Feb 11-17-07 Become Like A Child

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In 2007 the congregation read through "The Message" New Testament by Eugene Peterson. This lesson is taken from the assigned reading from Feb 11-17

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Feb 11-17-07 Become Like A Child

  1. 1. Become Like A Child Nip It In The Bud <ul><li>Matthew 18:1 MSG At about the same time, the disciples came to Jesus asking, &quot;Who gets the highest rank in God's kingdom?&quot; 2   For an answer Jesus called over a child, whom he stood in the middle of the room, </li></ul>
  2. 2. <ul><li>3  and said, &quot;I'm telling you, once and for all, that unless you return to square one and start over like children, you're not even going to get a look at the kingdom, let alone get in. </li></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>4   Whoever becomes simple and elemental again, like this child, will rank high in God's kingdom. 5   What’s more, when you receive the childlike on my account, it's the same as receiving me. </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>Humility, I think that's what it boils down to. Throwing off any sense of accomplishment or ranking and simply turning to Jesus. Can we also consider being born again in relationship to what he says here about start over like children ? </li></ul>
  5. 5. <ul><li>We’ve studied in the past the command to be born again. Today can we talk about the problems that are present after we are born again? God's Word states out right He hates a proud heart. We read in God's Word Moses was the most humble man ever. Look at his accomplishments and his relationship with God. </li></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>Numbers 12:1 CEV  Although Moses was the most humble person in all the world, Miriam and Aaron started complaining, &quot;Moses had no right to marry that woman from Ethiopia! Who does he think he is? </li></ul>
  7. 7. <ul><li>The LORD has spoken to us, not just to him.&quot; The LORD heard their complaint 2    (SEE 12:1) 3    (SEE 12:1) 4    and told Moses, Aaron, and Miriam to come to the entrance of the sacred tent. </li></ul>
  8. 8. <ul><li>There are terrible consequences for harming or misleading one of these humble, meek, child-like people. </li></ul><ul><li>Matthew 18:6 MSG “ But if you give them a hard time, bullying or taking advantage of their simple trust, you'll soon wish you hadn't. </li></ul>
  9. 9. <ul><li>You'd be better off dropped in the middle of the lake with a millstone around your neck. 7  Doom to the world for giving these God-believing children a hard time! Hard times are inevitable, but you don't have to make it worse—and it's doomsday to you if you do. </li></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li>I think he shifts gears a little here to show us how to protect ourselves from falling into this, or any sin. </li></ul><ul><li>Matthew 18:8 MSG  ” If your hand or your foot gets in the way of God, chop it off and throw it away. </li></ul>
  11. 11. <ul><li>You're better off maimed or lame and alive than the proud owners of two hands and two feet, godless in a furnace of eternal fire. 9  And if your eye distracts you from God, pull it out and throw it away. </li></ul>
  12. 12. <ul><li>You're better off one-eyed and alive than exercising your twenty-twenty vision from inside the fire of hell. 10  ”Watch that you don't treat a single one of these childlike believers arrogantly. You realize, don't you, that their personal angels are constantly in touch with my Father in heaven? </li></ul>
  13. 13. <ul><li>Here is the way I think we should approach what He's teaching here. If there are any activities we enjoy that could put us in a position to be tempted it is much better to miss enjoying those activities than being led into temptation and fall into sin. </li></ul>
  14. 14. <ul><li>It's simple, but can be quite difficult to do. If the types of books you like to read are an avenue of temptation, don't read them! If the crowd you run with lends it's self to temptation, find new friends. Do you have thought patterns that bring about temptation, change what you think about. </li></ul>
  15. 15. <ul><li>We could go on and on, but you get the idea. It is better to do without or change what we do, where we go, or what we think than to miss paradise in heaven and end up in the eternal fires of hell. </li></ul>
  16. 16. <ul><li>Why do we want to &quot;nip in the bud&quot; anything that could be tempting to us? Because that's where it all starts. </li></ul><ul><li>James 1:14 MSG  The temptation to give in to evil comes from us and only us. </li></ul>
  17. 17. <ul><li>We have no one to blame but the leering, seducing flare-up of our own lust. 15  Lust gets pregnant, and has a baby: sin! Sin grows up to adulthood, and becomes a real killer. 16  So, my very dear friends, don't get thrown off course. </li></ul>
  18. 18. <ul><li>Temptation leads to lust which grows into sin, and sin will kill us! If we slip up and find temptation staring us in the eye and lust starts to form, do we have any recourse? </li></ul>
  19. 19. <ul><li>1 Corinthian 10:13 MSG  No test or temptation that comes your way is beyond the course of what others have had to face. All you need to remember is that God will never let you down; he'll never let you be pushed past your limit; he'll always be there to help you come through it. </li></ul>
  20. 20. <ul><li>God has promised He will not leave us without an escape route. It may feel like the temptation, lust, then sin is overwhelming, out of our control. God will not allow that to happen, we’re only telling ourselves there’s nothing we can do. What did our savior do when he was tempted? </li></ul>
  21. 21. <ul><li>Matthew 4:1 MSG Next Jesus was taken into the wild by the Spirit for the Test. The Devil was ready to give it. 2 Jesus prepared for the Test by fasting forty days and forty nights. </li></ul>
  22. 22. <ul><li>That left him, of course, in a state of extreme hunger, which the Devil took advantage of in the first test: &quot;Since you are God's Son, speak the word that will turn these stones into loaves of bread.&quot; </li></ul>
  23. 23. <ul><li>4 Jesus answered by quoting Deuteronomy: &quot;It takes more than bread to stay alive. It takes a steady stream of words from God's mouth.&quot; </li></ul>
  24. 24. <ul><li>5 For the second test the Devil took him to the Holy City. He sat him on top of the Temple and said, 6 “Since you are God's Son, jump.&quot; </li></ul>
  25. 25. <ul><li>The Devil goaded him by quoting Psalm 91: &quot;He has placed you in the care of angels. They will catch you so that you won't so much as stub your toe on a stone.&quot; </li></ul>
  26. 26. <ul><li>7 Jesus countered with another citation from Deuteronomy: &quot;Don't you dare test the Lord your God.&quot; 8 For the third test, the Devil took him on the peak of a huge mountain. </li></ul>
  27. 27. <ul><li>He gestured expansively, pointing out all the earth's kingdoms, how glorious they all were. 9 Then he said, &quot;They're yours--lock, stock, and barrel. Just go down on your knees and worship me, and they're yours.&quot; </li></ul>
  28. 28. <ul><li>10 Jesus’ refusal was curt: &quot;Beat it, Satan!&quot; He backed his rebuke with a third quotation from Deuteronomy: &quot;Worship the Lord your God, and only him. Serve him with absolute single-heartedness.&quot; </li></ul>
  29. 29. <ul><li>11 The Test was over. The Devil left. And in his place, angels! Angels came and took care of Jesus' needs. </li></ul><ul><li>Each time He was tempted he came back with the word of God. </li></ul>
  30. 30. <ul><li>The Devil could not stand up against God’s Word, neither the written word or Jesus who John calls the Word. When he had been repelled by the Holy, Steadfast, True Word of God he could do nothing but leave. </li></ul>
  31. 31. <ul><li>It’s not easy to back the Devil down, but using God’s word and Strength Jesus gives us and the escape route that is provided, we can make the Devil flee. </li></ul><ul><li>Okay, temptation has slipped up on you and before you know it you have sinned. What now? </li></ul>
  32. 32. <ul><li>1 John 1:8 MSG  If we claim that we're free of sin, we're only fooling ourselves. A claim like that is errant nonsense. 9  On the other hand, if we admit our sins—make a clean breast of them—he won't let us down; he'll be true to himself. He'll forgive our sins and purge us of all wrongdoing. </li></ul>
  33. 33. <ul><li>We come to Jesus as a humble child having been born again and making ourselves servants, just as Jesus became a servant washing the feet of his apostles. After we have made Jesus our Lord the Devil plans his attack. </li></ul>
  34. 34. <ul><li>He will come after us in disguise, perhaps looking like a fun activity we want to get involved in. Or maybe looking like a group of friends that are fun to be around or maybe he’s lying await someplace we like to go. </li></ul>
  35. 35. <ul><li>God’s word says we want to give in to evil that is coming from us. Say a weakness we have a passion for is hiding a temptation and we give into it. That stirs up lust leading us to sin. </li></ul>
  36. 36. <ul><li>Believers in God beware! The Devil’s out to get’cha. He’s not going to be holding a big sign says, “Sin Over Here!!” He’s going to have a smile on his face and pat you on the back. </li></ul>
  37. 37. <ul><li>Overcome him by asking God’s guidance for “nipping in the bud” the areas of your live where he might be residing. </li></ul>

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