Cultivate Lesson 14             

Review from last week
1. Where does good come from?  James 1:17 Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father

2. So why is there evil in the world?   Sin and people's free will  

3.  Seed thought: So now we experience a world of good and evil but we must remember that all good is from God.
 

Students write down the blue questions and the red answers.

Title:  "Why Does God Tell Us What To Do?"

1. What are some VCS rules that you think are unfair?  dress code, access to 2nd & 3rd floor after 3:30pm, gum chewing, parking, lanyards

 

2. What are some of God's rules that you think are unfair?  passion for the opposite sex before I'm old enough to get married

Sometimes it seems like God is no fun, or worse, that He actually wants us to be miserable.  For these people the Bible seems negative, like one long "Don't look! Don't touch, command. 

What we need to do is take a step back from a self-oriented perspective, and we can see that these rules and boundaries tell of a God who desires His people to live whole, rich, blessed lives.

3. How does pop culture portray some of God's rules? sex outside of marriage is ok, .

Sexuality, for example, is so valuable that God went to great lengths to protect it inside the marriage relationship.  Sex is like fire:  inside the fireplace of marriage it is warm, delightful and life-giving- but once it skips over the boundaries of the fireplace it is a ravaging, devastating force that brings destruction.  God set up "fireplaces" for out health and joy, and in His rules and commands we can trust His goodness.

4.  Seed thought:  Sex is like fire:  inside the fireplace of marriage it is warm, delightful and life-givingt. 

5. How do we keep God's rules? You have to change from the "religion do's and don't s to more of a relationship.  Then you can make life changing connections with God.

This lesson is basically challenges religion versus relationship. If we treat salvation or Christianity as a religion then we are susceptible to experiencing a very distanced kind of connection with God. I say distanced because if you treat following Christ as a list of dos and don’ts then you will most likely miss out on having a life changing connection with God.

There is a popular song out right now called Take Me to Church. The song basically sums up Christianity as an empty or dead ritual while presenting a romantic obsession with a particular woman or man as a true spiritual experience. There are a lot of different commentaries about this song but the message pretty clear.

Unfortunately, like the writer of this song, many fail to experience a genuine connection with God while attending church or while growing up under a Christian influence. The author also seems to have real issues with the sexual boundaries set in the word of God. While the song features a man singing about his love for a woman, the video is about a homosexual couple.

You see, if all you take away from the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ is “well, I guess if I follow some of the rules in the Bible then I might get to heaven,” then you are missing a major element of why Jesus came.

Christ prayed that we would be one with the Father as He was one with the Father. Christ also said to abide in the vine… The book of Psalms in chapter 91 says, “He who dwells in the secret place of the most High, shall abide under the shadow of the almighty…  Paul prayed that we would know the length depth and height of God’s love so that we would be filled with all the fullness of God.

 

6. What do we have to know about God? we need to know the length depth and height of God’s love so that we would be filled with all the fullness of God..

Christ prayed that we would be one with the Father as He was one with the Father. Christ also said to abide in the vine… The book of Psalms in chapter 91 says, “He who dwells in the secret place of the most High, shall abide under the shadow of the almighty… 

7. How do I get close to God? become friends with God walk and talk with your friend.  The Bible says that Adam walked with God in the cool of the day. Adam was so sensitive to the presence of God, that he hid himself after sinning when he felt God coming near.

Jesus came so that we could be so get close to God that we could sense His presence and enjoy having a genuine connection with Him.

This said, the boundaries, commands, or rules that God sets in the Bible are still a vital aspect to our connection or relationship with God.

The Bible defines loving God as obeying God. We must set our hearts to obeying God if we ever want to truly show our love for Him.

8. Do I have to obey?  Obedience to God’s word is not just something we do to get God’s approval. There is a reason behind every boundary set in God’s word whether we see it or not. His boundaries protect our life.

You see I compare life to a fire. Fire warms us, cooks our food, and brings light when handled correctly. However, if fire is left without proper boundaries it is destructive and even fatal.

The boundaries God sets in His word bring order to our lives so that we can enjoy life without bringing destruction upon ourselves and the lives of others.

 

 

Why do we need to know about God's rules?

1.  To let others know what is our perspective.

2.  Helps to guide others toward heaven

3.  then we begin to make the right decisions and form the appropriate responses to questions that effect everyday life. Because, in the end, the truth does set us free.  It is our decisions and actions that reveal what we really believe.

 

Small Group Discussion

QUESTIONS FOR CULTIVATE ARE BELOW

WHY DO YOU THINK SOME PEOPLE FEEL LIKE CHRISTIANITY IS EMPTY? OR PERHAPS WHY DO SOME PEOPLE THAT GROW UP IN CHURCH MAKE THAT GENUINE CONNECTION WITH GOD WHILE OTHERS DRIFT AWAY AND EVENTUALLY LEAVE THE FAITH?

HOW DO WE GO BEYOND EXPERIENCING CHRISTIANITY AS A SET OF RULES AND RITUALS TO TRULY MAKING A CONNECTION WITH GOD THROUGH CHRIST?

HOW DO WE GET EMPOWERMENT OR THE GRACE TO HONOR GOD’S BOUNDARIES?

WHAT WOULD YOU SAY TO A FRIEND WHO WAS STRUGGLING WITH SOME OF THE BOUNDARIES IN THE BIBLE LIKE THE SEXUAL BOUNDARIES AND FELT LIKE IT WAS TOO UNFAIR AND WAS CONSIDERING LEAVING THE FAITH?