Word Alive! Bible Study ©2023
End of Summer/Early Fall Series:
Dare to Dream and Grow Your Faith!
Concord Baptist Church of Boston in Milton
Conley Hughes, Jr., Senior Pastor
Tues., 26 Sept. / 3 Oct. 2023 Lesson 7, Parts 1 & 2
Rick Warren, Created to Dream, © 2023
Quiet Time: Rick Warren, “Dream,” 103-115
Deliverance Will Happen – There are no delays, dead-ends, or any other obstacles that can prevent God from fulfilling His promises to us. When we dare to dream, we are putting our faith in motion, to direct our attention to the continuing purpose for which God has placed us into His family. God does not renege on His promises. Often, we feel defeated or overlooked because we fail to receive the things we desire when we want them. Sometimes, our plans are counter to God’s plan for us; or, we are focusing more on our sense of urgency; than we are, yielding to God’s timing. This is why God says: “Just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways, and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:9, NLT). As we survey different past moments in our lives, we will discover that God permitted delays, detours, and dead-end, which caused us to realize our absolute need for His presence, guidance, and counsel. There is no shame in having gone through the rough patches in our journey; because each has brough us closer to God, and more in alignment with His great plan for us. God has called us to live holy, which means to “be set apart” for God. It is more about our character, than about our clothing; or any other external factors. The Apostle Paul prayed that God would bring the entirety of ourselves in alignment with His will. God is faithful, and will fulfill His promises in our lives (Read, I Thessalonians 5:23-24, NLT). We also know from Scripture that God is a Deliverer. Regardless of what we encounter, God will never permit us to go beyond His reach. While we are challenged by principalities, powers, and wickedness in high places, we remain protected. In his book, Created To Dream, author/pastor Rick Warren says: “No matter how dark your situation is, your Deliverer is coming – and he just might show up in a way you’ve never seen before.” Because we’re protected, God’s promises for us are also secured. The early Christians were assured they would be guarded against harm. (Read, 2 Thessalonians 3:3, NLT). Jesus also gave us the authority to pray for protection against the evil one: “And don’t let us yield to temptation, but rescue us from the evil one.” (See, Matthew 6:13, NLT). Peter was bold enough to ask permission, to join Jesus out on the choppy waters of the sea. He did well, until he became distracted by the wind and heightened waves. Peter’s fatal experience was reason for him to scream out to Jesus, to save him. Jesus delivered Peter from near death; but scolded him on his marginal faith. (Read, Matthew 14:29-33, NLT). It’s difficult to live our purposes, when our faith is not aligned properly. The Hebrew young men who refused to comply with the King’s edict, held to their convictions and never saw harm. (Read, Dan. 3:16-18;25, NLT).
Deliverance Will Happen, Part 2 – Often it isn’t that we don’t trust God with our dreams; the problem is we don’t allow ourselves to trust the promises of God. We must be sure not to waver in our confidence in the assurances God has given us. (Read, Hebrews 10:23-24, NLT). As the family of God, we are expected also, to encourage and motivate each other. A biblical word often used in the Scriptures, is the Hebrew term natsal, which means “to draw out.” In the English translation of the Scriptures, the word means, “deliverance.” The term gives us the sense that God will inevitably “draw us away from” the conditions and circumstances that harms us; and attempt to prevent His purposes. men who needed healing. Jesus asked them if they wanted to be healed. This is why Paul admonished the Christians in Philippi to avoid unnecessary worry and stress. They were told to take everything to God, in the full assurance that they would experience God’s peace. (Read, Philippians 4:6-7, NLT). We should never feel that it’s useless taking some things to God. Even when we pray for things, we’re uncertain about, we come to realize that we need to recalibrate our prayer life. We come to learn that we must pray in alignment with God’s will for us. The Apostle John says: “And we are confident that He hears us whenever we ask for anything that pleases Him. And since we know He hears us when we make our requests, we also know that He will give us what we ask for.” (See, I John 5:14-15, NLT). Our confidence comes through our fellowship with the Lord, as we open ourselves to Him. Pastor Rick Warren suggests there are three types of Deliverance: eternal, internal, and eternal.
External Deliverance – is when God alters your situations. Changes are brough about through God’s timing; and according to His plans. The Scriptures speak of miraculous happenings by God’s design. God working outside of us is external deliverance!
Internal Deliverance – is when circumstances are changed, because God changes us. God is at work in us, to transform us, such that we will have new attitudes; a new outlook on life; new dreams and priorities. Paul’s great prayer was for our internal deliverance. (Read, Ephesians 3:16-19, NLT).
Eternal Deliverance – is what every Christian should anticipate. This is life after mortality; where God removes all pain and problems. He blesses us with eternal peace and rest.
John assures us, as Christians we have already “won a victory” over the immediate opposition of this world. The work of evil forces, are pale in comparison to the Holy Spirit who resides in us. Beyond a dead-end place confronting us, there is deliverance. The Spirit of God destroys all strongholds and helps us attain our dreams. You can dare to dream, and build your faith each day (Read, I John 4:1:4, NLT).
What We Believe!
1. “What [God] calls you to do, He will enable you to do.” – Rick Warren
I Thessalonians 5:23-24, NLT “Now may the God of peace make you holy in every way, and may your whole spirit and body and soul be kept blameless unless our Jesus comes again. God will make this happen, He who calls you is faithful.”
2 Thessalonians 3:3, NLT “But the Lord is faithful; He will strengthen you and guard you from the evil one.”
I Corinthians 1:9, NLT “God will do this, for He is faithful to do what He says, and He has invited you into partnership with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Matthew 14:29-33, NLT “Yes come,” Jesus said. So Peter went over the side of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus. But when he saw the strong wind and the waves, he was terrified and began to sink. “Save me Lord!” he shouted. Jesus immediately reached out and grabbed him. “You have so little faith,” Jesus said. “Why did you doubt me?” When they climbed back into the boat, the winds stopped. Then the disciples worshiped Him. “You really are the Son of God!” they exclaimed.”
Daniel 3:16-18; 25, NLT
“Shadrack, Meshack, and Abednego replied, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you. If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God whom we serve is able to save us. He will rescue us from your power, Your Majesty. But even if He doesn’t, we want to make it clear to you, Your Majesty, that we will never serve your gods or worship the gold statue you have set up.” Look! I see four men unbound, walking around in the fire unharmed…”
Hebrews 10:23-24, NLT
“Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep His promise. Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.”
Philippians 4:6-7, NLT
“Don’t worry about anything. Instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank Him for all He has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”
Ephesians 3:16-19, NLT
“I pray that from His glorious, unlimited, resources He will empower you with inner strength through His Spirit. Then Christ will make His home in your hearts as you trust in Him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep His love is.” May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fulness of life and power that comes from God.”
I John 4:1;4, NLT
“Dear friends, do not believe everyone who claims to speak by the Spirit. You must test them to see if the spirit they have comes from God. For there are many false prophets in the world… But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit…in the world.”