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Eternal Perspectives – Generations

ETERNAL GENERATIONAL MULTIPLICATION

God’s grace is always in the now. (Every day has its own trouble Mat 6:34 His mercies are new every morning Lam 3:22-23) The truth is a paradox where two opposing truths are equal in value and importance. The opposite truth to living in the now is focusing on eternity.  We are living in the now with our eye on eternity. This seems impossible and contradictory; how can you be in the now, and yet focused on eternity? Is eternity not in the future? No, eternity is now.

ETERNAL NOW

John 8:58 before Abraham was I am 

Rev 1:4 his who is, and who was, and who is to come 

Rev 1:8 Alpha & Omega, who is, who was, and who is to come 

2 Pet 3:8 with the Lord a day is like a thousand years and a thought years like a day

Exo 3:14 I am what I am

God is past, present and future all at the same time. “He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also He has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end.” Eccl 3;10-11

God declares the end from the beginning, Isa 46:10

THINK GENERATIONS

One of the practical ways of living in the now yet having your sight on eternity is making disciples.  Making disciples is the purest way of duplicating yourself, your life, your principles, and ways for generations.  Raising your children in the ways of the Lord.  Having children, and raising them is a form of discipleship.  God values family very highly.  The family is God’s way of maturing us into adulthood.  Physiologists and educators can list the adverse effects of a broken family, absent parents, child abuse due to bad parental role models and low-income family structures.  We can suppose that most of the social problems we experience today are because of a broken family unit.  This lack of being conscious of the following generation is clearly evident studying the Kings.  Not many leaders in the Bible succeeded to raise their kids in the fear of God.  Eli, the High Priest, became vile because he did not restrain them (1 Sam 3:13) Samuel’s children also did not serve God. They turned aside after dishonest gain, took bribes, and perverted justice. This speaks of a lack of godly character. (1 Sam 8:3)

Interesting that some of the righteous Kings in Judah did not follow their own father’s legacy but chose to go back and follow in David’s footsteps. And he did what was right in the sight of the LORD, and walked in all the ways of his father David; he did not turn aside to the right hand or the left. (2 Kings 22:2) There were also Kings who did not consider the legacy they left for their Children, knowing that their children would suffer the consequences of their father’s doings. So Hezekiah showed off all the riches of Judah to the son of King of Babylon and consequently received the damnation by the Prophet Isaiah that this very Kingdom will come and carry all these riches away.  He was only so happy that the judgment will not happen in his lifetime. So Hezekiah said to Isaiah, “The word of the LORD which you have spoken is good!” For he said, “Will there not be peace and truth at least in my days?” (2 Kings 20:15)

GENERATIONAL CURSES

Numbers 20:5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and — fourth generation of them that hate me;

GENERATIONAL BLESSINGS

Ps 12:7 Preserve the Word from generation to generation

Ps 78:3-8 Declaring and showing to the following generation the praises of the Lord, and his strength, and his wonderful works that he hath done.  — That they might set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments:

THE CULTURE WE INHABIT CREATES THE HABITAT FOR FUTURE GENERATIONS

While adults can switch religions, this is rare. The recent Pew Research study of the changes in world religions estimates that of the 8.1 billion believers in 2050, just 65 million (less than one percent) will have switched into their belief (chart).

People don’t pick their religion by throwing a dart at a grid of the hundreds or thousands of religions of history. They don’t even roll the dice and pick a religion based on its popularity at the moment (31% Christian, 23% Muslim, 15% Hindu, etc.). The religion of young adults is very strongly correlated with that of their culture.

In a groundbreaking study, Johns Hopkins University researchers followed nearly 800 Baltimore schoolchildren for a quarter of a century and discovered that their fates were substantially determined by the family they were born into.

“A family’s resources and the doors they open cast a long shadow over children’s life trajectories,” Johns Hopkins sociologist Karl Alexander says in a forthcoming book, The Long Shadow: Family Background, Disadvantaged Urban Youth, and the Transition to Adulthood.

http://hub.jhu.edu/2014/06/02/karl-alexander-long-shadow-research/

Only 33 children moved from birth families in the low-income bracket to the high-income bracket as young adults; if a family had no bearing on children’s mobility prospects, almost 70 would be expected. And of those who started out well off, only 19 dropped to the low-income bracket, a fourth of the number expected.

“The implication is where you start in life is where you end up in life,” Alexander said. “It’s very sobering to see how this all unfolds.”

CHURCH FAMILY GOD’s HABITAT

Fathers, Young Men and Children – 1 John 2:14-15

the older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good thingsTit 2:3

In church we create an habitat of extended family, where all the adults demonstrate the same godly values and character to the children.  Together reinforcing godliness in the children. Everyone sees every child as their child. We take collective care of another’s children.

We therefor worship expressively as a family. Children models and follow the parents in worshipping God. Children grow up in an environment where worship is normal, spontaneous and engaging.  God is intimately close in our worship and children who are sensory focused experience God in various ways in the meeting. People telling emotional testimonies being vulnerable is a powerful sign to children. The power of the spirit manifesting in meetings through healing, miracles, and the gifts of the spirit effects them deeply.

DECLARING GOD’s WORKS

We are sometimes more concerned as parents to see our children succeed in the goals and accomplishments of secularism, materialism, individualism, and selfish ambition.

Bill Johnson shares on Ps 78 and the importance of children experiencing the works and deeds of God, so that they will have hope and keep on serving God. He then also reveals how he and his wife deliberately exposed their kids to:

–    Family Church Life

–    The Supernatural

–    Poverty

We are not only called to provide for our children financially, once they are earning their own income they abandon God and church.  We should provide our children with an eternal rooted lifestyle.  Children learn through their experiences not their ears.  Prepare them for eternity.

In our journey with God we are very conscious of those who walked before us, and also those who are following.  I sent you to reap that for which you have not labored; others have labored, and you have entered into their labors.John 4:38

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Blogs

Learn to love and honor God's Judgments

Love and honor God’s Judgments

We live in an age where the following statement has never been more accurate and relevant; “everyone did what was right in his own eyes” Judges 21:25 We have more information available than ever yet people appear to be entirely ignorant of their lifestyle decisions, and it’s consequences. Our alienation from God and Truth has set us onto a course of deep darkness.
The sad truth though is that many Christians and believers are also just as ignorant of their behavior, habits, and incompetence in certain areas. This ignorance became very apparent to us in our recent encounters to Uganda. These are beautiful people, but they are totally ignorant of their incompetence in the workplace. Maybe in some way this is a good thing, for ignorance is bliss. Samuel Lwandasa, who have lived in the USA for more than 15 years relayed a little story to explain the problem with Africans. One man has five cows, he is very proud and feels like a wealthy man, because his neigbor only has two. Not realizing there are people who have more than thousand cows.
Against this backdrop of Earthly reality, I see in the scriptures an incredible hidden truth.
David loved God’s Judgments!
Psalms 18:22 For all His judgments were before me, And I did not put away His statutes from me.
Psalms 19:9-10 The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; The judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether. 10 More to be desired are they than gold, Yea, than much fine gold; Sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb.
Psalms 36:6 Your righteousness is like the great mountains; Your judgments are a great deep; O Lord, You preserve man and beast.
David sings a song on God’s Judgments, about how he loves it! Psalms 119:7, 13, 20, 30, 39, 52, 62, 66, 75, 102, 106, 108, 137, 156, 160, 164, 175
Loving Judgements is a difficult concept to comprehend at first; most children writing exams surely cannot agree that they love it! We as adults are not far behind; we’re just happy that we do not have to write them anymore. An interesting read on the subject is the study done by Justin Kruger and David Dunning.

People tend to hold overly favorable views of their abilities in many social and intellectual domains. The authors suggest that this overestimation occurs, in part, because people who are unskilled in these domains suffer a dual burden: Not only do these people reach erroneous conclusions and make unfortunate choices, but their incompetence robs them of the metacognitive ability to realize it. Across 4 studies, the authors found that participants scoring in the bottom quartile on tests of humor, grammar, and logic grossly overestimated their test performance and ability. Although their test scores put them in the 12th percentile, they estimated themselves to be in the 62nd. Several analyses linked this miscalibration to deficits in metacognitive skill, or the capacity to distinguish accuracy from error. Paradoxically, improving the skills of participants, and thus increasing their metacognitive competence, helped them recognize the limitations of their abilities. 1

I also remember a most interesting TED talk, we reviewed in BibleSchool class on Being Wrong by Kathryn Schulz. https://youtu.be/QleRgTBMX88 She explained how like the Wolf in the Road Runner animation, we run over the edge believing we can walk on air, to then suddenly realize we’re dead wrong. We all have moments like this, and it is what makes us human. The problem is when decision makers are wrong and want others to believe their error. Not knowing I am wrong, is possible one of our biggest handicaps.

Seek criticism from friends and peers

Elon Musk explains in an interview about Starting up a new business on how important it is to seek Criticism. 2 He calls it “rigorous self-analysis.” Obviously, you should ignore the ignorance of people that do not understand your cause and is just sowing doubt and unbelief. Learn and attract criticism from your friends, invite them to speak into your life. Make yourself vulnerable. Prayerfully extract the gold from every criticism, reproof, rebuke, admonishment, exhortation that comes your way. Say thank you, the person correcting you is taking a significant risk, and a show of courage to point out a possible error.
Peer review analyses: Because it ‘s hard for most professionals to recognize and improve on their weaknesses on their own, aviation has developed structured mechanisms of check questions to a relative peer. Like flight attendants checking each other on door closing procedures, Pilots going through checklists with Co-pilot etc, and flight crew awareness of problems reported to the captain. This system was only introduced after the fatal crash of Trans World Airlines (TWA) Flight 514, a Boeing 727 inbound from Columbus, Ohio, that was scheduled to land at Washington National Airport. The crew had flown a normally functioning Boeing 727 aircraft into a hill at an altitude of 1669 feet, just short of the hill’s peak of 1764 feet. The 85 passengers and seven crew members died in a horrific fiery crash 29 miles northwest of Dulles International Airport. Human error and Pilot’s misunderstanding each other was the cause of this accident.
How many people have suffered terrible harm because of the absence of correction in the offender’s life?

Elite athletes, musicians, and other top performers understand that excellence occurs through extensive study and practice, with constant feedback, and by adopting techniques and tools that have led to others’ success. For elite performers, this extends well beyond the formal training period. (An entire scientific discipline is devoted to this topic, as detailed by Ericsson 34.)

 Maybe this is why Weigh-less is so successful in helping people loose weight, the weekly weigh-ins.  The AA has sponsors.  Covenant eyes provide a accountability software program for Internet Porn Addicts, where you share your online traffic with a partner.

Take regular tests, to evaluate your ability, performance, and development.

Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you are disqualified 2 Corinthians 13:5. Doing inward self-analysis is fruitless and futile. Paul says that he does not even judge himself. 1 Corinthians 4:3. Judgment has to be external. Our own hearts are too deceptive. Jeremiah 17:9.

The Word and the Spirit is the perfect Judge

Jesus learned His judgment from the Father. Do not trust your own judgment, seek His judgment. John 5:30 I can of Myself do nothing. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is righteous because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me. John 7:24 Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment.” John 8:15-16 You judge according to the flesh; I judge no one. 16 And yet if I do judge, My judgment is true; for I am not alone, but I am with the Father who sent Me.
The more we Study the Word, the better we can judge. The Word is a discerner. Hebrews 4:12. Like not judging a matter by the first testimony, cross-examine and then make a conclusion. Proverbs 18:17.
David made several prayer requests to God to search Him, test Him and examine him. Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me, and know my anxieties; And see if there is any wicked way in me, Ps 139:23

The judgment of the Father

In recent times so many worship songs focus on loving God, and His amazing enduring love for us. Although this is important, yet the context of our relationship is always explained in terms of that of a disciple, a bond-slave, a child, a friend. Even our love is contextualized: if you love me you will obey my commandments. John 15:10 If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.
We do not fear His judgment because of His perfect love. 1 John 4:17-19 Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. We love Him because He first loved us. Love is made perfect through obedience. Hebrews 5:8.
Having God as our Father, does not only mean we are now protected, He will take care of everything. It means He will correct us, chastise, and rebuke us if nessasary.
And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaks to you as to sons:
“My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord,
Nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him;
For whom the Lord loves He chastens,
And scourges every son whom He receives.”
If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten? But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons. Hebrews 12:5-7
See Prov 15:31-32 Today’s scripture reading…

  1. “Unskilled and Unaware of It: How Difficulties in Recognizing One’s Own Incompetence Lead to Inflated Self-Assessments” Justin Kruger and David Dunning Cornell University  ↩︎
  2. Elon Musk https://youtu.be/NU7W7qe2R0A “Constantly seek criticism” 11minutes into video 
  3. Ericsson KA. The influence of experience and deliberate practice on the development of superior expert performance. In: , Ericsson KA. ed. The Cambridge handbook of expertise and expert performance. New YorkNew York: Cambridge University Press, 2006; 683–704. CrossRef
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Sermons

Discover the well of God’s Provision within

Spencer Johnson wrote a book called “who have moved my cheese”, giving us a beautiful metaphor of mice in a maze dealing with change. Someone decides to moved the cheese, the mice either continue to go look for the cheese at the same place and eventually die, or begin the journey to look for new cheese.

Since we have been dealing with calling and identity, we understood that we are not chasing riches, we appreciate and acknowledge the riches we already have, and live in obedience the workethic and values of Jesus. Riches and provision then seems to follow us.

A BIBLICAL METAPHOR FOR PROVISION
The well served as a place of rest and refreshment in a dry land. Wells just outside a city or village served as a meeting place for local women but also for travelers, where news would be passed along (1 Sam 9:11; compare 1 Sam 19:22) Wells play a significant role as an image of God’s provision (e.g., Judg 15:18–19; Deut 6:11; compare Neh 9:25)

At Qumran, the well and water were understood allegorically as God’s law and the faithful followers, respectively (CD 6:2–11). As an image in common life, wells were pictures of physical beauty (Song 4:15). Likewise, a dry or broken well served as a metaphor for disobedience. Because wells were the primary source of water, a dry well was a curse (Jer 14:3). They could be used as an image for faithlessness or disobedience (Jer 2:13; compare Prov 25:26). A well could also serve as a metaphor for death (Pss 55:23; 69:15; compare Rev 9:1).

JESUS OUR PERMANENT WELL
1 Cor 10:4

SOME LESSONS WE CAN LEARN FROM WELLS IN THE BIBLE
Jer 2:13 – seek a living well, and live eating from the tree of Life, not the tree of knowledge of good and evil. The second tree is like a broken cistern that does not keep the water. Religion is second-hand knowledge of God, Jesus came to be our eternal fountain. John 4
Judg 15:18–19 – supernatural provision, God supplied a water source supernaturally, like the rock in the desert. Ex. 17:1–7 God can thus give you a supernatural plan, strategy, for provision.
Gen 21:31 – oath, contract. Sometimes we need to form a alliance with someone for provision.
Gen 26:18 – dig old wells open again. At times we need to go and open an old well. Many internet startups, is simply modernizing an old industry, like Uber and AirBnB.
Gen 26:22 – Made room for me. Rehoboth Walk away from places of contention, until God makes room for you.

FINDING AND INDUSTRIALIZING A WELL
Once we have have received our well of provision, we need to look after it. Towns and cities came into existence from a well. Having a well alone is not enough, we need to begin to produce food, grow plants, build homes and markets. Fruit & Veg City Holdings is the lasrgest fresh produce retailer in southern Africa. It serves customers in South Africa, Namibia, Lesotho, Zambia and Mauritius. Brian Coppin founded Fruit and Veg City with his brother Mike. He related how they took the business from one relatively modest store in Kenilworth to a multi-brand giant in its sector within less than two decades.
Faithful Stewards – 1Pet 4:10
Faithful in multiplying – Mat 25:14-30

THE RIGHT BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVE ABOUT RICHES
There truly is no division between sacred and secular except what we have created. And that is why the division of the legitimate roles and functions of human life into the sa-cred and the secular does incalculable damage to our indi-vidual lives and to the cause of Christ. Holy people must  stop going into “church work” as their natural course of action and take up holy orders in farming, industry, law, education, banking, and journalism with the same zeal previously given to evangelism or to pastoral and missionary work.

The organized churches must become schools of spiritual discipline where Christians are taught how to own without treasuring (Matt. 6:21); how to possess without, like the “rich young ruler”, being possessed (Mark 10:22); how to live simply, even frugally, though controlling great wealth and power.

Possessions, then, are an extension of the body and of the self, for through them our will and character extend their range, just as they do through our tongue, our arms, and our legs. Our possessions increase the range within which we can reign in life by Christ Jesus and see spiritual power defeat the deadly reign of sin

“Get all you can; save all you can; freely use all you can within a properly disciplined spiritual life; and control all you can for the good of humankind and God’s glory” Dallas Willard

Excerpt From: “The Spirit of the Disciplines: Understanding How God Changes Lives” by Dallas Willard. Scribd.

Prov 1:32 the prosperity of fools destroys them.
Paul understood the riches found within first: Col 1:27
2 Cor 6:10 as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.
Phil 4:11-13 contentment comes from living in His strength

The rich young ruler, trusted and loved his riches and possessions.
We as believers trust in Him who makes rich and ads no sorrow 3 John 1:2

THE FINAL GOAL AND MANDATE
All nations come to his light
Mic 4:2; Mat 24:14; Isa 51:4; Isa 60:3
Glory cover the earth Hab 2:14

THE HEART OF THE MATTER
Giving is an issue of the heart. We give because this is who we are. God is a giver. Tithing is about consistent faithful giving, the church can rely on it. The law is like a tutor, giving your tithes teaches you to first give, before using your income. First fruits. It is an issue of the heart! We sometimes wait for the right moment to give, to feel like it, giving should be automatic. Your right hand not knowing what your left hand is doing. Mat 6:3 Generous giver. Ps 112:5; Prov 11:25; 22:9; 2 Cor 9:11; 1 Tim 6:18

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Stateman's Address

Discover the well of God's Provision within

Spencer Johnson wrote a book called “who have moved my cheese”, giving us a beautiful metaphor of mice in a maze dealing with change. Someone decides to moved the cheese, the mice either continue to go look for the cheese at the same place and eventually die, or begin the journey to look for new cheese.
Since we have been dealing with calling and identity, we understood that we are not chasing riches, we appreciate and acknowledge the riches we already have, and live in obedience the workethic and values of Jesus. Riches and provision then seems to follow us.
A BIBLICAL METAPHOR FOR PROVISION
The well served as a place of rest and refreshment in a dry land. Wells just outside a city or village served as a meeting place for local women but also for travelers, where news would be passed along (1 Sam 9:11; compare 1 Sam 19:22) Wells play a significant role as an image of God’s provision (e.g., Judg 15:18–19; Deut 6:11; compare Neh 9:25)
At Qumran, the well and water were understood allegorically as God’s law and the faithful followers, respectively (CD 6:2–11). As an image in common life, wells were pictures of physical beauty (Song 4:15). Likewise, a dry or broken well served as a metaphor for disobedience. Because wells were the primary source of water, a dry well was a curse (Jer 14:3). They could be used as an image for faithlessness or disobedience (Jer 2:13; compare Prov 25:26). A well could also serve as a metaphor for death (Pss 55:23; 69:15; compare Rev 9:1).
JESUS OUR PERMANENT WELL
1 Cor 10:4
SOME LESSONS WE CAN LEARN FROM WELLS IN THE BIBLE
Jer 2:13 – seek a living well, and live eating from the tree of Life, not the tree of knowledge of good and evil. The second tree is like a broken cistern that does not keep the water. Religion is second-hand knowledge of God, Jesus came to be our eternal fountain. John 4
Judg 15:18–19 – supernatural provision, God supplied a water source supernaturally, like the rock in the desert. Ex. 17:1–7 God can thus give you a supernatural plan, strategy, for provision.
Gen 21:31 – oath, contract. Sometimes we need to form a alliance with someone for provision.
Gen 26:18 – dig old wells open again. At times we need to go and open an old well. Many internet startups, is simply modernizing an old industry, like Uber and AirBnB.
Gen 26:22 – Made room for me. Rehoboth Walk away from places of contention, until God makes room for you.
FINDING AND INDUSTRIALIZING A WELL
Once we have have received our well of provision, we need to look after it. Towns and cities came into existence from a well. Having a well alone is not enough, we need to begin to produce food, grow plants, build homes and markets. Fruit & Veg City Holdings is the lasrgest fresh produce retailer in southern Africa. It serves customers in South Africa, Namibia, Lesotho, Zambia and Mauritius. Brian Coppin founded Fruit and Veg City with his brother Mike. He related how they took the business from one relatively modest store in Kenilworth to a multi-brand giant in its sector within less than two decades.
Faithful Stewards – 1Pet 4:10
Faithful in multiplying – Mat 25:14-30
THE RIGHT BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVE ABOUT RICHES
There truly is no division between sacred and secular except what we have created. And that is why the division of the legitimate roles and functions of human life into the sa-cred and the secular does incalculable damage to our indi-vidual lives and to the cause of Christ. Holy people must  stop going into “church work” as their natural course of action and take up holy orders in farming, industry, law, education, banking, and journalism with the same zeal previously given to evangelism or to pastoral and missionary work.
The organized churches must become schools of spiritual discipline where Christians are taught how to own without treasuring (Matt. 6:21); how to possess without, like the “rich young ruler”, being possessed (Mark 10:22); how to live simply, even frugally, though controlling great wealth and power.
Possessions, then, are an extension of the body and of the self, for through them our will and character extend their range, just as they do through our tongue, our arms, and our legs. Our possessions increase the range within which we can reign in life by Christ Jesus and see spiritual power defeat the deadly reign of sin
“Get all you can; save all you can; freely use all you can within a properly disciplined spiritual life; and control all you can for the good of humankind and God’s glory” Dallas Willard
Excerpt From: “The Spirit of the Disciplines: Understanding How God Changes Lives” by Dallas Willard. Scribd.
Prov 1:32 the prosperity of fools destroys them.
Paul understood the riches found within first: Col 1:27
2 Cor 6:10 as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.
Phil 4:11-13 contentment comes from living in His strength
The rich young ruler, trusted and loved his riches and possessions.
We as believers trust in Him who makes rich and ads no sorrow 3 John 1:2
THE FINAL GOAL AND MANDATE
All nations come to his light
Mic 4:2; Mat 24:14; Isa 51:4; Isa 60:3
Glory cover the earth Hab 2:14
THE HEART OF THE MATTER
Giving is an issue of the heart. We give because this is who we are. God is a giver. Tithing is about consistent faithful giving, the church can rely on it. The law is like a tutor, giving your tithes teaches you to first give, before using your income. First fruits. It is an issue of the heart! We sometimes wait for the right moment to give, to feel like it, giving should be automatic. Your right hand not knowing what your left hand is doing. Mat 6:3 Generous giver. Ps 112:5; Prov 11:25; 22:9; 2 Cor 9:11; 1 Tim 6:18

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Blogs

Discover what makes God happy – Multiplication

We often equate faithfulness with being steadfast, consistency, being dependable, reliable, dependable, loyal, true, trustworthy, devoted, truthful. Jesus equates faithfulness with something else – multiplication. Whatever God gives to us, He expects us to multiply and present it back to Him. John Bevere
The Parable of the 10 Virgins (Mat 25:1–13) does not reveal the meaning of “taking oil with you”, and thus many sermons suggested oil, referring to the Holy Spirit.  But you cannot buy the Holy Spirit.  It is evident that the parable’s focus is about being prepared for the coming of the Lord. These two parables are interrelated, both starting with “then the kingdom of God is likened” and both ending with God’s judgment.  The second parable explains the first.  The wise virgins were preparing for the unexpected delay of the bridegroom (v. 5). The best way we can prepare for the delay of his coming is, making disciples who can continue after our death. We need to duplicate our lives so that the flame of the gospel can keep burning. Freely we have received, freely we need to give. Mat 10:8
Read the rest of the portion of scripture; Mat 25:14-30
His goods – The money was His, and they were only stewards.  My farm worker who uses my car, cannot come and give me back my car, and demand a blessing for returning it.  We cannot twist God’s arm with our tithes and giving, to give us more. It is all His in the first place. He wants us to look after it, and make it grow, cultivate it.
Trade: to work, perform by labor, to do, produce, cultivate the earth. Gen 1:28
Mat 25:15 five talents The Greek text indicates an amount equal to 75 years’ wages thus the average years of a person’s live. The talents were of silver (money in Matt. 25:18 is argyrion, which means silver money). A talent weighed between 58 and 80 pounds. Again the average weight of a man.  Our lives should reproduce, multiply, and cultivate the righteousness, and God-given abilities we have received.  The old Protestant preachers would always ask: “what are you going to do with Christ you have received?”
Each according to their ability: we all have received intrinsic natural gifts talents, and influence.  Righteousness is receiving sonship; now God wants us to cultivate what we have received.
“you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed” The wicked and lazy servant did not know the character of hIs master.  This scripture in-plicately reveals the true meaning of the parable; God wants to reap a harvest where He has not sown, he first sown seed in us, not we sow, and reap a harvest exponentially for Him.
‘For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away”
25:29  have abundance, perisseuo  (per-is-syoo-oh); Strong’s #4052:  To superabound, have in excess, greatly surpass, excel. The word shows the generosity of God’s grace, giving assurance that faithful use of one’s talents and gifts sets the stage for one’s own advancement. The abundance of life is already within you.  Your provision is within you. Give yourself, serve others with your abilities and gifts, and provision will follow you.  He who chase after money never finds it.
Let’s look at Jesus’ example:
Jesus worked – John 5:17 what was His primary work?
Taught and disciplined 12 men – 2 Tim 2:20 and in the end He presented them back to God. Joh 17:4 He prays for them but eventually pray for their fruitful offspring. Joh 17:20 The seed principle is part of God’s nature, He created every living thing from this principle. Man cannot duplicate this original reproducing seed. The seed man creates cannot reproduce after its original kind. OMG Disciples are gifts. They are added by God in our lives, for a period to raise. Like, children.
Acts 10:38 – went about doing good
Works of faith – Multiplied bread Mat 15:32-39
The circuit of ministry – Mark 6:6 Then He went about the villages in a circuit, teaching.
He died – Joh 12:24 
Why did the servant hide the talent in the ground? He was afraid of losing it.  Scared of taking risks.  He did not believe in his own ability. He was also called lazy. This servant was only seeking an excuse to do nothing and not be productive.  Excuses are what keeps most people from doing: they try to justify their actions.  Excuses like: “evangelism is not my gift or calling, or I cannot sell anything.  We become good at anything we practice. We only need to start.  We all receive a mostly healthy body, but being lazy we do not cultivate it, we become over weight, and more an more restricted to do what that the body was made to do.  When we exercise we discover that the body is capable of much more, and we begin to do what we thought was impossible.
“Enter into the joy of the Lord” God is well pleased. We enter into Him being happy and delighted at our work, and faithfulness.  The end of both these parables concludes: those who did not multiply was not given access to enter the Kingdom of heaven.
We were naturally made to reproduce. Like a tree multiplying its fruit, it is doing what it was made to do.  It is natural for a healthy tree to reproduce.  Fear, laziness, and stubbornness is not natural.   God gave to each one according to their ability, and they had the means, they only had to obey.
May our eyes be opened to the riches that God has placed within us in Christ Jesus. Let us break loose of the lies and excuses that hold us back.  Let our lives be productive and multiply that what He has placed in us.

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Wie is my Navolger? Wie los jy in jou plek, wanneer jy weg is?

DiscipleshipWie is my Navolger?

PATTERN YOURSELVES after me [follow my example], as I imitate and follow Christ (the Messiah). 1 Cor 11:1 Wie is jou navolgers? Kan jy ook hierdie vers met oortuiging vir jou kinders en volgelinge sê? In terme van Leierskap sê John Maxwell; “If you leading and no one is following, you’re only taking a walk in the park.” Iemand het my eendag gevra: “What type of Christianity are your church creating?” Die vraag het lank by my gebly. Die vraag wat elke leier sekerlik sal moet antwoord aan die Here is; watse tipe Christene wil God hê? Die Woord is egter duidelik. Ons verheerlik God die meeste wanneer ons die meeste soos Jesus leef en handel! Mense wat nie meer rondgegooi word deur winde van lering nie, wat standvastig in hulle geloof kan bly staan selfs in tye van verdrukking, vervolging en lyding.  Mense wat onder die moeilikste omstandighede, nog steeds Jesus se geur versprei! Mense wat nie meer vasgevang is in gewoonte sondes nie, maar heilig en toegewy aan God lewe, sonder trots, ego en selfverheerliking.  Mense wat gesterf het in self, en daagliks hulle kruis opneem in Sy opstandingskrag! DIT IS DIE TIPE CHRISTENSKAP WAT GOD SOEK!

Van alle aktiwiteite, programme, byeenkomste, konferensies, wat die kerk ook al mag hou; as ons nie dissipels maak nie, is die groei en getalle van korte duur. Dis maklik om duisende mense te kry vir een byeenkoms, maar baie moeilik om een dissipel te maak wat uiteindelik op hulle beurt ook weer ‘n dissipel sal maak.

Volhoubare groei in die kerk is alleenlik moontlik wanneer elkeen lewe om die wêreld volgelinge te maak van Jesus!

DiscipleOns natuurlike navolgers is ons kinders.  Hulle sien, hoor, en voel ons elke beweging en modelleer hulle lewens volgens ons voorbeeld, en ook ons foute. Casting Crowns se liedjie “Slow Fade” sê dit mooi; “Be careful little feet where you go, for it’s the little feet behind you that are sure to follow”.
Jy maak dissipels sonder dat jy dit weet. Wat jy praat en leef, raak mense om jou. Sonder dat jy weet sien hulle of jou dade ooreenstem met jou uitsprake. Jesus leef in jou, en mense word outomaties na Hom toe aangetrek. Skinder is niks anders as dissipels maak van jou storie nie.  Deur jou offense te deel, en mense te kry om simpatie te hê, wen jy dissipels vir jou ‘cause’, oor hoe verontreg jy is. Ons is geroep om mense te inspireer om ook te wil hê wat ons het – JESUS die Christus!
Die groot “Commission” Jesus se opdrag aan sy dissipels was: “Go out and train everyone you meet, far and near, in this way of life” (Message) of “Daarom moet julle na elke volk op aarde toe gaan en hulle my volgelinge maak” (Lewende Bybel) Mat 28:19 Dis die enigste volhoubare groei in die Kerk. Jou redding is nie net vir jouself nie, God wil deur jou die Wêreld raak met Sy genade en manier van lewe.

Jesus is ons missie, visie en algehele rede waarom ons bestaan.

Ons geloofspad met Jesus is ‘n reis van groei na volwassenheid in Hom. Hierdie groei kan nie sonder die medewerking van die liggaam plaasvind nie. (Efe 4:11-16) Dit is belangrik om ook te besef dat dissipelskap die beste werk binne die liggaam, want ons skiet almal tekort, mense faal ons, dit is ongesond dat leiding net van een persoon afkomstig is. Binne die raamwerk van familie, en die dinamiek van familie, en juis die diversiteit van verskillende rolle, ouderdomme en persoonlikhede wat optimale groei meebring.  Die dissipelskap verhouding is net vir ’n tydperk, nie vir ’n leeftyd nie. Jesus het net 2,5 jr gehad om sy dissipels gereed te kry om oor te neem.

Lewensfase Behoefte Volgeling se rol Leier se rol
Geboorte Voorbeeld en rigting gee Gehoorsaamheid Inspireer
Kleuter Onvoorwaardelike Liefde, en beskerming Waarheid Modelleer
Jongmens Vorming van identiteit en vryheid om op eie te ontwikkel Nederigheid Afrigter
Volwassene Vennootskap en vriendskap Samewerking Vennoot

Terwyl ons almal in Hom opgroei na volwassenheid, hardloop ons ons eie wedloop. Petrus wou weet wat van Johannes? Jesus antwoord hom: “As Ek wil hê dat hy in die lewe moet bly totdat Ek weer kom, is dit nie jou saak nie. Volg jy My!” Dis nog een van die paradokse van die Evangelie: Ons kan nie sonder mekaar nie, maar elkeen hardloop volgens sy of haar eie pas.  Ons oë is nie op mense gevestig nie, maar op Jesus die voleinder van ons geloof. (Heb 12:2)
Harvester is by uitstek ‘n verhouding georiënteerde gemeente, mense stap nie noodwendig sommer net in ‘n diens in en word deel nie. Groei vind veral binne die raamwerk van verhoudinge en spesifiek die dissipelskap-verhouding plaas.  Ons hou tans verskeie “oes” (Harvest Events) waar mense kom besoek, dit is belangrik dat elke medewerker in die geloof wakker is in die gees om konneksie te maak met hierdie ‘soekers’. As volwasse gelowige kom jy nie meer na die diens net om te kom ontvang nie, jy kom om mense te bedien met dit wat jy in Christus ontvang het.
andyDISSIPELSKAP 101
–   Kom gereeld bymekaar. Weeklikse saambid, Bybelstudie, gesprekke, berading, uitreike en bediening aan ander.
–   Die ideale dissipelskap groep is 3 mense.  Dit verplaas die fokus van een persoon as die leidende figuur, na die hele groep. Dit maak die mees volwasse lid ook ‘n deelnemer. Daar is meer veiligheid, volhoubaarheid, balans en krag in die verhouding van drie as net twee.
–  Die kleingroep bring intieme interpersoonlike vertroue en oopmaak mee, sodat Jesus se lig verandering kan bring deur die krag van die Heilige Gees.  Onbybelse geloofsoortuigings wat mense gevange hou, kan aangespreek word soos die die Here dit na voorskyn bring. Dissipelskap is die proses, waar die Here alles wat nie Jesus is nie wegsny.
–  Beweging is lewe en groei: Deur passief net dienste by te woon, lei tot stagnasie. Deur aktief te begin bedien, van jouself te gee, en mense se groei op jou hart te dra bring jou eie groei mee.  Ons Christenskap kan nie net oor ons eie belange gaan nie, dus juis in jou uitgee dat jy weer vol word. Dis in dien, dat jy bedien word. Dis in gee, dat jy vol word! Ha nee, spectators!
AKSIES:
1.  Vas en Bid oor dissipelskap: Laat die Here self vir jou sleutels gee en lei hoe om te begin.
2.  Lys die name van wie die Here na jou toe gestuur het om te help en te mentor. Identifiseer jou dissipels, hulle is na jou toe gestuur, en jy na hulle. “Divine Connections” Dink aan Cornelius en Petrus.
3. Verskillende tipe en vlakke van dissipels. (3, 12, 70, skare) Wie is jy besig om op te rig, om te doen wat jy doen? Aan wie gaan jy oorgee? Wat los jy agter, en wat vat jy saam na jou dood? Siele is ’n ewige kommoditeit.
4.   Kry ’n tyd wanneer jul bymekaar kan kom. As jy net 2.5 jr gehad het om iemand alles te leer wat jy weet, met watse dringendheid sou jy aandag gegee het aan die taak?
 

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Discover God’s heart and blueprint for family

God intended family since the beginning.  God made Adam and saw that he was alone, and needed a helpmate. He made Eve. Then they had children, obeying the first command to multiply and fill the earth.  (Gen 1:28) This rule of multiplication is currently the primary method how Islam is intending to conquer the world. They do not integrate, learn the language, abandon their traditions and clothing. Yet they are now residing over the world, and expanding through population growth percentage of 3.1 children per family against the 2.1 rate of Europe and America. See the following article on this subject: http://brie-hoffman.hubpages.com/hub/Muslim-World-how-muslims-will-take-over-the-world-via-population-growth Although this may be true, originally God’s intention is to cover the earth with His Glory, through godly and righteous families.
The first family serves as an example of the struggles of family too.  When Adam’s children sacrificed to God, Abel’s sacrifice was approved but not Cain’s.  He murdered his brother out of jealousy, anger and offense.  (Gen 4:5-6) God’s answer to Cain is interesting: (v7) “If you do well, will you not be accepted? If you do not do well, sin crouches at your door, its desire is for you, but you must master it.”  Cain’s heart was exposed by God rejection of his sacrifice.  “Am I my brother’s keeper?” (Gen 4:9) God is not interested in our sacrifices, but our mercy, readiness to help those who are in trouble. (Mat 9:13 AMPLIFIED) Family is the primary breeding ground for offenses to happen, when we master it, we will be able to master life.

Multiplying was the easy part, how to multiply spiritually and have the children walk in the precepts of the parents seems to be the difficult part.

The way God’s family is constituted is through faith and obedience. God called Abraham from the Chaldeans living in Ur, to become His family. (Gen 12:1; Rom 4:5)  Abraham is the father of faith.  (Rom 3:30; 4:1-2; 4:16; Heb 6:15) His name Abraham – Means Father of many nations.  Essensially the story of the birth of a nation, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is a family story.
A Spiritual Family – Birthed by Supernatural means
Sarah, Rachel, and Rebekka all was barren, and God had to miraculously open their womb to be able to bare children.  The Covenent blessing on Abraham since the beginning was towards a generational legacy of families. (Gen 12:1-3)  None of their firstborn by blood received the covenant blessing.  Abraham’s first born was Ismael.  But Isaac born of Sarah received the promise. (Gen 17:18-21) Isaac’s firstborn was Essau, yet Jacob deceives his father and received the blessing. (Gen 27:20-29) Jacob’s first born was Rueben and did not received a blessing: “You will not excel” (Gen 48:3-4) Reuben’s immorality with his father’s concubine Bilhah (the mother of his brothers Dan and Naphtali) is recorded in Genesis 35:22. Joseph received the blessing born as the oldest son with Jacob’s wife Rachel. Yet later Benjamin received the tribal blessing.    Joseph firstborn son was Manasseh yet Jacob crossed his hands and blessed Ephriam. (Gen 48:1-20)
The Jewish system of governance is called a Theocracy where God is the King.  It was not God’s original plan that Isreal should have an earthly king. (1 Sam 8:1-21) Even when Samuel warned them of the consequenses: 19 Nevertheless the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel; and they said, “No, but we will have a king over us, 20 that we also may be like all the nations, and that our king may judge us and go out before us and fight our battles.”  It was never God’s desire that His people be enslaved as subjects of a King.  God’s plan is family!
When God apointed the first King of Isreal He chose the King in the way man would chose. a mighty man of power. And he had a choice and handsome son whose name was Saul. There was not a more handsome person than he among the children of Israel. From his shoulders upward he was taller than any of the people. (1 Sam 9:1-2) When Dawid was the youngest son of Jesse, and yet he received the appointment as the next king of Israel, because of his faith and relationship with God. .  (1 Sam 16:13)
God wants us to be His children, people of faith, walking according to his statutes and will.  This is why some people who would never have been accepted into the Kingdom are included because of their faith, like Boaz and Ruth, and their son Obed.  Hagar the prostitute, who hid the Israelite Spies, and gave them a way of escape.  The Bible story and history, is a story of faith heroes.  (Heb 11)
God values family very highly.  Family is God’s way of maturing us into adulthood.  Physiologists and educators can list the negative effects of a broken family, absent parents, child abuse due to bad parental rolemodels and poor family structures.  We can suppose that most of the social problems we experience today is because of a broken family unit.  This is clearly evident studying the Kings.  But not many leaders in the Bible succeeded to raise their kids in the fear of God.  Eli the High Priest became vile because he did not restrain them (1 Sam 3:13) Samuel’s children also did not serve God. They turned aside after dishonest gain, took bribes, and perverted justice. Which speaks of a lack of godly character. (1 Sam 8:3)
Interesting that some of the rightous Kings in Judah, did not follow their own father’s legacy but chose to go back and follow in David’s footsteps. And he did what was right in the sight of the Lord, and walked in all the ways of his father David; he did not turn aside to the right hand or to the left. (2 Kings 22:2) On there were Kings who did not consider the legacy they left for their Children, knowing that their own children would suffer the consequences of their father’s doings. So Hezekiah showed off all the riches of Judah to the son of King of Babylon and consequently received the damnation by the Prophet Isaiah that this very Kingdom will come and carry all this riches away.  He was only so happy that the judgment will not happen in his lifetime. 19 So Hezekiah said to Isaiah, “The word of the Lord which you have spoken is good!” For he said, “Will there not be peace and truth at least in my days?” (2 Kings 20:15)
This very same attitude pertains to most Africans in African culture.  They are more concerned with the dead, and their forefathers, than to try to make it easier for the immerging generation.  In African culture the children is responsible for the parent. Paying huge sums for Lobola as a wedding gift to the father.  In Western Culture the father pays the huge amount for the wedding.  Both are extremes.  God the father being our example how He raised Jesus into adulthood through dissipline and obedience to earthly parents, in a small close-knit community and when He was ready at the age of thirty release to him the powers of His Kingdom.  The end-goal of God’s view of family is maturity. The husband should, like Christ, present his wife blameless and perfect to God, thus meaning mature. (Eph 5:27) This is mostly done by example and following, obeying and submitting to Jesus.  Wives should instruct the younger, through wisdom, example, purity and reverence.  (1 Tim 5:2; Tit 2:3)
The eternal Church God’s design for family.
The Church: The Spirit-filled community of salvation History – The church is the receiver and fulfilment of the Kingdom and the message of salvation.  (Mat 16:18) Church is seen as a many membered active body of believers who each have an important role to play. (Rom 12:3-8; 2:19-22) Although leaders are important in the church, and should be respected (Heb 13:7-8, 17) the active ministry and participation of the church as a whole is imperative. The apostles do not see leaders above people, but among the people. Leading by example (Acts 18:3; 20:33–35) This is why the fivefold ministries are given, to equip the saints for their ministry.  (Ephesians 4:11) Church is seen as one body, filled with one spirit, with one father, one baptism and one faith. (Eph 4:4-6)
God’s mold for Family is church.  The word church (ecclesia) is made up of two root words: ek – out of and kaleo – called. Thus a direct translation of church would be His called out ones. But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a dedicated nation, [God’s] own purchased, special people, that you may set forth the wonderful deeds and display the virtues and perfections of Him Who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light. (1 Pet 2:9)
 
Discerning the body of Christ
Our problem is not that there is to many churches, nor that we differ so much, but we do not discern one another as brothers of one family. (Eph 4:1-6) The Father determines the children. No one comes to the father if He doesn’t draw them. (Joh 6:44)

Our job is not to choose our family, but except the ones He has adopted into our family.

When Jesus came to the Earth He needed a body; today He still needs a body. (Heb 10:5) Of which He is the head. (Eph 1:22-23) There are different kind of bodies – the body both of men or animals – a dead body or corpse the living body of animals – the bodies of planets and of stars (heavenly bodies) – is used of a (large or small) number of men closely united into one society, or family as it were; a social, ethical, mystical body so in the NT of the church – a gathering of citizens called out from their homes into some public place, an assembly – an assembly of the people convened at the public place of the council for the purpose of deliberating the assembly of the Israelites – any gathering or throng of men assembled by chance, tumultuously in a Christian sense – an assembly of Christians gathered for worship in a religious meeting the assembly of faithful Christians already dead and received into heaven – a company of Christian, or of those who, hoping for eternal salvation through Jesus Christ, observe their own religious rites, hold their own religious meetings, and manage their own affairs, according to regulations prescribed for the body for order’s sake – those who anywhere, in a city, village, constitute such a company and are united into one bod – the whole body of Christians scattered throughout the earth.
In summery then we can say that there are various expressions of the Body of Christ.  Small groups, house churches, large gatherings, ministries towards a specific need, whenever we actually get together in His name He manifest Himself amongst us.  (Mat 18:20) It is thus important that we do not neglect these meetings. (Heb 10:25)
Question: Can I be a Christian without joining the church?
Answer: Yes, it is possible. It is something like being:
A student who will not go to school.
A soldier who will not join an army.
A citizen who does not pay taxes or vote.
A salesman with no customers.
An explorer with no base camp.
A seaman on a ship without a crew.
A businessman on a deserted island.
An author without readers.
A tuba player without an orchestra.
A parent without a family.
A football player without a team.
A politician who is a hermit.
A scientist who does not share his findings.
A bee without a hive.
Everyone knows about the old codger who lives to be 100 and cavalierly attributes his longevity to booze, black cigars, beautiful women-and never going to church. According to Dr. George W. Comstock of Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health, that kind of impious longevity may be the exception, not the rule. In studies of the relation of socioeconomic factors to disease in the population of Washington County, Md., Comstock and his colleagues made an incidental but fascinating discovery. Regular churchgoing, and the clean living that often goes with it, appear to help people avoid a whole bagful of dire ailments and disasters. Among them: heart disease, cirrhosis of the liver, tuberculosis, cancer of the cervix, chronic bronchitis, fatal one-car accidents and suicides.  The most significant finding was that people who go to church regularly have less arteriosclerotic heart disease. The annual death rate from such disease was about 500 for every 100,000 persons among weekly churchgoers, nearly 900 per 100,000 among “less than weekly” attendees. As for bronchitis, Comstock is at a loss to explain the relationship. (Maybe all that hymn singing helps clear the tubes. ) In any case, he has a name-or at least a nickname-for the whole phenomenon, which he humorously calls the “Leo Durocher” syndrome. “Nice guys,” concludes the good doctor, “do seem to finish last.”
Physician Steward Wolf in Roseta Pennsylvania has discovered this same phenomenon.  This little community is a copycat mirror-image of the original Hometown in Italy, the street names, building style, and business names are all the same, even the very unique Italian dialect.  The power of this unique community lies in their sense of family. Children grow up without fear of finding a job, for somewhere in the community someone will take you in.  Up to three generations lived in one home. They visited one another regularly, cooking for one-another. They had a strong base of the extended family arranged naturally in clans.  The have huge gatherings of eating and feasting together. They look out for another, and have a sense of responsibility and accountability to the greater whole. The end result? They have a very low rate of any heart decease.  It is not the food they eat, that effect this result, rather it is the way they operate as a family.  (From Outliers Pg 3-11, Malcolm Gladwell) In this book Gladwell actually proofs that our individual genius, is never because of our own ability. It is the people’s abilities around us that makes us great!
For the sake of family
“For the sake of family” is often heard.  The needs of the family is more important that that of my own.  In the African context this emphasis can also be abused, where it becomes impossible to rise above the cultural downforce of the community.  In the west we have a too high emphasis on the individual, in the east the individual disappear in the whole.  In the biblical context, God chose a man, and effects the group through that man.  So it is not what man wills, or what the group wills, but what God wills. Both man and group ought to submit to the will, and way of God.

  • Our suffering is for the sake of the church, see Paul’s example. Colossians 1:24 I now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up in my flesh what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ, for the sake of His body, which is the church.  When you receive public correction, receive it for the sake of the others present, so that all can learn and fear.  (1 Tim 5:20)
  • The operation of the gifts of the spirit is not for the benefit of self, but for the building up of the body.  (1 Cor 14:12).
  • We give up our own family for the sake of the Kingdom family. (Luk 18:29)
  • Jesus prays for his disciples, but also for the following generation that will come. (Joh 17:20-21)
  • Paul is torn between the desire to be with the Lord, yet for the sake of the church he remains. (Phil 1:23-24)

Often in the OT whole generations is removed by God, to cherish and protect the lineage of faith and obedience.  This is also why God hates divorce. (Mal 2:15) God is seeking a godly offspring! There is no greater attack against the child’s future faith in God, than when their parents divorce.  On the other hand, there will be much less divorces if we remain faithful for the sake of family!
Becoming  part of God’s family.
We need to be part of a church, right! Yes! But being part of the right body is vital! In studying Kings and chronicles we soon discover the power of leadership, and how it influenced the prosperity of the people.  This is how God has made us as humans, we follow naturally after leadership. Therefor the strict warning in James 3:1 My brethren, let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive a stricter judgment. The following verses in chapter 3 of James deal with the power of the tongue, how it steers the ship. I believe leaders determine the direction, and measure of maturity in a local church.  You cannot belong to a local church and really grow beyond the level of the local leadership’s growth, without being very frustrated.
We all desire to be led. We need leaders. We hate them or love them, but we do not want their job.  Life is hard, and getting by with all the daily chores is not always easy. Thus we do not want to make the big decisions, we do not want that responsibility.  Some of us however, are made exactly for that purpose; we thrive on these difficult challenges. This is how God has made us.  Some people like to lead and some follow.  Moreover we should be able to balance leadership and submitting like breathing, for leaders who cannot submit suffocate their people, and people who never take initiative frustrate leaders.  We all must learn a measure of leadership, and submitting in all areas of life.
On regards to big groups of people, we need godly leaders. This is the message of Kings & Chronicles, how did man fare with God not being their king, but man?  When the Kings served and obeyed God’s commands and will the people prospered.  When the King made himself God, and had the people obey him, they entered destruction.
Who do you chose to follow and why? 
The people of Israel sought a righteous King, and followed Jerobeam.  This generation of people of Israel ended 19 kings later being scattered all over the world. In 400 years none of these Kings served or obeyed God. Jerobeam created his own counterfeit religion, temples and priesthood.  The people, who remained faithful to God’s word and promise to David, saw 8 Kings serving God, and the birth of the Messiah.
Some people followed Moses, but others were easily swayed to follow Aaron and Mirriam, who began to question Moses Leadership.  Num 12:1-4 There was many occurrences of such rebellion under Moses Leadership.
Following a Reformer.
The Biblical criteria we should use to determine who we ought to follow are:

  1. Do they have a personal relationship with God?
  2. Do they have a prophetic mandate to lead?
  3. Do they seek to keep reforming according to the standard of God’s Word? Do they obey the Word?
  4. Does their personal life line up with the word?
  5. Do they keep to the original mandate?

Discipleship in family context
Whenever we conduct church outside of the parameters of family, we enter into trouble and eventually in error.  Family is eternal.  You cannot resign from a family.  You cannot leave your house. You eternally belong. Even your earthy family has this power over you, you can change your name, but in DNA and genetics you’re still connected.  This is how God intended family to be.  We changed His order.
The fact that we go in and out, connect and leave is at the root of why some of our evangelism efforts are failing. Jesus did not only preach to the crowds, He made family, taking His disciples with Him. We preach and leave, not willing to lay down our lives for a community, to become fathers and older brothers that will lead them out of darkness into his marvelous light. (1 Pet 2:9) The true heart of the apostolic is thus to be fathers to the churches. (Gal 4:19; 1 Cor 4:15; ).  The context of the true church is also set, within the context of family. How can you take care of His church, when your own family is ruins? (1 Tim 3:5) Church history is full of stories where leaders forsake their own families, and it lead to all kinds of error and misconduct.
God’s protection plan for ministry is family! Getting to busy for family, then you’re too busy for God.  Whenever we neglect family and move without the unity of family we are in danger. Again God’s design for family is not just about being a family by name of bloodline, but to experience the same unity that exist in the Godhead.  When a family serves God together, obey God, and live for His glory it makes things easy and natural. We do not have to find unnatural means to protect and care, grow or empower. It all happens naturally without even paying attention to it.  He works is through all the various dynamics within family.  Our only job should be to preserve the Unity!

At the end we all have to give up our own cultures, and traditions. We need to be reformed in our religion,

until He becomes the sum-total of all things.  Until we mature into His image.

The negative of family
Like everything God gave as a provision the enemy distorts into a curse.  So also a family without God becomes a stronghold, a satanic confederacy against the purposes of God. Families carry from one generation to the next the disobedience of the one generation to the next.  Ungodly traditions of man are not questioned but obeyed blindly. This is why we need reform. We need to a systematic relentless determination to keep on allowing God to reform our thinking through the Spirit and the Word.
The Blessing of a spiritual family.
It is much easier to pray with someone than praying alone, do evangelism together than doing it alone, praising God together than singing by yourself. Corporate anointing makes serving God easier.  It is our own ego and self centered nature that seeks to be separate, be different, unique, following my way, seeking my own new path.  It is humbling to follow, to first take directions from men who aren’t perfect.  Jesus did this for 90% of his entire life. Obeying earthly parents.  How do you want to obey God, if you cannot obey your parents, your boss, the law? Surely we need to be alone at times; Jesus also made time for being alone with God, in order to be ready to engage with man in a godly manner.
The Three Chair principle – the power of experience
In conclusion we need to look into the generational regression effect.  Like I have shown in the beginning of this chapter, not many fathers were able to translate their anointing and zeal for God to the next generation.
David served God with all his heart, and was called a friend of God. Yet although Solomon did serve God initially he eventually compromised and lost his way. His son Rehabeam did not serve God at all.  We see the same progression with Josua. Me and my house will serve God. (Jos 14:15) The next generation of Elders also served God (Jos 24:31; Judg 1:7) consequently the next generation did evil in the sight of the Lord and did not even enquire from Him anymore.  (Judg 1:10)
Bruce Wilkerson writes about this phenomenon in much detail in his book. “The three chairs Principle”
The question is: Where did David fail to kindle the same kind of zeal for God he possessed, to Solomon? There are surely many answers, like his lack of discipline, not spending enough time with his children etc.
I believe that the most important aspect that we should remember about the next generation, is what this whole blog is about. God’s family is supernaturally reproduced.

In God’s family there can be No Spectators!

Conditions to enter His Kingdom and Family
Luk 17:20 pharasees “the kingdom does not come with observation”
Acts 14:22 We must through many tribulations enter the Kingdom
Joh 3:3 Unless you born again you will not see the kingdom
Luk 18:29 Give up family for the sake of the kingdom of God
Luk 6:20 Blessed are the poor for yours is the Kingdom of God
Luk 18:24 Hard for the rich to enter
Mat 5:20 except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven
Matthew 7:21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven but he who does the will of God.
No matter how you receive the Word (Voice) of God, whether through Bible study, some supernatural experience, visions, dreams, or encounters it all boils down into one thing – Doing it! Obedience to the will, voice, and instructions of God is the key to Kingdom living!
First hand encounters from the tree of Life, instead of eating from the tree of knowledge of good and evil.  The NT way of the spirit to transfer knowledge is through impartation – not through words only but through power.  (1 Cor 4:20) It is form this first-hand basis that the apostles conducted their ministry. (1 Joh 1:1) We have seen with our own eyes, hearing with our own ears.
There is no other way. Jesus is the door. You have to go through Him personally, by surrendering your life to Him. (Mat 16:24) No one can do it for you. Your parents can show you the way, by example and teaching but you have to go in and experience Him yourself.