Mature Class Study, teacher Rick Coleman.
There are rich rewards in serving God. The enemy tries to put blinders on us so God’s way looks too hard.
Psalm 22:1-4 My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring? O my God, I cry in the daytime, but thou hearest not; and in the night season, and am not silent. But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel. Our fathers trusted in thee: they trusted, and thou didst deliver them.
The enemy says no one loves us and gives a bleak picture but he’s the Father of lies. God is on our side and he will help us.
Psalm 118:5-14 I called upon the Lord in distress: the Lord answered me, and set me in a large place. The Lord is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me? The Lord taketh my part with them that help me: therefore shall I see my desire upon them that hate me. It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man. It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in princes. All nations compassed me about: but in the name of the Lord will I destroy them. They compassed me about; yea, they compassed me about: but in the name of the Lord I will destroy them. They compassed me about like bees; they are quenched as the fire of thorns: for in the name of the Lord I will destroy them. Thou hast thrust sore at me that I might fall: but the Lord helped me. The Lord is my strength and song, and is become my salvation.
When blinders are on, we’ll only see the mountains as blocking our way and being too high to climb. David felt like God wasn’t there. We’ve all experienced that feeling but know that God will help us. There’s a great band of angels to encourage us. God will never leave us or forsake us. He will help us! Brother Rick was encouraged by remembering the song, A Mountain Climber (author unknown). Some of the lyrics are:
“What’s that up ahead? It looks like another mountain I must climb. Just one more of many mountains.
And just like all the others, It won’t trouble my mind.
As I stand here gazing up at the mountain, I know it will soon be left behind.
I’m a mountain climber, but I never climb alone.
There is one who is always with me, the way he has always shown.
Together we will take that mountain, though it seems to reach the sky.
This mountain will be conquered by the mountain climber and I.”
We have a reward that we are reigning as kings and priests with God on his throne. We can overcome like Christ did!
Revelation 3:21 To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.
How can we have the glorious experience to sit with the Lord on this throne? We can because greater is he that is in us so we are able to overcome. We overcome evil with good when God comes into our hearts!
Romans 12:21 Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.
Christ gave us a royal priesthood through his death. We walk in newness of life. We’re dead to sin so it has no power over us.
Romans 6:3-10 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is dead is freed[a] from sin. Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him: Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him. For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God.
God gives us discipline and endurance in our lives. We have endurance like the turtle that raced the hare. We aren’t sprinting like the hare who lost the race. We have to be steady and endure so we can win this race. There’s a remnant who will stay in the narrow way and follow Jesus to win the race at the end. Many start but few are willing to endure hardness, to be misunderstood, and to suffer persecution like a good soldier. We have to swim against the stream of the world. It’s not easy being different from the crowd. Christ chose us to be soldiers, to not be entangled with the world’s affairs.
II Timothy 2:1-4 Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also. Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.
When God changes us, we go from the kingdom of darkness to the the kingdom of light. We need to maintain our experience of good works in our life and to be faithful to God.
Titus 3:1-8 Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work, To speak evil of no man, to be no brawlers, but gentle, shewing all meekness unto all men. For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another. But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men.
Jesus gave himself for us and made reservations for us in heaven when we’re saved. He wrote our name in heaven.
John 14:23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.
The first step is to having the benefits of serving God is to repent and be saved.
I Peter 1:3-5 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus…according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
We have to stay faithful and not let any man take our crown. It’s up to us to not walk away from salvation but to hold fast!
Revelation 3:11 Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown.