When God Changes Your Plans 13 May

(Message 1) What happens when your world is turned upside-down? When we invite Jesus Christ into our lives, He changes everything. Sometimes the transformation is slow, but sometimes it’s an immediate and total upheaval. Join us as we see the upheaval in Paul’s life as he begins his journey to the ends of the earth! #endsoftheearth

2 Lessons for Seekers:

  1. No one is beyond saving.
    I Am Second Video: Brian “Head” Welch
  2. Salvation has a beginning.

 

2 Lessons for Believers:

  1. Never treat your enemies as God’s enemies.
  2. Never underestimate the value of one person brought to Christ.

 

Scripture used: Acts 9:1-22, Ephesians 6:11-12

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  1. Have you ever experienced something that was overwhelming, surprising, or sudden?  Share examples with the group.
  2. Read Acts 9:1-3.  Saul’s former teacher was Gamaliel (Acts 22:3).
    • What had Gamaliel advised the Sanhedrin regarding Christians in Acts 5:34-39?
    • Does Saul appear to be of the same mind as his teacher, Gamaliel, in his reactions to the people of the Way?
    • What does this show about Saul?
  3. Read Acts 9:4-7.  What happened from the viewpoint of Saul’s companions?
    • Why do you think God revealed himself to Saul alone?
    • The Bible says that Saul’s companions were speechless.  If you had been with them, what do you think your reaction/response would have been?
  4. Read Acts 9:8-9.  What’s the longest you’ve been without food or water?
    • Have you ever been so in shock or overwhelmed that you didn’t even eat?
    • How would you feel if you were Saul during the 3 days that he sat in his room in Damascus – blind – trying to figure out what happened to him?  Humbled?  Terrified?  Confused?  Angry?  Put yourself in his shoes.
  5. Read Acts 9:10-16.  How would you feel if God asked you to do what he asked Ananias’ to do?
    • What is the significance of verse 16?
    • Why is it that, being used by God and suffering for God are so often intertwined?
  6. Read Acts 9:17-22. What is significant about the way Ananias addresses Saul?  How does that display faith on the part of Ananias?
  7. Do you ever assume or believe that some people are beyond God’s reach?
    • How does Saul’s conversion change your mind?
    • Read and talk over Philippians 3:1-12 Romans 1:16.
  8. How would you share, or have you shared, your faith with someone who is antagonistic to the Gospel?
    • Read and talk about Ephesians 6:11-12.
    • Discuss Troy’s statement, “People aren’t God’s enemies, Satan is and Satan has been defeated.”
  9. If you have a conversion story, is it like Saul’s (Damascus experience/sudden and overwhelming) or Ruth Bell Graham’s (a process – “I don’t know when the sun came up, but I know it’s shining.”)?  If you feel comfortable, share with the group.

DAILY SCRIPTURE READINGS:

Day 1: Acts 13:1-12

Day 2: Acts 13:13-52

Day 3: Acts 14

Day 4: Acts 15:1-21

Day 5: Acts 15:22-41

Day 6: Acts 16:1-15

Day 7: Acts 16:16-40

 

DIGGING DEEPER VERSES:

Read Jeremiah 29:11-14 (NIV)

v.11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

v.12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.

v.13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart

v.14  I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity.[b] I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.”

ABC’s

Author: Jeremiah chapter 1, verse 1 identifies the Prophet Jeremiah as the author of the Book of Jeremiah.

Background: The Book of Jeremiah records the final prophecies to Judah, warning of oncoming destruction if the nation does not repent. Jeremiah calls out for the nation to turn back to God. At the same time, Jeremiah recognizes the inevitability of Judah’s destruction due to its unrepentant idolatry and immorality.

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Context: The Book of Jeremiah is primarily a message of judgment on Judah for rampant idolatry (Jeremiah 7:30-3416:10-1322:932:2944:2-3). After the death of King Josiah, the last righteous king, the nation of Judah had almost completely abandoned God and His commandments. Jeremiah compares Judah to a prostitute (Jeremiah 2:203:1-3). God had promised that He would judge idolatry most severely (Leviticus 26:31-33Deuteronomy 28:49-68), and Jeremiah was warning Judah that God’s judgment was at hand. God had delivered Judah from destruction on countless occasions, but His mercy was at its end. Jeremiah records King Nebuchadnezzar conquering Judah and making it subject to him (Jeremiah 24:1). After further rebellion, God brought Nebuchadnezzar and the Babylonian armies back to destroy and desolate Judah and Jerusalem (Jeremiah chapter 52). Even in this most severe judgment, God promises the restoration of Judah back into the land God has given them (Jeremiah 29:10). (*from gotquestions.com)

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1, 2, 3’s

Step 1 – Observation:  What does the passage say?

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Step Two – Interpretation:  What does it mean?

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Step Three- Application:  How does it apply to my life?

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Speaker

Troy Knight

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