and I agree. I formed fast friendships with a couple of women at the church I attended when I was new and it was essential to my spiritual growth to have safe people I could ask questions of and talk to.

The best place to find Christian women to connect with and develop that spiritual mentor relationship with is going to be at a church, so this is why finding a Bible-based church is crucial. 

Stop reading false “Scriptures”

Another helpful piece of advice was to stop reading false scriptures. This one can be tough, especially if you have loved ones who are still in the old system, but it is necessary for you.

Your transition will be more difficult and is tougher to see the differences between the two belief systems and their doctrines if you are still filling your mind with it. So stop.

We know you will be pressured by well-intentioned people who love you to read them to get “your testimony back”, but now is not the time. Once you have a better understanding of Biblical Christianity, you can go back to reading them and use that deepen your understanding of the differences. 

Interact with the world around you outside of your old culture

I think this is one of the best ideas the ladies came up with! The cultures of false belief systems tend to be highly controlled and insulated from the rest of the world. Biblical Christianity is the opposite. We are to live in the world and engage the world.

Develop friendships with other people. Talk to people from different backgrounds. Ask them what they believe and why they believe it. Read books. Experience life. 

Be willing to be corrected

It is hard to humble ourselves, to admit we don’t know everything. (At least it was for me)! 

When you are struggling to understand the differences between your old system and Biblical Christian doctrines, ask questions. Listen to the answers. Compare the answers to what the Bible says. Think about the answers. Don’t immediately blow the answers off if they do not agree with your preconceived ideas of what you think the answers are.

This is also where having a solid woman Christian friend comes in and can be a huge help to you. You know they care about you and are willing to help you. They are investing their time and energy into you. Listen to what they have to say. 

Learn the differences between the similar terms in both belief systems

Many terms used in false belief systems and Biblical Christianity are the same words with different meanings. Don’t assume you know what a word means simply because you know how it was used in the old system.

Look words up in the Bible. When you are reading the Bible and you read a word that you think you know what it means, stop. Go look the word up in a lexicon. My favorite tool to use is Biblehub.com. You can look up any verse, click on the lexicon and look up the defintion of any word. 

After reading every defintion for a word, I like to do a word study. I’ll go back to the verse in question and re-read the verse or passage in its context, substituting the biblical meaning when I come to the word.

Then, I will read every verse where that word appears, so that I get more full, complete understanding of the meaning of that word.

Doing this is not fast, but it is the best way to swap out our old definitions for the correct ones. Try it with grace and justification. 

Read the Bible

Learning the differences in defintions between false belief systems and Christian doctrine by doing word studies leads us to the most important thing you can do to transform your mind: Read your Bible.

There are many different types of Bibles to read. There are many different ways to read and study your Bible. Some are more time and labor intensive than others. But read it you must!

At first I recommend just reading it. Read it like the story that it is. Take the time to spend an hour a day reading. Follow a daily reading plan if you like. YouVersion Bible app has tons. (You can also send me a friend request on the app.)

If you’re not sure where to begin, start at the beginning. In fact, I urge everyone to start from the beginning. As you read through you will begin to notice patterns. 

Not sure which Bible version you should be reading? I’ve got ideas to help you with that, too. 

Reader’s Version Bibles are regular Bibles but do not have chapters, verses or subheadings. The lack of intrusions into the text helps the reader process the words better and makes for faster reading with greater comprehension.

Check out our article on the Reader’s Bible. I personally use the NASB Reader’s Bible and love it.

Get new reference materials

Our last piece of advice flows from the previous 2 pieces. While you are picking up a new Bible, you are going to need new reference materials as well. It was so interesting to find out what reference materials have helped my friends!

Rose Book of Bible Charts, Maps, and Time Lines

This best-selling book contains charts, upgraded maps highlighting modern-day cities and countries, and up-to-date facts and statistics. It includes 216 reproducible pages of illustrations, charts, and maps on a variety of Bible topics, with two fold-outs of the genealogy of Jesus, a cutaway Tabernacle illustration and a Bible Time Line.

It has charts comparing Christianity to over 20 other world religions, gives you an overview of the history of how we got the Bible, and also has overviews of key topics in the Old and New Testamants.

Hebrew Word Study: A Hebrew Teacher’s Search for the Heart of God by Chaim Bentorah

One of my friends mentioned this book as being extremely helpful to her. I thought it was such an interesting answer I decided to include it here! Remeber earlier I mentioned word studies? 

There is a growing interest in the Christian community to study the Hebrew language. Many Christians have expressed a deep feeling that there is much more to the Old Testament than one experiences in a first reading. There is a growing hunger among Christians to study the biblical languages to gain this deeper insight. As a Christian who was raised in an evangelical Christian environment, I am convinced there are spiritual lessons in the Old Testament that we as Christians never experienced.

In this book, you will discover things about God and your relationship with him that you may never have considered. Perhaps you have considered such things but found no biblical reference to confirm it. Ultimately, what you will be discovering is God revealing His heart to you through the depths of His Word as shown through the ancient Hebrew

I have two suggestions for books I think are absolutely crucial for anyone coming out of a false believe to read, even if they are not a Christian. 

Toxic Faith: Experiencing Healing Over Painful Spiritual Abuse by Stephen Arterburn, Jack Felton

When religion becomes a means to avoid or control life, it becomes toxic. Those who possess a toxic faith have stepped across the line from a balanced perspective of God to an unbalanced faith in a weak, powerless or uncaring God. They seek a God to fix every mess, prevent every hurt, and mend every conflict.

Toxic Faith distinguishes between a healthy faith and a misguided religiosity that traps believers in an addictive practice of religion. It shows how unbalanced ministries, misguided churches, and unscrupulous leaders can lead their followers away from God and into a desolate experience of definition that drives many to despair. Toxic Faith shows readers how to find hope for a return to genuine, healthy faith that can add meaning to life. In the words of the author, “I want to help you throw out that toxic faith and bring you back to the real thing.”

Boundaries: When to Say Yes, When to Say No, to Take Control of Your Life by Dr. Henry Cloud

For those of us who come out of false belief systems, we typically have never learned how to have or set healthy boundaries. And Biblical Christianity can be confusing on this, as well. 

This book has been amazing for me and many others I know.

In this Gold Medallion Award-winning books, Drs. Henry Cloud and John Townsend give you biblically based answers to these and other tough questions, and show you how to set healthy boundaries with your parents, spouses, children, friends, co-workers, and even yourself.

Summary

When you come out of a false belief system it can be hard to know what to do and what to believe. You have to learn a whole new set of beliefs, why you believe it and what is true. It’s a lot like moving to a foreign country where you have to learn a new language and new customs. There are steps you can take to help yourself, such as find a healthy church, reading the Bible, learning definitions for words, forming relationships and finding a mentor. 

The most important steps you can take are to read your Bible daily, and get yourself mentally, emotionally and spiritually healthy. The God os the Bible wants you to do those things and invites you into a relationship where you will have a sound mind and reason with Him. 

What Do You Think?

If you have come out of a false belief and into Biblical Christianity what things have you done to help yourself replace the old doctrine with the new? What was the one thing that was most helpful to you?

If you want to connect with other women with similar experiences of leaving false belief system, or are questioning the one you are in like and message this Facebook page to gain access to a private group just for women like us!

2 Comments

  1. Good job, Carrie!

    Another strategy– I wrote a book called After Mormonism, What? that was published by Baker. I used the worldview categories of James W Sire to allow a Christian to dialogue with someone just out of Mormonism without getting tripped up in shared words with different meanings. I used questions like, “What is the most real thing in existence?” and others. Currently rewriting the book with Lynn K. Wilder and would appreciate your prayers!

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