Monday, August 13, 2007

Learning to Love my Friend(s) 4

I was with the Upper Sinking congregation in Hickman County, Tennessee, last week in a 6-day Gospel Meeting. They had good attendance at each service. One of the highlights of the week was a children's class each night at 7:15. Out of a congregation of about 45, there were 13 children in the class. Most of them were present for every service. Joe Bates has recently started preaching and working with this congregation. They are enthusiastic about doing the Lord's work.

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Tonight, we had the fourth of the classes for elders, deacons, and spouses at Eddyville. These families are investing interest and energy in these studies. Each class lasts 2 1/2 hours. I appreciate and I am encouraged by the desire to learn and to be more effective that these leaders are showing.

Below is the outline of tonights class:

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My Friend Jesus Understands Me When I Am Tempted
Lesson 4

A. Why do you think Jesus was really tempted to do these things at this time in His life? Matthew 4:1-10
B. What is temptation?
1. Is it a sin to be tempted?
2. Is it a sin to think about sinning?
3. Have you ever been tempted to do anything you have never thought about doing?
4. Is it a sin to want to sin?
5. Have you ever been tempted to do anything you did not want to do? James 1:13-15; Matthew 5:28
6. What sacrifices might one have to make to overcome temptation? Matthew 5:29,30
C. How can I know whether I am thinking about sinning as Moses or Jesus did (being tempted) or whether I am already sinning?
1. Am I looking at all known choices and their consequences?
2. Am I looking for truth or an excuse?
3. Am I being honest with myself? Psalm 51:6; Psalm 139:23,24

A. Have I given myself permission to look at more than one choice and be confused? Hebrews 11:24-27
1. Did Moses think about making the right choice (obeying and honoring God and His will)?
2. Did Moses think about sinning (making the wrong choice)?
a. How long was it from the time that Moses “became of age”, leaving his place as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, until he led the people of God out of Egypt? Acts 7:20-35; Acts 7:23,30
b. How enthusiastic was Moses, even after this period of time to obey God, face Pharaoh, and lead the Israelites out of Egypt? Exodus 3,4
c. What do you learn from Moses and his decision-making process?
B. Evaluate these statements in helping people to deal with temptation:
1. “What you need to do is just forget about this temptation, not think about it any more, and that will solve your problem.”
2. “Many people sin, not because they think about sinning, but because they do not think about sinning enough.”
C. Is this a candy decision or a car decision?

A. What should I expect from a true friend during temptation?
1. Condemnation that I should ever think of doing the wrong thing?
2. Telling me I cannot do what I am thinking about doing?
3. Agreement with whatever I wanted to do?
4. Detailed instructions on what to think and how to act?
5. Something else?
B. How can I be a friend like Jesus to someone who is experiencing temptation? Hebrews 2:17,18

Conclusion: Thinking about the next class: My Friend Jesus Understands Me When I Am Sad.
A. Be prepared not to enjoy or necessarily “feel good” preparing for or participating in this class.
1. How did Jesus learn obedience? Hebrews 5:8,9
2. How did Jesus describe the process of following Him? Luke 9:23,24
B. Think about a loss or losses you have had in your life and how you have or have not experienced different stages of grief.

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