Saturday, March 25, 2017

Leaning On Your Own Understanding

In this study we look at the consequences of doubting God and examine how we will often try to solve our issues our own way instead of taking God's suggestions.

Proverbs 3:5
Exodus 17:3-7
Numbers 20:7-13
Proverbs 3:5-8
John 3:16

Proverbs 3:5
5Trust in the LORD with all your heart
           And do not lean on your own understanding.

Doubting God

Exodus 17:3-7
3But the people were thirsty for water there, and they grumbled against Moses. They said, “Why did you bring us up out of Egypt to make us and our children and livestock die of thirst?”
4Then Moses cried out to the Lord, “What am I to do with these people? They are almost ready to stone me.”
5The Lord answered Moses, “Go out in front of the people. Take with you some of the elders of Israel and take in your hand the staff with which you struck the Nile, and go. 6I will stand there before you by the rock at Horeb. Strike the rock, and water will come out of it for the people to drink.” So Moses did this in the sight of the elders of Israel. 7And he called the place Massaha and Meribahb because the Israelites quarreled and because they tested the Lord saying, “Is the Lord among us or not?”
  • Meribah means quarreling

God Got the Glory

  • God stood with Moses
  • The implication here is that the result of the water coming from the rock was that God got the glory for it.  

Miracles are meant to glorify God

God won't get any glory if it seems overcomeable.
  • Only when the odds seemed impossible
  • Sometimes it has to seem impossible to you!

You don’t hear testimonies where people figured out the solution on their own.

A trial is a test that happens when something is bigger than your ability to fix it.

Faith in Miracles

  • The Israelites had lost faith
  • They needed a miracle in order to trust God
  • God gave them a sign to prove He was with them
  • They wanted to know “is the Lord among us or not”
  • Some Christians need evidence of the Holy Spirit’s presence in order to believe God is real

Some people need to attend a church where
  • People are healed
  • Demons are cast out
  • People prophecy
  • People get slain in the Spirit

They need proof through miracles that God is there

Some churches say you aren’t saved unless you speak in tongues

Jesus’ signs were meant to draw people to Him
  • Not to keep them with Him
  • The sign were meant to convert nonbelievers
  • Not to strengthen the faith of believers
  • The miracles of the disciples were meant to draw people to Jesus
  • The signs should point to the cross
  • The signs should be to give God the glory

Story: family going to Disneyland
  • Stopped at the sign


The Sin of the Garden

Adam and Eve doubted God
  • They let Satan convince them that the consequences weren’t as bad as God said
  • They let their desire to be God overrule God’s command

Leaning on Your Own Understanding

Numbers 20:7-13
7The Lord said to Moses, 8“Take the staff, and you and your brother Aaron gather the assembly together. Speak to that rock before their eyes and it will pour out its water. You will bring water out of the rock for the community so they and their livestock can drink.”
9So Moses took the staff from the Lord’s presence, just as he commanded him. 10He and Aaron gathered the assembly together in front of the rock and Moses said to them, “Listen, you rebels, must we bring you water out of this rock?” 11Then Moses raised his arm and struck the rock twice with his staff. Water gushed out, and the community and their livestock drank.
12But the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “Because you did not trust in me enough to honor me as holy in the sight of the Israelites, you will not bring this community into the land I give them.”
13These were the waters of Meribah [quarreling],a where the Israelites quarreled with the Lord and where he was proved holy among them.
  • God told Moses to talk to the rock, but he resorted to what worked for him last time
    • This was the same place - Meribah

Leaning on Your Own Understanding

  • Moses had an experience of getting water from a rock by striking it
  • He did it the way it worked in the past

Sometimes we don't follow God’s commands because:
  • Don't believe it
  • Our way is quicker
  • More pleasurable way

Sometimes God is trying to do a new thing and we resort to what has always worked in the past.  We do this because of fear.  We do this to be in control.

Example: growing the bible study

Lack of Faith

  • Why did God say Moses and Aaron wouldn’t enter the holy land?
    • Because they didn’t trust Him
  • God clearly states that it’s because Moses didn't “trust me”
    • It’s a lack of faith
  • Moses resorted to doing what worked for Him in the past instead of following God’s direction
  • We try to do things in our own strength

Honoring God

Who stood with Moses the first time?
  • God
Who stood with him the second time?
  • Aaron

“Because you did not trust in me enough to honor me”
  • God did not receive the honor Moses and Aaron received the honor
  • Must “we” bring you water from this rock.

God Can Use Anyone

God punished Moses.  
God was unhappy with Moses’ actions.
God still performed the miracle.

If someone has spiritual gifts does that mean God approves of their behavior?
  • Preaching
  • Singing
  • Evangelism
  • Healing
  • Prophet
  • Teaching

Because a ministry is large does it mean God approves of it?
  • Not necessarily

God Won’t Turn His Back on His Sheep

This teaches us that God's love for His people is so great, he will use an imperfect instrument.
  • Because God uses someone is no evidence that they themselves are right with God
  • The people still needed water regardless of if Moses was obedient
  • Because God shows favor to someone it doesn’t mean everything they did/do is righteous
  • Because God works through a person doesn't mean they are in right standing with God
  • A bad shepherd won’t necessarily stop God’s blessing
  • God can use anyone

God would deal with Moses, but the people needed water - and so it was provided.

The Israelites probably thought Moses was in right standing with God
  • The presence of God is not an absolute measure of what is right before God.
  • Abundance isn’t always a sign of God's’ approval

Example: preachers got caught
  • The previous Sunday someone got saved

Don't put your faith in the gifted person.

God Won’t Turn His Back on His Servants

  • God won't turn His back on you if you're serving Him
  • God didn't let Moses be embarrassed by not providing water
  • Moses was as loyal as they come
  • Moses wasn’t getting any personal gain for following God
    • Being in the desert 40 years
    • He wasn't a slave in Egypt
    • He didn't get to see the promised land

If God ordained what you're doing He will give you the grace to see it thru.  
If you did it on your own God doesn't owe you that grace.

Faith in Ourselves

Is your faith “I can figure it out” type of faith?
  • I have a solution
  • It makes sense to me
  • That seems fair

Example:Juin need job

The Benefits of Faith

Peace / Health

Proverbs 3:5-8
5Trust in the LORD with all your heart
           And do not lean on your own understanding.
     6In all your ways acknowledge Him,
           And He will make your paths straight.
     7Do not be wise in your own eyes;
           Fear the LORD and turn away from evil.
     8It will be healing to your body
           And refreshment to your bones.
  • Don’t lean on your own understanding
  • If you give God the He will make it easier to do what you're trying to do
  • Don’t think you have the answers
  • You will be healed

Verse 8 says that trusting in the Lord will “be healing to your body”.
  • What could this mean?


“Stress as a contributor to heart disease has been accepted by the medical community at least since the 1970s with the publication of the book Type A Behavior and Your Heart by Drs. Friedman and Rosenman.

Since then, factors such as low self-esteem, low socioeconomic status, inadequate social support, anger, hostility, and hopelessness have all been identified as causes of disease.  

Stress may translate to dis-ease by altering the sympathetic nervous system (elevated adrenaline), the adrenal axis, inflammation, blood vessel malfunction, and increased clotting of the blood.

If stress can harm the heart, is the opposite true?  

Fortunately we now have ample evidence that methods of avoiding or decreasing stress promote cardiovascular health and wellness.
-- Why Stress Can Kill You: A Cardiologist Explains  by Dr. Joel Kahn

Example: Dick Gregory - Kidney disease
  • African Americans constitute more than 35% of all patients in the U.S. receiving dialysis for kidney failure, but only represent 13.2% of the overall U.S. population.
  • It's not because it's hereditary
  • Why don't they have it in Africa?
  • Stress aids in causing diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease
  • All of those are caused because of stress

When you have faith you are turning your problems over to God and not worrying about them
  • It will improve your long term health

When we trust in ourselves we’re only at peace when we're in control.
When we trust God we’re at peace all the time.


  • The Israelites doubted whether God was with them
    • They needed miracles to prove that He was
    • Some Christians need miraculous displays of the Holy Spirit in order to feel that God is present
    • The sin of Adam and Eve was caused by doubt
  • Instead of obeying God and speaking to the rock, Moses resorted to what worked before
    • God can use anyone that He pleases to do His will
    • Just because God is using someone to do His will doesn’t mean that they are following God in every area of their life
  • We shouldn’t have “I can figure it out” type of faith
    • We need to build faith to the level that we trust God when we see no way out
  • The benefit of faith is peace
    • Stress increases the risk of heart disease and many other diseases
    • Therefore faith will help maintain your health and possibly give you longer life

This fact brings a new meaning to the verse:

John 3:16 - For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life.               

Presenter: Michael Leadon

  • We saw that the Israelites doubted God and wanted proof that He was with them
  • Moses drew water from a rock by hitting it with a stick as God commanded to prove that God was with them
  • Some Christians put our faith in supernatural displays from God such as healing, speaking in tongues, words of prophecy, or other manifestations of the Holy Spirit in order to believe that God is present
  • Adam and Eve sinned against God because they allowed Satan to make them doubt God
  • We saw in another story that God told Moses to speak to the rock to get water
  • But instead Moses hit the rock to bring out water
  • Moses resorted to what had worked for him in the past instead of following God’s command
  • Sometimes in our lives we resort to doing things based on our own understanding instead of following what God tells us
  • We sometimes lean on our own understanding
  • Even though Moses disobeyed God, God still gave the Israelites water
  • This showed us that just because there is a good outcome or because miracles are present doesn’t mean that everything is in line with God’s will
  • This also showed us that God can use anyone He chooses to fulfill His will
  • God will not abandon His sheep nor will He abandon His servant
  • One of the results of faith is peace which leads to lower stress
  • Stress causes many diseases therefore faith can give you a better quality of living and literally increase your lifespan


Why Stress Can Kill You: A Cardiologist Explains

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