Day Five: Mutual Submission

 

1Corinthians 11:11-12 (NIV) 11 Nevertheless, in the Lord woman is not independent of man, nor is man independent of woman. 12 For as woman came from man, so also man is born of woman.  But everything comes from God.

Ephesians 5:21 (NIV) Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.

“Men and women are interdependent as they live and work “in the Lord” … Just as the woman came originally from man, now all men come through women (in the sense of being born of women).  There is mutual dependence here regarding their existence … Paul’s conclusion that “all things are from God” … reminds the Corinthians that in the end God is the source of all things and all glory must find its final focus in him.  The statement is broad, indicating that all creation, not just those “in the Lord,” have come from the creator God.” [Paul Gardner, Zondervan Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament, 494-495].

What Paul is saying in 1Corinthians 11 is that we’re not meant to be alone or to do our own thing, but rather we’re meant for relationship.  It starts with worship “in the Lord” since he is the source of all things.  Let proper worship of God impact all of your horizontal relationships in the church.  We are interdependent as we live and work “in the Lord”.  May mutual love and submission come out of our worship and reverence for Christ.

Today, take time to pray about your relationship(s) before the Lord.  Ask God to be glorified in the relationship(s) and pray for unity in the church with Galatians 3:26-28, “So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.  There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”

-JH

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Day Four: Submission within the Church

1Corinthians 11:4-5a (NIV) 4 Every man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishonors his head. 5 But every woman who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonors her head.

Whatever certain members of the church of Corinth were doing with respect to their heads being covered, it was inappropriate for their setting.  They were putting themselves above God and the church by making it about how they wanted to appear.  It was dishonoring to the Lord, to the congregation and to their own shame.

When we’re submitted to God’s order of worship within the church, we honor our Lord and church family.  Submitting to God as we worship together means more of his authority in our praying and prophesying (i.e., not just speaking about the future but speaking God’s message and truth to those around us).  While submitting is often thought of as an act of following, it can also mean stepping into how God wants to use you for the building up of his church.

Ask for more of his authority to pray and prophesy as we worship together, whether in our small groups, large groups, church worship celebrations.  As you worship to ‘History Maker’ by Delirious? (click here) , let us submit and receive God’s authority to minister to his church like never before.

-JH

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Day Three: Submission to God

1Corinthians 11:3 (NIV) But I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is man, and the head of Christ is God.

Do you believe God has an established order, and how much of your life is in this order?

The order in 11:3 is not about a hierarchy with different rankings or positions.  It’s not about inferiority but relationship.  We relate to God by submitting to his authority over all things.  This was exemplified by Christ: “For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me.” [John 6:38]

Submission to God is beautiful.  It is not what our culture thinks in that it makes you ‘less’ of a person.  Actually, it’s quite the opposite in that you become ‘more’.  We were once dead and at our lowest because of sin, but God lifted us up through Christ’s victory on the cross and resurrection.  When we submit to Christ, we become more – clothed in the new, lifted up in his victory, renewed in our identity to love God and to love others.

God’s authority is actually the answer for our lives – it brings us into his established order where our relationship with him and our relationship with others are restored.  Today, take time to submit to the Lord a particular area as you worship to ‘Believe’ (click here) by Hillsong.

-JH

 

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Day Two: Clothed in True and Proper Worship

Romans 12:1-2 (NIV)

1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Our consumer-driven society wants to pick and choose what one thinks is good or looks good.  Often the appeal to external appearance gets in the way of what truly matters on the inside.  True and proper worship is about giving one’s whole life in response to how God in his mercy picks and chooses us.  We no longer clothe our lives with what we think it should be or look like, rather it’s in worship that God clothes us with the best and changes us into who we are meant to be in his eyes.

Here is a video testimony (click here) from Chris Tomlin.

Today, let’s choose to be clothed in worship of Christ.  Pray and sing to ‘At the Cross’ (click here) by Chris Tomlin.  Receive and be renewed in God’s choosing of you and how he desires to clothe your life with his purpose.

-JH

 

 

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Day One: The New Era

Isaiah 41:16-21 (NIV)

16 This is what the Lord says—
he who made a way through the sea,
a path through the mighty waters,
17 who drew out the chariots and horses,
the army and reinforcements together,
and they lay there, never to rise again,
extinguished, snuffed out like a wick:
18 “Forget the former things;
do not dwell on the past.
19 See, I am doing a new thing!
Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness
and streams in the wasteland.
20 The wild animals honor me,
the jackals and the owls,
because I provide water in the wilderness
and streams in the wasteland,
to give drink to my people, my chosen,
21  the people I formed for myself
that they may proclaim my praise.

“The fundamental principles of the divine activity are changeless, but the outward shape of that activity alters with the changing needs of God’s people. We are meant to reflect on the past with gratitude and stimulated faith but not to allow it to stereotype our expectations from God. Here God affirms—in detail and with emphasis on the deadly efficiency of his deeds—that he was the God of the Exodus (vv.16-17), but he also asserts the wonderful freshness of his new act in prospect (vv.18-19).” [Geoffrey Grogan, Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Isaiah]

Let’s pray for a new era in our individual lives and church to receive ‘the wonderful freshness’ of God’s gospel and his new acts among us.  Ask God to stoke a greater flame in your heart for his praise as you worship to the song ‘Ready for You’ (click here) by Worship Central.

-JH

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Day Five: This is who “I am.”

I am a child of God (John 1:12).
I am part of the true vine,
and Christ’s life flows through me (John 15:1, 5).
I am a coheir with Christ, inheriting his glory (Romans 8:17).
I am a temple – a dwelling place – for God.
His Spirit and his life live in me (1 Corinthians 3:16; 6:19).
I am a part of the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:27).
I am a new person in Christ.
My past is forgiven and everything is new (2 Cor.5:17).
I am chosen of God, holy and dearly loved
(Colossians 3:12, 1 Thessalonians 1:4).
I am a child of light and not of darkness (1 Thessalonians 5:5).
I am only a visitor to this world in which I temporarily live (1 Peter 2:11).
I am a child of God,
and I will be like Christ when he returns (1 John 3:1,2).
I am born again in Christ, and the evil one – the devil – cannot touch me
(1 John 5:18).

Since I am in Christ, by the grace of God…

The sinful person I used to be died with Christ,
and sin no longer rules my life (Romans 6:1-6).
I am free from the punishment (condemnation) my sin deserves (Romans 8:1).
I have been given the mind of Christ.
He gives me his wisdom to make right choices (1 Corinthians 2:16).
I have been crucified with Christ and it is no longer I who live,
but Christ lives in me. The life I now live is Christ’s life (Galatians 2:20).
I have been bought out of slavery to sin (redeemed) and forgiven.
I have received his generous grace (Ephesians 1:7-8).
I have direct access to God through the Spirit (Ephesians 2:18).
I have been given a spirit of power, love and self-control (2 Timothy 1:7).

Prayer: Father, I am so thankful that I am who you say I am, completely belonging to You.  I choose to live today declaring these truths over my heart and mind no matter what comes my way.

-JK

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Day Four: “Divine Escape Key”

1 Corinthians 10:13  (NLT) The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure. 

Our God is incredibly generous, never stingy.  He does not withhold anything good from us. He remains faithful even when we are not.

He presence is always with you, as He promised.
He is with you right at this moment.

1 Corinthians 10:13 lets us know that temptation and trials will come to us all – we are to expect it. This is not to discourage us  – just the opposite.  We are not alone.

God promises that there is hope and comfort for us under all circumstances.  And He will not let us be tempted beyond what we can bear.

He  gives us a ‘divine escape key’  so that there is always a way out which He provides.  The Spirit living inside of us will guide us when we humbly yield our hearts and thoughts to Him.

This means that we can no longer say ‘I could not help myself or I could not resist.’  Remember that God knows what we can handle and promised that divine escape key!

Prayer: Father, may we proclaim the truth of victory we have in Christ. And that You will provide a way when there seems to be no way out.

-JK

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Day Three: “Your New Wardrobe chosen for you”

Colossians 3  (MSG version)

Your old life is dead. Your new life, which is your real life—even though invisible to spectators—is with Christ in God. He is your life.

And that means killing off everything connected with that way of death: sexual promiscuity, impurity, lust, doing whatever you feel like whenever you feel like it, and grabbing whatever attracts your fancy.

It wasn’t long ago that you were doing all that stuff and not knowing any better. But you know better now, so make sure it’s all gone for good: bad temper, irritability, meanness, profanity, dirty talk.

You’re done with that old life. It’s like a filthy set of ill-fitting clothes you’ve stripped off and put in the fire. Now you’re dressed in a new wardrobe. So, chosen by God for this new life of love, dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you: compassion, kindness, humility, quiet strength, discipline. Be even-tempered, content with second place, quick to forgive an offense.

And regardless of what else you put on, wear love. It’s your basic, all-purpose garment. Never be without it.

And cultivate thankfulness.

Prayer: Lord, thank you for the new wardrobe of love you have chosen for me and poured into my heart.  In joyful obedience, I want to live this Truth today.  Help me Lord, so that whatever I am doing today, all will be to the glory of You.  (1 Corinthians 10:31)

-JK

 

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Day Two: “Doing the Stuff: Submit to God, Flee and Resist”

1 Corinthians 10: 14 Therefore, my dear friends, flee from idolatry.

James 4:7 Submit yourselves, then to God.  Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

What if we sense we are going down the wrong path—toward something not good at all?

It may begin with life’s trials.  And, in not delighting to walk in the Spirit—shown by a lack of genuine worship and prayer, coupled with obstinate neglect of the Word and Church—our lives may succumb to temptations.

Then, sins; sinful thoughts and habits.  And, even more.

Prolonged patterns of behavior, and reluctant but strangely willing rejection of all that is good, truthful and beautiful. And, we, like the prodigal son, run from the Father.

We soon sense we are on the edge of a precipice; and, there are even skirmishes with the sinister.

Like the story we read earlier in chapter 10, we feel our bodies in danger of being “scattered in the wilderness”.

What do we do?  How do we get out?

How do we come back to love, peace, joy, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control?  How do we feel the embrace of our Father again?

The verses from 1 Corinthians and James give the clearest answer:

Submit to God.  Flee from idolatry.  Resist the devil (and he will flee from you).

If you sense any of the above today—from giving into temptations, and so on.

Then, Submit to God, Flee and Resist!

Prayer:  Lord Jesus, thank you that we were washed, sanctified and justified in your name (1 Corinthians 6:11).  Fill us with your Holy Spirit so that we may live powerfully, truthfully and beautifully for you.  We will submit and obey you and you only!  In Christ Jesus’ name.  Amen.

Here is a vintage video from Pastor John Wimber on “Doing the Stuff”
(3 minutes and 39 seconds) (Click here)

-JK

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Day One: “Just as I am, to Christ the Solid Rock”

1 Corinthians 10:3-4 They all ate the same spiritual food and drank the same spiritual drink; for they drank from the spiritual rock that accompanied them, and that rock was Christ.

Isn’t it wonderful that Jesus is the Lord, yesterday, today and forever?

In no uncertain terms, Apostle Paul declares that “the rock that accompanied” the Israelites in the time of Exodus was Jesus.

And, repeatedly (5 times!) in Deuteronomy 32, the Rock is identified as the LORD God.

3 I will proclaim the name of the LORD.
Oh, praise the greatness of our God!
4 He is the Rock, his works are perfect,
and all his ways are just.
A faithful God who does no wrong,
upright and just is he.

From the beginning of the creation and until now, “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven by which we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12 NIV/NLT)

So today we pray and sing,

“Just as I am, without one plea,
But that Thy blood was shed for me,
And that Thou bid’st me come to Thee,
O Lamb of God, I come! I come!”

“My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus Christ, my righteousness;
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly lean on Jesus’ name.”

“On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand;
All other ground is sinking sand,
All other ground is sinking sand.”

“Just As I Am” (click here)

“My Hope is Built on Nothing Less (On Christ the Solid Rock)”
(click here)

-JK

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