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Bible Study Notes 1/9/2024

Word Alive! Bible Study ©2024

Winter Series: God Never Gives Up On You!

Concord Baptist Church of Boston in Milton

Conley Hughes, Jr., Senior Pastor

Tues., 9 Jan. Lesson 7, Parts 1 & 2

 

Max Lucado, God Never Gives Up On You © 2024

Quiet Time: Max Lucado, God Never Gives Up, Pages 77-88


Finding God In Chaos - We should be encouraged to know, that some of the chaos we encounter in life, is God’s way of causing us to trust Him more. We don’t need to look very far in the Scripture to learn this. One incident that comes to mind is the Prophet Elijah, who amid the strong winds, earthquake, and fire; came to hear the “distinct voice of the Lord.” Under great stress and overwhelming anxiety over the sins and apostacy of the nation, Elijah fled to a cave, in the Sinai mountainous region. The chaos swirling around Elijah, along with his inner stress, eclipsed his view of God. He must have thought, ‘Where is God, in the midst of this chaos?’ After reciting a litany of the problems he faced, Elijah had concluded, “He alone,” was left to challenge a decadent people. (Read, 1 Kings 19:10-13, NLT). Elijah learned as we all can; God is never far removed from the predicaments we face in life. God appears in many ways, but the voice spoken becomes clearer and reassuring, the more we place our trust in Him. God told Elijah, return to the place where his call to prophetic ministry had occurred. Elijah was re-commissioned for more service. The prophet was told that despite his belief that he alone remained faithful to God; some 7,000 people would serve God unflinchingly; while Elijah would be protected, and given a successor in Elisha, to continue the work. (Read, 1 Kgs. 19:14b; 15-16; 18, NLT). No person likes to feel they have been taken advantage of by others; or, the actions of others, have contributed to the whirling tempests in which they find themselves. It is in such times a person should listen to hear the assuring voice of God. In his book, God Never Gives Up On You, Max Lucado looks at how Jacob felt when he realized that his uncle/father-in-law, Laban, had been deceitful with him. A series of insincere promises, and conniving actions by Laban, contributed to anxiety, and fueled his anger. In the midst of Jacob’s trials, God was present. The Lord assured Jacob in a dream He was with him. He directed Jacob to gather his family, and return home to the land of Canaan. (Read, Genesis 31:12b-13, NIV). The remaining six years that Jacob worked for Laban were unpleasant; yet, during those years, God increased Jacob’s family; added significantly to his household, and gained wealth through the increase of his livestock. Despite Jacob’s successes, Laban orchestrated schemes to set him back. Regardless of the chaos, the ever-present God had a plan to restore Jacob’s losses despite Laban’s deceptions. Max Lucado comments: “God rewarded Jacob’s faith! God used Laban to teach Jacob to trust God. Jacob didn’t like Laban. He wanted to leave Laban, yet he was better because of Laban.” God can bless us, amid the chaos others bring into our lives. King David said, God allowed him “to eat before his enemies.” (Psalm 23:5a).


Key Idea:

What We Believe!

  1. “God’s grace never quits.” – Max Lucado


Key Verses:

1 Kings 19:10-13, NLT

“Elijah replied, I have zealously served the Lord God Almighty. But the people of Israel have broken their covenant with you, torn down your altars, and killed everyone of your prophets. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me, too.  “Go out and stand before me on the mountain,” the Lord told him. And as Elijah stood there the Lord passed by, and a mighty windstorm hit the mountain. It was such a terrible blast that the rocks were torn loose, but the Lord was not in the wind.  After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake.  And after the earthquake there was a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire.  And after the fire, there was the sound of a gentle whisper. When Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face and his cloak and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. And a voice said, “What are you doing here Elijah?”


1 Kings 19:14b;15-16; 18, NLT

“I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me too.” Then the Lord told him, “Go back the same way you came, and travel to the wilderness of Damascus. When you arrive there anoint Hazael to be king of Aram. Then anoint Jehu grandson of Nimish to be king of Israel, and anoint Elisha son of Shaphat from the town of Abelmeholah to replace you as prophet…Yet I will preserve 7,000 others in Israel who have never bowed down to Baal or kissed him.”


Genesis 31:12b-13, NIV

“…For I have seen all that Laban has been doing to you. I am the God of Bethel, where you anointed a pillar and where you made a vow to me. Now leave this land at once and go back to your native land.”

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