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 104:5-9 He (God) established the earth on its foundations;
it will never be shaken.
6 You covered it with the deep
as if it were a garment;
the water stood above the mountains.
7 At your rebuke the water fled;
at the sound of your thunder they hurried away—
8 mountains rose and valleys sank—
to the place you established for them.
9 You set a boundary they cannot cross;
they will never cover the earth again.
Read the Entire Psalm
God is in control of nature. This portion of Psalm 104 is reflecting on the flood. The Lord established the earth and He brought about a flood exercising judgment on the people of the earth. Nature bows to His will. Praise God for His control of nature.
1 John 4:7-21 – English Standard Version
7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. 8 Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. 9 In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. 10 In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12 No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us.
13 By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. 14 And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 16 So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. 17 By this is love perfected with us, so that we may have confidence for the day of judgment, because as he is so also are we in this world. 18 There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love. 19 We love because he first loved us. 20 If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. 21 And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother.
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 FCA. Ask God to use Keith to encourage and challenge college athletes and coaches to walk faithfully with Jesus.
Living as God’s People by applying the Bible
Scripture Reflection from the Sermon
John 8:1 Then the scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman caught in adultery, making her stand in the center. “Teacher,” they said to him, “this woman was caught in the act of committing adultery. In the law Moses commanded us to stone such women. So, what do you say?” They asked this to trap him, in order that they might have evidence to accuse him. Jesus stooped down and started writing on the ground with his finger. When they persisted in questioning him, he stood up and said to them, “The one without sin among you should be the first to throw a stone at her.” 8 Then he stooped down again and continued writing on the ground. 9 When they heard this, they left one by one, starting with the older men. Only he was left, with the woman in the center. 10 When Jesus stood up, he said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” 11 “No one, Lord,” she answered. “Neither do I condemn you,” said Jesus. “Go, and from now on do not sin anymore.
Jesus neither condemned this woman, nor did he accept her sin. He forgave her and he commanded her to go and sin no more. We might be tempted to think that Jesus is unaware of what modern therapists might know. Why didn’t he pause to consider her prior trauma? Why didn’t he think about the fact that one of the very men standing there might have been someone she had slept with? By telling her to go and sin no more, was he blaming her for her adultery? If so, isn’t this wrong? First of all, let’s get one thing straight: Jesus is the smartest human who has ever lived. He literally made this woman’s body (mind) and her soul. He knows humans in the deepest way possible. Now to be sure, he didn’t tell her to stop sinning until all her accusers had slithered away; he was not trying to shame her. Jesus wasn’t concerned at that point with the backstory on her present condition. The backstory is relevant when we are trying to understand and help people, but it wasn’t pertinent for Jesus at that point in time. Her greatest problem was her sin, and regardless of who else was involved in her sin, it was her sin and so it was her problem. Jesus came to solve this very big problem; he came to deal with our sin. He showed her love when he forgave her, and he showed her love when he commanded her to stop sinning. Jesus speaks the same two-part message to you today. He is ready to forgive your sin. Are you ready to go and sin no more?