Introduction: The Bad Example of Esau
Our Greatest Weakness: "Sin" or the "Flesh," an inherited, internal, evil propensity that distorts the human personality; Ps. 19:13; 119:133; Rom. 6:12; 7:17,18, 20, 23
Prayer to begin each day from the late Dr. Russell R. Camp:
I John 5:14, 15; I Thess. 4:15; John 17:24
Formula: I shall endeavor, with God's help, and for His glory, to manifest and encourage, by teaching, and by example, "truth which is after godliness," and "through the power of the Holy Spirit," and under His constant control, to utilize, with full ability, every opportunity to bear the abiding "fruit of the righteous," and "of the spirit," and, from the center of God's will, to pray "according to His will" both for self, and for others, until momently, my Lord comes again for me in life, or I behold His glory in death.
II. The Conduct, Eph. 5:19-21
A. Spiritual Communion with the Brethren and the Lord
B. Thankful Hearts
C. Gracious Human Relationships
See Rom. 12:3-5; Eph. 4:1-3, 32; 5:1-2
III. The Conditions
A. Positively Considered
1. Dependence upon the Holy Spirit, Gal. 5:16
A Spirit-controlled lifestyle, Romans 12:1, 2
2. Dynamic Application of the Word of God, Col. 3:12-23, especially, v. 16
Note: The manifestation of "the word of Christ" is the same as that of being "filled with the Spirit" (Eph. 5:19-21).
"'The word of Christ' is the word spoken by Christ. This expression is not limited to His utterances while on earth in His humiliation, but refers to the entire body of truth as given through the N.T. writers. 'Dwell in' is
enoikeo. The word
oikos means 'a home."
Oikeo means 'to live in a home.' The exhortation is to the effect that the Christian is to so yield himself to the Word that there is a certain at-homeness of the Word in his being. The Word should be able to feel at home in his heart. The saint should give it unrestricted liberty in his life. 'Richly' is
plousios, 'abundantly.' Not only must the saint be yielded to the Word, but he must have a good knowledge of it. The Holy Spirit uses the Word of God that we know as He talks to us and guides our lives. He can efficiently talk to us to the extent to which we know the Word. That is the language He uses."
[Kenneth S. Wuest, Wuest's Word Studies From the Greek New Testament. Volume I: Ephesians and Colossians. Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1975, pp. 226-27.]
Prayer to begin each day from the late Dr. Russell R. Camp:
Formula: Holy Spirit, I come to you in the new nature to experience your continued control. By the food of the Word of God, and by the force of your power, let my personality become a garment through which You move among men to manifest the Lord Jesus Christ, and to accomplish His mission with His methods. Use my body to pray the prayers, live the life, think the thoughts, work the works, and travel the trails of the Lord Jesus Christ to the glory of God the Father.
B. Negatively Considered
1. Danger of Grieving the Holy Spirit; Issue: Sin (context: Eph. 4:25-32)
2. Danger of Quenching the Holy Spirit; Issue: The Will of God (context:
I Thess. 5:16-19)
IV. The Climate
A. Confession of Sins, I John 1:9
B. Daily Yielding Oneself to God (Submission), Rom. 6:11-13; 12:1, 2.
C. Daily Dependence upon God (Commitment), Gal. 5:16; 2:20
D. Diet: Personal and Family Bible Reading; Church and Sunday School Attendance.
E. Exercise: Prayer, Private and Public; Service; Witness; a Ministry in your Local
"Christ's people were never meant to live at the world's sea-level. We are meant to have the mountain view, the long view, the wide view, the really understanding view. We are meant to see the happenings of our time in the light of inspired prophecy, through the eyes of the Holy Spirit, from the high view-point of the divine purpose, and with our gaze on the ultimate victory of Christ. . .
But how shall we keep that high altitude of vision in our daily life? We must live near to the Scriptures. We must love the place of prayer. We must guard against easy-going toleration of things in our lives which grieve the Holy Spirit, and rob us of His inward witness. Many of us have been taught to distrust new-year resolves; but they can mean great blessing if they are made in dependence on the Holy Spirit. It could mean untold blessing to go into this new year having made the following covenant with our Lord: I WILL GIVE NOT LESS THAN THIRTY MINUTES EACH DAY TO PRAYER. I WILL COMMEND MY SAVIOUR IN EARNEST CONVERSATION TO AT LEAST ONE PERSON EACH WEEK. I WILL READ CONSECUTIVELY EACH DAY FROM BOTH OLD AND NEW TESTAMENTS. I WILL ALLOW NOTHING IN MY LIFE WHICH MIGHT IN ANY WAY COMPROMISE THE NAME OF JESUS. If we were thus to live through this incoming year, it could only prove a year of peaceful hope."
[J. Sidlow Baxter, Awake, My Heart. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1964, p. 13.]
Suggested Bible Reading Plans
O.T. 929 Chapters
N. T. 260 Chapters
Total 1,189 Chapters divided by 365 days = 3.26 Chapters per day
1. Read 3 chapters per day for 3 days, and 4 chapters every 4th day.
2. Read 99 chapters per month for 11 months and 100 chapters for the 12th month.
3. Bible Reading Schedule, "Through the Bible in a Year," printed by Good News Publishers, 1300 Crescent Street, Wheaton, IL 60187, Item #7W49. This schedule enables you to read the Old or New Testaments or both. Simply keep it in your Bible and cross off the portions as you read them.
4. "Bible Reading Schedule," Faith Baptist Bible College & Theological Seminary, 1900 NW Fourth Street, Ankeny, IA 50021; (515) 964-0601. This schedule divides up into three bookmarks. You read two Old Testament chapters every day; one Poetry chapter each weekday; and one New Testament chapter each weekday. This totals to reading four chapters each weekday and two chapters each on Saturday and Sunday.
Note to Pastors: Reread the section in the back of Halley's Bible Handbook which begins,
" THE MOST IMPORTANT THING IN THIS BOOK IS This Simple Suggestion: THAT EACH CHURCH HAVE A CONGREGATIONAL PLAN OF BIBLE READING and THAT THE PASTOR'S SERMON BE FROM THE PART OF THE BIBLE READ THE PAST WEEK Thus connecting The Pastor's Preaching with the People's Bible Reading."
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