Thur recap of Military Group 5/11/2011

Posted: May 12, 2011 in Army, Harvest Military

This week we talked about discernment in our friendships. We know that we are sent to be a witness for God, but I am talking about the people we lean on for advice and counsel. It is more likely that we will be dragged down by the wrong crowd than raise them up. It is important to witness, and to share the gospel, but Jesus surrounded Himself with 12 people who he spent almost every moment with. Those 12 (besides Judas) were like minded individuals. We need like minded individuals in our lives for support.

Discernment
Noun: The ability to judge well.

A.W. Tozer: “Among the gifts of the Spirit scarcely one is of greater practical usefulness than the gift of discernment. This gift should be highly valued and frankly sought as being almost indispensable in these critical times. This gift will enable us to distinguish the chaff from the wheat and to divide the manifestations of the flesh from the operations of the Spirit.”

Paul on Discernment Eph 5: 17-18
[17] Don’t act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do.

Discernment in our friendships

-Many times I feel that we bring upon ourselves our own situations.

-When something happens and we want to get away, we tend to lean on the wrong people. It is really easy to try and drink your problems away, or go along with something you would not normally do.

-One time a friend a mine, a Christian friend, called me and told me he had “done it this time.” He had just got married, and they were doing ok, but he was having a hard time being the man of the house. He was making allot of decisions he should not have, and was getting into trouble.
Some of the guys in the military invited him to Hooters restaurant… and he said yes.
Then his wife called and asked where he was… so she got pissed, and rightfully so. I mean whats the whole point of a restaurant called hooters right?
So he found himself in a bad situation with an upset wife, all because he hung out with the wrong people.

-The Bible talks about this, and tells us what to do about it.

Prov 1:10 NLT My child, if sinners entice you, turn your back on them!
Prov 1:10 MSG Dear friend, if bad companions tempt you, don’t go along with them
C.S. Lewis on relationships: Screwtape letters

BACKGROUND: the book is wrote to a demon who has one soul (the patient) under his watch. The demons name is wormwood. Wormwood has only one mission, to send his persons soul to hell. Wormwoods boss is his uncle, Screwtape. They write back and forth about the eternal position of the soul, and what their next moves are. Screwtape tells Wormwood how to tempt the man into slipping into hell.
Guess what one of his tactics are? Relationships!

Pg 8
Screwtape, “Dear Wormwood, I note with grave displeasure that your patient has become a Christian.”

Pg49
The good news: The Patient has made new friends.

Pg50-53
The patient starts to realize what is happening: He notices that they do not have the same things in common, and that they are unequally yoked.

2 Cor 6:14 Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness?

His attitude change: He starts doing and saying things he does not want to.

1st Tactic of Wormwood: delay the obvious. Do not let the patient know he is being tempted.

2nd Tactic: getting the patient to live two lives.

-They want him to essentially wear a ‘Christian’ hat. When he is in church he will act one way, when he is around his friends, he will act another. Does that sound like anyone you know?

James 1:22-24 NIV
22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like.

-This is a tactic of the Devil and demons. They luring Christians into worldly relationships and turn them into hypocrites.

Last tactic: convince him he is helping others???

-I mean we wouldn’t want to act to religious now would we? Shunning these people would be the un-Christian thing to do… even if it means that we are now compromising…

Results 1: He is spending money he cannot afford, and neglecting work, which will probably be blamed on God rather than his choices.

Results 2: Now the Patient is friend with a whole set of unbelievers, and acting like them to.

Pg57
Results of new friends: shattered Christianity.

-Friends, this is the danger in taking on new friendships. C.S. Lewis gives us great insight on this issue.

Prov 4:13 MSG Hold tight to good advice; don’t relax your grip. Guard it well-your life is at stake!

-When they say your life is at stake, it literally is! I mean there are two real places we go when we die, one is really good, one is really bad.

-We have to make the right choices, not that those choices get us into Heaven, only the blood of Jesus secures our salvation, but our actions are a good indicator of if we are living for Him or us.

-What I mean by that is what Paul tells the church in Galatia. They were under a false teaching that they had to be circumcised and then they would get to go to Heaven, much like many Americans are under the false pretence that if they say one prayer that is all that matters.

-Now the scripture does say that if you confess with your mouth and believe in your heart that Jesus Christ is Lord you will have eternal life (Romans 10:9), and that is true, but out of that confession you begin to change your ways. Hopefully this is not anything new to anyone here, I am just saying it like this because I am new here and I wanna be really clear on my beliefs.

Gal 5:19-21 HCSB sums up the works of the unbeliever
19 Now the works of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, moral impurity, promiscuity, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambitions, dissensions, factions,
21 envy, drunkenness, carousing, and anything similar. I tell you about these things in advance-as I told you before-that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

-If these are the characteristics of the people we are hanging around, we are more likely to stoop to their level than lift them up to ours.

1 Cor 15:33 Do not be deceived: “Bad company corrupts good morals.”

-I think we all have something that we did or do around our secular friends that we wish we could take back.

Proverbs 13:4 says, “He who walks with the wise grows wise.”

-That is another reason why I always give out my card and why I will always take a call day or night. Because someone might not know another Christian and they may be in need of some advice.

-We should at all times either have or be looking for someone to disciple, and have someone disciplining us, that is just good practice, not a requirement. But, if you are always being stretched by someone to answer questions you would not have thought of on your own, or help someone out in their walk with God, that just means you have to do some more research on your own in the Good Book, and every time you open it you are just that more blessed.

And now, to leave you with some scriptures:

Prov 3:5 NLT Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.

Prov 3:4 MSG Earn a reputation for living well in God’s eyes and the eyes of the people.

Prov 4:7 NLT Getting wisdom is the wisest thing you can do! And whatever else you do, develop good judgment.

1 Cor 16:13 Be alert, stand firm in the faith, act like a man, be strong.

-Through Proverbs, it talks all about living right and living wrong. If you haven’t done it yet, you should read the proverb of the day for a month.

-The book was wrote so that we could have wisdom, and Solomon the author was known as the smartest, wisest man to ever live. In fact if you read through Ecclesiastics you’ll see, he is kinda loosing his mind from his immense learning.

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