Aug 31-Sep 6-08 Jesus Our Hope

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Our little Church is using a Chronological Bible Reading Schedule by Skip Andrews. It can be found here: http://www.churchofchristduluthga.org/
Each Sunday a lesson is given from some of that week's reading. This lesson covers Aug 31-Sep 6

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Aug 31-Sep 6-08 Jesus Our Hope

  1. 1. Hope <ul><li>Jeremiah did not just preach doom and gloom. He told the people to hope in God, who would restore them. </li></ul><ul><li>Christians must never lose all hope. Our belief in Jesus Christ gives us hope for the future. </li></ul>
  2. 2. Hope <ul><li>For thousands of years, using his wit and charm, man had tried to be friends with God. And for thousands of years he had let God down more than he had lifted him up. </li></ul>
  3. 3. Hope <ul><li>He's done the very thing he promised he'd never do. It was a fiasco. Even the holiest of the heroes sometimes forgot whose side they were on. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Hope <ul><li>Some of the scenarios in the Bible look more like the adventures of Sinbad the sailor than stories for vacation Bible school. Remember these characters? </li></ul>
  5. 5. Hope <ul><li>Aaron: Right-hand man to Moses. Witness of the plagues. Member of the &quot;Red Sea Riverbed Expedition.&quot; Holy priest of God. But if he was so saintly, what is he doing leading the Israelites in fireside aerobics in front of the golden calf? </li></ul>
  6. 6. Hope <ul><li>The sons of Jacob: The fathers of the tribes of Israel. Great-grandsons of Abraham. Yet, if they were so special, why were they gagging their younger brother and sending him to Egypt? </li></ul>
  7. 7. Hope <ul><li>David: The man after God's own heart. The King's king. The giant-slayer and songwriter. He's also the guy whose glasses got steamy as a result of a bath on a roof. Unfortunately, the water wasn't his, nor was the woman he was watching. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Hope <ul><li>And Samson: Swooning on Delilah's couch, drunk on the wine, perfume, and soft lights. He's thinking, She's putting on something more comfortable. She's thinking, I know I put those shears in here somewhere. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Hope <ul><li>Adam adorned in fig leaves and stains of forbidden fruit. </li></ul><ul><li>Moses throwing both a staff and a temper tantrum. King Saul looking into a crystal ball for the will of God. Noah, drunk and naked in his own tent. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Hope <ul><li>These are the chosen ones of God? This is the royal lineage of the King? These are the ones who were to carry out God's mission? </li></ul>
  11. 11. Hope <ul><li>It's easy to see the absurdity. </li></ul><ul><li>Why didn't he give up? Why didn't he let the globe spin off its axis? </li></ul>
  12. 12. Hope <ul><li>Even after generations of people had spit in his face, he still loved them. After a nation of chosen ones had stripped him naked and ripped his incarnated flesh, he still died for them. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Hope <ul><li>And even today, after billions have chosen to prostitute themselves before the pimps of power, fame, and wealth, he still waits for them. </li></ul>
  14. 14. Hope <ul><li>It is inexplicable. It doesn't have a drop of logic nor a thread of rationality. </li></ul><ul><li>And yet, it is that very irrationality that gives the gospel its greatest defense. For only God could love like that. </li></ul><ul><li>(From God Came Near by Max Lucado) </li></ul>
  15. 15. Hope <ul><li>Do this project with someone close to you: spend an hour on your own making a list of all God has done for you. Then share together and rejoice in his goodness and faithfulness. </li></ul><ul><li>(Max Lucado Devotional Bible) </li></ul>
  16. 16. Hope <ul><li>Proverbs 13:12 NET Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is like a tree of life. </li></ul>
  17. 17. Hope <ul><li>Isaiah 40:31 NET But those who wait for the LORD's help find renewed strength; they rise up as if they had eagles' wings, they run without growing weary, they walk without getting tired. </li></ul>
  18. 18. Hope <ul><li>Jeremiah 29:11 NET For I know what I have planned for you,' says the LORD. 'I have plans to prosper you, not to harm you. I have plans to give you a future filled with hope. </li></ul>
  19. 19. Hope <ul><li>Romans 15:13 NET Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you believe in him, so that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. </li></ul>
  20. 20. Hope <ul><li>Hebrews 11:1 NET Now faith is being sure of what we hope for, being convinced of what we do not see. </li></ul>
  21. 21. Expect To Be Persecuted <ul><li>Judah's leaders had persecuted Jeremiah repeatedly for faithfully proclaiming God's message. In this passage, the prophet was thrown into a well to die. </li></ul>
  22. 22. Expect To Be Persecuted <ul><li>A Cushite, Ebed-Melech, was willing to stand up for Jeremiah and plead for his life. </li></ul><ul><li>Followers of Christ should expect to be persecuted. Commitment to God will not always make life easy. </li></ul>
  23. 23. Expect To Be Persecuted <ul><li>Today many of us think we are doing God a favor when we tell another about Christ, even though we were commanded to do so. And we think we are suffering real persecution when someone makes light of our faith. </li></ul>
  24. 24. Expect To Be Persecuted <ul><li>There are places in the world where Christians can still be jailed for sharing their faith or face the death penalty for leading a lost soul to Christ, but they are few and far between. </li></ul>
  25. 25. Expect To Be Persecuted <ul><li>Most people don't care what others believe in, or if they believe in anything. </li></ul><ul><li>The Christian faith has become a cheap faith because we too often live as if it has no value. </li></ul>
  26. 26. Expect To Be Persecuted <ul><li>We complain when the preacher runs over a few minutes on the Sunday sermon and consider it a great inconvenience to return to services once or twice more in the same week. </li></ul>
  27. 27. Expect To Be Persecuted <ul><li>No wonder so much of the world does not consider our faith relevant when we are not even willing to give of our time, much less our freedom or lives, for what we say we believe in. </li></ul>
  28. 28. Expect To Be Persecuted <ul><li>Think about it. Have you ever been persecuted for sharing your faith in Christ? Has your faith cost you anything? If not, perhaps you had better re-examine your faith to see if it measures up. </li></ul><ul><li>(From Unto the Hills by Billy Graham) </li></ul>
  29. 29. Expect To Be Persecuted <ul><li>Are you going through a difficult time because of your faith in Christ? Do people look down upon you or exclude you because of your faith? </li></ul>
  30. 30. Expect To Be Persecuted <ul><li>Do you know some Christians who are undergoing persecution or having particularly tough times? Pray for these people. Pray for strength to endure for yourself and others, then band together with others in need. </li></ul><ul><li>(Max Lucado Devotional Bible) </li></ul>
  31. 31. Struggles <ul><li>Mark 13:9 NET &quot;You must watch out for yourselves. You will be handed over to councils and beaten in the synagogues. You will stand before governors and kings because of me, as a witness to them. </li></ul>
  32. 32. Struggles <ul><li>John 15:18 NET &quot;If the world hates you, be aware that it hated me first. 19 If you belonged to the world, the world would love you as its own. </li></ul>
  33. 33. Struggles <ul><li>However, because you do not belong to the world, but I chose you out of the world, for this reason the world hates you. 20 Remember what I told you, 'A slave is not greater than his master.' </li></ul>
  34. 34. Struggles <ul><li>If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they obeyed my word, they will obey yours too. 21 But they will do all these things to you on account of my name, because they do not know the one who sent me. </li></ul>
  35. 35. Struggles <ul><li>2 Timothy 3:10 NET You, however, have followed my teaching, my way of life, my purpose, my faith, my patience, my love, my endurance, 11 as well as the persecutions and sufferings that happened to me in Antioch, in Iconium, and in Lystra. </li></ul>
  36. 36. Struggles <ul><li>I endured these persecutions and the Lord delivered me from them all. 12 Now in fact all who want to live godly lives in Christ Jesus will be persecuted. </li></ul>
  37. 37. Struggles <ul><li>1 Peter 4:12 NET Dear friends, do not be astonished that a trial by fire is occurring among you, as though something strange were happening to you. </li></ul>
  38. 38. Struggles <ul><li>13 But rejoice in the degree that you have shared in the sufferings of Christ, so that when his glory is revealed you may also rejoice and be glad. </li></ul>
  39. 39. Struggles <ul><li>14 If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory, who is the Spirit of God , rests on you. 15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer or thief or criminal or as a troublemaker. </li></ul>
  40. 40. Struggles <ul><li>16 But if you suffer as a Christian, do not be ashamed, but glorify God that you bear such a name. 17 For it is time for judgment to begin, starting with the house of God. </li></ul>
  41. 41. Struggles <ul><li>And if it starts with us, what will be the fate of those who are disobedient to the gospel of God? 18 And if the righteous are barely saved, what will become of the ungodly and sinners? </li></ul>
  42. 42. Struggles <ul><li>19 So then let those who suffer according to the will of God entrust their souls to a faithful Creator as they do good. </li></ul>
  43. 43. The Go-Between <ul><li>Ezekiel 22:30 NET &quot;I looked for a man from among them who would repair the wall and stand in the gap before me on behalf of the land, so that I would not destroy it, but I found no one. </li></ul>
  44. 44. The Go-Between <ul><li>Perhaps as you look at some of the tragedies of the world—the armed conflicts, the political breakdowns, the crimes of injustice or indifference, the ethical compromises </li></ul>
  45. 45. The Go-Between <ul><li>you wonder why some good and strong person cannot be found to lead the way out of the trouble. </li></ul><ul><li>The Lord wondered the same thing as He surveyed wicked Judah. Having enumerated the sins of the people. </li></ul>
  46. 46. The Go-Between <ul><li>He told Ezekiel that He had searched in vain for someone who could &quot;stand in the gap&quot; between their guilt and His righteous wrath. </li></ul>
  47. 47. The Go-Between <ul><li>No worthy go-between could be found. This search recalls Jeremiah's futile attempt to locate even one righteous person whose presence would save the city. </li></ul>
  48. 48. The Go-Between <ul><li>Neither among the poor nor the leaders was there a single individual who was not guilty of departing from God's ways. </li></ul>
  49. 49. The Go-Between <ul><li>Ultimately, only Christ is righteous enough to serve as the go-between to connect a holy God and sinful humanity. </li></ul>God Humans
  50. 50. <ul><li>1 Timothy 2:5 NET For there is one God and one intermediary between God and humanity, Christ Jesus, himself human, 6 who gave himself as a ransom for all, revealing God's purpose at his appointed time. </li></ul>
  51. 51. The Go-Between <ul><li>Hebrews 9:15 NET And so he is the mediator of a new covenant, so that those who are called may receive the eternal inheritance he has promised, since he died to set them free from the violations committed under the first covenant. </li></ul>
  52. 52. The Go-Between <ul><li>Apart from Him, none of us would be free of God's wrath, for all of us have sinned. </li></ul><ul><li>Romans 3:21 NET But now apart from the law the righteousness of God (which is attested by the law and the prophets) has been disclosed </li></ul>
  53. 53. The Go-Between <ul><li>22 namely, the righteousness of God through the faithfulness of Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction, 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. </li></ul>
  54. 54. The Go-Between <ul><li>24 But they are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus. 25 God publicly displayed him at his adeath as the mercy seat accessible through faith. </li></ul>
  55. 55. The Go-Between <ul><li>This was to demonstrate his righteousness, because God in his forbearance had passed over the sins previously committed. </li></ul>
  56. 56. The Go-Between <ul><li>26 This was also to demonstrate his righteousness in the present time, so that he would be just and the justifier of the one who lives because of Jesus' faithfulness. </li></ul>
  57. 57. The Go-Between <ul><li>However, because Jesus took on Himself the judgment for our sin, we can have unimpeded access to God. </li></ul>
  58. 58. The Go-Between <ul><li>We can also act as go-betweens in the troubles around us, &quot;standing in the gap&quot; to bridge chasms of indifference and oppression. </li></ul>
  59. 59. The Go-Between <ul><li>We can do what we can to stem the tide of evil and tell others of the opportunity to know God through Christ. And we can intercede for others in prayer. (Word in Life Study Bible) </li></ul>
  60. 60. Only Jesus <ul><li>Our only Hope is in Jesus. Has our Faith in Him made others take notice. Even to the point of ridicule or suffering? Jesus is our only Hope because He is the only Go-Between giving us access to God The Father. </li></ul>

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