29 September 2016

In Training

Theme: God raised up a deliverer

Know: From birth, God was training Moses to be the deliverer of the Israelites from Egypt.
Think: Be conscious of God's intentional leading and presence in my life.
Do: Use what you have learned and experienced to serve the Lord as He leads you.

Scripture: Exodus 2:1-25

Notes and questions
B1 Outline
  • Moses' birth Exodus 2:1-10
  • Moses flees from Pharaoh Exodus 2:11-17
  • Moses gets married Exodus 2:18-25
B2 This chapter deals with some of the background of Moses.
B3 God trains His servants (compare Hebrews 12:8). After educating, God tests (Genesis 22:1, Psalm 66:10, John 6:6). All good teachers test. How have you been tested?
B4 What are some ways that God trains His people today?
B5 Think of some examples of God's training in your life.
B6 Consider the timing of the incidences in Moses' birth, Pharaoh's daughter, Moses' sister being there, etc. Can you look back in your life and see how God worked in your life? Please share.
B7 Exodus 2:1-4
  • Is there any significance to the fact that Moses' parents are of the tribe of Levi?
  • What does the description of Moses by his mother mean? "And the woman conceived and bore a son. And when she saw him, that he was beautiful, she hid him three months." (Exodus 2:2, mkjv1962). It is believed that his mother saw not only a beautiful, perfectly born child, she also understood that God had a plan for him. Compare Hebrews 11:23 and Acts 7:20.
B8 Exodus 2:5-6, did God cause baby Moses to cry and move the Pharaoh's daughter with compassion? Was the timing of this an accident? Any application for our lives?
B9 Exodus 2:7-10, what would Moses remember about this time? Were prayers answered?
B10 Exodus 2:11-14
  • Why did Moses go out to the Israelites?
  • What did Moses see?
  • What was his reaction? Was it correct for him to kill the Egyptian?
  • Why did the Israelites ask Moses this question?
B11 Exodus 2:15-22
  • Why was Pharaoh angry?
  • What did Moses do?
  • Why did Moses go to Median? (They were near relatives and still worshiped the true God. Exodus 2:16)
  • Was Reuel, the father of the daughters that Moses helped, surprised that an Egyptian helped them?
  • In what ways was Moses life changed?
B12 How would these incidents in Moses life prepare him for being used by God?
B13 What training has God been doing in your life?
B14 How can we serve God?

25 September 2016

Just a little patience

Theme: Godly attitudes

Know: We are to patiently endure suffering, waiting for God's deliverance.
Think: View suffering as a temporary condition that will one day be done away with.
Do: Patiently live for Christ, praying in all circumstances.

Scriptures: James 5:7-20

Notes and questions:
B1 Outline
  • Money James 5:1-6
  • Patience James 5:7-12
  • Sickness James 5:13-18
  • Brother's keeper James 5:19-20
B2 Give some examples of patience.
B3 Give some examples of perseverance.
B4 Why is patience important for a Christian especially?
B5 Why is perseverance important for a Christian?
B6 The word for patience in our lesson is more of a perseverance. The saints are under pressure and suffering. James urges them to continue faithfully. Suffering may be in thoughts, desires, words, and deeds. It may be spiritual, emotional, or physical.
B7 James 5:7,
  • What the reason for the word therefore?
  • What are the saints told to wait for?
  • What is the importance of the coming of the Lord?
  • Why is the farmer mentioned here?
  • The word for wait is an expectant wait, an anticipating wait.
  • The early rain is in October to November and latter rain is in March to April.
  • The Lord's coming is the Rapture for living and dead saints.
  • We wait patiently. Why is it important to wait for the Rapture?
B7 James 5:8
  • The word for patience is the same as above. The word for establish means to stabilize, strengthen, set firm. We have to make up our minds that we will be true to God and His word. We need to pray for each other as well.
  • What is reason given for staying patient and stabilizing our hearts?
B8 James 5:9
  • The word grudge or murmur is not a loud in-your-face type of complaining. It is more of a mumbling quietly complaining. Often it would reflect our impatience at waiting for something.
  • Why is this wrong?
  • What does God think of this type of complaining?
  • Is there a proper, acceptable, type of complaining? Give some examples.
  • Standing before the doors (doors is plural) is a Hebrew term referring to something near or happening soon. The Judge is ready to enter the courtroom. Compare "If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin lies at the door. And its desire is for you, but you should rule over it.” (Genesis 4:7, NKJV)
B9 James 5:10-11
  • Why are these two examples given for us?
  • How did the prophets suffer?
  • How did Job suffer?
  • What can we learn about patience in suffering?
B10 James 5:12
  • Should we really need to take an oath to show we are telling the truth?
  • Shouldn't our reputation be such that people would understand that we are telling the truth?
  • Why is truth important?
  • What should you say if your wife asks if you like her dress but you don't?
  • Is having a reputation of being honest and trustworthy important? Is it more important for the Christian?
B11 James 5:13-20
  • The word afflicted means someone is going through a hardship of any type.
  • If we are afflicted, what are we to do? How long are we to pray? Does God always do what we ask? "Now this is the confidence that we have toward Him: if we should ask anything according to His will, He hears us." (1 John 5:14, WPNT)
  • If we are happy, what are we to do? Do we have to do this?
  • What else are we to do, when we are sick? Do we still anoint with oil? Why the phrase "... in the name of the Lord?"
  • Is every sickness healed? If not, does it mean that we do not have faith? What might be some reasons God would not heal?
  • What is the purpose of this type of confession?
  • Why is it good to pray for each other?
  • Did Elijah have a special connection with God for answered prayer? If he did, should we ask the saints or the virgin to intercede for us?
  • How can we follow the instructions of James 5:19-20 if we do not know Christian doctrine?
B12 Next week
  • In training
  • Theme: God raised up a deliverer.
  • Scripture: Exodus 2:1-25

16 September 2016

What is the Gospel?

What is the Gospel?

A1 Kingdom of heaven = kingdom of God
In the KJV version:
1.    Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the
kingdom of heaven
is greater than he. (Matthew 11:11AV)
2.    For I say unto you, Among those that are born of women there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist: but he that is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he. Luke 7:28 KJV
In the EMTV version:
1.    "For I say to you, among those born of women there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist; but he who is least in the
kingdom of God
is greater than he." Luke 7:28 EMTV
2.    "Assuredly I say to you, among those born of women there has not risen one greater than John the Baptist; but he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. Matthew 11:11 EMTV
A2 Every instance of the term "gospel of" in the KJV. The number varies with translation.
Matthew 4:23
And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people.
Gospel of the Kingdom
Matthew 9:35
And Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people.
Gospel of the Kingdom
Matthew 24:14
And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
Gospel of the Kingdom
Mark 1:1
The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God;
Gospel of Jesus Christ
Mark 1:14
Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God,
Gospel of the Kingdom of God
Acts 20:24
But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.
Gospel of the grace of God
Romans 1:1
Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God,
Gospel of God
Romans 1:9
For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I make mention of you always in my prayers;
Gospel of His Son
Romans 1:16
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
Gospel of Christ
Romans 10:15
And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!
Gospel of Peace
Romans 15:16
That I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost.
Gospel of God
Romans 15:19
Through mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God; so that from Jerusalem, and round about unto Illyricum, I have fully preached the gospel of Christ.
Gospel of Christ
Romans 15:29
And I am sure that, when I come unto you, I shall come in the fulness of the blessing of the gospel of Christ.
Gospel of Christ
1 Corinthians 9:12
If others be partakers of this power over you, are not we rather? Nevertheless we have not used this power; but suffer all things, lest we should hinder the gospel of Christ.
Gospel of Christ
1 Corinthians 9:18
What is my reward then? Verily that, when I preach the gospel, I may make the gospel of Christ without charge, that I abuse not my power in the gospel.
Gospel of Christ
2 Corinthians 4:4
In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.
Gospel of Christ
2 Corinthians 9:13
Whiles by the experiment of this ministration they glorify God for your professed subjection unto the gospel of Christ, and for your liberal distribution unto them, and unto all men;
Gospel of Christ
2 Corinthians 10:14
For we stretch not ourselves beyond our measure, as though we reached not unto you: for we are come as far as to you also in preaching the gospel of Christ:
Gospel of Christ
2 Corinthians 10:14
Have I committed an offence in abasing myself that ye might be exalted, because I have preached to you the gospel of God freely?
Gospel of God
2 Corinthians 11:7
Have I committed an offence in abasing myself that ye might be exalted, because I have preached to you the gospel of God freely?
Gospel of God
Galatians 1:7
Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.
Gospel of Christ
Galatians 2:7
But contrariwise, when they saw that the gospel of the uncircumcision was committed unto me, as the gospel of the circumcision was unto Peter;
Gospel of uncircumcision and circumcision
Ephesians 1:13
In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,
Gospel of your salvation
Ephesians 6:15
And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;
Gospel of Peace
Philippians 1:27
Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;
Gospel of Christ
1 Thessalonians 2:2
But even after that we had suffered before, and were shamefully entreated, as ye know, at Philippi, we were bold in our God to speak unto you the gospel of God with much contention.
Gospel of God
1 Thessalonians 2:8
So being affectionately desirous of you, we were willing to have imparted unto you, not the gospel of God only, but also our own souls, because ye were dear unto us.
Gospel of God
1 Thessalonians 2:9
For ye remember, brethren, our labour and travail: for labouring night and day, because we would not be chargeable unto any of you, we preached unto you the gospel of God.
Gospel of God
1 Thessalonians 3:2
And sent Timotheus, our brother, and minister of God, and our fellowlabourer in the gospel of Christ, to establish you, and to comfort you concerning your faith:
Gospel of Christ
2 Thessalonians 1:8
In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ:
Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ
1 Timothy 1:11
According to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, which was committed to my trust.
Gospel of the blessed God
1 Peter 4:17
For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?
Gospel of God
Based on terminology primarily, some believe that there are two gospels. The first is the gospel of the kingdom, and the second is the gospel of grace. The first is what John the Baptist, The Lord Jesus, and the Apostles preached. Paul preached the gospel of grace that was given by revelation to him.
How one teacher explains the Gospel of the Kingdom and comparing it to the Gospel of Grace:
The Gospel of the Kingdom
The gospel for our day is the gospel of the grace of God (Acts 20.24). The word “gospel” (εὐαγγέλιον) means “good news”. The ascended, glorified Lord revealed this gospel to the Apostle Paul. The clearest definition of it is from Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians,
1 Now I make known to you, brethren, the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received, in which also you stand, 2 by which also you are saved, if you hold fast the word which I preached to you, unless you believed in vain. 3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, (1 Corinthians 15.1-4).
This was Paul’s gospel. Paul repeatedly referred to it as his own (Romans 2.16, 16.25; Galatians 2.2, 7; 2 Timothy 2.8).
John the Baptizer, Jesus, and the Twelve proclaimed the gospel of the kingdom, not the gospel of the grace of God (Acts 20.24). The gospel of the grace of God was not preached until the ascended, glorified Lord revealed it to Paul after He commissioned him to be the apostle of the Gentiles (Romans 11.13). What was this gospel or good news that they proclaimed and how was it different from Paul’s gospel?
The table below compares the Gospel of the Kingdom and the Gospel of the Grace of God.
Gospel of the Kingdom
Gospel of the Grace of God
Proclaimed by John the Baptizer, Jesus, and the Twelve.
Proclaimed by Paul.
Preached to Jew only.
Preached primarily to Gentiles.
Required repentance, baptism, and faith + works.
Requires faith alone, faith + 0.
Content of message was Jesus was the Messiah, the Son of God.
Content of message is the death and resurrection of Christ.
Began with John the Baptizer and stopped during the Acts period (Acts 15.11). Resumes after the Rapture.
Began after Jesus commissioned Paul as apostle of the Gentiles.
Ended in Jewish unbelief. Will resume after the Body of Christ is completed. Ends in Jewish belief and fulfills the “great commission” and prophecy.
Ends with completion of the Body of Christ composed of Jews and Gentiles (Rapture).
Gospel during Jesus’ earthly ministry and into Acts. Future “great commission” gospel once the Body of Christ is complete.
Our present gospel–until Body of Christ is completed.
According to this author, Jesus preached the Gospel of the Kingdom to Nicodemus, thus John 3:16 is not for Gentiles:
The passage at hand, John 3.16, was spoken by Jesus to Nicodemus, a Jew. During Jesus’ earthly ministry He proclaimed the “gospel of the kingdom.” For one to be saved under this gospel required believing who He was, the Messiah, the Son and God and water baptism. Therefore, interpretively, in context, John 3.16 is not a Christian verse. It is a Jewish verse since Jesus in His earthly ministry came to proclaim salvation to Jews not Gentiles (Matthew 10.5-6, 15.21-24).
The Gospel of the Kingdom is defined by its adherents differently.
1.    The gospel, or good news, of the Kingdom is the message that Jesus urges us to believe today. Since He is the only Being through whom we may receive salvation (Acts 4:12), we must heed His instruction to “repent, and believe in the gospel” (Mark 1:15).
We prepare for the Kingdom by living according to the rules of the Kingdom now. Explaining how one might enter the Kingdom of God, Jesus told Nicodemus that one must be “born again” (John 3:1-8). This process begins with baptism, which signifies the death of the former sinful man and the beginning of a new life dedicated to Christ (Romans 6:1-5). It culminates in a change from mortal flesh and blood to immortal spirit at Christ’s return (1 Corinthians 15:50-53; 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17).
Interestingly, we find in the Bible seven annual harvest festivals that God wanted His people to keep in their memory and worship. Most people today don’t even know the names of many of these days, but God called them “holy”—He said they are His days!
2.    When Jesus began His three-year earthly ministry, He preached that “the kingdom of God is near” (Matthew 4:17;Luke 10:9). Mark 1:14–15 gives a concise description of Jesus’ primary focus during His time on earth: “Now after John was arrested, Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.’” When asked to define His kingdom, Jesus explained it this way: “The kingdom of God is not coming in ways that can be observed. . . . The kingdom of God is in the midst of you” (Luke 17:20–21). Romans 14:17 says that the kingdom of God is a matter “of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.”
3.    The simplest way to understand the distinction is the Gospel of Salvation deals only with salvation for your soul. The Gospel of the Kingdom deals with all things that the cross affected including salvation and reconciliation of all things, including the material world that was lost in the fall.
In agreement with this definition is this chart:
Gospel of Salvation
Gospel of the Kingdom
Focus: Evangelism/salvation
Focus: Taking dominion
Eternal, heavenly focus
Material, social, earthly, secular
Addresses only the soul
Addresses soul and body
“Rapture escape” mentality
“Possess the land” mentality
Sacred vs. secular—dualism
Impacts all aspects of society
Goal: Transaction, “win the next soul”
Goal: Influence through servanthood,
godly leadership, active faith
Example: Nigeria
Example: Almolonga, Guatemala
4.    Keith Giles- “Dallas, can you explain the difference between the Gospel of the Kingdom and the more popular, Gospel of the Atonement for us?”
Dallas Willard – “The Gospel of the Kingdom is that you can now live in the Kingdom of God and the Gospel of the Atonement is that your sins can be forgiven. Those are the, respective, ‘Good Newses’, I suppose.”
KG- “So, are you saying there are two Gospels? Are my sins not forgiven if I live in the Kingdom? Or am I not in the Kingdom of God if I accept the Gospel of the Atonement?”
DW- “The way it practically works out is this, if you have the Gospel of the Atonement, and that’s all you’ve heard, the rest of your life you will run on your own and you may or may not think of being a disciple of Jesus or of obeying him or of devoting your life to the Kingdom of God. You can still do that, but those things are all optional for you. That is where we really stand in our Christian culture today. Anything more than forgiveness of sins, and by that I mean ‘Heaven when you die’, is optional and most of our professed believers now do not know that they can live in the Kingdom of God now.
“By contrast, anyone who is alive in the Kingdom of God now knows that their sins are forgiven because they have the life of Heaven in them now. So Heaven and forgiveness are natural parts of the Gospel of the Kingdom of God whereas discipleship and holiness and power and other scriptural evidences are not a natural part of the Gospel of the Atonement. I want to emphasize that sense of being a natural part.
“Here’s one of the ways I try to help ministers understand this difference. I ask them, ‘Does the Gospel you preach truly lead to discipleship to Jesus?’ and the Gospel of the Kingdom has that natural connection. It’s not trusting the Kingdom, it’s about trusting Jesus and living in the Kingdom with Him. So then, for example, the New Birth is the birth from above and as Jesus was telling Nicodemus, “You must be born again..”, now that’s about new life that isn’t just Atonement. One of the strange things that has happened is that verses like John 3:16 is treated as if it were a forgiveness verse whereas it is really a new life verse. The whole context is about having the life of The Kingdom. Nicodemus came saying he could see it and Jesus said, ‘No, you can’t see it’, and helped him to understand why he couldn’t.
The summary of these preceding 4 views (though there may be more views) is as follows:
1.    Hebrew Roots
2.    Orthodox Christianity
3.    Charismatic (NAR)
4.    Progressive Church (Emergent, Contemplative Spirituality)
There is only one Gospel in all dispensations (Innocence, Conscience, Human Government, Promise, Law, Grace, and Millennium).
1.    It was preached by God in the garden and believed by the saints before the flood. Genesis 6, Genesis 5:24 (Hebrews 11:5-6), Titus 1:1-3
2.    It was preached by God to Abraham. Genesis 15:6
3.    It was preached by Moses and the prophets. Psalm 106:31, Psalm 32, Exodus 14:31
4.    It was preached by the Lord Jesus, God the Son, in His earthly ministry.
5.    It was preached by Paul. Romans 4:3, Galatians 3:6-8, Romans 10:11
6.    It was preached by the other Apostles. James 2:23
7.    It is preached today. 2 Corinthians 5:19-21, Mark 16:15, Colossians 1:23 (from the beginning to the end of time)
8.    It will be preached in the future Revelation 14:6 (Compare Revelation 14:9),
It is believing God's message.
1.    We are sinners. We are not good. We have broken God's laws. Romans 3:23
2.    We deserve punishment. This is eternal, physical punishment in hell. Romans 6:23
3.    Jesus is the Messiah. Matthew 16:16, John 6:69
4.    Messiah is our Passover Lamb (He took our punishment) 1 Corinthians 5:7, Isaiah 53:6
5.    We believe and trust in the Messiah, Jesus. 1 John 5:1, Romans 10:10
Don't fall for the teaching that there are other Gospels taught in the Scriptures. There is only one Gospel; it is that Gospel that we need to believe and teach.