Tag: Family Worship

Preparing Our Hearts to Worship Psalm 118:15-16

Preparing Our Hearts to Worship Psalm 118:15-16

As we turn our hearts towards worship, guest writer Mike Senders takes us to Psalm 118, where shouts of joy and victory resound in the tents of the righteous…

Ps 118:15-16 (NASB)

“The sound of joyful shouting and salvation is in the tents of the righteous; The right hand of the LORD does valiantly. The right hand of the LORD is exalted; The right hand of the LORD does valiantly.”

In our passage today, the Psalmist exalts the LORD for his prowess in battle. He takes rest and refuge in the knowledge that it is the LORD who goes out to battle before the armies, and no accomplishment lies in himself. Our Psalmist is no doubt looking to the Song of Moses (Ex 15) as his inspiration; for like the battle the LORD fought against the mighty Pharaoh of Egypt, so again it is the Lord who conquers over the enemies of King David.

When the LORD is acknowledged as he who fights for us, the blessings of the triumph go out to those who are also under our care. Abraham sought a spiritual land rather than an earthly one (Heb 11:8-10); for it was not he who fought as a warlord- conquering- but rather, by faith he sought out for a foreign land and his children reaped the benefit. So as for us, when we look to the Lord to fight our battles for us, and acknowledge him as our champion, those who in our “tents” will also joyfully shout for the salvation of the Lord.

Three times the right hand of the Lord is here exalted. The words “does valiantly” can also be translated, “conquers.” The idea here is exactly as Moses put it, “The LORD is a man of war.”(Ex 15:3) Acknowledging the Lord’s right hand is to acknowledge his sword-hand, his battle-prowess, his place as a warrior-king. He does not fight behind us, driving his slaves with a whip, but goes out before; it is only by his might that the battle is won. It should be noted here that not once does David claim victory for himself, not once does he praise his own might, but instead he heaps all the glory upon God who fights his battles in his stead. Once again, this is in comparison to Moses and Pharaoh. In Egyptian art (and in many other eastern cultures), it was common to depict the king in the image as larger than the rest of the army, and also to attribute the entirety of the victory to the king. In one image, one can see Pharaoh charging an enemy, though his entire army fled, driving the discouraged enemy into the sea. Moses mocks this, for the LORD owns the sea, and rather than simply driving Pharaoh into it, he raised it up against Pharaoh, and brought it down upon him. (Ex 15:1-5) After this, we see Moses, like David, praise the Lord’s right hand, “Your right hand, O LORD, is majestic in power, your right hand, O LORD, shatters the enemy.” (Ex 15:6) We can trust that the LORD fights for us, the he goes out before us, and that he is a foe against which no enemy can stand. In this, all the righteous can take heart.

We pray,

LORD, our King, we thank you for your protection you give us as your children. It is you, and you alone, who fights our battles for us. We are so weak, and like sheep, are so prone to wandering, and fleeing in terror from those who would harm us. We pray to you, our sovereign God, that you would continue to protect us, and that we may take delight in your victory. We thank you for all that you have done for us, and it is in Jesus’ precious Name that we pray, Amen.

 

For more of Mike’s enjoyable teaching:

Twitter: @pressingonpcast
Apostle’s Creed (Our Essential Creed)

Apostle’s Creed (Our Essential Creed)

Below, you will find the foundational statement of faith of all Reformed Christians. Officially codified in AD 390, this is a concise statement on the essentials of Christian Orthodoxy.

 

I believe in God the Father, Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth:

And in Jesus Christ, his only begotten Son, our Lord:

Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary:

Suffered under Pontius Pilate; was crucified, dead and buried: He descended into hell:

The third day he rose again from the dead:

He ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty:

From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead:

I believe in the Holy Ghost:

I believe in the holy catholic church: the communion of saints:

The forgiveness of sins:

The resurrection of the body:

And the life everlasting. Amen.

People You Should Know: Abraham, Isaac,  Jacob, and Joseph

People You Should Know: Abraham, Isaac,  Jacob, and Joseph

In the Old Testament, we find 4 very important people: Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph. Here is a brief overview of what we can learn from them.

Where can I find their stories?

Abraham: Genesis 11-25

Issac: Genesis 17:15-35:29

Jacob: Genesis 25-50

Joseph: Genesis 30-50

What are they known for?

Abraham:

  • Had faith that pleased God
  • “Father” of the Jewish People
  • Well respected in the land and was known for protecting family at any cost
  • Known for Great Hospitality
  • He was a wealthy land owner with much livestock

Isaac:

  • Miracle child born to Abraham and Sara in old age
  • First descendant in fulfillment of God’s Promise to Abraham
  • Twin sons, Jacob and Esau: Isaac favored Esau and tried to move the line of God’s Promise through Esau
  • Nearly sacrificed on Mt. Moriah (Calvary in the NT) as part of a test of faith

Jacob:

  • Father of the 12 Tribes of Israel
  • Worked 14 years to marry Rachel
  • Shrewd business man

Joseph:

  • Sold into slavery by his brothers and then rose to become ruler in Egypt
  • Well known for personal integrity

Was there a major failure

  • Under pressure from foreign leaders, Abraham distorted the truth
  • Isaac played favorites between his sons and alienated his wife
  • Jacob tended to try to rely on his own resources instead of seeking help from God
  • Joseph’s youthful pride caused problems with his brothers

What lessons do they teach us

Abraham

  • God desires dependence, trust, and faith in Him
  • God chooses a people as a channel to reveal Himself

Isaac

  • God’s plans and promises are larger than specific people
  • God remains faithful even though we are faithless

Jacob

  • All human actions, good or evil, are woven into God’s plan and under his control
  • Security does not lie in our own wealth but in God

Joseph:

  • Life’s circumstances do not, per se, matter but our response to them is of great importance
  • No matter what situation we find ourselves in, God is Sovereign and in control
Professor Grant Horner’s Reading Plan (the Plan I will use in 2017)

Professor Grant Horner’s Reading Plan (the Plan I will use in 2017)

Professor Grant Horner’s Bible Reading System & Bookmarks

Horner Plan

I have, recently, shared a couple of reading plans with you and, now, I want to share, with you, the plan that I will be using in 2017, Professor Grant Horner’s Reading Plan. This will be an especially ambitious plan for me because, even though, I read my Bible every day, I do not usually consume this level of content on a daily basis. If you follow this plan you will read ten chapters of the Bible per day. Yes, you read that correctly, 3650 chapters of the Bible in a year. There area 1189 chapters in the Bible which means that you will read the Bible 3.06 times in a year. Since you will go through different sections each day, you will get a better idea of how the Bible relates to itself and how to better interpret it.

Which Bible goes best with the Horner Plan?

There are three Bibles that I recommend with this plan: The Crossway ESV Single Column Legacy Bible, the Tyndale Select NLT Reference Bible or the Cambridge Clarion (ESV, NAS, KJV, NKJV, NIV). I will be using the ESV first and then the Select NLT for the 2nd time through. I will decide on which Bible to use for the 3rd time through when I get there.

If you only have 1 Bible, do not feel bad. Study with what you have. If you are going to buy a new Bible for this plan, here is what I would recommend:

  • Get an easy to read translation. Here is where NIV and NLT really shine
  • Buy a single column paragraph format Bible. I love verse by verse for preaching and study but to get this in depth, you will want as few distractions as possible.
  • Lastly, get a set of colored pens and use them for your notes while you read the Bible
Guided Tour of the Bible

Guided Tour of the Bible

Also from our friends at Zondervan, we have, here, a guided tour of the Bible…

If you click on the link below you will find a downloadable PDF to help you follow along.

Zondervan_-_180_Day_Guided_Tour

(Adapted fromt the NIV Student Bible. c.2002, 2011 by Zondervan. Used by permission. All rights reserved.)

The plan offers a kind of bird’s-eye-view.
The daily readings consist of 180 selected passages, including at least one chapter from each of the Bible’s 66 books. You can read both the chap- ter and its accompanying note in 15 minutes per day.

This “Guided Tour” is exactly that, a guide-as- sisted tour of the Bible’s high points. Such a plan is no substitute for mastering the whole Bible, of course, but it may help lower barriers and point the way down a path for further study. Think of it as an introductory tour through a great art muse- um. You won’t get to see every painting in the mu- seum, but you will learn the basic layout, and may also acquire a taste for art that will entice you to return again and again.

With a few exceptions, the Biblical material appears in rough chronological order. You will read the psalms attributed to David as you read about David’s life. You will read the prophets along with their background history. Portions from the Gospels, too, are interspersed, giving a composite picture of Jesus’ life on earth; and Paul’s letters are scattered throughout the record of his life. This arrangement should help convey the Bible’s “plot.”

 

The Plot Unveiled
Day 1. Genesis 1: A Book of Beginnings Day 2. Genesis 2: One Shining Moment Day 3. Genesis 3: The Crash Day 4. Genesis 4: Crouching at the Door Day 5. Genesis 7: Under Water Day 6. Genesis 8: The Rainbow Day 7. Genesis 15: The Plan Day 8. Genesis 19: A Catastrophe Sent from God Day 9. Genesis 22: Final Exam Day 10. Genesis 27: Jacob Gets the Blessing Day 11. Genesis 28: Something Undeserved Day 12. Genesis 37: Family Battles Day 13. Genesis 41: Behind the Scenes Day 14. Genesis 45: A Long Forgiveness
Birthing a Nation
Day 15. Exodus 3: Time for Action Day 16. Exodus 10–11: The Ten Plagues Day 17. Exodus 14: Miracle at the Red Sea Day 18. Exodus 20: The Ten Commandments Day 19. Exodus 32: The Dream Dies Day 20. Leviticus 26: Legal Matters Day 21. Numbers 11: Trials in the Desert Day 22. Numbers 14: Open Mutiny Day 23. Deuteronomy 4: Never Forget Day 24. Deuteronomy 8: Dangers of Success Day 25. Deuteronomy 28: Loud and Clear Day 26. Joshua 2: New Spies, New Spirit Day 27. Joshua 6: Strange Tactics Day 28. Joshua 7: Slow Learners Day 29. Joshua 24: Home at Last Day 30. Judges 6: Unlikely Leader Day 31. Judges 7: Military Upset Day 32. Judges 16: Superman’s Flaws Day 33. Ruth 1: Tough Love
The Golden Age
Day 34. 1 Samuel 3: Transition Team Day 35. 1 Samuel 16: Tale of Two Kings Day 36. Psalm 23: A Shepherd’s Song Day 37. 1 Samuel 17: Giant-Killer Day 38. Psalm 19: Outdoor Lessons Day 39. 1 Samuel 20: Jonathan’s Loyalty Day 40. Psalm 27: Ups and Downs Day 41. 2 Samuel 6: King of Passion Day 42. 1 Chronicles 17: God’s House Day 43. Psalm 103: The Goodness of God Day 44. 2 Samuel 11: Adultery and Murder Day 45. 2 Samuel 12: Caught in the Act Day 46. Psalm 51: True Confession Day 47. Psalm 139: David’s Spiritual Secret Day 48. 1 Kings 3: Raw Talent Day 49. 1 Kings 8: High-water Mark Day 50. Psalm 84: Home Sweet Home Day 51. Proverbs 4: Life Advice Day 52. Proverbs 10: One-liners Day 53. Proverbs on Words: Verbal Dynamite Day 54. Song of Songs 2: Love Story Day 55. Ecclesiastes 3: A Time for Everything

The Northern Kingdom
Day 56. 1 Kings 17: The Prophets Day 57. 1 Kings 18: Mountaintop Showdown Day 58. 2 Kings 5: Double Portion Day 59. Joel 2: Word Power Day 60. Jonah 3–4: Beloved Enemies Day 61. Amos 4: Street-Corner Prophet Day 62. Hosea 1, 3: Parable of Love Day 63. Hosea 11: Wounded Lover Day 64. 2 Kings 17: Postmortem
The Southern Kingdom
Day 65. 2 Chronicles 20: Meanwhile in Jerusalem Day 66. Micah 6: Pollution Spreads Day 67. 2 Chronicles 30: Hezekiah’s Festival Day 68. Isaiah 6: Power behind the Throne Day 69. Isaiah 25: Eloquent Hope Day 70. 2 Chronicles 32: Battlefield Lessons Day 71. Nahum 1: Enemy Justice Day 72. Zephaniah 3: Rotten Ruling Class Day 73. 2 Kings 22: Boy Wonder Day 74. Jeremiah 2: National Adultery Day 75. Jeremiah 15: Balky Prophet Day 76. Jeremiah 31: Israel’s Future Day 77. Jeremiah 38: A Prophet’s Perils Day 78. Habakkuk 1: Debating God Day 79. Lamentations 3: Poet In Shock Day 80. Obadiah: No Room to Gloat
Starting Over
Day 81. Ezekiel 1: In Exile Day 82. Ezekiel 2–3: Toughening Up Day 83. Ezekiel 4: Write Large and Shout Day 84. Ezekiel 37: Resurrection Time Day 85. Daniel 1: Enemy Employers Day 86. Daniel 3: Ordeal by Fire Day 87. Daniel 5: Like Father, Like Son Day 88. Daniel 6: Daniel’s Longest Night Day 89. Ezra 3: Home at Last Day 90. Haggai 1: A Needed Boost Day 91. Zechariah 8: Raising Sights Day 92. Nehemiah 2: A Man for All Seasons Day 93. Nehemiah 8: Mourning into Joy Day 94. Esther 4: A Race’s Survival Day 95. Malachi 2: Low-grade Disappointment
Cries of Pain
Day 96. Job 1–2: Is God Unfair? Day 97. Job 38: God Speaks to Job Day 98. Job 42: Happy Ending Day 99. Isaiah 40: Who’s in Charge? Day 100. Isaiah 52: The Suffering Servant Day 101. Isaiah 53: Wounded Healer Day 102. Isaiah 55: The End of It All
A Surprising Messiah
Day 103. Luke 1: One Final Hope Day 104. Luke 2: No Fear Day 105. Mark 1: Immediate Impact Day 106. Mark 2: Signal Fires of Opposition Day 107. John 3: Late-Night Rendezvous Day 108. Mark 3: Miracles and Magic Day 109. Mark 4: Hard Soil Day 110. Mark 5: Jesus and Illness Day 111. Matthew 5: Inflammatory Word Day 112. Matthew 6: Sermon on the Mount Day 113. Matthew 13: Kingdom Tales Day 114. Mark 6: Contrast in Power Day 115. Luke 16: Of Two Worlds Day 116. Luke 12: Jesus on Money Day 117. Luke 18: Underdogs

Responses to Jesus
Day 118. Luke 15: Master Storyteller Day 119. John 6: Food that Endures Day 120. Mark 7: Poles Apart Day 121. Matthew 18: Out of Bondage Day 122. John 10: No Secrets Day 123. Mark 8: Turning Point Day 124. Mark 9: Slow Learners Day 125. Luke 10: Mission Improbable Day 126. Mark 10: Servant Leadership Day 127. Mark 11: Opposition Heats Up Day 128. Mark 12: Baiting Jesus Day 129. Mark 13: A Day to Dread Day 130. Mark 14: A Scent of Doom
Final Days
Day 131. John 14: One Final Meal Together Day 132. John 15: Vital Link Day 133. John 16: Grief into Joy Day 134. John 17: Commissioning Day 135. Matthew 26: Appointment with Destiny Day 136. Matthew 27: No Justice Day 137. Mark 15: Removing the Barrier Day 138. Matthew 28: A Rumor of Life Day 139. John 20: The Rumor Spreads Day 140. Luke 24: The Final Link
The Word Spreads
Day 141. Acts 1: Departure Day 142. Acts 2: Explosion Day 143. Acts 5: Shock Waves Day 144. Acts 9: About-face Day 145. Galatians 3: Legalism Day 146. Acts 16: Detour Day 147. Philippians 2: Downward Mobility Day 148. Acts 17: Mixed Results Day 149. 1 Thessalonians 3–4: Preparing for the End Day 150. 2 Thessalonians 2: Rumor Control Day 151. 1 Corinthians 13: The Love Chapter Day 152. 1 Corinthians 15: The Last Enemy Day 153. 2 Corinthians 4: Baked Dirt Day 154. 2 Corinthians 12: Boasting of Weakness
Paul’s Legacy
Day 155. Romans 3: Remedy Day 156. Romans 7: Limits of the Law Day 157. Romans 8: Spirit Life Day 158. Romans 12: When Christians Disagree Day 159. Acts 26: Unexpected Passage Day 160. Acts 27: Perfect Storm Day 161. Acts 28: Rome at Last Day 162. Ephesians 2: Prison Letter Day 163. Ephesians 3: Success Story Day 164. Colossians 1: Spanning the Gap Day 165. Philemon: A Personal Favor Day 166. Titus 2: Paul’s Troubleshooter Day 167. 1 Timothy 1: Growth Pains Day 168. 2 Timothy 2: Final Words
Vital Letters
Day 169. Hebrews 2: The Great Descent Day 170. Hebrews 11: What Is True Faith? Day 171. Hebrews 12: Marathon Race Day 172. James 1: Walk the Talk Day 173. 1 Peter 1: Converted Coward Day 174. 2 Peter 1: Hidden Dangers Day 175. Jude: Sounding the Alarm Day 176. 1 John 3: Merest Christianity Day 177. 2 and 3 John: Pesky Deceivers Day 178. Revelation 1: The Final Word Day 179. Revelation 12: Another Side of History Day 180. Revelation 21: An End and a Beginning

 

Overview of the Bible Reading Plan

Overview of the Bible Reading Plan

From our friends at Zondervan Publishing, here is a reading plan to give you a solid overview of the Bible. (Adapted fromt the NIV Student Bible. c.2002, 2011 by Zondervan. Used by permission. All rights reserved.)

 

Introduction to the Bible
This is a plan to begin reading the Bible. These two-week reading courses take you quickly into passages every Christian should know. Of the 1189 Bible chapters, why begin with these? First, they are frequently quoted or referred to elsewhere. Second, they are relatively easy to read and understand. Each section is designed to take 2 Weeks to complete so that at the end of 14-20 weeks you will have laid a solid foundation of Bible reading and will have set the discipline of personal time in the word.
1. Two Weeks on the Life and Teachings of Jesus
Day 1. Luke 1: Preparing for Jesus’ arrival. Day 2. Luke 2: The story of Jesus’ birth. Day 3. Mark 1: The beginning of Jesus’ ministry. Day 4. Mark 9: A day in the life of Jesus. Day 5. Matthew 5: The Sermon on the Mount. Day 6. Matthew 6: The Sermon on the Mount. Day 7. Luke 15: Parables of Jesus. Day 8. John 3: A conversation with Jesus. Day 9. John 14: Jesus’ final instructions. Day 10. John 17: Jesus’ prayer for his disciples. Day 11. Matthew 26: Betrayal and arrest. Day 12. Matthew 27: Jesus’ execution on a cross. Day 13. John 20: Resurrection. Day 14. Luke 24: Jesus’ appearance after resurrection.
2. Two Weeks on the Life and Teachings of Paul
Day 1. Acts 9: The conversion of Saul. Day 2. Acts 16: Paul’s Macedonian call and a jailbreak. Day 3. Acts 17: Scenes from Paul’s missionary journey. Day 4. Acts 26: Paul tells his life story to a king. Day 5. Acts 27: Shipwreck on the way to Rome. Day 6. Acts 28: Paul’s arrival in Rome. Day 7. Romans 3: Paul’s theology in a nutshell. Day 8. Romans 7: Struggle with sin. Day 9. Romans 8: Life in the Spirit. Day 10. 1 Corinthians 13: Paul’s description of love. Day 11. 1 Corinthians 15: Thoughts on the afterlife. Day 12. Galatians 5: Freedom in Christ. Day 13. Ephesians 3: Paul’s summary of his mission. Day 14. Philippians 2: Imitating Christ.
3. Two Weeks on the Old Testament
Day 1. Genesis 1: The story of creation. Day 2. Genesis 3: The origin of sin. Day 3. Genesis 22: Abraham and Isaac. Day 4. Exodus 3: Moses’ encounter with God. Day 5. Exodus 20: The gift of the Ten Commandments. Day 6. 1 Samuel 17: David and Goliath. Day 7. 2 Samuel 11: David and Bathsheba. Day 8. 2 Samuel 12: Nathan’s rebuke of the king. Day 9. 1 Kings 18: Elijah and the prophets of Baal. Day 10. Job 38: God’s answer to Job. Day 11. Psalm 51: A classic confession. Day 12. Isaiah 40: Words of comfort from God. Day 13. Daniel 6: Daniel and the lions. Day 14. Amos 4: A prophet’s stern warning.

1. Two Weeks on Becoming a Christian
Day 1. Genesis 3: The first sin creates a need. Day 2. Isaiah 52: Salvation prophesied. Day 3. Isaiah 53: The role of the suffering servant. Day 4. Luke 15: Three stories about God’s love. Day 5. John 3: Jesus explains “born again.” Day 6. John 10: The good shepherd. Day 7. Acts 8: Conversions spread outside the Jewish community. Day 8. Acts 26: Paul testifies of his conversion before a king. Day 9. Romans 3: God’s provision for sin. Day 10. Romans 5: Peace with God. Day 11. Galatians 3: Salvation unavailable by obeying the law. Day 12. Ephesians 2: New life in Christ. Day 13. 1 Peter 1: Future rewards of salvation. Day 14. 2 Peter 1: Making your salvation sure.

2. Two Weeks on Prayers of the Bible
Day 1. Genesis 18: Abraham’s plea for Sodom. Day 2. Exodus 15: Moses’ song to the Lord. Day 3. Exodus 33: Moses meets with God. Day 4. 2 Samuel 7: David’s response to God’s promises. Day 5. 1 Kings 8: Solomon’s dedication of the temple. Day 6. 2 Chronicles 20: Jehoshaphat prays for victory. Day 7. Ezra 9: Ezra’s prayer for the people’s sins. Day 8. Psalm 22: A cry to God for help. Day 9. Psalm 104: A prayer of praise. Day 10. Daniel 9: Daniel’s prayer for the salvation of Jerusalem. Day 11. Habakkuk 3: A prophet’s prayer of acceptance. Day 12. Matthew 6: The Lord’s prayer. Day 13. John 17: Jesus’ prayer for his disciples. Day 14. Colossians 1: Paul’s prayer of thanksgiving.

3. Two Weeks on the Holy Spirit
Day 1. Judges 14: The Spirit gives Samson strength. Day 2. 1 Samuel 10: King Saul’s experience. Day 3. Matthew 3:1–4:10: Role in Jesus’ baptism and temptation. Day 4. John 14: Jesus promises the Spirit. Day 5. John 16: The work of the Spirit. Day 6. Acts 2: The Spirit comes at Pentecost. Day 7. Acts 10: The Spirit guides Peter to accept Gentiles. Day 8. Romans 8: Christians’ victory in the Spirit. Day 9. 1 Corinthians 2: Wisdom from the Spirit. Day 10. 1 Corinthians 12: Gifts of the Spirit. Day 11. 1 Corinthians 14: Gifts of tongues and prophecy. Day 12. Galatians 5: Life in the Spirit. Day 13. Ephesians 4: Unity and gifts. Day 14. 1 John 4: Signs of the Spirit.

4. Two Weeks on Women of the Bible
Day 1. Genesis 2: Eve, the first woman. Day 2. Genesis 18: Sarah laughs at God’s promise. Day 3. Genesis 24: Rebekah’s marriage to Isaac. Day 4. Genesis 27: Rebekah, the manipulative mother Day 5. Judges 4: Deborah’s leadership frees her people. Day 6. Ruth 1: Ruth and Naomi’s deep friendship. Day 7. 1 Samuel 1: Hannah prays for a son. Day 8. 1 Kings 17: A poor widow and the prophet Elijah. Day 9. 1 Kings 21: Jezebel, an emblem of wickedness. Day 10. Esther 2: Esther is chosen as queen. Day 11. Esther 4: Esther’s courage at the risk of death. Day 12. Luke 1: Mary and Elizabeth receive great news. Day 13. Luke 2: Mary gives birth to Jesus. Day 14. John 11: Mary and Martha and their brother’s death.

5. Two Weeks on Men of the Old Testament
Day 1. Judges 6: God calls Gideon to rescue his people. Day 2. Judges 7: Gideon conquers his fears—and his enemies. Day 3. 1 Samuel 3: God calls young Samuel. Day 4. 1 Kings 3: Solomon is given wisdom. Day 5. 1 Kings 19: Elijah runs for his life. Day 6. 2 Kings 5: Elisha heals a powerful foreign general. Day 7. Isaiah 6: God calls the prophet Isaiah. Day 8. 2 Kings 18: King Hezekiah under military siege. Day 9. 2 Kings 19: Isaiah speaks God’s word to King Hezekiah. Day 10. 2 Chronicles 34: Josiah sets his nation back on course. Day 11. Nehemiah 2: Nehemiah courageously begins rebuilding a wall. Day 12. Jeremiah 38: Jeremiah, in prison, refuses to change his message. Day 13. Daniel 1: Daniel risks his life in captivity. Day 14. Daniel 5: Daniel’s word to participants in a royal orgy.

6. Two Weeks on Social Justice
Day 1. Exodus 3: God hears the cries of the slaves. Day 2. Leviticus 25: The Year of Jubilee, a time of economic revolution. Day 3. Ruth 2: A poor woman finds help. Day 4. 1 Kings 21: Elijah speaks to a land-grabbing, murderous king. Day 5. Nehemiah 5: Nehemiah demands justice for the poor. Day 6. Isaiah 5: Warning to fun-loving materialists. Day 7. Isaiah 58: Worship that God appreciates. Day 8. Jeremiah 34: Freedom for slaves. Day 9. Amos 2: Sins against God by his own people. Day 10. Amos 6: Warning to the complacent. Day 11. Micah 6: What the Lord requires. Day 12. Luke 3: John the Baptist tells how to prepare for Jesus. Day 13. Matthew 6: Jesus speaks on material things. Day 14. James 2: How to treat the rich and the poor.

7. Two Weeks on God and Nature
Day 1. Genesis 1: God creates the earth. Day 2. Genesis 2: God creates human beings. Day 3. Proverbs 8: Wisdom’s view of creation. Day 4. Genesis 7: God preserves the species. Day 5. Job 38: The greatness of nature. Day 6. Job 39: The wildness of nature. Day 7. Job 40: God’s mastery of nature. Day 8. Psalm 8: Praise for the Creator. Day 9. Psalm 98: Nature joins in the praise. Day 10. Psalm 104: God sustains the earth. Day 11. Isaiah 40: The ruler of all creation. Day 12. Romans 8: The “groanings” of our present state. Day 13. Isaiah 65: Preview of a restored earth. Day 14. Revelation 22: The end of history.
Further Two-Week Courses for Personal Study
Two weeks on Abraham, Isaac and Jacob: Genesis 12, 13, 15, 17, 18, 19, 22, 24, 27, 28, 29, 31, 32, 33.

Two weeks on Moses and the exodus: Exodus 2, 3, 4, 7, 12, 14, 16, 19, 32; Numbers 14; Deuteronomy 1, 2, 4, 31.

Two weeks on David: 1 Samuel 16, 17, 18, 20, 21, 22, 24; 2 Samuel 6, 7, 11, 12, 13, 15, 18.

Wash All The Sinners Away: The Flood Judgment

Wash All The Sinners Away: The Flood Judgment

Before we begin, I want to point out that we are all familiar with the Flood Narrative and in this lesson, we are looking more at the background and cause of the Flood Judgment.

Text: Genesis 6-9

Who are the players in this story?

  • Noah, a righteous man and preacher of righteousness
  • the Lord God
  • the “Sons of God,” who these are remains a mystery to this day. Some say they were the offspring of the righteous Seth while others think these are angels and perhaps fallen angels
  • The remainder of humanity

Words you need to know

bənê hāʼĕlōhîm (בְנֵי־הָֽאֱלֹהִים) the sons of Elohim (God)

There is no real consensus as to who these are. There are two major interpretations among scholars.

  1. The Offspring of the righteous line of Seth
  2. Fallen Angels: Early Christian writers such as Justin Martyr, Eusebius, Clement of Alexandria, Origen, and Commodianus believed that the “sons of God” in Genesis 6:1-4 were fallen angels who engaged in unnatural union with human women, resulting in the begetting of the Nephilim. Modern Christians have argued against this view by reasoning on Jesus‘ comment in Matthew 22:30 that angels do not marry, although it only refers to angels in heaven. Others saw them as descendants of Seth.

Saint Augustine subscribed to this view, based on the orations of Julius Africanus in his book City of God, which refer to the “sons of God” as being descendants of Seth (or Sethites), the pure line of Adam. The “daughters of men” are viewed as the descendants of Cain (or Cainites). Variations of this view was also received by Jewish philosophers.

As David Guzik points out,

The sons of God saw the daughters of men: It is more accurate to see the sons of God as either demons (angels in rebellion against God) or uniquely demon-possessed men, and the daughters of men as human women.

i. The phrase “sons of God” clearly refers to angelic creatures when it is used the three other times in the Old Testament (Job 1:6, 2:1, and 38:7). The translators of the Septuagint translated sons of God as “angels.” They clearly thought it referred to angelic beings, not people descended from Seth.

ii. Jude 6 tells us of the angels who did not keep their proper domain, but left their own habitation. Jude goes on (Jude 7) to tell us they sinned in a similar manner to these, having given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh. Here in Genesis 6, as in Sodom and Gomorrah, there was an unnatural sexual union.

iii. It is useless to speculate on the nature of this union. Whether it was brought about by something like demon possession, or whether angels have power permanently to assume the form of men is not revealed. But we should understand the occult is filled with sexual associations with the demonic, and there are those today who actively pursue such associations.

iv. Jude 6 also makes it clear what God did with these wicked angels. They are reserved in everlasting chains under darkness from the judgment of the great day. By not keeping their proper place, they are now kept in chains. Their sinful pursuit of freedom has put them in bondage.

v. 1 Peter 3:19-20 tells us Jesus went to these disobedient spirits in their prison and proclaimed His victory on the cross over them.

vi. An objection offered to this understanding is found in Matthew 22:30, where Jesus said angels neither marry nor are given in marriage; but Jesus never said angels were sexless, and He was also speaking about faithful angels (angels of God in heaven), not rebellious ones.

vii. From the book of 1 Enoch, which is not inspired scripture, but may still contain some accurate accounts: “And it came to pass that the children of men had multiplied that in those days were born unto them beautiful and comely daughters. And the angels, the children of heaven, saw and lusted after them, and said to one another: ‘Come, let us choose us wives from among the children of men and beget us children … [They] took unto themselves wives, and each chose for himself one, and they began to go unto them and to defile themselves with them, and they taught them charms and enchantments … And they became pregnant, and they bare great giants … And there arose much godlessness, and they committed fornication, and they were led astray, and became corrupt in all their ways.”

What happened

Approximately 1100 years (more specifically around 1056) after Adam’s ejection from the Garden, God looked and saw that man’s thoughts were continually evil and He was “sorry that He created man.” Why? What was happening on the earth that caused God to feel this way?

Looking to Matthew Henry for a moment:

The charge was exhibited and proved against them, v. 5. The evidence produced was incontestable. God saw it, and that was instead of a thousand witnesses. God sees all the wickedness that is among the children of men; it cannot be concealed from him now, and, if it be not repented of, it shall not be concealed by him shortly. Now what did God take notice of?

1. He observed that the streams of sin that flowed along in men’s lives, and the breadth and depth of those streams: He saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth. Observe the connection of this with what goes before: the oppressors were mighty men and men of renown; and, then, God saw that the wickedness of man was great. Note, The wickedness of a people is great indeed when the most notorious sinners are men of renown among them. Things are bad when bad men are not only honored notwithstanding their wickedness, but honored for their wickedness, and the vilest men exalted. Wickedness is then great when great men are wicked. Their wickedness was great, that is, abundance of sin was committed in all places, by all sorts of people; and such sin as was in its own nature most gross, and heinous, and provoking; it was committed daringly, and with a defiance of heaven, nor was any care taken by those that had power in their hands to restrain and punish it. This God saw. Note, All the sins of sinners are known to God the Judge. Those that are most conversant in the world, though they see much wickedness in it, yet they see but little of that which is; but God sees all, and judges aright concerning it, how great it is, nor can he be deceived in his judgment.

2. He observed the fountain of sin that was in men’s hearts. Any one might see that the wickedness of man was great, for they declared their sin as Sodom; but God’s eye went further: He saw that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually-a sad sight, and very offensive to God’s holy eye! This was the bitter root, the corrupt spring: all the violence and oppression, all the luxury and wantonness, that were in the world, proceeded from the corruption of nature; lust conceived them, Jam. 1:15. See Mt. 15:19.

(1.) The heart was naught; it was deceitful and desperately wicked. The principles were corrupt, and the habits and dispositions evil.

(2.) The thoughts of the heart were so. Thought is sometimes taken for the settled judgment or opinion, and this was bribed, and biased, and misled; sometimes it signifies the workings of the fancy, and these were always either vain or vile, either weaving the spider’s web or hatching the cockatrice’s egg.

(3.) The imagination of the thoughts of the heart was so, that is, their designs and devices were wicked. They did not do evil through mere carelessness, as those that walk at all adventures, not heeding what they do; but they did evil deliberately and designedly, contriving how to do mischief. It was bad indeed; for it was only evil, continually evil, and every imagination was so. There was no good to be found among them, no, not at any time: the stream of sin was full, and strong, and constant; and God saw it; see Ps. 14:1-3.

So, man was so corrupt, that God decided to destroy them. On a side note, here we see the Doctrine of Total Depravity  on full display in the Old Testament.

The Flood Narrative is one that we hear quite often and sometimes it is easy to be trite and to miss the cause of the Flood Judgment, that human society had become so corrupted and evil that their very existence was such an insult to a Holy God that their entire destruction was necessary.

Discussion Questions

  1. What parallels are visible between our society and the society of Noah?
  2. What does God expect from you in such a wicked world?

Final Thought

For the glory of God’s justice, and for warning to a wicked world, before the history of the ruin of the old world, we have a full account of its degeneracy, its apostasy from God and rebellion against him. The destroying of it was an act, not of an absolute sovereignty, but of necessary justice, for the maintaining of the honor of God’s government.

Baptist Distinctives

Baptist Distinctives

WHAT ARE THE EIGHT BAPTIST DISTINCTIVES?

These teachings may be remembered by associating them with the letters that form the word “BAPTISTS.”

Biblical Authority

The Bible is the final authority in all matters of belief and practice because the Bible is inspired by God and bears the absolute authority of God Himself. Whatever the Bible affirms, Baptists accept as true. No human opinion or decree of any church group can override the Bible. Even creeds and confessions of faith, which attempt to articulate the theology of Scripture, do not carry Scripture’s inherent authority.

2 Timothy 3:15–17; 1 Thessalonians 2:13; 2 Peter 1:20, 21

Autonomy of the Local Church

The local church is an independent body accountable to the Lord Jesus Christ, the head of the church. All human authority for governing the local church resides within the local church itself. Thus the church is autonomous, or self-governing. No religious hierarchy outside the local church may dictate a church’s beliefs or practices. Autonomy does not mean isolation. A Baptist church may fellowship with other churches around mutual interests and in an associational tie, but a Baptist church cannot be a “member” of any other body.

Colossians 1:18; 2 Corinthians 8:1–5, 19, 23

Priesthood of the Believer

“Priest” is defined as “one authorized to perform the sacred rites of a religion, especially as a mediatory agent between humans and God.” Every believer today is a priest of God and may enter into His presence in prayer directly through our Great High Priest, Jesus Christ. No other mediator is needed between God and people. As priests, we can study God’s Word, pray for others, and offer spiritual worship to God. We all have equal access to God—whether we are a preacher or not.

1 Peter 2:5, 9; Revelation 5:9, 10

Two Ordinances

The local church should practice two ordinances: (1) baptism of believers by immersion in water, identifying the individual with Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection, and (2) the Lord’s Supper, or communion, commemorating His death for our sins.

Matthew 28:19, 20; 1 Corinthians 11:23–32

Individual Soul Liberty

Every individual, whether a believer or an unbeliever, has the liberty to choose what he believes is right in the religious realm. No one should be forced to assent to any belief against his will. Baptists have always opposed religious persecution. However, this liberty does not exempt one from responsibility to the Word of God or from accountability to God Himself.

Romans 14:5, 12; 2 Corinthians 4:2; Titus 1:9


S
aved, Baptized Church Membership

Local church membership is restricted to individuals who give a believable testimony of personal faith in Christ and have publicly identified themselves with Him in believer’s baptism. When the members of a local church are believers, a oneness in Christ exists, and the members can endeavor to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

Acts 2:41–47; 1 Corinthians 12:12; 2 Corinthians 6:14; Ephesians 4:3

Two Offices

The Bible mandates only two offices in the church–pastor and deacon. The three terms—“pastor,” “elder,” and “bishop,” or “overseer”—all refer to the same office. The two offices of pastor and deacon exist within the local church, not as a hierarchy outside or over the local church.

1 Timothy 3:1–13; Acts 20:17–38; Philippians 1:1

Separation of Church and State

God established both the church and the civil government, and He gave each its own distinct sphere of operation. The government’s purposes are outlined in Romans 13:1–7 and the church’s purposes in Matthew 28:19 and 20. Neither should control the other, nor should there be an alliance between the two. Christians in a free society can properly influence government toward righteousness, which is not the same as a denomination or group of churches controlling the government.

Matthew 22:15–22; Acts 5:17–29

Master Outline Seven: Rewards

Master Outline Seven: Rewards

Outline Seven: Rewards

REWARDS

 

There is a vast difference in the doctrine of salvation for the lost, and the doctrine of rewards for the saved.  Salvation is “the gift of God, not of works” (Eph. 2:8, 9).  Salvation is received by faith in the finished work of the Lord Jesus Christ (John 3:36). Rewards are according to the works of the believer (Matt. 16:27).

 

A most revealing Scripture concerning rewards is found in 1 Cor. 3:8 -15.

First, every believer will be rewarded “according to his own labor” (verse 8).  We do not labor for salvation.

Second, “we are God’s fellow workers” (verse 9) – not for salvation, but for rewards.

Third, the believer is to build on the Lord Jesus Christ, “for no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ” (verse 11)

Fourth, the believer has a choice of two kinds of building materials: “gold, silver, precious stones” – this is building with eternal materials; or “wood, hay, straw” – this is building with temporal materials (verse 12) (2 Cor. 4:18 )

 

The believer who builds on Christ with eternal materials, “gold, silver, precious stones,” shall receive a reward.  Those who build on Christ with temporal materials, “wood, hay, straw,” will receive no reward.  The works of “wood, hay, straw” will be destroyed at the “judgment seat of Christ,” and he believer will suffer loss – not the loss of salvation, but the loss of rewards.

 

In the first year of my ministry, I set at the bedside of a dying friend.  As we talked of his home going, tears filled his eyes. Being young in the Lord, I thought he was afraid to die, and attempted to speak words of encouragement to him.  He said, “I am not afraid to die; I am ashamed to die.” He went on to say that Christ was his Savior, but he had lived for self, and now had to meet the Lord Jesus Christ empty handed. His life loomed up before him as “wood, hay, straw.”  He was “saved so as by fire.”

 

Rewards are called “crowns” in the New Testament.

 

1       The Crown of Life (James 1:12)

2       The Crown Imperishable (1 Cor. 9:24-27)

3       The Crown of Rejoicing (1 Thess. 2:19,20)

4       The Crown of Righteousness (2 Tim. 4:5-8 )

5       The Crown of Glory (1 Peter 5:2-4)

 

1.                The Crown of Life (James 1:12): 12) Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.

 

Notes:  This reward could be called the lover’s crown.  Upon examination of the above verse, we discover that the believer finds strength to overcome temptation and endure trials, through the love of God.  Paul said, “We also glory in tribulations.”  The question is, do we today glory in tribulations?  We can, only if the “love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit” (Rom 5:2-5). Without the love of God in the heart of the believer, trials can cause him to become bitter and critical and lose the “crown of life.”

 

All believers have eternal life (John 3:15, 16), but not all believers will be rewarded with the “crown of life.”  This crown will be given to those who are “faithful until death” (Rev 2:10). To receive the “crown of life” the believer must love the Lord more than his own life.  “For whoever desires to save his life (live for self) will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s (live for Christ at all cost) will save it” (Mark 8:35).  This reward will be given to those who live for Christ, and endure temptations, in the power of the love of God (1 Cor 10:13).

 

2.              The Crown Imperishable (1 Cor 9:24-27):  24) Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize?  Run in such a way that you may obtain it.  25) And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things.  Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown.  26) Therefore I run thus: not with ncertainty.  Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air.  27) But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.

 

Notes: Paul makes use of the Greek games to illustrate the spiritual race of the believer.  They ran to win a “perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown.”  No young man could contend in the games unless he was a Greek citizen, born of Greek parents. No unsaved person can participate in the services of the Lord for rewards; only the born of God are eligible (John 3:3)

 

Just as the athlete must deny himself many gratifications of he body, so the believer must say “I discipline my body and bring it into subjection” or he will become “disqualified.”  He will not loose his salvation, but he will lose the “imperishable crown.”

 

The Greek games had hard and fast rules for all participants.  The New Testament contains the rules for believers who would enter the spiritual race to win the “imperishable crown.”

 

(1).      The believer must deny self of anything that would weigh him down and hold him back (Heb. 12:1)

(2).      The believer must keep his eyes fixed on Christ, and not look to the right or the left (Heb. 12:2)

(3).      The believer must find strength in the Lord (Eph. 6:10-18 )

(4).      The believer must place his all upon the altar of the Lord (Rom. 12:1, 2)

(5).      The believer must, by faith, refuse anything that would impede spiritual progress (Heb. 11:24-29)

 

Do not be spiritual spectator.  Enter the race and run to win the “imperishable crown.”

 

3.                 The Crown of Rejoicing (1 Thess. 2:19,20):  19) For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing?  Is it not even you in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at His coming?

 

Notes:  The “crown of rejoicing” is the soul winner’s crown.  The greatest work you are privileged to do for the Lord is to bring others to knowledge of Christ as personal Savior.  The degree of you joy in heaven will determined by the souls you have had a part in bringing to Christ.  Paul tells the Thessalonian believers that they are his “hope, or joy or crown of rejoicing” now and when Jesus comes.

 

(1).            It is wise to win souls to Christ (Prov. 11:30 OT)

(2).            It is a work against sin to win souls to Christ (James 5:20)

(3).            It is a cause for joy in heaven to win souls to Christ (Luke 15:20)

(4).            Every soul winner will shine as the stars forever (Dan. 12:3 OT)

 

How can you win souls to Christ:

         Witness with your life; live that others may see Christ in you (2 Cor. 3:2 and Gal. 2:20)

         Witness with your mouth, trusting the Holy Spirit to give power to the spoken word (2 Cor. 9:6)

         Witness with tithes and offerings that others may preach Christ, and you will have “fruit (reward) that abounds to your account” (Phil. 4:15 and 2 Cor. 9:6)

God has promised that your labor will not be in vain in the Lord (1Cor. 15:58).  The soul winner will not rejoice alone – all of heaven will rejoice with him when he receives the “crown of rejoicing” (John 4:36)

 

4.            The Crown of Righteousness (2 Tim. 4:5-8):  5) But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.  6) For I am already being poured out as a drink offering and my departure is at hand. 7) I have fought the good fight.  I have finished the race.  I have kept the faith.  8 ) Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.

 

Notes:  The “crown of righteousness” is a reward, and it is not to be confused with the “righteousness of God” which the believer receives when he becomes a Christian; for at that time, the believer is to “become the righteousness of God in Him” 2 Cor. 5:21).  This saving righteousness is a gift to be accepted by the lost.  The “crown of righteousness” is a reward to be earned by the saved.  If the believer looks for, and loves the doctrine of the second coming of Christ, it will affect his whole life.  Look at the dynamic impact this truth had on the life of the apostle Paul.  He could say:

 

(1)   “I have fought the good fight” (verse 7, also 1 Cor. 15:32).  He fought a spiritual battle throughout his Christian life, and won.  He never surrendered to the enemies of righteousness (Eph 6:12).

 

(2)   “I have finished the race.”  He had a race to run.  And he did not detour the hard places; neither did he look back (Luke 9:61, 62). He finished his race with his eyes fixed on Christ (Phil. 1:6)

 

(3)   “I have kept the faith.”  He preached the “whole counsel of God” – never betraying any of the great doctrines (Acts 20:24-31). The apostle looked ahead to the “judgment seat of Christ” where the “crown of righteousness” will be given to those “who have loved His appearing.” How important it is for the believer to look with a heart of love for the second coming of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, that he may receive the “crown righteousness” (verse 8).

 

5.                The Crown of Glory (1 Peter 5:2-4):  4) and when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive crown of glory that does not fade away.

 

Notes:  The “crown of glory” is a special reward for the faithful, obedient, God-called pastor.  He will receive this reward when the “Chief Shepherd appears.”  It is eternal; it “does not fade away.” Every believer may share in the pastor’s “crown of glory.”  He who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward” (Matt. 10:41).  Support your faithful, God-called pastor by praying for him and encouraging him in the work of the Lord.  Under gird his ministry with God’s tithes and your offerings (Mal. 3:10 OT) giving freely of your time to the service of the Lord.  And God will reward you for supporting His chosen servant by allowing you to share in your pastor’s reward.  The pastor will earn this “crown of glory by:

 

(1)   Feeding the church.  He is to proclaim the Word of God without fear or favor; and, when necessary, he will “convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching” 2 Tim. 4:2-5).

 

(2)   Taking spiritual oversight of the church.  The pastor is responsible to God for the message preached to his people.  No pastor should preach to please the people; he is to please this Lord (Gal. 1:10)

 

(3)   Being an example to the church.  He is not to serve for the reward of money.  Yet, the church is responsible to care for his every material need (1 Tim. 5:18).  He is the spiritual leader, and not a dictator. He is to walk with God by faith.  “And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that does not fade away.”

Master Outline Number 6: Judgment

Master Outline Number 6: Judgment

Outline Six: Judgements

 

In the Scriptures, we are instructed to “rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15). This is most essential when studying the judgments. Do not endeavor to make all the judgments conform to the theory of one “general judgment.” The “general judgment” theory is the invention of religion, and is not taught in the Word of God. There are five separate judgments revealed in the Bible, and they differ as to time, place, and purpose. Yet, they all have one thing in common: the Lord Jesus Christ is the judge. (John 5:22)

 

Everyone – from Adam to the last man to be born on this earth – will stand before the Lord Jesus Christ to be judged.

 

1)     In the first judgment, the sins of the believers have already been judged in Christ on the cross.

2)     In the second judgment, the believer is to judge self, or be judged and disciplined by the Lord Jesus.

3)     In the Third judgment, all believers must appear at the “judgment seat of Christ” where their works are to be judged.

4)     In the forth judgment, all nations are to be judged at the Second Coming of Christ.

5)     In the fifth judgment, the wicked dead are to be judged at the great white throne.

 

1        Judgment of the Believers Sin (John 5:24):  24) “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life.

 

Notes:  In the above verse, our Lord tells us that the believer “shall not come into judgment.” (Matthew 10:15) Our sins were judged in Christ on Calvary and every believer “has passed out of death into life.”

1)     This is present salvation. Christ paid for our sins. He was judged in the believer’s stead. The believer will not come into judgment because:

2)     Jesus Christ paid the penalty, and on the grounds of His substitutional death, the believer is separated from his sins forever (Psalm 103:12)

3)     The sins of believer have been “blotted out” and God has promised that He “will not remember your sins” (Isaiah 43:25)

4)     Our Lord suffered for our sins, “the just for the unjust” that we might be saved and never come into judgment as sinners (1 Peter 3:18 )

 

The believer will never be condemned with the world, because Christ was condemned in his place. “For He has made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us” (2 Corinthians 5:21). Christ was made a curse for us on the cross and “has redeemed us from the curse of the law” (Galatians 3:13; Hebrews 9:26). The believer will not come into judgment because his sins have been purged (Hebrews 1:3).

 

2        Judgment of the Believers Self (1 Corinthians 11:31-32): 31) For if we would judge ourselves, we would not be judged. 32) But when we are judged, we are chastened by the Lord, that we may not be condemned with the world.

 

Notes:  The judgment of the believer’s self is more than judging things in the believer’s life. When the believer judges self, the good and the bad in his life come to light; and he will confess the bad (1 John 1:9) and forsake it (Isaiah 55:7) However, it is not enough just to judge sin in the believer; he must judge self.

1)     To judge self is to practice self-abnegation, for when the believer sees self as God sees him, he will renounce self. It is replacing the self life with the Christ life (Colossians 3:4). Christ is the believer’s life.

2)     To judge self is to deny self. This is more than self-denial. Self-denial is denying one’s self of the gratifications of the flesh. If we practice self-denial only, it is treating the symptom and not the cause. But when we deny self, we are attacking the cause, for in self (that is, in the flesh) “nothing good dwells” (Romans 7:18 ). To deny self is to take up our cross and follow Christ (Mark 8:34-38 ).

3)     To judge self is to lose the self life and find the Christ life (Galatians 2:20)

4)     To judge self is to no longer be self-conscious, but become Christ-Conscious (Matthew 28:20)

5)     To judge self is to no longer be self-controlled, but to become Christ controlled (Acts 9:6)

6)     To judge self is to no longer practice self-esteem, but to esteem others better than self (Philippians 2:3). To judge self is to become selfless.

 

3        Judgment of the Believers Works (2 Corinthians 5:10):  10) For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.

 

 

Notes: The believer’s works will be judged at the “judgment seat of Christ.” The term, “judgment seat of Christ” is found only twice in the Bible; but it is referred to many times. It is found in the above verse; also Romans 14:10. A careful reading of both verses with the context reveals that only believers will appear at the “judgment seat of Christ.” Their works will be judged, not their sins, for we have already seen that the sins of the believer were judged in Christ on Calvary, and “There is therefore no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1)

 

This judgment will take place “in the air,” following the first resurrection. “The dead in Christ shall rise first” (1 Thessalonians 4:14-18 ). There will be a thousand years between the resurrection of the saved and the unsaved(Revelation 20:4-5), and there will be a thousand years between the “judgment seat of Christ” where only saved will appear and the “great white throne judgment” where only the unsaved will appear.

 

At the judgment seat of Christ, the believer will give an account of himself to God. Therefore we should look to our own works, and not judge the works of others (Romans 14:10-13).

 

It is a most humbling thought to know that some day the believer will face all of his works – “good or bad.” Some will be ashamed (1 John 2:28 ) and “suffer loss” – not the loss of salvation, but the loss of rewards (1 Corinthians 3:11-15). So whatever you do, do it to the glory of God. (Colossians 3:17)

 

4        Judgment of Nations (Matthew 25:31-46) 31) “When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him then He will sit on the throne of His glory.  32) “All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them from one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep form the goats.33) “And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left.  34) “Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:  35) “for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in;  36) ‘I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’ 37) “Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed you, or thirsty and gave you drink?  38) “When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? 39)‘Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’  40) “And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly , I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to Me.’  41) Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels:42) ‘for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; 43) ‘I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.’  44) “Then they also will answer Him saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?’  45) “Then He will answer them, saying ;Assuredly, I say to you, in as much as you did not do it to one of these, you did not do it to Me.’ 46) “And these things will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

 

Notes:  This judgment is not the judgment of the great white throne (Revelation 20:11-15). A careful comparison of the two judgments will establish the following facts:

The judgment of the nations will take place “when the Son of Man comes in His glory.….Then He will sit on the throne of His glory.” The great white throne is never called “the throne of his glory” (Revelation 20:11-15)

1)     At this judgment, He will judge the living nations (Joel 3:11-16). At the white throne judgment, he will judge the wicked dead.

2)     At this judgment, there will be no resurrection of the dead. At the great white throne, the entire wicked are raised: “The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them……..” (Revelation 20:13)

3)     At this judgment, the judge is God “The King” judging the living nations in His earthly kingdom. At the great white throne, the judge is God, judging only the wicked dead.

4)     At this judgment, there are no books opened. At the great white throne, the “books were opened.”

5)     At this judgment, there are three classes judged: “sheep” – the saved (Revelation 7:9-17); “goats” – The unsaved (2 Thessalonians 1:7-10); “tribes” – the elect of Israel (Revelation 7:1-8, Romans 11:25-28 ). At the great white throne, there is only one class: “the dead.”

6)     At this judgment, the King gives the kingdom to those who have eternal life. At the great white throne, there are no saved and no kingdom; they are all “cast into the lake of fire.

 

5        Outline 6.5: Judgment of the Wicked (Revelation 20:11-15):  11) Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away.  And there was found no place for them.  12) And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life.  And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books.  13) The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them.  And they were judged, each one according to his works.  14) Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire.  This is the second death.  15) And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.

 

Notes: The great white throne judgment will follow the thousand year reign of Christ. This is the final judgment, and only the wicked dead are to be judged. According to (Revelation 20:5), the believers were resurrected a thousand years before this judgment, and their works were judged at the “judgment seat of Christ.” (2 Corinthians 5:10)

1)     At this judgment, the wicked dead will seek a hiding place from the face of the Lord Jesus Christ, the judge. But there is no hiding place.

2)     At this judgment, the “dead, great and small” will stand before God. But the greatness of the great will be of no value. “There is none who does good, no, not one”(Romans 3:12)

3)     At this judgment, the “book of life” will be opened. Why the “book of life” if there are no saved at this Judgment? The wicked will be shown that God in His mercy provided space for them in the “book of life,” so that they are without excuse. (Romans 1:18-20)

4)     At this judgment, the dead will be judged “according to their works.” God is a just God; and since there are degrees of punishment in hell, some will be punished more than others (Luke 12:42 , 48 )

5)     At this judgment, there will be no acquittal, no higher court to which the lost may appeal. It is lost, and lost forever; it is damned to all eternity, and that without hope. There is a Hades (Luke 16:19-31) and in Hades, there is no hope, no sympathy, no love; even the love of God does not extend beyond the portals of Hades.

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