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S.O.A.P July 18, 2017

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July 18, 2017

Read: Judges 16:1-21

To read this text click HERE.

Scripture- Judges 16:17- Finally, Samson shared his secret with her. “My hair has never been cut,” he confessed, “for I was dedicated to God as a Nazirite from birth. If my head were shaved, my strength would leave me, and I would become as weak as anyone else.”

Observations- The only Nazirite vow that Samson had maintained was to not cut his hair. Plagued by an over-sized ego, a huge sexual appetite without proper boundaries, and a desire to pursue life on his own terms, not cutting his hair was the only discipline Samson was able to honor as an offering to God. Now Samson would be plagued by a life filled with the consequences of his selfishness and unwillingness to honor the gifts God had given him.

Application- What a tragic story! Samson had so much going right for him- natural talents, an outgoing and charismatic personality that drew people to him, and gifts from God. He lacked any sense of self-discipline and humility before God that could have helped him honor important commitments in his life. We, like Samson, can benefit greatly from being desperately on our knees before God crying out for the help we need to joyfully live out our most vital commitments. 


Prayer- Lord, thank You for Your love, grace, and discipline. Thank You for holding me in love and for holding me accountable for living out Your truth. You have every right to expect a lot from me as Your friend and servant. Allow me to learn from cautionary stories in Your Word like Samson, the gifted Judge who did it his way without much focus on You. I pray for You to help me become the person You know I can be with Your help- all for Jesus' sake. Amen.

"He grants a treasure of common sense to the honest. He is a shield to those who walk with integrity." (Proverbs 2:7),

Pastor Jamie

P. S. - Dover Work Party this Saturday, July 22nd from 9:00am-noon. We’ll have a clean-up day at our new Dover campus, 114076 Methodist Church Rd. (just a few blocks north of MLK Dr. on Moore's Lake Rd.) We'll pressure wash, landscape, clean windows, etc. Food donations for workers are also appreciated! Equipment needs: pressure washers, wheel barrows, rakes, hedge clippers, shovels, brooms, brushes. RSVP to Becky Jordan,  .

 

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S.O.A.P July 17, 2017

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July 17, 2017

Read: Judges 15

To read this text click HERE.

Scripture- Judges 15:16-17- Then Samson said, “With the jawbone of a donkey, I’ve piled them in heaps! With the jawbone of a donkey, I’ve killed a thousand men!” When he finished his boasting, he threw away the jawbone; and the place was named Jawbone Hill

Observations- The Spirit of the Lord again rested on Samson with great power, but this didn't have any impact on Samson's character. He could do great things, even though he was seized with the desire for vengeance against the Philistines. In these verses the Bible depicts the arrogance of Samson, who gave himself all of the credit for this great victory against his enemies. 

Application- It is quite possible to operate with the gifts of the Spirit in powerful ways without evidence of the fruit of the Spirit; that is, we can't say that because God is working through us with signs and wonders that we automatically have integrity and character. Paul intentionally placed 1 Corinthians 13- the Love Chapter- in the middle of a long conversation about spiritual gifts, and he called love the "more excellent way." It's not just about what we are able to accomplish, even if we give God the credit, for it also matters who we are becoming as we walk with Christ.


Prayer- Lord, You gave Samson great gifts and abilities that he took for granted. He failed to give You proper honor and credit for working through him, and he didn't bother to be in a process of allowing his character to reflect Your character. Help us never be guilty of taking You for granted or of receiving Your power without honoring Your character. Thank You for showing us the more excellent way of letting love guide us in gift based ministry and mission, in Jesus' name. Amen.

"But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things! (Galatians 5:22-23),

Pastor Jamie

 

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