SESSION 10 - THE SUFFERINGS OF JESUS, DISCIPLINE AND JUDGMENT

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SESSION 10 - THE SUFFERINGS OF JESUS, DISCIPLINE AND JUDGMENT

GROUP VIDEO

Today we look at three common misunderstandings about suffering. We ask:

  • How should we interpret the “sufferings of Jesus” the believer is supposed to endure?
  • What about the discipline of the Lord?
  • What about God’s judgment?

 

SESSION 10 - GROUP VIDEO

Watch 10-20 minutes of a GROUP video teaching, that correlates with the full Workshop semester topics.         

GROUP CONVERSATION GUIDE

  • How should we interpret the “sufferings of Jesus” the believer is supposed to endure?
  • What about the discipline of the Lord?
  • What about God’s judgment?

In the way we answer these questions, our goal is to restore every believer to a secure attachment to God. When there is ambiguity around these ideas you will drift back to a chaotic, confused, anxious, avoidant or insecure attachment to God.

 

"DOESN’T THE BIBLE TEACH 'SUFFERING' AS A CHRISTIAN DOCTRINE?"

HEBREWS 5:8-9 NIV Although he (Jesus) was a son, HE LEARNED OBEDIENCE from WHAT HE SUFFERED 9 and, once MADE PERFECT, he became the source of eternal salvation… 

PHILIPPIANS 2:6-7 AMPC Who, although being essentially one with God and in the form of God POSSESSING THE FULLNESS OF THE ATTRIBUTES WHICH MAKE GOD GOD], did not think this equality with God was a thing to be eagerly grasped or retained, 7 But STRIPPED HIMSELF [OF ALL PRIVILEGES and rightful dignity], so as to assume the guise of a servant (slave), in that He became like men and was born a human being.

LUKE 2:40, 52 NKJV And the Child GREW and became strong in spirit, filled with WISDOM; and the grace of God was upon Him. ... 52 And Jesus INCREASED IN WISDOM and stature, and in favor with God and men.

1 PETER 2:20-21 NIV But how is it to your credit if you receive a beating for doing wrong and endure it? But if you SUFFER for doing good and you endure it, this is commendable before God. 21 To this you were called, because CHRIST SUFFERED for you, LEAVING YOU an EXAMPLE, that you should FOLLOW IN HIS STEPS.

The sufferings of Jesus, or the doctrine of suffering, is not to be equated with general human sufferings like sickness, disease, poverty, victimization or even natural disasters.

 

There Are Two Kinds of Biblical Suffering:

  1. The EXAMPLE of Christ’s sufferings – a type of suffering we are to follow and implement into our lives
  2. The SUBSTITUTIONARY suffering of Christ – suffering Jesus did FOR us so that we would NOT have to suffer that way

Clearly, these and many more verses tell of a “doctrine of suffering.”  But the suffering we are to have are exemplified by the type things Jesus suffered.  Keep in mind that there is a difference between the “EXAMPLE OF CHRIST in suffering” and the “SUBSTITUTION OF CHRIST in suffering.”  We are exhorted to follow His example in suffering, but not His substitution, in that He was taking our place.

So the question to ask is, “Did Jesus ever suffer evil outside of persecution during his entire 33 years on the earth?”  More specifically did he ever suffer…

  • Sickness, disease, common colds, flu, cancers, etc.
  • Accidents, donkey wrecks (car wrecks), falling from buildings, drink poison, etc.
  • Natural disasters, earthquakes, fires, tornadoes, lake storms, etc.
  • Terror, vandalism, physical abuse (Jesus said, (John 10:18) “No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.” 

HEBREWS 2:18 NIV Because he (Jesus) himself SUFFERED WHEN HE WAS TEMPTED, he is able to help those who are being tempted.

 

How Did Jesus Suffer As Our Example? 

So if Jesus didn’t suffer as our example on any of these issues it isn’t the way we are perfected either.  The suffering that perfected Jesus was 2-fold…

  1. When Jesus was TEMPTED, TESTED AND TRIED by the devil.
    • TEMPTED TO SIN - HEBREWS 2:18 Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.
    • TEMPTED TO DISOBEY/DISBELIEVE (Obedience to God’s Call brings suffering)
  2. When Jesus was PERSECUTED for His spiritual convictions. 
    • 1 PETER 2:20-21 NIV But how is it to your credit if you receive a beating for doing wrong and endure it? But if you SUFFER for doing good and you endure it, this is commendable before God. 21 To this you were called, because CHRIST SUFFERED for you, LEAVING YOU an EXAMPLE, that you should FOLLOW IN HIS STEPS.
    • 1 PETER 3:12-14, 17 NKJV For the eyes of the LORD [are] on the righteous, And His ears [are open] to their prayers; But the face of the LORD [is] against those who do evil." 13 And who [is] he who will harm you if you become followers of what is good? 14 But even if you should suffer for righteousness' sake, [you are] blessed. "And do not be afraid of their threats, nor be troubled." ... 17 For [it is] better, if it is the will of God, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.
    • 1 PETER 4:12-16 NKJV - 12 Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; 13 but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ's sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy. 14 If you are reproached for the name of Christ, blessed [are you], for the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. On their part He is blasphemed, but on your part He is glorified. 15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer, a thief, an evildoer, or as a busybody in other people's matters. 16 Yet if [anyone suffers] as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in this matter.
    • 2 TIMOTHY 3:10-12 NKJVBut you have carefully followed my doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, longsuffering, love, perseverance, 11 PERSECUTIONS, AFFLICTIONS, which HAPPENED TO ME at Antioch, at Iconium, at Lystrawhat PERSECUTIONS I endured. And out of them all the Lord delivered me. 12 Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will SUFFER PERSECUTION

Both kinds of suffering required an intense reliance on the Word of God to overcome.  It wasn’t simply suffering but the power of God’s Word working in our lives when any of these kinds of suffering were present.

Again, the Christian doctrine of suffering does not include any of the curses of the law. If Jesus redeemed us from a kind of suffering, then we don’t have to experience it.    

 

"WHAT ABOUT THE 'CHASTENING' OR 'DISCIPLINING' OF THE LORD?"

HEBREWS 12:5-8 KJV And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the CHASTENING of the Lord, nor faint when thou art REBUKED of him:  6 For whom the Lord loveth he CHASTENETH, and SCOURGETH every son whom he receiveth.  7 IF YE ENDURE chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?  8 But IF YE BE WITHOUT chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.

The bottom line on this verse is that “chastening” happens through “rebuke” or words, in our case the Word of God.  When we don’t surrender to the Word of God hardness enters into our lives (not as an overt “act of God” but a by-product of our own disobedience that is consistent with spiritual laws like,

GALATIANS 6:7-8 KJV Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever A MAN SOWETH, that shall HE ALSO REAP.  For he that SOWETH to the FLESH shall of the flesh REAP CORRUPTION; but he that SOWETH to the SPIRIT shall of the Spirit REAP LIFE EVERLASTING.

ROMANS 8:6 KJV For to be CARNALLY MINDED IS DEATH; but to be SPIRITUALLY MINDED IS LIFE AND PEACE.

Let’s look at the NIV translation…

HEBREWS 12:5-7 NIV And you have forgotten that word of encouragement that addresses you as sons:  "My son, do not make light of the LORD'S DISCIPLINE, and do not lose heart when he REBUKES you, 6 because the Lord DISCIPLINES those he loves, and he PUNISHES everyone he accepts as a son.“  7 ENDURE HARDSHIP AS DISCIPLINE; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father?

The spiritual laws that God has placed in the universe, like physical laws can work for us or against us.  Inherent with in our disobedient choices are a slew of hardships.  God doesn’t create those hardships nor is it His will that we develop hardships in our disobedience.  He simply knows that inherent within our choices we will have hardships and those hardships serve as symbols of His Word rebuking us.  In essence, when hardship arises we can easily see that God’s Word was true bringing clarity to not violating His Word.

This disciplining cannot be God overtly causing things like hurricanes, cancers, terror, and accidents to happen as our “punishment” in that He says here, “If ye endure the chastening…” and “if ye be without chastening.”  This indicates the discipline the Lord brings to us is contingent on our free will response to Him, not some overt, dominant event.  If it were overt and dominant like the hurricane, cancer, etc. He would not have to say “If…ye endure” we all would endure by the fact that the storm is present. 

Also He distinguishes here between the way the unbeliever and the believer are treated.  Hurricanes, cancers, etc. are experiences that all human beings, believers and unbelievers, experience.  The emphasis cannot be on the evil around us but on how we respond to God in the midst of suffering.  That is where true correction, discipline and the love of a Father happens.

 

"WHAT ABOUT THE 'JUDGMENT' OF GOD?"

There clearly is the doctrine of God’s Judgment in Scripture.  The Bible calls God “a God of Judgment. (Is 30:18)”  But again let’s see what this kind of judgment is in 1Cor 11:28…

1 CORINTHIANS 11:28-32 KJV But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup (communion table). 29 For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation (judgment) to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. 30 For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep (die). 31 For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. 32 But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.

Here we see that we engage the judgment upon ourselves when we “drink unworthily” (in this case).  Spiritual laws of sowing and reaping are engaged and consequences happen.  When we are judged we are “chastened of the Lord.”  Our chastening is a by-product of refusing to allow God’s Word to govern our choices.  Inherent within that disobedience is our judgment.

There are two applications of judgment to two different people groups:

1. Judgement on Believers/Christians

2. Judgement on Non-Believers/Non-Christians

 

Judgment on Believer’s/Christians

According to Deuteronomy 28:15-17, 38-40, the curse of poverty was to come upon people if they disobeyed God’s laws. It was a curse that would come upon them because they failed to observe all His commandments and His statutes. This wasn't a show of God’s revenge or retribution; but man, in violation of God's spiritual laws, engaged the judgment/curse that was inherent within a law. In Deuteronomy God is simply warning the people He loves that judgments come when spiritual laws are broken without repentance. The curse wasn't a personal attack from God, but a process that happens when laws are disregarded. The law itself brought the judgment/curse. Similar to how a violation of gravity isn't a personal vendetta from God, the law itself holds the judgment.

Jesus gave us progressive revelation of this by sharing, "He who rejects Me, and does not receive My words, has that which judges him--THE WORD THAT I HAVE SPOKEN WILL JUDGE HIM in the last day (JOHN 12:48 NKJV).”

The Apostle Paul also says, [But] we know that the JUDGMENT (adverse verdict, sentence) of God falls justly and IN ACCORDANCE WITH TRUTH… 12 …all who have sinned under the Law will be JUDGED AND CONDEMNED BY THE LAW (ROMANS 2:2, 12).”

Within the violation of the law is the curse of that broken law. The curses are physical, emotional/psychological, material/financial and social. But Christ has Redeemed us from the curse of the law. So Christ has Redeemed us from physical, emotional/psychological, material/financial and social need.

 

Judgment on Non-Believers/Non-Christians

For the non-believer/non-Christian there is an additional judgment to what is mentioned above, this one is an eternal judgment. While the wrath of God, which is a part of God’s justice, His just-nature, is absorbed in Christ’s sacrifice for the believer, it is forcefully experienced by the non-believer. We do embrace the concept of God’s wrath being poured out on unbelievers as an eternal judgement. It is real, it is genuine emotion, yet it is stable and principled. God’s wrath initiates God pulling back His mercy and revealing the awesome power of His Holiness that manifest to people as judgment.  Funky things happen when sin, rebellion and hardness are exposed to God’s purity. This isn’t God flying off in a rage, but an allowance of those who refuse to accept Christ’s sacrifice for them to encounter God’s justice. Sin has to be dealt with. 

1 THESSALONIANS 5:9 NKJV For God did not appoint us (believers) to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ,

 

NEXT SEMESTER:

  • Redemption is what Christ DID (for you)
  • Spiritual Authority is what you DO (in response to Redemption)
  • The Holy Spirit is how HE HELPS US (DO spiritual authority in response to what Christ DID)

GROUP DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

Take a few moments to discuss your answers to these questions with the Group.

 

ICE BREAKER  

What is something you wish you did more of in your life and something you wish you did less of?

 

MY MEMOIR STORIES

IMPORTANT:  If the Group would like to continue telling one Memoir Story per week until they are completed, that might allow for a more congruent transition. Please be sensitive to the Science of Freedom content and discussion. It is important that our people are exposed to the possibilities in their potential that this content will provide. Please take no more than 20-25 minutes for the Memoir to leave time for the rest of the content below.

MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEET at the linkThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)You can also watch the WRAP UP video from last week that explains how to use the worksheet. Each person's Memoir should be 10-15 minutes long.

 

QUESTIONS

  1. After watching Session 10’s video, what is your biggest takeaway, “ah ha” moment, or challenging thought? Why?
  2. Describe how you feel to know that God will never use human suffering to discipline you, but only use His Word and the conviction of His Spirit.
  3. Describe how it makes you feel to know that God is NOT taking out a personal punishment of human sufferings to “judge” you.
  4. What does it mean to you to “endure sufferings” as it relates to the sufferings of Jesus (obedience and non-physical persecution)?

SESSION 10 - WRAP UP

This is a 5-10 minute section for MOVING FORWARDGOING DEEPER, use of worksheets and periodic church-wide announcements.

 

MOVE FORWARD

Receive the challenge to “move forward” by applying what was learned this week.

SUGGESTIONS:

1.    IF YOU HAVEN'T ALREADY, PREPARE TO TELL YOUR STORY, your MEMOIR, to the rest of us over the next few weeks. Use the MY MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEETThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)

2.    PRAY FOR GROUP MEMBER - Pray for at least one person in the Group. Try to identify someone who hasn't been prayed for, or given an encouraging Scripture. Don't worry about feeling inadequate as a prayer. No one feels like they are professional prayers, at least not when they look into eyes of the Almighty God. Praying the Scriptures over people is the best way to learn how to pray effectively. Simply find a Scripture, put the person's name in the text, and pray those words out loud. Then ask the Lord to help you think of things to say to Him about them that would help their lives. 

3.    ASK FOR A SCRIPTURE WORD - Ask God to give you a Scripture to give them to encourage, comfort and edify them. You can Google search "God's Promises" and find a plethora of appropriate texts. Look for one that seems to give you a spark of energy as you think about the person you have been praying for.

4.    DELIVER THE WORD TO THEM - Then send them an email, text or phone call to encourage them. This is how the Holy Spirit works in our lives. As you practice these movements you will expand your own capacity with God, all while giving people much needed hope and strength. 

 

GOING DEEPER

Encouragement to engage the FULL WORKSHOP SEMESTER experience. While this is not required, nor is the Group discussions connected to the full workshop, it is an option for everyone.


PRAYER / DISMISS GROUP

Prayer time with the Group.

Comment

SESSION 09 - GOD'S PASSION FOR YOU AND HIS BLESSINGS

Comment

SESSION 09 - GOD'S PASSION FOR YOU AND HIS BLESSINGS

GROUP VIDEO

Today we look at why Redemption is important. We ask:

  • Does God have an emotion towards our pain and suffering?
  • Why does God hate sin?
  • Can God hate the pain in your life and yet you still not experience God's "will" for your healing?

SESSION 9 - GROUP VIDEO

Watch 10-20 minutes of a GROUP video teaching, that correlates with the full Workshop semester topics.         

GROUP CONVERSATION GUIDE

GOD’S ATTITUDE TOWARDS THE CURSES OF THE BROKEN LAW

GALATIANS 3:13,14, 29 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us, for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangs on a tree: That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith...And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.

God is PASSIONATE. A great working definition of passion is Any extravagant, ardent or extreme emotion that compels one to outbursts of action, including enduring intense suffering and agony simply to fulfill the desire.

Sin is anything that God knows will destroy our lives.

God hates anything that mars His creation, that destroys us.

God’s attitude towards the curse of sin is the same as His attitude towards sin. God hates sin. God hates the curses brought into the world through sin.

HEBREWS 12:1-2 NKJV - 1 Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares [us], and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of [our] faith, who FOR THE JOY THAT WAS SET BEFORE HIM ENDURED THE CROSS, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

EPHESIANS 1:7 NKJV In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace.

God is passionate about these things! He isn’t passively removing our sin, the heinous and repulsive agency that separates God from us. He PASSIONATELY wants intimacy with us through Jesus Christ’s morally legal sacrifice.

LUKE 13:10-17 NKJV Now He (Jesus) was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath. 11 And behold, there was a woman who had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bent over and could in no way raise herself up. 12 But when Jesus saw her, He called her to Him and said to her, "Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity."  13 And He laid His hands on her, and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God. 14 But the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath; and he said to the crowd, "There are six days on which men ought to work; therefore come and be healed on them, and not on the Sabbath day." 15 The Lord then answered him and said,  "Hypocrite! Does not each one of you on the Sabbath loose his ox or donkey from the stall, and lead it away to water it?  16 So ought NOT THIS WOMAN, being a DAUGHTER OF ABRAHAM, whom SATAN HAS BOUND — think of it — for eighteen years, BE LOOSED FROM THIS BOND on the Sabbath?"  17 And when He said these things, all His adversaries were put to shame; and all the multitude rejoiced for all the glorious things that were done by Him.

This lady “ought” to be healed. However, her experience wasn’t healing. The reasons she “ought” to be healed is because she is a daughter of Abraham and because it was Satan who had bound her. Yet, both of these reasons preexisted to this moment. She should have been healed in the mind of God long before she experienced it. This reinforces the idea that many things desired go un-experienced, yet God longs for the thing to be done.

GALATIANS 3:13,14, 29 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us, for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangs on a tree: That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith...And if ye be Christ's, then are YE ABRAHAM'S SEED, and HEIRS ACCORDING TO THE PROMISE.

 

GOD HATES EVIL

PROVERBS 6:16-19 KJV These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: 17 A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, 18 An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, 19 A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.

PROVERBS 8:13 KJV The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate.

1 JOHN 3:8 NKJV He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this PURPOSE THE SON OF GOD was manifested, that He might DESTROY THE WORKS OF THE DEVIL.

That is why…

  • Jesus was moved with compassion on the sick in body.
  • Jesus REBUKED demons that were enforcing these curses. He didn’t “ask” them to leave!
  • Jesus dealt with these curses as though He were dealing with Satan himself!

These are all the undisputed enemies of God and His people! God hates emotional/mental weakness, sickness and poverty with the same passion He hates sin, especially since sin brought these curses into the earth!

Adam’s original sin brought pain, suffering, confusion, sickness, and poverty into the earth, therefore, God’s attitude toward these curses MUST be like that of an enemy. God could not look at these curses that work in our lives in a lackadaisical manner. These curses have wreaked havoc and death on the very ones that God loves. How could God befriend it in any way?

  • Mental confusion, depression, etc is in no way an ally of God!
  • Sickness, pain and diseases is in no way an ally of God!
  • Poverty, lack and financial struggle is in no way an ally of God!

 

GOD HATES THE CURSE

God HATES each curse in the same way He does sin!

  • Fear
  • Confusion
  • Faulty thought processes
  • Foolishness
  • Distance from God
  • Shame
  • Embarrassment
  • Humiliation
  • Addictions
  • Hiding
  • Guilt
  • Inferiority
  • Timidity
  • Hard heartedness
  • Unclean conscience
  • Hating work/labor
  • Can’t get pregnant
  • Financial / vocational failure
  • Darkness mentally
  • No safety or protection or security
  • Sickness, disease, and physical weakness
  • Everything is hard, no momentum, things are impossible
  • Regret
  • Oppression
  • Rejection
  • Anxiety
  • Faithlessness
  • Skepticism
  • Isolation, aloneness, separation
  • Psychological breakdown
  • Victimization
  • No justice
  • Child abductions / kidnappings
  • Rape of life (literally and figuratively)
  • Harassment
  • Supernatural failure
  • Despair
  • Etc.

GROUP DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

Take a few moments to discuss your answers to these questions with the Group.

 

ICE BREAKER  

If you had to name one thing that really makes your day, what would it be?

 

MY MEMOIR STORIES

IMPORTANT:  If the Group would like to continue telling one Memoir Story per week until they are completed, that might allow for a more congruent transition. Please be sensitive to the Science of Freedom content and discussion. It is important that our people are exposed to the possibilities in their potential that this content will provide. Please take no more than 20-25 minutes for the Memoir to leave time for the rest of the content below.

MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEET at the linkThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)You can also watch the WRAP UP video from last week that explains how to use the worksheet. Each person's Memoir should be 10-15 minutes long.

QUESTIONS

  1. After watching Session 9’s video, what is your biggest takeaway, “ah ha” moment, or challenging thought? Why?
  2. Describe how it makes you feel to know that God HATES what sin has done to us, the objects of His love.
  3. When you hear about the woman bowed over in Luke 13:10, how that she "OUGHT" to be healed even though her experience had not yet happened, how do you process that in terms of your own life and God's blessings?
  4. In the Group Notes, the last portion describes all the CURSES that God hates. Describe how this impacts your identity and how you interpret human suffering?

SESSION 9 - WRAP UP

This is a 5-10 minute section for MOVING FORWARDGOING DEEPER, use of worksheets and periodic church-wide announcements.

 

MOVE FORWARD

Receive the challenge to “move forward” by applying what was learned this week.

SUGGESTIONS:

1.    IF YOU HAVEN'T ALREADY, PREPARE TO TELL YOUR STORY, your MEMOIR, to the rest of us over the next few weeks. Use the MY MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEETThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)

2.    PRAY FOR GROUP MEMBER - Pray for at least one person in the Group. Try to identify someone who hasn't been prayed for, or given an encouraging Scripture. Don't worry about feeling inadequate as a prayer. No one feels like they are professional prayers, at least not when they look into eyes of the Almighty God. Praying the Scriptures over people is the best way to learn how to pray effectively. Simply find a Scripture, put the person's name in the text, and pray those words out loud. Then ask the Lord to help you think of things to say to Him about them that would help their lives. 

3.    ASK FOR A SCRIPTURE WORD - Ask God to give you a Scripture to give them to encourage, comfort and edify them. You can Google search "God's Promises" and find a plethora of appropriate texts. Look for one that seems to give you a spark of energy as you think about the person you have been praying for.

4.    DELIVER THE WORD TO THEM - Then send them an email, text or phone call to encourage them. This is how the Holy Spirit works in our lives. As you practice these movements you will expand your own capacity with God, all while giving people much needed hope and strength. 

 

GOING DEEPER

Encouragement to engage the FULL WORKSHOP SEMESTER experience. While this is not required, nor is the Group discussions connected to the full workshop, it is an option for everyone.


PRAYER / DISMISS GROUP

Prayer time with the Group.

Comment

SESSION 8 - THE DIVINE-LIFE NATURE OF GOD

Comment

SESSION 8 - THE DIVINE-LIFE NATURE OF GOD

GROUP VIDEO

Today we ask and explore WHO ARE YOU? We ask:

  • What does death mean at a base-nature level?
  • What does life mean at a base-nature level?
  • How do divine graces empower the human spirit to produce blessings?
  • What does it mean to be "born again" in our nature?

SESSION 8 - GROUP VIDEO

Watch 10-20 minutes of a GROUP video teaching, that correlates with the full Workshop semester topics.         

GROUP CONVERSATION GUIDE

  • Who is God?
  • Who are you?
  • Who are the people around you?
  • Where do you fit in this social system?

These are questions of identity. Redemption shouldn’t be reduced to some kind of simple benefit package, or indifferent promissory agreement; Redemption is about the rich depths of attachment we have been invited into.

A healthy identity is the beginning of health, emotionally and physically. We learned in the Science of Freedom Workshop that all maladaptive behavior and disorders come from an intimacy disorder rooted all the way into the heart, or neuro-biologically in the limbic brain.

  • Psychology refers to identity.
  • Neurobiology refers to the limbic brain.
  • Theology refers to the heart.

 

THE PROCESS OF HUMAN BEHAVIOR

  • Conditioned Heart (Identity, Limbic Brain)
  • Core Beliefs (Emotional Beliefs)
  • Consuming Thoughts to Correlating Emotions
  • Compulsive Behavior

Redemption is the lens that shapes up our interpretation of God.

 

TODAY:  WHO ARE YOU?

If God is absolutely good to you. If He is your nurturer, protector, healer and provider, how does that impact your sense of Self, your identity?

Who are you, and how do you know who you are?

This workshop is to help you adjust your identity? In turn it will reprocess your core beliefs, rewire your consuming thoughts and correlating emotions, and finally compel extraordinary and healthy behaviors.

All maladaptive behavior is rooted in fear. Fear is an intimacy disorder. In our restoration of Self, the transformation of our being, through renewing of our minds, we must address the emotional fears that have found roots by years of traumas, wounds and absent nurture. Our restoration begins with reprocessing our fears with the LOVE of God to us, His good mood and His absolute nurture in every situation.

When Adam and Eve sinned, death came in.

ROMANS 6:23 NKJV For the WAGES of SIN is DEATH, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Death here refers to two deaths; physical and spiritual. 

GENESIS 2:16-17 NKJV And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, "Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; 17 "but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely DIE (Hebrew – two deaths)." 

Spiritual death is a separation between man and God. This separation is more than a geographical distance, or a barrier in between; it is a violated spirit-nature experiencing intimacy disorders with God’s holy-nature.

Physical death is a separation between a person’s body and the real them, the spirit and soul of the person.

Death here is not referring to an event, like when a person is killed. Death here is a spiritual corruption and evil that invaded the human heart. This corruption then infected the human body making physical death emanate.

All brokenness, mental disorder, maladaptive behaviors and human suffering were spawned by this spiritual death that now corrupted the DNA of the human spirit.

Adam’s sin, and the ensuing death, has come on all human beings.

ROMANS 5:12 NKJV Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and DEATH THROUGH SIN, and thus DEATH SPREAD TO ALL MEN, because all sinned—

When Jesus came to redeem mankind he came to redeem us from sin, and the death that expresses from it.

TITUS 2:14 NKJV …who gave Himself for us, that He might REDEEM US from every lawless deed (SIN) and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.

EPHESIANS 1:7 NKJV In Him we have REDEMPTION through His blood, the FORGIVENESS of SINS, according to the riches of His GRACE.

  • “We have…”, Redemption is something we already HAVE; it isn’t something we GET at the intersecting moment of divine intervention in our lives.
  • “Redemption…is according to the riches of His GRACE.”

ROMANS 6:23 NKJV For the WAGES of SIN is DEATH, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Sin creates DEATH. Where did it come from? The sin came from Adam and Eve. The death came from their sin.

Adam’s sin, and the ensuing death, has come on all human beings. 

ROMANS 5:12 NKJV Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and DEATH THROUGH SIN, and thus DEATH SPREAD TO ALL MEN, because all sinned…

We inherited Adam’s sin. However, we also inherited Adam’s death. We inherited Adam’s separation from God. We inherited Adam’s intimacy disorder, a fear based emotional belief system. We inherited Adam’s post-sin dysfunction, incompleteness and brokenness.

Death encompasses multiple things. The word “death” is a metonymy, a figure of speech, that describes sin as a nature, and the delineated curses and consequences of human suffering from sin.

When sin came upon us, death came upon us, permeating our very nature, in our human spirit. This spirit-nature of death programmed our minds, our brain’s neuropathic reactions, and ultimately predisposed us to the same delineated curses. Death, and all its associated characteristics, corrupted us at the human spirit, our lowest level of being.

Adam was created in the image and likeness of God. He was infused with life. The word “life” is a metonymy, a figure of speech, that describes God’s divine nature, and the delineated blessings, permeating the human spirit. Adam’s existence was pure, confident and clothed in God’s very glory. Adam had no sense of fear, doubt or inferiority. Adam’s identity was grounded in absolute trust with God.

When Adam sinned, he immediately experienced the permeation of his spirit with death. So fear, hiding, blaming, self-doubt and insecurity with God all spewed from his very spirit.

We are a spirit being. God is a spirit. Adam, and all human kind, is created in God’s image. This means we are spirit beings also. Our lowest level of being is spirit. We have a soul, which is easiest understood to be the mind, will and emotions. And, we live inside a human body, which is simply an earth vehicle that we occupy and maneuver through the physical dimensions, as we know them.

God wants us to commune with Him spirit to spirit. This is the richest point of connection for intimacy between two beings.

JOHN 4:24 NKJV [Jesus said] "God [is] SPIRIT, and those who worship Him must worship in SPIRIT and truth."

Paul refers to this 3-part makeup of man also.

1 THESSALONIANS 5:23 NKJV Now may the God of PEACE Himself sanctify you COMPLETELY; and may your WHOLE SPIRITSOUL, and BODY be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Prior to Adam’s sin, he and Eve were in complete union with God. After they sinned, the union was destroyed, spinning Adam and Eve into chaos and disorder. Death wasn’t simply an event, or external experience, circumstantial or spatial. Nor was death merely conceptual, theoretical or philosophical. Death was imbedded into the spiritual DNA of Adam, deep within their origins of personality.

Adam’s death came upon all people. This means that death came into the spirit of all people, at the lowest level of our existence. Before we ever personally chose to sin, we had already inherited Adam’s sin, death and the plethora of curses representing death.

 

DEATH REPRESENTS THE FOLLOWING:

(The consequences of unatoned sin Genesis 3 / Deuteronomy 28) 

The below descriptive terms are not just happenings, or events; they are forces inside the human spirit, expressing the death that permeated us at a base-nature level.

  • Fear
  • Confusion
  • Faulty thought processes
  • Foolishness
  • Distance from God
  • Shame
  • Embarrassment
  • Humiliation
  • Addictions
  • Hiding
  • Guilt
  • Inferiority
  • Timidity
  • Hard heartedness
  • Unclean conscience
  • Hating work/labor
  • Can’t get pregnant
  • Financial / vocational failure
  • Darkness mentally
  • No safety or protection or security
  • Sickness, disease, and physical weakness
  • Everything is hard, no momentum, things are impossible
  • Regret
  • Oppression
  • Rejection
  • Anxiety
  • Faithlessness
  • Skepticism
  • Isolation, aloneness, separation
  • Psychological breakdown
  • Victimization
  • No justice
  • Child abductions / kidnappings
  • Rape of life (literally and figuratively)
  • Harassment
  • Supernatural failure
  • Despair
  • Etc.

These terms are derived from the curses of the broken law in Deuteronomy 28. While the disobedience to the broken law produced a curse outcome, there is something much deeper going on here. The curses are spewing from the forces of death that have permeated the human spirit. This death is in the base-nature of mankind’s spirit.

GALATIANS 3:13-14 NKJV Christ has REDEEMED us from the CURSE of the law, having BECOME [KJV – “being made”] a CURSE for us (for it is written, "Cursed [is] everyone who hangs on a tree"), 14 that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith. 

When Jesus was “made” a curse for us, the curse wasn’t just placed on him like a coat; he was literally made a curse at the base-nature, permeating his spirit. Christ could not be our substitute in Redemption, nor could we be identified with him in resurrection, unless he was made sin and the curse at the same nature level we were when Adam sinned. Jesus became sin so we could become righteous. Jesus became death so we could become life. This righteousness and life is a nature-identity level transformation.

When Adam sinned death reigned, or had authority over him. When Jesus redeemed us, grace and righteousness now reign over us. Both are spirit-nature level forces.

ROMANS 5:17 AMP For if because of one man (Adam’s) trespass (lapse, offense) DEATH REIGNED through that one, much more surely will those who receive [God’s] overflowing GRACE (unmerited favor) and the free gift of RIGHTEOUSNESS [putting them into right standing with Himself] REIGN AS KINGS IN LIFE through the one Man Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One).

 

THE SIN NATURE WAS REMOVED FROM THE ROOT

2 CORINTHIANS 5:17, 21 KJV Therefore if any man [be] IN CHRIST, [he is] a NEW CREATURE: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. ... 21 For he hath MADE HIM [TO BE] SIN for us, who knew no sin; that WE MIGHT BE MADE THE RIGHTEOUSNESS of God in him.

What passed away was the sin nature, the death nature, and all the genetic forces that drive the curses into our lives. This is a reference to the human spirit being made new. All that sin and death did to the human spirit passed away. All the righteousness and life that was in Jesus spirit permeated our human spirit with graces and blessings. You became a new species of being. You are not of this world. You are an alien, your fundamental nature is not of this world any longer.

When Jesus said, “You must be born again.” This is what happened to you in the new birth. You became righteous at a nature level. You became life as God’s nature permeated your entire being.

JOHN 10:10 NKJV "The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have LIFE, and that they may HAVE [IT] more abundantly. 

JOHN 3:16 NKJV "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have EVERLASTING LIFE.

Eternal life is the antithesis of death. Life refers to the nature of God. 

EPHESIANS 4:24 AMP And put on the NEW NATURE (the regenerate self) created in GOD'S IMAGE[GODLIKE] in true RIGHTEOUSNESS and HOLINESS.

  • NEW NATURE:  WE ARE UNIFIED AS ONE SPIRIT WITH THE LORD…

1 CORINTHIANS 6:17 NKJV But he who is joined to the Lord is ONE SPIRIT with Him. 

  • NEW NATURE:  WE ARE UNIFIED AS ONE MIND WITH THE LORD…

1 CORINTHIANS 2:16 NKJV For "who has known the mind of the LORD that he may instruct Him?" But WE HAVE THE MIND OF CHRIST.

  • NEW NATURE:  WE ARE UNIFIED AS ONE BODY WITH THE LORD…

1 CORINTHIANS 12:27 NKJV NOW you are THE BODY OF CHRIST, and members individually.

1 CORINTHIANS 6:15-20 NKJV Do you not know that your BODIES are MEMBERS OF CHRIST? Shall I then take the members of Christ and MAKE [THEM] MEMBERS OF A HARLOT? Certainly not! 16 Or do you not know that he who is JOINED TO A HARLOT IS ONE BODY [WITH HER]? For "the two," He says, "shall become one flesh." 17 But he who is JOINED TO THE LORD IS ONE SPIRIT [with Him]. 18 Flee sexual immorality. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body. 19 Or do you not know that YOUR BODY IS THE TEMPLE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT [WHO IS] IN YOU, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? 20 For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God's.

 

IMITATORS OF GOD - GOD'S NATURE - ETERNAL LIFE 

2 PETER 1:4, 8 NKJV …by which have been given to us EXCEEDINGLY GREAT AND PRECIOUS PROMISES, that through these you may be PARTAKERS OF THE DIVINE [GODLIKE] NATURE, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. 8 For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

If it is true that we are partakers of God’s divine nature, why are we still experiencing things that are opposites? Our faith is growing. We are walking in greater light of truth every day. We don’t have to know why things don’t work out to embrace the truths that have been revealed to us. We continue to walk in what we know and more light will be accessed. I think it is powerful to consider that experiencing this divine nature above is contingent on us knowing the great and precious promises. The promises refer to God’s “self-committal” in Redemption. The promise is that God will back up everything in Redemption as an accomplished fact. Our knowledge of this accelerates our experience of the divine nature, along with its permeated blessings.

When experiences are latent to align with my revelation of Redemption, I don’t become indifferent or rejecting of what I know, I simply walk in the light of the truth I have. Over time more truth will come. I can know what is available to me in Redemption without knowing how to fully access it. 

EPHESIANS 4:30-5:2 NKJV Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. 32 And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, FORGIVING one another, even as God in Christ FORGAVE you. 1 Therefore be IMITATORS of God as dear children. 2 And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.

Is the admonition to imitate God even humanly possible? Can we really bear the same fruit in life that Jesus did? We can if we have the divine nature of God infused into our spirit.

1 JOHN 5:18 AMP We know [absolutely] that anyone BORN OF GOD does not [deliberately and knowingly] practice committing sin, but the One Who was begotten of God carefully watches over and protects him [CHRIST'S DIVINE PRESENCE WITHIN HIM preserves him against the EVIL], and the wicked one does not lay hold (get a grip) on him or touch [him].

1 JOHN 5:1, 4-5 NKJV Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is BORN OF GOD, and everyone who loves Him who begot also loves him who is begotten of Him. 4 For whatever is BORN OF GODOVERCOMES the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world — our faith. 5 Who is he who OVERCOMES the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?

1 CORINTHIANS 1:30 KJV But of him (God) are you IN CHRIST JESUS, who of God is MADE unto us WISDOM, and RIGHTEOUSNESS, and SANCTIFICATION, and REDEMPTION (ransom or full deliverance).

 

WHAT IS IN OUR LIFE-NATURE NOW?

  • Love
  • Joy
  • Peace
  • Longsuffering
  • Kindness
  • Goodness
  • Faith
  • Gentleness
  • Self-control
  • Fearlessness
  • Dominion
  • Authority
  • Wisdom
  • Understanding
  • Generosity
  • Strength
  • Freedom
  • Pleasures
  • Energy
  • Fervency
  • Favor with people of all walks of life
  • Clarity of thought
  • Confidence
  • Appreciation
  • Thankfulness
  • Security
  • Righteousness Consciousness
  • No regret
  • Freedom from betrayal
  • Supernatural success
  • Financial prosperity (empowerment to prosper)
  • Physical and emotional health and miracles
  • Protection, security, safety
  • Angelic assistance and protection
  • Community, one-ness with others
  • Strength of mind
  • Momentum
  • Ease of labor and love of vocation
  • Soft-heartedness
  • No bondage or captivity
  • Intimacy
  • Etc.

 

MERE MEN VERSES MEN BORN OF GOD

1 CORINTHIANS 3:3-4 NKJV For you are still carnal. For where there are envy, strife, and divisions among you, are you not carnal and BEHAVING LIKE MERE MEN?

 

GRACES THAT NOW PERMEATE YOUR SPIRIT-NATURE

2 CORINTHIANS 12:9 KJV And he said unto me, My GRACE is sufficient for thee: for MY STRENGTH (miracle ability) is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the POWER of Christ may rest upon me.

2 CORINTHIANS 9:14 KJV And by their prayer for you, which long after you for the exceeding GRACE of God IN YOU.

 

LIVING THE OVERCOMING LIFE:

  • It is not based on God’s SOVEREIGNTY. It is just as available to everyone as salvation is.       
  • It is not based on our GIVING OF FINANCES (tithes and offerings).
  • It is not based on our STEWARDSHIP.
  • It is not based on TALENTS AND NATURAL GIFTINGS
  • It is not based on EDUCATION
  • It is not based on NETWORK OF RELATIONSHIPS (rich friends/mentors)
  • It is not based on ANY CIRCUMSTANCE

 

KINDS OF GRACES:

  • MANIFOLD - 1 PETER 4:10 KJV As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good STEWARDS of the MANIFOLD grace of God.
  • MARRIAGE - ZOE - 1 PETER 3:7 KJV Likewise, ye HUSBANDS, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the WIFE, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being HEIRS TOGETHER of the GRACE OF LIFE; that your prayers be not hindered.
  • SINGING - COLOSSIANS 3:16 KJV Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; TEACHING and ADMONISHING one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, SINGING WITH GRACE in your hearts to the Lord.
  • VERBAL COMMUNICATION - EPHESIANS 4:29 KJV Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may MINISTER GRACE unto the hearers.
  • WEALTH GENERATING GRACE - 2 CORINTHIANS 9:8 KJV And God is able to make ALL GRACE ABOUND toward you; that ye, always HAVING ALL SUFFICIENCY in all things, MAY ABOUND to every good work:

2 CORINTHIANS 8:9 KJV For ye know the GRACE OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes HE BECAME POOR, that ye through his poverty MIGHT BE RICH.  

PHILIPPIANS 4:10-19 KJV But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at the last your care of me hath flourished again; wherein ye were also careful, but ye lacked opportunity. [11] Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. [12] I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. [13] I CAN DO ALL THINGS THROUGH CHRIST which STRENGTHENETH me. [14] Notwithstanding ye have well done, that ye did communicate with my affliction. [15] Now ye Philippians know also, that in the beginning of the gospel, when I departed from Macedonia, no church communicated with me as concerning giving and receiving, but ye only. [16] For even in Thessalonica ye sent once and again unto my necessity. [17] Not because I desire a gift: but I desire fruit that may abound to your account. [18] But I have all, and abound: I am full, having received of Epaphroditus the things which were sent from you, an odour of a sweet smell, a sacrifice acceptable, wellpleasing to God. [19] But MY GOD SHALL SUPPLY ALL YOUR NEEDACCORDING TO HIS RICHES IN GLORY by Christ Jesus.

EPHESIANS 3:16 KJV That he would grant you, ACCORDING TO THE RICHES OF HIS GLORY, to be STRENGTHENED with might by his Spirit IN THE INNER MAN;

  • FAITH, UTTERANCE, KNOWLEDGE, DILIGENCE, LOVE AND GIVING - 2 CORINTHIANS 8:6-7 KJV Insomuch that we desired Titus, that as he had begun, so he would also finish in you the same grace also. 7 Therefore, as ye abound in every thing, in FAITH, and UTTERANCE, and KNOWLEDGE, and in all DILIGENCE, and in your LOVE to us, see that ye ABOUND IN THIS GRACE also.

1 CORINTHIANS 1:4-5 KJV I thank my God always on your behalf, for the GRACE OF GOD which is given you by Jesus Christ; 5 That in every thing ye are enriched by him, in all UTTERANCE, and in all KNOWLEDGE 

  • REIGNING - ROMANS 5:17 KJV For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive ABUNDANCE OF GRACE and of the gift of righteousness SHALL REIGN in life by one, Jesus Christ.)
  • PROPHECY (INSPIRED UTTERANCE), MINISTRY (SERVING), TEACHING (CLARITY OF UNDERSTANDING), EXHORTATION (INSPIRED ENCOURAGEMENT), GIVING (SOWING), RULING (LEADERSHIP), MERCY - ROMANS 12:3-14 KJV For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith. [4] For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: [5] So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another. [6] Having then GIFTS differing ACCORDING TO THE GRACE that is given to us, whether PROPHECY, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; [7] Or MINISTRY, let us wait on our ministering: or he that TEACHETH, on teaching; [8] Or he that EXHORTETH, on exhortation: he that GIVETH, let him do it with simplicity; he that RULETH, with diligence; he that SHEWETH MERCY, with cheerfulness.  [9] Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good. [10] Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another; [11] NOT SLOTHFUL IN BUSINESS; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord; [12] Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer; [13] Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality. [14] Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not.

GROUP DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

Take a few moments to discuss your answers to these questions with the Group.

 

ICE BREAKER  

What really makes you laugh?

 

MY MEMOIR STORIES

IMPORTANT:  If the Group would like to continue telling one Memoir Story per week until they are completed, that might allow for a more congruent transition. Please be sensitive to the Science of Freedom content and discussion. It is important that our people are exposed to the possibilities in their potential that this content will provide. Please take no more than 20-25 minutes for the Memoir to leave time for the rest of the content below.

MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEET at the linkThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)You can also watch the WRAP UP video from last week that explains how to use the worksheet. Each person's Memoir should be 10-15 minutes long.

 

QUESTIONS

REMEMBER, you don’t need to be the experts of this content. Our desire is that you begin a conversation with the Group. Be a great facilitator by helping everyone process the content, even if they don’t agree with it.

IMPORTANT – The questions are guides for conversation. It is NOT important that all, or even most, of these questions are completed.

  1. After watching Session 8’s video, what is your biggest takeaway, “ah ha” moment, or challenging thought? Why?
  2. Describe the emotions or thoughts you are processing when you think of death and the curses of human suffering as being an issue of spirit-being-nature.
  3. Describe the emotions or thoughts you are processing when you think of being “born again,” or having a “new birth.”
  4. What are ways a person can apply and build this life-nature into their consciousness, to renew the mind, bringing about transformation in everyday life?

 

SESSION 8 - WRAP UP

This is a 5-10 minute section for MOVING FORWARDGOING DEEPER, use of worksheets and periodic church-wide announcements.

 

MOVE FORWARD

Receive the challenge to “move forward” by applying what was learned this week.

SUGGESTIONS:

1.    IF YOU HAVEN'T ALREADY, PREPARE TO TELL YOUR STORY, your MEMOIR, to the rest of us over the next few weeks. Use the MY MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEETThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)

2.    PRAY FOR GROUP MEMBER - Pray for at least one person in the Group. Try to identify someone who hasn't been prayed for, or given an encouraging Scripture. Don't worry about feeling inadequate as a prayer. No one feels like they are professional prayers, at least not when they look into eyes of the Almighty God. Praying the Scriptures over people is the best way to learn how to pray effectively. Simply find a Scripture, put the person's name in the text, and pray those words out loud. Then ask the Lord to help you think of things to say to Him about them that would help their lives. 

3.    ASK FOR A SCRIPTURE WORD - Ask God to give you a Scripture to give them to encourage, comfort and edify them. You can Google search "God's Promises" and find a plethora of appropriate texts. Look for one that seems to give you a spark of energy as you think about the person you have been praying for.

4.    DELIVER THE WORD TO THEM - Then send them an email, text or phone call to encourage them. This is how the Holy Spirit works in our lives. As you practice these movements you will expand your own capacity with God, all while giving people much needed hope and strength. 

 

GOING DEEPER

Encouragement to engage theFULL WORKSHOP SEMESTER experience. While this is not required, nor is the Group discussions connected to the full workshop, it is an option for everyone.


PRAYER / DISMISS GROUP

Prayer time with the Group.

Comment

SESSION 7 - THE MESSIANIC PROPHECIES OF PEACE AND PROSPERITY

Comment

SESSION 7 - THE MESSIANIC PROPHECIES OF PEACE AND PROSPERITY

GROUP VIDEO

Today we look at how the messianic prophesies project our peace and prosperity. We look at:

  • How neuro-psychological attachment styles influence our projection-image of God
  • How being a joint-heir with Jesus clarifies our inheritance
  • How the Year of Jubilee is no longer a year, but a person, Jesus Christ

 

SESSION 7 - GROUP VIDEO

Watch 10-20 minutes of a GROUP video teaching, that correlates with the full Workshop semester topics.         

GROUP CONVERSATION GUIDE

WHAT IS PEACE?

The Hebrew word translated into the word “peace” is the word “shalom” – Holistically functional, healthy, prosperous, wealthy; complete functionality.

Redemption drills down into the root system of our identity. The restoration of our identity is the restoration of our heart and the limbic brain. From there our natural flow surges to core/emotional beliefs, consuming thoughts/emotions and compulsive behaviors (healthy or destructive).

This course in Redemption is rebuilding your identity, so the core/emotional beliefs are reprogrammed, giving way for positive energy to our subconscious thoughts and compelled behaviors.

Redemption changes everything:

  • It changes how we view God
  • It changes how we view ourselves
  • It changes how we view others
  • It changes how we interpret life

Jesus came to settle in our minds the disposition of God towards us; His attitude, His “will,” and His mood to you, as well as the things that threaten you.

 

FOUR ATTACHMENT STYLES

In neuro-psychology there are four ways our brains develop an approach to relational attachment. We are healthiest and happiest when we are securely attached to the people around us. We are increasingly stressed and malfunctioned as we view the relationships of our lives as being insecure. The attachment template we have developed took it’s evolutionary perimeters from our childhood experiences with our primary nurturer, usually our mothers. These are the four ways our brains bond to those around us:

  • Securely Attached – The fear circuits for betrayal, rejection and abandonment are minimal, allowing a person to be at peace in the relationships they are in.
  • Anxiously Attached – The fear circuits fire off phantom warnings that relationships are not safe, anticipating them to betray, reject or abandon, causing the person to hyper-react in hopes of being “enough” for others to stay committed.
  • Avoidantly Attached – From experiences of instability in relationships and nurture the brain reroutes the meeting of personal needs from one of either interdependence (like securely attached people), or dependence (like anxiously attached people), to independence, causing a person to meet their own needs separate from the support of others.
  • Confused Attachment – When a person experiences abuses (verbal, physical, sexual, etc.) their brains become chaotic and confused, never knowing what to expect where getting appropriate nurture is concerned, causing a person to be erratic in their connections with the people in their lives.   

How do you attach to God the Father? Are you securely attached to God? Are you anxiously attached to God? Are you avoidantly attached to God? Or are you confused in your attachment to God?

 

These attachments styles in you

will cause a projection of who you think God is,

even if it isn’t accurate.

 

Our spiritual identity, how we attach with God impacts every area of our prayers, faith, spiritual authority, and mission.

Redemption shows that we really don’t have to beg God for blessings, because it is already established as a provision for us.

 

THE MESSIANIC PROPHECIES AND PROVISION

ISAIAH 53:4-12 NIV  4 Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted. 5 But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us PEACE was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. 6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all. 7 He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth. 8 By oppression and judgment he was taken away. And who can speak of his descendants? For he was cut off from the land of the living; for the transgression of my people he was stricken. 9 He was assigned a grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death, though he had done no violence, nor was any deceit in his mouth. 10 Yet it was the Lord's will to crush him and cause him to suffer, and though the Lord makes his life a guilt offering, he will see his offspring and prolong his days, and the will of the Lord will prosper in his hand. 11 After the suffering of his soul, he will see the light of life and be satisfied; by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many, and he will bear their iniquities. 12 Therefore I will give him a portion among the great, and he will divide the spoils with the strong, because he poured out his life unto death, and was numbered with the transgressors. For he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

Jesus willing submitted to and received the legal punishment for our peace (shalom)!

Verse twelve in The Amplified Bible says, “Therefore will I divide Him a portion with the great [kings and rulers], and He shall divide the spoil with the mighty….”

 

CHRISTIANS ARE THE JOINT-HEIRS TO THE PORTION

ROMANS 8:16–17 KJV The Spirit itself [Himself] beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: 17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

Christ became the embodiment of all our portion. In Redemption he made us joint-heirs to the spoil. All the peace, strength, wisdom, wholeness, prosperity and functionality is a part of our inheritance. The inheritance is NOT something we must ask for, or beg for, or determine the veracity of by our experiences; this inheritance is ours whether we ever access it or not.

ISAIAH 61:1-9 NKJV "The Spirit of the Lord GOD [is] upon Me, Because the LORD has anointed Me To preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives, And the opening of the prison to [those who are] bound; 2 To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, And the day of vengeance of our God; To comfort all who mourn, 3 To console those who mourn in Zion, To give them beauty for ashes, The oil of joy for mourning, The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; That they may be called trees of righteousness, The planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified." 4 And they shall rebuild the old ruins, They shall raise up the former desolations, And they shall repair the ruined cities, The desolations of many generations. 5 Strangers shall stand and feed your flocks, And the sons of the foreigner [Shall be] your plowmen and your vinedressers. 6 But you shall be named the priests of the LORD, They shall call you the servants of our God. You shall eat the riches of the Gentiles, And in their glory you shall boast. 7 Instead of your shame [you shall have] double [honor], And [instead of] confusion they shall rejoice in their portion. Therefore in their land they shall possess double; Everlasting joy shall be theirs. 8 "For I, the LORD, love justice; I hate robbery for burnt offering; I will direct their work in truth, And will make with them an everlasting covenant. 9 Their descendants shall be known among the Gentiles, And their offspring among the people. All who see them shall acknowledge them, That they [are] the posterity [whom] the LORD has blessed."

  • Messiah (Hebrew)/Christ (Greek) means, “the anointed one and his anointing.”
  • Anointing means, “to rub on or pour over.”

Usually a ceremony of anointing someone included olive oil being rubbed on someone, or poured over their head. Olive oil was a metaphoric symbol of God’s Holy Spirit, or God’s presence, being put on someone. Literally, it meant the rubbing on of God, His wisdom and miraculous abilities. The Isaiah 61 text is referencing the coming of a Messiah. Historically, everyone knew this text referenced such a huge figure coming to deliver God’s people.

Jesus is the fulfillment as “the Anointed One.” He is the Christ, or the Messiah. He has God’s presence all over himself to fulfill the prophetic texts.

PHILIPPIANS 2:6-8 AMPC Who [Jesus], although being essentially one with God and in the form of God [possessing the fullness of the attributes which make God God], did not think this equality with God was a thing to be eagerly grasped or retained, 7 BUT STRIPPED HIMSELF [OF ALL PRIVILEGES AND RIGHTFUL DIGNITY], so as to assume the guise of a servant (slave), in that He became like men and was born a human being. 8 And after He had appeared in human form, He abased and humbled Himself [still further] and carried His obedience to the extreme of death, even the death of the cross!

PHILIPPIANS 2:7 NLT Instead, HE GAVE UP HIS DIVINE PRIVILEGES; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When he appeared in human form...

ACTS 10:38 NKJV [Peter said], "how God ANOINTED Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.

 

THE ACCEPTABLE YEAR OF THE LORD 

LEVITICUS 25:10, 13 NKJV 'And you shall consecrate the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout [all] the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a Jubilee for you; and each of you shall return to his possession, and each of you shall return to his family. ... 13 'In this Year of Jubilee, each of you shall return to his possession.

Jesus proclaimed that TODAY is your acceptable year of the Lord (Luke 4:19–21). What is “the acceptable year of the Lord?” According to Levitical Law, there was a feast and celebration to be observed every fiftieth year called, “the Year of Jubilee” or “the acceptable year of the Lord.” This feast and celebration was for the full restoration of individuals to their previous possessions.

The Year of Jubilee was when the people of God would work for seven cycles of seven years, then in the forty-ninth year everything that was lost through bad business decisions and failings would be restored. The Year of Jubilee embodies this system of forgiveness and restoration.

JESUS: OUR JUBILEE

LUKE 4:16-21 NKJV So He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up. And as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read. 17 And He was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written: 18 "The Spirit of the LORD [is] upon Me, Because He has anointed Me To preach the gospel to [the] poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to [the] captives And recovery of sight to [the] blind, To set at liberty those who are oppressed; 19 To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD." 20 Then He closed the book, and gave [it] back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all who were in the synagogue were fixed on Him. 21 And He began to say to them, "Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing."

The Year of Jubilee, or the Acceptable Year of the Lord, is no longer a year; it is a person, Jesus Christ! When we become joint-heirs with Jesus, or “a new creature in Christ,” we live in a perpetual Year of Jubilee.

 

THE MESSIAH WAS PROPHESIED TO BRING HIS PEOPLE PROSPERITY

ISAIAH 61:5-9 NKJV Strangers shall stand and feed your flocks, And the sons of the foreigner [Shall be] your plowmen and your vinedressers. 6 But you shall be named the priests of the LORD, They shall call you the servants of our God. You shall eat the riches of the Gentiles, And in their glory you shall boast. 7 Instead of your shame [you shall have] double [honor], And [instead of] confusion they shall rejoice in their portion. Therefore in their land they shall possess double; Everlasting joy shall be theirs. 8 "For I, the LORD, love justice; I hate robbery for burnt offering; I will direct their work in truth, And will make with them an everlasting covenant. 9 Their descendants shall be known among the Gentiles, And their offspring among the people. All who see them shall acknowledge them, That they [are] the posterity [whom] the LORD has blessed."

To conclude from these texts that the “blessing” that the Messiah brings would exclude material prosperity is being either incompetent or irresponsible to the text. Anything you could possibly need as a human, any necessary resource, is “in Christ” or a part of our covenant “portion.”

 

SIN AND THE CURSE; REDEMPTION AND BLESSING

Once again, in Scripture, where ever you see sin, open and unatoned/unredeemed sin, you see the associated “curses,” that include poverty, oppression and victimization. Wherever you see forgiveness of sin, atoned/redeemed sin, you see the associated “blessings,” that include material prosperity, protection and overall peace.

When our experience is different than what we know is our portion in Redemption, we don’t change Redemption to accommodate our experience. Redemption is separate from our experience. Redemption is Redemption and experience is experience. To assume if something is in Redemption it automates into our experience would mean that every human being is now “saved” because Jesus died for the sins of the whole world (1 John 2:1-2). Yet all human beings only experience Redemption through the contingency of their own free moral choice to access it by faith. In the same way, a Christian can live with no depth of experience around their Redemptive portion, yet it be God’s passionate “will” that they do. Our struggle to receive God’s experiences is never to be equated with God’s will concerning those experiences.


GROUP DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

Take a few moments to discuss your answers to these questions with the Group.

 

ICE BREAKER  

What’s one fear you know has been holding you back? Give a scenario that you remember when this happened.

 

MY MEMOIR STORIES

IMPORTANT:  If the Group would like to continue telling one Memoir Story per week until they are completed, that might allow for a more congruent transition. Please be sensitive to the Science of Freedom content and discussion. It is important that our people are exposed to the possibilities in their potential that this content will provide. Please take no more than 20-25 minutes for the Memoir to leave time for the rest of the content below.

MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEET at the linkThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)You can also watch the WRAP UP video from last week that explains how to use the worksheet. Each person's Memoir should be 10-15 minutes long.

 

QUESTIONS

REMEMBER, you don’t need to be the experts of this content. Our desire is that you begin a conversation with the Group. Be a great facilitator by helping everyone process the content, even if they don’t agree with it.

IMPORTANT – The questions are guides for conversation. It is NOT important that all, or even most, of these questions are completed.

  1. After watching Session 7’s video, what is your biggest takeaway, “ah ha” moment, or challenging thought? Why?
  2. Of the four neuro-psychological attachment styles, secure, anxious, avoidant or confused, which best describes you? (You can take a simple marginal assessment, that takes about 4 minutes, here http://www.web-research-design.net/cgi-bin/crq/crq.pl . Or you can take a much more credible one that takes 20 minutes at https://testyourself.psychtests.com/testid/2859 )
  3. How has your attachment style impacted the way you project God? When things don’t go well in life do you hyper-react to get God’s attention (anxious), turn and handle things on your own (avoidant), get stuck and unable to move while confusion fills your mind (confused), or turn to God knowing that He is working you through to the Redemptive experiences He so passionately wants for you (secure)?
  4. How do the prophetic texts about the Messiah impact your emotional security, aware of God’s cemented provision available in Christ?   

 

SESSION 7 - WRAP UP

This is a 5-10 minute section for MOVING FORWARDGOING DEEPER, use of worksheets and periodic church-wide announcements.

 

MOVE FORWARD

Receive the challenge to “move forward” by applying what was learned this week.

SUGGESTIONS:

1.    IF YOU HAVEN'T ALREADY, PREPARE TO TELL YOUR STORY, your MEMOIR, to the rest of us over the next few weeks. Use the MY MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEETThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)

2.    PRAY FOR GROUP MEMBER - Pray for at least one person in the Group. Try to identify someone who hasn't been prayed for, or given an encouraging Scripture. Don't worry about feeling inadequate as a prayer. No one feels like they are professional prayers, at least not when they look into eyes of the Almighty God. Praying the Scriptures over people is the best way to learn how to pray effectively. Simply find a Scripture, put the person's name in the text, and pray those words out loud. Then ask the Lord to help you think of things to say to Him about them that would help their lives. 

3.    ASK FOR A SCRIPTURE WORD - Ask God to give you a Scripture to give them to encourage, comfort and edify them. You can Google search "God's Promises" and find a plethora of appropriate texts. Look for one that seems to give you a spark of energy as you think about the person you have been praying for.

4.    DELIVER THE WORD TO THEM - Then send them an email, text or phone call to encourage them. This is how the Holy Spirit works in our lives. As you practice these movements you will expand your own capacity with God, all while giving people much needed hope and strength. 

 

GOING DEEPER

Encouragement to engage the FULL WORKSHOP SEMESTER experience. While this is not required, nor is the Group discussions connected to the full workshop, it is an option for everyone.


PRAYER / DISMISS GROUP

Prayer time with the Group.

Comment

SESSION 6 - HOW REDEMPTION DEFINES OUR PROSPERITY

Comment

SESSION 6 - HOW REDEMPTION DEFINES OUR PROSPERITY

GROUP VIDEO

Today we look at the controversial topic of Biblical Prosperity:

  • Biblically defining "blessings" and "cursings"
  • How the "system" of Redemption reveals God's extravagant provision
  • The impact of God's extravagant provision on our attachment to Him
  • The origin of poverty, lack and need
  • Wasn't Jesus poor?
  • What about covetousness and greed?

 

SESSION 6 - GROUP VIDEO

Watch 10-20 minutes of a GROUP video teaching, that correlates with the full Workshop semester topics.         

GROUP CONVERSATION GUIDE

Today we talk about a controversial topic, PROSPERITY!

  • Encouragement: Set aside all previous preconditioned ideas, so we can take an unbiased look at Scripture.

QUESTION:  Does God want you to prosper?

Doubts, Myths and More Questions:

  • Wasn’t Jesus poor?
  • Wasn’t the Apostle Paul poor?
  • Doesn’t the Bible warn against greed and covetousness?

The way we answer these questions impacts our sense of identity. We aren’t really talking about prosperity here; we are talking about attachment to God. We are talking about…

  • Who is God?
  • Who are you?
  • Who are the people around you?
  • Where do you fit in the social construct?
  • What/who can you count on?

If we don’t know God’s unrelenting attitude towards us, both relationally and provisionally, we will inadvertently fall into an insecure attachment style; anxious, avoidant or confused. God's love and desire for your goodness is ferocious, unchanging and exhaustive!

The topic of God’s provision, including the promise of prosperity, is best viewed through the lens of attachment, “can we securely count on God to provide.”

GALATIANS 3:13,14,29 Christ hath REDEEMED us from THE CURSE OF THE LAW, being made a curse for us, for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangs on a tree: That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith...And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.

Within the violation of the law is the curse of that broken law. The curses are...

  • Physical
  • Emotional/psychological
  • Material/financial
  • Social

But Christ has Redeemed us from the curse of the law. So Christ has Redeemed us from physical, emotional/psychological, material/financial and social need.

 

DEFINING “BLESSINGS” AND “CURSINGS”:

We have to define and interpret Scripture with Scripture. In Deuteronomy 28:1-68 we have a clear delineation as to what a “blessing” and what a “cursing” is. Throughout Scripture sickness, emotional/psychological disorder, poverty or victimization (of any kind) is never … ever … labeled as a “blessing!” God HATES human suffering! He is not in collusion with Satan, not even an ambivalent "allowing" of such things. Such concepts are an insult to the goodness of God!

Sickness, emotional/psychological disorder, poverty and victimization are always clearly defined as a “curse.” Even in more ancillary texts, they are assumed, as though common sense would affirm the gravity of their inordinance. Even though, many today will argue that sometimes God uses these same “curses” to “bless” His people.

DEUTERONOMY 28:1-68 NIV If you fully obey the LORD your God and carefully follow all his commands I give you today, the LORD your God will set you high above all the nations on earth. 2 All these blessings will come upon you and accompany you if you obey the LORD your God:

  • 4 Have a fertile womb; crops and livestock will be blessed
  • 5 Your business will be blessed
  • 7 The Lord will protect you from your enemies
  • 8 You will be blessed in bank accounts and other storage houses of blessing; thecircumstances of economies won’t matter to you
  • 9 The LORD will establish you as his holy people, as he promised you on oath, if you keep the commands of the LORD your God and walk in his ways.
  • 13 The LORD will make you the head, not the tail. 

DEUTERONOMY 28:15 However, if you do not obey the LORD your God and do not carefully follow all his commands and decrees I am giving you today, all these curses will come upon you and overtake you:

  • 17 You won’t enjoy your work/labor
  • 18 You won’t be able to get pregnant, and you will struggle in both finances and vocational successes
  • 20 You will lack of peace, wisdom and clear decision-making and have no safety or protection or security of future
  • 21 You will have sickness, disease and physical weakness
  • 23 Nothing will be easy, no favor, no momentum
  • 24 Opportunities will be hard, impossible, and hopeless
  • 25 Shame, regret, oppression will be the norm along with fear, faithlessness, question, skepticism
  • 26 You will experience isolation, aloneness, separation
  • 28 You will have darkness, confusion, mental and psychological breakdowns
  • 29 You will have complete failure and be victimized with nor oversight or justice
  • 30 Your spouse will be given to sexual rape.
  • 31 Your dreams will be taken from you
  • 32 You will experience literal and spiritual child abductions
  • 34 You will find yourself meditating on your regrets and intense emotions of injustice
  • 36 Your religion will not make sense but be forced upon you
  • 37 You will have embarrassment, shame, rejection, humiliation
  • 38 Everything will be against you and nothing will work out for you
  • 39 Unforeseen, pest-like things will spring up. When you do everything right, something will happen to undermine it.
  • 40 You hopes will begin to get up. But in the last minute you will have them crushed.
  • 41 You will be captivity to drugs, alcohol, to people/spouses who don’t like you, literal child abductions, kidnappings, etc.
  • 42 New and multiplied problems will arise from places you will be surprised by
  • 43 Everyone else gets promoted and are favored over you, while you continue to stagnate and find no favor
  • 44 Others will be in control over you and have tentacles that harass your life
  • 46 Your failure will not be merely natural, you will have miracle level and supernatural failure.
  • 48 Your work and vocation will be intense with oppression
  • 50 Life will have no compassion or empathy from anyone who has the human power to change it)
  • 61 Any disaster that can be conceived will happen to you

 

WHAT ARE THE “CURSES” OF DEUTERONOMY 28?

  • Fear
  • Confusion
  • Faulty thought processes
  • Foolishness
  • Distance from God
  • Shame
  • Embarrassment
  • Humiliation
  • Addictions
  • Hiding
  • Guilt
  • Inferiority
  • Timidity
  • Hard heartedness
  • Unclean conscience
  • Hating work/labor
  • Can’t get pregnant
  • Financial / vocational failure
  • Darkness mentally
  • No safety or protection or security
  • Sickness, disease, and physical weakness
  • Everything is hard, no momentum, things are impossible
  • Regret
  • Oppression
  • Rejection
  • Anxiety
  • Faithlessness
  • Skepticism
  • Isolation, aloneness, separation
  • Psychological breakdown
  • Victimization
  • No justice
  • Child abductions / kidnappings
  • Rape of life (literally and figuratively)
  • Harassment
  • Supernatural failure
  • Despair
  • Etc

 

THE SYSTEM OF REDEMPTION

Where there is open sin, unatoned sin, there is the presence of these curses.

Where there is forgiveness of sin, atoned/redeemed sin, there is the presence of blessings.

REMEMBER:  We are not assuming that a person’s experience of a curse means they are in some kind of sin. We are saying that legally, in God’s own frame of mind, it is an injustice for the curse to impede on the lives of those who are forgiven. There are other factors to consider, beyond God’s will and positive attitude towards us. In the same way God is passionate for people to experience His forgiveness, though many do not, so it is with these other blessings. God can desire things in our lives, yet we continue to lack experience in them. Factors related to the human heart are very important here. The heart is where we “receive” all of God’s blessings. Faith, motives, attitudes, tenderness/hardness, etc. all effect our experiential outcomes.

 

THE ORIGIN OF POVERTY, LACK AND NEED

From the increase of the land to the created treasures in the earth, this garden was fully prosperous. The earth was abundantly supplied all the way down to the gold, bdellium and onyx stone (Genesis 2:12). When Adam sinned the “curse” was introduced to the earth. The “curse” was death, and by sequence, anything that evolves towards death.

GENESIS 2:8, 10-13 NKJV The LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden, and there He put the man whom He had formed… 10 Now a river went out of EDEN to water the garden, and from there it parted and became four riverheads. 11 The name of the first is Pishon; it is the one which skirts the whole land of Havilah, where there is GOLD. 12 And the GOLD of that land is good. BDELLIUM and the ONYX STONE are there.

GENESIS 2:16-17 NKJV And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, "Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; 17 "but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely DIE."

GENESIS 3:6-11, 21 NKJV So when the woman saw that the tree [was] good for food, that it [was] pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make [one] wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they [were] naked; and THEY SEWED FIG LEAVES together and made themselves coverings. 8 And they heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden. 9 Then the LORD God called to Adam and said to him, "Where [are] you?" 10 So he said, "I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself." 11 And He said, "WHO TOLD YOU THAT YOU [WERE] NAKED? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you that you should not eat?" ... 21 Also for Adam and his wife the LORD GOD MADE TUNICS OF SKIN, and clothed them.

ROMANS 5:12 Wherefore, as by ONE MAN SIN ENTERED into the world, and DEATH BY SIN; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:

 

WASN’T JESUS POOR?

  • Deuteronomy 28 - Jesus lived completely righteous under the Old Covenant
  • He started with gold, frankincense and myrrh
  • Jesus sought first God’s Kingdom (Mat 6:33)
  • Jesus had a treasury (Jn 12) / Jesus had a treasurer
  • Enough to support a full-time staff of 12, and part time of 70
  • Judas stole from treasury, but no one knew
  • Jesus gave to the poor (Jn 13:29)
  • Jesus distinguished himself from the poor (Jn 12:8)
  • People gave of their substance to his ministry (Lk 8)
  • Jesus had a house in a resort city big enough to entertain guests (Jn 1:35-39)
  • Jesus wore expensive clothing (Jn 19)
  • Jesus BECAME poor – when??

 

WHEN DID JESUS BECOME POOR?

Jesus became poor when he became the curse of sin.

GALATIANS 3:13,14,29 Christ hath REDEEMED us from THE CURSE OF THE LAW, BEING MADE A CURSE FOR US, for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangs on a tree: That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith...And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.

2 CORINTHIANS 5:21 NKJV For He [God] made Him [Jesus Christ] who knew no sin TO BE SIN FOR US, that WE MIGHT BECOME THE RIGHTEOUSNESS of God in Him [Christ].

2 CORINTHIANS 8:9 For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes HE BECAME POOR, that ye through his poverty MIGHT BE RICH.

Jesus became poor when he became the curse, when he became sin. Jesus was made sin on Calvary’s Cross. This is in contrast to the ideas that Jesus became poor when he moved to earth, taking on a baby’s body. To be consistent we must embrace the idea that Jesus became poor on the Cross, when he was stripped of all earthly goods, hanging with nothing but a loin cloth on that Cross.

In the same way, we were made righteous. When? We were made righteous at the time Jesus was made sin. We were “blessed” when Jesus was made the “curse.” We were made “rich” when Jesus was made “poor.”

 

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE “RICH?”

“Rich” is NOT quantifiable by amounts. “Rich” means that we have an unlimited supply of resource available to us.

“Prosperity” is NOT about what you amass physically. “Prosperity” is about the ability to access resources to meet any need. All of these resources are “in Christ.”

PHILIPPIANS 4:19 NKJV And my God shall supply all YOUR NEED according to HIS RICHES IN GLORY BY CHRIST JESUS.

Biblical “prosperity” means that we are no longer waiting on God to DO something; we are accessing what God has already done in Christ. “Prosperity” means God’s mind is eternally cemented; you will never have to talk God into meeting your need. The issue is accessing what is in Redemption. To beg God, or to be ambivalent to God’s provision in Redemption, is in essence demeaning the work of Christ in our lives.

Some people focus purely on issues of:

  • “So are you saying Christians can own cars like Maseratis?”
  • “Does this mean God wants Christians to wear Rolex watches?”
  • “Are you saying the Gospel is about increasing your financial portfolio?”

All of these questions miss the point!! These are bad questions, and bad questions always get bad answers. Our focus isn’t on cars, homes, watches, jets, or the pursuit of more and more convenience. Our focus is simply on living out the Great Commission, reaching the lost, discipling the believer and caring for the poor – through the finished work of Redemption. Redemption has given us complete and unlimited resources to fulfill these assignments, all found in Christ.

 

GOD’S PASSIONATE ATTITUDE

Some people say, “God doesn’t mind if you prosper.” That is a horrible understatement. What if someone said, “God doesn’t mind if you receive forgiveness”? That would be an offensive statement, because we know what it costs God to send Jesus to be crucified and raised from the dead on our behalf. God is passionate about His desire for us to receive forgiveness. In the same way, God is passionate for us to receive His prosperity. The issue is NOT about material stuff, it is about Redemption; it is about our attachment to a relational God who is extravagant in His personality.

 

WHAT ABOUT COVETOUSNESS AND GREED?

The root of covetousness and greed is unrelated to what material possessions you have, or don’t have. The root of covetousness and greed is fear and unbelief that God is your ultimate source.   

The Apostle Paul addresses this idea of people pursuing material gain through human efforts, rather than being established in Redemption’s provision. When you read the word “rich” below, separate these people from those who are established in Redemption’s provision. The sorrow and destruction mentioned below are NOT associated with simply having material blessings; it is from motives, attitudes and unbelief towards God. “Loving money” is in contrast to loving God (Mat 6:24).

1 TIMOTHY 6:9-10, 17-19 NKJV But those who desire to be RICH fall into temptation and a snare, and [into] many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. 10 For the LOVE OF MONEY is a root of all [kinds of] evil, for which some have STRAYED FROM THE FAITH in their GREEDINESS, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. ... 17 Command those who are rich in this present age not to be haughty, nor to trust in uncertain riches but in the living God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy. 18 [Let them] do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to give, willing to share, 19 storing up for themselves a good foundation for the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life. 

Notice, the opposite of covetousness and greed is “straying from the faith.” You are only covetous and greedy when you don’t believe God has, or will, meet your need. The opposite of covetousness and greed is NOT having stuff. The opposite is unbelief, that makes way for survival level fear. If covetousness and greed was focused on simply having material goods, then in verse 17 the commandment would be to tell the rich to get rid of their stuff. However, the command is to exercise the heart in generosity, moving the heart towards faith in God.

The “love of money” is not the same as accessing money through Redemption. In fact, the only way to access money through Redemption is through faith. The best way to insulate from “the love of money” is to become established in Redemption, accessing prosperity by faith in God’s accomplished supply.


GROUP DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

Take a few moments to discuss your answers to these questions with the Group.

 

ICE BREAKER   

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

 

MY MEMOIR STORIES

IMPORTANT:  If the Group would like to continue telling one Memoir Story per week until they are completed, that might allow for a more congruent transition. Please be sensitive to the Science of Freedom content and discussion. It is important that our people are exposed to the possibilities in their potential that this content will provide. Please take no more than 20-25 minutes for the Memoir to leave time for the rest of the content below.

MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEET at the linkThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)You can also watch the WRAP UP video from last week that explains how to use the worksheet. Each person's Memoir should be 10-15 minutes long.

 

QUESTIONS

REMEMBER, you don’t need to be the experts of this content. Our desire is that you begin a conversation with the Group. Be a great facilitator by helping everyone process the content, even if they don’t agree with it.

IMPORTANT – The questions are guides for conversation. It is NOT important that all, or even most, of these questions are completed.

  1. After watching Session 6’s Video, what is your biggest takeaway, “ah ha” moment, or challenging thought? Why?
  2. What emotions come up for you as you hear that God is passionate about your prosperity? Does this topic, in the way we presented it, threaten your previous profile of God? What emotions are present when you hear these things?
  3. What Christian beliefs about God’s provision – or poverty, lack and need - have influenced your beliefs? Share your background story of understanding God’s will concerning your material provision.
  4. Share your thoughts about Jesus’ financial portfolio, that maybe he wasn’t poor like many have believed. How does this revision of Jesus impact you in your beliefs and emotions?
  5. Share your thoughts about covetousness and greed, specifically as an issue of fear and unbelief? How do you wrestle against these in your own life?

 

SESSION 6 - WRAP UP

This is a 5-10 minute section for MOVING FORWARDGOING DEEPER, use of worksheets and periodic church-wide announcements.

 

MOVE FORWARD

Receive the challenge to “move forward” by applying what was learned this week.

SUGGESTIONS:

1.    IF YOU HAVEN'T ALREADY, PREPARE TO TELL YOUR STORY, your MEMOIR, to the rest of us over the next few weeks. Use the MY MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEETThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)

2.    PRAY FOR GROUP MEMBER - Pray for at least one person in the Group. Try to identify someone who hasn't been prayed for, or given an encouraging Scripture. Don't worry about feeling inadequate as a prayer. No one feels like they are professional prayers, at least not when they look into eyes of the Almighty God. Praying the Scriptures over people is the best way to learn how to pray effectively. Simply find a Scripture, put the person's name in the text, and pray those words out loud. Then ask the Lord to help you think of things to say to Him about them that would help their lives. 

3.    ASK FOR A SCRIPTURE WORD - Ask God to give you a Scripture to give them to encourage, comfort and edify them. You can Google search "God's Promises" and find a plethora of appropriate texts. Look for one that seems to give you a spark of energy as you think about the person you have been praying for.

4.    DELIVER THE WORD TO THEM - Then send them an email, text or phone call to encourage them. This is how the Holy Spirit works in our lives. As you practice these movements you will expand your own capacity with God, all while giving people much needed hope and strength. 

 

GOING DEEPER

Encouragement to engage the FULL WORKSHOP SEMESTER experience. While this is not required, nor is the Group discussions connected to the full workshop, it is an option for everyone.


PRAYER / DISMISS GROUP

Prayer time with the Group.

Comment

SESSION 5 - OVERCOMING TEXTUAL CONTRADICTION IN GOD'S GOODNESS

Comment

SESSION 5 - OVERCOMING TEXTUAL CONTRADICTION IN GOD'S GOODNESS

GROUP VIDEO

Today we look at how God has no contradictions in His nature. We ask:

  • How do we reconcile texts where God seems good, then in another text He seems raging, vengeful or punishing?
  • Did Jesus ever demonstrate rage, vengefulness and punishment to the crowds he healed and delivered? Shouldn't there be at least one example of Jesus telling a person they were sick/suffering because of God's will? 
  • How do we interpret stories of God's seeming abandonment, like Job, Paul's thorn in the flesh, Timothy's stomach ills, etc.?
  • How does God's goodness create for us an instinct for intimacy and secure attachment to Him?

SESSION 5 - GROUP VIDEO

Watch 10-20 minutes of a GROUP video teaching, that correlates with the full Workshop semester topics.         


GROUP CONVERSATION GUIDE

Redemption reveals the clear “will” of God, His predisposition, and His passion to us, in every situation of life.

 

God is GOOD...

ALL the time!

 

Questions to Answer:

  1. Who is God?
  2. Who are you?
  3. Who are the people around you?
  4. How do you fit in the social construct?
  5. How do you interpret life?

 

How you interpret the above questions will have a lot to do with the quality of life you are going to have.

 

What most people do

is interpret life

through their experiences.

 

EXPERIENCES SKEW OUR PERCEPTION OF GOD

When our EXPERIENCE of unanswered prayer dictates our interpretation of God, we will create a false belief such as:

  1. God abandoned me (distance, ambivalence, rejection, betrayal).
  2. God has a transcendent plan, that while violating a working definition of “His goodness,” however in the end is mysteriously a better path for me.

These two ways of interpreting God’s relationship to me, His commitment and security in my life, unfortunately elevate my experiences (which are either emotional or physical) to my highest revelation of God. It elevates experiences as my greatest authority, the governance of my life. It assumes that God’s perfection is equal to the perfection of my experiences. That then assumes that if my experiences are imperfect then my view of God becomes imperfect. If my experiences are flawed, or my human ability to interpret those experiences are flawed, then God’s will in my life is equally flawed. There is NO WAY to establish a secure attachment to God with these flawed possibilities.

 

REDEMPTION: A SECURE INTERPRETATION

Redemption takes the God’s will out of subjective-experiential-interpretations and puts God's will into an objective-unchanging-interpretation. My experience and my human flaws have no ability to even adjust Redemption. Redemption is the only way to gain a secure attachment to God.

God’s passion to send His son, Jesus Christ, to earth and the cross, is equal to His will to Redeem ALL mankind. God’s will, revealed in Redemption, is never passive, but wholly passionate. 

  • God is wholly passionate about the forgiveness of your sin!
  • God is wholly passionate about the healing of your body!
  • God is wholly passionate about the provision of your need!
  • God is wholly passionate about the protection of your person, family and assets!
  • God is wholly passionate about His favor on your life!
  • God is wholly passionate about His wisdom, understanding and counsel being integrated into your life!

These issues in God’s will are core and central to His heart; not ancillary, marginal or passive. God is as passionate for these things in every person’s life as He is to forgive and save.

 

SIN AND DEATH

In Scripture, where you see sin, open sin, or unatoned/unredeemed sin, you see the presence of separation and death. There are three kinds of death listed in Scripture:

  1. Spiritual Death – The separation of the spirit from God, who is Life
  2. Physical Death – The separation of the spirit of man (the real you) from the body
  3. Eternal Death – The eternal separation from God

Since the “wages of sin is death” - which means a person encounters a separation from God (the first death), which accentuates the reality of physical death (the second death), and finally will end in eternal death (the third death) – then anything that a person encounters leading towards any of these “deaths” is also a by-product of the original sin of Adam. In sequence then, the original sin of Adam is the source of all sickness, disease, oppression, lack, poverty, victimization, isolation and ignorance. These are as much the enemy of God as sin itself is. God hates them in our lives with the same passion He hates sin, because Adam’s sin catalyzed them into the human experience.

 

THE TWO MOST COMMON ILLUSTRATIONS

There are two primary illustrations God uses over and over to show the system of sin, human suffering and finally death. God chose to illustrate the system of sin with these two predominate experiences:  physical SICKNESS and material POVERTY. This isn’t because these two suffering experiences are more important than others, but because these two can be understood by all generations, whether educated or uneducated, whether from the developed world or underdeveloped.

Spiritual health, emotional health and relational health are much more complex to dissect, or to deeply show the impact of the system. Perhaps this is the reason God chose to emphasize physical sickness and the antithesis of healing, as well as material poverty and the antithesis of provision and prosperity. To deny these are commonly used in Scripture to illustrate the system of sin's impact is not only a show of incompetence and illiteracy of Scripture, but also it is also irresponsible.

 

THE CAUSE OF SICKNESS AND POVERTY

So throughout Scripture God shows sin, open sin, unatoned/unredeemed sin as the cause of physical sickness and material poverty. God also restores humanity by the alternate function of forgiveness of sin, physical healing and material prosperity. However, the system continues to show the synonymous nature of this forgiveness providing emotional health, relational health, wisdom, understanding, favor and ultimately, anything that is capable of being defined as a “blessing.” In parallel, God HATES sin, physical sickness, material poverty, emotional dysfunction, relational disconnection, ignorance, folly, isolation and separation. God is passionate about forgiveness of sin, physical healing, material prosperity, emotional health, wisdom, understanding, favor and all things “blessing.” And, this isn’t a mood inside of God’s emotional expression; this is the very nature of God expressed to humankind.  

The will of God is revealed in Redemption! Redemption is the greatest light and revelation of God we have. Redemption is the ONLY way to discover the final, authoritative and passionate will of God for you.

 

DISENTANGLING CONFLICTS IN SCRIPTURE

Redemption requires that we discover the nature of God, the character of God, who God really is. Once we establish what we believe about the nature and character of God we will begin to see conflicts; conflicts in various text describing human suffering of Biblical characters and God’s relationship to their suffering. We also see conflicts in our own experiences of suffering, as we process God’s relationship to both us an the suffering. This is where, for many Christians, God becomes Jekyll and Hyde; in one moment He is expressing one part of His nature (goodness) and in then in the next moment He is expressing the exact opposite (distance, ambivalence, raging vengeance). This conflict is problematic to our attachment to God. Many Christians, rather than differentiate, try to make these opposites co-exist inside God’s nature.

 

WHO IS GOD?

Who is God? What is His character?

  • GOD IS SELF-EXISTENT - The name “Jehovah” is a Hebrew word that describes God as being self-existent. Jehovah means, “I am that I am.” God is non-contingent. He doesn’t require any support or influence outside of Himself. All of God’s contentment, existence and choice is derived from within Himself.
  • GOD IS SOVEREIGN - God can do whatever He chooses without having to give an account of His actions to anyone. God is ultimate. He is the Head above all beings and things. He is above all. God’s sovereignty does not mean God has latitude to be random, unmeasured or unpredictable. God has revealed Himself as systematic, measured and predictable. This is His nature.
  • GOD IS OMNISCIENT - God knows everything. He has perfect knowledge of all things past, present and in the future. Nothing is hidden from God. God’s knowledge encompasses every dimension, both in spiritual and physical spaces. God’s knowledge includes complete accuracy of demons and angels, plans and strategies. His knowledge includes the complexity of people's motives, desires and a lifetime of trauma-based hyper-reactions. God’s knowledge of the future is perfect, including events, motives and causes.

 

HOW GOD'S NATURE SECURES GOD'S WILL

God, having a full knowledge of all things (His omniscience), chose (His sovereignty) to execute Redemption. God’s sovereign will is revealed in Redemption. Many people interpret the Sovereignty of God through their human suffering experiences; if good happens, or if bad happens, it all was a play of God’s sovereign nature. This puts God’s nature in conflict with His Redemptive work. It also assumes that God’s sovereignty only expresses in the moment, diminishing His omniscience. It also assumes that God’s will is always perfectly performed. We know that later isn’t true by virtue of each of our own lives being lived outside of God’s will; many of us have noted season's of hardened hearts, we fail to connect with believers in community, we turns away from demonstrating generosity, we ignore injustice and so much more. If God’s will was always perfectly accomplished we would not be seeing such disparity in our own lives. God’s sovereignty does not make Him contingent (issue of self-existence), nor does it reduce Him to limited knowledge of the moment (omniscience).

 

God’s nature

cannot be in conflict

with any other part of who He is.

 

Redemption, or the truth of the New Testament work of Christ, is the greatest revelation of God’s will we have. It is secure. It is constant. It is unmovable. God gave His best to establish our attachment to Him. Questions concerning God’s commitment to our relationship, insecurely attaching us to Him, is a manmade and religious concoction that undermines the power of Christ's Redemption.

 

Redemption IS the sovereign will of God!

 

GOD'S IMMUTABILITY (HE IS UNCHANGING)

Because God’s nature is self-existent and omniscient, He is never going to change. We call this “God's immutability.” He is unchangeable. Because He is self-existent, and because He already knows about any future circumstance in perfect knowledge, He will never have a need to change. God’s sovereignty then is His unchanging choice. Redemption settles, cements and solidifies His general will for all people for all eternity. NOTHING can change it!

God’s Redemptive will is incapable of being adjusted. To assume God’s will can be adjusted, through prayer, difficult circumstances or even human rebellion is to assume God is either "not self-existent," "not omniscient" or "not sovereign." His immutability reaffirms His self-existence, omniscience and sovereignty.

MALACHI 3:6 NKJV For I am the LORD, I DO NOT CHANGE;

JAMES 1:17 NKJV Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is NO VARIATION OR SHADOW OF TURNING.

 

GOD IS GOOD!

God is good all the time and every time! God doesn’t just “act” good; He is good in His nature. A foundational attribute of God is He does good because He is good! The goodness of God seems to be the sum total of all the attributes in God’s nature. We cannot separate what is good from God. In other words, you cannot have goodness without God, just as you cannot have God without goodness.

 

When you have attachment to GOD

you have attachment to GOODNESS.

 

Here are some Scriptures of God’s good nature:

MATTHEW 19:17 NKJV So Jesus said to him, "Why do you call Me GOOD? NO ONE IS GOOD BUT ONE, THAT IS, GOD.

EXODUS 33:19; 34:5-7 NKJV Then He said, "I will make all MY GOODNESS pass before you, and I will proclaim the name of the LORD before you. I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion." … 34:5 Now the LORD descended in the cloud and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name of the LORD. 6 And the LORD passed before him and proclaimed, "The LORD, the LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and ABOUNDING IN GOODNESS and truth, 7 "keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin…

PSALM 84:11 NKJV For the LORD God is a sun and shield; The LORD will give grace and glory; No GOOD thing will He withhold From those who walk uprightly. 

PSALM 16:2 NKJV O my soul, you have said to the LORD, "You are my Lord, MY GOODNESS is nothing apart from You."

 

GOD IS NEVER DRAINED OR WEARIED

God is never drained of goodness. Stress, chaos, human rebellion nor any other circumstance can wear God out. Because His strength is non-contingent, even crazy people and actions do not drain Him. God’s goodness abounds to us because He is fundamentally good, and His strength to express it is all-powerful (omnipotent). There is never a moment of weakness in God. There is a constancy in all things that are of the nature of God.

 

JESUS EXPRESSES GOD'S PERFECT GOODNESS

You can always see more clearly who God is by looking at the flow of energy and information from Jesus. Jesus always brought healing, deliverance, freedom, hope, joy, peace and blessing to people. In contrast, you don’t ever see Jesus vetting the crowds, separating some into groups of rationed blessings. Jesus never expresses goodness to people by telling them they must stay sick, bound, oppressed, hopeless, depressed, broken and deprived. This is the perfect definition of goodness. If you want to know what it means for God to be good then look at what it meant for Jesus to be good. It was, and still is, good to be completely made whole and victorious; it was never an expression of goodness to leave people in their pain.

Modern day twisting of theology has presented that God will deny blessing because He wants to teach us some transcendent wisdom, or that God wants to work out our tendencies towards rebellion. This is the antithesis of what Jesus exemplified. Good always, ALWAYS, means freedom and victory!

 

CONTRADICTIONS OF GOD'S CHARACTER AND WHAT TO DO WITH THEM

When we encounter conflicts in our biblical narratives we have to first look through the lens of Redemption and God’s attributes (His goodness) to interpret the text. Our final interpretation can never rob God of His goodness to people. If it does, we have a flawed/false interpretation. God will not get stuck in nuances. God is passionately desiring all people to be blessed by His absolute goodness. When people, even godly people, don’t experience God’s goodness (defined with freedom and victory), the experience is never to be interpreted as a change to God’s passionate will.

 

THE “WHAT ABOUT” SCRIPTURES?

A GUY NAMED JOB

The book of Job is about a man that lived as a contemporary of the legendary character, Abraham. Job is the first book ever written, though chronologically the book of Genesis comes first in history. Job had no Bible, a very limited revelation of God, with a very simple covenant with God. The entire chapter covers merely 9-12 months of Job’s entire life span. While Job is estimated to have lived for a total of somewhere between 200-250 years of age, at age 50-75 he had a period of 9-12 months of extreme suffering.

Job didn’t know how to interpret these overwhelming events of suffering. His ignorance of God's nature and covenants make most of what Job said to be baseless of facts. In the last chapters of the book, Job repents for all the crazy allegations he made. This is because of his faulty assumptions and skewed interpretation of his suffering.

JOB 42:1-6 NKJV Then Job answered the LORD and said: 2 "I know that You can do everything, And that no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You. 3 You asked, 'Who is this who hides counsel without knowledge?' Therefore I have uttered what I did not understand, Things too wonderful for me, which I did not know. 4 Listen, please, and let me speak; You said, 'I will question you, and you shall answer Me.' 5 "I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, But now my eye sees You. 6 Therefore I abhor myself, AND REPENT in dust and ashes."

Later in the book of James (New Testament), looking back at Job's story, James shares the take-away of why the book of Job is of importance.

JAMES 5:10-11 KJV Take, my brethren, the prophets, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience. 11 Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the PATIENCE OF JOB, and have seen THE END OF THE LORD; that THE LORD IS VERY PITIFUL, AND OF TENDER MERCY.

James clearly says it is the constancy of Job, to never turn his back on God, even though he didn’t understand the “why” of his suffering. Even Job's wife told him to curse God and die. While Job accused God of things that aren't accurate, even defaming God in his ignorance, Job never abandoned God.

The message of Job’s book is that if you stay faithful to God, even when you don’t understand why the suffering is happening, the end will be blessed of the Lord. In Job’s case, he experienced twice the blessing at the end of the suffering than he had had prior. The mercy of the Lord is again connected to God’s delivering and blessing work.

 

CONSIDERATIONS OF JOB

A few considerations of the book of Job are:

God didn’t “sell-out” Job to the devil.  At first glance it looks very strange and confusing.  The narrative appears to be something of a cosmic wager between God and the devil, one in which God is using Job and his family as pawns to win some sort of bet. Did God wager with the devil? Did God facetiously open Job’s life to the devil? Did God call Satan’s attention to the devil…kind of bait him in and said “How bad can we mess with Job before he breaks?”

JOB 1:6-12 NKJV Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came among them. 7 And the LORD said to Satan, "From where do you come?" So Satan answered the LORD and said, "From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking back and forth on it." 8 Then the LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil?" 9 So Satan answered the LORD and said, "Does Job fear God for nothing? 10 "Have You not made a hedge around him, around his household, and around all that he has on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. 11 "But now, stretch out Your hand and touch all that he has, and he will surely curse You to Your face!" 12 And the LORD said to Satan, "Behold, all that he has is in your power; only do not lay a hand on his person." So Satan went out from the presence of the LORD.

In Job 1:8, Hast thou considered my servant Job?”, the indices (the center reference column describing a better rendering of the text) says, “Hast thou sat thine heart on my servant Job?” Remember, God is omniscient (all-knowing). He already knows who Satan has set his heart on. God isn’t baiting Satan with Job, He is simply acknowledging that Satan has Job in his sights and has a strategic plan to destroy him. God is acting in an intercessor’s role. Apparently, Satan’s has some legal access to Job via “the hedge being down.” While we don’t know what that cause was, we are shown that God wants to make sure the devil knows where his boundaries are.

 

SCRIPTURE INTERPRETATION:  IS IT LITERAL, OR IS IT INSPIRED?

When interpreting Scripture, we don’t take everything literally, however we do believe the Bible is true. When Scripture says, “God is my rock, my salvation and my fortress (Ps 62:2) no one begins to believe God is an actual inanimate object, a rock. Metaphorically speaking, He is our rock.

Scripture is to be assessed in the context, and with the assumed intent of the author. It should be interpreted literally when it is obvious that the author is speaking of literal things. It should be interpreted metaphorically where it is obvious the author is speaking of metaphoric things. Figures of speech must be accounted for. Also, when interpreting Scripture, be aware that there can be an accurate transcription of character’s statements without affirming the truth of those statements. As an example, the Pharisees (Jesus’ religious opponents) called Jesus a blasphemer. It is accurately recorded for what they said, however, it is not an accurate statement, or affirmation of truth.

 

NO CONTRADICTIONS ALLOWED

In Scripture interpretation, there cannot be a contradiction. There is no contradiction in God. When Scripture “appears” to present a contradiction, from the books of Genesis to Revelation, there must be a solution that disentangles the contradiction.

The book of Job is one of those perceived and assumed contradictions. In an attempt to keep to a literal text, many read Job’s statements as statements of truth, when the narrative should simply be viewed as accurately recorded statements of things, at the time of Job’s suffering, he believed. We have the incredible privilege today to read things about Job, and about Redemption, that disentangle the contradictions. These contradictions cannot be disentangled by taking Job’s limited understanding of God as the baseline to interpret God’s character, or the full work of Redemption.  

As an example, Job says this at the end of his first cycle of suffering, "Naked I came from my mother's womb, And naked shall I return there. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; Blessed be the name of the LORD (Job 1:21)." This is a common “doctrinal” accolade we hear at funerals, and at anytime someone is encountering suffering. BUT, is it a statement of truth? All you have to do is read Job chapter 1, which incidentally, Job didn’t have access to read at the time of his suffering.

Job chapter 1 clearly states it was Satan trying to destroy Job, rather than God "taking away" from him. God was actually intercepting the plan of the devil to limit the damage that free will and spiritual law “allowed” for. Job had a vulnerability, though we aren’t told what it is. Jesus, and the fulfillment of Redemption, clarifies for us God’s provision, protection and intervention. However, our choices can limit the extent of God’s effectual work; things like unbelief, unforgiveness, wrong motives, disobedience, inactive spiritual authority, etc.

 

FOR READING ABOUT THE OTHER "WHAT ABOUTS":

  • PAUL’S THORN IN THE FLESH (2 CORINTHIANS 12:1-10)
  • MAN BORN BLIND (JOHN 9:1-11)
  • TIMOTHY’S STOMACH (1 TIMOTHY 5:23)
  • EPAPHRODITUS (PHILIPPIANS 2:25-30)

 


GROUP DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

Take a few moments to discuss your answers to these questions with the Group.

 

ICE BREAKER  

Do you have a secret ambition? Name something from a "bucket list" or "dream list" that you would like to accomplish before you die. Share why this is important to you?

 

MY MEMOIR STORIES

IMPORTANT:  If the Group would like to continue telling one Memoir Story per week until they are completed, that might allow for a more congruent transition. Please be sensitive to the Science of Freedom content and discussion. It is important that our people are exposed to the possibilities in their potential that this content will provide. Please take no more than 20-25 minutes for the Memoir to leave time for the rest of the content below.

MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEET at the linkThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)You can also watch the WRAP UP video from last week that explains how to use the worksheet. Each person's Memoir should be 10-15 minutes long.

 

QUESTIONS

  1. Since our EXPERIENCE of unanswered prayer, and awareness of our own suffering, often dictates our interpretation of God’s connection to us, share of a time that you questioned whether God had abandoned you? How is this study of Redemption reframing your understanding?
  2. Describe your reactive emotions to know that God is ALWAYS good. Share how God’s goodness - His nature that hates evil like sickness, poverty, emotional oppression and victimization – attracts you towards intimacy with God. If you reflect on negative life experiences, those that include suffering, how does God's goodness lead you back to Him? If you have a life experience of being drawn back to God because of His goodness, after having framed God as the author of your pain, feel free to share it here.
  3. You can clearly see God’s goodness defined in Jesus’ life and ministry. Have you ever thought God might have vetted you to give a mere “incremental” favor and blessing, all while providing unlimited amounts of favor and blessing to others? Describe how looking at Jesus’ life and ministry shows that God equally wants ALL people blessed with unlimited blessings. What does this do to your sense of identity as you face issues in everyday life?  
  4. Are you familiar with the story of Job? How does the Redemption-based interpretation of the book of Job impact your thinking and emotions? 
  5. After watching Session 5’s Video, what is your biggest takeaway, “ah ha” moment, or challenging thought? Why?

SESSION 5 - WRAP UP

This is a 5-10 minute section for MOVING FORWARDGOING DEEPER, use of worksheets and periodic church-wide announcements.

 

MOVE FORWARD

Receive the challenge to “move forward” by applying what was learned this week.

SUGGESTIONS:

  1. PRAY FOR GROUP MEMBER - Pray for at least one person in the Group. Try to identify someone who hasn't been prayed for, or given an encouraging Scripture. Don't worry about feeling inadequate as a prayer. No one feels like they are professional prayers, at least not when they look into eyes of the Almighty God. Praying the Scriptures over people is the best way to learn how to pray effectively. Simply find a Scripture, put the person's name in the text, and pray those words out loud. Then ask the Lord to help you think of things to say to Him about them that would help their lives. 
  2. ASK FOR A SCRIPTURE WORD - Ask God to give you a Scripture to give them to encourage, comfort and edify them. You can Google search "God's Promises" and find a plethora of appropriate texts. Look for one that seems to give you a spark of energy as you think about the person you have been praying for.
  3. DELIVER THE WORD TO THEM - Then send them an email, text or phone call to encourage them. This is how the Holy Spirit works in our lives. As you practice these movements you will expand your own capacity with God, all while giving people much needed hope and strength. 

 

GOING DEEPER

Encouragement to engage the FULL WORKSHOP SEMESTER experience. While this is not required, nor is the Group discussions connected to the full workshop, it is an option for everyone.


PRAYER / DISMISS GROUP

Prayer time with the Group.

Comment

SESSION 4 - THERE IS NOTHING PASSIVE ABOUT GOD'S WILL

Comment

SESSION 4 - THERE IS NOTHING PASSIVE ABOUT GOD'S WILL

GROUP VIDEO

Today we look at why Redemption is important:

God's will is His passion to bless us. The idea that God "doesn't mind if we are healed, blessed, protected, Etc. reduces God's attitude towards us to something that is passive. There is nothing passive about God's will to bless us. Redemption gives us a solid security around God's attitude towards us.

 

SESSION 4 - GROUP VIDEO

Watch 10-20 minutes of a GROUP video teaching, that correlates with the full Workshop semester topics.         


GROUP CONVERSATION GUIDE

 

Where there is sin, open and unatoned sin there is DEATH.

  • First, Adam’s sin that all of humanity inherited
  • Second, our choices to sin
  • Third, perpetrators sins that brought grief into our lives

Where there is sin, open and unatoned sin there is a PENATLY.

 

Curses aren’t God’s enforcement of the penalty;

it is the negative engagement of spiritual laws.

 

Atonement is the Old Testament equivalent to Redemption, which is a New Testament term.

God’s will, revealed in Redemption, is for Believers to live in health, strength, protection, spiritual authority, peace, joy, grace, favor and everything that is considered a “blessing” of God.

Many people are unsure of the “will of God” for their lives. They will often affirm God wants good for their lives, but when stress and chaos seem to be unrelenting, they will express an uncertainty. Redemption cemented God’s will, rooted in God’s nature, not in a contingency of our day-to-day behavior or circumstances.

Uncertainty of God’s will is one of the greatest devolutions of boldness in a person’s faith before God and mountains of life. If you assess God’s will and attitude towards your sufferings as being situational-relevant, under seasons of duress you will always default to insecurity. This insecurity impacts your sense of attachment to God, making intimacy problematic.

 

JAMES 5:13-17 NKJV Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing psalms. 14 Is anyone among you SICK? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer of faith will SAVE the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed SINS, he will be FORGIVEN. 16 Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.

  • The name of the Lord is a term of spiritual authority. It is a constant. This spiritual authority doesn’t come and go. This can’t happen if there isn’t a secured Redemption.
  • The prayer of faith will “SAVE” the sick.

 

Redemption, here, is the forgiveness of sin and healing of the body. Even when our experiences are different than full, miracle healing, we must exalt Redemption as our final authority of God’s will, not our experience. This makes us bold in the face of any contradictory circumstance. This gives us conviction to pray the “prayer of faith,” to be unwavering and to contend for God’s highest and best for us.

Redemption is solid. It has cemented God’s desires for us. There will never be anything to disrupt the clarity and constancy of God’s will. Redemption is a fact in the mind of God.

James 5:15 says, “The prayer of faith will save the sick.” It doesn’t say, “The will of God will save the sick.” This distinction is to highlight how something can be God’s will and yet not our experience. Just as it can be God’s will for a person to be forgiven of sin, and yet that person can struggle to personally experience that forgiveness. So it is, that it is God’s Redemptive Will for us to be healed, and yet some of us struggle to personally experience healing.

 

Faith is our response

to what Jesus did

in Redemption.

 

PSALM 103:1-5 NKJV Bless the LORD, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless His holy name! 2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all His BENEFITS: 3 Who FORGIVES all your iniquities, Who HEALS all your diseases, 4 Who REDEEMS your life from destruction, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies, 5 Who satisfies your mouth with good things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.

  • God forgives ALL of your sins.
  • God heals ALL of your diseases.

 

God SAVES us. The word “SAVE” means “all the manifold blessings of God bestowed upon humanity.” If something is a blessing of God it is already predetermined to be a part of our SALVATION package.

Healing for the body is not to be elevated above the other blessings of God. Healing is an illustration of God’s system of forgiveness of sin, then the right and privilege of blessing.

 

ISAIAH 53:4-6 NKJV Surely He has borne our GRIEFS (sickness) and carried our SORROWS (pain); Yet we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. 5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are HEALED. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.

 

These Old Testament prophecies are highlighted in the New Testament too. The Old Testament was foretelling what was to come. The New Testament is looking back at what Christ has already DONE.

Let’s look at another New Testament verse that corroborates the accomplished fact.

 

MATTHEW 8:17 NKJV that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying: “He Himself took our INFIRMITIES and BORE our SICKNESSES.”

  • Without question, the Isaiah 53:4 text is talking about physical healing, not just spiritual healing.

 

1 PETER 2:24 NKJV …who Himself BORE our SINS in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness — by whose stripes you were HEALED.

 

The word “bore” means “to take away” or “to convey” or “to remove to a distance.” Notice that Jesus satisfied God’s eternal character regarding JUSTICE and destroyed sin at its roots, thereby destroying sickness at its roots. It is as much God’s RIGHTEOUS JUDGMENT for us to be healed as it is for us to be forgiven.

If anyone came to you and said, “God won’t forgive me.” I have sinned and I don’t think He wants to absolve me from it. You would rise up with indignation, fervency and passion to help them see it is RIGHT for them to know God WANTS them forgiven and it is WRONG for them to be caught in the confusion of wondering about it.

So it should be when someone is questioning God’s will to heal us from sickness, disease, brokenness and emotional distress. If they don’t know if God wants to heal them, we should be grounded in God’s Word to the degree it feels passionately RIGHT for them to be healed, and passionately WRONG for them to be in the confusion wondering about it.

Now remember, Isaiah 53 said “by his stripes we are healed.” 1 Peter says looking back, “by his stripes you were healed.” It is an accomplished FACT. Healing isn’t even a promise, technically. It is a FACT of God’s Will and previous redemptive work.

  • You can boldly say, “I AM forgiven!”
  • You can boldly say, “I AM healed!”

 

This Redemptive “will of God” is not a passive thing.

This is God’s passion for humanity.

 


GROUP DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

Take a few moments to discuss your answers to these questions with the Group.

 

ICE BREAKER  

If you could design the perfect house/home, what would it be like?

 

MY MEMOIR STORIES

IMPORTANT:  If the Group would like to continue telling one Memoir Story per week until they are completed, that might allow for a more congruent transition. Please be sensitive to the Science of Freedom content and discussion. It is important that our people are exposed to the possibilities in their potential that this content will provide. Please take no more than 20-25 minutes for the Memoir to leave time for the rest of the content below.

MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEET at the linkThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)You can also watch the WRAP UP video from last week that explains how to use the worksheet. Each person's Memoir should be 10-15 minutes long.

 

QUESTIONS

  1. Have you ever thought of God’s will to heal, bless, protect, or even to forgive your sin as being an attitude of passivity on His part? Why do you think you framed God in that way?
  2. When you hear that Redemption disallows God’s will to change towards you, how does that impact your desire to know and attach to Him? Why?
  3. When you think of the Bible word “saved” or “salvation,” what do you think of? What does it mean to you? How has your definition of it changed? Why did it change?
  4. After watching Session 4’s Video, what is your biggest takeaway, “ah ha” moment, or challenging thought? Why?

SESSION 4 - WRAP UP

This is a 5-10 minute section for MOVING FORWARDGOING DEEPER, use of worksheets and periodic church-wide announcements.

 

MOVE FORWARD

Receive the challenge to “move forward” by applying what was learned this week.

SUGGESTIONS:

  1. PRAY FOR GROUP MEMBER - Pray for at least one person in the Group. Try to identify someone who hasn't been prayed for, or given an encouraging Scripture. Don't worry about feeling inadequate as a prayer. No one feels like they are professional prayers, at least not when they look into eyes of the Almighty God. Praying the Scriptures over people is the best way to learn how to pray effectively. Simply find a Scripture, put the person's name in the text, and pray those words out loud. Then ask the Lord to help you think of things to say to Him about them that would help their lives. 
  2. ASK FOR A SCRIPTURE WORD - Ask God to give you a Scripture to give them to encourage, comfort and edify them. You can Google search "God's Promises" and find a plethora of appropriate texts. Look for one that seems to give you a spark of energy as you think about the person you have been praying for.
  3. DELIVER THE WORD TO THEM - Then send them an email, text or phone call to encourage them. This is how the Holy Spirit works in our lives. As you practice these movements you will expand your own capacity with God, all while giving people much needed hope and strength. 

 

GOING DEEPER 

Encouragement to engage the FULL WORKSHOP SEMESTER experience. While this is not required, nor is the Group discussions connected to the full workshop, it is an option for everyone.


PRAYER / DISMISS GROUP

Prayer time with the Group.

Comment

SESSION 3 - GOD HATES YOUR SUFFERING

Comment

SESSION 3 - GOD HATES YOUR SUFFERING

GROUP VIDEO

Today we look at why Redemption is important:

GOD HATES YOUR SUFFERING!

Redemption is the single most important topic you will ever learn in your entire life!

Redemption changes everything in your life; the way you attach to God, view yourself, interact with people and the way you interpret the meaning of any event that comes into your life.

  • God HATES sin.
  • God LOVES you.
  • God HATES the curses.
  • God LOVES to bless you.

 

SESSION 3 - GROUP VIDEO

Watch 10-20 minutes of a GROUP video teaching, that correlates with the full Workshop semester topics.         


GROUP CONVERSATION GUIDE

 

GOD HATES YOUR SUFFERING!

Redemption is the single most important topic you will ever learn in your entire life!

Redemption changes everything in your life; the way you attach to God, view yourself, interact with people and the way you interpret the meaning of any event that comes into your life.

  • Redemption is what CHRIST did for you.
  • Spiritual Authority is what YOU do, in response to what Christ did.
  • The Holy Spirit is WHO HELPS you do, what Christ did for you.

EPHESIANS 1:7 NKJV In Him we have REDEMPTION through His blood, THE FORGIVENESS OF SINS, according to the riches of His GRACE.

MATTHEW 9:2–7 NIV Some men brought to him a PARALYTIC, lying on a mat. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, "Take heart, son; YOUR SINS ARE FORGIVEN." 3 At this, some of the teachers of the law said to themselves, "This fellow is blaspheming!" 4 Knowing their thoughts, Jesus said, "Why do you entertain evil thoughts in your hearts? 5 WHICH IS EASIER: to say, 'YOUR SINS ARE FORGIVEN,' or to say, 'GET UP AND WALK'? 6 But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins. . . ." Then he said to the paralytic, "Get up, take your mat and go home."  7 And the man got up and went home.

MATTHEW 9:5 AMP For which is easier: to say, Your SINS ARE FORGIVEN and the PENALTY REMITTED, or to say, Get up and walk? 

  • Jesus tied sickness, disease or any kind of brokenness in the human body, to the original sin of Adam, or individual sins. 

ROMANS 6:23 NKJV For the WAGES of SIN is DEATH, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

  • Anything that leads to physical death would be the offspring of sin. Of course, sickness and disease often do lead to physical death. The same is true of poverty; poverty often leads to physical death.

GALATIANS 3:13-14, 29 NIV Christ REDEEMED US from the CURSE OF THE LAW by BECOMING A CURSE for us, for it is written: "Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree." 14 He redeemed us in order that THE BLESSING GIVEN TO ABRAHAM might COME TO THE GENTILES through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit. … 29 If you belong to Christ, then you are ABRAHAM'S SEED, and HEIRS ACCORDING TO THE PROMISE.

  • Wherever there’s unrepentant sin in Scripture, there’s also spiritual, physical, psychological/emotional, relational need. However, wherever there’s obedience or atoned sin, there’s also wholeness and prosperity in these areas. This being true, the forgiven Christian, having the whole of his or her sin abolished, is positioned for supernatural peace and wholeness. We’ve been made free from sin; we’ve also been made free from spiritual, physical, psychological/emotional, and relational need!
  • Open and unatoned sin carries penalties with it. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a specific sin, just the existence of Adam’s nature trying to impose itself. But thank God as believers our sins are forgiven and the penalties of sickness, disease and pain are remitted through Jesus Christ! We don’t have to pay the penalty for our sin. Our sins are not just atoned for or covered, they have been totally abolished. We are forgiven and healed.

 

God HATES sin

with the same fervency

He LOVES you!

God hates sin

because it destroys you,

the object of His love.

 

WHAT IS THE CURSE OF THE LAW?

DEUTERONOMY 28:1-68 NIV

If you fully obey the LORD your God and carefully follow all his COMMANDS I give you today, the LORD your God will set you high above all the nations on earth.

2 All these blessings will come upon you and accompany you if you obey the LORD your God:

3 You will be blessed in the city and blessed in the country.

4 The fruit of your womb will be blessed, and the crops of your land and the young of your livestock — the calves of your herds and the lambs of your flocks.

5 Your basket and your kneading trough will be blessed.

6 You will be blessed when you come in and blessed when you go out.

7 The LORD will grant that the enemies who rise up against you will be defeated before you. They will come at you from one direction but flee from you in seven.

8 The LORD will send a blessing on your barns and on everything you put your hand to. The LORD your God will bless you in the land he is giving you.

9 The LORD will establish you as his holy people, as he promised you on oath, if you keep the commands of the LORD your God and walk in his ways.

10 Then all the peoples on earth will see that you are called by the name of the LORD, and they will fear you.

11 The LORD will grant you abundant prosperity — in the fruit of your womb, the young of your livestock and the crops of your ground — in the land he swore to your forefathers to give you.

12 The LORD will open the heavens, the storehouse of his bounty, to send rain on your land in season and to bless all the work of your hands. You will lend to many nations but will borrow from none.

13 The LORD will make you the head, not the tail. If you pay attention to the commands of the LORD your God that I give you this day and carefully follow them, you will always be at the top, never at the bottom.

14 Do not turn aside from any of the commands I give you today, to the right or to the left, following other gods and serving them.

--------- THE CURSES BEGIN ---------

15 However, if you do not obey the LORD your God and do not carefully follow all his COMMANDS and decrees I am giving you today, all these curses will come upon you and overtake you:

16 You will be cursed in the city and cursed in the country.

17 Your basket and your kneading trough will be cursed. (won’t enjoy your work/labor)

18 The fruit of your womb will be cursed (can’t get pregnant), and the crops of your land (financial and vocational success), and the calves of your herds and the lambs of your flocks. 19 You will be cursed when you come in and cursed when you go out.

20 The LORD will send on you curses, confusion and rebuke (lack of peace, wisdom and clear decision making) in everything you put your hand to, until you are destroyed and come to sudden ruin (no safety or protection or security of future) because of the evil you have done in forsaking him.  

21 The LORD will plague you with diseases (sickness, disease and physical weakness) until he has destroyed you from the land you are entering to possess.

22 The LORD will strike you with wasting disease, with fever and inflammation, with scorching heat and drought, with blight and mildew, which will plague you until you perish.

23 The sky over your head will be bronze, the ground beneath you iron. (nothing easy, so favor, no momentum)

24 The LORD will turn the rain of your country into dust and powder; it will come down from the skies until you are destroyed. (opportunities will be hard, impossible, and hopeless)

25 The LORD will cause you to be defeated before your enemies (shame, regret, oppression). You will come at them from one direction but flee from them in seven, and you will become a thing of horror to all the kingdoms on earth (fear, faithlessness, question, skepticism).

26 Your carcasses will be food for all the birds of the air and the beasts of the earth, and there will be no one to frighten them away. (isolation, aloneness, separation)

27 The LORD will afflict you with the boils of Egypt and with tumors, festering sores and the itch, from which you cannot be cured. (more sickness, disease, physical disease)

28 The LORD will afflict you with madness, blindness and confusion of mind(darkness, confusion, mental and psychological breakdowns)

29 At midday you will grope about like a blind man in the dark. You will be unsuccessful in everything you do (failure); day after day you will be oppressed and robbed (victimized), with no one to rescue you (no oversight, no justice).

30 You will be pledged to be married to a woman, but another will take her and ravish her (rape of spouse). You will build a house, but you will not live in it (your work that does succeed will not be your reward). You will plant a vineyard, but you will not even begin to enjoy its fruit.

31 Your ox will be slaughtered before your eyes, but you will eat none of it. Your donkey will be forcibly taken from you and will not be returned. Your sheep will be given to your enemies, and no one will rescue them. (tools and items that are most precious to your sustenance and dreams will be taken from you)

32 Your sons and daughters will be given to another nation, and you will wear out your eyes watching for them day after day, powerless to lift a hand. (child abductions, spiritually abducted too)

33 A people that you do not know will eat what your land and labor produce, and you will have nothing but cruel oppression all your days. (oppressiveness spirit, soul and body)

34 The sights you see will drive you mad. (you will find yourself meditating on your regrets and intense emotions of injustice)

35 The LORD will afflict your knees and legs with painful boils that cannot be cured, spreading from the soles of your feet to the top of your head.

36 The LORD will drive you and the king you set over you to a nation unknown to you or your fathers. There you will worship other gods, gods of wood and stone. (your religion will not make sense but be forced upon you)

37 You will become a thing of horror and an object of scorn and ridicule to all the nations where the LORD will drive you. (embarrassment, shame, rejection, humiliation)

38 You will sow much seed in the field but you will harvest little, because locusts will devour it. (Everything there is is against you and nothing works out for you)

39 You will plant vineyards and cultivate them but you will not drink the wine or gather the grapes, because worms will eat them. (Unforeseen, pest-like things will spring up. When you do everything right, something will happen to undermine it.)

40 You will have olive trees throughout your country but you will not use the oil, because the olives will drop off. (You hopes will begin to get up. But in the last minute you will have them crushed.)

41 You will have sons and daughters but you will not keep them, because they will go into captivity. (captivity to drugs, alcohol, to people/spouses who don’t like you, literal child abductions, kidnappings, etc.)

42 Swarms of locusts will take over all your trees and the crops of your land. (new and multiplied problems will arise from places you will not believe.)

43 The alien (people from other nations) who lives among you will rise above you higher and higher, but you will sink lower and lower. (everyone else gets promoted and are favored over you, while you continue to stagnate and find no favor.)

44 He will lend to you, but you will not lend to him. He will be the head, but you will be the tail. (others will be in control over you and have tentacles that harass your life)

45 All these curses will come upon you. They will pursue you and overtake (you can’t hide from them, they have GPS accuracy following you) you until you are destroyed, because you did not obey the LORD your God and observe the commands and decrees he gave you.

46 They will be a sign and a wonder to you and your descendants forever. (You failure will not be merely natural, you will have miracle level and supernatural failure.)

47 Because you did not serve the LORD your God joyfully and gladly in the time of prosperity,

48 therefore in hunger and thirst, in nakedness and dire poverty, you will serve the enemies the LORD sends against you. He will put an iron yoke on your neck until he has destroyed you. (your work and vocation will be intense with oppression)

49 The LORD will bring a nation against you from far away, from the ends of the earth, like an eagle swooping down, a nation whose language you will not understand, (vocational and life confusion that happens in ways that we could not possibly see. We plan our lives by the present landscape but right when we think we are going to make it something pops up from another place that is worse than what I presently have will come and dominate me.)

50 a fierce-looking nation without respect for the old or pity for the young. (life will have no compassion or empathy from anyone who has the human power to change it)

51 They will devour the young of your livestock and the crops of your land until you are destroyed. They will leave you no grain, new wine or oil, nor any calves of your herds or lambs of your flocks until you are ruined. (you don’t get to enjoy any of the GOOD of life, even though you set your life up for it to be good. You’ve done all the right things to get these strategic results of a good life…but it is taken away from you.)

52 They will lay siege to all the cities throughout your land until the high fortified walls in which you trust fall down. They will besiege all the cities throughout the land the LORD your God is giving you. (No matter what your SECURITY has been and what the great plans and people you have trusted in, you will be overcome by all your circumstances.)

53 Because of the suffering that your enemy will inflict on you during the siege, you will eat the fruit of the womb, the flesh of the sons and daughters the LORD your God has given you. (such a level of despair that you will turn to cannibalism, you will resort to behaviors of survival that you could never imagine you would ever do. You will become someone that you will finally say, “I don’t even know who you are anymore!”)

54 Even the most gentle and sensitive man among you will have no compassion on his own brother or the wife he loves or his surviving children,

55 and he will not give to one of them any of the flesh of his children that he is eating. It will be all he has left because of the suffering your enemy will inflict on you during the siege of all your cities. 56 The most gentle and sensitive woman among you — so sensitive and gentle that she would not venture to touch the ground with the sole of her foot — will begrudge the husband she loves and her own son or daughter

57 the afterbirth from her womb and the children she bears. For she intends to eat them secretly during the siege and in the distress that your enemy will inflict on you in your cities.

58 If you do not carefully follow all the words of this law, which are written in this book, and do not revere this glorious and awesome name — the LORD your God — 

59 the LORD will send fearful plagues (sickness and disease) on you and your descendants, harsh and prolonged disasters, and severe and lingering illnesses.

60 He will bring upon you all the diseases of Egypt that you dreaded, and they will cling to you.

61 The LORD will also bring on you every kind of sickness and disaster not recorded in this Book of the Law, until you are destroyed.

62 You who were as numerous as the stars in the sky will be left but few in number, because you did not obey the LORD your God. (every dream of you, your family and your friends will dissipate and leave you empty)

63 Just as it pleased the LORD to make you prosper and increase in number, so it will please him to ruin and destroy you. You will be uprooted from the land you are entering to possess.

64 Then the LORD will scatter you among all nations, from one end of the earth to the other. There you will worship other gods — gods of wood and stone, which neither you nor your fathers have known.

65 Among those nations you will find no repose, no resting place for the sole of your foot. There the LORD will give you an anxious mind, eyes weary with longing, and a despairing heart.

66 You will live in constant suspense, filled with dread both night and day, never sure of your life.

67 In the morning you will say, "If only it were evening!" and in the evening, "If only it were morning!" — because of the terror that will fill your hearts and the sights that your eyes will see.

68 The LORD will send you back in ships to Egypt on a journey I said you should never make again. There you will offer yourselves for sale to your enemies as male and female slaves, but no one will buy you.

 

CAUSATIVE VERSUS PERMISSIVE VERB TENSES

The original Hebrew language, from which our English Old Testament translations come from, does not have a causative verb tense. Each of these words translated in the causative should be translated in the permissive.

Below is an example of how to interpret and understood difficult "causative" texts, from an article by Dave Miller, Ph.D.:

To be honest and fair, the biblical interpreter must be willing to allow the peculiar linguistic features of ancient languages to be clarified and understood in accordance with the way those languages functioned. Specifically, ancient Hebrew (like most all other languages, then and now) was literally loaded with figurative language—i.e., figures of speech, Semitisms, colloquialisms, and idioms. It frequently was the case that “[a]ctive verbs were used by the Hebrews to express, not the doing of the thing, but the permission of the thing which the agent is said to do” (Bullinger, 1898, p. 823, emp. in orig.; cf. MacKnight, 1954, p. 29). Similarly, the figure of speech known as “metonymy of the subject” occurs “[w]here the action is put for the declaration concerning it: or where what is said to be done is put for what is declared, or permitted, or foretold as to be done: or where an action, said to be done, is put for the giving occasion for such action” (Bullinger, p. 570, italics in orig., emp. added). Hence, when the Bible says that the “distressing spirit” that troubled Saul was “from the Lord,” the writer was using an idiom to indicate that the Lord allowed or permitted the distressing spirit to come upon Saul. George Williams commented: “What God permits He is stated in the Bible to perform” (1960, p. 127).

 

GOD will allow

what WE allow.

 

MATTHEW 16:19 KJV And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt BIND on earth shall be BOUND in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt LOOSE on earth shall be LOOSED in heaven.

CONTEMPORARY ENGLISH VERSION - I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven, and God in heaven will ALLOW whatever you ALLOW on earth. But he will NOT ALLOW anything that you DON’T ALLOW.

 

God can ALLOW things

that He does NOT advocate!

 

God hates the "curse" with an equal fervency as He hates sin. Where both blessings and curses are concerned, He will allow what we allow.  Yet, God still hates it. These are issues of free moral agency, the gift of God to a free moral world.

God hates these curses. You and I need to nurture an equally intolerant attitude towards these curses. We must contend for the blessings of God, because Redemption was purchased by Jesus precious blood. We emphasize the blessings of God, that God wants you to be victorious, because God emphasizes it.

God’s predisposition towards blessings and cursings in our life creates a secure attachment with Him. Intimacy is on the line! To reduce the emotional impact of God on our suffering is to reduce our capacity for security, and therefor our capacity for intimacy.

 

God HATES the CURSES

with the same fervency

He HATES SIN, 

and the same fervency

He LOVES YOU!

 

IMPORTANT:

If you are struggling with pain and suffering, this teaching in now way is projecting that you must have sin in your life. The sin and forgiveness is about a system that caused the earth to be under a curse. That curse has now come upon all people. Redemption gives us restitution and spiritual authority to turn the curse into a blessing.


GROUP DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

Take a few moments to discuss your answers to these questions with the Group.

 

ICE BREAKER  

What is your favorite TV show? Why? (If you don’t have one presently, what about when you were a kid?)

 

MY MEMOIR STORIES

IMPORTANT:  If the Group would like to continue telling one Memoir Story per week until they are completed, that might allow for a more congruent transition. Please be sensitive to the Science of Freedom content and discussion. It is important that our people are exposed to the possibilities in their potential that this content will provide. Please take no more than 20-25 minutes for the Memoir to leave time for the rest of the content below.

MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEET at the linkThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)You can also watch the WRAP UP video from last week that explains how to use the worksheet. Each person's Memoir should be 10-15 minutes long.

 

QUESTIONS

  1. Describe how you feel when you hear that God “hates” the curses mentioned in Deuteronomy 28. Can you accept that God has emotional intensity around your blessings?
  2. While you may have heard of God wanting to bless your life, have you ever had evidential reasoning behind that belief? For instance, have you ever heard that “God HATES sin with the same fervency He LOVES you! God hates sin because it destroys you, the object of His love.”What is different about what you are processing in this Group Video Teaching, and what you have previously known?
  3. Describe what it means to you for God not to “smite” or “cause” people to be cursed, only that He “allows” it to happen. Have you ever thought God was “cursing” you, or loved ones, with troubles in life? Even if you believed God allowed the “curses” for good discipline, how did/does that impact your intimacy with God?
  4. After watching Session 3’s Video, what is your biggest takeaway, “ah ha” moment, or challenging thought? Why?

SESSION 3 - WRAP UP

This is a 5-10 minute section for MOVING FORWARDGOING DEEPER, use of worksheets and periodic church-wide announcements.

 

MOVE FORWARD

Receive the challenge to “move forward” by applying what was learned this week.

SUGGESTIONS:

  1. PRAY FOR GROUP MEMBER - Pray for at least one person in the Group. Try to identify someone who hasn't been prayed for, or given an encouraging Scripture. Don't worry about feeling inadequate as a prayer. No one feels like they are professional prayers, at least not when they look into eyes of the Almighty God. Praying the Scriptures over people is the best way to learn how to pray effectively. Simply find a Scripture, put the person's name in the text, and pray those words out loud. Then ask the Lord to help you think of things to say to Him about them that would help their lives. 
  2. ASK FOR A SCRIPTURE WORD - Ask God to give you a Scripture to give them to encourage, comfort and edify them. You can Google search "God's Promises" and find a plethora of appropriate texts. Look for one that seems to give you a spark of energy as you think about the person you have been praying for.
  3. DELIVER THE WORD TO THEM - Then send them an email, text or phone call to encourage them. This is how the Holy Spirit works in our lives. As you practice these movements you will expand your own capacity with God, all while giving people much needed hope and strength. 

 

GOING DEEPER 

Encouragement to engage the FULL WORKSHOP SEMESTER experience. While this is not required, nor is the Group discussions connected to the full workshop, it is an option for everyone.


PRAYER / DISMISS GROUP

Prayer time with the Group.

Comment

SESSION 2 - THE SYSTEM OF REDEMPTION

Comment

SESSION 2 - THE SYSTEM OF REDEMPTION

GROUP VIDEO

Today we look at why Redemption is important. We ask:

  • What is Redemption?
  • How extensive is forgiveness?
  • What is God’s will concerning our blessings?

These are issues of identity! There is no greater revelation of God given to mankind than the gift of Redemption.

 

SESSION 2 - GROUP VIDEO

Watch 10-20 minutes of a GROUP video teaching, that correlates with the full Workshop semester topics.         


GROUP CONVERSATION GUIDE

 

REDEMPTION AND FORGIVENESS

  • What is Redemption?
  • To purchase, or to buy back

EPHESIANS 1:7 NKJV In Him we have REDEMPTION through His blood, the FORGIVENESS of SINS, according to the riches of His grace…

Every sin you have ever committed is now absolved. God legally dances over you as though you never had sinned.

The forgiveness of sin is not just what violations you have committed, but it is the nature of sin that you inherited from Adam and Eve.

Forgiveness of sin is about the legal nature of God. It isn’t God cutting corners, or winking, or demeaning the offence of sin. Forgiveness is God doing the full measure of work to satisfy His Just nature, so that He can demonstrate pure Goodness into your life.

 

REDEMPTION TO REIGN

ROMANS 5:12, 17 NKJV Therefore, just as through ONE MAN SIN ENTERED the world, and death through sin, and thus death SPREAD TO ALL MEN, because all sinned-- ... 17 For if by the ONE MAN'S OFFENSE DEATH REIGNED through the one, much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.)

Forgiveness includes any sin we committed, and the sin nature we inherited from Adam and Eve. Forgiveness includes the most grievous things you might have done; abortions, murders, abuses, stealing, prostitution, slave trading, perversions, etc.

Redemption means we are now legally empowered, and responsible, to reign, rule and take dominion in this earth, as God’s representatives.

 

DOES GOD WANT YOU BLESSED?

Does God want you blessed? Many people will say “yes” without hesitation. But when pressed with accusations and conflicting experiences they will, with equal conviction, say “no.” So which is it? How do we know?

If sin brought death, then anything that causes death is also a part of this forgiveness. God wants you to be healed physically, and blessed materially, with the same passion He wants you to be forgiven. This is all central to Redemption!

 

HEALING AND PROSPERITY

The topics of healing and prosperity are the most common illustrations of Scripture to connect atonement, forgiveness and restitutionary blessings.

Healing and prosperity in atonement (Redemption) are to be explored as a system. Healing and prosperity are not the most important, or elevated values of God, for us. However, if you understand the system of forgiveness to healing, or forgiveness to prosperity, you will understand all the Redemptive systems for joy, peace, wisdom, favor and the Holy Spirit’s anointing upon your life. Redemption moves these blessings from being a random promise, or side-issue with God, to being central to what God has done in Christ.

Everything begins at a spiritual origin. God is a spirit, and He created all things physical. When many people talk about things being “spiritual” (i.e. “that’s just talking about spiritual things) we are diminishing the impact of sin and forgiveness being a mere side-issue with God and our lives. But when you realize that all things originate in a spiritual root, forgiveness and blessings become a central passion within the nature of God. Everything has a spiritual origin.

To deal with physical things, and to ignore spiritual things, is one of the greatest deceptions of mankind.

GENESIS 3:6-10, 21 NKJV So when the woman saw that the tree [was] good for food, that it [was] pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make [one] wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they [were] naked; and they sewed FIG LEAVES together and made themselves coverings. 8 And they heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden. 9 Then the LORD God called to Adam and said to him, "Where [are] you?" 10 So he said, "I heard Your voice in the garden, and I WAS AFRAID because I was naked; and I hid myself." ... 21 Also for Adam and his wife the LORD GOD MADE TUNICS OF SKIN, AND CLOTHED THEM.

Sin brought sickness, disease, dysfunction, poverty, lack, suffering, sorrow, grief, trauma, etc. into the earth. Forgiveness is not only about releasing you from a violation, but it is the absolving of the things sin causes; sickness, disease, dysfunction, poverty, lack, suffering, sorrow, grief, trauma, etc.

 

FORGIVENESS AND ABSOLVING JUDGMENT

Many people will propose that God forgave us of the sin, but we still have to endure the consequences of our sin. However, for God to forgive without absolving us of the consequences of judgment is not really forgiveness at all!

God is as passionate, legally defensive of justice, for our supernatural resourcing of all blessings as He is for us to be forgiven of our sin.

Because Redemption is the moment of God’s nature being satisfied, God’s blessings in our lives is not about a random promise, but about an indisputable fact in the heart of God towards us. We don’t ever have to pray to get God’s will inclined towards us for good. God has already established His will, changed our very nature at the new birth, and now requires us to stand in our spiritual authority to execute that will in our lives.

 

IMPORTANT:

If you are struggling with pain and suffering, this teaching in now way is projecting that you must have sin in your life. The sin and forgiveness is about a system that caused the earth to be under a curse. That curse has now come upon all people. Redemption gives us restitution and spiritual authority to turn the curse into a blessing.


GROUP DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

Take a few moments to discuss your answers to these questions with the Group.

 

ICE BREAKER  

When it comes to the future, what do you worry about the most?

 

MY MEMOIR STORIES

IMPORTANT:  If the Group would like to continue telling one Memoir Story per week until they are completed, that might allow for a more congruent transition. Please be sensitive to the Science of Freedom content and discussion. It is important that our people are exposed to the possibilities in their potential that this content will provide. Please take no more than 20-25 minutes for the Memoir to leave time for the rest of the content below.

MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEET at the linkThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)You can also watch the WRAP UP video from last week that explains how to use the worksheet. Each person's Memoir should be 10-15 minutes long.

 

QUESTIONS

  1. Describe how you think God is emotionally processing your sin (both the aggregate of all your sins, as well as your most recent individual violations). Is God angry at you? Does He “get” you? Is God compassionate towards you? Is God celebrating and dancing over you?
  2. Share one of your present life-hardships (lost a job, got divorced, struggling financially, disappointed dreams, illness of a loved one, a loved one passed, compulsive/destructive behavior, etc.).  Describe how you think God is emotionally processing your pain. Is God ambivalent towards it and you? Does God “hate” what you are going through? Is God compassionate towards you? Is God celebrating and dancing over you?
  3. Why do you think sincere people tend to elevate life-experiences as the detector of God’s will for them? If they experience blessing, then they assume God did it. If they experience suffering, they believe God was ambivalent, or actively allowed it, or even caused the experience. Is “experience” a healthy and authoritative detector of God’s will for us? Why or why not?
  4. After watching Session 2’s Video, what is your biggest takeaway, “ah ha” moment, or challenging thought? Why?

SESSION 2 - WRAP UP

This is a 5-10 minute section for MOVING FORWARDGOING DEEPER, use of worksheets and periodic church-wide announcements.

 

MOVE FORWARD

Receive the challenge to “move forward” by applying what was learned this week.

SUGGESTIONS:

1.    IF YOU HAVEN'T ALREADY, PREPARE TO TELL YOUR STORY, your MEMOIR, to the rest of us over the next few weeks. Use the MY MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEETThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)

2.    PRAY FOR GROUP MEMBER - Pray for at least one person in the Group. Try to identify someone who hasn't been prayed for, or given an encouraging Scripture. Don't worry about feeling inadequate as a prayer. No one feels like they are professional prayers, at least not when they look into eyes of the Almighty God. Praying the Scriptures over people is the best way to learn how to pray effectively. Simply find a Scripture, put the person's name in the text, and pray those words out loud. Then ask the Lord to help you think of things to say to Him about them that would help their lives. 

3.    ASK FOR A SCRIPTURE WORD - Ask God to give you a Scripture to give them to encourage, comfort and edify them. You can Google search "God's Promises" and find a plethora of appropriate texts. Look for one that seems to give you a spark of energy as you think about the person you have been praying for.

4.    DELIVER THE WORD TO THEM - Then send them an email, text or phone call to encourage them. This is how the Holy Spirit works in our lives. As you practice these movements you will expand your own capacity with God, all while giving people much needed hope and strength. 

 

GOING DEEPER

Encouragement to engage the FULL WORKSHOP SEMESTER experience. While this is not required, nor is the Group discussions connected to the full workshop, it is an option for everyone.


PRAYER / DISMISS GROUP

Prayer time with the Group.

Comment

SESSION 1 - WHAT IS REDEMPTION?

Comment

SESSION 1 - WHAT IS REDEMPTION?

GROUP VIDEO

Today we look at why Redemption is important. We ask:

  • Who is God?
  • Who are you?
  • Who are the people around you?

These are issues of identity! There is no greater revelation of God given to mankind than the gift of Redemption.

 

SESSION 1 - GROUP VIDEO

Watch 10-20 minutes of a GROUP video teaching, that correlates with the full Workshop semester topics.         


GROUP CONVERSATION GUIDE

 

  • Who are you?
  • Who is God?
  • Who are the people sitting around you?

These questions address your IDENTITY!

How do YOU interpret the world around you? What if all of your interpretations are based in faslehoods, lies or deceptions?

  • Does your OPINION of who you are really matter?
  • Do your PHILOSOPHICAL ideas of identity matter?
  • Do your EMOTIONAL ideas of identity matter?

REDEMPTION brings us right down to the very foundation of identity. REDEMPTION is the most authoritative lens of your true Self. 

 

GOD LOVES RELATIONSHIP CONNECTIONS

JOHN 17:20-23 NKJV [Jesus prayed] "I do not pray for these (Apostles/Disciples) alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; 21 that they all may be ONE, as You, Father, [are] in Me, and I in You; that they also may be ONE in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me. 22 And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be ONE just as We are ONE: 23 I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in ONE, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me."

Jesus prayed for us to have a "Trinity" level intimacy. We are designed for intimacy. The answer to all maladaptive behavior is intimacy.

 

THE WAY WE SEE OURSELVES

  • The Limbic Brian
  • The Heart
  • Identity 

MARK 12:29-31 NKJV Jesus answered him, "The first of all the commandments [is]: 'Hear, O Israel, the LORD our God, the LORD is one. 30 'And you shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.' This [is] the first commandment. 31 "And the second, like [it, is] this: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no other commandment greater than these."

  • LOVE GOD
  • LOVE SELF
  • LOVE NEIGHBOR

The way you interpret the meaning of God will impact the way you interpret Self. The way you interpret Self will impact the way you interpret others. The way you interpret others will impact your sense of meaning in the world.

 

WHO IS GOD? IS GOD A BIG PURPLE DINOSAUR? 

Often, in pursuit of our own sense of meaning, we fabricate a God who fits our image. Many people live their whole lives believing things about God that just aren't true. These misbeliefs can be toxic to a life of intimacy. These misbeliefs can generate a torrent of fear-based energy in our lives. 

 

WHO ARE YOU? 

Sometimes we look at our own giftings and assume that we are exceptional. Within hours we can re-evaluate ourselves, contrasted to our friends highlight reels from social media, and assume we are way below average. We also have influencers - parents, siblings, coaches, teachers, etc - that have projected their opinions of us onto our lens. This construct is how we are viewing ourselves. It is emotional. It is scary. But do we stop to ask if it is true?

 

WHO ARE THE PEOPLE IN THE ROOM?

We long for intimacy, to fit in, to belong. That is what we were designed to experience. When we see people in this room, and maybe didn't get an emotional response from them, we can assume they are rejecting us. The fear of rejection can be the beginning of a tail spin in every area of our identity. But is our interpretation of the people around us actually true? Do we ever stop to ask, "What is real and accurate about how I see myself?"

 

REDEMPTION IS ABOUT LOOKING AT FACTS

An understanding of Redemption takes the mystery and opinion out of our interpretations of Self and all human suffering. In Redemption we begin to understand the nature and character of God. Redemption provides a secure attachment to God, even when we don't have all our questions answered. Redemption is the greatest light of truth we have access to.

  • PROMISES - A projection of what God might do in the future of our lives.
  • FACT - Something that has already been accomplished, or established.

Redemption is what Christ already accomplished. So when we talk about the "promises" of God, in the New Testament, we aren't talking about a projection of what God's will might be; we are talking about what God's will has eternally be established as. This takes probabilities away, and leaves us with absolutes.

MALACHI 3:6 NKJV For I [am] the LORD, I do not change;

HEBREWS 13:8 NKJV Jesus Christ [is] the same yesterday, today, and forever.

The absolutes in God are what our interpretations are to be based on. We are to live from God's nature.

 

BRAIN DAMAGED FROM A PUNITIVE INTERPRETATION OF GOD

Andrew Newberg and Mark Robert Waldman, neuroscientist from the Ivey League University of Pennsylvania, studied the cognitive health of people seeking after God. Their findings are that when a person sees God as an Authoritative, Critical, or Distant God (all these express a Punitive God), it actually damages the brain. (See Book Here).

Redemption is the key to "crack the code" of difficult texts; texts that leave God seeming to be harshly punitive to some people. 

 

85%+ ADVANTAGE TO INTERPRET ANYTHING IN THE WORLD

If you understand these four core competencies that our Group topics cover, you will interpret suffering and relationships with an excess of 85% accuracy.

  • Science of Freedom (Human Behavior)
  • Redemption
  • Spiritual Authority
  • The Holy Spirit

 

THE POWER OF PROGRESSIVE REVELATION

Redemption allows us to take the greatest light, the greatest insight of understanding, and shine it on the conflicting scenarios throughout the Bible. Many people take Biblical texts that are a bit obscure, using it as the greatest revelation of truth, and shine it on the entire Redemptive Gospel. Unfortunately, when we do this, it creates spiritual dysfunction. Our greatest revelation of God is Jesus Christ, and what He did at the Cross and Resurrection. We know God absolutely through Jesus. We don't judge Jesus by our mis-interpretations of an Old Testament story. 

Progressive Revelation means we have a growing body of knowledge from Genesis, to the last book of the Bible, Revelation. Progressive Revelation means there are no conflicts between the first mentions of things, and now the revelation of Jesus. Progressive Revelation just means that when we have a clearer understanding of who God is in Redemption we will assess the conflicts in our interpretations of Old Testament stories.

REDEMPTION is the greatest revelation of God that has been given to us!

 

GOD IS BENEVOLENT

God loves you. God likes you. God is in a good mood towards you!

"How can this be? Even in the moment of my sin?"

Yes! God's emotions are highly complex compared to our human emotions. God's emotions are proactive, based in His ability to perfectly know everything in the past, present and the future. At the moment of your sinful action is not when God finds out about the action. If God reacts to our sin, then He becomes contingent. For God to be reactive, means that God can't be immutable or Self-existent. These are issues of God's very nature.

God moves with compassion because His love surges from His nature, not in reaction to your sin. Inherent within sin is a cycle of death and destruction. God doesn't have to reactively judge our sin, as He has put the judgment in the broken laws that we choose.

 

EXPERIENCE SHOULD NEVER BE YOUR GREATEST REVELATION OF GOD!

Many people use their moment to moment experiences in life to interpret God's will towards them. This is a futile approach to God. Never elevate your experiences of unanswered prayer, or even tragedy, to the level of divine revelation given to us by Redemption.


GROUP DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

Take a few moments to discuss your answers to these questions with the Group.

 

ICE BREAKER  

What is one of the most exciting things happening in your life right now? Why does it excite you?

 

MY MEMOIR STORIES

IMPORTANT:  If the Group would like to continue telling one Memoir Story per week until they are completed, that might allow for a more congruent transition. Please be sensitive to the Science of Freedom content and discussion. It is important that our people are exposed to the possibilities in their potential that this content will provide. Please take no more than 20-25 minutes for the Memoir to leave time for the rest of the content below.

MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEET at the linkThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)You can also watch the WRAP UP video from last week that explains how to use the worksheet. Each person's Memoir should be 10-15 minutes long.

 

QUESTIONS

  1. What was your childhood view of God? Was He authoritarian (dominated everything in your life)? Was He critical (always finding fault with you)? Was He distant? Was He benevolent (kind and compassionate)?
  2. What influenced your primary beliefs about God? Parents, church, friends, experiences of suffering or blessings, Etc.? Share the markers that impacted your beliefs about God?
  3. Did you ever have a "suffering" experience (the death of a loved one, oppressive poverty, witnessing abuse, etc.) that caused you to form God into a particular image? What was that experience like and why do you think you developed your own interpretation of God?
  4. After watching Session 1's Video, what are you most excited about for this Semester?

SESSION 1 - WRAP UP

This is a 5-10 minute section for MOVING FORWARDGOING DEEPER, use of worksheets and periodic church-wide announcements.

 

MOVE FORWARD

Receive the challenge to “move forward” by applying what was learned this week.

SUGGESTIONS:

  1. IF YOU HAVEN'T ALREADY, PREPARE TO TELL YOUR STORY, your MEMOIR, to the rest of us over the next few weeks. Use the MY MEMOIR: PREPARING TO TELL MY STORY (Scope Timeline) worksheet to help you think through your story. You can download the SCOPE TIMELINE WORKSHEETThere is a longer version of the worksheet, that gives an extra step to dig deeper into your story, which can be downloaded at LONG VERSION WORKSHEET (RECOMMENDED)
  2. PRAY FOR GROUP MEMBER - Pray for at least one person in the Group. Try to identify someone who hasn't been prayed for, or given an encouraging Scripture. Don't worry about feeling inadequate as a prayer. No one feels like they are professional prayers, at least not when they look into eyes of the Almighty God. Praying the Scriptures over people is the best way to learn how to pray effectively. Simply find a Scripture, put the person's name in the text, and pray those words out loud. Then ask the Lord to help you think of things to say to Him about them that would help their lives. 
  3. ASK FOR A SCRIPTURE WORD - Ask God to give you a Scripture to give them to encourage, comfort and edify them. You can Google search "God's Promises" and find a plethora of appropriate texts. Look for one that seems to give you a spark of energy as you think about the person you have been praying for.
  4. DELIVER THE WORD TO THEM - Then send them an email, text or phone call to encourage them. This is how the Holy Spirit works in our lives. As you practice these movements you will expand your own capacity with God, all while giving people much needed hope and strength. 

 

GOING DEEPER 

Encouragement to engage the FULL WORKSHOP SEMESTER experience. While this is not required, nor is the Group discussions connected to the full workshop, it is an option for everyone.


PRAYER / DISMISS GROUP

Prayer time with the Group.

Comment