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Notes for 2nd July

#soulhack (sorry but the talk wasn’t recorded this week)

The Truth That Sets You Free

Ben spoke about how any issues in our behaviour are not effectively fixed by focussing our attention on the behaviour, but rather on whatever belief we have that is driving the behaviour.

The biggest belief that influences our behaviour is the belief we have to the question, “Who am I?”  As life unfolds our experience begins to give us the answer to this question… we become the “you” that life has formed.

But often these beliefs don’t line up with the truth that God want’s us to know – and it is this truth that will free us up to behave and live like a child of God – John 8:32

It is important that we receive and believe God’s truth for our lives, even when life has suggested a different truth.

Ben talked about two key truths:

1. THE TRUTH OF THE FATHER’S LOVE FOR US

Look at 1 John 4:10-12.  How does this link believing the truth of God’s love and our behaviour? What can we learn about the process?

It’s meant to be ‘receive love and then act it out’ but often we think ‘act properly and then be acceptable enough to receive love’.  How might this evidence itself in our lives and relationships? How might this become an issue in church life?

Watchman Nee on the story of the Lost Son:

In reading the story of the prodigal son, most people are impressed with all the troubles the prodigal meets; they are occupied in thinking what a bad time he is having. But that is not the point of the parable. ‘My son was lost, and is found’ – there is the heart of the story. It is not a question of what the son suffers, but of what the Father loses. He is the sufferer. He is the loser. A sheep is lost: whose is the loss? The shepherd’s. A coin is lost: whose is the loss? The woman’s. A son is lost: whose is the loss? The father’s.

Brennan Manning:

Define yourself radically as one beloved by God. This is the true self. Every other identity is illusion.

How might this truth have a practical impact in our lives? What areas of our everyday lives would be freed up if we really, deeply believed that the Father absolutely loved us, at all times, in all situations?

 

2. WE ARE IN CHRIST

Ben then talked about the truth of this love – that we aren’t loved in some vague, unspecific manner, but God’s love is expressed in the sending of Jesus and what he did in order to bring us back into God’s family.

The Bible expresses our intimacy into the reality of God by talking about us being “in Christ” – this profound sense that we are completely part of Jesus and all his righteous holiness.

Look at Colossians 3:1-4.  This passage has a suggestion of what we should do to grasp this truth. What do you think this means for our 21st Century lives?

In Romans 7, Paul talks about how, without Jesus we were bound to the Law – back to trying to earn, through our behaviour, acceptability for God’s love.  Now we are In Christ, everything Jesus has access to we do.  So all the things that are true of Christ, are now true of “__________” (insert your name here!)

List the things that are true of Jesus that we may struggle to believe are true of us?

Look at Hebrews 10:19-25.  Again it talks about what we believe and then how we therefore act.  What insights does this give us for our lives?

Look at Galatians 5:16-26. Ben suggested that the command ‘Walk by the Spirit’ (Galatians 5:16 NIV) means to agree with what God says about you, not the beliefs that life may have formed. What does this passage suggest to help us do that.

 

Finally, this all rests on the idea of changing our belief, which is easier said than done. How might we actually go about this? What practical steps can we take?

 

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Posted on 3rd July 2017
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