Tuesday, October 29, 2013

BIBLE STUDY WEEK 2 (10/22/13)

 

BIBLE STUDY

"The Prayer of Jabez" BIBLE STUDY

(By Bruce Wilkinson)

WEEK 2

(10/22/13) 

 

 

Subject:                                It was a Prayer for PROSPERITY.                                          

                                                "And enlarge my border."

 

 

Scripture:                           I Chronicles 4:10 (AMP)

                                                "Jabez cried to the God of Israel, saying, Oh, that You would bless me and enlarge my border, and that Your hand might be with me, and You would keep me from evil so it might not hurt me! And God granted his request."                                        

 

This week we'll Discover:

 

What territory means.

Why God wants you to have more of it.

How other Bible characters enlarged their territory.

How God arrange divine encounters between you and others.

What might be fencing you in on a small patch of opportunity.

How to break through to a larger life every day.

 

Keys:

1. Jabez was ambitious, but in the right attitude.

a. Some think that perhaps he had not conquered all his inheritance from

the enemy.

 

b. Some think this means the area or scope of his work and service for the Lord. "Lord help me to do a greater work for thee"

 

2. His ambition was not covetous where he let his desires crush everything that is good and ignore God and the way that is right.

 

a. But he prays to God to help him extend his possessions, to increase his

wealth, and to advance in influence.

 

3. We should pray freely to God about our plans and ask him to bless us. a. To pray to God about our common human affairs is the best way we can be assured of winning them and keeping the right spirit toward whatever we may attain.

 

4. We don't know if he was a husbandman, a warrior, a ruler, or a scribe. We don't know whether he was praying for increased authority or territory. But it's fitting, that we ask the Lord to enlarge the field of our activities. We may ask the Lord to make us a blessing.

 

a. To those in spiritual darkness. Matt. 5:14-16; Acts 13:47; 26:18

b . To the needy. James 1: 27

c. To the weak. Gal. 6:2; I Cor. 8:13

d. To all men. Gal. 6:10

 

God has plans to help you reach across boundary lines and touch lives for Him. I call them Jabez Appointment. They occur when you respond to what seems to be a divinely arranged encounter . . . and you invite God to act.  Often, your appointment starts with a simple question: How may I help you?

 

Remember Philip's roadside opportunity? (Acts 8:30-31)

 

"Then Philip ran up to the chariot and heard the man reading Isaiah the prophet. "Do you understand what you are reading?" Philip asked.  "How can I," he said, "unless someone explains it to me?" So he invited Philip to come up and sit with him."

 

 

 

Born For More:

If your circumstances often seem ordinary and your horizons small, you're going to love the next part of the Jabez prayer.

 

For his second request, Jabez pleaded for more territory.  With more influence and more responsibility, Jabez could make a greater mark for the God of Israel.  But he was stuck on a tiny patch of opportunity.  So he asked for more.

 

As you enjoy more and more of God's blessings in your life, your heart will overflow, touching more and more people for Him.  Most people like their lives in a passive, reactive mode; Jabez lived in a healthy, proactive mode. Jabez stepped forward and boldly asked God to enlarge his borders and extend his influence.

 

Do you believe that God wants you to have more and do more for Him? I do.  But asking for a larger life goes far beyond the size of your property, as you're about to find out.

 

Depending on the Bible version you're reading, the word territory in I Chronicles 4:10 may also be translated as borders or coast.  In Jabez's time, the more land you had, the more provisions, security, and influence you enjoyed.  I believe that Jabez desired to enlarge his territory because as an honorable man he wanted more opportunity to make a mark for the God of Israel.

 

Like Jabez, we have territory-many spheres of influence that overflow with unlimited opportunities.  This territory includes all those whose lives we touch, whether in family, church, business, school, or community. In the same way that God blesses us for a purpose, He is ready to expand our territory for a purpose-so we will have more influence for Him.

 

Spheres of Influence:

When we're ready to enlarge our territory for God, He helps us move outward through the spheres of influence we already have:

 

Start with family and friends;

Move out to neighborhood and community;

Jump to new places, people, and cultures;

Ask for planet earth.  WOW!

 

The M Word:

My favorite word for enlarging my territory is ministry.  Ministry describes what happens when God uses you to help or influence others for Him.  You could say that the Jabez Real Estate Law for Christians is: My territory-My spheres of influence-My potential Ministry.

 

 

Talk Points:

How could a person who is already feeling busy or overwhelmed enlarge his or her life for God?

Does pursuing more influence or significance always mean doing more?

When was the last time you asked God for more ministries?

What happened?

Look around: what is the territory that would be the most challenging to take for the Lord?

How does knowing that Jesus commands you to take territory change the way you think about his part of the Jabez prayer?

When have you felt most sure that you were keeping an appointment with someone for God?

What did God do through you?

What could you learn from it?

 

Extra:

A Gentile soldier named Cornelius wants to know more about God. With the help of an angel and a very alarming dream, God brought Cornelius and Peter together.  The results: A family came to faith in Christ, a believer expanded his boundaries (and his understanding of God's love), and the church broke through an ancient boundary line of prejudice.

 

If you have the book "The Prayer of Jabez Bible Study," please read with me pages 30-33; thanks. I wish I had more time to posted everything, but my job want allow me too, sorry.  I thank God for my job!

 

Prayer:

"Oh, that You would enlarge my territory!"

 

Quotes:

"Expect great things from God; attempt great things from God."  (by William Carey)

One Jump. . . "Don't be afraid to take a big step. You can't cross a chasm in two small jumps." (By David Lloyd George)

 

Ending Scripture:    (Isaiah 6:8)

"Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me."

 

 

Statement:

My new start in a large life:
            To close this week study on expanding our territory, pray the following prayer aloud, and then pray it every day in the coming week.

 

Prayer:

Dear Lord, thank You for making me in Your image and for preparing me for a wonderful and important destiny.  Forgive me for withdrawing into my own meager and limiting dreams.  When I do this, I deny You the freedom to use me as Your mouth, hands, and heart.  I want to fulfill Your world-sized dream for me every day of my life.  And in eternity, I want to run into Your arms hearing the words, "Well done!"  Please expand my influence and impact for You beyond all I can imagine.  I am Your devoted servant. Her I am, Lord, please send me! Amen.

 

 

Questions:

 

Am I "Bounding Buster"?

What does territory mean, and where is mine?

What does the Bible say about taking territory for God?

 

How would God work through me to reach others?

What would my life look like if God enlarged my borders?

What keeps me from reaching for more territory?

Monday, October 21, 2013

BIBLE STUDY COMMENTS: (10/21/13)

 

How do we pray for God's blessing without crossing over into God-dishonoring prayer?

 

James 4:3 Pray with right motives

 

I John 5:14 Pray according to God's will

 

Matthew 6:33 Seek first the kingdom of God.

 

I John 2:15-17 Make sure that a love for the world and its values has not replaced your love

for God.

 

I Timothy 2:1 don't pray just for yourself but for the needs of everyone.

 

I Corinthians 10:31 Evaluate everything you do and want and prayer for, and decide if it is something that will bring God glory.

 

Philippians 3:8-10 Ask for and pursue a growing relationship with Jesus Christ so that you can become more like Him.







 





Thursday, October 17, 2013

BIBLE STUDY WEEK 1 (RESPONDING TO "BLESS ME INDEED")


 
These blessings are based on the nature and character of God. He simply desire to give! (Read Exodus 14:6 to see God's self-portrait.)  And it is His will that we want all of what he has to give.  (you can find this on pages 11-15)

This is what I learn about God's desire to bless me.

I Corinthians 2:9
"But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him."

He is waiting to bless us; eagerly waiting.

Romans 8:28-30"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose."

 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified."

He predestinated our blessings because of His love for us.

Romans 2:4"Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?"
His love for us is longsuffering so we can repent

James 1:17
"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning."

God's love for us will never change; He loved us when we were in our sin, and surely He will love us while living a holy life unto Him, therefore, giving us what we need and desire according to His Word.  AMEN!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

BIBLE STUDY WEEK 1 (10/15/13)


 
BIBLE STUDY "The Prayer of Jabez" BIBLE STUDY  (By Bruce Wilkinson)
WEEK 1 
(10/15/13)
 
Subject:    "A Prayer with a PURPOSE" 
                                     "It was a Prayer of blessing"


Scripture:   I Chronicles 4:10 (KJV) 

     "And Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, Oh that thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my coast, and that thine hand might be with me, and that thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me! And God granted him that which he requested."

This week we'll Discover:
What the word blessing means.
Why you must ask in order to receive certain kinds of blessings
Why it's not selfish to ask God to bless you.
What attitudes need to be revised to agree with the Bible
How to pray the advanced prayer for the Jabez blessing.

Key:
"Forms of the verb to bless (barak in Hebrew) appear nearly four hundred times in the Old Testament.  To bless mean to favor, honor, or bestow special gifts or status.  In the Bible, for example, fathers pronounced blessings on their sons to pass along the family birthright of inheritance.  People blessed God in their worship-"Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not His benefits" (Psalm 103:2).
But the kind of blessing we're talking about here is God's favor on us-His supernatural gifts that we don't earn and that we can't receive from anyone else.  That's why the Bible says, "It is  the LORD's blessing that makes you wealthy.  Hard work can make you no richer" (Proverbs 10:22, TEV).  The Bible clearly teaches that God cares about all our needs-material, emotional, and spiritual."
You can also understand blessings in terms of the basis on which they're given:
1.   A conditional blessing means there's something I have to do if I want what God has to give. If I don't do it, I won't get the blessings. Check out Christ's conditional blessing out in (Matthew 5:11-12), and the blessings and curses listed in (Deuteronomy 28-30).
2.   An unconditional blessing is one that God decides to give with no requirements. The recipient doesn't have to qualify to receive it.  Look at the promises God made to Abraham in (Genesis 12:2-3).
These blessings are based on the nature and character of God. He simply wants to give!  (Read Exodus 14:6 to see God's self-portrait).  And it is His will that we want all of what He has to give.

What do you learn about God's desire to bless in these verses?
I Corinthians 2:9
Romans 8:28-30
Romans 2:4
James 1:17

Share if you desire or just read them for more knowledge on God's blessings.

Abraham:   The man God chose to bless (Read Genesis 12:1-3)
Jacob:       The man who wrestled to be blessed (Read Genesis 32:22-29)
David:       The man who understood the source of blessings (Read I Chronicles 29:9-18)

Jabez traced his "blessing inheritance" back to Abraham, the faith of the Jewish people.  One day God promised Abraham, "I will bless you. . .and you shall be a blessing" (Genesis 12:2).  It was an unconditional covenant of generosity initiated by God.  Abraham believed God and traveled to the Promised Land (Canaan) in pursuit of the blessing.  But Abraham didn't earn God's goodness. In fact, if you trace his life story (Genesis 12-25), you'll see a man who made a lot of mistakes.  But he never stopped reaching for God's favor.  That's why the Bible calls Abraham "friend of God" (James 2:23) and "father of all those who believe" (Romans 4:11)
It's not selfish to pray, "Bless me, indeed!"  For many Christians, the whole idea of praying for personal blessings sounds wrong.  Aren't we supposed to pray for others, not ourselves?  They ask. Isn't it selfish to ask for me? Certainly asking for blessing isn't the only way to pray. We're taught to intercede for others, to confess, to worship, and to give thanks.  The Jabez prayer simply starts with our urgent desire to receive God's special favor. It is based on a racial trust that God will answer in great love.

Getting Specific:
God is pleased when, like Jabez, we trustingly ask Him for His best without specifying exactly how we want Him to bless us. But it's okay to go beyond the Jabez prayer and ask God to bless us in specific way. Those prayers please the Lord, too.  Just be careful to check your motives…and to keep your eyes open for God's surprising answers. "Blessing doesn't always equal 'health and wealth'."
Unfortunately, some teach that God wants every believer to prosper materially and that your prosperity proves God's favor.  That would mean if you don't have the house and car you want, something is wrong with your faith.  This teaching is a distortion of what the Bible clearly says in I Timothy 6:5-10.  It also contradicts not only the call of Jesus to take up our crosses and follow Him (Luke 9:23-25), but also His own example of setting aside worldly comforts to do the will of His Father, even to the point of death on the cross (Philippians 2:5-8).   So how do we pray for generous blessing without crossing over into God-dishonoring prayer?  Good question!

Read:
James 4:3 Pray with _______________________motives
I John 5:14 Pray according to God's_______________
Matthew 6:33 Seek_____________ the kingdom of God
I John 2:15-17 Make sure that a love for the world and its values has not replaced your_____
For God.
I Timothy 2:1 don't pray just for yourself but for the needs of____________
I Corinthians 10:31 Evaluate everything you do and want and prayer for, and decide if it is something that will bring God____________
Philippians 3:8-10 Ask for and pursue a growing relationship with _________________so that you can become more like Him.

Talk Points:
What is the greatest blessing you've ever received in your life?
Have you always considered it a blessing?
Can God bless you even when He appears to be saying no to a specific request?
If Jesus came to you and said, "I will bless you greatly and change the world through you, but. . .you must make sacrifices for Me," what would you say?  (see Acts 9:10-16)  How?

Extra:
The lavish generosity of the Jewish people in donating to the Temple highlighted the last day of King David. Perhaps more than any other person in the Old Testament. David understood the profound role of God in this act of sacrificial worship.

Prayer:
"Oh, that You would bless me indeed!"

Quote:
"At Least Take a Bucket"
    Asking is the beginning of receiving. Make sure you don't go to the ocean with a teaspoon.  At least take a bucket so the kids won't laugh at you."  (By Jim Rohn)

Ending Scripture:   (Psalm 67:1-2)
God be merciful unto us, and bless us; and cause his face to shine upon us; Selah.  That thy way may be known upon earth, thy saving health among all nations.

Statement:
My new start in the blessed life:
 To close this week study on blessing, pray the following prayer aloud, then pray it every day in the coming week.

Prayer:
My prayer for blessing……….
Dear Lord, I want every single blessing that You would love to give me, and I am sure all prayer warriors do too. Forgive us for not desiring  these enough to ask for them. Please open Your heart, and be gracious to us.  You are good, and everything You do is good.  So let us experience You today, in all of Your abundant loving-kindness, even though we are in all of our unworthiness. Touch our lives in ways that are very personal so that we don't miss Your fingerprints.  Bless us, Lord, we pray, bless us, indeed.  And we will praise You, from Whom all blessings flow. Amen.

Questions:
What do I really believe about blessing?
What does God's blessing mean?
Who else in the Bible was extraordinarily blessed?
How do I maximize God's blessings?
How do I receive God's blessings in my life?
What would my life look like if I asked for blessing?
What is keeping me from breaking through to the blessed life ?

I shall return later if anyone want to discuss anything now.  Please feel free

Thursday, October 10, 2013

NEW BIBLE STUDY INTRODUCTION: (10/8/13)

 

BIBLE STUDY

"THE PRAYER OF JABEZ BIBLE STUDY"

(By Bruce Wilkinson)

(10/8/13)


INTRODUCTION:

 

I am excited about my new Bible study, and hope others will join me with their Bible study too.  This study will last for six to seven weeks.  As I said earlier, I have read this book, but have never really sit down and study it; good time to do so now.  

Father God, bless this study for our growth and more knowledge of Your Word, and most of all to learn how to ask and receive from You as we need, amen.

 

Let's get started with our introduction today……………………

 

A PRAYER TO CHANGE YOUR LIFE:

 

Sometime around three thousand years ago, one of history's great nobodies decided to pray.  when he looked at himself and his circumstances, he saw no reason for hope. But when he prayed, he prayed the boldest, most hopeful prayer he could imagine.  And God answered.

 

God is still answering.  The prayer of a man named Jabez is motivating millions of people today to seek the Lord in a new way, to cry out to Him for blessing, and to reach for a larger life in His service.  Are you one?  Then you too are an answer to Jabez's prayer.

 

Once you see what God can do through His most ordinary servants, you'll never want to slide back into mediocre living. For too long, Christians have drastically underestimated God's desire to bless them and work through them to accomplish His will in the world, even in our current situation.

 

If Jabez were around today, he'd be quick to tell you that the words of his little prayer hold no magical powers.  But he would also tell you that if you want to experience God's greater purpose for your life-no matter how unpromising your circumstances might be right now-you're just a prayer away.

 

In This study we will do (Keys) (Extras) and (Talk points). This study will last up to (6) weeks. I am looking forward to this. I have read this book many times, but never actually studied it. And this is a good time to do it.

 

Keys indicate a key verse, question, definition, or explanation that you won't want to miss.

Extra indicates optional material for further study. Use this to help you decide what materials you can leave for later.

Talk Point indicates a group process question that focuses on life experience.

 

SCRIPTURE:

 

(I Chronicles 4:9-10)

 

"And Jabez was more honorable than his brethren: and his mother called his name Jabez, saying, Because I bare him with sorrow.  And Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, Oh that thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my coast, and that thine hand might be with me, and that thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me! And God granted him that which he requested."

 

This scripture will be post in every week's study in a different version for deeper study.

 

1. The verses of the text contain all that the Bible says about Jabez.

a. They are found in what is usually regarded as dry genealogical records.

b. But certainly no thoughtful person would call these verses dry.

2. But even if these records do not furnish as interesting reading matter as do other parts of the Bible it is evident that they should not be skipped.

a. For in making his way through these uninviting chronicles of births and deaths,

the reader does not know what treasure he may light upon.

b. These words of the text are a fine example of this idea.

c. Such experience is like finding a flower in the desert; a treasure hidden in the

sand; or a star peeping through the dark storm clouds.

 

If you haven't read The Prayer of Jabez yet, I highly recommend you do.  If you're new to the story, you'll find it in above, which is found in I Chronicles, buried in the official genealogies of the tribes of Israel.  The historian, writing about 500 B.C., traces the official family tree of Jews from Adam through thousands of years up to his own time. That endeavor makes for hundreds of names-most of them unfamiliar and hard to pronounce.

 

Take chapter 4.  The sons of Judah were Perez, Hezron, Carmi, Hur, and Shobal.  And that's just verse one.   Not exactly suspenseful reading!  But, mid-litany, the chronicler stops.  One name deserves special comment:  Jabez

 

In the next verse, the roll call continues as if nothing has happened---Chelub, Shuab, Mehir. . .You can scour from front to back in the Bible as I have, looking for more insight into this man Jabez, and you'll find nothing.  We know simply that things started badly for a person no one had heard of; he prayed an unusual, one-sentence prayer; and things ended extraordinarily well.

 

That one prayer and a life that was "more honorable than his brothers"  earned Jabez a  place of honor in Israel's history books.  And fortunately for us, his mini-biography reveals an intriguing record of personal transformation.  In only two verses, we see cause and effect-beginning, middle, and end.  And if we look hard enough, we find hiding behind each of his four requests a truth that can change our lives and our futures.

 

Where Miracles Begin:

 

Personal change begins when you cry out to God for what He wants for you with hands open and heart expectant.  Miracles begin here, too. Each week you'll see new beginning and new opportunities.  You'll think new thoughts.  The direction and impact of your life will shift.  And your name, like Jabez's will be headed for God's honor roll for all eternity.

 

As we study remember that you are in full pursuit of blessing  from a God who can "do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us" (Ephesians 3:20).

May He strengthen and guide you, and bless you indeed!

 

OBSERVE, JABEZ THE MAN.

 

A. We do not know who Jabez was, except that in 4:1 we see this list was the

descendants of Judah.

1. This brief history of Jabez is both interesting and stimulating.

2. From the occurrence of the same name in Ch. 2:55, it has been assumed that

Jabez was the founder of the schools or colleges of the scribes.

 

 

B.     Observe His Name.

1. Scripture names are often significant.

2. This was given to him by his mother, in token, and memory of the sorrow in

which she bore her son.

3. Just what these circumstances were, we're not told.

 a. His father may have passed away before he was born, leaving his

widowed mother lonely and sad as she thought of the new cares and

responsibilities which come upon her as she attempted to rear her

fatherless child.

b. It may have been that the family was in deep poverty, and she saw no

way to provide for an additional helpless child.

c. Or again, it may have been that the mother of Jabez was subject to

unusual suffering and peril in giving birth to him.

(1. Consider Rachel. Gen. 35:16-18.

(2. She may have thought she might have to leave this innocent babe

in the cold and stormy world and for that reason she called him

Jabez, "because," she said, "I bear him with sorrow."

 

C.     Jabez, A Man of Prayer.

1. Of the man Jabez, we have only this brief account. He is known only by his

prayer. Yet, the prayer reveals to us an amazing revelation about his

character.

2. We see a man who believes in and practices prayer. We are impressed by the

determined and earnest directness of the prayer.

3. It serves us as a good model prayer.

 

D.     When we examine the tone of the prayer, we see a humble Jabez.

1. He has a deep sense of personal helplessness, and a trembling fear of

responsibility.

 

E.     The prayer reveals that Jabez was intelligent and thoughtful.

1. He had formed a sensible estimate of life. To him life was work, duties,

Responsibilities, cares, and trust.

2. And for it all he recognized the need of a guiding and upholding hand.


Let's observe Jabez's prayer…………………...

We see his prayer was to the God of Israel.

1. The God of his father, the God of the covenant.

2. Though not in his address, we are told that he called on the God of Israel.

3. An example for us to address our prayer to the One supreme God, not to a false

notion of God. (Vs. prayer as only psychological help)

 

 

Week (2) two we will look at the beginning of Jabez's prayer.   

 

Prayer for a good study………………………….

 

We thank You Father, we praise You, and we honor You, because You are a good God.  We love You.  Father God, bless this new study, so we can become more aware of Your presence, and Your goodness.  Bless us with the Holy Spirit's knowledge, wisdom, and understanding of this study. Father, we thank You for creating within us a wise and discerning heart, so that we are able to distinguish between right and wrong, so that we can understand this study with hearts of reacceptances of Your Word.  Father, we trust in You with all our hearts and lean not on our own understanding; in all our ways we acknowledge You, and You will make our path straight.  Through Your precepts we get understanding; therefore, we hate every false ways. Your Word is a lamp to our feet and a light to our path in this study. We pray this in Jesus' name. Amen.