We’ve finished our second week of Believing God by Beth Moore and learned “God is who He says He is.” This is a critical part of our theology, because if we don’t believe in His character and existence then doubt will creep into our hearts. A good visualization of this is seen in the movie God’s Not Dead, where an atheist professor challenges a student to prove God’s existence, and frames the question around the parameters of the scientific community. How do we believe something we cannot see?
We are blessed with free will from God and this allows us to choose what we want to see and believe. Second Corinthians 5:7 says we walk by faith and not by sight. Apologetics is defending the Christian faith. Read any apologetic book and you’ll discover that in reality the scientific community makes decisions on faith too. They cannot see gravity, yet they have the faith to know it exists. We can see the Bible, which currently has 5,500 verified manuscripts including the Dead Sea Scrolls. Our faith is rooted in eyewitness accounts recorded in Scripture. Many secular documents from the same time period validate key events recorded in Scripture. If you’re interested in learning more about apologetics, read “Reasons For Our Hope” by House and Jowers, or “Mere Apologetics” by Alister McGrath. There is also a free resource online called Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry.
Beth Moore asks “What are you risking if you decide to surrender to a life of present-active-participle believing God and what are you risking if you don’t (page 43)? I really like this question and hope you spent some time contemplating your answers. 10 years ago I wrote this answer: releasing guilt and self-hatred when I surrender; risking depression and repeating past sins if I don’t. Wow…I’m amazed I even felt that in my heart! This was a stone-breaker moment for me in my journey and I pray it breaks the hardness of your heart too! Today my answer reflects my spiritual maturity and I wrote on page 43: I’m risking social acceptance by believing God, and soul freedom if I don’t. Stop for a moment and raise your two arms in praise if you agree \o/ HALLELUJAH!
I’d love to know how you completed the exercise at the bottom of page 43, yet I realize that it would be impossible to read all of your answers. Why don’t you do this instead: find one friend you trust in person on online and share your answers to this question. Open a conversation and express your heart. Our ministry leaders are all AMAZING listeners so if you want to share your answers with your small group leaders they will listen and encourage you to break the stones of fear and reluctance. There is no shame and condemnation, only love.
Assignment For the Week
- Calendar your study time and small group time. Use a reminder alarm on your cell phone.
- Pray before you begin reading. Ask the Holy Spirit to open your heart to wisdom.
- Select a small group day and time that fits your schedule. Arrive to the private Facebook group for the one hour meeting.
- Begin reading Week Three: Believing God Can Do What He Says He Can Do in your workbook
- Read Romans 4 at least two times this week, in a translation of your choice.
- If you are listening to the audio cd’s or watching the videos, watch Session Three, available through Lifeway (not required for participation in the study)
Discussion Questions- Answer in your small group or post a comment below
- On page 32 Beth Moore lists both formal and informal teachers of theology. Which has impacted your spiritual life the most: conversations, television, nature, parents, schoolteachers, preachers?
- Second Corinthians 5:7 KJV says “We walk by faith not by sight.” Reverse this and complete the sentence: I walk by sight when I____________. Give examples of how we might choose “sight” over “faith.”
- What did you learn about yourself after completing the “Test of Faith” on page 35: Would you describe your journey as active/adventurous (mostly a’s and b’s), moderate (mostly b’s and c’s), or uncertainty/fear (mostly c’s and d’s)? What factors do you feel may have you there? (page 36)
- How did you do your second week of study: stuck on the Hebrew words, enlightened by the “Test of Faith, or not much meat this week? What are some things that touched your heart this week?
- In our study this week Beth Moore gives an example from an apologist, someone who argues and defends the Christian faith. How do you feel about being in a situation where you need to defend your faith? The question is important because we need to first defend it to OURSELVES: Do you believe God is who He says He is? Is there anyone that needs prayer in this area of her spiritual life?