Reclaiming Eden, Part I: Eve’s Triumph

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The serpent was clever, more clever than any wild animal GOD had made.

He spoke to the Woman: “Do I understand that God told you not to eat from any tree in the garden?”

The Woman smiled and said to the serpent, “Not at all. Actually, God did not tell me anything.”

The serpent was puzzled. “Wait, you mean you think you can eat from any tree in the garden?”

“Yes, that’s right,” she said, humming to herself as she sniffed a flower.

“This is too easy,” murmured the serpent. “Well then, have your tried the fruit from this tree here in the center? It is the best in the garden. In fact, it will make you smarter than your husband, as smart as God! You really need to experience it for yourself.”

The Woman saw that the tree was beautiful, that its fruit was good to eat, and that it would make her wise.

She half-reached an arm towards it…
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Joshua 3: Holy Shittim!

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Questions:

  • Why should the Israelites stay a kilometer behind the ark?
  • How does God exalt Joshua? To what end?
  • Where should priests keep the presence of God?
  • What is the connection between “relationship” and “results”?
  • What’s the secret to leading a large group on inconceivable adventures?

Read more to pursue answers in [Joshua 3]

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LEAD! C.11 Discerning Direction

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In Which We Hear to Obey, and Obey to Hear

Few questions are more fraught with promise and peril for the believer than “What is God’s will for my life?” While we know the textbook answers, we still long for more specific, personal guidance — and rightly so. Properly hearing God’s voice can open the door to dramatic transformation of people, relationships, and society; alas, mishearing God’s voice can result in darkest tragedy.

There is no simple answer, but there is a sure promise: if we entrust our ways to the Lord by faithfully pursuing the disciplines in submission to the Spirit, the Word, and the Body, He will ultimately lead us in a way that glorifies His name…

Memory Verse: “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.”Proverbs 3:5-6 (NKJV)

Assigned Reading
  1. Richard Foster: Celebration of Discipline

    • 12. Guidance
  2. Donald Whitney: Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life

    • 12. Learning
  3. Eugene Peterson: A Long Obedience in the Same Direction

    • 3. Providence: “God Guards You from Every Evil”
    • 14. Obedience: “How He Promised God”
  4. Ruth Haley Barton: Sacred Rhythms

    • 7. Discernment: Recognizing and Responding to the Presence of God

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LEAD! A.10 Soul’s Sanctification

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In Which We Are Set Apart For Obedience to Jesus, And Suffer For It — Becoming Holy in The Process

This week we round out our discussion on salvation and conviction by focusing on sanctification, or holiness, words that include being both “set apart” and “made righteous.” The overall idea is forming God’s character in us the way we were originally created to be, before mankind was corrupted.

The process of sanctification is central to our calling as disciples and leaders, yet often poorly understood. Let us dig into God’s word to try to find out what all it involves…

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