Bible study

7 reasons why Resurrection Sunday (Easter) matters

Because He rose, we rise.

1 Thessalonians 4:14

God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep.

John 6:40

Everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life.

1 Corinthians 6:14

God raised the Lord and will also raise us up by his power.

Romans 8:11

He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.

Romans 6:4

We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death that we too might walk in the newness of life.

Luke 14:14

And you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the just.

1 Peter 1:3

According to his great mercy, He has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.

How to prevent identity theft

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The Youth and Young Adult Ministry discussed how to prevent identity theft at the January Milk 2 Meat. These are four preventative measures for protecting your identity from an enemy who seeks to steal, kill and destroy your life.

1. Put on your spiritual armour by giving God glory and getting in His word.

2. Hide the Word in your heart that “I might not sin against thee” (Psalm 119). The Word is your treasure.

3. If you find yourself victimized — repent quickly and get back in fellowship with God. Ask the Lord to “create in me a clean heart and renew a right spirit within me.”

4. Be ready to walk in liberty. When the enemy returns he should meet a new you. Be prepared to not fall the same way you fell before.

Prayer for 2014 is that we would know who we are and not have our identities stolen from us and that we would activate the word of God.

Learning to Live Holy

Ephesians 2:2
When you come to Christ, you must change. Change is sometimes difficult, but God requires us to become new creatures. (see Romans 6:4) We must not conform to this world, but must be transformed by the renewing of our minds. (See Romans 12:2) A transformation takes place when you become saved. Don’t let anyone make you believe you are the same after God saves you. Your mind has to change. You can’t be stuck and comfortable in your old mindset. You must be willing to go through the process to become the person God requires you to become.
God wants His church to be like Him. What is Christ like? He’s holy, righteous, patient, long-suffering, forgiving, kind, etc. Those are the characteristics that He wants us to exemplify. In the flesh dwells no good thing and it wants to rise up. However, the Holy Ghost will help you control it and to display godliness, but you have to yield to it. Paul told Timothy to be an example of the believer in word, deed, and in conversation.
It is a good thing to be saved and to know that you are chosen by God! God saw and chose you before you saw yourself. You were chosen before the foundation of the world. Once God saves you, you have to learn how to walk and to please God. When you receive the Holy Ghost, you are not immediately perfect. That is why you must learn to live holy and to grow in grace. God’s purpose for His church is that it is holy. It is to be nothing like the world. (See Ephesians 1:4)
We have to live a life of holiness. God expects nothing less. Holiness means we live a life that is separated from the world and for God. When you are baptized in Jesus’ name, you bury your sins and rise up to walk in the newness of life. You are to be different when you get up. You are not to go back to the same thing you were doing before you were baptized. You are to be a visible example to unbelievers. Let others see Christ in you!
We have to believe to the saving of our souls. Once we believed, we were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, which is the Holy Ghost. (Ephesians 1:14) You have to have the Spirit of God to go back with God when He comes for His church. The best way to know you have the Holy Ghost is not by speaking in tongues, but by the fruit you bear. You have to show the Holy Ghost in everything you do and in everywhere you go. You must also feed and maintain the Holy Ghost. You must live holy.

Get in the Word and Stay There

1 Peter 2
We have to come to a place where we yearn for and cannot rest without God. If we get to that place, we will be able to grow in God. When you desire something or someone, you spend time with it or them. We need to feel this way about God’s word. We should so attached to God that we feel we must hear from Him. If you really want to hear God’s voice, pick up your Bible. God is the Word.
We have to develop a hunger and thirst for God. If we do, we won’t have any problem yielding to the will of God.
In order to present yourself to God, you have to lay aside those things that hinder you from walking with God. (see 1 Peter 2:1) Deny yourself. The flesh will not be subject to the law of God, so we must mortify the deeds of the flesh. (see Romans 8:7; Romans 7:23; Romans 8:13) The Holy Ghost will give you power and authority over your flesh and over anything the devil has to offer. (see Acts 1:8)
Even after you receive the Holy Ghost, you must develop a deeper desire for God. If you become slack in reading, fasting, and praying, you become weak and vulnerable to the attacks of the enemy. Reading, fasting, and praying feed you spirit. Don’t grow so busy with the cares of this world that you starve your spirit, grow weak and faint.
You have to get a desire for God just as a baby gets a desire for milk. (see 1 Peter 2:2) The word is the voice, will, and strength of God. There’s nothing that can happen in your life that the Word of God doesn’t address. (see 2 Peter 1:3) At church should not be the only time you hear the word of God. You must read and study it for yourself. (see 2 Timothy 2:15; Isaiah 28: 10)
When you reject the word, you are rejecting Christ. If you truly love God, you will stick with Him, get closer to Him, and most importantly, keep His commandments.

Be Holy!

Hebrews 10
We have to let the spirit of God rule in our lives. We must get to a place where we stop making excuses for our shortcomings so we can move forward in God. It’s not possible to backslide without overriding the Holy Ghost first. Be led by the Spirit. (see Jude 1:24) There’s no way to go wrong if you adhere to the word of God. (see Psalms 119:11)
If you get off track with God, accept all of the responsibility for it. Backsliding is no one else’s fault. Beware of the wiles of the devil, for he is your adversary. Be sober and vigilant so you can recognize who your enemy is. Do not fight your brother and sister in Christ but instead go against the devil who is trying to use them. You can defeat the spirit that causes division if you let the Holy Ghost rule.
We must also get to a place where we can go to the throne of God for ourselves. We can’t always depend on others to pray for us, especially if we don’t pray ourselves. Jesus died so we can have personal access to God. Jesus is our high priest and we can go to Him at anytime. Nobody can take care of your needs like Jesus can!
Since our bodies are temples of the Holy Ghost, we have to allow Him to dwell and rule. He sets the standards. He is the high priest over your “house,” which is your body. This means we can’t do anything we want to do with God’s house. We have to seek God to make sure we are following His will. (see Hebrews 10:22)
If we serve God in the beauty of holiness, He will give us the desires of our hearts. If our hearts are pure, the spirit can lead and guide us into all truths. We can’t go before God and doubt and expect God to move. (see Hebrews 10:23) Hold to the profession of your faith without wavering. Holiness is always right! God is calling for holiness. Holiness is not a religion; it is a lifestyle.
You can’t allow anyone to sway you from holiness because you then are being swayed away from God’s promises. Don’t lose out on what God has for you! Be holy!

Follow God’s Instructions

Holiness is not a religion; it is a lifestyle. We come to Christ because we want something different than what we were used to, which means we have to change the things we were doing. We must adopt new lifestyles. (see 2 Corinthians 5:17)
God is very particular and wants us to follow all of His word. Life in Christ requires that we abandon lives of sin. What is sin? All disobedience to God is sin. When we decide to live for The Lord, the devil tries to get us offtrack and to make us backslide. We can’t be in backslidden states and take heed to the word. Backsliding doesn’t happen overnight. The enemy works on your mind for a while. You may not feel like going to church, reading your word, fasting, praying, etc. Don’t let yourself get into that state where you lose out with God.
God wants us to give all of ourselves to Him. (see Romans 12:1) Since we have been purchased by God, we cannot do just anything with our lives or bodies. Our bodies and lives belong to God. God cannot dwell in an unclean temple.
How do you present your body as holy? You deny anything that is unholy. This is not beyond your ability. God has called us unto holiness; to sanctification. Sanctification means that God specifically set you aside. You are so special to God that He hand picked you!
Living for God only requires that you follow God’s instructions. Not following God’s instructions brings shame upon you. If you feel like you are struggling in an area, ask God for help.
1 Corinthians 6:9-20 God is clear on what He accepts and what He doesn’t. Even if the government changes their law, God’s law is the same. We must follow God’s law. Even if you are guilty of straying from a godly lifestyle, God can still forgive you if you repent. (see Romans 6:1-2)
Living for God is not hard; it only requires following instructions. God’s yoke is easy and His burden is light! (see Matthew 11:30) Follow instructions and follow God!

GPS: God’s Positioning System

In this world, all of God’s children are on a journey, and the Holy Ghost, which is the spirit of God in us, is our guide. The Holy Ghost will guide us into all truth. (St. John 16:13) It did not come to force us to follow God, but instead, to guide us into His will. Following God, therefore, is a choice.
(Focus scripture: St. John 16:1-13)

If we have the Holy Ghost to guide us into all truth, then how do people stray from God? Straying is a result of not reading the word of God. Becoming slack in reading leads to becoming slack in prayer. But God is merciful to warn you and to help you get back on track.

Even when trials seem to overtake us, God is still there to guide us to victory. When Lazarus died and Jesus went to visit Mary and Martha, Mary said, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died.” (St. John 11:21) But Jesus went on to raise Lazarus from the dead. Even then, death had no victory over Jesus. Also in St. John 11, Mary seemed to be very busy when Jesus came to visit. Likewise, we sometimes become “too busy” to listen to God and to go to church. We can never become to busy to hear God. God will guide you to victory when you take time to listen and to heed His voice

The Holy Ghost gives us power and authority to claim victory in our lives. But we must have faith for the Holy Ghost to work. Our faith increases by hearing the word, and by fasting and praying. We must be focused on God and in tune with the Holy Ghost. We must have determination to break through. If you want a break through, pray until you get a breakthrough, whether it takes thirty minutes, an hour, three hours or more. Stay in prayer until you meet God.

God can move in our lives now just has He did in the past. But we must be determined and spiritually minded. Know where you are spiritually, walk in the word, and strive to be where God wants you to be. The word of God will transform your mind, and consequentially, your life.

We might think that life would be much easier if God would just control us and make us obedient. However, God has given us the commands to follow, we just have to be determined to do whatever necessary to be obedient. Sometimes we must find a method that works for us that will help us be obedient in reading the word and in prayer. Go back and get a fresh anointing so you can stay in tune with God. Transformation may not feel good, but it WILL yield results. Transformation is a process. When you put forth a real effort, you see change.

There is a right way (a way that seems right to man), a wrong way, and there’s GOD’s way. Follow God’s way and He will guide you to where you need to be.