InformationPoint #1Ø I am your servant in ChristØ Illustration - Stevie Williams, Tiger’s caddieØ If you need to prayØ If you need to ask follow up questions and would rather do thatone on oneØ If you would like to discuss a life situationPoint #2Ø Russ and Carol are here this week to relax, restore and receiveministryØ Background bio with Russ
InformationPoint #3Ø Be PromptØ Start on time and End on timePoint #4Ø Notes to be handed out at the end of each sessionØ There are no footnotes as these are my own study notesPoint #5Ø Interactive dialogue
Impulses for our RetreatØ Getting people back into God’s word so the word can get backinto God’s peopleØ Building a solid foundation of Bible doctrine to learn and livethe God-centered lifeØ In depth teaching and discussion in concentrated time frameExcursus on Bible doctrineØ Man-centered (a better life, Bible is a guidebook)Ø God-centered (a crucified life, Bible is authoritative)Ø See notes attachedØ To have fellowship, breaking of bread and prayer
Instructions and Ground Rules for RetreatØ Pray and Prepare (see next page)Ø 1 John 1:9Ø Colossians 1:9-121ØWhat is God teaching and revealing?Ø John 14:26, John 16:13-15Ø What verses do I need to study and/or memorize?Ø 2 Timothy 2:15Ø What truths do I need to share in my sphere of influence?Ø Luke 12:48 - to whom much is given, much is requiredØ Matthew 10:8 - as you have freely received, freely giveØ John 8:32 - you will know the truth and the truth will set you free
Retreat BooksØ God is the Gospel - Dr. John PiperØAshamed of the Gospel - Dr. John MacArthurØThe Cross Centered Life - C.J. MahaneyØThe Gospel and Personal Evangelism - Mark Dever
God is the gospel means: “the highest, best, final, decisivegood in the good news…is the glory of God in the face ofJesus Christ revealed to you for your everlasting enjoyment”
Preparation for the HeartI – Incline your heart (Psalm 119:36)Incline my heart to Your testimoniesAnd not to dishonest gain.O – Open my eyes (Psalm 119:18)Open my eyes, that I may beholdWonderful things from Your law.U – Unite my heart (Psalm 86:11)Teach me Your way, O LORD;I will walk in Your truth;Unite my heart to fear Your nameS – Satisfy my heart (Psalm 90:14)O satisfy us in the morning with Your lovingkindness,That we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.
Exhortation in the GospelRomans 1:16For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God forsalvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to theGreek.Colossians 1:21-23Col. 1:21 ¶ And although you were formerly alienated and hostilein mind, engaged in evil deeds,Col. 1:22 yet He has now reconciled you in His fleshly bodythrough death, in order to present you before Him holy andblameless and beyond reproach—Col. 1:23 if indeed you continue in the faith firmly established andsteadfast, and not moved away from the hope of the gospel that youhave heard, which was proclaimed in all creation under heaven,and of which I, Paul, was made a minister.
Turn to Hebrews Chapter 3Hebrews 3:6The “if” is conditional for us being something nowThe we are “God’s household”Hebrews 3:14Hebrews 3:1Illustration:If you say Albany then you are a southwest Georgia personSaying Albany doesn’t make you a southwest Georgia person butgives evidence that you are one.
You are “if” - Conditional statement that follows…But rather the writer is saying if you are in God’s household thiswill be true of you.QuestionDo you hold fast in hope?Do you hold fast in confidence?How can you know that you are part of His house?It is NOT that you prayed a prayer 30 years ago.It is NOT that you have walked an aisle.The important thing is “where is your confidence now”“where is your hope now”
If - conditionalWe hold fast to our hope we are His householdThis defines the members of the houseHebrews 3:14We have become (perfect/active/indicative)The condition is future “if...until the end”The effect of the condition relates to the pastThe verse DOES NOT mean that one needs to hold fast to yourassurance in order to become, at some point in time, a future apartaker of ChristBut the verse DOES mean to hold fast to your assurance thatmanifests you have become a partaker in Christ
Ask the following question:In Hebrews 3:14Ø If having become partakers of Christ (past-tense) is evidencedby holding fast to our assurance,Ø then what can we say if a person doesn’t hold fast to theirassurance?It must mean…Ø A person who is not holding fast to their assurance in Christ hasthen never been a partaker in Christ.And it also means none of this assures salvation:Ø Raised a handØ Signed a cardØ Walked an aisleØ Joined a churchØ Got baptizedØ Went down front at the Billy Graham crusade
Exhortations in the gospel continue through HebrewsHeb. 2:1 ¶ For this reason we must pay much closer attention towhat we have heard, so that we do not drift away from it.Heb. 3:6 but Christ was faithful as a Son over His house—whosehouse we are, if we hold fast our confidence and the boast of ourhope firm until the end.Heb. 3:14 For we have become partakers of Christ, if we hold fastthe beginning of our assurance firm until the end,Heb. 6:11 And we desire that each one of you show the samediligence so as to realize the full assurance of hope until the end,
Exhortations in the gospel continue through HebrewsHeb. 6:12 so that you will not be sluggish, but imitators of thosewho through faith and patience inherit the promises.Heb. 10:23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope withoutwavering, for He who promised is faithful;Heb. 10:25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as is thehabit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more asyou see the day drawing near.Heb. 12:1 ¶ Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnessessurrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sinwhich so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the racethat is set before us,
Exhortations in the gospel continue through HebrewsHeb. 13:20 ¶ Now the God of peace, who brought up from the deadthe great Shepherd of the sheep through the blood of the eternalcovenant, even Jesus our Lord,Heb. 13:21 equip you in every good thing to do His will, workingin us that which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, towhom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.
Are you asking the question, well if I am going to have to endureuntil the end where is my security?And the answer - your security has nothing to do with you buteverything to do with Christ.When you wake up in the morning as a Christian you will only doso on the basis of the Holy Spirit’s enduring grace in your life.Phil. 1:6 For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began agood work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.1Th. 5:24 Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it topass.
Hebrews 3:7-19 is a therefore based on the “if” statement ofHebrews 3:6Therefore is a WARNINGHow does the Holy Spirit continue to beset courage, endurance,confidence, assurance, and holding fast to assurance of hopeAnswer - through the word of God,Romans 10:17 tells us that “faith comes by hearing and hearing bythe word of God.”If I am not constantly in the word of God then I’m in danger ofHebrews 2:1
In Hebrews 3:7-19We are to take this as a warning because of what happened to thenation of Israel as they came out of EgyptAnd yet they did not make it to the promised landThe analogy can be transferred over into our Christian lives:We make a decisionThen we are in the wildernessWill we make it?Read Heb. 3:8 DO NOT HARDEN YOUR HEARTS AS WHENTHEY PROVOKED ME, AS IN THE DAY OF TRIAL IN THEWILDERNESS,
Think about what the people of Israel had seen:They watched God bring the 10 plagues on the people of EgyptThey saw God divide the Red Sea as they walked through itunharmedThey watched as God completely defeated their enemiesBut they became hard and murmured in the wildernessLook at the action of God as it relates to His peopleØ He does not say that it is enough to have faith to leave EgyptØ He does not say that it is enough to walk through the Red Sea
The people started to function based on presumed grace or youcould say Exodus mercies and the result was a hard heartIf we today ignore God, and His word, stop depending and relyingon Christ as Lord and Savior then the same result will occur in ourlives, hearts will harden and there will be no entering thepromised landDo not treat the grace of God with contempt or ever act in a waythat presumes upon it.Don’t presume that it is enough to get out of Egypt, or just to walkthrough the Red Sea
How many “professing Christians” heard a message in which:Ø Their sins could be forgivenØ They could stop having to feel guilt for all their past behaviorsØ There would be eternal life of glorious living forever and everØ There would be an escape from hellØ And God would now be 100% on my side and not mad at meanymoreSounds like a deal and I am going to sign up even though there isno love for God or desire to be with Him1 year, 5 years and 10 years later the life of this person looks nodifferent then when they professed faith in Christ. However theyare content to point to a time and place when they were saved.
So how does the enemy start to work on us when we hear thesetruths. He starts to say, you better start reading your Bible,praying, giving and serving. And we say that is right I need to fixmy behaviors.But this text is all about the heart or you could say about a beliefissue that the Israelites had in not trusting or not continue to trustin the goodness of GodA person makes a “profession of faith” and then they discoverthere is NO WATER IN THE WILDERNESS“Go to Habakkuk 3:17-19 - even though the fig tree is gone and nograpes on the vine we will still trust in God
Go to Num. 11:5 “We remember the fish which we used to eat freein Egypt, the cucumbers and the melons and the leeks and theonions and the garlic,Num. 11:6 but now our appetite is gone. There is nothing at all tolook at except this manna.”If you could just go back to the world and the way things used to beinstead of:DiscipleshipBibleChurchWorshipGivingServingAll this manna!
ExhortationIf you have been a “professing believer” and you are just holding on by your fingertipsthen I refer you toHeb. 2:1 ¶ For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, sothat we do not drift away from it.DON’T HARDEN YOUR HEARTA person with years of “luke warm” behavior inPrayer lifeBible reading and studyServingDiscipleshipGivingand no sweet fellowship with GodThen I am praying for you this weekend that the Spirit of God would breakthrough insuch a powerful way that there would be a joy that hits you like never before in your life.And for those who are walking with the Lord I pray this will be like gasoline on a fire inwhich your fire will burn so much brightness and intensity that it will catch others on firefor the Lord Jesus.