Archive for May 2021

Principles of Insight | Firm Foundation Bible Study

Firm Foundation Bible Study

Bryan Hudson, D.Min.

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2 Timothy 2:3, You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. 4 No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier. 5 And also if anyone competes in athletics, he is not crowned unless he competes according to the rules. 6 The hardworking farmer must be first to partake of the crops. 7 Consider what I say, and may the Lord give you understanding in all things.

Insight defined
The power or act of seeing into a situation
The act or result of apprehending the inner nature of things or of seeing intuitively
The capacity to gain an accurate and deep intuitive understanding of a person or thing.
A clear, deep, and sometimes sudden understanding of a complicated problem or situation:

Insight is inherently subjective.

Insight comes from one's own knowledge and lived experience. 
We only learn the value of an insight after we have time to reflect on it and view the outcomes

The Danger of Blindness

John 9:24, A second time they summoned the man who had been blind. “Give glory to God by telling the truth,” they said. “We know this man is a sinner.” 25 He replied, “Whether he is a sinner or not, I don’t know. One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see!” 26 Then they asked him, “What did he do to you? How did he open your eyes?” 27 He answered, “I have told you already and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you want to become his disciples too?” 28 Then they hurled insults at him and said, “You are this fellow’s disciple! We are disciples of Moses! 29 We know that God spoke to Moses, but as for this fellow, we don’t even know where he comes from.”

Religious authoritarianism (“because I said so”)
Go from bad to worse (continue to dig when in a hole)
Blind to God while talking about God  (religious arrogance)
Unwilling to acknowledge the obvious, empirical works of Jesus
Disrespecting people who won’t “fall in line”
Tone deaf (won’t “listen” to others)
Hanging on to dead people and old things

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A Place Called Forward: Commence & Invoke

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This is the season for graduation and commencement. It is also the time to honor educators who taught and nurtured students to prepare them for the next level of their education.

God has a lot to say about beginnings, new beginnings, dedications, commencements and invocations.
Graduation and commencement are the beginning of a new era or season for your life. We most often recognize this with graduation from high school and college. This truth is also connected to Imago Dei, the image of God within you. Only people, who are made in the image and likeness of God, have the power to commence, begin, or invoke.

We also have commencements, beginnings, and new beginnings in items such as marriage, new jobs, relocation, military training, becoming a registered voter, ministry licensing and ordination, and many other milestones that change your trajectory.

Commence and Invoke

1. Stand in your space. Earn and demand respect
1 Timothy 4:12 “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity.”

2. Commit Yourself to God 
Proverbs 16:3 “Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and your plans will succeed.”

3. Trust the Lord more than your own understanding. Honor the Lord
Proverbs 3:5-10 “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. Honor the LORD with your wealth, with the firstfruits of all your crops; then your barns will be filled to overflowing, and your vats will brim over with new wine.”

4. Work for God, not only for people
Colossians 3:23 “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.”

5. You were built for purpose
Ephesians 2:10 “For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

2021 College Graduates - Congratulations!
 
Your college degree is evidence of knowledge, personal organization for learning (no one FORCED YOU to do anything), as well as a commitment to inquiry, excellence, and lifelong learning. Your degree is neither a shortcut in life nor an emblem of privilege. You still have to become skillful in your field and earn the professional respect of people who know and do more than you.Don’t settle. #GoForward

To high school graduates: Good job, but THEY MADE you do it! You've just finished learning how to learn. Don't settle. #GoForward

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A Place Called Forward: From Crisis to Courage

 
There comes a time in any challenging situation, crisis, or pandemic, when you must choose courage over fear, wisdom over feelings, and facts over fantasies.
Israel faced that moment at the Red Sea which blocked their physical advance. In this moment, God instructed Moses to tell the people to, "Go forward!"
This remains God's instruction for us today!

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Isaiah 49:1, “Listen, O coastlands, to Me, And take heed, you peoples from afar! The Lord has called Me from the womb; From the matrix of My mother He has made mention of My name. 2 And He has made My mouth like a sharp sword; In the shadow of His hand He has hidden Me, And made Me a polished shaft; In His quiver He has hidden Me.” 3 “And He said to me, ‘You are My servant, O Israel, In whom I will be glorified.’”

God's plan for helping us realize Imago Dei continues through the process of birth. Everybody is born of a woman, and everybody is created at birth in the image and likeness of God. Your mother is proof of your Imago Dei.

Proverbs 30:11, There is a generation that curses its father, And does not bless its mother. 12 There is a generation that is pure in its own eyes, Yet is not washed from its filthiness.

Hebrews 2:5 For He has not put the world to come, of which we speak, in subjection to angels. 6 But one testified in a certain place, saying: “What is man that You are mindful of him, Or the son of man that You take care of him? 7 You have made him a little lower than the angels; You have crowned him with glory and honor, And set him over the works of Your hands. 8 You have put all things in subjection under his feet.” For in that He put all in subjection under him, He left nothing that is not put under him. But now we do not yet see all things put under him. 9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone.

“A little lower than the “angels”
In the Greek Hebrews 2:7, Angelos
In the Hebrew Psalms 8:5: Elōhîm (God)
You are made a little lower than God!


Genesis 3:15, “And I will put enmity (hostility) between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel.

Her “Seed” would eventually lead to the birth of Jesus. Distorting or destroying the DNA and Imago Dei in women and men hinders the destiny of their children, and the human race.

Mother’s Provision is Essential to Imago Dei

Josiah was eight years old when he became king….His mother’s name was Jedidah (2 Kings 22:1,)

Uzziah was sixteen years old when he became king…His mother’s name was Jecholiah of Jerusalem (2 Chr. 26:3)

Hezekiah became king when he was twenty-five years old….His mother’s name was Abijah(2 Chronicles 29:1)

Jotham was twenty-five years old when he became king…His mother’s name was Jerushah(2 Chronicles 27:1)

Amaziah was twenty-five years old when he became king…His mother’s name was Jehoaddan (2 Chronicles 25:1)

Paul spoke about the Imago Dei of Timothy’s mother & grandmother

2 Timothy 1:5, When I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Loisand your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also.

One of the first mandates and commands to God’s people related to preserving and maximizing Imago Dei
“Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.” (Exodus 20:12)

Reflection Questions:
1. What is the "matrix" of a mother?
2. What are your mother's special contribution to your DNA and Imago Dei?
3. Why is God so mindful of you and humanity?

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1 John 4:7  Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. 8 He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

God uses many activities to prepare people to receive the Gospel of Christ. For example, we cannot preach the Gospel to hungry people until we feed people. We cannot preach the Gospel to persons who have experienced injustice without dealing with the forces of injustice. Whatever injures Imago Dei (Image of God) in people hinders the heart and mind from receiving the word of God.

What was impossible, the love of God made possible.

John 3:16, For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

Romans 5:8, But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

We carry that same love. Love awakens the Imago Dei by connecting us with the nature of God, which is love.

“As we begin to treat each other with more love and empathy, it will not only change the world around us; it will also change us. As I have taken steps to promote racial justice, I have developed more endurance, discovered untapped wells of creativity, and experienced more joy than I ever expected. The journey of racial justice is itself transformative." (Jemar Tisby, How to Fight Racism, p. 7).

This love helps us not to stumble, or help others not to stumble.

1 John 2:10, He who loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no cause for stumbling in him.

Definition of stumble:

σκάνδαλον

Transliteration, skandalon - The Greek word for “stumble” means, “a trap, snare, a stumbling block, any impediment placed in the way and causing one to stumble or fall. Sounds like “scandal.” 

Think of the all the traps and snares that come when we don’t receive God’s love, or share His love with others.

Realizing Imago Dei within ourselves and helping others realize it, is a function of the love of God. 

First, it is that God loved us, followed by the truth that because He loved us that we can love one another.

Many believers have misunderstood that social work and social justice is also the work of God and a manifestation of love. 

Anything that restores Imago Dei in people is a work of God.

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