Tag Archives: bible

The Seek God Challenge Day 26

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THE GOSPEL IS OUR ONLY HOPE

(THE SIN PROBLEM)

READ

Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness? But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness. I am speaking in human terms, because of your natural limitations. For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness leading to sanctification. For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness.

-Romans 6:16-20

Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin.”

-John 8:34

In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.

-2 Corinthians 4:4

They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart.

-Ephesians 4:18

Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned …

-Romans 5:12

THINK

In the first three chapters of the Bible we watch God create a perfect world where humans and God walk together in sweet fellowship and then in an instance humans disobey God and bring sin and death into the world. Our passages today help us better see why, as a result of this, it is huge in our understanding that the Gospel is our only hope.

The Bible tells us clearly in both Romans 6:16-20 and, from Jesus Himself, in John 8 that we are slaves in sin. What comes to mind when you hear the word slavery? Could slaves just choose freedom? Could they just will their way out of slavery? Seeing the comparison what does that tell us about our condition concerning sin?

Likewise it gets worse and we read on to see that we aren’t only slaves to our sin but in fact we are dead. (Romans 5:12)

 What can dead men do about their condition? Fortunately God has not left us without a way out of death, think about in your life if you were physically dying, and someone you knew possessed the knowledge to restore you into life. Even better life than you experienced before you nearly died. How desperate would you be for that life? In the same way shouldn’t our knowledge of being born into slavery and death change how we reach out to this generation around us? Why is this most important?

PRAY

These thoughts and prayers are just a guide to get you started in your conversation with God. Think of them as conversation starters rather than a check list to quickly pray.

Acknowledge your sin before the Lord today.

Confess your failures to God and dwell on the fact that alone we are helpless

DO

Take your list from a few days ago and contact another member in the same way you did the first name. Just let them know that you are praying for them. Then do it.

 Download the guide here

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The Seek God Challenge Day 25

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THE GOSPEL IS OUR ONLY HOPE

(THE CHARACTER OF GOD)

READ

For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities— all things were created through him and for him.

-Colossians 1:16

He will render to each one according to his works: to those who by patience in welldoing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life; but for those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, there will be wrath and fury. There will be tribulation and distress for every human being who does evil, the Jew first and also the Greek, but glory and honor and peace for everyone who does good, the Jew first and also the Greek. For God shows no partiality.

-Romans 2:6-11

“I, I am the LORD, and besides me there is no savior.”

 -Isaiah 43:11

“But I am the LORD your God from the land of Egypt; you know no God but me, and besides me there is no savior.”

-Hosea 13:4

THINK

We know there are depths to God that we will never grasp or understand, but we have been given pictures of who God is through His Word. Colossians 1:16 gives us the picture that God is our what?

It also shows us (see the last three words) about our relationship to him. What does it tell us?

Romans 2:6-11 lets us know that we will be held accountable for our actions and will receive based on our seeking. What is granted to those who seek good things?

We see the picture that God is our creator and we were created for Him, and that He is our just judge and finally in Isaiah 43:11 and Hosea 13:4 we see that we need Him because He is our what?

PRAY

These thoughts and prayers are just a guide to get you started in your conversation with God. Think of them as conversation starters rather than a check list to quickly pray.

Thank the Lord that He created you for a purpose and that you belong to Him.

Thank Him that He is a righteous judge and treats us mercifully when we do not deserve it.

Thank Him that He alone is our salvation.

DO

Wrestle with how you should respond to those aspects of God today. It may be in a song, or a poem or a picture, etc. Just respond to God.

Download the guide here

The Seek God Challenge Day 22

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THE WORD MUST BE SHARED

READ

“Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction.” -2 Timothy 4:2

THINK

Paul’s final instruction to his apprentice Timothy is to “preach the word” what images come to your mind when you hear that phrase?

We often think that it is simply the job of paid staff at churches or other Christian ministries to preach the word however; the Bible calls us to share. What difficulties come as a result of sharing the word in your life?

What fears are there that keeps you from sharing God’s word with others?

PRAY

These thoughts and prayers are just a guide to get you started in your conversation with God. Think of them as conversation starters rather than a check list to quickly pray.

Pray that God will help erase the misconceptions about sharing His word

Pray that the Lord will create a Spirit of boldness which will lead you to sharing God’s word with others.

DO

Share with someone today, something you’ve recently read in God’s word.

Download the guide here

The Seek God Challenge Day 21

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THE WORD EQUIPS US

READ

“17 so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

-2 Timothy 3:17

 “11 So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers,12 to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.”                                                                                                    – Ephesians 4:11-13

THINK

Paul tells us multiple places that the Word of God equips us, that is it gives us the tools necessary to live like Christ. What are some ways that your life is different than Jesus’?

To get a good picture of equipping think of football. In order to play the game successfully you have to have the right equipment; a helmet, pads, a ball. Without the tools required to play you cannot succeed at football. Likewise without the Word of God you cannot succeed in knowing God and or sharing God. What are some examples you can think of for where the Bible equips? What are the benefits of being equipped?

The Ephesians passage tells us that Jesus “gave the apostles, the prophets”… etc. “to equip his people for works of service” this is describing areas of Christian leadership and how they may aid in the equipping of followers of Christ. Knowing that the Word of God must be central in equipping Christians what must these leaders be centered on in their instruction and leadership? That being the case what becomes in important in who and what we allow to teach us? How do you protect yourself from those who do not hold the Bible as central and important?

 

PRAY

These thoughts and prayers are just a guide to get you started in your conversation with God. Think of them as conversation starters rather than a check list to quickly pray

Pray that God will give you a desire to become an equipped follower of Christ

Pray that God will help you devote yourself to the Word of God so that you may become equipped and be able to equip others

DO

Knowing that we need to be equipped by the Word and then aid in the equipping of other believers, find a Christian friend and talk to them about the importance of being equipped by the Word of God.

Download the guide here

The Seek God Challenge Day 20

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THE WORD TRANSFORMS US

READ

“16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,17 so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”                                   -2 Timothy 3:16-17

“2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”                  -Romans 12:2

THINK

We see that Paul is telling Timothy of the many things that the Word of God will do (2 Tim. 3:16), and training in righteousness is a phrase that may not make immediate sense to us. What do you believe that it means?

Matt mentions that “God’s Word is not just given to us for information. It’s given us for transformation.” How does this kind of transformation take place in our lives?

Paul warns the church at Rome (Romans 12:2) against becoming like “the pattern of this world, “ and then tells them to be transformed by the renewing of your mind” How can you renew your mind? If we begin to gain the mind of Jesus how will that transform our lives?

PRAY

These thoughts and prayers are just a guide to get you started in your conversation with God. Think of them as conversation starters rather than a check list to quickly pray.

Pray that you can renew your mind today to become more like Christ

Pray that you will devote yourself to the Word of God so that it will begin to transform you into the image of God

DO

Renewing your mind starts with letting go of the things that consume us in this world. Spend a few moments sitting with your hands closed in front of you, and as you sit there imagine putting all your stress, and hurts, and even goals and desires into your closed hands. Then talk with God and ask Him to help you let go of these things and begin to renew your mind and focus on Him then open them and imagine God taking all of that from you.

Begin to memorize Philippians 4:8 so that you can bring that to your mind when you are tempted to or find yourself picking those worldly things back up.

“8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things” –Philippians 4:8

Download the guide here

The Seek God Challenge Day 19

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THE WORD SAVES US

READ

”8 But what does it say? “The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,” that is, the message concerning faith that we proclaim:9 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.11 As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.”12 For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him,13 for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”   -Romans 10:8-13

THINK

We see that Paul says in verse 11, “As Scripture says” we see that our very knowledge of salvation comes from the Word of God. Why do you think we don’t devote ourselves to the Word when such a life changing truth was found in it?

Where did your salvation knowledge originate? Was it at church at home? Have you thought about where did they get their information?

Have you ever desired to know more about something? Have you ever dug in and really researched something you were passionate about? If you were to seek after God in this way and dig through His word, what might be the result in your life?

PRAY

These thoughts and prayers are just a guide to get you started in your conversation with God. Think of them as conversation starters rather than a check list to quickly pray.

Give thanks to the Lord for His salvation, and pray Psalm 96 to the Lord today

Pray that the truth of salvation would not be the end all of our searching the word, but rather a jumping off point into seeking deeper truth

DO

Time to jump out there; tell someone about the Lord’s salvation today.

Download the guide here

The Seek God Challenge Day 18

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THE WORD LEADS TO DEEP COMMITMENT

READ

“32 And he caused all that were present in Jerusalem and Benjamin to stand to it. And the inhabitants of Jerusalem did according to the covenant of God, the God of their fathers.33 And Josiah took away all the abominations out of all the countries that pertained to the children of Israel, and made all that were present in Israel to serve, even to serve the Lord their God. And all his days they departed not from following the Lord, the God of their fathers.”

-2 Chronicles 34:32-33

THINK

We see Josiah take a kingdom from the worst condition possible, and through his seeking of God and the discovery of the word he leads them to this place of commitment. What is the difference between hearing the word and being committed to the word?

What lasting effect did the commitment of Josiah have on the people around him?

The disciplined pursuit of God that was introduced lasted “all his days”, what do you think was different than generations before?

Why do you think the people willingly pledged to serve the Lord under Josiah’s leadership? What lessons can we apply to our own lives in regards to our influence on those we encounter throughout the day?

PRAY

These thoughts and prayers are just a guide to get you started in your conversation with God. Think of them as conversation starters rather than a check list to quickly pray.

Pray that the message of the Lord will ignite our hearts to passionately commit to following God wherever He may send us.

Pray that our deep commitment to Christ will not be something that is quick lived and fleeting, but will be something that will not only transform us but those around us.

DO

Rank your commitment level in response to the following questions:

My walk with God is a priority….

1 2 3 4 5

Not Committed at all Very Committed

My Desire to follow God is…

1 2 3 4 5

Not Committed at all Very Committed

When I read the Bible I apply it to my life…

1 2 3 4 5

Not Committed at all Very Committed

Download the guide here

The Seek God Challenge Day 17

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THE WORD LEADS TO DEEP CONVICTION

READ

“29 Then the king called together all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem.30 He went up to the temple of the Lord with the people of Judah, the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the priests and the Levites—all the people from the least to the greatest. He read in their hearing all the words of the Book of the Covenant, which had been found in the temple of the Lord.31 The king stood by his pillar and renewed the covenant in the presence of the Lord—to follow the Lord and keep his commands, statutes and decrees with all his heart and all his soul, and to obey the words of the covenant written in this book.”   – 2 Chronicles 34:29-31

“1 On the twenty-fourth day of the same month, the Israelites gathered together, fasting and wearing sackcloth and putting dust on their heads.2 Those of Israelite descent had separated themselves from all foreigners. They stood in their places and confessed their sins and the sins of their ancestors.3 They stood where they were and read from the Book of the Law of the Lord their God for a quarter of the day, and spent another quarter in confession and in worshiping the Lord their God.”                                                           – Nehemiah 9:1-3

THINK

At this point Josiah had already purified the land of idols, and had begun work on the temple, but the hearts of the people have no reason to change apart from a King’s order, what reason do they have now? What’s the difference in motivation of obeying God, and obeying man?

We see both personal confession (by ourselves), and corporate confession (with other believers) in this passage. How difficult would it be to participate in public confession among your Christian friends at church? Why do you think that’s the case?

The word brings conviction because it is the standard which we are called to live by, do you read the Bible this way?

PRAY

These thoughts and prayers are just a guide to get you started in your conversation with God. Think of them as conversation starters rather than a check list to quickly pray.

Pray that the word of God will bring conviction to your life, and that the places that are not in line with God’s scripture will be clearly revealed so that we can correct them

Pray that we will welcome the discipline of God and not flee his word for fear of feeling ashamed of our sin

DO

Stop now and ask the Holy Spirit to show you the things you need to confess to the Lord today, as soon as they pop into your mind, confess them to God out loud.

Download the guide here

The Seek God Challenge Day 16

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WE ARE UNSTOPPABLE WITH THE

WORD OF GOD

READ

14 While they were bringing out the money that had been taken into the temple of the Lord, Hilkiah the priest found the Book of the Law of the Lord that had been given through Moses.15 Hilkiah said to Shaphan the secretary, “I have found the Book of the Law in the temple of the Lord.” He gave it to Shaphan.

16 Then Shaphan took the book to the king and reported to him: “Your officials are doing everything that has been committed to them.17 They have paid out the money that was in the temple of the Lord and have entrusted it to the supervisors and workers.”18 Then Shaphan the secretary informed the king, “Hilkiah the priest has given me a book.” And Shaphan read from it in the presence of the king.

19 When the king heard the words of the Law, he tore his robes.20 He gave these orders to Hilkiah, Ahikam son of Shaphan, Abdon son of Micah, Shaphan the secretary and Asaiah the king’s attendant:21 “Go and inquire of the Lord for me and for the remnant in Israel and Judah about what is written in this book that has been found. Great is the Lord’s anger that is poured out on us because those who have gone before us have not kept the word of the Lord; they have not acted in accordance with all that is written in this book.”

-2 Chronicles 34:14-21

THINK

We see Josiah’s response to the reading of God’s word, why does he respond this way?

Different things in the Bible cause us to respond in different ways, what different things have you experienced as a result of the Word?

The Word should always require a response. Why do you think people either read the word and don’t respond or fail to even read the word? What about in your own life do you fall into one of those two categories(read & not respond or not even read)? Why or why not?

PRAY

These thoughts and prayers are just a guide to get you started in your conversation with God. Think of them as conversation starters rather than a check list to quickly pray.

Pray that we will be like Josiah in that we will treat the word of the Lord as importantly as we should.

Pray that when we devote ourselves to the word that we won’t stop at simply reading but we will be moved to action in response to the word.

DO

Look at these two passages of scripture and look for the appropriate response;

Philippians 4:4

1 Thessalonians 5:18

Download the guide here

The Seek God Challenge Day 9

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BECAUSE HOLINESS MATTERS TO GOD,

HOLINESS MATTERS TO ME


READ

“and in the twelfth year he began to purge Judah and Jerusalem of the high places, the Asherim, and the carved and the metal images.4 And they chopped down the altars of the Baals in his presence, and he cut down the incense altars that stood above them. And he broke in pieces the Asherim and the carved and the metal images, and he made dust of them and scattered it over the graves of those who had sacrificed to them.5 He also burned the bones of the priests on their altars and cleansed Judah and Jerusalem.6 And in the cities of Manasseh, Ephraim, and Simeon, and as far as Naphtali, in their ruins all around,7 he broke down the altars and beat the Asherim and the images into powder and cut down all the incense altars throughout all the land of Israel. Then he returned to Jerusalem.”

-2 Chronicles 34:3-7

THINK

If Josiah would have followed in the footsteps of his ancestors, his job would most likely have been much easier. Why do you think that instead of just doing business as usual he instead took on the status quo and began to purge the land of idols and false gods?

Josiah was not compromising even to the point of “He also burned the bones of the priests on their altars and cleansed Judah and Jerusalem.” Why do you think that he went to that kind of extreme? Does holiness really require these kinds of sacrifices?

Verse 7 tells us that it wasn’t until he had “broke down the altars…throughout all the land of Israel. Then he returned to Jerusalem.” Why do you think he didn’t just make a decree and sit in the palace and wait for it to be accomplished? What does this tell us about holiness in our own lives, does God want us to just get rid of the surface things? Or does he want us to not rest until the sin is completely removed from our lives?

PRAY

These thoughts and prayers are just a guide to get you started in your conversation with God. Think of them as conversation starters rather than a check list to quickly pray.

Because holiness matters to God, holiness matters to me. This statement should most likely bring some conviction in our lives. Are there places in your life that aren’t holy?

Ask God to show you all those places in your life that contain sin, take a piece of paper and pen and write those down. Take your time and be still and listen, write down every thought that comes in your mind during this time.

Holiness requires sacrifice and intensity, and a thorough examination of all the land.

Take the list that you’ve made and as you read over it, ask God to give you a plan to begin to bring holiness into your life.

DO

Take your list and circle the area of your life that you are determined to bring holiness too immediately. What has to change, be cut out, or move?

Download the guide here