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LESSON 10: THE PRINCIPLE OF CONTENTMENT
Click to watch Robert Morris' message:
"Have you seen the 10 Commandments in a little different light?" asks Pastor Robert.
He states they are 10 laws for a civilized society and he never wants to overlook that, but he says there is a principle behind each commandment that he thinks we need to understand.
He said that 2/3 of the way through this study he realized that he has missed the mark in some areas of each principle. He says it is easy to think that we haven't broken all of the commandments. We may think, we haven't murdered anyone, haven't committed adultery, have honored our parents, don't have any idols in our houses, etc. It's like we go through the list like the rich young ruler did when he was talking to Jesus. We think we have kept the 10 Commandments, but when we think about the principles behind the Commandments, we might have the same revelation as Pastor Robert, thinking, "Yes, Lord, I have broken all these Commandments at some time in my life."
When he was thinking about this, he felt like the Lord reminded him that He didn't give the 10 Commandments so we could make Him happy. The Lord is happy with us. He loves us even we miss the mark. We are all humans. These principles are to enhance our relationship with Him and with each other.
17 “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.”
We like to shorten this Commandment to "Thou shall not covet."
Pastor Robert says that is ok if we understand what covet means.
The principle that Pastor Robert believes the Lord is trying to instill in us within this commandment is the Principle of Contentment.
He continues by stating that the only reason that we would covet what someone else has is because we are not content with what we have.
There is scripture in the New Testament that the Lord gave Pastor Robert before he ever started studying about the covetousness. First, he will show us the second part of the scripture because that is what we are most familiar with.
This scripture shows that contentment is the opposite of covetousness, or the answer or remedy to it.
Here is the second part of the scripture:
For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
This quote is actually from the Old Testament in Joshua 1:5 where the Lord tells Joshua that He will be with him like he was with Moses before Moses died.
Here is the first part of the scripture:
5 Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
conduct without covetousness - In other words, the way to be content is to know that the Lord will never leave us or forsake us.
He will always be our Father and always be our provider!
1. What is coveting?
Pastor Robert advises that it is good to read the 10 Commandments in both books so that we can get a better understanding. It will help us understand covetousness a little better.
21 ‘You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife; and you shall not desire your neighbor’s house, his field, his male servant, his female servant, his ox, his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor’s.’
Pastor Robert points out that covet means desire, but it is stronger than desire.
It means to strongly desire.
Pastor Robert continues by stating that God is not saying to us that we shouldn't desire. Instead, the Lord is saying we shall not desire what belongs to someone else.
That is coveting.
Desiring a better house for your family, or a better school system, or a reliable car is ok.
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Pastor Robert believes that it is amazing how many things go back to the first sin in Genesis.
Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit.
Pastor Robert asks if we realize what Satan did to get them to eat the fruit?
He got them to covet.
He got them to desire something that did not belong to them.
God said they could have all the trees except that one.
In essence, that tree belonged to Him.
So Satan started asking questions:
3 Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?”
3 reasons Eve ate the forbidden fruit:
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1. It was good for food.
2. It was pleasant to the eyes.
3. It was desirable to make one wise.
He says that Satan doesn't have any new tricks.
He will try everything he can to make us think that what our neighbor has is better than what we have.
Covetousness is more serious than we think.
It causes us to resent God because we think God is providing something for someone else but not for us.
Jesus said to beware of covetousness:
15 And He said to them, “Take heed and beware of [a]covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses.”
Pastor Robert says that if we have been blessed financially, as most Americans have compared to the rest of the world, that this is a good scripture to memorize.
Pastor Robert shows us that there are some scriptures where covetousness is listed among some other very serious sins.
11 But now I have written to you not to keep with anyone named a brother, who is sexually immoral, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or an extortioner—not even to eat with such a person.
1 Corinthians 5:11
3 But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints;
Colossians 3:5 explains why covetousness is so bad.
5 Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.
Covetousness is idolatry!
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Pastor Robert asks us to read Exodus 20:17 again because God is unbelievably clear on covetousness.
17 “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.”
Again, the Lord is saying it is not wrong to desire things, just don't strongly desire what belongs to someone else or it will become an idol.
Exodus 20 covers people and property.
Pastor Robert says that a wife was not considered property in Israel.
Israel had forbidden selling wives, but husbands could be sold. He said there was no market for husbands though. lol!
2. Contentment vs. Contention
When we look at both words, we notice that they have the same root word. The suffixes are what change their meanings.
ment - means the state of
Contentment is the state of being happy or satisfied.
Contention is a struggle or quarrel.
Another example would be Phil Mickelson being in contention for the Master's Title.
Competition is the sister word to comparison.
It happens when we are not content.
We compare things such as:
our house to someone else's house,
our job to someone else's job,
our spouse to someone else's spouse.
Comparison is not good thing to do!
There are exceptions, of course, as when we go house hunting and compare the different houses before choosing one to buy.
It is not coveting, as long as we are content with what God has provided for us.
When we starting comparing, we cross the line to coveting.
When we begin to compare, we look for what someone else has. This means we are dissatisfied with what we have.
When we compare and are dissatisfied, there are only 1 of 2 conclusions, either inferiority or superiority.
In other words, Pastor Robert says, if my home is nicer than yours and I have discontentment in my heart, I could feel superior.
If, on the other hand, if my house is not as nice as yours and I have discontentment in my heart, then I could feel inferior.
Pastor Robert says that you can't imagine how comparison messes you up!
Pastor Robert gives us some wild examples:
-Coveting won't allow you to rejoice when someone else gets blessed because you will think, well, I've been with the company longer than he has. How did he get that promotion? What that really says is that you are not content with God and what He is providing for you.
-Not only do we not rejoice when someone else gets blessed, but if someone we don't like get blessed, we get mad. Also, if something bad happens to someone we don't like, we rejoice a little bit.
It is comparing and it is never right!
12 For we dare not class ourselves or compare ourselves with those who commend themselves. But they, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.
2 Corinthians 10:12
Pastor Robert has underlined the following words in the above scripture:
class - Pastor Robert remarks that isn't amazing how we class ourselves?
But not in the body of Christ, as we all are joint heirs!
commend -It always happens that we start commending ourselves. We have to build ourselves up to everyone else.
are not wise - Remember last when we talked about three types of people discussed in the Bible, wise, foolish and evil? Pastor Robert says that he has realized the reason some people are foolish is because they are always comparing themselves.
Pastor Robert gives this example about a former Associate Pastor at Gateway. Pastor Todd worked closely with Pastor Robert and knows how demanding his schedule is. The Assoicate Pastor told Pastor Todd that he needed the same amount of study time that Pastor Robert had. Pastor Todd couldn't believe those words came out of his mouth. The Associate Pastor was comparing his schedule to Pastor Robert's not having a clue the demands that are on Pastor Robert. It was just a foolish statement because he was comparing himself.
Social media is posed and not real.
You might see a picture of someone whose husband took her to dinner for her birthday and you go into the living room and see your husband staring at the TV! Who knows? They could have gotten into a knockdown, drag out fight right after that nice birthday dinner, but that picture will never be posted!
We compare ourselves and we covet!
Pastor Robert tells about a friend of his who was in his thirties and had never been married. He asked Pastor Robert if he could combine two scriptures. Pastor Robert said yes, but it depended on how he interpreted those scriptures. Pastor Robert asked to see the scriptures. They were Psalms 84:11 and Proverbs 18:22.
For the Lord God is a sun and shield;
The Lord will give grace and glory;
No good thing will He withhold
From those who walk uprightly.
He who finds a wife finds a good thing,
And obtains favor from the Lord.
He asked Pastor Robert that if he walked uprightly, would God provide him with a wife? Pastor Robert told him yes, that he could combine those two scriptures.
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Pastor Robert concludes that what is good about this story is that his friend never coveted someone else's wife. He always saw his wife as a "Good Thing" because he knew that he got her from God.
3. Delight before Desire
Pastor Robert says since we are talking about coveting being a strong desire, how do we get our desires right?
The answer he says is that we delight in the Lord.
Pastor Robert gives this example:
He said that there are 8 years difference between his eldest son Josh and his daughter Elaine. James is their second son born after Josh.
He said that he prayed and prayed for a little girl. With both of his sons, Josh and James, he had gotten a word from God. He knew that he was going to have sons. Someone asked him why he and his wife didn't get a sonogram. He said it was because they didn't have sonograms back then. That they rode a dinosaur to the hospital. lol!
Pastor Robert said that he asked the Lord over and over again if their baby was going to be a girl. He heard nothing from the Lord for months. One day, he asked the Lord why He wouldn't give him a word on this pregnancy. Was it going to be a girl? Finally, the Lord said to Pastor Robert very clearly in his spirit, to delight himself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. Pastor Robert said, "Yeah, but is it a girl?" The Lord told him to figure out what that scripture meant. Pastor Robert said it was like the Lord sat in the room with him while he was studying.
Delight yourself also in the Lord,
And He shall give you the desires of your heart.
Pastor Robert explains that David wrote this Psalm later in his life and probably wrote it for instruction to his son Solomon. What he was saying to Solomon was it was going to look like the wicked flourish and the righteous don't. The word wicked occurs more in this chapter than any other.
David keeps telling his son that he is going to have
to learn to trust God.
Trust in the Lord, and do good;
Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.
verse 3 - put your trust in God
verse 4 - delight in the Lord
David tells Solomon that if he will come to a place where he can learn to be content with what God has provided for him, then he won't be comparing himself with other people.
Pastor Robert states that that is the whole context!
He says most people think that if you serve the Lord, He will give you what you want. That is not what this scripture means.
It says that if you trust, serve, and delight yourself in the Lord, that He will actually put the right desires in your heart.
In other words, the Lord will actually put the desires in your heart if you are content with whatever He has for you.
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Pastor Robert sums up this message by encouraging us to be content with what God has for us. He says that if do that, we will never have to worry about coveting!
At the end of every message, Pastor Robert encourages us to ask the Holy Spirit what He is saying to us.
Pastor Robert asks us if there an area of our life that we are not content? He says that does not mean that we don't strive to be better and desire to be successful in the career that God has given us. That is not what we are talking about. We are talking about something that is a struggle within ourselves.
It causes competition with other people.
It is a struggle.
We just can't be satisfied or happy.
Think about that, he says.
He asks if there any area in our life where we can say to the Lord that we are going to trust Him, and be content with His provision for us, and stop looking at what other people have.
LESSON 9: THE PRINCIPLE OF HONESTY
Click to watch Robert Morris' message:
16 “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
Pastor Robert reminds us that God was establishing a civilized society.
The 10 Commandments are a foundation for a civilized society.
A civilized society is governed by moral laws.
Pastor Robert states that is why it is important what laws our government posses - whether they are moral or not.
It is a legal commandment.
When you go to court.
bear - means to answer, testify
false - means wrong
witness - means a testimony
When you are asked to testify, don't give an answer with a lying testimony.
God was trying to set up a society where they loved Him and loved each other.
The 10 Commandments are all about that.
Pastor Robert stresses that this is an extremely important commandment.
Back in that day, disputes were settled by elders.
They were elders of the cities, tribes, or clans.
They were males over 50.
They came together at the gate of the city to hear the case.
When Jezebel wanted Naboth killed, she hired two false witnesses. Naboth was murdered because of what they said!
7 Then Jezebel his wife said to him, “You now exercise authority over Israel! Arise, eat food, and let your heart be cheerful; I will give you the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite.” 8 And she wrote letters in Ahab’s name, sealed them with his seal, and sent the letters to the elders and the nobles who were dwelling in the city with Naboth. 9 She wrote in the letters, saying, Proclaim a fast, and seat Naboth [a]with high honor among the people; 10 and seat two men, scoundrels, before him to bear witness against him, saying, “You have blasphemed God and the king.” Then take him out, and stone him, that he may die. 11 So the men of his city, the elders and nobles who were inhabitants of his city, did as Jezebel had sent to them, as it was written in the letters which she had sent to them. 12 They proclaimed a fast, and seated Naboth with high honor among the people. 13 And two men, scoundrels, came in and sat before him; and the scoundrels witnessed against him, against Naboth, in the presence of the people, saying, “Naboth has blasphemed God and the king!” Then they took him outside the city and stoned him with stones, so that he died. 14 Then they sent to Jezebel, saying, “Naboth has been stoned and is dead.”
1 Kings 21:7-14
According to Pastor Robert, because Israel was a capital punishment society, if you lied in a case and it was revealed that you gave false witness, you then committed murder because the person that you lied about died because of your witness. As a result, you then were killed also.
Pastor Robert says that other ancient cultures had stiff laws as well.
In ancient Greece, if a witness lied on the stand, they were given a heavy fine to pay. If they did it 3 times, they lost their civil rights.
In ancient Egypt, if a witness lied under oath, his ears and nose were amputated. Pastor Robert jokes that it was easy to identify who told lies.
In ancient Rome, false witness were hurled off an 80 foot high rock. It was called a Tarpeian Rock.
Most of the time, witnesses take an oath by putting their hand on the Bible and swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
Pastor Robert emphasizes that this was a moral code that God was trying to impliment through the 10 Commandments.
Pastor Robert states that he is not so concerned that we all are going to lie under oath and send someone to the electric chair.
What he is concerned about is that all of us violate the principle that is behind this commandment. It's the principle of honesty.
Pastor Robert says that he thinks that we have to come to a place where we call sin, sin. That is what he thinks this 9th commandment is all about.
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Pastor Robert gives us three simple ways to develop honesty in our lives.
1. Be honest with yourself.
Pastor Robert discloses that this might be one of the most difficult messages to preach because dishonest people are dishonest.
They have convinced themselves that they are not dishonest.
He continues by stating that the hardest people to help are dishonest people, because they won't be honest with themselves. It is never their fault.
They always have a excuse or reason.
There is no way to help them.
If they won't be honest with themselves, then God won't help them either.
Here's the problem according to Pastor Robert:
Some people are so hurt and wounded from past experiences that they almost have to be dishonest about themselves because they can't face the truth.
They haven't experience healing that God has for them yet.
Pastor Robert tells about a time that he had to go back in and rerecord a weekend message because something went wrong. The staff member in charge apologized and asked Pastor Robert to forgive him, saying that it was his fault. Pastor Robert replied by asking him a question. He asked, "What kind of people make mistakes like this?" Then he answered his own questions by saying, "Humans do." He continued by stating that as humans, when we make mistakes. We have to be honest with ourselves, and admit our mistakes.
Pastor Robert says that people will be gracious if you say that you were wrong, if you correct yourself, and if you be accountable with them.
Pastor Robert said that he used to have a tendency to exaggerate a bit. He asked his wife to help recognize it and stop. He also mentored a young pastor who had struggled with exaggeration as well. He helped the young pastor realize that he was training people that he exaggerated. He thanked Pastor Robert for helping him realize this and went on to become a great preacher.
Pastor Robert encourages us to be honest in everything we do and everything we say.
2. Be honest with others.
Pastor Robert says to look how far God takes being honest with one another.
Here's what's in the Bible:
16 [a]Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, [b]fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.
The reason we confess our sins to one another, according to Pastor Robert,
is for humility and accountability.
He says to be honest with others so that they will be honest with us. He encourages us get in a small group and talk with others about what we are going through. Confess your sins and talk together to bring the sins out of the darkness into the light.
Pastor Robert says again that he can not help people who are dishonest. He says that some people are so wounded that they can not look at them honestly.
Pastor Robert says that you can correct a wise man and he will be wiser still. If you take the truth to wise people then they will adapt themselves to truth. They will change themselves to line up with the truth and they will thank you.
Foolish people will make excuses. They will turn it around on you and adapt the truth to themselves and not receive the truth.
Do not correct a scoffer, lest he hate you;
Rebuke a wise man, and he will love you.
The bottom line is that a foolish person has something in his/her life that he/she can not be honest about, and so he/she can not be honest about his/her self.
10 Reject a divisive man after the first and second [a]admonition,
admonition - means warning
According to Pastor Robert freedom comes in your life when you are honest with others because you don't have to be two people any more. You can't imagine how many people are two people, one public and one private. You don't have to be dishonest anymore. Just be who you are. Let God help you. Let someone else help you.
As an example of this, Pastor Robert tells about a pastor friend of his who had an immoral failure. He met with his friend to help him after this. Pastor Robert felt like the Lord gave him a revelation about this and so he said to his friend that he felt like the Lord showed him that his friend was actually 3 people. The first person loved God and his family and Pastor Robert had known this person for many years.
The second person was a man who fell and got caught in immorality and wanted to get free. But the third person was a liar and a deceiver. He's been lying to his wife, and to Pastor Robert. He told him that if he continued to lie to his wife or to him, during that process, that he couldn't be restored. The great news is that his friend was honest with his wife, honest with Pastor Robert, and honest with his accountability group and now he is restored and pastoring again!
3. Be honest with God.
Pastor Robert asks us if we can imagine how God feels when we are dishonest with Him.
He challenges us to think about it...
Say we blew it last week, and we have talked to God 3 or 4 times since then but have not mentioned it. (Like He doesn't know!) We would be like a child holding something behind our back. The amazing thing is that God already paid for what we did wrong. He knew we would do it, but has already paid for it in full! But, we have not talked to Him about it. The problem is that we learn to be dishonest with Him. We also learn to be prideful thinking that we can deal with this without talking to God about it. That is the exact opposite of what we should do. We should bring it God and get free of it!
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Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven,
Whose sin is covered.
2 Blessed is the man to whom the Lord does not [b]impute iniquity,
And in whose spirit there is no deceit. 3 When I kept silent, my bones grew old
Through my groaning all the day long.
4 For day and night Your hand was heavy upon me;
My vitality was turned into the drought of summer. Selah
5 I acknowledged my sin to You,
And my iniquity I have not hidden.
I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,”
And You forgave the iniquity of my sin. Selah
vs. 1 - sin is already forgiven, taken care of
vs. 3 - David is saying that until he confessed his sin, he felt horrible, he had no strength, no vitality, and no joy until he confessed it.
David asks what took him so long to confess? The answer is in vs. 2.
vs. 2 -"in whose spirit there is no deceit."
Pastor Robert has been trying to tell us that violating the Commandments affects our body, soul, and spirit.
In order to hate someone, have an idol in your heart, or get involved in some sort of sexual sin, you have to be deceitful.
When we are dishonest, we are deceived in our spirits.
We must bring it out in the open, be honest, and be fully transparent.
We must be vulnerable to God and to others.
Robert tells about the first time he lied and got caught. There was some money on the counter. He took the money and his parents knew he did. He dad asked him if he took the money and he told him no that he hadn't. He dad said they would have to look for it until they found it. It was in Robert's pocket. Finally, he took it out of his pocket and put it behind the chair in the living room. He told his dad that he had found it.
His dad confronted him again. He admitted to taking the money. His dad gave him two spankings. One was for stealing and the other was for lying. Looking back at it, he said he dad had done the right thing, but after the second spanking, Robert decided that he needed to get better at lying. Satan put that thought into his mind. He said that after that he did get better at lying. He challenges us by stating that he bets some of us got better at lying as well. We learned how to lie and how to turn the story so that it favored us.
He continues by saying that the best for him was to really get honest.
He felt like the Lord told him that he needed to get very honest with two people in his life, his wife and Pastor Oland. He wrote down everything bad that he had ever done that no one knew on paper and on two separate occasions, he confessed these things to each one of them. It was 7 years into his marriage and he was going through a restoration process. He told Debbie that he really needed to tell her who she had really married. The conversation took several hours. Afterward she told him that she knew when she had married him that he was bad, but she didn't know that he was that bad! She said what she saw in him was a person who really wanted to deal with his sin. She said that she loved him then, but that she loved him even more today because he was honest with her!
Pastor Robert states that when he works with couples who have had infidelity in their marriage, that the infidelity is not the hardest issue. The most difficult issue is the dishonesty.
He says that God is saying to be honest with ourselves, with others, and with Him.
Pastor Robert encourages us to ask the Holy Spirit what He is saying to us through this message. He says the Lord may answer us right away or during the course of the week. He states that maybe the breakthrough we need is just right around the corner to breaking this stronghold of dishonesty in our lives.
LESSON 8: THE PRINCIPLE OF TRUST
Click to watch Robert Morris' message:
Pastor Robert reminds us that we are looking for principles of relationship within each of the 10 Commandments. This week we will study the 8th Commandment
"Thou shall not steal."
According to Pastor Robert, God is trying to instill the
principle of trust in this commandment.
When you think about, he continues, the only reason why you would steal is because you don't trust God to provide for you.
All three of Pastor Robert's points will come from Ephesians 4. Several of the commandments that we are studying in this series are found in Ephesians 4.
Do Not Grieve the Spirit
25 Therefore, putting away lying, “Let each one of you speak truth with his neighbor,” for we are members of one another. 26 “Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, 27 nor give [a]place to the devil. 28 Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need.
vs. 25 - don't lie - Commandment #9
vs. 26 - not be angry, don't have unresolved anger that could actually lead to hate and then murder - Commandment #5
vs. 27 - don't give place to the devil - adultery in the body, mind, or spirit gives a place to the enemy - Commandment #7
vs. 28 - don't steal - Commandment #8
1. Stop Stealing
Pastor Robert urges that if you are to develop this principle of trust in your life, you must stop stealing in little ways. He says that he thinks sometimes we do steal and then excuse it because it's just a little thing.
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16 This is the thing which the Lord has commanded: ‘Let every man gather it according to each one’s need, one omer for each person, according to the number of persons; let every man take for those who are in his tent.’ ” 17 Then the children of Israel did so and gathered, some more, some less. 18 So when they measured it by omers, he who gathered much had nothing left over, and he who gathered little had no lack. Every man had gathered according to each one’s need.
omer - 2 litters
Pastor Robert reminds us that everyone had the perfect amount of manna.
He challenges us to think about that if God provided the exact amount for every person and one person took more that he was supposed to take, then he was stealing from another person. Taking more is stealing.
He says the problem today is not the people who are making more. The problem is the people who are taking more. Actually, the people who are making more are helping the economy. They are creating jobs, but the media doesn't want you to know that.
They won't tell you that.
The entrepreneurs and job creators in our country are doing good for America.
28 And the Lord said to Moses, “How long do you refuse to keep My commandments and My laws?
That was Israel's problem. They didn't trust that He would provide enough on the 6th day for two days.
Pastor Robert really believes that Christians steal today.
Here are some things to think about:
,-Have you ever bought anything on a business expense account that was personal?
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Pastor Robert is not saying not to take advantage of the tax laws. He is just saying to be honest.
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-Have you ever taken a longer lunch that you were allowed?
That would be stealing.
-To not pay one's debts is stealing. If you borrow the money, you need to pay it back.
-Not working the agreed number of hours for pay is stealing.
10 The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
Pastor Robert gives this example:
He and his wife bought some patio furniture. They got the furniture home and realized that they had room for another chair. They decided to call and order it. Robert went to pick up the chair and they didn't ask him to pay for it. It was pretty sure that he and his wife hadn't paid for it yet. He considered not asking about it, but had the conviction that he should. He did ask the sales clerk and turned out that his wife had paid for the chair with a credit card when she called to order it.
2. Start Working
28 Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need.
Pastor Robert tell us yes, to start working. A lot of people have jobs but don't work. He says he knows people who work and he knows people who hardly work.
God blesses hard work!
labor - means to grow weary, tired, and to be exhausted
Pastor Robert said his son, Josh, was exhausted after first day of work at his first job. Pastor Robert said that is why they call it work and when he went back tomorrow, they would expect him to work again. Josh told his dad that some guys didn't work. Pastor Robert told him that those guys would be the type of people that would bounce around from job to job the rest of their lives until they learned to work.
God blesses hard work. This 8th Commandment is a balance to the 4th Commandment. It's why we need rest.
God's plan is that you would work and receive joy from your work.
God told Adam and Eve to work before the fall.
15 Then the Lord God took [a]the man and put him in the garden of Eden to [b]tend and keep it.
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When Pastor Robert was in high school he worked for dad in his land survey company. One of his friends told hem that he should come work with him at a different surveying company because they didn't have to work. Pastor Robert thought that sounded good, so he quit working for his dad and got a job with the other company. As it turned out, they did not work much. They spend a lot of time eating doughnuts, and taking breaks. After a month, Pastor Robert quit that job and went back to work for his dad because that job was no fun. He was lost as a teenager and didn't get saved until after he got married, but he had grown up working. He knew how to work and he enjoyed it.
3. Get to Giving
28 Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need.
he may - Pastor Robert underlined these two words because we get to give.
We don't have to give. God is not going to make us give.
He continues by saying that the whole purpose of the living the "blessed life," is that we get to give.
He said that he is always amazed by preachers who preach that if you give, you will get.
He says that is not the point!
If we don't steal and are hard workers then we get to give to those who truly have a need.
We can make a difference!
The biggest theft that is going on in the church, in Pastor Robert's opinion, is taking what belongs to God and not trusting that if we do what He says in the area of giving, that He will bless us and take care of us.
11 Israel has sinned, and they have also transgressed My covenant which I commanded them. For they have even taken some of the [a]accursed things, and have both stolen and deceived; and they have also put it among their own stuff.
The Children of Israel were supposed to bring all the silver and gold into the house of God.
consecrated - means set apart
The tithe is set apart to the Lord.
It's the same with adultery. You have to be deceptive.
Stealing is deceptive.
Stealthy - root word is steal
We are not talking about the military. They need to fly under the radar and not be detected. But that's exactly what a thief wants to do is to not be detected.
A thief learns how to work in darkness, where Satan is.
But the children of Israel [a]committed a trespass regarding the accursed[b] things, for Achan the son of Carmi, the son of [c]Zabdi, the son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, took of the accursed things; so the anger of the Lord burned against the children of Israel.
Israel was going into the Promise Land. It was a bountiful land. It was a land of provision flowing with milk and honey.
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It's all through scripture. God is trying to put the principle of trust into His kids.
He started with Adam and Eve. He told them that they could have every tree in the garden except one. Really what He was saying to them was to trust Him.
Cain and Abel were another example of this.
Cain didn't bring his first fruit because he wanted to see how much he had before he gave his offering.
It takes trust to give the first part.
God said to give the first born.
It takes trust to give the first sheep instead of waiting until you have ten sheep to give Him one.
God is saying that if we trust Him, He will provide!
According to Pastor Robert, most eastern cultures invoked the death penalty for stealing. Israel was the only nation that didn't do this because God came up with restitution.
The majority of Exodus 22 tells how a thief can make restitution.
Why does a thief need to make restitution?
Pastor Robert found the answer in the word restitution.
Restitution is made up of two Hebrew words.
1st meaning - to restore to its original condition
2nd meaning - to remove guilt and shame
If you hurt someone, you can not pay them back.
They can forgive you, but you can't pay them back.
His dad told him that he didn't need to write him that check. He said that he had forgiven Robert a long time ago.
Pastor Robert didn't know that that his dad knew that he had been stealing his silver dollars. He asked his dad how he knew. His dad said that he kept putting silver dollars in his piggy bank, but it kept getting lighter.
Pastor Robert asked him why he didn't confront him about it.
His dad is a very Godly man and he just wanted Robert to repent.
He was just like our heavenly Father.
God has already forgiven us through Christ, but He would like to restore us what the enemy has stolen from us. He would like to remove the guilt and shame we feel!
Pastor Robert challenges us to ask the Holy Spirit what He is saying to us through this message.
image by Gordan Johnson on PIxabay
God wants to bless us, but He can't if we are stealing,
and especially if we are stealing from Him!
LESSON 7: THE PRINCIPLE OF INTIMACY
Click to watch Robert Morris' message:
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In this RelatI0nship studies, Pastor Robert strives to focus on the principles behind the 10 Commandments that still relate to us today, that the New Testament affirms, and how these principles will enhance our relationship with God and with others. This 7th Commandment highlights the principle of Intimacy which instructs us how to have intimacy with God, with others, and especially in marriage because of what it refers to.
14 “You shall not commit adultery.
3 WAYS PEOPLE COMMIT ADULTERY:
BODY, SOUL, SPIRIT
(Remember we as humans, are made up of 3 parts: body, soul, and spirit).
Many people don't realize that committing adultery can affect your spirit, but Pastor Robert will show us in scripture how it can.
You can commit adultery in your body.
18 Flee sexual immorality. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body. 19 Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? 20 For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body [a]and in your spirit, which are God’s.
1 Corinthians 6:18-20
According to Pastor Robert, most believers think we should keep all the commandments except the 4th Commandment of keeping the Sabbath.
Non-believers however, find good reasons for keeping all the commandments except the 7th one. They think it is a bit old fashioned not to have sex outside marriage. They believe some of the things in the Bible are out of date.
Pastor Robert says that there is a principle behind this and in this message he may discuss some things that you might not think would be discussed in church, or by a pastor.
Pastor Robert starts by asking if God created sex. He states that yes, He did.
He continues by saying that God formed our sexual parts. He states that God formed male and female parts to fit together perfectly. God formed us to have intimacy and pleasure. He explains that he needs to say this because there is a good sexual desire and it is intended for marriage.
The word lust in the Greek means a strong desire, or a strong craving. Jesus actually used this word in a good way in scripture.
Fervent desire is translated as lust. Pastor Robert points out that Jesus actually lusted for them to eat this meal with him.
Pastor Robert is trying to show us that there is a good desire (lust).
Society has given the meaning of lust a bad connotation.
Pastor Robert advises to enjoy you sex life with your spouse so you aren't tempted to do something else.
He says that there's almost a feeling in the church that you have to be a prude if you are going to serve God. People don't think pastors understand strong urges.
God wants you to have fun in marriage. We don't think Jesus could understand this and how strong this urge is. Pastor Robert continues by pointing out that He created it. He was human. He became human. He lived through puberty - through the teenage years, through his twenties and into his thirties and still remained pure. Pastor Robert warns to never believe that there was anything between Jesus and Mary Magdalene. No history would ever support that idea. He states that all evidence shows that Mary Magdalene was older that Jesus' mother.
Pastor Robert reviews this part of the message by reiterating that you can commit adultery in your body but God designed you to have full pleasure in marriage.
You can commit adultery in your soul.
32 Whoever commits adultery with a woman lacks understanding;
He who does so destroys his own soul.
Pastor Robert states that he understand that God can redeem, but if any of us have had a mistake in this area, we understand how it spoiled our life in this area.
Pastor Robert's goal is to get us to make a choice every week no matter what he is preaching about. He says he puts things in his messages that target our minds and emotions. He does this very consciously. Half of the people listening to his messages lean more toward making their decisions based on what they think. The other half of the people lean more toward making decisions based on how they feel about what was said. He states that there is nothing wrong with this. It's the way God created us.
Pastor Robert points out that we can commit adultery in our minds and emotions.
You can have wrong relationships in your mind and with someone and in your emotions with someone.
Any thought or feeling toward another person that is inappropriate outside of marriage is wrong.
I charge you, O daughters of Jerusalem,
By the gazelles or by the does of the field,
Do not stir up nor awaken love
Until it pleases.
Song of Solomon 3:5
This scripture refers to until it's time to be pleasurable to God and it will be pleasurable to you in marriage.
Pastor Robert states that there are things that lead to adultery.
Fantastic - appearing as it is conceived by an unrestrained imagination.
Notice the word unrestrained. The root of the word unrestrained is fantasy.
Pastor Robert points out that the unrestrained is the concerning part.
He says that God actually fashioned us to live a fantasy with a person - this person being our spouse. For us to say, what we have with our spouse is like a fantasy is fantastic! Pastor Robert says that is why this is the principle of intimacy. He says you can't image the intimacy you can experience with one person when you keep the Lord in that relationship.
Affairs start in the soul before they ever get to the body.
Adultery in the Heart
27 “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’
28 But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.
The heart is made up of the soul and the spirit. You haven't done it in your body, but you have already done it in your heart. You have already committed adultery.
Pastor Robert points out that lust precedes adultery, but asks what precedes lust.
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Pastor Robert gives these examples of looking leading to lust in the Bible:
Potiphar's wife cast longing eyes at Joseph (Genesis 39:7). She looked before she lusted.
David saw Bathsheba from his balcony. He looked and that stirred up lust which lead to adultery.
31 “I have made a covenant with my eyes;
Why then should I [a]look upon a young woman?
Something happens in the spirit that most of us do not realize with adultery.
24 Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be[a] joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
Genesis 2:24 (when marriage began)
Flesh - one body
joined - God created the male and female parts to fit together.
The Old King James version uses the word cleave instead of join.
Many refer to this scripture as "leave and cleave."
This same scripture is repeated four times in the New Testament Jesus says it and Paul says it. Three times it refers to marriage, but one time it relates to 1 Corinthians 6:15-16.
15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a harlot? Certainly not! 16 Or do you not know that he who is joined to a harlot is one body with her? For “the two,” He says, “shall become one flesh.”
1 Corinthians 6:15-16
Bodies are members of Christ.
Pastor Robert wishes we could think about - how we treat our bodies.
harlot - immoral person
This scripture is about marriage.
If a married man joins himself with another woman, he now becomes one with her.
There is a leaving and a cleaving and a oneness that happens.
We are talking about the body, but Pastor Robert will tell us how it happens in the spirit.
He says the problem is that there is a leaving.
Pastor Robert states that many times parents have told him that they could tell when their sons started having sex with their girlfriends because they left them. He says that something in the spirit realm happened. How else would they know?
In counseling with couples, Pastor Robert says the offended party (the one in the marriage that was innocent), says she could tell within a few days or weeks when her husband started having an affair because she could feel something change in their relationship. She felt that he left her, because in order to cleave, he had to leave.
You can leave emotionally too, but Pastor Robert says something happens in the spirit too.
17 But he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him.
1 Corinthians 6:17
Glorify God in your body and in your spirit.
19 Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own?
1 Corinthians 6:19
When you join with the Lord, you become one spirit with Him. But if you commit adultery, in order to become joined with someone else, you have to leave someone.
Pastor Robert asks if we really think we can take the members of Christ(see the above scripture) and join them with a harlot?
Would we think everything would be right in our relationship with God when we are committing adultery in our body or our soul?
Pastor Robert is not saying we loose our salvation. Our salvation is based on grace.
He says though, that we loose our intimacy with God.
He says not to try to convince ourselves that we can have a vital, ongoing, passionate, intimate relationship with Jesus when we are having an affair.
We leave Jesus in the spirit when we commit adultery.
There is a leaving and a cleaving.
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Pastor Robert explains why any type of premarital or extra-marital acts will destroy our lives.
Pastor Robert said that he was speaking to a youth group one time and a young lady asked him why premarital sex was wrong if the two people loved each other, and were planning to get married anyway after they finished their degrees.
Pastor Robert, first said that he and is wife never told their children to finish their degrees before they got married because they believe it is better to be pure when you get married. He said they told their children that they would continue paying for their educations even if they got married before they got their degrees.
Pastor Robert told the young woman what mattered was the blessing of God. He explained that premarital sex would destroy her marriage. Premarital sex would require she and her boyfriend to sneak around. They would have to lie, and would start developing lots of habits that shouldn't develop and that God never intended them to develop. They will develop an appetite for sneaking around to have sex. Once they get married, they wouldn't need to sneak around anymore. They wouldn't be able to satisfy this developed appetite. Pretty soon their spouse will start flirting with someone at work and start sneaking around trying to satisfy the appetite that was developed. It may lead to a divorce and marriage. Then the cycle would start again.
Literally, this is why some people say they would rather live together than get married because it will "ruin it." Basically, they know deep down in their hearts, even if they don't know God, that they are doing something wrong.
This is why some people have been 3, 4, 5, or 6 times because they created an appetite that can not be satisfied.
So, what do you do if you have had sex with someone else after you have gotten married?
You confess and repent.
Bring it out into the light because Satan works in darkness.
Because he says the people that fall in this area are humans!
He adds that pastors are human.
He is excited when we finally get out of darkness and into the light!
Pastor Robert reminds us that if we violate this commandment,
we will not have an intimate relationship
with the spouse the Lord intended for us
with the Lord.
LESSON 6: THE PRINCIPLE OF LOVE
Click to watch Robert Morris' message:
This week's lesson is based on the 6th Commandment "You shall not murder."
Pastor Robert explains that there is a difference between murdering and killing.
Murder means to take a life when you don't have the authority to do so.
There are times when law enforcement, military, engagement in war, and the judicial system take a life and that is different than murder. Even the Bible implemented capital punishment.
15 Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.
1 John 3:15
9 For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” [a]“You shall not bear false witness,” “You shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
There are 5 points in this lesson.
photo by Sharon Rosseels on Unsplash
1. Hate precedes murder.
The story of Joseph is good example of this point because his brothers hated him.
4 But when his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they hated him and could not speak peaceably to him. 5 Now Joseph had a dream, and he told it to his brothers; and they hated him even more.
18 Now when they saw him afar off, even before he came near them, they conspired against him to kill him.
They conspired to murder Joseph because they hated him.
11 “But if anyone hates his neighbor, lies in wait for him, rises against him and strikes him mortally, so that he dies, and he flees to one of these cities,
The above scripture in Deuteronomy gives another example of hate leading to murder. We know he murdered him because he hated him.
Here is a third example of this point in Joshua.
5 Then if the avenger of blood pursues him, they shall not deliver the slayer into his hand, because he struck his neighbor unintentionally, but did not hate him beforehand.
Pastor Robert asks if hate precedes murder, what then precedes hate?
2. Anger precedes hate.
Pastor Robert explains that before you hate someone, you get angry at them. He continues by stating that the first murder in the Bible was because of Cain's anger.
3 And [a]in the process of time it came to pass that Cain brought an offering of the fruit of the ground to the Lord. 4 Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat. And the Lord respected Abel and his offering, 5 but He did not respect Cain and his offering. And Cain was very angry, and his countenance fell.
8 Now Cain [a]talked with Abel his [b]brother; and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother and killed him.
Pastor explains that anger is an emotion, but we can actually be angry and not sin. There is a verse that says to be angry, but do not sin. Anger is not a sin.
It's what we do with the anger.
According to Pastor Robert, we blow up because we have anger that is unresolved!
It is unresolved anger that is just sitting in us that causes us to explode.
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What precedes anger?
3. An offense precedes anger.
Cain was offended at God and Abel.
That is why he got angry.
God accepted Abel's offering and not Cain's.
10 And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another.
2 And when the Sabbath had come, He began to teach in the synagogue. And many hearing Him were astonished, saying, “Where did this Man get these things? And what wisdom is this which is given to Him, that such mighty works are performed by His hands! 3 Is this not the carpenter, the Son of Mary, and brother of James, Joses, Judas, and Simon? And are not His sisters here with us?” So they were offended at Him.
astonished - In this case, astonished doesn't have a good meaning. In this case, according to the Strong's Concordance, it means to strike, to expel by a blow.
When Jesus began to teach and have wisdom, the people got angry because they viewed Him as just a carpenter that grew up in their town. They were so offended by His popularity, and His wisdom that they wanted to strike Him!
We see the people offended by what happened in Luke 4 as well when Jesus went to His hometown and read a passage about the Messiah in book of Isaiah. The people were offended at Jesus because His did not meet their expectations. They viewed Him as a simple carpenter, not the Messiah. He was saying something that they did not understand!
Jesus Rejected at Nazareth
16 So He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up. And as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read. 17 And He was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written: 18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor;
He has sent Me [i]to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are [j]oppressed;
19 To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.” 20 Then He closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all who were in the synagogue were fixed on Him. 21 And He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” 22 So all bore witness to Him, and marveled at the gracious words which proceeded out of His mouth. And they said, “Is this not Joseph’s son?” 23 He said to them, “You will surely say this proverb to Me, ‘Physician, heal yourself! Whatever we have heard done in Capernaum,[k] do also here in Your country.’ ” 24 Then He said, “Assuredly, I say to you, no prophet is accepted in his own country. 25 But I tell you truly, many widows were in Israel in the days of Elijah, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, and there was a great famine throughout all the land; 26 but to none of them was Elijah sent except to [l]Zarephath, in the region of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow. 27 And many lepers were in Israel in the time of Elisha the prophet, and none of them was cleansed except Naaman the Syrian.” 28 So all those in the synagogue, when they heard these things, were filled with [m]wrath, 29 and rose up and thrust Him out of the city; and they led Him to the brow of the hill on which their city was built, that they might throw Him down over the cliff. 30 Then passing through the midst of them, He went His way.
Luke 4: 16-30
What causes an offense?
4. Unfilled expectations precede offense.
Pastor Robert believes that Luke 7 contains the strongest passages in the Bible and one of the most enlightening.
John the Baptist Sends Messengers to Jesus
18 Then the disciples of John reported to him concerning all these things. 19 And John, calling two of his disciples to him, sent them to [a]Jesus, saying, “Are You the Coming One, or [b]do we look for another?”
Pastor Robert wants us to think about this...
John the Baptist was Jesus' cousin.
He was filled with the Holy Spirit in his mother's (Elizabeth) womb when Mary (Jesus' mother) walked into the room.
John the Baptist pointed at Jesus and said "Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world."
He also said that he should not baptize Jesus, but that Jesus should baptize him instead.
Pastor Robert makes the point that what John the Baptist was really saying was that Jesus was the one!
Later when John's disciples came to him and told him that Jesus was baptizing more people than he was, John told them that he was not the one, that Jesus was the one!
30 He must increase, but I must decrease.
Why must John decrease?
Because Jesus was the one!
Why then did John send his disciples to ask Jesus if he was the one?
22 Jesus answered and said to them, “Go and tell John the things you have seen and heard: that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the poor have the gospel preached to them. 23 And blessed is he who is not [f]offended because of Me.22 Jesus answered and said to them, “Go and tell John the things you have seen and heard: that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the poor have the gospel preached to them. 23 And blessed is he who is not [f]offended because of Me.
After Jesus had been in the city seven days, John asked his disciples if they had mentioned to Jesus that he was in jail. Jesus told John's disciples to go and tell John that people are being healed and blessed are those who don't get their feelings hurt because of Him.
John had an expectation that Jesus would come get him out of jail, or at least come and see him.
This applies to us. For example, when we have a friend who says he is going to do something and then he doesn't, we become offended.
Maybe we have an expectation our employer is going to do something and then he doesn't.
The biblical definition of the Greek word offense is "stumbling stone."
The word offense comes from the Greek word scandalon.
It's where we get our English word scandal from.
If someone does something scandalous in our eyes, it becomes a stumbling stone for us.
He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
2 I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress;
My God, in Him I will trust.” 3 Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the [a]fowler
And from the perilous pestilence.
Pastor Robert says the amazing thing is that we actually give Satan the scandalon because of the things we say. We say something like, "Well if he ever did that, I'd never forgive him," or "If she ever did that, I wouldn't be able to get over that."
You just gave Satan the one thing he needed to end your marriage!
You gave him the stick to set a trap for your husband.
Satan can quit working on all the other areas and just concentrate on that particular area to set a trap for your husband.
33 As it is written: “Behold, I lay in Zion a stumbling stone and rock of offense,
And whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.”
Pastor Robert challenges us to consider this...
For example, say you are in a relationship with someone and they offend you.
What they actually did was to leave a rock in your path.
You come along and you see that rock.
Now you have a choice.
You can stumble over it or you can step over it.
You could even pick it up and show it to everyone else.
In review, an unfilled expectation might lead to an offense.
An offense might lead to anger.
Anger could lead to hate.
Hate could lead to murder.
The opposite of hate is love, so we much discuss love.
What precedes love?
5. Forgiveness precedes love.
Love Your Enemies
43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 [a]But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you,
Pastor Robert asks how in the world can we forgive someone who hates us, who is our enemy?
Pastor Robert will show us how hate leads to murder and how forgiveness leads to love in one Bible story. It is the story of Jacob and Esau.
Jacob stole Esau's birthright and his blessing.
Jacob Escapes from Esau
41 So Esau hated Jacob because of the blessing with which his father blessed him, and Esau said in his heart, “The days of mourning for my father [a]are at hand; then I will kill my brother Jacob.”
We see in the above passage that Esau hated Jacob and intended to kill him.
20 years later...
Jacob and Esau Meet
33 Now Jacob lifted his eyes and looked, and there, Esau was coming, and with him were four hundred men. So he divided the children among Leah, Rachel, and the two maidservants.
What would you do if someone who hated you was coming to greet you with 400 men?
4 But Esau ran to meet him, and embraced him, and fell on his neck and kissed him, and they wept.
How did Esau go from hating Jacob and wanting to murder him, to loving him and embracing him?
Esau had forgiven Jacob!
That's the only way!
Pastor Robert almost included a point 6 in this message.
It would have been based on the question what precedes forgiveness.
Grace precedes forgiveness.
How do you forgive?
Forgiveness is giving grace.
So how do you give grace?
Pastor Robert answers by stating that you have to receive grace.
You can not receive grace if you haven't received it.
If you have a problem giving forgiveness, then you have a problem receiving forgiveness.
Freely you have received, freely give.
Pastor Robert continues by saying that if you don't receive freely, then you don't give freely.
In other words, if you feel like you have to earn forgiveness from God, you will make others earn forgiveness from you.
But once you understand grace - that you are forgiven freely and that you do not deserve to be forgiven, then you will forgive others that don't deserve to be forgiven.
When God forgave you, He released you from the punishment of sin.
He released you from judgement.
So when you truly forgive someone, it means that you release them.
Pastor Robert says that you don't have to tell a person that you have forgiven them because in some instances that person doesn't know that you were offended.
Pastor Robert continues by explaining that you don't forgive people who do good things to you, or who are nice to you. You forgive people who are mean to you and offend and hurt you.
Again, he states that he is not really concerned that we will murder someone, but he is concerned that we might get caught in a trap and could hate, be angry, be offended, and then not forgive them.
He asks us to ask the Holy Spirit what He is saying to us through this message. Is there someone that has wronged you? You don't want to carry the offense around for years. Let the Lord to bring any person, or persons to mind that you need to forgive.
Choose by an act of your will to forgive them.
LESSON 5: THE PRINCIPLE OF HONOR
Click to watch Robert Morris' message:
"And since God knew that mankind would fall and grew up in a fallen world and some people would have really bad parents, just to be honest about it, why would God put this in the Top 10? What is He trying to do?"
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1. Honor produces faith.
12 “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
"upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you" - means the Promise Land
Pastor Robert continues by stating that the Lord wanted them to learn the principle of honor at any early age because later the Lord became their authority.
(Their parents represented the Lord when they were young).
Pastor Robert concludes that if they wouldn't honor their parents,
they wouldn't honor Him.
These people did not enter the Promise Land (Honor produces faith)
because of their unbelief.
19 So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.
Pastor Robert shows us again in the following scripture how honor produces faith and unbelief is a result of not honoring.
Jesus Rejected at Nazareth
6 Then He went out from there and came to His own country, and His disciples followed Him. 2 And when the Sabbath had come, He began to teach in the synagogue. And many hearing Him were astonished, saying, “Where did this Man get these things? And what wisdom is this which is given to Him, that such mighty works are performed by His hands! 3 Is this not the carpenter, the Son of Mary, and brother of James, Joses, Judas, and Simon? And are not His sisters here with us?” So they were offended at Him.
He - Jesus - to His own country
astonishment - not in a good way
"Isn't this just a carpenter?" - a prophet does have honor except in his own country, among his own relatives
his own country
his own relatives
As a result, Jesus could not do a mighty work there.
What caused unbelief?
They didn't honor Jesus, so they had unbelief.
Robert explains that because we know them, we know their faults. We've seen them angry, and upset. We've heard them say things that they shouldn't say. People don't honor people that they should honor if they are in their own family.
He continues by reminding us about the Roman Centurion who asked Jesus to heal his servant. Jesus offered to come to his home to heal his servant, but the Centurion said He didn't need to come to his home. The Centurion explained that he too was a man of authority. He explained that he too had authority over him and had authority under him. He said when he told his servants to go and they went. He told Jesus that He just needed say the word and his servant would be healed.
Image from ArtCoreStudios on Pixabay
Jesus remarked that He hadn't found this great faith in all of Israel! The Centurion was a Roman. Why did he understand about faith so much?
It was because he understood authority.
What's the principle of honor?
To honor those in authority.
Pastor Robert says that he believes that the reason that we are probably the most faithless generation since the book of Acts,
is because we are
a very dishonoring generation!
He states that the Lord is trying to help us understand that honoring our father and mother helps us learn to honor authority. That in return gives us faith. He asks us if we have ever heard someone say that no one is going to tell them what to do? Isn't it amazing that that person always ends up jail or in the army!
2. Honor produces blessings.
This 5th commandment is also found in the New Testament.
Children and Parents
6 Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. 2 “Honor your father and mother,” which is the first commandment with promise: 3 “that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth.”
"that it maybe well with us"
Quoting from Deuteronomy 5 - The 10 Commandments are found in Exodus 20 and Deuteronomy 5.
What's the difference?
Pastor Robert explains that you obey when you are growing up in your parent's home.
Then you honor them when you are grown up and have your own home.
He said that he always told his children that as long as he was paying the bills, they had to do what he said.
He continues by saying that as a parent, your hope is that they begin to honor you, so that you can give them more freedom. As a result, a teenager gets more freedom if he or she understands the principle of honor. If they don't and are not maturing, then as a parent you have to keep teaching the teenagers to obey.
He states that we have some 40 year olds that still haven't learned the principle of honor. They go from job to another because they have the attitude that no one is going to tell them what to do.
Image from IOImages on Pixabay
Submit to Government
13 Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will [a]bring judgment on themselves.
subject- This word comes from a military background. It means to submit to, without any question as to the troop leader because your life and others' lives could depend on it. Subject means to be obedient without any questions.
2 And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.
Let's look at the verse before 52.
51 Then He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was [a]subject to them, but His mother kept all these things in her heart.
Jesus was subject to them.
This word subject, is the same word as in Romans 13.
Pastor Robert points out that if Jesus was subject to His parents, shouldn't we be also?
Notice it says in Romans 13:2 that "those who resist, bring judgment on themselves".
15 “And he who strikes his father or his mother shall surely be put to death.
17 “And he who curses his father or his mother shall surely be put to death.
20 Whoever curses his father or his mother,
His lamp will be put out in deep darkness.
Below are two references talking about people who are under the judgement of God. Those who resist authority bring judgements on themselves.
30 backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,
2 For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
2 Timothy 3:2
Pastor Robert points out that the passages in Proverbs 30 in the Old Testament talk about a generation that doesn't honor it's father and mother. It could be any generation that begins without honoring their fathers and mothers and end without honoring their fathers and mothers.
In these passages, Pastor Robert says that there are two verses in the middle that even commentators don't know why they are included. Pastor Robert says the reason that they are included are because it happens to people who don't honor their fathers and mothers.
11 There is a generation that curses its father,
And does not bless its mother.
12 There is a generation that is pure in its own eyes,
Yet is not washed from its filthiness.
13 There is a generation—oh, how lofty are their eyes!
And their eyelids are [a]lifted up.
14 There is a generation whose teeth are likeswords,
And whose fangs are like knives,
To devour the poor from off the earth,
And the needy from among men. 15 The leech has two daughters--
Give and Give! There are three things that are never satisfied,
Four never say, “Enough!”:
16 The grave,
The barren womb,
The earth that is not satisfied with water--
And the fire never says, “Enough!” 17 The eye that mocks his father,
And scorns obedience to his mother,
The ravens of the valley will pick it out,
And the young eagles will eat it.
This generation is a generation of entitlement.
They say give and give to me and are like leaches. They can never have enough because they did not grow up with the principle of honor.
There are consequences for not honoring parents and authorities.
We are supposed to honor a lot of people!
Honor one another.
That includes everybody!
image by Open Clipart Vectors on Pixabay
3. Honor produces destiny.
We have read this commandment in the Old Testament and in the New Testament. Now we read it again in Deuteronomy 5.
16 ‘Honor your father and your mother, as the Lordyour God has commanded you, that your days may be long, and that it may be well with you in the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
"in the land which the Lord your God is giving you"
In this passage, the Lord is referring to a "promise land" for them. Pastor Robert adds that God has a "promise land" for us as well. The Lord has a calling and a destiny on our lives that things will not go well with us if we don't honor our fathers and our mothers. We must honor our fathers and mothers in the land the Lord God is giving us so that we will live long in the calling and the destiny He has upon our lives.
Pastor Robert clarifies that the Promise land is not heaven because the Promise Land still has enemies in it.
Heaven does not have any enemies in it!
Defilement Comes from Within
15 Then the scribes and Pharisees who were from Jerusalem came to Jesus, saying, 2 “Why do Your disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat bread.” 3 He answered and said to them, “Why do you also transgress the commandment of God because of your tradition? 4 For God commanded, saying, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘He who curses father or mother, let him be put to death.’ 5 But you say, ‘Whoever says to his father or mother, “Whatever profit you might have received from me is a gift to God”-- 6 then he need not honor his father [a]or mother.’ Thus you have made the [b]commandment of God of no effect by your tradition. 7 Hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy about you, saying: 8 ‘These people [c]draw near to Me with their mouth,
And honor Me with their lips,
But their heart is far from Me.
Pastor Robert states that the Children of Israel did not honor their parents in their old age.
Some things about honor:
Honor is not what you say. It is what you do and what you do in your heart.
Do we really honor our parents?
What if we had bad parents?
Some people had heathen parents. Some people grew up in a Christian home or had churched parents who were very bad. Pastor Robert stated that he has seen more abusive instances that difficult to get healed from church situations. This is because it is tough when your parents are quoting the Bible to you and acting a different way.
So how do we honor dishonorable people?
He continues by adding that you choose to understand that you were raised by humans and that you don't know how they were raised, or what they went through.
Most of them did not have the truth that we have now.
Many of them didn't know anything about the Holy Spirit and if they did it was a legalistic version which is not the Holy Spirit.
They did not know anything about inner healing, deliverance, baptism of the Holy Spirit, or delving into the Word. Their churches were form, tradition, and ritual.
Church was a cultural thing instead of a spiritual experience.
Pastor Robert said he had great parents, but they weren't perfect. He said he will never dishonor them. Things have gone well for him in the land that God has called him to and he believes it is because of this principle.
According to Pastor Robert, it is time that we stop thinking
the 10 Commandments are old fashioned
start thinking that they are
So, what do you do if you have dishonorable parents?
Pastor Robert states that you forgive them because if you don't forgive them, then you are the one who is going to bring evil upon yourself!
You forgive them and understand that they are human.
You don't have to honor their actions.
You just have to say you forgive them in your heart.
Photo by Jack Sharp on Unsplash
In conclusion, Pastor Robert tells about a man named Todd White who has been attending his church for about 13 years.
Todd travels all over the world speaking. He moved to the Dallas area because God called him to Gateway Church. Pastor Robert said that he meets with him, ministers to him, and mentors him. He is so impressed with how Todd loves God. Todd came out of a horrible home, yet he never dishonored his parents. He grew up in a terrible home and is being used all over the world to bring people to Jesus!
Pastor Robert remarks that these 10 Commandments are principles that even if you don't understand, but respect that they are God's Word, and determine to obey them, there will be fruit on the other side!
He challenges us to ask the Holy Spirit what He is saying to us through this message. He says God can touch our hearts and change something in us!
LESSON 4: THE PRINCIPLE OF REST
8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: 10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: 11 For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.
This commandment is the longest commandment.
holy - means set apart
Why set apart? Set apart from the other six days.
According to Pastor Robert, we don't keep the 10 Commandments to be saved .
We are saved by grace through Jesus.
But there are blessings if we keep the 10 Commandments and consequences if we don't.
Pastor Robert says that it seems like the believer today believes that we keep 9 of the 10 Commandments and that we don't need to keep this one about resting on the Sabbath. Why?
1. There are reasons that God said to rest.
a. It gives God the opportunity to provide for us supernaturally.
In the scripture below, Moses is talking to the people when God provided manna in the wilderness.
23 Then he said to them, “This is what the Lord has said: ‘Tomorrow is a Sabbath rest, a holy Sabbath to the Lord. Bake what you will bake today, and boil what you will boil; and lay up for yourselves all that remains, to be kept until morning.’ ” 24 So they laid it up till morning, as Moses commanded; and it did not stink, nor were there any worms in it. 25 Then Moses said, “Eat that today, for today is a Sabbath to the Lord; today you will not find it in the field. 26 Six days you shall gather it, but on the seventh day, the Sabbath, there will be none.” 27 Now it happened that some of the people went out on the seventh day to gather, but they found none. 28 And the Lord said to Moses, “How long do you refuse to keep My commandments and My laws? 29 See! For the Lord has given you the Sabbath; therefore He gives you on the sixth day bread for two days. Let every man remain in his place; let no man go out of his place on the seventh day.” 30 So the people rested on the seventh day.
Pastor Roberts explains that the people gathered only the manna they would need for one day at a time. The people didn't believe the manna would be there the next day so they gathered extra. When they gathered and kept more manna than they needed for one day, that extra manna spoiled.
They weren't trusting God for provision.
On the sixth day, the Lord told them to gather enough for the Sabbath as well, and that that manna would not spoil. He was telling the people that they would not find the manna on the Sabbath.
God will not provide for you if you work on the 7th day. Pastor Robert continues by saying that the Lord will provide enough on the 6th day for the 7th day as well, but if you try to work on the 7th day, there will be no provision from the Lord on that day.
The 10 Commandments are also found in Deuteronomy 5.
Deuteronomy 5 uses the word observe.
The Lord reminds that people that they used to be slaves and He redeemed them!
Slaves don't get a day off. Only the wealthy, the elite, or royalty do.
God reminded the people that they didn't get a day off when they were in bondage.
Pastor Robert compares this to tithing.
He says that the Lord can do more with 90% than we can do with 100%!
In other words, God can do more in 6 days than we can in 7 days.
Pastor Robert says if we want to know how much He can do in 6 days to just look around!
Pastor Robert read a book that compared fast food restaurants.
b. It gives us the opportunity to rest and be refreshed.
14 You shall keep the Sabbath, therefore, for it is holy to you. Everyone who [a]profanes it shall surely be put to death; for whoever does any work on it, that person shall be cut off from among his people. 15 Work shall be done for six days, but the seventh is the Sabbath of rest, holy to the Lord. Whoever does any work on the Sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death. 16 Therefore the children of Israel shall keep the Sabbath, to observe the Sabbath throughout their generations as a perpetual covenant. 17 It is a sign between Me and the children of Israel forever; for in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day He rested and was refreshed.’ ”
Pastor Robert reminds us that we have been graphed into the nation of Israel.
perpetual - means forever
As Pastor Robert points out, we have to understand that the Sabbath was the greatest sign to the world for thousands of years, because no other nation other than Israel rested one day a week! Back then they would be doing business with Israel and be ready to work on the 7th day and Israel would explain that they didn't work on the Sabbath because it is the day the Lord rested after creating the world in 6 days.
They wondered, the Lord who?
It was a way to witness and share their faith.
Today as well, it's a sign that we as believers don't have to work 7 days a week!
It's a sign about what God did!
It's all through scripture!
Pastor Robert states that as a theologian it is hard to read that God rested. How could an omnipotent God need to be refreshed?
This is a God who never gets tired and never sleeps!
In the Hebrew, the word refreshed means "took breath."
God breathed in!
For 6 days, He had been creating (breathing out by speaking).
On the 7th day, He breathed in and He was refreshed!
"Ever heard the old the saying...just let me catch my breath?"
"The Sabbath is a day to breath and relax!"
Pastor Robert read about an average Sabbath for a Jewish person.
He says many prayers are spoken, but he gives us a condensed version of it.
Sabbath begins at sunset because in the story of creation,
there was evening and there was morning and that was one day.
Shabbat candles are lit and a blessing is recited no later that 18 minutes before sunset. Two candles are lit representing this commandment about rest
written in both Exodus and Deuteronomy. The family then has a brief evening service.
When they get home, they enjoy a festive, leisurely dinner. By then, it might be 9 p.m. The family then has an hour to talk, study Torah, and then go to sleep. The next morning Shabbat services start around 9 a.m. and go until about noon. After services, the family have another festive, leisurely meal. Then the family studies Torah for a while, talks, takes an afternoon walk, plays checkers, take naps, or engage in other leisurely activities. It is traditional to have a third meal before Shabbat is over.
Shabbat is over at night fall when there are three stars visible, approximately 40 minutes after sunset. At the conclusion of Shabbat, a blessing is recited regarding the division between the sacred and the secular, between Shabbat and the working days. Shabbat is a full day when properly observed and is very relaxing.
Pastor Robert says Shabbat sounds like having Thanksgiving once a week to him.
He asks what is wrong with that!
2. There are consequences then we don't rest.
Penalty for Violating the Sabbath
32 Now while the children of Israel were in the wilderness, they found a man gathering sticks on the Sabbath day. 33 And those who found him gathering sticks brought him to Moses and Aaron, and to all the congregation. 34 They put him under guard, because it had not been explained what should be done to him. 35 Then the Lord said to Moses, “The man must surely be put to death; all the congregation shall stone him with stones outside the camp.” 36 So, as the Lordcommanded Moses, all the congregation brought him outside the camp and stoned him with stones, and he died.
gathering sticks: not murdering anyone
4 main things punished by death in the Old Testament:
-not keeping the Sabbath
Pastor Robert asks why not keeping the Sabbath would be right up there with murder and adultery?
He says to remember that there is a principle behind each commandment!
The scripture below occurred when Israel was taken out of the land for 70 years.
20 And those who escaped from the sword he carried away to Babylon, where they became servants to him and his sons until the rule of the kingdom of Persia, 21 to fulfill the word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah, until the land had enjoyed her Sabbaths. As long as she lay desolate she kept Sabbath, to fulfill seventy years.
2 Chronicles 36:20-21
"The land enjoyed her Sabbaths."
Pastor Robert warns that there are consequences and that some of us maybe dying quicker than we want to because we just won't receive a gift of a day off!
This is not a bad gift!
Pastor Robert tells about a time he was trying to schedule a time to have lunch with a pastor friend. They couldn't find an available date. Finally Pastor Robert suggested that they meet the next Thursday. The other pastor declined saying that he had nothing scheduled that day - that he was scheduled to do nothing. Pastor Robert was confused about it until his friend explained what had happened to him. When he was 40 years old, he was in the hospital dying. All of his internal organs were shutting down and the doctors didn't know why.
The Lord said ok and the pastor immediately felt strength come in his body. He got up from that hospital bed, unplugged himself, got dressed, walked out of the hospital, and has not been back since that day!
3. There are blessings when we rest.
Pastor Robert wants to show us a principle...
Jesus Is Lord of the Sabbath
23 Now it happened that He went through the grainfields on the Sabbath; and as they went His disciples began to pluck the heads of grain. 24 And the Pharisees said to Him, “Look, why do they do what is not lawful on the Sabbath?” 25 But He said to them, “Have you never read what David did when he was in need and hungry, he and those with him: 26 how he went into the house of God in the days of Abiathar the high priest, and ate the showbread, which is not lawful to eat except for the priests, and also gave some to those who were with him?” 27 And He said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath. 28 Therefore the Son of Man is also Lord of the Sabbath.”
Pastor Robert is trying to show us that this is not a legalistic matter with God. Jesus said that they hadn't made man to serve the Sabbath. They made the Sabbath to serve us!
Do we realize that God could have made a 6 day week?
The 7 day week came from God!
He could have worked 6 days and started the work all over again.
He is the one that created the 7 day week, with one day of it being for rest.
The Sabbath is a gift to us!
There is an old Jewish saying that says
"More that Israel has kept the Sabbath, the Sabbath has kept Israel!"
Saturdays are Sabbaths for Pastor Robert because of his schedule.
Our Sabbath does not have to be on Sunday.
The number one question that Pastor Robert is asked about his Sabbath is what he does on his Sabbath.
Pastor Robert is still puzzled by why some believers think that this commandment is the only one that it is ok to break!
He asks why we would break this one and not the rest of them?
He said that he learned the principle of rest the hard way.
He said that years ago he was working non stop, not understanding this principle. He had just gotten back from a trip where he had been promoting getting help for starving children to get fed, and for water wells to be dug for them.
He was exhausted when he got home.
He said he was going to get dressed the next morning and when he opened up his underwear drawer, there was only one pair of underwear left. He was so exhausted that he couldn't think past wandering what he would wear the next day. Pastors should wear underwear. He couldn't problem solve and think about doing laundry or going shopping to get more pairs. Then he realized he was out of clean socks and that took him over the edge! He just sat on the floor and cried. He really thought that he was loosing it!
Later that day, he went to lunch with Pastor Tom and told Pastor Tom that he thought he was loosing his mind. Pastor Tom him that he wasn't loosing his mind. He wasn't feeling this way because he was loosing his mind. It was because he was exhausted. He told Robert that anyone would feel that way if they kept Robert's schedule. So Pastor Robert talked and prayed with the elders of the church. They began to get ridged about scheduling time off for Robert. That's when they came up with the sabbatical policy where pastors would get sabbatical every 5 to 7 years. That year was Robert's 5th year, so he took an eight week sabbatical to rest. That added up to 56 days of rest. On the 53rd day, Pastor Robert said he woke up feeling normal again. He told the Lord that he felt normal again. He hadn't felt that way in 5 years since they had started the church. The Lord asked Pastor Robert what day it was. Pastor Robert said that it was the 53rd day out of 56 days. The Lord told him that he had owed one year of Sabbaths (52 days). He asked the Lord if he had owed him 52 days and the Lord told him no, that he had owed himself the 52 days. He told Robert not to go into debt again with his time and his energy!
"Listen!" says Pastor Robert.
"The Lord has given us a day off!
If we don't take it,
it's because we don't trust Him!
That's the only reason we would work 7 days a week!"
Pastor Robert asks us to take a moment and ask the Holy Spirit what He is saying to us through this message.
LESSON 3: THE PRINCIPLE OF HUMILITY
Click to watch Robert Morris' message:
“You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain."
Pastor Robert believes there is a principle behind each of the 10 Commandments that leads us to a deeper relationship with God and with others.
Why would God be so insistent about not using His name the wrong way?
Because His name is His character.
It is who He is!
The name used for God in the Old Testament nearly 7,000 times is Yahweh.
People have asked Pastor Robert the difference in the names Yahweh and Jehovah. They are the same. Yahweh comes from four Hebrew letters.
YHVH- Yod Hey Vav Hey
These are the letters of God's name.
There are no vowels in the Hebrew alphabet, only consonants.
It was around the 13th century before people began to say God's name. Catholic scholars took the four Hebrew letters and added vowels with them. They wrote it
YeHoVaH which meant "He will be," "He is," "He was."
In the Greek, God's name is called the Tetragrammaton which means the four letters.
Israel went into bondage in around 594 BC because they profaned God' name. As a result, the Jewish people stopped pronouncing the name of God around 600 BC because they did not want to take the chance of profaning His name.
What we need to understand according to Pastor Robert is that they were not profaning God's name by saying it out loud, but rather by the way they lived!
They had the name of God on them, but they were worshipping idols.
The people of the land could not tell the difference between the people of God and the people who did not know God!
He warns that one of greatest ways to profane the name of the Lord is when we call ourselves Christlike and yet we don't live like Christ!
Jonathan Cohen is a Messianic Jew. When he texts Pastor Robert, the message will look like this:
May G-d bless you!
Pastor Robert thinks this principle of not writing God's name might be a good idea because we need to be cautious, careful and reverent when we use the name of God! That way, we won't mix His name - the holy with the profane. It is a holy name!
Ezekiel 36 is talking about when the people went into exile.
20 When they came to the nations, wherever they went, they profaned My holy name—when they said of them, ‘These are the people of the Lord, and yet they have gone out of His land.’ 21 But I had concern for My holy name, which the house of Israel had profaned among the nations wherever they went. 22 “Therefore say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “I do not do this for your sake, O house of Israel, but for My holy name’s sake, which you have profaned among the nations wherever you went. 23 And I will sanctify My great name, which has been profaned among the nations, which you have profaned in their midst; and the nations shall know that I am the Lord,” says the Lord God, “when I am hallowed in you before their eyes.
Profane means to treat as common.
We get the word profanity from profane.
In other words, the people treated God's name as common.
His name is not common because it represents Him!
hallowed - means set apart, referred to as holy.
"You shall not take the Lord's name in vain.
take - means to lift up or carry
You shall not carry the Lord's name in a vain, empty, or prideful way.
This is the principle of humility.
All through scripture, we have to know that the name of the Lord is interchangeable for the Lord.
In the scriptures below, you would think they would say the Lord, but instead they say the name of the Lord.
The scripture doesn't say the Lord is a strong tower.
He is, but the name of the Lord means the same.
The name of the Lord is a strong tower;
The righteous run to it and are safe.
Some trust in chariots, and some in horses;
But we will remember the name of the Lord our God.
The prayer of Jesus in John 17 occurs when He is in the garden before He is crucified. He is praying for us. Pastor Robert points out that there are three phrases that we have probably never seen even though we've probably read John 17 many times.
“I have manifested Your name to the men whom You have given Me out of the world. They were Yours, You gave them to Me, and they have kept Your word.
Now I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are.
While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Your name. Those whom You gave Me I have kept; and none of them is lost except the son of perdition, that the Scripture might be fulfilled.
Jesus kept the people and God's character.
For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Whoever calls on the name of the Lord is the same as whoever calls on the Lord!
But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name:
Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name,
This is a very important verse to the Jewish people
because in the Old Testament, it said "the Name."
The God who is, is called by the Name. Every place in the New Testament when it says "the Name" is referring to Jesus.
Pastor Robert explains that what it is saying is you've called on Yahweh meaning the Name of God and now Yahweh is here!
This is because God the Father has given Jesus the name that is above every name!
Pastor Robert tells of a time when he was in college. There was a student who was a charismatic, or a Pentecostal. Pastor Robert said he and his friends thought this guy was a little weird and they all made fun of him. One night, at an all night grocery store though, changed all that. The Pentecostal was at that store getting some groceries when a guy with a gun came in the door and told everyone not to move or he would kill them.
The Pentecostal told the guy with the gun that he was not going to kill anyone
in the name of Jesus
and to put the gun down and go turn himself in at the police station!
The gun did put the gun down
and about 15 minutes later turned himself in at the police station!
Pastor Robert said that he and his friends
did not make fun of the Pentecostal guy after that!
So God says not to carry or take the name of the Lord in a vain way.
Here are 3 ways not to carry the name of the Lord in a vain way, but instead in a humble way!
Pastor Robert says to remember that the people were entering a land filled with heathens, idolatry, and witchcraft.
The way that they called on their idols was to call the name of the idol.
Pastor Robert reminds us that we have to put the 10 Commandments in context.
What the Lord was saying was that His name is not a magical incantation. We don't use His name like they use the name of their idols because His name is who He is!
Even in the New Testament, people used the Lord's name incorrectly.
Then some of the itinerant Jewish exorcists took it upon themselves to call the name of the Lord Jesus over those who had evil spirits, saying, [a]“We [b]exorcise you by the Jesus whom Paul preaches.” 14 Also there were seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, who did so. 15 And the evil spirit answered and said, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are you?” 16 Then the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, [c]overpowered them, and prevailed against [d]them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded. 17 This became known both to all Jews and Greeks dwelling in Ephesus; and fear fell on them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified.
"That will teach us to use the Lord's name wrong!" says Pastor Robert.
He continues by stating that when we use His name the wrong way by praying selfishly, we are using His name in a prideful manner.
You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.
amis - means sick, miserable
This is because what we are asking for would make us sick and miserable if the Lord gave it to us. We don't even know what we are asking.
Pastor Robert continues by saying the right way is to pray for the Lord's will. Then we will know for sure we are praying the right way. We do use His name when we pray.
Until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.
We must pray the way Jesus prayed. We must not pray our will, but the Lord's will be done.
Pastor Robert tells of time when he and his wife Debbie were praying about a house to buy. Pastor Robert was really praying for the Lord to give them a particular house. Their kids were small. Pastor Robert remembers having a prompting to pray "if it is Your will." He said he didn't want to say that though because he didn't want to give the Lord an out.
The Lord told Robert that He hadn't saved his finances. He had saved his family! The water had risen three feet in 20 minutes. How would his wife been able to get their three small children out of the house in time! So Pastor Robert reminds us that when we pray, we use His name, but for His will not for our vain purposes!
“I have heard what the prophets have said who prophesy lies in My name, saying, ‘I have dreamed, I have dreamed!’
Her prophets plastered them with untempered mortar,seeing false visions, and divining lies for them, saying, ‘Thus says the Lord God,’ when the Lord had not spoken.
Pastor Robert says we have seen this in the church today. We have people sharing their opinions and saying thus says the Lord. They are taking the Lord's name in vain.
We need to know the second part of the commandment.
“You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.
guiltless - means unpunished
The Lord will not let him go unpunished.
13 Then I said, “Ah, Lord God! Behold, the prophets say to them, ‘You shall not see the sword, nor shall you have famine, but I will give you [a]assured peace in this place.’ ” 14 And the Lord said to me, “The prophets prophesy lies in My name. I have not sent them, commanded them, nor spoken to them; they prophesy to you a false vision, [b]divination, a worthless thing, and the deceit of their heart. 15 Therefore thus says the Lord concerning the prophets who prophesy in My name, whom I did not send, and who say, ‘Sword and famine shall not be in this land’—‘By sword and famine those prophets shall be consumed!
In the above scripture, the Lord was telling Jeremiah that sword and famine was coming, but Jeremiah disagreed because of what the prophets had been saying.
vain - means worthless
In other words, the Lord said the very thing the prophets said was not coming would come upon them.
Pastor Robert is not trying to scare us but in our society, we have so unvalued the name of the Lord.
We must remember how holy and reverent it is and that it is Him that we are taking about when we use His name.
We are calling into question His character.
Pastor Robert tells a story of a time when he was speaking at another church. The pastor there told him about a man in his congregation that had gotten mad at him and stood up in church and prophesied that God was going to kill him! That week, the man who had prophesied against the preacher died! Pastor Robert remarked that he was not saying that God had killed that man because he spoke against the pastor, but the man had used the name of the Lord in a vain way.
Pastor Robert reminds us that there is a commandment the Lord will not let him go unpunished for using the name of the Lord to achieve his own agenda in the church. We ought to be careful.
Profaning is speaking the name of the Lord in a wrong manner. We can pray, prophesize, and proclaim the name of the Lord in the wrong way.
12 And you shall not swear by My name falsely, nor shall you profane the name of your God: I am the Lord.
6 They shall be holy to their God and not profane the name of their God, for they offer the offerings of the Lordmade by fire, and the bread of their God; therefore they shall be holy.
Remember, Jewish people won't even speak the Lord's name out loud and we use "omg" like "lol."
Pastor Robert warns that we need to think about this!
We can proclaim the Lord's name in the right way.
Enter into His gates with thanksgiving,
And into His courts with praise.
Be thankful to Him, and bless His name.
The best way to proclaim the name of the Lord is with praise and gratitude!
In reflecting on the second part of the commandment about the Lord not letting him go unpunished who has profaned His name, Pastor Robert began to think that he, himself, was in serious trouble. He said that he had probably prayed the Lord's name in the wrong way, said somethings that he thought the Lord had said to him that He had probably not said, and had proclaimed the Lord's name wrong even it had been by using the expression omg.
He had considered the Lord's name common. So what would that mean? Would Pastor Robert go unpunished?
Pastor Robert wants us to realize that the 10 Commandments were given by grace!
He continues by explaining that this shocks so many people because they talk about the Mosaic covenant.
Pastor Robert reminds us though, that before the Lord made the Mosaic covenant, He made the Abrahamic covenant - that Abraham believed God and it was counted to him as righteous. Righteousness was put into his account!
"Why did God give us the 10 Commandments?" asks Pastor Robert.
Because it's about grace according to Pastor Robert.
He states that he wants to show us grace even in the 10 Commandments. He says that God did not give the 10 Commandments to Israel while they were in Egypt. In other words, God didn't tell the Israelites to straighten up and act right and then He would deliver them from their enemies by burying them in the Red Sea.
Instead the Lord saved them by grace and then gave them some principles to help them have a better relationship with Him! That's the 10 Commandments given all by grace!
It's grace through faith because when Israel walked through the Red Sea, they had to believe that the walls would not crash down on them!
In review, Pastor Robert states:
1. The 10 Commandments are not to tell us to straighten up and live right.
2. Jesus took our punishment.
3. Keeping the 10 Commandments will give us a deeper relationship with God and other people.
Pastor Robert challenges us to ask the Holy Spirit what He is saying to us through this message.
He says he personally felt like he needed to ask the Lord to forgive him for considering His name common and not using His name like he ought to.
Pastor Robert encourages us to ask the Lord for forgiveness too, if we feel like we need to. He reminds us that Christ has already provided forgiveness through the cross.
We receive it by faith.
LESSON 2: THE PRINCIPLE OF PURITY
Click to watch Robert Morris' message:
Pastor Robert also reminds us that the Children of Israel were leaving a pagan land, Egypt, and were entering a pagan country, Canaan. Canaan was a land of many idols.
They even sacrificed their sons
And their daughters to demons,
According to Pastor Robert, Deuteronomy 18:9-11 sets up the second commandment.
Avoid Wicked Customs
9 “When you come into the land which the Lord your God is giving you, you shall not learn to follow the [a]abominations of those nations. 10 There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass[b] through the fire, or one who practices witchcraft, or a soothsayer, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, 11 or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead.
For Moses truly said to the fathers, ‘The Lord your God will raise up for you a Prophet like me from your brethren. Him you shall hear in all things, whatever He says to you.
The Canaanites made their children walk into the fire alive.
has not appointed: God has not prepared this things for His children
Prophet: talking about Jesus
Him: talking about Jesus
1. The Danger of Impurity
The 2nd Commandment is written in three verses. Pastor Robert uses one of each verse for his three points in this message.
“You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that isin the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth;
Pastor Robert points out that the Canaanites worshipped idols more than any other people on the face of the earth.
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.
Colossians 1:15 is referring to Jesus.
Israel was the only nation that had an invisible God. So when they went to Canaan, the Canaanites began to talk to them about their gods.
The Canaanites had
a personal god,
a family god,
and a national god.
The Canaanites tricked the Israelites by telling them that they understood the Israelites had a national God, Jehovah, but that they needed a family god (Asherah) and a personal god (Baal). That is why throughout the Old Testament, you will see the Israelites built Asherah poles and Baal idols. God warned them that when they went into Canaan, the Canaanites would try to deceive them and they did.
So the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord. They forgot the Lord their God, and served the Baals and Asherahs.
Elijah is talking in 1 Kings 18:19 below:
Now therefore, send and gather all Israel to me on Mount Carmel, the four hundred and fifty prophets of Baal, and the four hundred prophets of Asherah, who eat at Jezebel’s table.”
1 Kings 18:19
Pastor Robert challenges us to think about this:
The Canaanites believed that the gods lived in heaven and when they carved an image of any of one of these gods in heaven, the god would put its spirit into the image. The Canaanites would then take the image, for instance to the field to bless their crops. They would make an image of their fertility god and put it in their bedroom so they would conceive. They even went as far as to have temple prostitutes. If they couldn't conceive, then the men would pay for a temple prostitute, have sex with her, and think the goddess of fertility would bless their wives. It was both immoral and inhumane as then they would sacrifice their children by making them walk into fire alive.
God was trying to warn them that if they allowed a mixture into their lives, it would bring impurity into their lives. As a result there is danger and consequences of such a mixture.
Satan had this idea because God fashioned an image of Himself on the earth and put His spirit in it.
That is why there doesn't need to be another image of God on the earth. We are the image of God on the earth! God puts His spirit in us!
If you imagine yourself with another person sexually other than your spouse.
If you image yourself in another job or in another house because you can't be content with what you have.
If you can't be happy until you get a raise, or promotion, or title, or position, or a certain amount of money in the bank.
When you begin to imagine yourself doing something or having something other than what God has provided for you, then you have an idol.
2. Consequences of Impurity
Point two is based on the second verse of the 2nd Commandment.
you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me
The word visiting is misunderstood in Exodus 20:5.
Pastor Robert says that you can not image how this verse has been misapplied in the body of Christ.
He points out that in Exodus 20:5, this happens to people who hate God. The next part of the scripture tells what God does for those people who love Him.
Pastor Robert wants people to understand the grace of God in the Old Testament. He states that visit is a great word because God does not say that He is going to cause the iniquities to inhabit the next generation. God will only let them visit the iniquities and for a good reason.
Why would God even allow this visiting to occur?
The answer is that God is a jealous God for our affection so He will do something to get our affections.
Jealousy is a work of the flesh but can be good or bad. The bad type of jealousy is when you are jealous for another person because of selfish reason. Good jealousy is when you jealous for another person for godly reasons, because you love that person and don't want anything to happen to them.
Pastor Robert points it says in the Old Testament that God is jealous for Israel. He however, is not angry at Israel. He's angry at the ones trying to take them captive.
Again, why would the Lord visit the iniquity?
Even in Israel, they misinterpreted this commandment.
They stated that a son shall die for the sins of his father.
It is like our modern day saying - Like father, like son."
“If, however, he begets a son
Who sees all the sins which his father has done,
And considers but does not do likewise;
Who has withdrawn his hand from the poor
And not received usury or increase,
But has executed My judgments
And walked in My statutes--
He shall not die for the iniquity of his father;
He shall surely live!
3. Blessings of Purity
but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
Deuteronomy 7:9 backs up Exodus 20:6.
Exodus is the law.
Deuteronomy is the second law, the repeated law.
“Therefore know that the Lord your God, He is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and mercy for a thousand generations with those who love Him and keep His commandments;
The word showing is a Hebrew word translated in several words. Some of them include, fashion, accomplish, prepare, appoint, ordain, institute, bring about, produce, press, and squeeze.
Pastor Robert shares about a time his daughter walked away from God for a while.
Elaine lived a double life late in her teenage years for about two years with wrong attitudes and wrong actions.
He and his wife knew something was wrong but didn't know what all was going on. They continued to pray and seek God for wisdom. She repented and came back to the Lord and truly got saved at 19 years old.
One night she confessed to her parents what had been going on. Pastor Robert had grabbed a couple of Tootsie Rolls before their conversation. He ended up only eating one of the pieces of candy because his heart began to break for his daughter. Later he started to throw the second piece of candy away but He heard the Lord say to keep it. Pastor Robert said some of the reasons she rebelled was because he was traveling a lot during that time and wasn't home as much as he needed to be during those formable teenage years. He asked Elaine if there was a way he could make it up to her. She remembered when she was very young and he had promised to take her on a date at Reunion Tower when she was older. He had never done that, so she asked if they could go now. Pastor Robert took her on that date. As he was getting ready to go to dinner with her, the Lord told him to take that piece of candy that he had saved and to share it with her as a way of closing chapter in their lives when she walked away from the Lord and embarking on her new future walking in a pure relationship with the Lord.
Pastor Robert asks us all to take a moment and ask the Holy Spirit what He is saying to us personally.
He urges us not to have imaginations about things in our lives. He says not to build up those things up in our minds that are something for us to fall to, or to claim as our weakness.
Pastor Robert said that during this message, the Lord put His finger on two areas in his life that the Lord wanted to get out of his life.
What idol will the Holy Spirit reveal that He wants to deliver us from?
This message is very strong in Pastor Robert's heart. He believes that God is going to deliver everyone from something.
LESSON 1: THE PRINCIPLE OF PRIORITY
Click to watch Robert Morris' message:
Did you notice the #10 in the spelling of this study?
28 So he was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights; he neither ate bread nor drank water. And He wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant,
the Ten Commandments.
As Pastor Robert delved into this study , he began to see the Ten Commandments differently than he had ever heard anyone preach or teach on them. He said he got books and videos to study, but none of them fit the burden he felt that the Lord had given him for this study of the Ten Commandments.
As a result, Pastor Robert does not believe that God was giving us
a list of rules
- of do's and don'ts.
Pastor Robert has a one word principle for all Ten Commandments.
The first Commandment word is priority.
Pastor Robert has 3 points in the message. He says the first point will help us understand the whole series, while his other two will focus on priority.
1. It's about relationship.
When the Lord first told the Children of Israel about the Ten Commandments, He actually reminded them that He was their God and that He had a relationship with them! Then in verse 3, He gave them the first commandment.
The Ten Commandments
1 And God spoke all these words, saying:
2 “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt,
out of the house of bondage.
3 “You shall have no other gods before Me.
In the above scripture, before the Lord gave the Ten Commandments, He reminded the Children of Israel that He brought them back. He redeemed them out of bondage and slavery so that they could have a relationship with Him.
6 knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him,that the body of sin might be [a]done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin.
Pastor Robert explains that we were all slaves of sin and God redeemed us out of slavery and bondage to sin. When we look back at the Ten Commandments, here's what we see:
The Ten principles that will deepen our relationship with God.
Pastor Robert says most people see the Ten Commandments as a list of rules telling them what to do and what not to do. But it is not something to do and something not to do.
God redeemed us for a relationship with Him!
Exodus 20:3-17 are the Ten Commandments.
Exodus 20:18-22 tells what happened immediately after the Ten Commandments were given.
The People Afraid of God’s Presence
18 Now all the people witnessed the thunderings, the lightning flashes, the sound of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking; and when the people saw it, they trembled and stood afar off. 19 Then they said to Moses, “You speak with us, and we will hear; but let not God speak with us, lest we die.” 20 And Moses said to the people, “Do not fear; for God has come to test you, and that His fear may be before you, so that you may not sin.” 21 So the people stood afar off, but Moses drew near the thick darkness where God was.
test you: means to prove you in fire - make you better
His fear: means God's honor may go before you so you won't sin
God is giving us some principles to help us get us out of the bondage of sin that we are in.
The choice is ours like it was Moses' and the Children of Israel.
In Exodus 20:21, Moses drew near to God. He determined that He wanted to have a deeper relationship with God!
The Children of Israel determined that they wanted to have a relationship with God through Moses. They told Moses to speak to God and then come and tell them what He said.
Why would we do that?
The reason is lest we die.
According to Pastor Robert, what that means is the flesh always dies in the presence of God. He explains that we do die when we go into the presence of God, but that is great because then Jesus can live through us!
He says the more we enter into God's presence, the more we can reckon the man dead and the new man can be raised to walk a new life in Christ Jesus.
The Peoples' Determination
The Children of Israel wanted Moses to have a personal relationship with God
and they wanted their relationship with God to be through Moses.
The next verse sums up their decision.
He made known His ways to Moses,
His acts to the children of Israel.
Do you see the difference?
According to the verse, the Children of Israel knew what God did,
but Moses knew why He did it!
Moses understood the ways of God. He didn't just see the acts of God.
Pastor Robert asks us if we want to have a relationship with God based on rules
(thou shalt not....)
do we want to have a relationship based on principles that allow us to go deeper with God in order to get to know Him better?
2. Worship God only.
3 “You shall have no other gods before Me.
In the above verse, God is not saying that we can have other gods as long as they are not in front of Him!
The word before in Hebrew is used in the Old Testament over 1,000 times. It is only translated to actually mean before a few times.
Other translations of before are:
You shall have no other gods besides Me,
in front of Me,
because of Me,
in My face,
inside of Me,
other than Me
Pastor Robert explains that we have to take every scripture and have it be congruent with the rest of scripture.
Isaiah 45:5 does just that with Exodus 20:3.
I am the Lord, and there is no other;
There is no God besides Me.
Since the Children of Israel had just come out of a culture that had more gods than any other culture,
the Lord wanted to make it clear to them that they shall have NO other gods at all!
When you have other gods in your life, it will not work!
One day during his quiet time, the Lord asked him to write down his priorities. He wrote
The Lord said to him that He did not tell Robert to write that.
Robert argued and told the Lord he knew what He was going to say because he knew about this and taught about it. It should be
The Lord said no. So Pastor Robert tore up the paper and listened to God.
The Lord told him that 1. should be his wife Debbie.
Pastor Robert said what the Lord told him next changed his life. The Lord told him that if he would put his wife first, then he would be putting the Lord first. He told Robert if he couldn't serve his wife, the he couldn't serve Him!
3. Another way to say the Principle of Priority is to put God first.
God is saying to put Him first place in our lives above everything else.
So what is really first place in our lives?
This Principle of Priority runs all through scripture.
When they went into the Promised Land, God told them to bring all the silver and the gold from Jericho into the House of God.
Because Jericho was the first city.
When your first born has offspring, sacrifice it to God.
The first born belongs to God. It's the Principle of First.
Pastor Robert reminds us that God didn't say when your sheep have lambs, you can wait until you have 10 lambs and then give him the one you don't like. The one that gets into your garden. No, the Lord says to give Him the first lamb before you have the others.
The principle with God is the first born and the first fruits belong to Him.
Many people don't understand and why God accepted Abel's offering but it clear in Genesis 4:3-5.
3 And in the process of time it came to pass that Cain brought an offering of the fruit of the ground to the Lord. 4 Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat. And the Lord respected Abel and his offering, 5 but He did not respect Cain and his offering. And Cain was very angry, and his countenance fell.
In the above scripture, the words "in the process of time" and "came to pass" are very important.
Cain's offering just kind of happened. The scripture never said Cain offered first fruits.
The Lord respected (received) Abel and his offering because Abel put Him first.
Pastor Robert reminds us that the Lord says it only works when we put Him first.
Jesus comes and reiterates the same thing.
33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.
Put God first.
In 1 Kings 17, there was a famine in the land. God was providing for Elijah beside a brook. He sent ravens to bring him food every morning and evening. When the brook dried up, the Lord told Elijah to go to Zarehath where a widow would provide for him.
10 So he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, indeed a widow was there gathering sticks. And he called to her and said, “Please bring me a little water in a cup, that I may drink.” 11 And as she was going to get it, he called to her and said, “Please bring me a morsel of bread in your hand.” 12 So she said, “As the Lord your God lives, I do not have bread, only a handful of flour in a bin, and a little oil in a jar; and see, I am gathering a couple of sticks that I may go in and prepare it for myself and my son, that we may eat it, and die.” 13 And Elijah said to her, “Do not fear; go and do as you have said, but make me a small cake from it first, and bring it to me; and afterward make some for yourself and your son. 14 For thus says the Lord God of Israel: ‘The bin of flour shall not be used up, nor shall the jar of oil run dry, until the day the Lord sends rain on the earth.’ ” 15 So she went away and did according to the word of Elijah; and she and he and her household ate for manydays. 16 The bin of flour was not used up, nor did the jar of oil run dry, according to the word of the Lord which He spoke by Elijah.
1 Kings 17:10-16
In verse 13, Elijah tells the widow to make him a small cake first.
(We must put God's kingdom first in our lives!)
Pastor Robert says that many people believe that God has dual purposes for His children. While He commanded the widow to provide for Elijah, He also sent Elijah to Zarephath to provide for the widow! The widow had one meal left and she and her son were about to die, yet God sent Elijah, a man of God. Elijah to told her to make a cake first for him and then for she and her son.
Gateway Church has a Stewardship Ministry. The purpose of the ministry is to help people learn to manage their finances. Pastor Robert said that they also have a giving program called Heart for the Kingdom. The purpose is not about raising money but for allowing the Lord to do something in participates' lives. Pastor Robert asks everyone at Gateway Church to make a financial commitment for the Heart for the Kingdom.