We come to God seeking comfort, help, salvation, heaven. Deep down we have a longing to be happy. At some point many begin to realize only the Creator can make His creation truly happy.
God himself is the source of true happiness. God himself designed happiness and defines happiness. To be content, to live a life of peace, joy, and perfect love. There are many ways to describe this true happiness. We all know what it is when we experience it even for a brief time. We live among people who confuse true happiness with thrills and excitement. This roller coaster ride often called happiness leads to exhaustion, disappointment and lust for the next big thing.
God offers a better way. A way back to real life and happiness. Before this can happen, we must all be living awake, aware and seeing reality not our fantasies.
The first things we will see will not be pleasant. We will see the idols we have allowed in our hearts. These false gods are there to do what only God can do. We cling to them for security and happiness. We don’t think we can live without them, so we worry and fight to defend them. This Sunday we will look for idols of the heart. you may be suppressed what you see.
Love you and hope to see you.
STEPS TO PREPARE
PRAY FOR THE SERVICES AND FOR YOURSELF
AND ME AND THE OTHER TEACHERS.
PRAYERFULLY READ THE SCRIPTURES
AND CONSIDER THE DISCUSSION QUESTIONS.
MAKE PLANS TO ATTEND A PREACHING SERVICE AND A SMALL GROUP.
INVITE SOMEONE TO COME WITH YOU.
PREPARING FOR SUNDAY: SMALL GROUP QUESTIONS
Ezekiel 14:3 “Son of man, these men have set up their idols in their hearts and have put right before their faces the stumbling block of their iniquity. Should I be consulted by them at all?
Please share if you have seen God, yourself, others or the created world differently after last week’s teaching.
Why do the apostles warn professed Christians to guard yourselves from idols?
1 John 5:21 Little children, guard yourselves from idols.
1 Corinthians 10:12-14 Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed that he does not fall. 13 No temptation has overtaken you, but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it. 14 Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry.
How can expecting and believing others other humans are responsible essential for our happiness, peace, and contentment affect us emotionally?
How will that belief and expectation affect that human relationship? Share an example if possible?
How can we make idols out of family members?
Why is that so damaging?
The first temptation was to make a god of self.
Gen 3:5 “For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
Since Self is the first idol in the bible what does self-mean?
What does Jesus mean when he says…. Luk 9:23 And He was saying to them all, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me.
How can money and possessions become a god that we trust and sacrifice to?
How do we fight back against idolatry?
Colossians 3:5 Therefore consider the members of your earthly body as dead to immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed, which amounts to idolatry.
How much does God say we need to be happy and content?
1Ti 6:6-10 But godliness actually is a means of great gain when accompanied by contentment. 7 For we have brought nothing into the world, so we cannot take anything out of it either. 8 If we have food and covering, with these we shall be content. 9 But those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a snare and many foolish and harmful desires which plunge men into ruin and destruction. 10 For the love of money is a root of all sorts of evil, and some by longing for it have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.
What other kinds of things are we programmed to have godlike trust in?
Psalms 20:7 Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the LORD our God.
Psalms 33:16-18 The king is not saved by a mighty army; A warrior is not delivered by great strength. 17 A horse is a false hope for victory; Nor does it deliver anyone by its great strength. 18 Behold, the eye of the LORD is on those who fear Him, on those who hope for His loving kindness
Isaiah 40:17 All the nations are as nothing before Him, they are regarded by Him as less than nothing and meaningless.
Isa 40:18 To whom then will you liken God? Or what likeness will you compare with Him?
Isa 40:19 As for the idol, a craftsman casts it, A goldsmith plates it with gold, And a silversmith fashions chains of silver.
Isa 40:20 He who is too impoverished for such an offering Selects a tree that does not rot; He seeks out for himself a skillful craftsman To prepare an idol that will not totter.
Isa 40:21 Do you not know? Have you not heard? Has it not been declared to you from the beginning? Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth?
Isa 40:22 It is He who sits above the circle of the earth, And its inhabitants are like grasshoppers, Who stretches out the heavens like a curtain And spreads them out like a tent to dwell in.
Isa 40:23 He it is who reduces rulers to nothing, Who makes the judges of the earth meaningless.
Isa 40:24 Scarcely have they been planted, Scarcely have they been sown, Scarcely has their stock taken root in the earth, But He merely blows on them, and they wither, And the storm carries them away like stubble.
Isa 40:25 “To whom then will you liken Me That I would be his equal?” says the Holy One.
Isa 40:26 Lift up your eyes on high And see who has created these stars, The One who leads forth their host by number, He calls them all by name; Because of the greatness of His might and the strength of His power, Not one of them is missing.
Isa 40:27 Why do you say, O Jacob, and assert, O Israel, “My way is hidden from the LORD, And the justice due me escapes the notice of my God”?
Isa 40:28 Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth Does not become weary or tired. His understanding is inscrutable.
Isa 40:29 He gives strength to the weary, And to him who lacks might He increases power.
Isa 40:30 Though youths grow weary and tired, And vigorous young men stumble badly,
Isa 40:31 Yet those who wait for the LORD Will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary.
How big a part is turning from idols to being a true follower of Jesus?
1 Thessalonians1:9 For they themselves report about us what kind of a reception we had with you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve a living and true God.