Will You Serve Him? – 1 Corinthians 10

Will You Serve Him? – 1 Corinthians 10

Read 1 Corinthians 10

 

The beginning of this chapter recalls the Israelites’ time in the wilderness. Even though God provided all their needs and showed time and time again that He was with them, they chose to worship idols and give in to their evil desires, rather than serve and obey God. Paul issues a harsh warning to believers to “not crave evil things as they [the Israelites] did, or worship idols as some of them did” (1 Cor. 10:6-7, NLT).

God takes sin very seriously. He is a loving and gracious God, but He is also holy and does not tolerate sin. This is why He sent Jesus to earth to die, so that we could live free from wages of sin that lead to death (Romans 6:23) and have our relationship with Him restored. However, once you have accepted God’s gift of forgiveness, sin does not cease to exist. Each of us wake up every day with a choice: will we serve God or serve fleshly desires? Perhaps you have sin in your life that you need to confess to Him. Take a moment to do that right now.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, help me to remember the sacrifice Jesus made so that I could have an abundant life, free from the weight of sin. Thank you for your Holy Spirit working inside me. Thank you that I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me. In Jesus’ name, amen!

 

Samantha Rasch

 

Doubting God’s Promises – Hebrews 3

Doubting God’s Promises – Hebrews 3

Read Hebrews 3

 

Have you ever looked at the people of Israel while reading Exodus and wondered, “ How can they keep being that dumb?” It almost feels like they were purposely absent minded about the last great thing the Lord had done for them every time some sort of inconvenience stood in their way. This problem of unbelief in God and what he had said is not something so foreign to us, in fact we operate in an extremely similar fashion.

How many times can we find ourselves doubting the promises of God? Not only that, how many times do we find ourselves at a complete stand-still because we do not believe that God’s plan could taking place in our lives? As Hebrews 3:19 states, “So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.” God had placed a great blessing before them, and they saw it as unattainable. We sabotage our walks with Christ by simply not saying, “Yes,” to the blessings he has before us. And many times we would even go as far to say that we were better off in our spiritual slavery.

Look back at your life and some of the crossroads you’ve come to. Has unbelief kept you from entering into the blessings of the Lord? Or, has blatant fear of failure kept you from pursuing what God may have for you?

 

Mitchell Ressell

Shema – Mark 12

Shema – Mark 12

Read Mark 12

Listen. That’s what the Hebrew word “shema” means. It’s the first word of a prayer from Deuteronomy in the Old Testament. Jewish people having been praying this morning and evening for millennia. Over the years the entire prayer came to be known as “the Shema”. In Hebrew, the word has stronger connotation than simply hearing. To “shema” is to listen and obey.

In Mark 12, Jesus quotes the Shema to a scribe who asks which of Moses’ commandments was the most important of all. Jesus adds to the prayer by quoting another of Moses’ teachings in the book of Leviticus. He says the most important command is to love God with all that you are, and to love your neighbor as yourself. The scribe agrees on this point, and Jesus replies, “you are not far from the kingdom of God”.

Often Jesus characterizes the Scribes and Pharisees as, “having ears to hear, but they do not listen”. When Jesus tells the scribe ‘you are not far from the kingdom of God’, he is saying – you have heard the command to love, but you are not DOING it. The Shema is a prayer that most Jesus followers are very familiar with today. We believe it is foundational to being a disciple. And yet…I wonder if we actually hear it. Would Jesus also say to us, “you are not far from the kingdom of God? You listen, but you do not obey”.

Today – let’s ask for God’s help to actually love Him and others? Let’s Shema the Shema 🙂

— Kent Liles

No “Buts” – Exodus 4

No “Buts” – Exodus 4

Read Exodus 4

 

God has called you for a greater purpose.  You will need to spend some time in prayer to find it, but He has a plan for you!  The question is, will you answer His call and trust it, or will you spend your time saying “but”?  

Moses gave this excuse: ‘But suppose they will not believe me or listen to my voice; suppose they say, “The Lord has not appeared to you.’ ”

 

…but I don’t have the credentials

…but I’m young

…but I’m old

…but I’m too busy

 

When do the “buts” stop? The enemy wants us to believe the “buts”; God wants us to follow His perfect plan for us. Press the “easy button” and let God be your guide. Maybe you feel lead to serve in ministry in some way, and feel inadequate.  God can use that – He made need your inexperience to reach someone who would be overwhelmed by someone with more experience.  You might feel that you just can’t find the time.  God will increase your available time if you follow His call on your life. God provided Aaron when Moses felt he was “not eloquent… and slow of speech and slow of tongue”.  Aaron would be the one to speak Moses’ God-given words.  God will provide the way.  No more excuses, no more “buts”.  

Father, I pray that as a church we would listen and receive the call on our hearts from you.  Whether it be salvation, serving, forgiveness or grace, we would have an desire to respond to you.  Give us the courage to follow you, to step out of our comfort zones and to stretch ourselves in ways we might never have imagined. Thank you for loving us, Amen.

 

Jamie Twaddell

Who am I? – Exodus 3

Who am I? – Exodus 3

Read Exodus 3

Who am I? That is the question that Moses asks God after God speaks to him from the bush. The God of the universe, speaking through fire, just commanded Moses to do something and Moses’ response in the ESV is, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the children of Israel out of Egypt?”

When I read this, my first reaction is to just scream at Moses. Something like, “ARE YOU KIDDING ME? GOD JUST SPOKE TO YOU THROUGH FIRE AND THE FIRST THING YOU WANT TO DO IS QUESTION HIM?” But if I take a moment to reflect on myself, I realize that Moses isn’t being crazy. He’s just being human.

Now I have never been spoken to by God through a burning bush, but I have felt the strong urge of the Holy Spirit leading me to something that didn’t make sense. I think of the first time I stumbled upon Grace Church. I felt compelled to fill the application out for the summer internship, but the whole time in my mind I was telling myself I wasn’t qualified. Who am I that a church of thousands of people would want me around? I was fresh out of college and had no idea what God was about to do. Thankfully for Moses and myself, God’s plan was greater than our doubt.

What might God be asking you to do that seems crazy? Are you willing to follow even in your doubt?

— Jake Ikerd