Hearing God’s Voice from His Word
James 4:8 says, “Come near to God and he will come near to you.”
Take a moment and turn your attention to God. Tell God that you desire to trust and obey Him. Ask God to speak to you from His word.
Psalm of the Day
Psalm 148:1-4 Praise the Lord.
Praise the Lord from the heavens; praise him in the heights above.
Praise him, all his angels; praise him, all his heavenly hosts.
Praise him, sun and moon; praise him, all you shining stars.
Praise him, you highest heavens and you waters above the skies.
Read the entire Psalm
Praise the Lord. It is a command and not a suggestion for us. He is worthy of praise. Everything – heavens, seas, stars, angels, everything was made for Him. You were created for Him. Praising Him reminds us that He is supreme. Take a moment and praise Him for all that He has made.
2 Corinthians 2:12-3:6 – English Standard Version
12 When I came to Troas to preach the gospel of Christ, even though a door was opened for me in the Lord, 13 my spirit was not at rest because I did not find my brother Titus there. So I took leave of them and went on to Macedonia.
14 But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere. 15 For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing, 16 to one a fragrance from death to death, to the other a fragrance from life to life. Who is sufficient for these things? 17 For we are not, like so many, peddlers of God’s word, but as men of sincerity, as commissioned by God, in the sight of God we speak in Christ.
3 Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, as some do, letters of recommendation to you, or from you? 2 You yourselves are our letter of recommendation, written on our hearts, to be known and read by all. 3 And you show that you are a letter from Christ delivered by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.
4 Such is the confidence that we have through Christ toward God. 5 Not that we are sufficient in ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, but our sufficiency is from God, 6 who has made us sufficient to be ministers of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life. good news to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven, things into which angels long to look.
Having God’s Ear through Prayer
- Give thanks to God for His gifts and His goodness.
- Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal sin to you.
- Confess your sin to Him and receive forgiveness.
(1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sin He is faithful and just and will forgive our sins.”)
- Bring your personal requests to God.
(Psalm 62:8 “Pour out your heart before God”)
- Pray for someone in your small group.
- Join with others from River and pray for a team from our church reaching out to Muslims in Central Asia this week.
Living as God’s People by applying the Bible
Scripture Reflection from the Sermon
What is called The Great Commission is found in Matthew 28, Jesus said “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely, I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” This is the standing “order” for all believers of all times. It might be helpful to see this as the standing “opportunity” for all believers of all times. We have been given the great privilege to join God in what he is doing in the world to draw people to himself. This includes telling people the gospel message and helping people walk in obedience to Christ. We often call this evangelism and discipleship. Evangelism is investing in others and sharing the gospel with them in hopes that they would become Christians. Discipleship is investing in others and sharing the gospel with them in order for them to grow as Christians. In both cases we are to share the gospel because the gospel includes justification and sanctification. Justification is the work of God whereby he declares us “not guilty” and brings us into a saving relationship with himself. Sanctification is the ongoing process whereby we cooperate with God’s Spirit to grow in Christlikeness over time. Both justification and sanctification are aspects of the gospel message. So, our opportunity (and duty) to make disciples and teach them to obey is about living and sharing the gospel with others. When we invest in others in gospel ministry, we are unleashing spiritual life and growth in ourselves. We, not just those we share the gospel with, will experience Christ in deeper fashion.
Application: Who are you sharing the gospel with, both non-Christians and Christians? If no one, then ask God to help you begin to make this a regular part of your life. If you have specific people in mind, is there anything you can do differently or make more consistent in order to be more faithful and effective? If you have fears in regards to sharing the gospel, take them to God in prayer right now.