Sermons and Lesson Outlines
God’s personal, moral, and providential plan for His Creation
The Cross and the Skull Mt. 27: 32, Lk. 23: 26-49, Jn. 19: 17-30
Jesus carried the cross up to Golgotha (place of the skull) Mt. 27:32, Lk. 23:26, Jn. 19:17. This was Satan’s last permanent strong hold in history since after the weekend Christ rose with power over Satan’s strongest weapon, death. Thus many organizations use Golgotha or the skull as its emblem as do many secret societies and their derivatives.
A popular image the skull is used prolifically in culture but it symbolizes death (contrast black=dominant color). The word skull is mentioned 2x in the OT: Sampson-Jud. 9:53, Jezebel-II Kings 9:35.
- Jesus knew of the excruciating pain of the impending trials that he was to face approaching Golgotha. When he said, “O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou, wilt” (Mt 26:39).
He clung to the old rugged cross bearing its weight after being stripped, tortured spit upon and ridiculed; when just a week earlier the people were singing “Hosanna, blesseth be the rock”, and probably saying something like “He’s a jolly good fellow that nobody can deny” (anon).
“He who places his hope in people build upon the sand” (GFIII).
The Cross had more of a texture as a tree (rough) than the smooth 2×4 like crosses you see during Christmas. The people compelled, Simon to Help Jesus Carry His Cross.
- When in the Will of God your work will not overtake you.
“God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it” (I Cor. 10:13).
2. God always send help even if it has to come from the ones who are trying to kill you.
“And they compel one Simon a Cyrenian, who passed by, coming out of the country, the father of Alexander and Rufus, to bear his cross” (Mark 15:21).
Monitor (live right in) prolonged circumstances that seem unbearable and reflect at times to see God’s handiwork.
Discerning His will can be a frustrating process.
- “Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution” (2 Tim. 3:12).
- “Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God” Acts 14:22
- ”We glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience” Romans 5:3
Compare & Contrast: N. T. Phrases and Characteristics
God’s Moral Will
- “God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith” (Romans 12:3).
- the first commandment (Mark 12:30)
- Prerequisite for intimacy with God
- Feeding tip (milk Heb 5:13)
Approach “What’s good for the goose is good for the gander” (anon).
God’s Personal Will
- “And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers” (Eph. 4:11).
- The personal application of walking in the Spirit (Gal 5:25)
- Intimate relationship with God
- Feeding tip (meat Heb. 5:14)
Approach “What God has for me is for me” by Miami Mass Choir
God wants an Intimate Personal Relationship with you.
- “But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him” (Hebrews 11:6)
Intimacy in Prayer
- Pray for God’s will – Prayer is an exchange.
While we want information, God wants us to TRUST HIM!
To understanding the voice of God “God does not require us to understand His will, just obey it, even if it seems unreasonable” (pg. 255).
After Trusting God:
Understanding the Principle of Sowing and Reaping and Wisdom are prerequisites for having an intimate relationship with God.
Sowing and Reaping: Ecclesiastes. 11:3
Wisdom: Proverbs 4:7
Conclusion of the Matter
“The man or the woman who develops a lifestyle in harmony with God’s moral commands will experience God’s guidance in a special way. When you and I live lives obedient, then we are consistently in step with God’s thoughts and God’s ways. It makes sense that we are able to discern His voice more easily” (page 253).
• How does childish behavior work against peace and Love?
Remembering events from your childhood may leave you prejudiced or indifferent to some person who wronged you or something that causes ill feelings of hate, leading to resentment. Attitudes may develop towards a person(s) or object(s) or feelings of strong regret. Or one may become embittered due to a regrettable decision made in the past.
1. “Hast thou faith? Have it to thyself before God. Happy is he that condemneth not himself in that thing that he alloweth” (Romans 14:22).
POV (Point of view) #1
Enemies are hard to deal with when you can see them. But when they are hidden, They are really difficult. Paul admonishes us to turn on the lights in our lives and
Spot-light the hidden enemies of love and peace (page 305, line 14) called immature behavior.
ENEMY OF PEACE (exercise)
Indifference can lead to anger that can lead to resentment that can lead to hate that can lead to bitterness. Bitterness is the archenemy of peace. Leading Bible figures experienced bitterness, some overcame some failed to receive victory over bitterness.
Please name the person referred to in the Biblical passage cited (in the space provided)
2. “And she was in bitterness of soul, and prayed unto the LORD, and wept sore” (I Sam. 1:10) ________________ .
3. “Therefore I will not refrain my mouth; I will speak in the anguish of my spirit; I will complain in the bitterness of my soul” (Job 7:11) ____________.
4. “Behold, for peace I had great bitterness: but thou hast in love to my soul delivered it from the pit of corruption: for thou hast cast all my sins behind thy back” (Is 38:17) ____________________.
5. “So the spirit lifted me up, and took me away, and I went in bitterness, in the heat of my spirit; but the hand of the LORD was strong upon me” (Ezek. 13:14).
6. “Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord: (15) Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled; (16) Lest there be any fornicator, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright. (17) For ye knowhow that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears” (Hebrews 12:14-17).
POV # 2
Paul knew that childish ways must be handled as adults because acting out childishly is an hidden enemy.
ENEMY OF LOVE: Immaturity
7. “For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.(10) But when that which is perfect is come , then that which is in part shall be done away. (11) When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. (12) For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. (13) And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity” (I CORINTHIANS 13:9-13).
ENEMY OF PROGRESS develops when your ‘baggage’ from the past is fully operational.
Everyone has baggage, deactivate old ‘baggage’ and conform to Christ-like behavior.
8. “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold all things are become new” (II Cor. 5:17). Now that you are in Christ, old things must be confronted and put into their proper place before proceeding into our future. When Paul says put away childish things he says render the childish mindset inoperable. He’s not saying forget where you came from or hide your testimony. His testimony is as follows.
9. “Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee” (Phil 3:5). Paul changed his ways. The enemy of your progress is your old ways, so use your new weapons (as follows).
10. … “For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds” (2 Cor. 10:4). Our primary tools are the blood of the Lamb, and the word of God (Rev 12:11). Don’t shy away from your testimony of how God changed you from former childhood behaviors and I am no longer obedient to my flesh and what feels good but to Christ.
11. “Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; (6) And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled” (Cor. 10: 5-6).
Egocentric behavior manifests as adults when the `little boy’ or `girl’ takes over. The first thing a child learns when entering school is how to share. Selfishness is synonymous with child-like behavior. This type of behavior is typical and even expected from children (e.g. when a new brother or sister arrives and the baby is no longer the baby). The child acts out. This behavior must be recognized and combated as adults in any setting including at church.
12. …“Called of God an high priest after the order of Melchisedec. (11) Of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing ye are dull of hearing. (12) For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. (13) For every one that useth milk is unskillful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe.14But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil” (Hebrews 5:10-14).
PERFORMANCE BASED BEHAVIORS
Examples of thought patterns ingrained as a child:
I have to be perfect
You’ll never amount to anything
I’m a failure and inadequate
If you can’t have your way, throw a fit
You must have things to be secure
You can’t trust the opposite sex
Sex is dirty
God and the church are not important
Satan gets a foothold through faulty belief systems that develop when the source of problem is denied and one blames others and self examination is not considered.
THE HOLY SPIRIT CONVICTS
1. Take responsibility
2. Get to the root of the problem
3. Seek godly counsel
4. Surrender fully to the Lord
5. Trust God to bring about healing
2. HANNAH 3. JOB 4. ISAIAH
ENVISION, WRITE-DOWN, CONCEIVE, MANIFEST
DEFINED- The things we aspire to achieve.
“The plans of the diligent lead surely to plenty,
But those of everyone who is hasty, surely to poverty.” (Proverbs 21:5)
1. COMMENTARY & DISCUSSION
a.“If you aim for nothing you are bound to hit it every time” (page 326)
b. “A man without a plan is a man without a future” anonymous
c. “If you fail to plan you plan to fail” anonymous
2. COMPARE & CONTRAST
a. Don’t worry about tomorrow & don’t think about tomorrow (page 326 also see Matthew 6:34)
b. “The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord“ (Psalms 37: 23).
c. “Let all things be done decently and in order“. (I Cor. 14:40)
d. “If any provide not for his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worst than an infidel” (I Tim 5:8).
3. The Cost of Discipleship
“For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost , whether he hath sufficient to finish it?” (Luke 15:28)
4. FOUR GOALS: Walking in Faith while planning for the future.
a. Setting goals establishes priorities.
b. Goals assure that you keep first things first. Priorities can be a seen by your actions.
c. Setting goals enables you to move from remorse to real change.
d. “Don’t live a life of regret live a life of achievement while walking in the spirit” (Gal. 6:16,25).
e. Setting goals is a tool for character building.
f. Goals are evident that you are serious about your God-given responsibility.