Sunday, August 6, 2017

Who Does God Favor - Part 2

In this study we examine how wisdom and doing good deeds for other bring you favor from God.

Who Does God Favor? Part 2

  • 2 Chronicles 1:10-12
  • Proverbs 8:34-36
  • Proverbs 4:7-10
  • Luke 2:52
  • James 1:5-8
  • Psalms 111:10
  • Galatians 6:7-8
  • Ephesians 6:7-8
  • Proverbs 28:27
  • Proverbs 19:17

How many of you believe that God is your source?
  • The supplier of your needs?
  • Your provider?

If God is your source then what does it mean when you complain about getting a raise?
  • Who should you be complaining to?
    • Your employer...or your source?

2 Chronicles 1:10-12
10 "Give me now wisdom and knowledge, that I may go out and come in before this people, for who can rule this great people of Yours?"
11 God said to Solomon, "Because you had this in mind, and did not ask for riches, wealth or honor, or the life of those who hate you, nor have you even asked for long life, but you have asked for yourself wisdom and knowledge that you may rule My people over whom I have made you king,
12 wisdom and knowledge have been granted to you. And I will give you riches and wealth and honor, such as none of the kings who were before you has possessed nor those who will come after you."
  • Solomon became the richest king ever
  • Solomon received  riches, wealth and honor greater than any king in the history of the world
  • Solomon also became the wisest person ever

Solomon had favor

Why did Solomon gain favor from God?
  1. Not because he had faith
  2. Not because he was the most righteous king ever
  3. Not because he spoke a word
  4. It was because of one request
    1. But that request wasn’t for favor
    2. The request wasn’t for prosperity or riches

Solomon never prayed for riches
  • Solomon wasn't believing that God would make him prosper
  • Solomon didn't sow a seed into a ministry
  • Solomon didn't  get a prayer rag
  • Solomon didn’t speak it and claim it
  • Solomon didn't have a preacher lay hands on him

One thing we know is that we don't need to pray to ask God for answers He’s already given us
We don't need to ask God whether to kill our neighbor when they do something we don't like
  • God already answered us
  • It's in His word
  • “Though shall not kill”
  • “Love your neighbor”

We don’t need to ask God about things He’s already instructed us on in His word.
  • That's one reason we have  unanswered prayer
  • Asking questions God has already answered

Did God already instruct us on how to get Favor?
  • Did God already tell you how to get a raise?

We’re going to examine and analyze the systems that God has put in place for receiving His favor
  • From a biblical perspective
  • What specific instructions are in the Bible regarding favor?

When we bring ourselves and our lives into agreement with God’s Word, we are positioned to receive His blessing.

Review of “Who Does God Favor?”

  • The favor of God can be described as “tangible evidence that a person has the approval of the Lord.”
  • This doesn't mean that everyone who is prosperous or healthy has found favor with God.
  • This doesn’t mean the person who has favor is walking correctly in every area of their life.
  • Favor gives you God’s attention
  • 7 things that bring favor from God:
  • 1. Righteousness
    • Being in good moral standing
    • Following the law
    • God surrounds the righteous with a shield
  • 2. Seeking Good
    • You should want good things to happen to people you don’t know.
    • It should be evidenced by your thoughts, concerns, and actions
    • Are you happy when good things happen to other people?
        • Even when those same things don’t happen to you...
  • 3. Knowing God’s Ways
    • Do you want to know God’s character and understand God?
    • Or do you just want to know about the things that benefit to you?
    • Do you care about God as a person?
  • 4. Humility
    • Not esteeming yourself too high
    • Humility references a state of feeling of lowness as compared to God
  • 5. Fearing God
    • Do you revere God and His Word as Holy?
    • Do you respect God as the final authority
  • 6. Love and Kindness
    • mutual outward help
    • forgiveness of offenses
    • sympathy of feeling, which leads to interchange of thought
    • This is the only trait that promises favor from both God and man
  • 7. Marriage
    • God says that He favors marriage
    • But He also gives many warnings about marrying the wrong person (e.g. a non-Christian)

Who Does God Favor? Part 2

A measure of favor comes to everyone
  • But some have more favor than others

Favor means to give:
  • approval, support, or liking for someone or something
  • Provide with advantages
  • To show special privileges

Your thoughts, actions and behavior determine your favor
  • It’s not only God, it’s you!

3 Things that bring you the favor of God:
  1. Wisdom
  2. Doing Good Deeds
  3. Other People


Proverbs 8:34-36
34Blessed are those who listen to me [wisdom],
watching daily at my doors,
waiting at my doorway.
35For those who find me find life
and receive favor from the Lord.
36But those who fail to find me harm themselves;
all who hate me love death.”
  • Those who find wisdom find life
  • Those who find wisdom find favor from God
  • If you don’t find wisdom you’re harming yourself
  • If you hate wisdom you love death
  • What do we call people who hate wisdom?
    • Fools

Wisdom is the application of knowledge
  • A Fool could have the knowledge, but can’t correctly apply it

Wisdom is based on the ability to see differences
  • Difference in an opportunity
  • Difference between right and wrong
  • Difference in a moment
  • Difference in an attitude

And upon recognizing the difference, wisdom is responding correctly to that difference

Example: stock: buy low sell high
  • Most new investors will sell when their stock drops
  • When the stock goes up they want to keep it because it’s been doing good
    • It might go higher

Proverbs 4:7-10
7 "The beginning of wisdom is: Acquire wisdom; And with all your acquiring, get understanding.
8 "Prize her, and she will exalt you; She will honor you if you embrace her.
9 "She will place on your head a garland of grace; She will present you with a crown of beauty."
10 Hear, my son, and accept my sayings And the years of your life will be many.
  • We should pursue wisdom
  • Wisdom will give you long life

Who is wise?  One who can learn from anyone.
--Jewish proverb

Luke 2:52
52 And Jesus kept increasing in wisdom and stature[age], and in favor with God and men.
  • Jesus increased in wisdom
  • We see the link between wisdom and favor
  • As Jesus grew older He grew wiser
    • And He also grew in favor
  • We can increase our favor
    • By gaining wisdom

How to Get Wisdom

  1. Pray for it
  2. Fear God
  3. Study the Bible (especially Proverbs)

Ask For Wisdom

James 1:5-8
5 But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him.
6 But he must ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind.
7 For that man ought not to expect that he will receive anything from the Lord,
8 being a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.
  • If you ask God for wisdom He will give it to you
  • We should pray for wisdom

Fear of the Lord

Which is also a way to get favor (from the last lesson)

Psalms 111:10
The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; A good understanding have all those who do His commandments; His praise endures forever.
  • In this verse we have
    • Wisdom
    • Righteousness
    • Praise
  • We looked at fearing or respecting God in part one
  • If you're considering God in your decisions you'll make wise choices

Example: pastor tells you not to sit versus a child

Praise brings favor
  • I believe praise brings access
  • Most people I know that say  “God speaks to them” worship God when they’re alone

Study the Book of Proverbs

Proverbs is the book of wisdom

It was written by Solomon

Doing Good Deeds for Others

Reaping what you sow

Galatians 6:7-8
7Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. 8Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.
  • It’s “what” you sow you shall reap
    • It’s not “to whom” you sow
    • It's not “where” you sow
  • The recipient doesn't need to appreciate it
  • God will appreciate it and do it for you
  • You don't necessarily reap from the person you sowed to

Ephesians 6:7-8
With good will [eunoia] render service, as to the Lord, and not to men,
8 knowing that whatever good thing each one does, this he will receive back from the Lord, whether slave or free.

eúnoia { yoo'-noy-ah}
kindness; euphemistically, conjugal duty
—benevolence, good will.
  • If you don’t want to please your spouse then probably don’t want to please anyone
  • Isn’t that what “love” is?

Again we see this is wanting good for others.
  • Wanting to satisfy the needs of others

Giving to the Poor

Proverbs 28:27
He who gives to the poor will never want, but he who shuts his eyes will have many curses.
  • If you give to poor people you will never become poor
  • If you ignore poor people you will be cursed

Proverbs 19:17
17 One who is gracious to a poor man lends to the LORD, And He will repay him for his good deed.
  • If you give to the poor God owes you
  • Giving to the poor is getting debt from God
  • This isn’t just for the righteous or just for Christians
  • Every wealthy person that I’ve heard speak stresses the importance of donating or tithing when asked how they stay rich
    • Even non-Christians
  • God takes on the debt of the poor

Tithing isn’t “giving to the poor”
  • Tithing is giving to God
  • Tithing is giving to the church

Jesus told the rich man that he needed to give his riches to the poor to get to heaven
  • Not to the church


We saw in the last lesson that God rewards those who “seek good” for others
Now we’re seeing that God favors those who put that in action
God rewards those who want good things to happen to others

  • Many people are upset when they see good things happening to others
    • Especially those who they view as “bad people”
    • They think “that person doesn't deserve that”!
  • The irony is that this behavior is what keeps you from receiving favor
  • “Seeking good” means wanting good things to happen for others
  • Ephesians 6:7-8 tells us that when you want good things to happen to others you receive favor

We see that these concepts of favor mirrors the two commands of Jesus:
  1. Love God with all your heart, mind and soul
  2. Love your neighbor as you love yourself

in part 1, We saw that “fearing God” brings you favor
  • Referencing God
  • Respecting God
  • Obeying God's commandments

Love the Lord your God

But now we see again that “wanting good things to happen to others” brings you favor
  • Desiring good for your neighbor brings you favor
  • You're supposed to love your neighbor in the same way that you love yourself
    • Not the same amount
    • But in the same way
  • Everyone wants good things for themselves
  • Loving your neighbor “as you love yourself” is wanting your neighbor to have the same good things that you want for yourself
  • If you want health you want health for your neighbor
  • If you want to be married then you want your neighbor to be married
  • If you want riches you want your neighbor to be rich
  • If you like designer purses or nice cars then you want your neighbor to have designer purses or nice cars
  • Even if you can't afford them for yourself

Are you happy for a person who has something you want?
  • when you don’t have it yet?

I’m not talking about your family or someone close to you
  • I'm talking about your neighbor

Do you want good for your neighbor?

So what we see is that...being a hater is blocking your favor!


Favor is not given to those who need it
  • Favor is obtained by our actions or deeds
  • We don’t all get an equal amount of favor

Favor is a response to your choices, actions and words.
  • Favor can be obtained.
  • Favor can be increased

Jesus increased in favor

We have now examined bible verses that tell us that the favor of God is the result of:
  1. Righteousness
  1. Seeking Good for Others
  2. Knowing God’s Ways
  3. Being Humble
  4. Fearing/Revering God
  5. Love and Kindness
  6. Being Married
  7. Obtaining Wisdom
  8. Doing Good Deeds
    1. Sowing and Reaping
    2. Giving to the poor
  9. Being Around Those With Favor

Why should we want favor?
  • One day of favor can be more than a year's worth of work and preparation
  • Favor makes life easier
  • You can use favor to serve and honor God
  • Favor is the shortcut for success
  • You get favor from God because you got God’s attention
  • You get favor as a response to taking God’s advice
    • Even if you didn’t know it was God’s advice

Who had favor?
  • Noah had favor
  • Abraham had favor
  • Joseph had favor
  • Moses had favor
  • David had favor
  • Jesus grew in the favor with God and men

The believer who has God's favor is unstoppable
  • If you have favor...your education doesn't matter
  • If you have favor...your skill doesn't matter
  • If you have favor... your age, your height, how attractive you are...don’t matter

All that matters is that God’s hand is upon your life
God’s face shines upon you

Presenter: Michael Leadon


God Doesn’t Favor Who Man Favors

God doesn’t necessarily favor those who are favored by the culture

God Favors the Younger Child

The Jews favored the oldest child, but God chose:
  • Jacob (over Esau)
  • David
    • David was the smallest
    • even Samuel didn't consider him the most likely
  • Abel (over Cain)
  • Isaac (over Ishmael)
  • Joseph’s son

The child from the favored wife
  • Ishmael and Isaac

Giving to the Poor

Proverbs 22:9
He who is generous will be blessed, for he gives some of his food to the poor.


According to Strong’s Concordance wisdom is the Greek word sophia (G4678) and it means:
wisdom, broad and full of intelligence; used of the knowledge of very diverse matters
  1. the wisdom which belongs to men
    1. specifically the varied knowledge of things human and divine, acquired by acuteness and experience, and summed up in maxims and proverbs
    2. the science and learning
    3. the act of interpreting dreams and always giving the sagest advice
    4. the intelligence evidenced in discovering the meaning of some mysterious number or vision
    5. skill in the management of affairs
    6. devout and proper prudence in intercourse with men non-Christians, skill and discretion in imparting Christian truth
    7. the knowledge and practice of the requisites for godly and upright living

Seeking Favor

2 Kings 13:3-5
So the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel, and He gave them continually into the hand of Hazael king of Aram, and into the hand of Ben-hadad the son of Hazael.
4 Then Jehoahaz entreated the favor of the LORD, and the LORD listened to him; for He saw the oppression of Israel, how the king of Aram oppressed them.
5 The LORD gave Israel a deliverer, so that they escaped from under the hand of the Arameans; and the sons of Israel lived in their tents as formerly.
  • One man asking for favor resulted in a whole nation being freed from oppression
  • This was favor for one instance whereas David asked for lasting favor


As You Love Yourself

God's Favor : How to Get it - How to Keep it

Dr. Mike Murdock - 7 Decisions That Control The Flow of Favor In Your Life

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