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How to Study the Bible- Part 1

Sebastien Braxton
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Sebastien Braxton is the CEO for The New Life corporation.  He is also a member of the InVerse team, a young adult bible study program on Hope Channel.  He resides in North Carolina w/ his wife Candis and their four children.   His latest project is an online course on how to study and preach the Bible.

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Recorded

  • June 8, 2015
    7:00 PM
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So this morning are some in or is about how to study the Bible and. I'm actually in the process of writing a book on this. And so what I'll be doing throughout the CAN'T meeting if you're interested in finding out when that book will be launched is going to be probably an e-book not a physical book on. I'm trying to be green. You know. Save the environment save some trees. And also be a blessing to ever. I can. But yeah I have a little sign of thing on my i Pad just to get your name and e-mail address. And then I can let you know. I'm going to be doing an entire series called The whole men and. I want to basically publish a series of books. Just so you know this is like completely cutting edge stuff like I haven't told anyone this. So you save it for the youth ten. Can't tell the adults who knows what might happen. But they are all going to do a whole series called The whole man and the first book I want to write. Is about how to study the Bible. And a lot of it is something that I've picked up over the years just to my own personal experience as well as from my own kind of drawing from other people and things that they've shared with me. Things that I've appreciated about the way other people have taught the Bible or what I've noticed how people break things down in particular books. And so trying to distill that and make that excessively to all of us is my aim and goal. But the simplicity of what I'm trying to do is to allow us to get more out of the Bible. Amen. That's really the desire. So how to study the Bible is not so much about the mechanics I read books that are that are so technical. I mean it's really not a blessing it turns it into like a scientific experiment. And I feel like I'm back in high school again in chemistry class. And it's a you have to follow these steps and you have to analyze this and if you don't own all these books. Maps of the Bible atlases Bible names dictionary of Bible Biblical imagery. You just can't really get into the text and I'm like. I feel like this is school this is academic. It's clinical. But an experience with God really can't be. Form your lies. You can say this is the formula and it's interesting that in the Bible. It doesn't tell us what Jesus's devotional life was like only one time they walk in while he's praying but we don't get that prayer all we get is Lord teaches the brain. So I would imagine that. Maybe when Jesus was learning the Bible while he was a carpenter. In Galilee. Perhaps of people noticed how Jesus was studying because the first these were shocked at twelve. Of how intelligent and knowledgeable about the Bible that he was. That tells you something that Jesus took the Bible seriously and when he was tempted in the wilderness. He didn't say oh command the Stones be made bread. He poured out his you know New Jerusalem version. And was like it says here in Deuteronomy No he was quoting the Bible from his mind. So Jesus not only understood the Bible he was memorizing the Bible. So clearly. Jesus took the word of God seriously not just to study to understand it. But to hide it in his heart to the semen. So let me start with a quote that a Christian author wrote to some young people back in the eighteen hundreds. It says it may be difficult for you to love to study the Word of God. At once. When you have not been in the habit of studying it. But God will help you pray for his forgiveness for neglecting his holy word so long and then beg of the more to give you love an interest in the his word. Be in earnest in the matter. When I lose my love for the Bible. I am alarmed. I know that I do not love Jesus. If I do not love to search the book that testifies of him. So let's break this down. We have to recognize that loving to study the Bible or studying the Bible is something that is difficult. If you really think about it if it was easy. There wouldn't be a need for seminars. About how to study the Bible. The same thing goes for relationships. If you want to pack a seminar. Do it about relationships. It will be packed. Because if it wasn't difficult. Why would people come to these seminars. But I want you to notice that. If this thing is difficult What is it that makes it difficult the author says it may be difficult for you and I to love to study the Bible. At once. That means immediately. So the initial difficulty is the fact that you and I are impatience. We want to love the study the Bible today. We want to crack the Bible this morning. Be excited. Every single day for the rest of our lives. Is not going to happen. Especially if you were nine. Have not been in the habit of studying it. But the author says. God has promised. Divine help. So even though it may be difficult for us to love to study the Bible at once. The author says. But God will help you so much the same and that's good news. Listen when you want to study the Bible you thinking Lord I'm not having devotions I'm not in my word. The blessing is that we're depending. Many times on our own strength. But all along Garces I will hope you are not just leaving you to your own devices. And so as you go I know that in your nature it is not natural for you to love to study the Bible. And even if you are Christian. It is not natural for you to love the study the Bible. This is a supernatural thing. We do not love the things of God and that is a hard reality for us to accept. Even as preachers and ministers. Not going to send a parent tell you like on having amazing devotions going to the third heavens every morning. I crack the Bible. That would be lying to you. The reality is even we as pastors and preachers and leaders and people who you think are so spirits of the powerful. We also have to grapple with the same thing. Because a study the Bible takes spiritual discipline. But the blessing is. We don't have to fake it till we make you. God can help us. The next recommendation of the author is that we need to pray. When was the last time you prayed that God would give you love and interest in the body. You know it almost sounds like a desperate career. You'd have to have been bored with the Bible for so long. You see men. Just no point in this. And finally you get to a point say Lord. Look I'm going to be honest god. I don't even want to study the Bible. I'm not interested in the Bible every time I read it it's into on paper. I'm just going to this because everyone in my community says this is what a good Christian does some going to read my Bible in the morning. But I'm not getting anything meaningful out of it but loving to study the Bible really starts with reconciliation with Gone. It starts with prayer and asking for His forgiveness and washing we ask for His forgiveness. Because the author says. When I lose my love for the Bible. I am alarmed because I know. I do not love Jesus. If I don't love to study the book The testifies of him. You know many people like to come to church or even not come to church and say oh you know. God knows my heart. You know I love the Lord. And when we sit down and realize that this is not just a regular Christian author. That this is Ellen White who is seen Jesus in vision. She says. When I lose my love for the Bible that means. She has lost her love for the Bible. She's talked to Jesus face to face. She's seen heaven. She seemed to things that were reading in the Bible. And as she's up in vision and seeing these things. This does not change her love interest in the Bible. Sometimes she loses it. And she says to herself. When I lose my love for the Bible not when I lose my love for praise and worship. Now when I lose my love for evangelism. Not what I was she says when I lose my love for the Bible. I know I don't love Jesus. I know it. So a very simple way to gauge in our relationship with God is to say look do I love to study the book that testifies of Jesus. You can come and be like I love chemistry but you refused to pick up a chemistry book. Would you believe them. No you wouldn't believe them. I wouldn't believe them. You'd be sitting there thinking to yourself you don't love chemistry you don't even only chemistry book. You avoid all chemistry classes. You don't even want to talk when we bring up the subject of chemistry you want to change the subject. You become disinterested but I love chemistry. Why do we think it's any different when it comes to the Word of God in Jesus. Think about it. Some young person comes up to seven are men. You guys we should just have a Bible study right now Nama and I got to go back to my chalet get ready for the sports. Hey man why don't we do the odd Naaman. Now we could do that later let's talk then they come back to your chalet. And it's always awkward for that one person I want to have worship or pray to get the before you go to sleep at night. Oh Miss Prudence are praying for a second my emailed him trying to catch a ball my Instagram. This is our reaction to spiritual worship Him being drawn to God and only reason I'm tell you cause I know I've been that person. I'm like man this is the want to pray right now. I mean it's not off the chain like I mean when I go to some countries in the world. They want to pray. Every second of the day. So I go we're going to leave let's pray. Then we get into the vehicle let's pray. Then we get out of it less free. Then as I brothers eventually know you. Let's come back to. Let's pray. I'm like listen. It's fists. I love prayer and everything is put out. Even two months oxygen can kill you think it's. So in the same senses like sometimes you got to study sometimes you gotta work again just pray all the time. The words of an ally he that only prays will eventually cease to free. Because in doing nothing nothing to pray about. So let's start with this idea. I want to know that I love Jesus. And if I want to know that I love Jesus. Then the first thing that we have to begin with is we need to ask God for forgiveness. Because we have neglected his word don't come to learn how to study the Bible thinking I'm going to give you some formula. That's going to inspire you to want to study. Only God can help us in that area. I'm not saying it doesn't take discipline. But before going further. I'm going to give you guys a second. And whoever in this audience. Says look I need. To ask God for forgiveness. Because I have been neglecting his word. I'm going to give you a chance to pray that right now if that is you. You can buy your head. You can pray you can talk to Jesus on what you want. You've been your word every day you can say Lord help me to stay in my word. But I was going to give you one two minutes. Say that prayer. Told God. Lord give me love and interest in the Bible. You can pray for their Father in heaven. We pray for your forgiveness. Lowered it is a humbling thought to realize that what happens in the closets of our lives. Truly gauges our walk with you Do we really love the Lord. And so we're coming in earnestness to beg of you to give us love an interest in the Bible. Forgive us for neglecting your word Lord. Place of resolution. In our souls. And we claim that promise that you can give us a new heart. In a new spirit and you can cause us to walk in your ways. Take out from us. That heart of stone. That will not be moved. That was stubbornly resist. Spiritual contact with Gone. And give us what we need lowered. That we may drawn nearer and nearer to you. This is our prayer. And we offer this up in Jesus's name Amen. So let's talk about studying the Bible. How to study the Bible is the first I want to talk about is before you study. Before you study. So one of the first things I learned about getting more out of my study time was what I did before I studied the Bible. You see bible study is something that our hearts must be prepared for. You can just go. Wake up with crust in your eyes rolled in on the bed. Stumble into the hallway to get to your room where you like to study the Bible. And you have your staring at the page and you don't and off in an hour. You're not so bad you can go from REM sleep. To debug and study me you was dreamin rapid eye movement. And although some of your UK are down but study the Word of God. No no we have to recognize that. I'm not going to go from screaming at my kids and trying to push through all my particular research paper deadline to prayerfully reflect on Ecclesiastes just good Lord I just need ten minutes. It just doesn't work and it doesn't work because we have too many voices in our heads. You see. We hear the voice of the bills we hear the voice of our boss we hear the voice of our professors. We hear the voice of our kids our siblings our boyfriends. Whatever it is all these voices going on in our heads and God's voice can never be heard through this din of noise in the soul. So before we study. It is important that we engage in activities that focus on minds that hushed. The other voices. Some of things that I find helpful for this is obviously one is singing. Did you know that music. Focuses your mind. One of the reasons why it's important to sing. Is it helps to focus the mind. It is actually a complete soul. Experience. Your body your mind and your spiritual are all indeed. When it comes to singing. The other thing is having a prayer list. Sometimes it's very easy to start by praying. Than it is by studying. So usually I have a prayer listen I'll say look I'll just pray over this prayer list. And as I begin to think about the people I'm praying for the things I'm praying about it begins to wake my mind up. And I begin to realize things that I may be interested in studying which I'll come to in a second. Certainly is I think about my day ahead of me. And I start writing notes about what I have to do and how I'm going to bring God into what I'm doing for the day. This is very important so I look and say wow I have to go do a seminar nine thirty. I have to do midday manna. I have a rehearsal at this time. I have a meeting with this I'm going to take my kids from these two hours. And I start thinking about my day. And single kid Lord. You know this this is going to be difficult but if I do this and I'm I'm going to my day with God. It helps me to wake up and get the other voices out of my mind I gave them attention. I've addressed it so now I can go to my worship thinking. Our got this research we are going to do Audi email this person. I sat down in plenty. The fourth thing is exercise. Sometimes go to the gym. Get a jog take a walk in the neighborhood. I love this one because exercise relaxes me more than anything else. After I go to the gym my mind is so focused on just like. I'm so ready for devotion I can't even help myself and simple like Lord. Exercises a blessing because before you study. You need a mind to be clear and exercise relieves stress. And that's important many of us are lack of discipline in Bible study comes from our lack of discipline in our physical exercise. There's a direct correlation. Sometimes the other things take a shower. Just wake up go to the shower we have this rule in our minds that if the first thing I don't do when I rolled out of bed. Is go to my devotion on my knees Oh no I've committed the unpardonable sin. There is no rule in the Bible that says that has to be the literal first thing you do. Steps the Christ counsels us that it should be our first work. To consecrate ourselves to God. Some US and rolled out the bed jump in a car and start going to a business meeting. And then have your devotion. Then it's not your first word. I'm saying roll out a bit do what you need to do to prepare your mind. And lastly you sit down and you give prayerful and intentional thought to what you were doing and why you were doing. One of the things that they have in Islam. Is this concept of creating intentions. When a Muslim goes to the temple to pray or of their having their prayers to out the day. They don't just start kneeling down and pray and you know my Muslim friends are like Christians are just so flippant it's like oh yeah Hamas are less print list pretty. They're like How do you do that you're coming into the presence of your king. He says if you were in a kingdom you can't just be joking in the lobby. In a walk into the presence of the king. He says no you stay in a room. You are prepared. They let you know the king will see you. And you have to compose yourself. Your bearing has to be appropriate. So he says when we go to pray. We do this thing. I can spray the Arabic word but essentially it means to create intention. They sit down in your minds and they say. I am coming here to this place. To pray to my gone. And why am I doing this because I need him. Because our law is merciful. And when I was listening to my Must I said men. This thing is crazy because I said it's true and then he knows down to pre. And so I looked at this and I said many times as Christians when we come to study the Bible our minds are off on something else. And we just try to jump in but one of the things I find to be helpful is what am I trying to do here. Before open the Bible. Why in my study. And what am I seeking to do. And I am using my will to say I decided to study the Bible right now because I know that I need God I need to hear from the Lord because this is a stressful part of my life where I need council or Lord I just need a word. I need to hear from you I need to know that you are near that you're a walking with me. Sometimes it's all you need. But in least sitting down and creating that intentionality will bring us to a place where our minds will be more ready to engage in the Bible and to stick to the task. Because the other thing is when we study we get distracted. Now the next thing I want to talk about is what to study. One of the reasons I find it people struggle to study the Bible is they don't know what to study. But you see. Daniel always gets me right take your Bibles go to Daniel Chapter nine. Daniel Chapter nine. Now Daniel. Always gets me especially in chapter nine. Because inched. Scuse me in chapter nine. Are you there. In Chapter nine the Bible says in the first year of Derry is the son of a house or is of the lineage of the Means who was made king. Over the realm of the county and in the first year of his reign I Dand you'll. Was that next word. I can hear you understood by what the books the number of years specified by the word of the Lord through. Jeremiah the prophet. That he would accomplish some of the years. In the desolations of Jerusalem. Did you know that Daniel did not know it was only going to be seventy years. For the captivity he was not where Jeremiah was. But Jeremiah had someone writing in so the Bible is suggesting to you and I that when Daniel is here. Daniel was studying the writings of Jeremiah to understand something he had not understood before about this captivity. Then he goes to this beautiful prayer and experience with an angel being cos the fly swiftly to answer his prayer. This is how Daniel gets me because I read this experience in his life and all I'm thinking is that. I want that kind of experience with god. I go from the Bible. To prayer to an angel on my shoulder. I've come to give you skill in understanding and says the wide says. If we all would humbly ourselves and petition the throne like Daniel. We would have the same experience. But you see the critical thing here is that the whole experience began in the Word of God. And what is this what is is trying to teach us you see. This is trying to teach us that we should not study. Random passages of the Bible. You see this suddenly answers are question. Because Daniel. Just didn't sit down and say oh it was a devotional circulating to the captives in Babylon. Oh yeah you're getting by men in this captivity are men reading this devotional. How to not be a slave would be a slave. Oh yeah this is powerful devotional. No he wasn't got just going to the video kiss one chapter a day. Daniel was studying the portions of the Bible that related to his present day. Experience. That's what he was studying he was looking at Jeremiah because it was relevant to him. Wait. There's something in the Bible about how long the captivity will be. I need to study that. And I need to understand it. And that understanding in study will inform Daniel's prayer. And do informing Daniel's prayer. It begins to give him the basis for an experience with god. We're an angel comes to give this man. Understanding this is a prophet. What is he the Bible God speaks through him he makes himself known to me visions speaks they have injury. But even Daniel. The Prophet needed to study the Word of God to understand. And he was studying the parts of the Bible that related to his. Every day. Experience when it comes to devotional time. Relevance. Revives. One of the reasons why are our devotional times are dead. Is because of things were starting are irrelevant. Somebody should a city men were over here like I'm going through the Gospels. Oh there's a woman a man with a withered hand. OK. Is it right to do lawful on the Sabbath and all the sudden you're dealing with the fact that you and your boyfriend got issues. You want your mama still not reconciled. You still got these personal soon you're grappling with in your life but you're reading about a man with the withered hand and you wonder why you get bored after of a couple days. We have I am going to read this thing you know. I have to read the Bible because I should or we go down to even further right where we basically being breastfed psycho Here's a devotional. One Bible verse couple paragraphs and I want to have prayer for us as if that's what it means to commune with God. And we think that's going to get us by into the kingdom. Through the time of trouble. And we go survive on some one verse in a couple paragraphs. You need oil in your lamp. So in this experience we want to study we need to study those things in order that relate to our actual live you see the passages or chapters that we study. Just do not speak to our issues. Our struggles of brokenness. The pain. Experiences of every day life. I call this the concrete. Principle. Whatever we study in the Bible has to immediately relate to what you're dealing with. And I'm talking about that very day that very day. Don't just think about all you know I have finals coming up no no no you know what are you dealing with today. And please believe everyone has something going on today. You need counsel. You need wisdom you're dealing with some issues you're still recovering from your previous relationship whatever that is. That's what we need to do. So let's just say right for example let's say on in an environment right where it's hostile to my faith. Then I should look at the examples of Moses and Esther in Joseph. I'm going to university to Seems like everything is against a Christian worldview. How did Moses do it. How did Joseph do it. How did Esther make it. How did Daniel make it and they even had their own compromises. So now you're thinking you know how do these people survive in an environment that was polytheistic completely and tied their personal faith. But they still survive. I want to study their experience to know how they did it. Or let's just say maybe I recently took a leadership role. Right at work or at church or in a local service congregation. Then study the Kings and Chronicles. You want wisdom on leadership. The Book of Kings and Chronicles. Has a lot to tell you about leadership. And you know one of the fundamental principles that book teaches about leadership is the key to the power of leadership is integrity. Every king. It was all determined on did he do what was right in the side of the would do you know what as in there. That's in there. Because a king has two people two choices either he does what's right in the side of God or he does what's right in the side of the people. Every time a person becomes a leader there is always a temptation to become a people pleaser. So right in there are looking at Kings and Chronicles and I can see right a boom people police are listening to these councillors but he will listen to the wise councillors then you go to Amazon Oh yeah I hired these men to fight. The profit comes as listen the Lord is not with them. If you go with them. God is not with you. He comes out of problems like but what about the million dollars I paid them. He says God is able to give you much more than this. Whatever you lose to follow God to do the right thing. God can repay him do even exceedingly abundantly a both. These are lessons on leadership. So I started studying Kings Agron of course because when I was taking leadership positions in campus ministries I'm like I need guidance. And this is where my devotions become exciting because I'm learning new principles all the time. I'm like this dude is a terrible leader or. You look at it teaches you. The danger of success. Because when he became strong in a came into his mind to go into the temple. When you were you just started surfing. It went to your head. Oh yeah man got his blessing on every side got weapons. I can't be defeated. All the so now you want to take the priesthood. You lost your mind. The man died of liver C. or you look at Hezekiah. You start well. But and terribly here this man praying. Powerful experience with God God preserves his life. He moves the sun for this men. And at the end when the people from Babylon come. You want to talk about everybody but Jesus. It's a lesson in leadership. People think Oh if I if I got into Hollywood in all these major television broadcasts then. Then I would all be witnessing to beyond saying all these people that's what you think that's one trying to pursue my music career that's what I need to make it into sports management try to give a bob a city to Rinaldo. When in reality you start hanging with an old Oh you mean talking nothing about Jesus. Yemen this is how I practice you know model corner kicks this is odd practice my free kicks. Oh yeah well what do you do how do you spend the boss like come on everything but the Lord who got you there. So lesson. So those of you were like oh yeah I want to become a doctor and all this stuff. I'll do ministry. Now you in medical school. Or you graduated. You can do in ministry has a kite. And the lesson that it teaches us. You know another one is. Maybe I'm curious right how to disciple and mentor the young people in my church or in my youth group or in my small group. Or maybe even a wayward person or one of my family members or youth in my community where that's where the Gospel is rife with lessons on how to disciple a mentor someone. You can't get better than Jesus as a teacher. He is the best teacher. Just read the parables. They're brilliant. You think of yourself. You can't get better than this like. How does he do this. How does he take something so simple so basic and infuse this thing with the depths of troops that continue to move people to this day. None of you guys are even in farming. And you move by the parable of the seed in the sword. Or you understand what I'm saying. That's a powerful teacher. When people are yeah we don't have a Jesus is book two point zero. All we've got a new version edition. Fourth Edition. You can improve on the parables. That's a powerful teacher. When you can improve on your content. You just I get this is a classic I mean everyone uses this is. You just use the parables you can't get around. Powerful lessons to illustrate heavily troops. And Jesus is teaching us how do you take an invisible reality. And make it understandable and accessible to people he says. A parable is the best way. And now you realise how can I teach better. Look across. How can I disciple. Rather than going to my people in decidedly Hey listen meet at five o'clock OK let's talk about your relationship was talk about this. Jesus says no that's not how I disciple people I had them walk with me. I want you to see what I do how I live. And by nature. They will ask questions. And when the questions come. That means they are teachable. And when they are teachable. They're not ready to learn. And it will absorb everything you say. But you put him in his contacts are years time for mentorship. So. Tell me about your walk with the Lord. Listen. When a brother comes with you when he sees how you have devotions him pray. They will ask. That's what happened with Jesus. He's teaching us how to disciple people but the problem is people don't want to decipher because in one people in their lives. Sorry doesn't work. I recall some years ago. When I was grappling with whether I should end a relationship. And I'd already been praying about this thing for weeks. And I had a spiritual father at the time and he in our US decided to call him up because I just didn't have peace. Either way. I knew I didn't really have a real reason to end the relationship. I mean we had some boundary issues but I was like I mean this is easy to manage. So I thought to myself. Let me call him and get his advice. So we start talking as I said Vashon you're just scared of commitment. You see to get marry. He said you were in college you know you're trying to keep your freedom trying to maintain your options. My wife. Hi I don't think so. So you know we're going back and for that we got to the point when we start having these heated discussions with my spiritual father. Ms crazy. This is never ever happen in our relationship. No no I think you're wrong you're wrong. Come down. Let me finish let me finish. It's like. What is this. So all the sudden. You know one day. I think he just had enough. So he comes in we're on the phone again and I'm looking at the phone like man I don't know if I can handle another discussion right now mega class. So I answered a phone. He's like hey just want to check in with you if you made a decision. Now I'm still praying and. The struggle was what he was telling me is not what I was hearing in. It just didn't resonate. I would talk to him and I'd be like you know. You not is when you have someone you spiritually respect is just like their reasoning is so powerful you just like me and I came to say nothing. But then you go to prayer no more is right now. I don't like but Lord A seems so clear. So this is what I was. This is what I was dealing with. So all the sudden. You know he calls and we have we start having a conversation Islam a little lot more pleasant. And he comes and he says. You know it's about show me tell you the truth I'm bias on bias. I'm like your bias would you me so well you know. My marriage is. You know not the best or not of the same faith. And he said I just want you to have a good. You know Adventist marriage. You know this girl seems like she really loves the Lord she's committed to the church and. You know my thing is I just want you to get married have a family. You know it's every sort of but I'm just bias. I was shocked. Totally blew my whole world view on my you thinking people giving you Biblical counsel and their bias. So of course I left this experience. Hung up the phone we prayed together. He apologized. And in all the sudden I was like Lord any council so the Lord took me to the story of Isaac and Rebecca. And as I wanted our story. The thing that shocked me about the story because of powerful stories one of my favorites to preach is that how it starts. It says Oh in God had blessed Abraham right he was well he was old will strictly being years and God had blessed him in all things. Now my what does this have to do with Isaac and Rebecca. Why is this even in the chapter. Who cares Abraham's old. Who cares and he's been blessed this is not a bow him. He had his life he got two wives multiple kids. So it's like. Why does this in the chapter and then I realize. Because I sick. Had intrusted Abraham. To find him a wife and the reason why he was willing to trust Abraham is because the text says God had blessed him. In all things. Then I realize. Abraham has no beis Abrams not trying to fulfill something in Isaac that he did not have he had a wife who called him Lord. He had a wife who was willing to leave everything all their wealth to walk with Him and follow God. Abraham was blessed when it came to marriage. He had his struggles. But he was blessed. So Avery is now looking at Isaac and saying let me. I say you need to get a wife. Right now. We need to find some a what's the closest town we can find. He's not going to counseling with bodies he told Ellie is our. Put your hand under my thigh in Swear to me. You will not take a wife for my son among the Canaanites. No pagan wife. None of his dating outside the faith. Listen. God has called us as a family. And through us. My son. In deceit. Abraham would tell his son through you Isaac. All the families of the earth. Are supposed to be blessed if it's through Isaac that that seed will come you think it doesn't matter who you marries. It makes all the difference. So while the sitting there having this discussion really is Ari says you will swear to me. And he says but what if I find a woman and she's not willing to come. Abraham says then you are free from your oath. If she is not willing to come. You are free. But don't go to the Canaanites. And so Abraham. Being given the task by his son. And what his eyes are doing. Meditating in the field. Just talking to the Lord. Trusting that God would guide his father whom he trusted in Pulis and that's when I realized I needed Abraham. I need someone I can talk to that can do two things one that can tell me no. Sebastian. This is not a good relationship. But the problem is when you and I pursue relationships. We don't want anybody to listen and we start a relationship is we start doing what you on the phone with your friends. Then that significant other is calling him and let me get you better let me get you back where you go him and not I just got take this call Who is that don't worry about him and I hit you back. Hey what's going on how you doing in this for this what we're doing. Then we get off the phone and in a person I hate let's hang out. Yeah not can do Thursday and we start planning our time with these people or so we're not around other people who are going to ask questions. Who might block us. Because when the. When love is awake and that's my song the song says. Do not store of love before its time. Because when nothing is awaken. You will not be stopped. This thing is a job or not you just be rolling. Keep going downhill with gravity. And all you think it is no no no. Ought I personally try to tell me no block them. I'm talking to you about my relationship. You know all the people you want to talk to are the ones here grow. He's fine. He's been is here is that yeah go get your words good surance. What does the girl you've got given you relationship advice. Know her relationship was all jacked up. She was just in now she's out because she's back in. So I do the hokey pokey turn yourself around like. This is what people are doing. But I think and Rebecca says if you want God's advice on what to do in relationships he says guess what get an ape or him. Someone who God has blessed in all things. They're not going to counsel you with any bias. So when I do premarital counseling with people. My wife and I sit down and we tell them up front our goal is not to rubberstamp your relationship. We're not coming here to be all we did pre-marital counseling with Sebastian and Candace not a value No lot of good advice no we're like Listen. Our goal of this counseling is to see if this relationship will survive. That's the point. So don't come and say I want. Premarital counseling or relationship advice. As if the assumption is make sure we stay together. That is not the goal. The goal is. Is this relationship something God can bless. That's what you should be concerned about because marriage in about happiness is about holiness. That's difficult for people to swallow. But that's the reality. You going into marriage think if you want to be on the Riviera. It's like oh yeah you know we are so in. Yes that's. That's not marriage. You might get that one week out of the five years. The other time is about holiness. Because people who can ever romance they can even be kind. Isaac and Rebecca says get an Abraham. So you need someone to tell you know. The second thing is an Abraham is an individual not only can tell you know. But a person who is not biased in their council to you. So when you sit there and say all you know we're having these problems right now as we're talking in our courtship and Abraham a look at you will be like. That's problematic. That's problematic A girl just recently. From the Middle East called me and she sets of ash and you know I really respect his older brother in the Lord is so I want you to be involved from the beginning of the process with this relationship potential. It's a great I'll be praying. Put it on my prayer list. Praying about this thing. She calls me up a week later. And we had planned to talk so I said you know tell me why you like him. Cetera et cetera et cetera and. So we talked. She explained everything and then. I said So what are his weaknesses. What are the things you would love to change about him. So she starts thinking for a while. You know what is takes a while right to weave through all that he's amazing. Since then after we get to he's amazing now we really he's human. So then she stars well he does have this and he does this he does his right. So she's talking. I said Well let's follow bar discussion give me some time to pre. So I pray couple days she calls me back. We talk again. She says well yeah you know we just recently had a conversation in. I had these concerns. And I said yeah. I'm going to tell you honestly what my advice is year. I said. It sounds to me that he doesn't respect you. She's like What do you mean I said. You just told me on three different occasions in three different ways. Then when you start having a conversation with him. You know he cuts you off. Right. You start talking he just talks. Not waiting for you to respond. Then when you guys have to make decisions. Where you going to go to eat all these different things. He asked you a question but then he's just telling you why. His options are the best options. Said sounds a little narcissistic. A B.. Sounds like he doesn't really respect you as a woman. And you don't want to be with someone who doesn't respect your opinion. I said you're going to end up being a house servant. So I said. My advice is other you need to create some distance. Just be friends for know. She's like yeah. OK she prayed about it. Then she texted me the next week she said yeah you're right. Right after you and I spoke. We had another conversation and everything you were saying. I just saw it clear as day. She's like I try to say some he cut me off then I try to disagree. He would be like No no no that's not respect for you have to be respectful. She's I want. This. But you was taking his for like three months before you called me. Because he's amazing. So as a result she said you know Sebastian I'm really thankful for the conversation but it reminded me from the beginning. This is a listen. Having a neighbor him. From my situation council from the Bible. Save me from a lot of foolishness. And with my one she'll tell you my wife and I had spoken. That we were mutually interested I came to her told and she said she was interested to. We prayed. After we prayed. I told her I said I need you to know that I have spiritual parents people that I respect she knew who they were. And I said I need you to know I would not date you I won't even married. If they tell me no. And they say no I won't even teach. She said OK I understand. So I went to my spiritual parents. They said. Sebastian. You need to wait at least a year. Not even dating. Just friends. I said OK. No argument. Spiritual Father came to me says about ssion I want to read you something goes to Proverbs thirty one. He says I'm after the research after the. One of the last verses of that section says. The them. Many women have done virtuously. But dollars sells them all. He says about you traveled the world. Since you were young. You've met women all over the administration. Organizing events. Evangelism missions. G Y C conferences. He says. How confident are you that Candice excels them all. Many women do virtuously. But he says about should you know God's calling upon your life you can't just marry anybody. This is not just a check it off the list. You know get married. You know eat the rice have babies. It's like. That's not the kind of thing we're talking about here. So we said. How confident are you of course right in the media in the media in the middle the conversation I might yeah absolutely no question. But of course I know better. So my Ari. I'll think about it. So one year. I waited then you know he told me he said I want you to call any woman that you used to date. Your last girlfriend and any girl that you guys had a mutual interest but maybe never develop to materialize in tell them. Right. This was going on with me and Candace you want to call them. If it's not that there was that many. But I'm like What's so he says you have to do it. And then of course most rigid mothers like. Yeah that's a wise. That's a wise decision. He lets them know you moved on. It lets them know you respect their feelings. And your conversations are understood in that context. So I called them all told them I said this is the plan. This is what's happening. I just want you to know. Then after that call him. He said OK. Now you have my blessing. Then he come. You came in he met with Candice. And he said who. What is what is your relationship to Sebastian. She said we're just friends. He says Are you sure. She's like. Yeah we're just friends. You're not dating. You're not boyfriend girlfriend cause he told me one year right. So I wasn't there so he told her when I wasn't there. So she had no idea why he was asking such as I know we're just friends. He says OK. He says Do you know why he waited. She's like no. And he said. I was the reason. I told him to wait and so then after he you know explained the whole situation and said look I have nothing against you. You guys have my full blessing and cetera et cetera. Walked away from that situation and when it was time to get married and all these different things. We were reflecting upon that in you realized you know. Just the blessing of having a neighbor him. And going to your whole experience in Journey. And if it was good to know you did it the Lord's way. And you had counsel. When you were bottom and so on we have a few more minutes. Sunny to jump off to some other things. But let's just say right. You don't know where to go in the Bible. To find a passage that relates to your everyday life. This question comes up a lot so let me just give you six tips. The first one is make a list of keywords. Or ideas that surround your present day experience so let's say you're like well. You're not going to find you know. New Beau college. In the Bible. Right you're not going to find oh yeah I'm struggling with social media. It's not in the Bible. So you've got to think of key words I'm struggling with time I'm struggling with love I'm starting with a nigger I'm struggling with jealousy. So any key words that are associated with what you're dealing with. Next thing I want you to do number two is prioritize them. So which ones are the ones that are most pressing in your life. So after you look at the key words you say these are the key words of what I'm dealing with my life. Now put them in order of the ones that number one is the one that's most impact in my life right now. Thirdly I want you to brainstorm and jot down some passages in your mind that you think. Speak to those topics right. One or more of those words in that list. So as your brainstorming. You're like OK Key words I'm dealing with right now for a stray ssion failure. Self-worth. Right as I'm thinking about this OK. I prioritize and self-worth is number one. You know. Frustration is number two. Simly problems number three. Then I start thinking of verses that might speak to self words. Right so I think you know someone thirty nine right you are fearfully and wonderfully made some I study that. Because I speaking to an issue that I'm dealing with. Then you have I want you to now search. So if you're old school. You use a can coordinate my so you try to find those actual words in the Bible. But obviously. Today you have online bible programs which tomorrow I try to show you how to use some online tools. Interactively so you can kind of see. Hey this is that you can do really fast. You don't have to know Hebrew Greek all this kind of stuff that makes it easy. But the key thing is try to stick with the same translation and search in the Bible for verses that speak to those words. Now. If nothing substantially comes up initially. Then you can utilize like an on line to source or something like that to find synonyms for your keywords. So OK another synonym a way of saying this is this and that can help you go through the process again. In even after that you still don't find any Bible passages. Then it's good to consult someone a pastor. A minister an elder. Whatever. But it's helpful. That you do that background work because it's. It gives you more focus and intentionality to what you're doing. Now the last point I want to end on for today is the issue of literature. In the Bible. Anything that is written is considered literature. And the Bible is full of literature and it expressed through various different forms. So this is. This is the first thing that we need to understand. You have to recognize that after you find your passage in the Bible. You have to recognize what kind of literature is this. Right so let's say here in Proverbs So you set off on a proverb because I'm struggling with my mouth in the Bible says. Death in life on the power of the tongue. So now I'm looking at this proverb OK death and life on a part of the tongue but it's a proverb. So the question is do you read Genesis like it's revelation. No. Do you read Revelation like as Genesis. No because are two different kinds of literature. So when studying the Bible have to recognize what is it that I'm actually working with. It's like trying to play basketball on a tennis court. There's a big net in the middle. So you like this is going to be problematic. When you're trying to play the game. It's the same thing in trying to study the Bible. And you're not you're trying to treat it as one kind of literature. When it's another. So in looking at this. Different types of literature. Require different types of observations. And that's what we're going to pick up tomorrow. As we start with historical narrative. And it will go into making actual observations and interpret in the Bible. And then applying it. So any before I close are there any last questions and what we talked about. Yes. Abraham. These are mine the concepts of relationships. But consulting. Oh every day life. On what I would do is usually if you're struggling to find someone like that and assuming your parents are not very godly. You want someone outside understand. I understand that. So I'm saying assuming your parents are Godly. If your parents are praying people. You start with your parents. Then from your parents. It's true you need someone to who's not your parents' disappearance of us. They have an agenda for you. So you need to marry Tyrone. It's like. So I don't care. Oh well should bring home. If an entire room. You know I'm sorry I can't give you my blessing. So the thing that I would tell you is first of all. A lot of times going to events. Hearing different speakers can also kind of trip you up to that because if you know how many one of your immediate church context or your immediate personal sphere of influence and you have to go beyond. And I wouldn't recommend do anything online through Facebook or anything like that. I would meet them face to face talk to them. So that's why going to event like can't meeting talking to different speakers that are here. If they're interested in fields in which you're interested in a professionally or whatever. You sit down and talk with those individuals. The other thing is in the absence of older people. There's also the opportunity to have an inner circle of peers. Right so usually I try to find people that are where I want to be. So I'm looking at him he may be the same age as me but he's very strong in this area. So either he's a very exceptional father or this person is an exceptional pastor or exceptional Bible worker. So look at them and I would say. I say OK I'm going to form an inner circle of these people. And I'll say look these are the people I would go to during that council I would talk to about my relationship with whatever I'm facing in life. Because they are strong in those areas and are going to bring a sense of they understand where I'm coming from. But at the same token. They are people that are respect because they are excelling in particular aspects of their relationship with God or the ministry. So if you can't find something through an event or something like that then. That's what I would do find your peers. That you find you respect. And that you can trust. Yes last one and I have to close the eyes on those so if they your peers just back on that. And if they will close the series. Should I be making should it be gentle orientated towards to same. Because I've had tracked on is S. of his. I wouldn't do I'm going to prayer partners with opposite gender. But I think in your council you can have them. Because you'll be meeting with them as a group. So I might have a phone call or might we might all get together and sit down and I say look I need to talk to guys about this but I think it's good to have someone of the opposite gender out of spiritual mother and. That was very helpful because you guys can give certain kind of counsel and women can give certain kind of counsel but it helps to be balance. So my spiritual father maybe like Sebastian she says is coming. We have to be dedicated. We need soldiers right then and you're like man I'm inspired like I want to stable till three in the morning studying the Bible. And your spiritual mother's life so how long did you sleep last night. You're like well you know. OK Well I'm sure Bible study will always be there. It's not going anywhere. But if you're not sleeping you'll have a clear mind. Or she'll look at me and say yeah I understand what you're trying to do. You're trying to do the Lord's work and be conservative in your budget but she's like when you're working here. You should not share an office with this woman. You should have a separate office. Because you have to separate your personal relationship from your professional relationship. She must respect the fact that you are the director. So you don't work around her. But my my in my spirit without even to tell me that he's going to wait till I have a problem and then he's like. What were you thinking why would you do that you should versus you know your spiritual mothers like a little more nurturing and things like that so in the same sense with the peers. Having a woman. Of this. Around the same age that you respect. She would be good to have an egg Rupe. You know with guys and girls that you can talk to and say Look here's my situation is so I'm dealing with and she can be like this with his girl trying to do to you. She's playing you need to leave. Versus other guys will be able to pick up on that because women know women. A lot better than we know when. Some I should say have been right. God bless you. Let's pray. Father in heaven. What it Joy. It is Lord. Begin to discuss how to get into your word better. Father we ask that you would continue to guide us give us understanding. Instruct us. And we also pray Father for your Holy Spirit to give us that love an interest that we prayed for help us to begin studying those passages of the Bible that are concrete. That relate to our everyday experience. And we pray Father that this would help the Bible to come alive to be relevant to us and to allow our steps to be ordered by Thank you for each one here that this media was brought to you by a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free sermon. And much more. If you would like to know more about the visit or.

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