Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Exodus Bible Sketch

God is in the details of the ten commandments [God is love]

“Where the heart is right with God, all the other commandments follow.” —Dr. A. L. Barry
God is love—pure, patient, self-giving, desiring all to be saved.

The cross of Jesus in Bible verse sketch “You shall have no other gods before me.” Exodus 20:3 ESV
The cross of Jesus in Bible verse sketch “You shall have no other gods before me.” Exodus 20:3 ESV

What are small-g-gods all about?

Grappling: The First Commandment and Six Idols (The Ten Commandments)  (open link, then click on picture to start short video about idolatry)

Sins make life difficult, meaningless, or dull; they take priority over praying, thanking, praising, revering, listening to His Word, singing hymns and worshiping God. Our Lord Jesus brings forgiveness, healing, peace and joy to those who confess and repent of sins (realized) as well as the sins which may be evident to others (and God) though we may not recognize. A few examples are
  • spending time or money unwisely or miserly
  • neglecting to attend to needs of others
  • avoiding opportunities to share the Gospel
  • poor response to others when they commit sins against us
  • blame-shifting, denial or refusal to take responsibility for sins
  • manipulating people and situations
  • impatience
  • the list goes on…
Dimensions of how deeply our sinful nature (unhealthy connection to other gods) affects others is beyond what we can accurately measure or explain. We get boxed into rigid perimeters other sinners place around us or we build walls around ourselves and others. We cannot free ourselves from sin preventing us to think outside our own little boxes.

The Holy Spirit gives believers power to resist temptations, lies, vices of Satan, the world, and our fallen nature which promote an inclination to abuse or give excess praise, focus, reliance on
  • things we consume and places we go—confused about what [we think] we “deserve”—we sometimes forget to thank our Creator who provides skills and opportunities which allow us to generate income to afford these items and pleasures
  • ourselvesselfish, prideful, stubborn, wants, worries, negativity, mistrust in the Lord 
  • workfalsely thinking it “earns” God’s favor
  • control—which is not ours to impose on others
  • people in our lives:
    —having an unrealistic expectation of perfection
    —assuming to be understood by a person without communicating with him/her
    —unforgiving lack of compassion toward one who seeks to be heard/forgiven
    —demanding of or using someone for our own glory and gratification
Our Heavenly Father provides the Word to help us offer forgiveness and compassion toward those He placed for us to humbly love, lead, support, nourish, cherish and protect.
    Being able to forgive others (pastor, teacher, parent, spouse, sibling, child, grandchild, friend, co-worker, etc.) isn’t like a light switch that is turned on and off—it is a process that takes time. We may never forget the sins, yet with the help of God we can and it is good for us to
    1. confess our own sinfulness
    2. have empathy toward ourselves and those who sin against us (if they are willing to communicate, listen to their fears, desires, misplaced trust)
    3. because of what Christ has done, we can forgive self and people who sin against us even if they do not ask to be forgiven

    Don’t lose heart!

    God opened the Way to freedom and saves many who abide in Truth. His Word teaches us to ask for His will to be done and enables us to receive His forgiveness and goodness. Generously and mercifully he
    • feeds our hunger
    • directs our focus
    • protects and delivers us from evil
    • heals the brokenhearted
    • shows kindness
    • comforts us in sorrows
    • levels—makes a smooth path by still waters for our thirsty souls
    • leads us to Himself and a life of repentance
    • walks with us
    • forgives, washes, cleans up after us, turns us around
    • allows us to receive and fully trust His mercy
    • provides us capacity to share mercy with others
    • creates peace and goodness

    Pray: dear God of Love, we praise and thank You for this Good News! Guide us that we may generously forgive, show mercy, share and receive compassionate love. Amen.
    “…as far as the east is from the west…” Psalm 103
    Gracious God sketch of the cradled Christ, crown of thorns, cross of Christ, Easter lilies, risen sun (Son of God) with rays of hope, water of baptism, trees of the field—doodled during a bible study class.
    Gracious God sketch of the cradled Christ, crown of thorns, cross of Christ, Easter lilies, risen sun (Son of God) with rays of hope, water of baptism, trees of the field—doodled during a bible study class.

    Our Creator is so gracious!


    While we were yet sinners, He pours the Holy Spirit into our hearts—we receive this gift in the water of baptism and by hearing His Word.


    Our Heavenly Father frees and saves repentant sinners through the sacrifice of Christ Jesus, our Precious Treasure who
    For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. Ephesians 2:8-9, ESV (whole chapter)

    Are you looking for a Bible with helpful extras? 

    Check out The Lutheran Study Bible.

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