Sheep Silver Prodigal by Crossing Barriers Ministry

The scribes, Pharisees, and religious lawyers thought they were holy and reacted against Jesus’ teaching, miracles, and association with sinners. They complained this man welcomes sinners and eats with them. So, Jesus told them these three stories. Today’s message come from Luke 15 Continue reading

Jesus Baptism & Temptation by Crossing Barriers Ministry

After Jesus was born, He was taken to the temple to be presented to the Lord. Two Holy people there recognized Him as the Promised One. Jesus grew in wisdom, stature, and favor with God and man. When Jesus was about 30 years old, John the Baptist began to preach in the wilderness. Today’s message come from Matthew 3:1-4:1-11.

We start today’s story off with John the Baptist preaching in the wilderness of Judea. His message was basically a prelude to Jesus starting his ministry. He is telling the people to repent for the kingdom of heaven has come near. He further goes on to say that spoken through the prophet Isaiah that they are to prepare for the coming of Jesus or the Promise One. (Matthew 3:1-3)

John the Baptist wore clothes made of camel hair and he had a leather belt around his waist while his menu consisted of locusts and wild honey. People travelled from all over the region of Jordan to confess their sins and to be baptized by John in the Jordan River. (Matthew 3:4-6)

People came day by day, when John would see the Pharisees and the Sadducees coming to where he was baptizing. He basically challenged them by they were dangerous, treacherous persons. They would have to repent for their sins and if not, they would be thrown in the depths of fire of Hell. He finally stated that I baptize you with water for repentance, but the ultimate authority will baptize you with the Holy Spirit for who’s sandals I am not worthy to carry. (Matthew 3:7-12)

Jesus travelled to Jordan where John was preaching. Jesus wanted to be baptized by John, but John attempted to deter him by saying that Jesus should baptize John the Baptist. Jesus says let it be so now because it is the proper thing to do. As soon as Jesus was baptized, he arose up out of the water and the heavens opened and he saw the spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. A voice from heaven says this is my son whom I love, with him I am well pleased. (Matthew 3:13-17)

After being baptized, Jesus was led into the wilderness by the Spirit. This was so that Jesus may be tempted by the devil. Jesus was there and fasted forty days and forty nights before he was tempted. (Matthew 4:1-2)

Jesus was tempted three times. The first one was to command these stones to turn to bread because you are hungry after fasting if you are truly the Son of God. Jesus responded using the word that Man should not live by bread alone but by every word that comes from the mouth of God. (Matthew 4:3-4)

The second temptation was after the devil took him into the Holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple. If you are truly the Son of God, then throw yourself down and allow the angels to have charge over you that they may bear you up as it is written. Again, Jesus using the word stated you shall not tempt the Lord your God. (Matthew 4:5-7)

Finally, the devil took Jesus up on a high mountain. He showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. The devil says to Jesus that if you drop to your knees and worship me I will give all these to you. Using the word for the third time, Jesus told the devil to go away and that it was written that you shall worship the Lord your God and Him only you shall serve. The devil then left and instantly angels came and ministered to Jesus. (Matthew 4:8-11)

Review Questions

1. What was John’s message? How did he challenge the pharisees or Sadducees?

2. Why did John insist that John baptize him? What happened immediately after?

3. Who led Jesus into the wilderness?

4. How long was Jesus in the wilderness before He was tempted?

5. Who tempted Jesus? What were the three temptations and Jesus responses?

6. What did Jesus use to respond each of the temptation?

7. After the devil left, what happened?

Questions to be answered:

1. What did we learn about God in this story?

2. What do we learn about man/ourselves in this story?

3. What did you learn new in this story?

4. What should I do differently because of this story?

Precious Baby Jesus by Crossing Barriers Ministry

We learned in our mid-week bible study from the Book of Luke the story of baby Jesus. I think we all have heard various versions, but all end up with the basic concept Baby Jesus was born in a manger. I read not that long ago that scholars say that Jesus wasn’t born on Christmas day because they state the shepherds were tending their flock and they wouldn’t be doing that in the middle of winter. Whatever the real day is, we celebrate “The Reason for the Season” on Christmas Day. So, let us look at why we celebrate the birth of baby Jesus.

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Awesome God by Crossing Barriers Ministry

Would you not agree that God is an Awesome God? Just take a moment and think about all the things he has done in this book of life we call a bible. We are concentrating our message on the book of Isaiah 6:1-11.

We start this message off with King Uzziah’s death. Verse one Isaiah spoke that he saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lifted. He speaks three more times expressing the deepest feelings of God’s children that are dedicated to him.

Word of Modesty

Modest can be defined as “the quality or state of being unassuming or moderate in the estimation of one’s abilities”, or/ and “behavior, manner, or appearance intended to avoid impropriety or indecency”. Either one of these definition fits Jesus while he lived here on earth but also a way we should be here on earth.

1 Timothy 2:9

In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with braided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array;

Verse 5 states “Woe is me for I am undone” Verse 7 further states “Your iniquity is taken away and your sin is purged”.

This is a lesson to us that we have only one place to seek forgiveness, We are not to feel hopeless but humble and unworthy. We must be aware that the Lord Jesus is our High priest and our advocate then, now and in the future no matter what building you are in.

1 John 2:1–2

My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.

Hebrews 7:24–26

But this man, because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood. Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them. For such a high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens;

Word of Bravery

What is the bravest thing you have ever done? We could say our first responders or military personnel would fit a fine example of Bravery. Bravery can be defined as “Courageous behavior or character”.

So, think of a couple examples from the bible of bravery. David & Goliath comes to mind, or Daniel in the lion’s den. How about Jesus?

2 Timothy 1:7

For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

Verse 8 goes on to say, “Here I am send me”. Our Lord was disappointed that no one was able to share his word with a blind people and people who renounces religion altogether. In the biblical case though, Isaiah does volunteers and the Lord was happy someone was there for this task.

It is kind of like this today, it seems we don’t have people to share God’s word and love when the time is there, but we are not. I am sure that at times we have all felt overwhelmed in a world of sin and unbelievers. When you look at that way, your mentality becomes “What can I do?” or “What difference will it make?’

Let me tell you a story that happened not that long ago. A friend of mine was out doing mud out recovery with Missouri Disaster Relief after a Major tornado had recently hit the area. A young boy was watching from a park as they were working. My friend who happens to be a chaplain walked over and spent some time with the young boy and before departing, he had given his life to Jesus. She didn’t stop there as she proceeded to spend time with the parents and because of her answering God’s request, God has three new family members.

So, what do you say when God says to you, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature”? So, the main question here is are you ready, prepared, trained, or just a blunder of words? What would you say if I told you that just showing God’s love is a start?

It might be noted here that Isaiah offered to go and preach to the blind and naysayers. He did not say “Send us” but rather “I will go”. God wants all of us spreading the gospel but individually not a group.

When we are out doing Disaster Relief work, a homeowner has a minimum of a dozen different individuals that have a chance to share the gospel.

Word of dedication

How dedicated are you to God and preaching his word? What are you committed to as they defined dedication?

Colossians 3:17

And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.

We wrap up with verse 11, “Lord, how long?” It appears that back then as well as today, we need to keep hearing the word, but we tend to have selective hearing these days. We must continue to be a soldier of God’s word.

I am sure that sometimes we are asking the same question as Isaiah which was, “How patient and persistent must I be?”. The response is we must continue till the end.

1 Timothy 4:13

Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine.

The Promise of the Messiah By Crossing Barriers Ministry

During the time of the exile and the return to the Promised Land God sent the Prophet Isaiah to tell of the coming of the Messiah. Keep in mind this scripture was written in approximately 680 BC. Today’s bible study comes from the book of Isaiah 6:1-8 & Isaiah 53.

The time was after King Uzziah had died. The main characters are Isaiah, the Lord, and angels. Isaiah saw the Lord, high and exalted, seated on a throne; and the train of his robe filled the temple. Above him were seraphim, each with six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they were flying.            (Isaiah 6:1-2)

And they were calling to one another: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.” At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook, and the temple was filled with smoke. (Isaiah 6:3-4)

“Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty.” Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar. With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.” Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!” (Isaiah 6:5-8)

Now to finish this week’s bible lesson off we wind up with Isaiah 53.

This chapter continues describing the “suffering servant.” He grows up in front of God like a plant. People ignore him because he doesn’t look particularly majestic. They all reject him and despise him, and he spends his whole life suffering.

But he pays off everyone’s sins with all this horrible suffering. No one realizes it, but it works. The people return to God like sheep to their shepherd.

Meanwhile, the servant goes like a sheep to the slaughter, bearing the people’s punishment silently. He is taken away by a “perversion of justice,” and is buried with the wicked and then with the rich.

God organized all of this to pay off the people’s transgressions. So, in the end the servant will be alright. He’ll see light through his troubles and find a place with the righteous and mighty as a reward for his atonement.

Review Questions

1. Describe what Isaiah saw in his vision?

2. What did he hear and witness?

3. What was Isaiah response and the interaction that followed?

4. In Isaiah 53, pull out the specific messianic (relating to Christ) correlation from these passages?

5. What is God trying to tell us through this story?

Questions to be answered:

1. What did we learn about God in this story?

2. What do we learn about man/ourselves in this story?

3. What did you learn new in this story?

4. What should I do differently because of this story?