08.5 BSF Matthew Week 8, Day 5

Today’s Scriptures

My Daily Journal:

Stolen words used for unearned earthly gain.

The words of the bible are precious.  They are not just words, they have power, meaning and purpose.  But when people use these words in a twisted fashion, they don’t just deceive, they are thieves.

If I take a tool from my neighbors garage, I am a thief.  If I take credit for artwork I did not create, I am a thief.  If I take the Words of God and use them for my glory instead of His, I am a thief.

We may deceive ourselves into justifying our theft.  We may think that watering down the scripture is a means to get people in the door.  We may think that it is better to avoid the “controversial” parts of the gospel.  But what does Jesus say?  There is never a time that Jesus does not reflect the glory of God alone.  His food was the do the will of Him who sent Him and to finish His work.

What do you stand on?  Is it what you want to be true?  Is it what you would like the bible to say?  Or do you stand on the one and only solid foundation.

Actually, standing is not enough.  We are not just called to stand on the cornerstone, we are called to be built on it, as it says in 1 Peter, into a holy house of worship to the Living God.

My Answers:

11.
a.
Matt: Jesus knowing them (not His sheep)
Luke: do not do what Jesus says
John: refuse to come to Christ, do not have the love of God in heart, do not accept Christ
John: Belief in the Father
Hosea: rejected what is good, set up own kingship aside from God, made idols

b.
The words that came out of their mouth were lies and for show.  The words did not reflect submission to the rule of God or a contrite spirit, they were stolen words used for illegal earthly gain, which does not carry into heaven

c.
I am, myself, at times.  When I rely on myself and not the H/S, I lie to myself.  When I pray afterwards instead of before, I am being my own prince, When I put trust in men who look the part and sound good instead of the word of God, I live a lie.

12.
That He alone is the Judge on Judgment Day.  No one enters except by His knowledge.  He alone is Lord.

13.
a.
Hear the words of the Lord AND put them into practice

b.
They don’t practice their faith (if they have any at all).  They put it in a box (Sunday morning) or on a shelf (unread bible) and go about living their life with what they think is right or what they want right to be.

c.
Isaiah: Lay a stone in Zion, tested stone, precious cornerstone, rely on it never stricken w/ panic
1 Cor: No one can lay any other foundation: Jesus Christ
1 Peter: Living stone, rejected by humans chosen by God, we on Him a spiritual house, holy priesthood

d.
On Christ the solid rock I stand all other ground is sinking sand

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08.4 BSF Matthew Week 8, Day 4

Today’s Scriptures

My Daily Journal:

Hero Worship:  It amazes me how people follow and worship other people.  They have a NASCAR driver they follow.  They can tell the stats of each player on their favorite team.  They invest time watching and discussing singers and actors, turning them into American Idols.

But if these “heroes” do not stand for God, then they are tricks and lies.  If they lead others into temptation, then they are counterfeit heroes.  They are not the real deal.  They are counterfeit.  They are also not just misguided.  If they oppose the one true God, seeking praise for themselves over God, then they are to be avoided.  Deliver us from evil.

My Answers:

9.
a.
13-14: Narrow vs wide gate/broad road.  Narrow to life, wide to destruction
15 False prophets (sheep/wolves) 16 (fruit: grape from thornbush, fig from thistles) 17-18 (tree bearing fruit)

b.
good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.

10.
a.
Do not trust outward appearances, particularly in regard to teachers of faith.  They may “look the part”, but they are a shell containing viciousness

b.
They are not “misguided” they are wicked.  False teaching of the gospel and thus, opposing God, is ranked among worse offenses.  They may have Reverend as a title but that does not mean they are to be revered.  Christ had no issue calling the highest church leaders a brood of vipers.

c.
1. Beware – trickery abounds and what looks good and easy is seldom right
2. Make sure my life and ministry is bearing good fruit from the Spirit within me.  Trust it and the Word of God alone, not my desire for what I want it to say instead.  Guard my heart from evil and watch my words, they cannot be taken back.

08.3 BSF Matthew Week 8, Day 3

Today’s Scriptures

My Daily Journal:

My wife gets some friendly teasing from her group for her passion for getting deep into God’s word and looking up the Greek behind our English biblical words.  She jokingly said this morning that she looked up the word “knock” in Greek and it means to “knock, as on a door.”

While she said this tongue in cheek, it is actually a very relevant point.

Lots of people ask.  They scream out in their words and actions.  Some people seek.  They look for answers.  They look for help.  But knocking – that is something different.

You can ask from afar and anonymously.  You can seek answers from unreliable sources.  We have a neighbor who asks her deepest questions to Google search like some sort of magic eight ball to give guidance to her life.

But knocking requires personal action and personal involvement.  To knock in prayer, you have to show up on God’s doorstep.  You have to know the right house, the right door.  You must spiritually get up and carry your prayers to Him.  You have to extend your hand.  You have to take action, engage directly and personally.

God does not just want our requests and wishes, He wants our connection with Him.  He doesn’t want us to just phone it in, He wants us to enter His home.

My Answers:

6.
a.
Ask, Seek, Knock

b.
Yes, sick child, guidance for another child, restful sleep for spouse

7.
The promise of the Holy Spirit.  Good gifts could mean any blessing, but the H/S is the ultimate gift and blessing

8.
a.
The ultimate answer to prayer (according to God’s will) is salvation and reconciliation.  He purchased that gift for us while we were still sinner (Rom 5:8), but we still must choose to accept the gift and submit to Him

b.
God is not a vending machine that you insert prayer and out pops blessings or your get your own way.  God does what is in His will and His mercy out of love.  All prayer is heard and answered, some not as we wish for teaching/change

c.
It fits unselfish love.  God has nothing to gain through prayer, but through His love of us He delights in giving

08.2 BSF Matthew Week 8, Day 2

Today’s Scriptures

My Daily Journal:

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Flickr Creative Commons: stockmonkeys.com

1. Measure for Measure:  This reminded me of the days of the gold rush.  Miners would pan for gold and, hopefully, find nuggets.  They would then bring these in to town where someone would purchase them.,  The price was based on weight and the purchaser of the nuggets owned the scale.  It was often a simple balance and they used counter weights to determine the weight of an ounce of gold.  If their counter weight was a bit heavy, say 1.5 ounce or 2 ounces instead of 1 ounce, then when they put the gold on the other end of the scale, they would get that much extra for the price they paid.  But Jesus explains that this manipulation is all for nothing, because the same set of weights, the measure, they use for others will be the same set of weights used to evaluate their worth.  In this situation the only thing that makes sense for fairness to abound is to use weights that are true and accurate.  The only source of that measure that is true is the Word of God.

2. I just finished reading a book called Allegiant, and one of the lines in the book really stuck in my mind in regard to our lesson this week.  “Everyone has some evil (sin/fault) inside of them and the first step to loving anyone else is to recognize the same evil (sin/fault) in ourselves, so we are able to forgive them.”  We have spent 4 weeks on the Sermon on the Mount and it is easy sometimes to compartmentalize the lesson of three weeks ago and this week, but they are all the same sermon.  In Matt 5, Jesus explained this principle in the extreme.  You may not have murdered someone else, but have you been angry or thought of another as being a fool?  If so, it is the same thing, the same sin, the same evil, with the same just punishment (the fires of hell 5:22).  To minister, to love, to forgive another; we cannot do it from a position of superiority because that is a lie.  You cannot speak truth and lie at the same time.  It starts by seeing our own need for forgiveness.

3. Pearls to Swine: When thinking of unbelievers we often think of the Gospel as mad tasting medicine.  They don’t want it but it is good for them and they really should take it.  We know what is best for them.  Take your medicine and be grateful.  But, we forget or neglect the tremendous value and worth of the Word of God.  It is not something to be pushed on other people.  Would you force another against their will to take gold from you?  Would you force them to eat from an amazing banquet of the finest food?  Of course not.  You would recognize that as ridiculous.  You may invite them, offer, encourage, teach, prepare them for the gift, but if they don’t choose to take your gold, you wouldn’t force them.  But how much more valuable and precious is the gift of the Holy Spirit than gold or silver.  How much more nourishing is the Word of God than earthly food.  When we treat it as bad tasting medicine, we dishonor its true worth and value.

My Answers:

3.
a.
To put yourself in the position of being over another person, particularly a fellow believer, for the purpose of demeaning or disparaging them.  i.e., don’t have a “holier than thou” attitude

b.
same way judge others will be judged, measure for measure.  Focus on the plank in your own eye over the speck of sawdust in another (judge yourself first and foremost and right the situation).  Do not give dogs what is sacred, don’t throw pearls to swine

c.
forgive and you will be forgiven, give and it will be given to you (blessing of measure).  Can the blind lead the blind, will they not both fall into a pit, Student is not above the teacher, but everyone fully trained will be like their teacher

4.
a.
Matt: brother or sister within the church, but as a brother/sister, a confidant, friend
Gal 1: Preachers (people or angels) – that they stay true to the word of God
Gal 6:Someone who has been caught in a sin.  Also, yourself (test your own actions)
2 John: Deceivers, antichrist, false teachers

b.
Take the glaring sin out of your own life first ( hidden can be glaring).  Point out their sin to them with compassion and nurturing.  If ignore, join with 1-2 in the body privately to intervene, expand to church, remove from fellowship.

5.
Each of us is given our own free will and choice.  No one can force or coerce another into accepting the gift of salvation or force them to truly repent.  They must choose.  If they fail to choose or choose the wrong path, leave them be (although you can continue to pray for them). “Do not speak to fools, for they will scorn your prudent words.” Prov 23:9