“So don’t be afraid, little flock. For it gives your Father great happiness to give you the Kingdom.” Luke 12:32
“Little flock” refers to believers who belong to God’s kingdom and live under God’s loving care (vv. 22–31). This image recalls the Old Testament's depiction of God as a caring shepherd of His people (e.g., Psa 77:20; Jer 13:17; Mic 4:8).
Elsewhere the NT presents Jesus as the fulfillment of the OT’S promise of a true shepherd of God’s people (see Matt 9:36; Mark 6:34; John 10:11–18; compare Isa 40:11; Ezek 34:11–31, 34:23 and note). (Barry, J. D., Mangum, D., Brown, D. R., Heiser, M. S., Custis, M., Ritzema, E., … Bomar, D. (2012, 2016). Faithlife Study Bible (Lk 12:32). Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.)
The true disciple is not afraid because of a sincere trust in God. The true disciple doesn’t draw their security from things, or people, or places but from God. This makes you...
“If you love me, obey my commandments.”
When he makes this statement, it was a big evening for Jesus. It’s his formal farewell to his disciples, his friends. And his friends are freaking out! They are scared. How does Jesus decide to comfort them? He promises the Holy Spirit - the great comforter. The one who would guide, teach, encourage, empower, and mediate on behalf of the believer. Ultimately he was giving them the comforting presence of himself - Jesus.
The provision of Jesus that will bring about this relationship is declared to be the indwelling Spirit (vv. 15–17)
Holy Spirit has two new names:
Paraclete (Gk. parakletos) is unique to John (elsewhere 14:26; 15:26; 16:7; 1 John 2:1) and expresses the Spirit’s strengthening, equipping role.
A parakletos was a judicial advocate (cf. Matt. 10:16–20) and here Jesus says that Christians alone can enjoy his aid...
'Jesus said to the people who believed in him, “You are truly my disciples if you remain faithful to my teachings. And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”' John 8:31-32
The NT stresses the need for believers to remain in Christ. The reality of this close personal relationship with Jesus Christ is expressed in obedience to his word and is essential to effective discipleship.
How do you abide in Jesus?
But this is not accomplished without
How does this help your relationship?
(Part 1 - the critical importance of intimacy with Jesus)
“The next day Jesus decided to go to Galilee. He found Philip and said to him, ‘Come, follow me.’” John 1:43
Our theme so far has been to not just believe, but obey. To respond and don’t waste time doing what Jesus desires most. That is where we find freedom.
Today is about the cost of following Jesus
Your family (Matthew 10:37-38)
Your own life (Luke 14:26-27)
Your pride (Mark 8:34)
In essence, it will cost you anything you value more than Jesus.
We must accept and follow Jesus’ leadership, command and guidance.
How does this help your relationship?
When Jesus is #1, you can’t help but react to that person who matters most to you in a fruit of the spirit! “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!” Galatians 5:22-23
“Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the...
'From then on Jesus began to preach, “Repent of your sins and turn to God, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near.”' Matthew 4:17
'Have mercy on me, O God, because of your unfailing love. Because of your great...
"Jesus replied,“All who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with each of them.” John 14:23
Great relationships have grit: Passion and Perseverance
GRIT: firmness of character; indomitable spirit; pluck (dictionary.com)
An intense desire or enthusiasm for something. strong and barely controllable emotion. A thing arousing enthusiasm. The suffering and death of Jesus.
steadfastness in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success. Other words for perseverance: persistence, tenacity, determination, staying power, steadfastness, purposefulness…
What does this mean for your relationship? Everything!
Tim and Nancy's story should inspire anyone about what it takes to stay committed to each other through "sickness and in health"!
Since 1979 I have lived with the consequences of a brain-based mental health challenge called bipolar disorder. Through these years I have experienced episodes of extreme mania, protracted periods of dark depression, as well as eruptions of psychosis.
Dr. Kay Redfield Jamison, a leading authority and herself a diagnosed bipolar, clearly expresses the effects of this brain disorder in her book, “Touched with Fire.” She wrote that bipolar illness “encompasses the extremes of human experience. Thinking can range from florid psychosis, or ‘madness,’ to patterns of unusually clear, fast, and creative associations, to retardation [slowing down] so profound that no meaningful activity can occur.”* This very succinctly and accurately describes how I have often experienced bipolar disorder.
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