Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Covenant Health Assessment

I have shared this “Covenant Health Assessment” the last month or so with various audiences: two Camp Meetings and two of my churches. Please take a few minutes to go over it, keeping in mind that this is a “work in progress” and not scientific. If you have any disagreements over the answers, or on how I can word some of the questions more clearly, please let me know. Also, if you’d like to know why I have chosen the answer to be what it is, you can listen to my Northern New England Camp Meeting presentation that addresses this subject. Click here.


1. When it comes to salvation, justification is God’s part and sanctification is:

a. My part

b. God’s part

c. Both

2. I feel it is important to return tithes and offerings because:

a. I want God to continue to bless me with temporal blessings

b. I am appreciative to God for what He has done for me

c. Both

3. I want to go to heaven for:

a. My sake

b. Christ’s sake

c. Both

4. When I am sick and in the hospital, I feel:

a. That unless my pastor visits me, I have not really received spiritual care

b. Happy just to have anyone from my church visit me

5. When I get into a fight/disagreement with someone else, I usually:

a. Wait for the other person to apologize/attempt to reconcile first

b. Try to initiate reconciliation, regardless of who is really in the wrong

6. When I miss my morning devotions with the Lord, I feel:

a. Disappointed

b. Guilty

7. When my pastor misses a Board Meeting, I feel:

a. As though there are plenty of others in the church who are able to fill the void

b. He is not doing his job

8. When I am in a room with people and I see someone I know, I usually:

a. Try to initiate a conversation with him/her

b. Wait for him/her to initiate a conversation

9. When a fellow church member is living in open sin, I:

a. Feel like we have a responsibility to redemptively appeal to the person to bring his/her life into harmony with God and, if necessary, use church discipline

b. Recognize that we are all sinners and thus do not feel like it is our place to judge him/her

c. Encourage others to simply pray for him/her

10. When I recognize there is a sin or bad habit in my life that God has convicted me of, I:

a. Believe that Christ has already won the victory over that sin at the cross and claim His victory as my victory

b. Try my hardest to overcome my defects of character

c. Both

11. I believe:

a. No one can completely overcome sinning this side of heaven

b. God’s grace can keep us from ever stumbling again

12. When it comes to doctrine, I believe:

a. It is not so much important as to what one believes, but how he/she lives

b. What one believes invariably informs how he/she lives

13. A young man really wants to get baptized but he has a smoking addiction. He has overcome many other bad habits but no matter what he does, he cannot stop smoking. You would:

a. Baptize him anyway because smoking is a hard addiction to kick, and to delay his baptism may discourage him

b. Explain to Him that Christ has already gained victory for Him, and baptism is a reflection of the fact that He has experientially received that victory

c. Tell him that he cannot be baptized until he stops smoking

14. God expects me to:

a. Make promises to Him

b. Believe His promises to me

c. Both

15. A person says that obedience does not have to be a part of the Christian’s experience. That person is living under:

a. The New Covenant

b. The Old Covenant

Answers: For numbers 1-5, if you answered B, you get 2 points. If you answered A or C you get 0 points

For numbers 6-10, if you answered A you get 2 points. If you answered B or C you get 0 points

For numbers 11-15, if you answered B you get 2 points. If you answered A or C you get 0 points

Add all the points up: Highest possible is 30. Lowest possible is 0.

Here’s the bad news: this is a pass/fail test.

Either you got 30 points and passed.

Or you got anything less than 30 points and failed.

And I would imagine that very few get a perfect 30. If you did, you are ready for translation!

But this is the goal of God’s everlasting covenant-commitment: He is trying to completely expunge us of any and all old covenant thinking and behavior.


Anonymous said...

Likewise a quiz for you:

3 questions pass or fail :)

I'll make it true or false just so that it's much easier:

1) God calls me to encourage, correct and reproof by pointing to the character of Christ, and the example that He sets for us to follow.

2) God calls it upon me to give evaluation of who is ready or not by means of 20th century statistics and personality profiling devices.

3) God will translate those who did not get 30 points on your quiz.

I'll let you score it yourself :)

Renee Hernandez said...

I am sorry that you are a pastor..& ashamed that you are going around giving this "test". But there are many like you in this church harsh,judgmental, thinking themselves better then others...very sad.

Shawn Brace said...

Anonymous and Renee: I am deeply sorry that this comes across to you as judgmental and harsh. That is not my intention. Neither do I think that I am better than anyone! In fact, I come nowhere close to getting a "perfect" 30 myself. This is simply designed to help us understand where we are in our theological understanding and practical application of that understanding. And it is simply one person's views on assessing our spiritual thinking.

Again, I apologize for the confusion.

Dingo said...

Great tool for provoking thought about the gospel and how we perceive it, live it, and relate it to others. It must have sparked a lot of thoughtful discussions when it was presented. I found myself thinking a lot about why I answered the way I did on several questions even before reading the answers.
Can see where people might misinterpret its motive though. It might be good to present it more clearly as a tool rather than an arbitrary statement on how sanctified people are.
I would like to receive a little more clarification on #15 as I have always associated old covenant with works done for the wrong reason - duty/reward instead of Christ working in us/love/gratitude.
Anyway, glad you are posting again. God bless

practic said...

Shawn, I find nothing wrong with your quiz. It promotes self-examination in the light of the character of Christ...that's part of following Him. When that simple exercise causes my heart to be stirred up, then for sure I may know that there is some hidden self-justification or self-love seeking to protect itself. Cain will always be offended at Abel's pure offering. The offense of the cross has not ceased.

Shawn Brace said...

Thanks for the positive feedback, Practic.

John said...

After reading your blog on Agape, for me personally, believe your motive was of good intention and actually thought the test was extremely encouraging and agape driven. Oh, how our church needs the message of Christ crucified! Am glad that Fred from CA turned me on to this site. My wife and I will become regulars to the site. May God continue to bless your ministry, which I believe is the "most precious message." Blessings to you and the family (and all the church families) in Christ Jesus,

john from Fresno-- P.S. already, just today, listened to a couple of sermons also, they were as refreshing as the sea breeze and as powerful as the ocean waves.