Living It Out – Daily Bible Study 10.18.11

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Series: Refining Faith
This Week: Courage Under Fire

TUESDAY —Level 1: Selfish-Christian (… they do exist)
Big Point: Living selfishly is a direct reflection of the sin in our lives.

Selfishness can be defined as an excessive or exclusive concern with oneself.
Christianity can be defined as being concerned for others. Selfishness and Christianity do not mix! Read the following story. In what ways is Sean Hill selfish?

SELFISH WITH THE GOSPEL by Alfred Benjamin King
     Once upon a time in a land far, far away, there lived a man named Sean Hill. He was a intelligent man and he knew the ways of Christianity in a land where no one else cared. The people of the land were deeply rooted in sin. Sean didn’t bother to preach the gospel to them.
     He was satisfied that his family members were Christians; their salvation was secure. Unfortunately for Sean wherever the gospel is not preached evil thrives. The Devil and his demons had a field day because there was no one and nothing standing in their way. The people of the land knew that Sean and his family lived their lives differently from everyone else but since Sean never bothered to share the gospel with them, they never even had the chance to understand why they lived their lives differently. People tend to like people who are like themselves.
     One day the animosity towards Sean’s family grew so strong that a mob was formed and they took Sean and his family away from their home and brought them to the public square where lies where cooked up against them in front of the judge. After all the lies had been presented, the judge ordered Sean and his family to be executed. THE END

READ…What does the Bible say?
Philippians 2:3-4 (New Living Translation)
Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.

James 4:4-5 (New Living Translation)
You adulterers! Don’t you realize that friendship with the world makes you an enemy of God? I say it again: If you want to be a friend of the world, you make yourself an enemy of God. What do you think the Scriptures mean when they say that the spirit God has placed within us is filled with envy?

Almost every sinful action
ever committed can be traced
back to a selfish motive. It is
a trait we hate in other people
but justify in ourselves.”
Steven Kendrick, author of
The Love Dare

THINK…Find the answers
In Philippians 2:3-4, there are three “don’ts” listed. What are they and what impact do they have on a Christ-followers ability to live out a courageous faith?

What are we to do according to Philippians 2:3-4?

The James passage makes you choose – friendship with the world or God. If you choose friendship with the world, what does that make you to God?

LIVE…What will you do now?
Today’s study is titled, “Selfish Christian.” No one wants to admit that he or she is a selfish Christian. However, this category of believers is more common than what we think. One characteristic of this category is the mindset: “What’s in it for me?” What are selfish Christians looking for? What are they trying to avoid?

Reflect on today’s opening story. Do you think things would have ended differently in the story “Selfish with the Gospel” if Sean Hill and his family preached the gospel instead of selfishly keeping it to themselves? What could have happened if they would have been courageous enough to share with their community?

Have you shared your faith with anyone this week? What about in the last six months? What is so risky—or so terrifying—about sharing your faith?

PRAY…God, What do you want me to know & do?
Ask God to help you become unselfish when it comes to sharing the Gospel and serving others. Also ask Him where He can use you this week.

DAILY BIBLE READING COMMENTARY: Deuteronomy 32-34
32:4 “Rock” … The Hebrew term depicts God as a rocky summit where one may find safety and protection.
32:8 “…according to the heavenly assembly.” Original is “sons of God” Masoretic text (Hebrew text of Old Testament) … assume this refers to Israel and the LXX (Greek Old Testament) interpret it as heavenly beings, i.e. angels. As a result, there are various translations of the phrase in different Bible versions.
32:11 “Eagle stirs up nest and hovers over young.” When her fledglings are old enough to fly, but linger in the nest, she breaks up the nest to scatter them and allure them to follow her example. The Hebrew verbal form indicates a habitual or typical behavior. As the eagle fledglings enter untried air protected by the mother eagle beneath, so God will be beneath us as we step in faith into unknown territory.
32:21 “jealous” … The jealousy of God is not the spirit of pettiness prompted by insecurity we associate with the term, but rather a righteous indignation caused by disloyalty of His people to His covenant grace.
32:21 “false gods” … The Hebrews suggested the false gods are empty or futile. Solomon used the same word in Ecclesiastes: “futile, futile, everything is futile.” Chapter 33, Moses gives Israel blessings and goes tribe by tribe; very similar to Jacob (Israel) in Genesis chapter 49.
34:5-6 Moses dies and he is buried, but nobody knows for

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