Do you know what our spiritual mirror is? Do you know how to use it to help in the confession of sin?
The confession of sin is one of the most important things which results from true repentance.
Believers who do not confess their sins in detail are guilty of half hearted confession.
Read Proverbs 28:13-A half-hearted confession leaves sin covered up
We must tell God in detail of the things we failed to do.
But it is also possible to exaggerate our sin. Those who make this mistake often confess the same sin over and over, with out ever feeling forgiven. One of the reasons why these believers carry such a burden around with them is that they have not learned to accept the words of the Bible. (1 John 1:9)
We do not need to feel forgiven in order to experience forgiveness. Forgiveness must be received by faith.
Read and underline in green the following references in your Bible: Proverbs 28:13, Jeremiah 33:8, Daniel 9:9-10, Joel 2:13, 1 Timothy 1:15, 1 John 1:9.
It also means trusting that the Fruit of the Spirit will begin to show in our lives in the place of sin.
Read James 1:22-The Holy Spirit produces fruit in my life through the constant study of the Word of God and obedience to it.
God God’s given us help to live obediently and show the fruit of the Spirit in our life? The Spirit and the Word.
When a truly repentant man reads the Bible, what does he do? Read James 1:22:
Reading James 1:22 again. The person who only hears the Word of God (or only reads the Word) and thinks that this is enough is
Read James 1:25. On the other hand, the person who studies the Word of God and then puts it into practice:
When we look into the Bible in this way we are using the Bible as our spiritual to help us see our selves as we are.
Read Ephesians 4:22-24, Colossians 3:9-11, 1 Thessalonians 1:9, 1 Peter 3:9. Put off sin and Put on a new way of living.
As a example Read Ephesians 4:28. According to this verse: What should the believer put off? What should he put on?
Read Philippians 4:6. According to this verse: What is to be put off? What is to put on in its place?
Read Romans 12:12
In this verse the Holy Spirit tells us that Christians ought to be: “in hope in affliction,in prayer.”
Now read Galatians 6:2
According to Galatians 6:2, what is a Christian supposed to do?(Help each other when we are in trouble).
Read Ephesians 4:29.
What is the believer to put on according to this verse?
But first, what needs to be confessed (put off)?
Read 1 Peter 3:8
What does this verse tells us to do?
How would you confess your failure to do these things?
Read Hebrews 12:15
What does this verse say that we are to do?
How would you confess your sin if this has been true of your life?
We ought to take this matter of confession very seriously. It is the Lord’s way of taking care of sin and of healing our relationship with Him AND other people. Make a habit of confessing sin as soon as you are aware of it in your life. You will find it results in greater spiritual growth and a Closeness to God.
An altogether different person was the man who was my seatmate on a flight to St. Louis….
“I happen to be facing a crisis at this time,” went on my seatmate. “Just what it is, is irrelevant, but to get ready for it my mind must be working at maximum, so I follow a procedure. First, I sharpen my mind by reading [the Bible]….
“Then I affirm God’s presence. I remind myself that the Lord is with me, for He said: ‘I am with you always.’ I spend a moment sensing and feeling the Lord’s actual presence … Next, I pray that my decisions will be right.
“Having completed those procedures, I then practice one of the wisest bits of advice in the Bible. Know what that is?”
“You tell me, I urged.
“’Having done all, to stand.’ When you’ve done all you can do, what more can you do? Just put everything confidently into God’s hands. He will bring it out OK.”
(From The Positive Power of Jesus Christ by Norman Vincent Peale)
We can survive setbacks if we stay focused and fulfill God’s purposes. What crises threaten to discourage you? The next time you face a crisis, imitate the person who discovered how to stay focused on God: read, meditate, pray, act, and wait.
1. Use the episode in John 3 about Nicodemus to explain what the new birth is and in what way it can be compared to one’s physical birth to someone you are witnessing to about the Lord.
2. Be able to use the marginal notes in your Bible to help you in your understanding of what the word of God says.
3. Take part in a discussion based upon the episode of the Samaritan Woman about the ways in which you can breakdown the barriers of racial prejudice and tradition to reach others for Christ.
Pause for a minute to ask God for his help as you study today’s lesson.
Read the episode we are going to be studying today in John 2:23-3:15.
Let’s begin our study with the first step of a good Bible study. That is spotting the main points in a Bible passage; otherwise known as .
In order to get an overall picture of what happened in this episode, we can ask questions about the story. One of the ways to spot the main points in a passage is to ask these questions:
Who? When? Where? What?
For instance, we can ask the following questions about this episode.
Who came to Jesus in John 3:1?
When did he come: the Season? (John2:23) During the Feast.
When did he come: the time of day? (John 3:2) At
Where did all this take place? In the city of
What three things do we know about the man who came to Jesus?
(a) (John 3:1) He was a
(b) (John 3:1) He was a
(c) (John 3:10) He was a
6. What was the main subject of their conversation? It is mentioned in verses 3 and 5. The of .
7. What did Jesus say was needed to enter the kingdom of God? See verses 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, but especially verses 3 and 7. A person must be .
8. What question did Nicodemus ask about being born again (verse 9)? How
9. What did Jesus say which tells us that the expected Nicodemus to understand the meaning of being born again (verse 10)? You are
Now that we have seen the main points of the passage we can see some things which need to be explained or making the meaning of points in the passage clear.
When we begin the second step in our study of this passage, we should once again start by asking questions about it. Questions like “What does this mean?” and “Why did this happen?” will help us to use the technique of explanation.
For example, Let’s ask this question: (check below) “What does being ‘born again’ mean?”
Steadily learning to live a better life.
A completely fresh start
Keeping the words of the Bible
Why didn’t Nicodemus the Pharisee, understand what Jesus meant by being born again at the very start? Nicodemus was a Pharisee. The Pharisees believed that you needed to keep the law of Moses very strictly; along with the added human traditions to the World of God.
How would Nicodemus have thought that someone can enter the Kingdom of God?
Jesus used the technique of explaining to make His meaning clear to Nicodemus. The first thing Jesus is to get Nicodemus to see the difference between physical birth (the flesh) and spiritual birth (being born again).
Now notice that Jesus used symbols when he explained the new birth to Nicodemus. What symbol did he use in verse5? Read John 3:23. What was water used for in this verse?
Now Read Acts 2:38.
What is the step which comes before baptism?
So we can see here then that when Jesus said we should be born of water, he was explaining that is and essential step to being born again. This is so because Water is the symbol of being cleansed from.
Think for a minute about what you have just done. When you read Acts 2:38 you were using the Bible study technique of to help you with the technique of .
Jesus also used another symbol to explain the new birth. It can be found in John 3:8.
What is the symbol?
What does it represent?
Answer “Yes” or “No” to each of the following questions:
Can man control: a. the wind?b. the Spirit?
Can man see (and hear) the effects of: a. the wind? b. the Spirit?
In other words, the results of being born of the Spirit can be seen in the life of a man.
Read Galatians 5:22. List the results you would expect to see in a person who has been born again through the Holy Spirit?
Using your own words, explain how the new birth and physical birth are different. If you need help read John 3:6.
How are they alike?
Do you remember in what language the new Testament was first written?
In a prior lesson we learned how to use the Cross references and Footnotes in our Bibles to find other passages which talk about the same thing as the one we were studying.
Perhaps you have already noticed that not all of the footnotes only other Bible verses. The other references are called Marginal Notes. They are written in italics.
Let’s look at John 3:3 as an example.
The footnotes for this verse by comparing the dark letters beside the words with those in the footnotes.
Cross-references are shown in the verse with the light letters written beside the words.
The Marginal Notes, since they are footnotes, are shown in the verse with the letters written besides the words.
What Dark letter can be found beside the word again in John 3:3? Letter
Most of the Marginal Notes found in your Bible give other ways in which the Greek words could be translated into English with the words: (Use the marginal notes to find the answer-born from above).
By making use of the marginal notes in your Bible you know that the Greek word translated “again” has two meanings, both of which are important. 1. A completely fresh start and 2. From above. This means that we must receive the new birth from God, the Holy Spirit.
In the new birth, everything comes from God. It doesn’t depend upon our own efforts and good deeds. Jesus’ way to enter into the kingdom of God (by being born again) is the exact opposite of the way of Nicodemus (by keeping the Law of Moses).
Now turn to Ezekiel 36:25-27 and answer these questions: What are the two things promised here? A new and a new . Who promised these things?
Now read Ezekiel 11:19 and 18:31. What are the two new thinks which are promised in these verses? A new and a new .
So then, Nicodemus ought to have known that it was necessary for man to receive a new spirit. God had promised a new heart and a new spirit so that men and women could have new lives and be new persons.
Read Matthew 3:1-2, Mark 1:14-15, Acts 2:38, Acts 17:22 and 30. What do all of these verses say that a man ought to do? . What does this mean? A oftoward.
What should follow repentance? (Read John 7:50-52)
Now read John 19:39-40). What did Nicodemus do at a latter time which tells us that he was born again?
Now, ask yourself this very important question:
Have you been Born Again?
If you can’t answer this question with a “Yes”.
Take sometime Right Now to Pray. Repent of Your Sin and Receive Jesus Christ as your Savior and LORD. God will do as He had promised and you will be Born Again of His Holy Spirit.
Read 2 Corinthians 5:17, 1 Peter 1:3, 22-23, Titus 3:5 in summary.
Love is the only law you need….
(To love God with your whole heart, mind, soul, and spirit, and) To love your neighbor as yourself. Keep this command, this law, and you automatically keep all the others. If you are really concerned with keeping the law of love, it is the only law you really need. Then civil laws are not problems or objects of protests and demonstrations. Civil laws are only guidelines to help you achieve your aim: loving others as you love yourself and thereby fulfilling all of God’s requirements….
The Christian who lives by the law of love does not see authority as a threat. Nor does he see imperfections or even gross errors in government as reason to riot or demonstrate unlawfully. The Christian is not a bystander in his society. Actually, he should be in the thick of the battle for justice, morality and the right. But the Christian operates with a different motive. He seeks justice for all, yes, but justice is primarily a negative concept, based on avoiding or preventing the doing of wrongs to others. The law of love goes beyond justice. The law of love seeks the positive doing of good to others. It is the only law a Christian needs.
(From How to Be a Christian Without Being Religious by Fritz Ridenour)
Look around you – who do you see at work? At home? On the road? In church? Give them your time, your attention, your love, and your respect.
You will have a change to take a personal inventory. “Who am I?” is not simply a question asked by adolescents searching for there identity. It is a question we all ask ourselves throughout our lives.
Our response to that question includes how we view ourselves and how other’s view us. We are influenced by the ways in which our parents, our friends, and our colleagues or peers see us. Their comments and opinions are informative. But their accuracy depends on how much we reveal ourselves to them. Few of us walk around with all of our walls down. Few of us allows others to see both our public selves and our private selves. Many of us act one way in public (out in the open), and differently by ourselves (or within the walls of our homes).
Self discovery can be a fulfilling experience. But it can be scary. What happens if we look inward and we don’t like what we find? The important missing factor is lookinng inward with God. over the lessons ahead we will take a journey inward-discovering who we are in the light of Scripture. We will look at our self-image, our values, our personality, and our hang-ups. We will discover what we believe, what we fear, and what we hope for in our lives.
As we take an in-depth look at ourselves, let us remember that God has created us in his image. In the following gospel story, Jesus uses a parable to show how a position of privilege can lead to a distorted perspective of spiritual reality. If Jesus were teaching the parable today, he might say, “Your outward actions reflect your heart’s desire.
Usually the content of the passage is the focus of the Bible study. In this study the focus will be on telling your “story,” using the passage as a springboard.
Read Luke 18:9-14
Which person would you feel closer to if this incident occurred in front of your church, and the two people were your age?
Why would you feel close to the person you chose?
How many of your problems would you share with these people?
Why do you think the Pharisee acted the way he did?
Why do you think the tax collector acted the way he did?
What is Jesus teaching you through this parable?
John Egglen had never preached a sermon in his life. Never.
Wasn’t that he didn’t want to, just never needed to. But then one morning he did. The snow left his town of Colchester. England, buried in white. When he awoke on that January Sunday in 1850, he thought of staying home. Who would go to church in such weather?
But he reconsidered. He was, after all, a deacon. And if the deacons didn’t go, who would? So he put on his boots, hat, and coat and walked the six miles to the Methodist Church.
He wasn’t the only member who considered staying home. In fact, he was one of the few who came. Only thirteen people were present. Twelve members and one visitor. Even the minister was snowed in. Someone suggested they go home. Egglen would hear none of that. They’d come this far; they would have a service. Besides , they had a visitor. A thirteen-year-old boy.
But who would preach? Egglen was the only deacon. It fell to him.
And so he did. His sermon lasted ten minutes. It drifted and wandered. and made no point in an effort to make several. But at the end, an uncharacteristic courage settled upon the man. He lifted his eyes and looked straight at the boy and challenged: “Young man, look to Jesus. Look! Look! Look!
Did the challenge make a difference? Let the boy, now a man, answer. “I did look, and then and there the cloud on my heart lifted, the darkness rolled away, and at that moment I saw the sun.”
The boy’s name? Charles Haddon Spurgeon. England’s prince of preachers.
(From When God Whispers Your Name by Max Lucado
God uses unlikely people in unusual situations to preserve his people. Look at your surroundings. How could God use you? Perhaps he has placed you there to reach someone for Jesus. Be bold (but not brash). Share your faith. Encourage others to look to Jesus.
BIO:Thomas Todhunter Shields
Canadian pastor. T.T. Shields was born in Bristol, England,
the son of a Baptist minister. At an early age, he was con-
verted to Christ during a revival meeting in his father’s
church. He was educated in British universities. After a few
pastorates in England, he was called to the Jarvis Street
Baptist Church in Toronto, Canada, in 1910, where he served
for 45 years.
However, his service for Christ was not confined to
the Jarvis Street Church, in that he was active in the fol-
lowing capacities: vice-chairman of the Home Mission Board of
the Baptist Convention of Ontario and Quebec, president of
the Baptist Union of North America, vice-president of the In-
ternational Council of Christian Churches, president of the
Union of Regular Baptist Churches of Ontario and Quebec,
president of the Conservative Baptist Churches of Canada,
president of the Canadian Council of Evangelical Christian
Churches, and president of the Canadian Protestant League.
In 1927 Dr. Shields organized the Toronto Baptist
Seminary. He also was the author of a number of Christian
books. He was the leading exponent of fundamental Christian-
ity in Canada, which caused him to be referred to as “the
Spurgeon of Canada.”