Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Life Shape Prayer & Discipleship Module 2 – New Creation Realities Block 9 – Pro-Vision


Wherever God points, He always provides.

In the Old Testament God made Himself known to mankind in various ways. As God revealed Himself, people began to know Him and soon learned God’s nature and grew to depend on certain attributes of His character. Often either God or the person with whom God was interacting added a second name to the name of God to describe Him.

For example, when the Angel of the LORD appeared to Gideon, Gideon was afraid he would die. The Lord said to Gideon, “Peace be to you … you shall not die.” As a result of that encounter Gideon built an altar to God and named the altar, Jehovah-Shalom, which means, The Lord is our Peace.

There are several occurrences like this in the Bible. Some of the more recognized names of God which reveal certain facets of His nature include:
·        Jehovah-Rapha          The Lord our Healer             Exodus 15:26
·        Jehovah-Nissi             The Lord our Banner/Victory Exodus 17:15
·        Jehovah-Tsidqenuw    The Lord our Righteousness  Jeremiah 23:6
·        Jehovan-Raah            The Lord is my Shepherd      Psalms 23:1
·        Jehovah-Shalom         The Lord is our Peace           Judges 6:24

Perhaps one of the most used compound names of God comes from Genesis 22. In this account God spoke to Abraham to walk northwards to a place God would show him and there sacrifice his son Isaac. Abraham obeyed and after three days arrived at the foot of Mount Moriah, where now sits Jerusalem and the Temple Mount. The place is important …

Abraham took the wood off of the donkey and put it on Isaac’s shoulders and they began to ascend Mount Moriah together. Isaac asked his father, “where is the sacrificial lamb?” Abraham replied, “God will supply.” Satisfied with the answer they both continued up the hill where Abraham prepared the altar and laid the wood in place.

Next Abraham began to bind Isaac for the sacrifice. It is important to note a few key things:
·        This is the same mount upon which Jesus would later be crucified
·        Jesus also carried the wood of His cross on this same hill
·        Also, Isaac was about 33 to 35 years old at this time, the approximate age of Jesus at the time of His crucifixion
·        Both of these sons trusted their fathers and were obedient to them

Just as Abraham lifted the knife to sacrifice Isaac the Lord spoke out of heaven and stopped him and blessed him for his willingness to obey. There below, just a little ways down the hill, a ram was caught by his horns in a thicket. Abraham retrieved the ram and made the sacrifice. Afterwards Abraham called the name of that place, “Jehovah-Jireh”, which means “The Lord will provide”. (Genesis 22:14) – Remember, the place is important …

The literal translation of Jehovah Jireh is: “In the mount of the Lord it shall be seen.” What shall be seen? Provision … When we are where God wants us to be we shall see what He has provided for us. If Abraham would have stopped one day short, there would have been no provision in that place.

Provision is waiting on us to get where God is taking us. Provision is “Pro-Vision” = for the vision. Provision from God is given to accomplish the vision of God. Provision from God is always waiting in a place with purpose.

God supplies what we need to accomplish His will. It may not always be what we want or what we imagine we should have had but it will always be enough to do what He wants done. Our challenge is to accept each blessing from heaven, thank Him for it and then be good stewards over whatever we are given. The Lord will supply all of our needs … (Php 4:19)

It’s like the manna which came from heaven to feed the Children of Israel everyday for over 40 years as they journey in the Arabian wilderness. It was not always what their flesh desired but it was what God knew was best for them under the circumstances they faced. The Bible says that their feet never swelled and neither was there a sick or feeble one among them (Nehemiah 9:21 & Psalms 105:37) … it was God’s provision from heaven! Where God points, He provides. And …

No one is richer than a child of God. Don’t envy others or be covetous.

1 Timothy 6:8  And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content.

1 Timothy 6:6 “Now godliness with contentment is great gain.”

Key Scripture: Luke 12:15  Jesus said to them, "Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses."

Our life is so much more than our bank account or our house can measure.

When it comes to provision, it is good to remember that God has a work ethic. One of the first things God teaches us about Himself is that His will and His world demands work. God worked six days and rested on the seventh. He took one day off; He did not take the rest of eternity off. God requires we work and provision is most often the results of His blessings on our labor. However, if we will not work it can be difficult for God to bless us. 
2 Thessalonians 3:10 says, If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat.

1 Timothy 5:8  If anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.

Even God’s provision almost always comes from heaven through someone’s labor. God will bless the work of your hands to provide increase. He supplies both bread to eat and seed to sow. There is a purpose for both …

What we do with what we have reveals who we are and what we believe.

Important Points:
1.   A sound biblical definition of provision is the resources God gives us to accomplish the work to which He has called us.
2.   God works with us and through us to provide for us and others.
3.   Be thankful and content with a modest life.

4.   No one is richer than a child of God.