11 BSF Matthew Week 11

11.02 BSF Matthew Week 11, Day 2

Today’s Scriptures

My Daily Journal:

I think the harvest field is such a beautiful and fitting image of the calling of Christians.  When we plant crops, we turn them over to God.  He is the only one who can make something grow.  To take it from a seed to a plant producing fruit and seeds.  He provides the soil.  He provides the nutrients.  He provides the rain and sunshine.  There is work to be done, including the work of bringing in the harvest, but, as we learn this week, He even provides for that.  He doesn’t say go and hire people or go and beg people or go and threaten people or go and scare/guilt people into the work.  He says to pray and God will provide.

We often forget this and begin to think we (you and I) need to get busy making plans and recruiting.  We need to get out there and polish our sales pitch.  God does call us to get out of our “holy huddle”, but it also makes it abundantly clear that the workers, the work, the power, the authority and even the harvest all are from and for Him alone.  Anything we allow ourselves to be tricked into thinking comes from our own power is an insult to the One from whom the true power and authority belongs.

My Answers:

3.
a.
It is His nature.  They were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd

b.
Ps: The Lord is my shepherd
Is: We all like sheep (Lord laid on Him the iniquity of all) He bore our sins
Je: lost sheep, scattered flock, led astray by shepherds, wandering
Ez: cared for self rather than flock, I am against the shepherds and will hold them accountable
Jo: I am the good shepherd, not a hired hand

c.
Those in churches which do not follow scripture, everyone believe what they want, not the truth of God

4.
a.
Ask the Lord of the harvest to send out workers

b.
authority to drive out impure spirits and to heal every disease and sickness

c.
Authority of truth of His word.  Power:  the hope, the riches, His incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead (Eph 1)

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BSF Acts Study 2011-2012, BSF Acts Week 13, Lectures

Bible Lesson 14: Hebrews 11-13 Lecture

Scripture: Hebrews 11-13

Aim: CATL faith is essential in God’s family

Introduction: Last week we learned about covenants, the old and new, our need for a priest and how Christ serves as our permanent high priest interceding on our behalf with the Father.  We learned that a covenant is made between two or more people, like God and mankind.  This week we learn about faith.  What is really interesting is that faith is a form of covenant.  Faith is the foundation of our relationship with God and the demonstration of His relationship with us.

1st division: Hebrews 11: 1-16 Biblical characters model faith.

Principle: Faithful followers stand as pillars to build on

Illustration: Every home land has culture, norms, traditions, laws and practices.  (Talk briefly about some different cultures, driving on different sides of the road, etc.)

Application: Have you justified something based on comparison to your neighbors?  If so, is that comparison to your current neighbors or the ones who will be down the block from you in heaven, like Abel, Enoch, Noah and Abraham?  Are you conforming to earthly culture or do you look forward to your heavenly  home?

2nd division: Hebrews 11:17-12:29 Faith is like a muscle – it needs work to remain strong

Principle: God provides work and challenge to strengthen our faith

Illustration:  I have an issue with my elbow.  The range of motion is restricted and I’m going to a physical therapist to help me.  She is having me do some challenging and painful exercises, stretching and building back the motion in my joint.  I don’t enjoy it, but I understand it is necessary.  God works the same way in our lives.  If we weren’t tested, if we didn’t face resistance we would grow weak.

Application: Are you actively participating in God’s exercise and training plan for you?  Do you seek out God’s spiritual therapy or do you try to avoid it?  What are you doing that is outside of your comfort zone?

3rd division: Hebrews 13 True faith is demonstrated not just discussed

Principle: Faith is the character of a christian

Illustration: There was a man in a small town who was “the bravest man in town”.  He wore a t-shirt with that slogan on it.  He had a sign in his yard.  It was on his business cards.  He rode on the back of a convertible in the annual parade.  Then one day some robbers came to town and the man was found hiding behind a group of children.  Faith is the same way – the true nature is evident in our actions in difficult times, not in how much we talk about it in easy times.

Application:  Are you a hypocrite or poser?  Do you live one life at church and a different life at school or work?  Do you wear your faith on your sleeve, chest, around your neck, on the back of your car or is it something people clearly see in times of trouble and need?

Conclusion: Chapter 13 sums it all up – what it means to be part of God’s family:  It starts with love, ends with grace and at the center of it all is the sacrifice Christ made for me so I can be his brother.

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BSF Acts Study 2011-2012, BSF Acts Week 10, Lectures

Bible Lesson 11: Hebrews 2:5-4:13 Lecture

Hebrews 2:5-4:13

Aim: Jesus became man to rescue mankind

Introduction: Picture a family run campground, run by a Father and Son team.  Now the son, who helped build the campground would have every right to sit in His office and send out memos to the counselors and campers.  But He knows that to really train the counselors, it would be best if He didn’t just tell them, but showed them.  Jesus did exactly that, and so much more.  Last week we learned about how Jesus was above all, higher than the angels, King, creator, sustainer of all things, an exact representation of God.  And this week we learn how He became fully man, not only to teach us – but to save us.

Division 1: Hebrews 2:5-18: Jesus became lower than angels to sit down as king

Principle a: Jesus suffered death to give us life

Illustration: Several years ago I went camping with my son and we slept in the old canvas army tents.  Besides the fact that they smelled bad and had spiders, it rained that first night.   Now, I know you aren’t supposed to touch a canvas tent in the rain, but, it was just too tempting.  Sometimes it was just accidental, brushing against it trying to get out of the way of the times before when I touched it to see what would happen, but soon we had water pouring in.

While we may live in a stinky old tent that we got from our parents who got it from their parents (i.e., our sinful bodies), Jesus offers us a gift of a brand new tent to live with Him.

Application: what are you doing that you know you shouldn’t?  Are you holding onto your stinky old ways or do you accept the gift?  Are the rains falling in your life now (if not, they will) – what shape is your tent in?

Principle b: God didn’t lower the bar, Jesus lifted us up on His shoulders

Illustration: I’m not perfect.  No one is perfect.  Have you ever said that?  I have.  But it is wrong – Jesus was perfect while fully a man.  The only way to stand in the presence of God is to be completely without sin – otherwise you would be undone by the conviction of your sin.  We don’t get into God’s presence by being better than others, we get there by being perfect – God didn’t lower that requirement – he didn’t lower the bar – but he did raise the floor by allowing us to stand on the one who was without sin and step over the bar without any work of our own.

Application: Are you trying to be good to be better than others or to obey God?  What are you trying to earn that has been given as a gift?  Do you recognize the perfect son of man?

Division 2: Hebrews 3:1 – 4:11 Jesus/Moses – faithful servants, but Jesus is supreme

Principle: Faith and obedience have always been the requirements to enjoy God’s promised rest

Illustration: One of the things to watch for when camping is where you pitch your tent.  It is tempting to pitch it down next to a river.  Water and food are handy, its comfortable, sure there are the mosquitoes and bugs, but such is life, right?.  But when rains come it is important to be on higher ground.  God brought his people out  of the slavery of Egypt, but they refused to move their tents – they fought him, they ignored him, they disobeyed.  His desire for them was that they would heed his warning , they were creating their own storm of disobedience and they were not safe – but they refused.  As a result, they died, drowning forever in their own stubbornness.  We are warned to listen and not be deceived by sin, to put our obedience in God and do not follow the example the Jews did with Moses.

Application: The storms of life and temptation are coming – are you listening to the warnings or fighting them?  Do you learn from the stories in the bible or relive them?  What part of your life do you need to submit to obedience to God?

Division 3: Hebrews: 4:12-13 The word of God is alive and active, cutting, judging and saving

(These 2 verses are the memory verses for the kids this week and one we would all be wise to commit to memory!)

The word of God is alive (not history, not dead, not just words – it has life)

The word of God is active – not passive, not waiting, not absent – active

The word of God cuts ( I sure felt this one throughout this week’s study – meditating on the living word, encouraging others every day, honoring the sabbath day of rest, living like someone given new life, obeying)

He is the judge – there will be an account taken for the time I am given on this earth

There is nothing hidden, period.  If that doesn’t strike fear into you, then you are truly in denial – imagine every action, thought, glance, deception, lie you every made, exposed for all to see.

And, most amazing of all – through all of those facts – Jesus became like me to die for me to pay the price to save me from the very judgment that I deserve.  When you think about it, it makes no logical sense – why would the creator of everything, knowing everything do this for me?  There are only two things to say:

1. John 3:16 answers that question in one of the only places in the bible that it gives us a “why” in regard to God’s behavior – “for God so loved the world” – it was love

2. The only thing that could possibly make less logical sense than what God did would be to reject the gift that He has provided – to reject His love rather than sharing it back to Him and to others.

Luke 8:18 says “Whoever has will be given more; whoever does not have, even what he thinks he has will be taken from him.” When we think about our response to God’s love we can see how this becomes not only understandable, but the only thing fair and true.  Fill your hearts with God’s love and share it, protect it, cherish it, encourage others, grow in closeness with Him and He will pour out more and more love to you.  But if you take the love of God only for your own gain, complaining, disobeying, continuing to sin, trying to use God and His church only to better your own life, then that life that you think you have will not last – nothing is hidden, not even our hearts.

Conclusion:

I find it interesting that the Apostle Paul was a tent maker.

The storms are coming – how about a new tent?  If anyone’s in Christ, he is a new creation.  While you are at it, why don’t you just go ahead and pitch your tent right inside God’s house?

Division 1: Hebrews 2: 10-18: Jesus became man to raise us up to be his brothers

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