Patriarchs Online Bible Study | Week 9

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Our Patriarchs online Bible study continues with Week 9 from Beth Moore, A Fragile Band of Brothers.  We are in the homestretch of the study! Push to finish strong! After finishing these last nine weeks of Bible study you’ve developed habits of devotion, explored Bible topics, and discovered personal applications. Well done ladies, well done!

Recently I travelled to Dallas, Texas for work.  I had decided that I would carry on so I didn’t have to check my bag.  This would make travelling a little easier and timely, right?  Wrong.  When I got to the gate, I was kindly told that my bag was over the weight limit and would need to be checked. My bag being over the limit led to additional expenses and time that I was hoping to avoid.  Reminds me of our lesson this week.

Baggage…Emotional Baggage, Financial Baggage, Addiction Baggage, whatever baggage we carry from our past will always weigh us down and hinder our growth until we, as our author suggests, exchange it with God’s provision, and restoration.

While we see Joseph prosper and his character is grown thru his past pain, we still see that his old wounds are still there.  Perhaps, you, like me have really tried to mask the truth that things that happened in the past still at times sting hard.  When we live in denial of these feelings, we never fully escape our past hurts and heal.

I can only imagine the flood of emotions that Joseph must have felt seeing his brothers after the pain they caused.  But what really hit me this week, was that even though he had suffered so much, God provided him with new blessings and a way to bless and provide for his family in the end.   God had a plan and used the evil, the hurt for His glory and for blessings to come forth.

I pray that you will continue to seek God during times of sufferings and trust that He is working on your behalf, even when you do not see Him moving.

Meet us during this week for one of our small group discussions.  Continue to connect with your Prayer Partners and leaders this week to share.

BIBLE STUDY ASSIGNMENTS THIS WEEK:

One more week to go ladies!

 

Patriarchs Online Bible Study | Week 8

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Our womens online Bible study is meeting again this week as we continue the Beth Moore Patriarchs study. We’re in the final weeks of study as we learn about Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob through the Book of Genesis. We’ve journeyed through some sensitive issues and navigated the pages of Scripture as a community of women devoted to discovering God’s Word. Let’s finish these final weeks without distraction!

Our study this week is rightly called “Dreams and Disappointments” as we looked into the challenges Joseph encountered. Repeatedly we saw the Lord was with Joseph and we parallel that with our lives today. We are Christ followers but that does not mean that our lives are without difficulty. The Lord is with those who believe and follow Jesus but that does not mean that we are inoculated from troubles. Sometimes we feel invisible and forgotten, just as the cupbearer forgot Joseph. Disappointment is a temptation for resentment.

While she uses the example of sexual temptation, we battle numerous temptations during our lives as Christians. Beth Moore warns us, “If you and I are going to be victorious under tidal wave temptation, we are wise to rehearse in advance our reasons for standing firm.” The measuring stick in the face of difficulty is our obedience to the Lord.

  • Like me you’ve probably seen moms on Facebook hurting from the recent death of children or friends. Are you obedient to loving Jesus, even when it hurts?
  • Like me you’ve probably seen moms on Facebook caring for seriously ill children. Are you seeing Jesus in their suffering, or looking for an excuse to abandon the faith?

When we look at Joseph as our example of faith we see strength in suffering, hope in pain, perseverance when tempted. This is why we study the Bible- to understand God and learn how to live as Christians in our life battles.

An example is when we’re falsely accused- which is exactly what happened to Joseph from his master’s wife. She suffered with a spirit of lust and a spirit of rejection, so when the handsome and honorable man declined her sexual advances she punished him through her lies. As women we are falsely accused by other women under a spirit of jealousy or a spirit of competitiveness and that divides the church. Shouldn’t we rise up as one body and MAGNIFY God? Joseph certainly did this each time he was wrongly accused. He gave attention to God, not the accusers.

You are not forgotten when you are obedient to God. Keep your attention on the one who created you, knows your heart, and sees the love that you have for Him. Keep your attention on the Author of your faith- not the accuser who lies. At the appointed time the Lord will fill your cup. My prayer for you is that it will someday overflow with blessing after blessing.

We hope to see you in small groups again this week! Reach out to your prayer partners and your small group leaders if you need a little encouragement to complete these last two weeks.

BIBLE STUDY ASSIGNMENT FOR THE WEEK

  • Join our private Facebook group and participate in a small group discussion this week
  • Complete your workbook study of Week Nine
  • Optional: Video/audio Session Nine

“You and I are the cupbearers of Christ offering those around us a taste of God.” Beth Moore

Patriarchs Online Bible Study | Week 7

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Welcome back to the Women’s Bible Café online bible study! This week we continued our study of Beth Moore’s The Patriarchs by looking at Jacob’s return home in our lesson titled God of the House.

Our study begins in Genesis chapter 33 where we see Jacob preparing to meet Esau and make peace him.

Many years before Jacob had, with his mother’s help, stolen Esau’s blessing and birthright. Esau was the oldest son of Isaac and Rebekah and as such was due to inherit a double portion of the estate.

Esau was so distraught at his loss that he plotted to kill Jacob which forced Jacob to flee for his life.

Although Jacob received the heir’s portion of the estate, he had done so with deceit and trickery. When we gain things through dishonesty, they often do not rest well with us. This was a wound that needed  to be dealt with eventually.

In Genesis chapter 33, it had been twenty years since Jacob had left home. It was time for Jacob to return home and deal with his past mistakes, however, His time with Laban had changed him in many ways:

  • Jacob had learned to work hard. He worked for seven years for both of his wives.
  • Jacob had received with his own dose of deceit and setbacks at the hand of Laban.
  • Jacob was now a husband and father with a large family that he provided well for.
  • Jacob had encountered God, served Him and this fundamentally changed him.

Jacob returned to the land of Canaan in fear of Esau’s reaction to him and rushed to make amends.

However, because Jacob had been faithful to God, God was with him. Jacob met an Esau who was no longer angry and seeking revenge, but instead this Esau was weeping and welcoming!

One of this week’s greatest takeaways was what happened when Jacob’s family got rid of their idols, purified themselves and returned to God. God was with them!

When the people fully returned to God and committed themselves to Him, He was with them and gave them favor.

This is the basis of a spiritual revival today! When we lay aside our idols and recommit to serve God alone and obey His commands, His presence is with us and we are blessed.

I pray that we all commit wholeheartedly to God and he becomes the God of our house, or El Bethel.

BIBLE STUDY ASSIGNMENT FOR THE WEEK

  • Join our private Facebook group and participate in a small group discussion this week
  • Complete your workbook study of Week Eight
  • Optional: Video/audio Session Eight

In Christ- Carla Brooks

Patriarchs Online Bible Study | Week 5

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Welcome back to womens online Bible study as we continue digging into “Patriarchs” by Beth Moore. Week five of our study begins with the birth of Isaac and Rebekah’s twin sons, Jacob and Esau.  As their story unfolds in Genesis 25:19-28:9, we see a dynamic display of sibling rivalry that had the eldest brother, Essau, being tricked out of his birthright from his younger brother Jacob.  With any major conflict, it didn’t happen overnight.

In verse 27 we learned that Essau was a talented outdoorsman and Jacob was content to stay close to home.   While home, he had lots of opportunity to connect more with his mother while Isaac connected with his father Issac as Isaac loved eating the meats that Esau brought back from his hunting trips.  Gen 25:28 (NIV) reads Isaac, who had a taste for wild game, loved Esau, but Rebekah loved Jacob.

How did their relationship go from good to bad:

  • Their parents chose a son to favor: Whether by intention, close relationship, or shared interests, Rebekah and Isaac failed to foster unity among the brothers.
  • Jacob was able to influence Esau, to give up his birthright when he was physically too weakened by the lack of food to make a rational decision. (25:29-34)
  • Rebekah helped Jacob trick Isaac into believing he was Esau in order to receive Esau’s blessing as the eldest son (27:11-17)

As we ended this week’s study, a family is dealing with the consequences of deceit and deception, which led toward the devastating consequence of one son, Jacob, needing to leave home due to his brother’s threat of killing him. All four of them suffered from Jacob’s acts of deception.

What can we learn from their story? Despite our best human efforts, God’s plan for our lives is sovereign.  We can’t stop his blessings.

BIBLE STUDY ASSIGNMENT FOR THE WEEK

  • Join our private Facebook group and participate in a small group discussion this week
  • Complete your workbook study of Week Six
  • Optional: Video/audio Session Six

In Him- Lakecia Harris

Patriarchs Online Bible Study | Week 4

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This week we continued our study of Beth Moore’s The Patriarchs by turning our Eyes on Isaac and his marriage to Rebekah.

We begin in Genesis 24:1 and Abraham is an old man who has been blessed by the Lord in every way. Abraham now asks his trusted servant to go find a wife for his beloved son Isaac.

Abraham charges the senior servant to find Isaac a wife not from the people of Canaan but to return to his own country family and find one suitable. The servant who is never named, takes an oath and ten donkeys loaded with all kinds of good things and heads to Nahor.

I love that when he reached his destination, the servant goes to God in prayer first, asking for a sign of success. We can learn from this that its’s important that we go to God in prayer first to seek success in everything.

The servant asks God specifically for a maiden who would give him a drink when asked and then volunteer to water the thirsty camels as well who could drink up to 25 gallons of water each. Yikes!

This is a request that only God could fulfill. Rest assured, regardless of how challenging a request is, our God is able to do great things! Before the servant could finish praying, out walks Rebekah who gave him the water he requested and generously volunteered to water the camels as well.

The servant asks Rebekah whose daughter she is and when she tells him she is the granddaughter of Abraham’s brother Nahor he knows that he has been given success. He falls to his knees, praises God and gives Rebekah a nose ring and some bracelets.

He goes on to meet Rebekah’s family and tells them about Abrahams charge for him to find a wife for Isaac. He asks them if they will consent for her to return with him and they respond – “This is from the LORD; we can say nothing to you one way or another.” Genesis 24:50

Abraham had one more requirement, the woman chosen had to return by her own consent and when she is asked, Rebekah does consent.

The highlight of the study this week appears to be when Isaac and Rebekah first see each other.  It seems like a moment of instant mutual attraction between the two of them, love at first sight if you will.

Shortly thereafter, their marriage is sealed in the presence of Sarah who dies shortly thereafter.

Our study this week ends with Abraham marrying Keturah and fathering several more sons who are gifted and move east of Isaac. Abraham then dies at the ripe age of 175 after following God for 100 yrs.

This week we see that God blesses our obedience to him. We are reminded that God hears and answers our prayers often right away although we may not see it (86). Finally, we see a marriage based on prayer, parental blessings, love, mutual consent and reliance on God (95).

BIBLE STUDY ASSIGNMENT FOR THE WEEK

  • Join our private Facebook group and participate in a small group discussion this week
  • Complete your workbook study of Week Five
  • Optional: Video/audio Session Five

In Christ- Carla Brooks

 

 

 

 

Patriarchs Online Bible Study | Week 3

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TRIUMPHS AND TESTS

When we talk about “heroes and heroines of the faith,” sometimes honor their strengths and minimize or even overlook their weaknesses.  In week 3 of Beth Moore’s study, The Patriarchs, though, we clearly saw Abraham and Sarah’s failings and learned more about God’s faithfulness regardless of how His people fell short.

Once again, Abraham feared what would happen when a foreign king saw his beautiful wife. Just as he did back in Genesis 12, Abraham told a king that Sarah was his sister.  But God took care of Sarah even when Abraham did not, and He protected her from potential harm at the hands of Abimelech.  Abraham and Sarah defaulted into some old patterns here, falling back on their same-old sins.  Maybe we do the same!  What if we responded differently, walking so closely with God that even our “default response was sanctified?” (p. 63).

After a decades-long wait, Scripture tells us that “God visited Sarah as he had said, and the Lord did unto Sarah as he had spoken” (Genesis 21: KJV).  Sarah gave birth to the promised son and heir, Isaac, and they rejoiced.

Unfortunately, old decisions still bore consequences.  Because Sarah and Abraham had taken things into their own hands in the past, Hagar and Ishmael were still on the scene and things were far from peaceful.  Sarah finally demanded that Hagar and Ishmael leave.  After reassurances from God that He would take care of them, Abraham relented and Hagar headed out into the wilderness for a second time.

That’s where Hagar encountered God once again.  As Hagar left her son to die, God heard Ishmael’s cries and revealed a well, rescuing them from present disaster and giving hope for their future.  Beth Moore writes, “God’s sovereignty weaves in and out of sight like stitches in a hem.”  Nowhere in Scripture does it suggest that God approved of how Sarah mistreated Hagar.  But God allowed Sarah’s plans because they “would put them on the road to His greater plan.”  Even when we face situations that are unjust and difficult, we can trust God to fulfill His ultimate plan for our benefit and His glory.  We can rest in the assurance of His sovereignty.

A few years after Isaac’s birth, Abraham once again met with King Abimelech, this time to swear an oath with him.  Their limited, human, finite vow is just a shadow of God’s willingness to covenant with us.  God is the perfect promise-maker and promise-keeper.  He always does what He says He will do, and He offers us his “hesed,” his covenant kindness and loyal love.

After her long journey with her husband, Sarah passed away and Abraham mourned his bride.  He purchased a burial plot for her, which, amazingly, makes this the only land that Abraham personally owned.  His descendants, though, continued looking for God to fulfill His promises and lead His people to a land of promise.

 

BIBLE STUDY ASSIGNMENT FOR THE WEEK

  • Join our private Facebook group and participate in a small group discussion this week
  • Complete your workbook study of Week Four
  • Optional: Video/audio Session Four

In Christ,

 

 

 

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