MHMBCOC W.A.R. Bible Study 5 People #4

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

Mount Hermon Missionary Baptist Church of Chicago

 W.A.R. Bible Study

5 People You Need in Your Life – Lesson #4

“People That Correct You!” 

 “The Need for A Nathan”

2 Samuel 12:1-14

A true friend dares to let you know your mistake rather than agreeing with you over what is wrong (unknown)

Taking correction can be a hard pill to swallow. However, correction is crucial to our spiritual development. Over the past 17 years, as a pastor, I have been corrected by church members, family, friends and foes and it’s not easy. However, I have noticed a pattern in the lives of those who receive correction and those who do not.

Throughout my 17 years serving as Pastor of the Mount Hermon Missionary Baptist Church of Chicago I have encountered people that will not receive correction; especially from me. The irony comes in the fact that whenever correction was given it was some adjustment that needed to be made to enhance one’s relationship with God, i.e., increasing one’s prayer life, giving God more time, studying God’s Word or forgiveness. As a consequence, I became the recipient of their rebellion and the activities in their life seemed to be infused with a rebelliousness across the landscape. They were not only rebellious towards my leadership but their rebelliousness surfaced on their jobs, in family and was connected to their immediate circle of friends.

On the other hand, I have witnessed lives that have been transformed, given vision and experience the Grace of God on amazing levels because they embraced a posture of humility that was open to correction. Receiving scriptural insights and applying them has reset the narrative for their lives.

This experience has taught me a valuable lesson that people that rebel against spiritual leadership because of spiritual correction are really rebellious towards God. When correction is given accurately and scriptural and resisted it is a spiritual issue. People with spiritual issues resist Godly change that could make their lives better. They have a problem with authority; especially Godly authority. Spiritual leadership is not the issue. The issue is rebellion against God.

I have learned that I cannot give correction and not receive it. Everyone has an opinion but God has a way of sending people into our lives that are sensitive and saturated in scripture to help point out our wrongs so that we can make them right. Everyone needs someone that can correct them.

Rev. T. A. Smith is a friend sent from God in my life. We met around 2009 through divine circumstances. It was meant for us to be friends. Rev. Smith holds no punches. He is a straight shooter that has a strong biblical worldview. Our conversations are not idle. We joke and laugh but the basis of our conversations are substantive. We deal with the “open wounds” of ministry in our conversations. It has been through these conversations that I have been convicted by the Word of God to change a pattern of thought, or adjust a line of reasoning that would be detrimental to me or my ministry. Although he is younger than I, his correction has been received because of his straightforwardness, sensitivity and knowledge of the scriptures. Thank you Rev. T.A. Smith for being a friend that corrects me.

Context

God sent Nathan, a friend of King David, to correct him. David being the most powerful man in Israel had his way with another man’s wife, Bathsheba. After he discovered Bathsheba was pregnant with his child he had her husband killed in an attempt to cover the sin. The whole situation left a path of destruction. David became convicted of his sin but did not repent. God sent Nathan, his friend, to correct David.

Nathan approached David and shared a story of a rich man who had many sheep but he killed a poor man’s one little ewe lamb to feed an out of town traveler. When David heard the story he became angry and said this man shall surely die and then he must restore the lamb four-fold because he had no pity. It was then that Nathan said to David, “You are the man!” It was then that David repented unto the Lord and said, “I have sinned against the Lord!” Nathan said, “The Lord has put away thy sin and thou shall not die.”

Questions

  1. How did Nathan’s correction allow David to see the destructive path he was on?
  2. How does the following scripture apply? Proverbs 15:32
  3. How did Nathan’s correction show David the divine path to take?
  4. How does the following scripture apply? Proverbs 9:9
  5. When giving correction why is there a need to be sensitive to the person’s situation and how does Proverbs 14:12apply?
  6. When giving correction why should it be saturated by scripture?

Group Discussion on Biblical Principles

Read the following scriptures and discuss how they apply to the need for correction.

  • Proverbs 15:32
  • Proverbs 9:9
  • Proverbs 1:5
  • Proverbs 19:20
  • Proverbs 28:26
  • Proverbs 4:13

Group Discussion Questions on Correction

  1. Why is it so hard to receive correction?
  2. How do we know when correction is from God?
  3. How can we be blinded to our wrongs?
  4. Why is correction needed?
  5. How would you correct a friend?
  6. Why is timing so important when correcting someone?
  7. Why are the scriptures critical to correction?
  8. Why is sensitivity critical to correction?
  9. How can correction hurt or help a friendship?

In Him!

 

5 People #4 Pic.jpg

 

Dr. Oscar T. Moses 

 

 

 

 

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MHMBCOC W.A.R. Bible Study 5 People

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

MHMBCOC – W.A.R. Bible Study

5 People You Need in Your Life – Lesson #3

“People That Celebrate You!”-  A Heart Touched by God

1 Samuel 10:26

One of the most important decisions you’ll ever make is who you’ll allow access into your life. We encounter different people that play different roles. We must learn how to adjustto the people we encounter. Let me be clear… There are Haters. Haters want to knock you down a notch and to do it they will launch a smeer campaign to discredit you, diminsish you, disapprove of your every move. They monitor your success and prevent it if they can. They are assigned by Satan to create tension in your life. There are Tolerators. Tolerators endure you. They do not hate you, the chemistry is not there but your paths cross by obligation. Individual obligations bring the relationship together. They tolerate you because they do not want their true feelings exposed. They will not affirm you. You may continue to invite yourself along to outings because they will not tell you not to come. They are too busy to answer your text or phone calls. Then there are Celebrators. Celebrators identify you as special and created for a larger purpose. They bring out the absolute best in you and push you towards it. They love you for who you are; short, tall or whatever package you came in. Robert Ingall said, “We rise by lifting others.” Celebrators rise because they are always lifting others up to help them rise.This lesson is designed to teach this truth; the people that Celebrate you, their hearts have been touched by God and they have been assigned to:

  1. Appreciate what you bring to the table; that is your personal contribution.
  2. Respect who you are; that is your undeniable character.
  3. Encourage what you do; that is your individual conduct.

How do you handle life when you are unsure of yourself and the people you expect to celebrate you are merely tolerating you? What do you do when the volume of your haters voice has been turned up to assassinate your character, besmirch your reputation and others merely tolerate you? Such was the case in this biblical account found in 1 Samuel 10. In this passage the Word of God teaches us how God will touch the hearts of some people to affirm and celebrate you when others hate and tolerate you.

Context

King Saul quickly discovered that the annointing of God did not come without resistance. Saul wasannointed by God to be the first king of Israel. The Prophet Samuel called all of the people of Israel before the LORD at Mizpah.  The people wanted a king and God obliged them. From the tribe of Benjamin God chose Saul, the son of Kish. At the inaguration  ceremony of Saul he could not be found for he hid. The people prayed to God and the Lord revealed where Saul was and brought him out. There he was, their first king, King Saul. King Saul stood among the people looking valiant. He stood  head taller than any of the others. Samuel said to all the people, “Do you see the man the LORD has chosen? There is no one like him among all the people.”Then the people shouted, “Long live the king!”Then Samuel explained to the people the regulations of the kingship. He wrote them down on a scroll and deposited it before the LORD. When this was done Samuel dismissed the people, each to his own home. Saul also went to his home in Gibeah, accompanied by valiant men who would support him and encourage him. The text describes these men as those whose hearts God had touched. However, there were those who did not percieve the new king in the same light. They were troublemakers the NIV says, or scoundrels the NLT2 says. King James describes them as the Children of Belial. They said in verse
27, “How can this fellow save us?” They despised him and brought him no gifts. But Saul kept his peace.

Group Discussion

  1. How does the following statements relate to this passage?
    1. (Verse 26) When God Annoints You For An Assignment He Will Send Assignment Assistance –
    2. (Verse 27) When God Annoints You For An Assignment Satan Will Send Assignment Assassins
    3. Why do you feel it is difficult for some people to support others?
    4. How does God touch the hearts of people that celebrate you?

How does the following statements help us adjust to being placed in a similar situation as Saul?

  • Remain True to Who God Made You to Be
  • Accept The Fact the Some People Won’t Like You and Never Will
  • Appreciate The People Whose Heart God Has Touched
  • Know When to Hold Your Peace

Group Discussion on Biblical Passages

Read the following passages and discuss the significance of how they relate to this lesson.

  • Proverbs 17:17 (KJV) –
  • Proverbs 15:13 (KJV) –
  • Proverbs 12:25 (KJV) –
  • Romans 12:15 (KJV) –
  • Philippians 2:14-18 (KJV) –
  • John 13:34-35 (KJV) –

Group Discussion Questions

  1. Why do some people find it hard to celebrate others accomplishments?
  2. How does celebrating accomplishments of others demonstrate faith?
  3. Why does God allow people to discourage our accomplishments?
  4. Name a time when your good intentions were misunderstood and no one encouraged you.
  5. Name a time when your approval of someone was rejected by others.
  6. Why is it best not to respond to your critics?
  7. Name 3 ways you can be a friend that celebrates others.

Group Exercise

  1. Each person is to describe 1 characteristic of each person in the group that celebrates them.
  2. Discuss why do you think it is important to celebrate those in leadership?
  3. This Sunday make it your duty to celebrate someone who may be going through a difficult time.

In Him!

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

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Christian Mother’s Love Beyond the Grave

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

MHMBCOC

May 12, 2019

Matthew 20:20-23

 

Context

In this passage Jesus reminded the disciples of His death burial and resurrection. There is a theme that reoccurs pertaining to the kingdom. The kingdom of God was one of Jesus’ most talked about topics, but it’s hardly a well-grasped concept for believers today. If you asked a group of people to define it, you would probably get a variety of answers. “The Kingdom of God transcends time and space.” It is Gods will in heaven being fulfilled in the hearts of men on earth. “Kingdom” means that there is a King somewhere. The Kingdom of God is where His subjects acquiesce to the will, way, word and wishes of God. It is a place where there is peace, love joy and happiness.

All of the talk about the future kingdom excited the disciples. Immediately, they began “bucking” for position in the future world to come. In Chapter 18 they began inquiring to Jesus about who would be the “greatest in the kingdom”?

In chapter 20, all of the talk about the kingdom and God’s throne became a promotional perk for the disciples. They wanted to be their, in plush position, because they were with Jesus when he got His mission off of the ground. They wanted preferential treatment. They wanted status and prestige. This is how we enter into this text. The disciples wanted fame and notability so much that they would go through great lengths to get it. Some scholars believe that this text is two brothers exploiting their mother as a pawn to gain leverage on their eternal reward. So much so, that they would use their mother to help their eternal influence.

Tell me what you think.  All of this talk about the future glory of the kingdomwas enough to make the disciples ecstatic, so much so that they would engage their mother, as a means of influence to give them status. I tell you, a mother’s love goes a long way!

I have seen mothers lie for their kids, pay money for their kids, end marriages for their kids…. Momma will even put her life and reputation on the line for her kids. Such was the case in our text.

Jesus had been talking about the kingdom, it’s splendor and its prestige and His time of death was drawing near. Imagination suggests, that two of his disciples, James and John had ambition to have seats of honor in the kingdom. One wanted to be Vice-President and the other wanted to be Secretary of State. So pehaps they put their momma up to the arduous task of trying to persuade Jesus on their behalf. Are we clear? So by the time of the text they have already expressed to their momma their hearts desire and any good momma wanted the best for her kids. Lets Fast forward.

As Jesus and the 12 made their way up to Jerusalem, Jesus once again reminded the disciples that he would be severely persecuted, killed, buried but on the third day He would be resurrected from the dead. It was about that time that the mother of James and John, the sons of Zebedee, brought them to Jesus, worshipping himand respectfully asked a favor. Her name is Salome. Jesus asked her, “What is your request?” She said without blinking, “Give your word that these two sons of mine will be awarded the highest places of honor in your kingdom, one at your right hand, one at your left hand.” Jesus responded, “You have no idea what you’re asking.” And he said to James and John, “Are you capable of drinking the cup that I’m about to drink?” They said, “Sure, why not?” Jesus said, “Come to think of it, you are going to drink my cup. But as to awarding places of honor, that’s not my business. My Father is taking care of that.”

In the earlier part of this chapter Jesus had just taught the disciples that heaven is Gods business… and here comes James and Johns mother asking Jesus for seating privileges. Before we get down on Salome let’s look at the good qualities about her.

Her Demonstration

Number one, verse 20 says she came to Jesus with her sons and worshipped Him. She was a mother that understood that Jesus was worthy of worship. Mothers there should be times when your child sees that you have a relationship with God. They should see you praying sometimes. Salome demonstrated worship before the Lord but she also demonstrates worship before her children. This mother had no problem with worshipping Jesus while her children saw her. You wonder why church is so dry and cold sometimes? Not enough mothers worshipping in front of their children and therefore, the children think that worship is strange. They need to see the visibility of your faith in Jesus. The lesson today is… your children will deem important what you deem important. If prayer, bible study, coming to church, honoring Godly leadership, and praising God is not important to you; it will not be important to them. How you act in front of your child is an investment. I’m tired if seeing mothers out in the street with head rags and shower caps on with skin tight stretch pants so tight you can see every dimple in their behinds, smoking a blunt and cursing like a sailor. You wonder why youth have no respect today? It’s because a childs first teacher is their parents.

The Expectation

            She desired something from the Lord and Jesus asked her, “What do you want?” Her desire (EXPECTATION) was that her sons would be elevated when they got to the kingdom. She wanted them to have a place of honor in the kingdom. Every mother should want her child to be close to Jesus.

The Discussion

A discussion began. Jesus turned to the sons and asked them,“Can you drink of the cup that I shall drink of, and to be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?”They responded, “We can do that.”They had no idea that they could not withstand one drop of what was in Jesus’ cup. All the sins of the world were in that cup. He concluded this passage by saying, “Come to think of it, you are going to drink my cup. But as to awarding places of honor, that’s not my business. My Father is taking care of that.” They both would suffer before they got to the kingdom but their suffering would pale in comparison to Jesus’ suffering. James would be killed and John would be banished to a lonely island. God has the final say as to who will sit by Jesus.

The point is she wanted the best eternity for her children. She loved them beyond the grave. There is some mother here today or mother figure. This passage teaches us how a mother makes an investment in her child.

The question is; What is a good investment for a parent to make for their child; stocks and bonds, top schools of academia; Ivy League or the sophisticated “Black Bourgeoisie” HBCU’s? What about piano lessons, dance lessons, or art lessons that can assist in future career choices; or a 529 plan that helps college students pay off tuition debt or braces to invest in a beautiful smile. Most good parents want the best investment for their children. An investment is made with the idea of a positive future return. You don’t get the benefit of an investment now but you get it later. An investment does not benefit you right away but one day it pays off.

I have seen little babies with diamonds, $200.00 gym shoes, wearing Gucci, Prada and other name brand items but that’s not an investment; that’s an asinine expense. My point this morning is this: Every investment mentioned heretofore and some not mentioned will do a child good as long as they are alive but when they are dead none of those assets will matter; no amount of money, education, skill training or business smarts will matter when the child is dead. The only investment a parent can make that matters after death is salvation.

The question for mother’s today is do you love your child beyond the grave because if you do you would be willing to invest in your child’s salvation. What we need today are godly mothers that love their children beyond the grave; that will not just love their children to death but will love them to eternal life.

Here’s the walk away points.

  1. Mothers Don’t Hide Your Faith (Demonstration)(Don’t be ashamed to worship). Her Faith in Jesus Was Visible:Salome had a relationship with Jesus that was transparent. She worshipped Jesus.
  2. Have Eternal Expectations for Your Children (Expectations)– There was a time when mother’s had higher expectations for their children concerning their relationship with Christ. I came from a generation where church was not an option it was mandatory. I came from a generation where parents told their children who Jesus was in hopes that they would establish a relationship with them. Even when I went off to college, no matter how late I burned the midnight oil, I could not sleep on Sunday mornings comfortably because my mother expected for me to get up and tell the Lord “thank you” in the House of the Lord not by watching a television program or Facebook.
  3. Love Them Beyond the Grave (Motivation)– She may have been out of line but she was concerned about their eternity. Her love motivated her to want them to get to heaven. Eternal love is sacrificial love. She did not ask for her seat but for her children -– Mother loved them even though they might have urged her to make the request to come before Jesus and just ask; even though they were egotistical, self centered, arrogant. She loved them even when no one else could stand them. This momma demonstrates that she has some interest in her children’s eternal security. What a tragedy it would be for momma to get to heaven and not see her children! She has compassion. (I want to leave the text for a minute with a casual caveat.)  Compassion does not erase Correction.As a matter of fact they go hand in hand. There are some mothers that raise their daughters and love their sons. If you really love your child you must correct them when they are wrong. I come from the school where my mother said, “Wherever you show out I’m going to let you have it right there.”Proverbs 13:24says, “Spare the rod and spoil the child.”

Why does this matter? Because…

Your Life’s Demonstration Influences Your Childs Eternal Destination

Don’t miss calvary in this text. Jesus’s death was a demonstrationof love. For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son that we may have eternal life. We don’t deserve it. Its because of the grace of God. Calvary brought with it expectations.It brought us the hope of holding on in hard times. Calvary brought with it motivation.Jesus loved us beyond the grave. He rose on the third day morning with all power in His hands and because He got up one day we will get up too. Mother, one day we will sit in heavenly places. You don’t have to worry about whether your child sits on the right our left. Here it is! Make sure you get in and your children get in. If you get there before they do tell them don’t look for you on the right or left, that’s up to God.

 

In Him!

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Dr. Oscar T. Moses

 

W.A.R. Bible Study – 5 People You Need In Your Life

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

Mount Hermon Missionary Baptist Church of Chicago

 W.A.R. Bible Study

5 People You Need in Your Life – Lesson #2

“People That Comfort You!” 

The Refreshing Friend

2 Timothy 1:15-18

Opener

During a difficult season of ministry, I felt totally misunderstood by my peers. Alone. Life was happening in “real time.” I had to make some unpopular decision concerning my role in different ministerial organization that I had previously been apart of. Needless to say, there are times when other ministers can be the most judgmental and even “black ball” you in a “spiritual way.” As a consequence, many ministers or persons in leadership suffer in silence. However, God has a way of sending the right person, to say the right thing, at the right time. It’s like a breath of fresh air.

Tired of feeling the mire of ministry and being perceived and not understood, I felt the need to share my feelings and reasons why I made some of the previous ministry decisions with someone. I could not just talk to anyone, they had to be someone who God has led me to. One night I called Rev. Jimmy Burnside, a man whom I hold in high esteem. Rev. Burnside holds no punches. He speaks unpopular truths with love despite who agrees or disagrees. I consider him a father in ministry.

I was not sure how he would respond to my reasoning but I called anyway. He answered and listened thoroughly. For the first time, I shared my concerns, concerning my recent ministry adjustments with someone who I knew would be a confidant.

When I finished speaking he said these words: “Oscar, I know you to be a man of integrity. I know you to be a person that is serious about his walk with God that will do what’s right with the Spirit of Christ and love. I know if you have made a decision it has been based on prayer and seeking God’s will and I know you to be a person to do the right thing.” When he finished speaking, I felt a breath of fresh air. My countenance was lifted and I was encouraged to hold on to my faith because I knew things would eventually get better. Thank you Rev. Jimmy Burnside for being a friend that comforts.

Context

This is the last letter that Paul wrote to Timothy before his death by Nero in Rome. Paul admonished Timothy not to be ashamed of the Gospel even when others were ashamed of him for preaching the gospel. He chides Timothy not to be ashamed of him, a prisoner of the Lord in verse 8. Paul was alone and needed a friend to comfort him.

Paul reminded Timothy of those who abandoned him in Asia. He mentioned two men named Phygellus and Hermogenes. However, there was one “somebody” who comforted, refreshed him and encouraged him. His name was Onesiphorus. Onesiphorus’ name means, “bringing profit.” He is one of the “unsung heroes” in the bible. His name is mentioned one other time in chapter 4:19. What we know of him is that Paul asked the Lord to give mercy to his house because he did (4) things for me when the chips were down; he oft refreshed me, was not ashamed of my chain, he sought me out very diligently, and found me and he ministered unto me.Onesiphorus was a friend that comforted Paul.

Thought Questions

  • Why do we need people to refresh us?
  • Why do we need people that are not ashamed of us?
  • Why do we need people to seek us out when we are down trodden?
  • Why do we need people to comfort us?
  • How do the following scriptures apply? Proverbs 16:28, Proverbs 20:19, Proverbs 17:17, Proverbs 18:13 and Galatians 6:2
  • How does the Holy Spirit Comfort us according to John 14:26-27?

Group Discussion on Biblical Passages

 Read the following passages and discuss the importance of being comforted and the significance of being a person that comforts others.

  • 2 Corinthians 1:3-6
  • 1 Thessalonians 5:14

Group Discussion Questions

  1. Why do you think some people deserted Paul?
  2. What did Onesiphorus do for Paul?
  3. What did Paul want the Lord to do for Onesiphorus?
  4. How did Paul respond for his need to be comforted with Timothy?
  5. Who do you pray for daily?
  6. Why is it important to comfort those who have been outcast?
  7. How can you refresh someone going through a difficult time?
  8. Why should we not assume that everyone is doing well?
  9. How does it feel to need comfort and not receive it?
  10. When others cannot comfort you what should you do?
  11. How does God comfort the afflicted?

Because of Him!

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

5 People #2 Comfort

 

 

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MHMBCOC W.A.R. Bible Study – 5 People You Need In Your Life – Part 1

 

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

Mount Hermon Missionary Baptist Church of Chicago

 W.A.R. Bible Study 

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

5 People You Need in Your Life

“People That Challenge You!”

Lesson #1

 Opener

I have always been up for a good challenge. It just seems to be apart of my nature. But the challenges I have taken on in life fit into the “ordinary” challenge category. Playing high school football was an ordinary challenge. Becoming a member of a fraternity was an ordinary challenge. Completing 21 weeks in the Chicago Police Academy was an ordinary challenge. Completing my Masters Degree was an ordinary challenge. Becoming a pastor was an ordinary challenge. Completing my Doctors of Ministry Degree was an ordinary challenge and writing two books was an ordinary challenge. However, God has a way of sending people in your life to redefine the lens of how we view ordinary challenges and consider the “extraordinary” challenges in life.

I met Richard Wilford somewhere around the year 2006. We are the same age, exactly 16 days apart. He is a pastor, as I am. We immediately connected and would give each other encouragement on our sermonic thought process and matching what the old timers would call “mother wit” i.e., “common sense.”  We both were challenged leading a small congregation. However, around 2014 Richard’s son De’Angelo was diagnosed with an aggressive cancer and succumbed to the cancer in 2017. Richard, a single father, reset the narrative of his life and used his pain to grow. He is living in the “extraordinary.” Within the last four years he has authored four books, working on the fifth book, has recorded a gospel CD, jumped out of airplanes, ministers to countless people and at the age of 52 is training for the Iron Man Contest.

His discipline and vision intrigues me to do more than “ordinary” with the one life I have to live. Richard has rubbed off on me and I am resetting the narrative of my own life goals and ministry to expand and reach more people for Jesus Christ. Thank you Richard for rubbing off on me and being a friend that challenges me.

Who’s Rubbing Off On You?

Proverbs 27:17

The metaphor of steel rubbing against steel in the first line is applied in the second line to the abrasion or friction necessary for growth in one’s own relationships.

The first line is an old proverb: Iron sharpens iron. The image is of metal being used to sharpen a sword or a farming implement. The imagery of steel rubbing against steel in the first line is applied in the second line to a relationship between friends: As iron sharpens iron, so [literally] one friend sharpens another. When iron is rubbed against another piece of iron it shapes and sharpens it. Likewise people can help each other improve by their thinking, actions and relationships. The bottom line is people rub off the good and bad on you.

The text ends with, “So a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.” The Hebrew word for countenance is pāneh, which means to “turn the face” to brighten the face. One translation says to place favor upon. Here it is! The sharpening friend literally turns the company or conversation of his friend. He adds to his wit and his wisdom, character and influence. You maintain the cutting edge.

Thought#1– If You Are The Smartest One In Your Group – Its Time To Find Some New Friends. We need people to challenge us to do better.

Group Discussion on Biblical Principles

Read and discuss the following biblical passage and discuss how God challenge us to make us our best selves and sharper.

  • Matthew 5:13-16
  • Matthew 5:6
  • 2 Timothy 2:15
  • Ephesians 4:14-16
  • Luke 6:28

Group Discussion Questions

  1. Explain the effects that Proverbs 27:17 have on friendship.
  2. Give an example of how you and another person sharpen one another.
  3. What role does another person’s influence play on our success or failures?
  4. Give an example of how someone can negatively rub off on a person.
  5. Why is it necessary to have friends that challenge you beyond the ordinary?
  6. Why is constructive criticism good for one’s growth?
  7. Why is it necessary to have someone you are accountable to with your faith?
  8. Why do you think people are afraid to be challenged?
  9. How have your friends challenged you to become a better person?
  10. Name 3 reasons why Christians should respectfully challenge one another?
  11. How would you like this lesson to affect your life?

 

Because of Him!

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

 

5 People Image #1

 

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W.A.R. Bible Study – Living My Best Life -Part 5 – April 2, 2019 – 7PM

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

W.A.R. Bible Study

Mount Hermon Missionary Baptist Church of Chicago

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Living My Best Life Bible Study #5

It Wont Just Happen!

 

The Pick Up of Responsibility

It won’t just happen on accident or by giving God or life the bare minimum! You must take responsibility towards living your best life. Taking personal responsibilityto commit to spiritual growth is crucial; it means being discipline and consistent in Sunday worship, Christian Growth Academy, W.A.R. Bible Study, Corporate Prayer, and Let’s Stay Together Ministry. It’s all relative to walking into the life God has designed for you.

Those who take a casual or bare minimal approach to pray, study the scriptures, or devote time to maturing in the Christian life, are suggesting that they are satisfied with what they know, what they are doing, and where they are in their spiritual development. They take a “Yeah… yeah… yeah… that’s a waste of time. I don’t need any of that” attitude.

Living your best life will not happen if you do not assume the responsibility for change and your own personal development. This lesson is designed to teach the members of MHMBCOC that living your bestliferequires a spiritual discipline that increases personal responsibility. As nouns the difference between responsibility and discipline is that responsibility is the state of being responsible, accountable, or answerable while discipline is a controlled behavior; self-control.

Jesus told several parables in which responsibility and accountability are disciplines that make up the core of people who are living their best life. Think about it! People that you admire do extra and they are disciplined in whatever they do. The late Myles Munroe made the statement; “We pay to see people that are disciplined.” Whether it is your favorite athlete, performer or preacher; we appreciate (And God Appreciates) disciplined people that take the time to develop what God has given them and do “more” than average.

Consider this illustrative parable of the talents. Before a man went on a journey, he entrusted money to his servants. When he returned, each servant had to give an answer for what he had done with the money assigned to him. Those who were disciplined doubled their money, the master exclaimed, “Well done!” However, the one undisciplined man who hid the money in the ground was severely judged for his irresponsibility.

Group Challenge – Read Matt 25:14-30.

Answer the Following Question

The Biblical Lesson

  1. To what did Jesus liken the kingdom of God in this parable?
  2. What did the man in the parable give to his servants?
  3. What did the servant who received five talents do with his money?
  4. What kind of return on his investment did the servant with two talents get?
  5. What did the third servant do with the one talent his master gave him?
  6. How did the master react to the report of the first servant?
  7. What was the response to the report of the second servant?
  8. What excuse did the third servant give for not investing his talent?
  9. How did the master respond to the third servant’s explanation?
  10. What orders did the master give about the third servant’s one talent?
  11. What judgment was handed down to the “wicked, undisciplined, lazy” servant?

Life Application

  • With what talents or resources has God entrusted you? (Each person name it)
  • What gifts or talents has God given to Mount Hermon M.B. Church of Chicago?
  • What thoughts or attitudes cause us to be lazy in carrying out our Christian responsibilities?
  • Why do you think the third servant really buried his talent?
  • How does being disciplined pay off?
  • What does discipline have to do with faith?
  • How does this parable encourage a person to increase their personal responsibility towards spiritual growth?
  • How does this parable encourage the church to membership to become more involved?
  • What can others benefit most from gifts and abilities that some have buried?

Thought:The more we grow spiritually as good stewards; God increases our responsibilities.

How do the following scripture verses encourage us to do more and become disciplined?

Ecclesiastes 9:10

Proverbs 12:24

Proverbs 22:29

Matthew 25:21

Luke 16:10

Personal Probe

  1. What resource do you need to commit to Christ’s use at this time in your life?
  2. What area of your spiritual life needs more discipline?
  3. How can you invest your talents in serving God this week?
  4. What reminder can you use to hold yourself accountable for the way you manage your God-given resources?

 In Him!

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Dr. Oscar T. Moses

 

 

Rights reserved Dr. Oscar T. Moses – W.A.R. Bible Studies – Living My Best Life – 2019

MHMBCOC W.A.R. Bible Study – I’m Living My Best Life – Part 3

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

W.A.R. Bible Study

Mount Hermon Missionary Baptist Church of Chicago

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Living My Best Life Bible Study # 3

The Principle of Availability

Lord I Am Available to Serve

Over the last twenty years, I have observed a small core of members that are actually involved in the forward progress of the church. Most churches face the issue of members who are continuously unavailable and uninvolved. They are merely spectators. Many attend regularly but never move beyond that to become available to be involved in the ministry and mission of God.

Christianity Today Magazinesuggests that there are (3) three main reasons people do not avail themselves to serve and they perhaps are not what most people think. CT says the following are three reasons why people do not avail themselves to serve:

  1. They Feel Useless– These individuals feel as if they do not have anything significant to offer in ministry. Those who feel useless simply may not know that they have been called and gifted by God for ministry.Those who feel useless have to be patiently taught that God has gifted them for service within the body. Once they grasp this as fact, they can become some of the best ministers in the congregation.
  2. Some People Are Hurting– Some have been hurt by church members and church leaders. Some had a bad experience in a previous church. These people need to be shown the love of Jesus Christ by the membership and encouraged to serve.
  3. Some People Are Lazy – Some do not want to serve. The want to reap the benefits of others service. It causes those who are working to reconsider actually working. All God’s people are called to the ministry; all God’s people are sent on mission. The only questions are “Where?” and “Among whom?”

The problem in ministry has not changed. There is a lack of availability. There have been countless experiences of asking someone to help with a ministry or church project, and the response too often is, “I am not available.” 

Group Thought

The Greek word “serve” means to wait upon someone, to attend to someone. It is akin to the word for slave or servant. It is sometimes translated “minister to”. God Requires Every Member to Serve

  1. Do you agree with the 3 reasons Christianity Today gives? Are there other reasons?
  2. How do the following verses confirm every believer has a mandate to make themselves available for ministry?
  • 1 Peter 4:10
  • Hebrews 10:24
  • Romans 14:12
  • Colossians 3:23-24
  • 1 Corinthians 15:58
  • Revelation 14:13
                                                      Group Questions
  1. How should a Christian exhibit Availability to others in daily life?
  2. How can one develop a Christian attitude and willingness to be Available?
  3. What often blocks one from being Available to others?
  4. How does 1 Corinthians 12:12-26make every members availability essential to a healthy body?
  5. How do the following scriptures give positive examples of The Principal of Availability?
  • Genesis 12:1-9
  • Matthew 4:18-22
  1. How do the following scriptures give negative examples of The Principal of Availability?
  • Jonah 1:1-4
  • 2 Timothy 4:9-10

Final Example

One Sunday after an afternoon ministry affair, I watched the, now retired, First Deputy Superintendent of the Chicago Police Department, Al Wysinger, avail himself for service. He was the guest speaker at the church tea, and when the eating was over, he rolled up his sleeves and went into the kitchen to wash dishes and clean up. He didn’t have to do that. He was not a member of our church. I tried to stop him, and he said, “This is what I do!” Not even a member of our church, but he made himself available for service. If churches had more members like that, we would be of better service to the community. Servitude is not a step down but a step up. How does this example make you feel as a member of this church?

The Principal of Availability means:

  • I Am Accessible for Service:
  • I Am Ready to Sacrifice:
  • I Am Willing to Be Sent:

Final Question

What Does Matthew 9:35-38 instruct us to do as Christians?

 Final Thought

Availability is being willing to adjust our own schedule, agenda, and plans to fit the right desires of God and others. It makes personal priorities secondary to the needs of God and others. It is to reflect God’s priorities, so we are always available to Him, and others, when we are serving.

Living Me Best Life Pic 2

In Him!

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

 

 

 

 

 

Rights reserved Dr. Oscar T. Moses – W.A.R. Bible Studies – Living My Best Life – 2019

I’m Living My Best Life – Part 1 – It’s About That Life! W.A.R. Bible Study

Mount Hermon Missionary Baptist Church of Chicago

W.A.R. Bible Study

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

I’m Living My Best Life Bible Study

If you have been listening… you perhaps have heard young people echoing one of the latest urban catch phrases, “I’m Living My Best Life.” The phrase has been popularized by Hip Hop Legend Snoop Dog and actor and comedian Lil Duval in a musical single release titled, “Smile.” The phrase stuck with me and caused me to critically think and ask the question, “Am I really living my best life according to God or am I delusional and living beneath whom God has created me to be?”

This is a 3-Part bible study series designed to teach the members of MHMBCOC that Living Your Best Life is contingent upon an inextricable relationship with God.

Lesson I

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Its About That Life

Matthew 6:25-33

I must admit that I watch reality TV. I get some good preaching out of watching the way people live their lives. I like the TV sitcom, “The Game”. It’s about the lives of athletes and their love interest and how their lives revolve around the fear of never having enough money, not being popular and not being socially accepted. My favorite character is Tasha Mack. She is always chasing for the right dollar amount, the right man and the right fashions but she is always coming up short. Her signature line is “It’s about that life!”It reminded me that so many people think they are living but day-by-day they are dying. They have all the creature comforts of earth but they have no stock in eternity. Jesus gives us clear instructions in this lesson that teaches us how to Live Our Best Life!

Context

Matthew chapter 6 is apart of what is known as the Sermon on the Mount. It is the longest piece of teachings of Jesus Christ in the New Testament. Jesus sat down and began to teach His followers basic truths as it related to living the Victorious Christian Life. The Sermon on the Mount began in chapter 5 and in chapter 6 the context is about trusting God to meet your day-to-day needs.

Chapter 6 begins with a warning. Matthew 6:1 (KJV)– “Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven.” Charity to the poor was a basic component of Jewish life. The Greeks and Romans did not believe in charity the way God intended. The only time they would give to the poor was to be seen whereas they could secure their own popularity and status within society. That is why Jesus said in verse 2, “Don’t blow a trumpet and stand in the street to announce what you have given. If you do, you will have your reward here on earth and not in heaven.”

In verses 5-15Jesus talks about the significance of prayer and that the Christian should have a private prayer life. The problem of public prayer emerges when one seeks a response from people and not God. Within these verses Jesus gives an example of the “Model Prayer.”

In verses 16-18Jesus talks about fasting. The Christian should fast but the same principles apply to fasting as to prayer. The Christian should not broadcast that they are fasting and walk around looking as though they cannot make it through the day. While fasting present yourself groomed and alert whereas you will not bring attention to yourself.

Don’t seek possessions is the theme of verses 19-24: Earthly treasures don’t last. All that we often build our lives around have no lasting qualities. Therefore, Jesus gives us direct commands as it relates to our possessions and the things we desire to have in this life. Earthly treasures are fleeting and will eventually pass away. Secure treasures that cannot be destroyed by moths, rust or even a clever thief. Wherever your treasure is that’s where your heart is. If your treasure is materialistic that’s where your heart is and you stand the risk of a great heartbreak. Verse 22-23means that we should focus our affections on heaven and not allow our gaze to be distracted on earthly things. The lesson is that no one can focus on God and the world. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money (Vs 24). Our study will focus on verses 25-34.

Group Questions – Verses 25-34 

  1. What three worries did Jesus discourage among His followers? Why? (6:25)
  2. Why is food a trivial matter? (6:26)
  3. According to Jesus, how do clothes stack up as a subject of great concern? (6:26)
  4. What creatures did Jesus use to illustrate God’s reliability as a provider? Why? (6:26)
  5. Why are God’s creatures consistently “fed and clothed”? (6:26)
  6. Why should we take great comfort from the way the animal and plant kingdoms operate? (6:26)
  7. What benefits does worry bring? (6:27)
  8. What fact from nature did Jesus use to illustrate the folly of worrying over clothes? (6:28)
  9. How did Solomon’s wardrobe measure up to the beauty of nature? (6:29)
  10. What comfort can followers of Christ find in the beauty of nature? (6:30)
  11. Who is consumed by concern over food, water, and clothing? (6:32)
  12. What priorities should we have in life? (6:33)
  13. What does God do for His children when they keep the right perspective, refuse to worry, and trust Him? (6:33)
  14. Why is it silly to fret over the future? (6:34)

Keep It Real! 

  1. What does Living Your Best Lifeas a Christian look like?
  2. Is it a sin not to Live Your Best Life?
  3. Is Living Your Best Lifeand living a safe lifeconflicting?
  4. How does Living Your Best Life reflect your relationship with God
  5. How is Living Your Best Lifea response to God’s goodness?
  6. Why do so many Christians live beneath their Best Life?

In His Care!

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

 

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What “Should” The Lonely Do At Christmas – 2018

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

December 13, 2018

WHAT SHOULD THE LONELY DO AT CHRISTMAS?

Matthew 1:18-25

God is with us!

During this time of year you can find more lonely people than ever. Loneliness can stem from many things and can be triggered by overdrinking, overeating, overspending and from being in over demand. It has been clinically proven that loneliness does not just make one sick but it can be deadly. People without adequate social interaction can die prematurely. Loneliness impairs immune function and boost inflammation, which can lead to type 2 diabetes, arthritis and heart disease. Loneliness has doubled in recent years: 40 % of adults in 2 surveys said they were lonely. Up from 20% in 1980.  The Gallup Polls says that loneliness affects a third of the population and psychologist say that the figure is steadily on the rise. Loneliness can be one of those symptoms that if we leave unchecked can be deadly. The problem of loneliness arises because we don’t know how to treat it. When we feel hungry we eat. When we feel sleepy we lie down. If you break a bone you can treat that but how do you treat loneliness?

John Cacioppo, in talking about the Lethality of Loneliness,said that we don’t realize is that air pollution increases your chances of dying prematurely by 5%. Obesity increases your chances pf dying prematurely by 20%. Alcohol increases your chances of dying prematurely by 30% but living with loneliness increases your chances of dying by 45%.

It is not unusual for someone to be in a crowd and feel like the only person on earth. However, I have discovered that the true experts on loneliness are not the psychologist, census takers or the Gallup polls; they are the people that we meet each day that we sit next to in church, ride next to on busses, work with on our jobs and live in our homes.

There are a lot of lonely people in the world that feel as though they have no one. One of the loneliest times of the year is Christmas. However, for the Christian, this is the time of year that we reflect on the greatest gift given to the world; God is with us. Jesus Christ, the Son of God, became like us so we would not have to make this pilgrimage alone.

Matthew 1:23: “Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.”

The Christian has the assurance of God’s Presence in times when loneliness surfaces.

What should the lonely do at Christmas?

  1. Reflect Within: -Deep reflection within musters a conversation with one’s soul. Psalm 42:1-3 (KJV)As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God. My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before God? My tears have been my meat day and night, while they continually say unto me, Where is thy God? Reflection on God’s grace from your past can bring a sense of assurance of God’s never parting presence.
  2.  Look Up: When horizontal relationships fail you the vertical relationship will fulfill you. Psalm 121:1-2 (KJV)I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth. One’s prayer life becomes crucial during times of loneliness. Prayer is a privilege given to us by God that strengthens our relationship with Him and restores us on a daily basis. One hymnologist reminds us of the friend we have in Jesus and “what needless pains we bare” when we do not pray.
  3. Reach Out: Your interaction with other people becomes the catalyst to combat loneliness. Resist the urge to cocoon yourself and cut off human interaction. Helps someone that needs your help and that gesture of kindness will take the attention off of you. “Help somebody and you will help yourself.” Isaiah 58:10 (KJV) – And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the noonday: Reaching out may challenge you to come out of your comfort zone but the effort and results are worth the challenge. Be certain to surround yourself with positive people who can affirm the presence of Christ in all believers. Finally, never forget that God is With Us!

Wishing you and your family a blessed and Merry CHRISTmas,

Dr. Moses Pic 6 2016 Eyes Closed

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

W.A.R. Bible Study – “Bold Moves” – Part 2

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

MHMBCOC

Tuesday, December 11, 2018 

Bold Moves – Bible Study Part 2

“Necessary Endings

Genesis 19:1-26

This lesson is designed to teach us the value of exploring the possibilities of new beginnings!

Chapter 19 unfolds with the two angels arriving in Sodom. Lot, Abraham’s nephew, was sitting at the entrance of the city when they arrived. He welcomed them and beseeched them to come to his home to be his guest for the night.  When they were getting ready to go to sleep for the evening the men of Sodom young and old surrounded the home of Lot to violate them sexually by rape. Lot stepped out of his home shutting the door behind him and pleading with the men. He offered his two virgin daughters but the men became enraged. They went to grab Lot and the two angels reached out and grabbed Lot and pulled him in doors, bolted the door and temporarily blinded the men of Sodom. The angels told Lot, “If you have any relatives in this city get them out. We will destroy this city completely. The stench of Sodom has reached the nostrils of God and He has sent us to destroy it.” Lot rushed out to tell his daughters fiancés and they laughed at him.

The next morning the angel’s hurriedly told Lot, “Take your family and leave this city”. When Lot moved slowly the angels grabbed his hand and the hands of his wife and two daughters and rushed them outside the city. The Lord was showing them mercy. The angels told them, “Run for your lives and don’t look back!” As Lot reached the city the sun was rising and God rained down fire on Sodom and Gomorrah and destroyed everything from people, plants and animals alike. But Lot’s wife looked back as she was following behind him and became a pillar of salt.

Questions

  1. Who visited Lot? (19:1-2)
  2. How did the men in Sodom and Gomorrah treat Lot’s guests, and how did Lot respond? (19:4-8)
  3. What happened to the men surrounding Lot’s house? (19:9-11)
  4. When Lot and his family fled the city, what did his visitors tell them to do and not to do? (19:16-25)
  5. Why did Lot leave Sodom at the last minute? (19:12-22)
  6. What did Lot’s wife do, and what happened to her? (19:26)

Think About It

  1. Why is it so hard to let go of the past?
  2. In what ways do we become hardened to the evil around us?
  3. How does our society desensitize people to sinful behavior?
  4. How does Sodom and Gomorrah compare to our society?
  5. In what ways do people sometimes make their family suffer in order to uphold someone else’s expectations?
  6. Why is it sometimes hard to flee from sin?
  7. What makes this a bold move for Abraham and his family? Name 3 things.

Personal Probe

What ‘Bold Moves” do you need to take? Think of some areas in your life that needs a necessary endings.

Keeping It Current

Thought: “As Christians we are commanded to love everyone. We are not commanded to force our beliefs on anyone. Neither is it fair for any group of people to force their beliefs on the Church. The Church should warmly welcome all people and teach the truth with love.”

  1. How should the church respond to the LGBTQ community?
  2. Is the church compromising to sinful behavior like Sodom and Gomorrah? How?

 

In Him!

Dr. Oscar T. Moses

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