Welcome To The Learner I

    

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12 Chapters  The Learner I  (12 Week Course)

   Chapter One                        Becoming A Disciple  

  Chapter Two                        What is Man?  

   Chapter Three                     Man: From Fall Unto Faith!  

   Chapter Four                       These Three Are One!  

   Chapter Five                        Light Vs. Darkness!  

   Chapter Six                          Who Is Man With Christ?  

   Chapter Seven                    Prayer And Confession  

   Chapter Eight                      Forgiveness  

   Chapter Nine                       How To Handle Hard Times  

   Chapter Ten                        God And Deliverance  

   Chapter Eleven                   Faith In Action  

   Chapter Twelve                   Workers Needed  

 Plus Memory Verses at the end of each Chapter!

Faith in Action

Chapter Eleven: Faith In Action

Primary Message: What does it profit my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and hath not works? Can faith save him? James 2:14

Worldview: I believe in God and I don’t have to prove it to anyone. I’m not called to do tell others about Christ, That’s not my gift.

Evangelistic Emphasis: “Even so faith, if it has not works is dead, being alone” James 2:17 

It is well documented in history many of the great accomplishments of various named Christians. The list is enormous starting from Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and bringing us into our modern times with C.S. Lewis, Billy Graham, and D.L. Moody for just a few. There is no way we could do justice to all the great works that God has done through those who walked by faith, but this week we are going to look at what they all had in common and that is faith in God, but not just faith that they claimed to have, but faith that they lived, faith that they put into action. With this we want to keep in mind Hebrews 11:6 "For it is impossible to please God without faith!" and put our faith into action! Putting our faith into action means becoming workers in the harvest and serving a greater purpose than ourselves.

 

One of the effects of having too few workers in the harvest was even recorded in Jesus ministry. Mathew 9:37 “Then saith he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the laborers are few.” Friend, the work of God is often resisted because it requires commitment. Not many people want to commit their, time, money, or talents to the work of Christ. There was a story in Africa where the famous Dr. Livingston was at work and received a letter from a few willing individuals that read; Have you found a good road for us to come to you yet? This from some supporters that wanted to do the work of God but resisted the idea until a road was made for them. Dr. Livingston replied: If you will only come when a good road is made for you I don't want you to come, I want those who will make the road and then come. He was talking about their commitment level and faith. Putting our faith into action requires commitment. 

Mathew 9:35-38

35 “And Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people.

36 But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.

37 Then saith he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the laborers are few;

38 Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth laborers into his harvest.” 

Have you ever been presented with a task that caused you to  look at the magnitude of the task and conclude that you will need others to assist you? Here we see that Jesus looked at the multitudes and saw the condition or the magnitude, in which the task at hand would require workers, volunteers and devotees that saw a purpose much greater thanthemselves. He was moved with compassion for the multitudes understanding that like sheep when they are traveling through life they primarily keep their head down failing to look up and see where they are going and failing to realize how far they have drifted away from the Shepherd who protects them from ravening wolves. His great concern was that his loved ones would be eaten up by devouring wolves in sheep’s clothing and began to ask the Disciples to pray to the Lord of the Harvest that he would send laborers to help to keep the sheep near to the Shepherd.

The Lord of the Harvest of course is Jesus and Jesus was with them already so why did he ask this? He wanted the Disciples to understand the purpose of having leaders in the field and why it is critical to understand that lives go astray like sheep when they are left unattended.

After reading these verses what questions do you have?

Answer the following questions:

What caused this feeling of compassion that Jesus experienced?

What was Jesus doing at this time?

When Jesus saw how much work was to be done what did he say?

What was his instructions concerning prayer?

Mathew 11:1-12

1 “And it came to pass, when Jesus had made an end of commanding his twelve disciples, he departed thence to teach and to preach in their cities.

2 Now when John had heard in the prison the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples,

3 And said unto him, Art thou he that should come, or do we look for another?

4 Jesus answered and said unto them, Go and shew John again those things which ye do hear and see:

5 The blind receive their sight and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them.

6 And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me.

7 And as they departed, Jesus began to say unto the multitudes concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken with the wind?

8 But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft raiment? behold, they that wear soft clothing are in kings' houses.

9 But what went ye out for to see? A prophet? yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet.

10 For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.

11 Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.

12 And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.” As the earth travels around the sun it has times in which it is closer to the sun and times in which it is not so close. In the close times we call this summer and the not so close times we call it winter. If the earth were close to the sun always and too close then it would of course burn up and if it were always far away it could freeze and have no life at all. Here we see that John the Baptist who was once preaching with a fire in his heart and who was absolutely positive that Jesus was the Messiah the son of the living

 

God now asking Jesus “are you the one” We all have times such as this when affliction takes its toll. What can we do? Jesus simply told the Disciples to go and remind John of the miracles of the past. Sometimes we need to be reminded of all that Jesus has done for others and us. We need to remember where we came from and all that he has done to save us. Even the strongest have weak times and when we are weak lest us return to the foundational truths that Christ has laid before us and recall all that he has already done!

After reading these verses what questions do you have?

Answer the following questions:

Why do you think there are so few workers for Christ?

What emotions do you believe John the Baptist was experiencing and why?

Have you ever grown weak and began to doubt?

Why do you think that the workers of God suffer?

Mathew 8:5-13

5 And when Jesus was entered into Capernaum, there came unto him a centurion, beseeching him,

6 And saying, Lord, my servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, grievously tormented.

7 And Jesus saith unto him, I will come and heal him.

8 The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed.

9 For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it.

10 When Jesus heard it, he marveled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.

11 And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.

12 But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

13 And Jesus said unto the centurion, Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee. And his servant was healed in the selfsame hour.” It is a rare thing for a Centurion to call anyone besides the Emperor “Lord” Who was this man that even Centurions in which had servants of their own and who themselves only called the emperor Lord and served no other would actually have them calling him Lord? This man was the son of the living God, the Messiah who had the power to save and heal. Here this Centurion realizes the healing powers of Jesus and goes to him in faith, not demanding Jesus to heal his servant, not ordering Jesus to heal his servant, but instead in such an amazingly humble way he requests only that Jesus speak the word and his servant would be healed. Often in our despair we go to God with our urgent demand, with words that point at God stating “You said” instead of humbling ourselves at his feet and requesting him in faith to give his word and this will be enough. Is his spoken word enough to do what we need?

After reading these verses what questions do you have?

Mathew 12:33-37

33 “Either make the tree good, and his fruit good; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by his fruit.

34 O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.

35 A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things.

36 But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.

37 For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.” Good and bad, words are judged! We say a lot of things out of our mouth and seldom remember that what we have just said or are planning to say will determine good or bad in our life. If a tree is known by its fruit we in like manner are known by our words. Either make our words good, and the fruit good, or else make them corrupt, and the fruit corrupt, for we are known by our words, for out of the abundance of our heart the mouth speaketh! We tell on ourselves all the time, what type of person we are simply by what we say.

After reading these verses what questions do you have?

Answer the following questions:

If a man is a good worker for Christ what will he bring forth?

How can you tell?

What happens to every person that does not bring forth fruit?

And every person that does?

How can a person bring forth much fruit?

Does Jesus call us branches?

What does it take to glorify God?

James 2:14-26

14 “What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him?

15 If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food,

16 And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit?

17 Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.

18 Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.

19 Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.

20 But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?

21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar?

22 Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works

was faith made perfect?

23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.

24 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.

25 Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works,

when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way?

26 For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.”

Earlier we talked about what we say, but it is also what we do that tells the story of our heart. Physically the heart is an amazing machine:

From the moment it begins beating until the moment it stops, the human heart works tirelessly. In an average lifetime, the heart beats more than two and a half billion times, without ever pausing to rest. Like a pumping machine, the heart provides the

power needed for life. But, spiritually the heart is deceitfully wicked! Woe! Wait a cotton picking minute! My heart is a good heart!

Truth is..... our hearts are wicked apart from Jesus. It is an amazing organ that works tirelessly, but it can also bring harm to us if we allow it to lead us astray from God. “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” Jeremiah 17:9 With this in mind, how can we trust our decisions? We must allow God’s words and our belief in Jesus to dictate to our hearts what we must do. Without this we will surely do what seems right to us, but leads to destruction.

After reading these verses what questions do you have?

Answer the following questions:

What use is it to claim to have faith but never act on it?

Can faith without works save anyone?

Just claiming to believe is this real faith?

Luke 19:1-10 and examine Zacchaeus' commitment level and remember what Dr. Livingston said earlier.

Luke 19

1 “And Jesus entered and passed through Jericho.

2 And, behold, there was a man named Zacchaeus, which was the chief among the publicans, and he was rich.

3 And he sought to see Jesus who he was; and could not for the press, because he was little of stature.

4 And he ran before, and climbed up into a sycamore tree to see him: for he was to pass that way.

5 And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up, and saw him, and said unto him, Zacchaeus, make haste, and come down; for to day I must abide at thy house.

6 And he made haste, and came down, and received him joyfully.

7 And when they saw it, they all murmured, saying, That he was gone to be guest with a man that is a sinner.

8 And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord: Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken any thing from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold.

9 And Jesus said unto him, This day is salvation come to this house, forsomuch as he also is a son of Abraham.

10 For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.”

PROACTIVE PARTICIPATION

What is proactive participation? It is an attitude that supports fervent involvement in an activity. Today the church is struggling and numbers of attendance is down, rarely is an unbeliever approached to be told about Jesus Christ and the way of life through him is exchanged for a more politically correct way of life. This inactivity for Christ is a reflection of peoples experience and their passion for the things of God. To overcome this decline we need to go all the way back to our first love and our first experiences with God. Take a trip back with me for a moment in time that enables us to experience God again.

1 Corinthians 10:1,2 "Moreover Brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all of our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; and were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea." Here we go back to when God led his people by day with a

pillar of a cloud and by night in a pillar of fire! Imagine wandering through life without a leading, we were all like this at one time, we all went astray and had no support, can you remember the time when you was without Jesus in your life?

Thank God that Jesus came to us, he came to be a light to us, we

did not deserve it and we didn't do anything that he owed this to us, yet he decided and chose to be a pillar for us.

The standard definition of pillar is as follows; support, column, shaft, prop. Pillars are used to support the weight of heavy buildings. Whenever God asks us to do a task he always provides support and his support is always sufficient. He supplies our needs according to his riches in glory through Christ Jesus! We are all baptized. This word defined means participated. We all participated. When they were in the desert under the cloud they participated in this exodus. In the desert we were baptized unto Moses, we participated in the exodus that delivered us from Egyptian slavery.

Romans 6:3 "As many of us as were baptized (participating) into Jesus Christ, we were baptized (participating) into his death, we was buried with him by participation into death, that like as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the father, even so we should walk in newness of life." "For I do not want you to be ignorant of the fact brothers, that our forefathers were all under the cloud and that they all passed through the sea." Baptized by experience, our participation is what gives us the experience.

Are you still the same after participating in the Exodus? In the

death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus? If you haven't changed the next question is: Have you participated?

Exodus 13:18-21 "But God led the people about, through the way of the wilderness of the Red Sea: and the children of Israel went up harnessed out of the land of Egypt. And Moses took the bones of Joseph with him: for he had straightly sworn the children of Israel, saying God will surely visit you; and ye shall carry up my bones away hence with you. And they took their journey from Succoth and encamped in Etham, in the edge of the wilderness. And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light; to go by day and night." Folks in all these things it takes you being involved! If you want to experience the moving of God in your life and know the blessings of God, it takes you getting involved! Many people are seeking direction in their life, they need leading, what better thing is there than to know that God can lead you. Scripture tells us to seek ye first the kingdom of God and all else will be added unto you. Also in all your ways acknowledge the Lord in all your ways and he will direct your path. God can provide direction! But You Must Participate! Participate in this Exodus, participate under the cloud by day and the fire by night, participate in Christ' death, burial, and resurrection. Participate by going down with the old and up with the new! Experience God's deliverance through getting involved! Imagine death coming right at you and you have nowhere to go and the sea parts to give way to a road of deliverance. They saw God's deliverance because they were involved in the event and didn’t sit back in Egypt wondering.

Romans 5:1-4 "Therefore being justified by faith we have peace with God through our lord Jesus Christ: by whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only so, but we glory in tribulation also; knowing that tribulation works patience; and patience, experience, and experience, hope." Experience is the knowledge or skill acquired from actual participation in the activity! Experience is the gift that comes from God when you participate in him. One says, "I had a bad experience or I didn’t like the experience in church today. Is it because you didn’t participate or because your participation was poor?

 

There is a very good chance that they sat on the pew and stared into space wondering what they would do when it's over! The Israelites experienced deliverance from the Egyptians because they participated, they didn’t refuse to go. Imagine this: “Moses, Moses, Moses! You want to do what? Walk through the desert to where?” “Moses, I just want to relax, do you have any idea how many bricks I had to make this week? Come on Moses just let me sit here in the pew and worship God the way I see fit ok! There are so many others that can do it please let me alone! You want me to hike through the hot desert after working hard all week and you don't even know where we are going to?” Ok so now you decide to get involved, what do you do? There is a right way and a wrong way, Let's look at Isaiah 58.

Isaiah 58:1-14

1 "Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and show my people their transgression and the house of Jacob their sins.”

2 Yet they seek me daily, and delight to know my ways, as a nation that did righteousness and forsook not the ordinance of their God: they ask of me the ordinances of justice; they delight in approaching to God.

3 Wherefore have we fasted, say they, and thou seest not? Wherefore have we afflicted our soul, and thou takest no knowledge? Behold in the day of your fast ye find pleasure, and exact all your labors.

4 Behold ye fast for strife and debate, and to smite with the fist of wickedness: ye shall not fast as ye do this day, to make your

voice heard on high!

5 Is it such a fast as I have chosen? A day for a man to afflict his soul? Is it to bow down his head as a bulrush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? Will thou call this a fast, and an acceptable day unto the Lord?

6 Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?

7 Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; that thou hide not thy self from thine own flesh?

8 Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the Lord shall be thy reward.

9 Then shall thy call and the Lord shall answer; thou shalt cry and he shall say here am I. If thou take away from the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity.

10 And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and the darkness be as the noonday."

11 There is a right and wrong way to be involved, are your motives set for ritual or for caring?

12 Do you get involved because you care for souls or because you are following procedures?

13 My friends in order to experience God we must have the right heart for the things of his kingdom lest he say go away from me I never knew you

14 My friends, is there anything greater than knowing that you have been involved in God's work and that you are participating in life changing events?” This brings us to a close, with every head bowed and every eye closed, if there is anyone that doesn’t know if they have the Lord Jesus and would like to know for sure, now's the time. If any here know that they haven’t been right with the Lord and would like to get right tonight and walk from today on with his hand leading then come right now. Get up from your seat and come to the alter, to the cross where we can pray with you and the Lord will receive you and guide you in his right way.

Come and receive Jesus tonight, don't walk around anymore wandering through life not knowing the meaning or having any direction, let him lead you and explain all. Let's all get active for the Lord it will be great to see his work in the lives of many.

Memory Verses:

Mathew 9:37 “The harvest truly is…”

Mathew 9:38 “Pray ye therefore the Lord of the…”

John 15:2 “Every branch in me that  bears not fruit he…”

John 15:3 “Now are ye clean through…”

John 15:5 “I am the vine, ye are the …”

John 15:8 “Herein is my father glorified…”

Chapter Twelve : Workers Needed