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Bible Study

Prayer and giving to the poor! Bible Study Acts 10 Part 1

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Bible study on Acts 10

Part 1 Read Acts 10 – Verses 1-8

The first thing to say is that God speaks in visions, dreams and even through angels! Scripture shows us that He can speak so clearly like this. God is the same yesterday today and forever and so we can and must expect God to keep speaking like this in these days!

Cornelius was a upright respected man. He was a God fearing man and a man that prayed to God continually. He gave to the poor and was well spoken off!

So when ever I read of angelic visitations like this I ask myself what was the reason for it. How is that Cornelius was so blessed to Recieve this. I’m not saying there is a formula to see angels I’m just interested in the context at which they visited.

Cornelius is for us a good role model in how we must be pressing in to God and walking righteously in our lives.

“Noun 1.alms-giving – making voluntary contributions to aid the poor”

a devout man who feared God with all his household, gave alms generously to the people, and prayed continually to God……..And they said, “Cornelius, a centurion, an upright and God-fearing man, who is well spoken of by the whole Jewish nation, was directed by a holy angel to send for you to come to his house and to hear what you have to say.” (Acts 10:2, 22 ESV)

So Cornelius encounters and Angel of The Lord. It’s so overwhelming he thinks is The Lord himself. It must have been terrifically terrifying as he tells us. Simply amazing.

1) The very first thing The angel does is affirms him and his dedication and commitment to prayer and giving to the poor. This indicates to me that we must be doing this first and foremost part of our culture and way of living before The Lord. God was pleased with these prayers and offerings and they had ascended to heaven as a memorial before God. This shows us that God hears our prayers and sees our generosity to the poor. The awesome thing here is that its memorial before the Lord he doesn’t forget It. Verse 4. So it’s clear that prayer and giving is a key to part of Gods supernatural workings.

2) The angel tells him to send for Peter and gives him explicit detail as to where he is. So God is precise when he speaks. It was the names and the location which would have been more then enough to find them! He really is exact and precise.

3) The important part now is that Cornelius obeys and actions this immediately. He doesn’t hang around. How often does God speak to us and we procrastinate and not action and do what he has told us?

So in this small Chunk of Scripture there is so much we can take from it.

How can we be upright men and women of God in this day and age much like Cornelius?

Who is with me in committing daily to prayer and providing for the poor?

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A bible study on Acts 6:1-7 Apostolic Practical Ministry

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Please read the Scripture.

There was obviously a community issue here.

Now in these days when the disciples were increasing in number, a complaint by the Hellenists arose against the Hebrews because their widows were being neglected in the daily distribution. (Acts 6:1 ESV)

Widows where being forgotten and the disciples knew they needed to help. It was the custom at the time to help serve and distribute food to people in need of which widows where one of those. Scripture also talks about orphans and the need to help them practically. James 1:27.

So the apostles who where called by God to preach the Gospel and Word said this.

And the twelve summoned the full number of the disciples and said, “It is not right that we should give up preaching the word of God to serve tables. (Acts 6:2 ESV)

One might think that this was rather elitist and selfish of them. On the contrary. They recognised that God had called them to the preaching of the word and identified that it would not be right for them to neglect this calling.

So they equipped, blessed and released others to do it.

Therefore, brothers, pick out from among you seven men of good repute, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we will appoint to this duty. (Acts 6:3 ESV)

The qualities the men needed are interesting to note and to try and live by in any service and word we do for The Lord.

• Good Repute / attested character. So obviously had experience in life and had been seen to be Godly men.
• Full of the Holy Spirit. I believe this means spirit filled and walking in Gifting’s in the Holy Spirit.
• Wisdom of high importance. More precious than Gold even.

After they had chosen the 7 the apostles prayed for them and interestingly laid hands on them which I think is important to do when commissioning people for a specific service to The Lord.

This allowed and freed up the apostles to do what they felt so strongly called to.

But we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word.” (Acts 6:4 ESV)

If you feel called to apostolic ministry then I very much suggest you heed these words above as I really believe we have a biblical model here for ministry and service to The Lord. NOTE how prayer is Key. Prayer goes hand in hand with the preaching of Word of God.

“Apostolic may refer to; An Apostle meaning one sent on a mission” – Wikipedia

Then to check whether we are walking and working how God would want we need to check the fruit. I believe that as the Word of God increases in a city or town so will the amount of Disciples of Christ! And exponentially!

And the word of God continued to increase, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests became obedient to the faith. (Acts 6:7 ESV)

I do believe their are different callings in ministry and it is clear from this scripture that we must not neglect the practical side of ministry such as feeding the needy. Instead we should equip and release others to do this which in turn allows for the preaching of the Word to continue which will in turn release more disciples to be equipped to help the needy in our world.

How are walking in His calling?

Are we devoting ourselves to prayer and preaching of the word?

How do we equip more people to walk in what God has called them to?

Would there be or are they complaints from others how we are serving the poor and needy in our local area?

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A revelation of salvation through Jesus in the Trinity.

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How do we really know Jesus?

So I was reading Matthew 16 and verse 15.

Who do you say I am asks Jesus to Simon Peter.

Peter answers “you are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

Wow He gets it’s. This is a momentous occasion. The disciples now truly know they have the messiah with them. This is a big deal because they where so expectant and waiting for a messiah to deliver them out of their troubles.

This is the important bit bellow in verse 17

Jesus says. Blessed are you… for this was not revealed to you by man, but my my father in heaven.

So stop and meditate/ponder on the above. Have you realised who Jesus is because of man or because you know deep within the core of your being the Jesus is the messiah of the world. Maybe think of the hardest thing you are facing at the moment and ask yourself the question “do I really believe Jesus can deliver me from this and save me”

True salvation happens when people realise who Jesus is not because of what man say or convince them to believe but by the Father in heaven.

How does the father in heaven speak to us? Through the work of the Holy Spirit!

That is the mirracle and splendour of the trinity.

It’s verry interesting though how in John 14:6 Jesus says “I am the way the and the truth and the Life. No one comes to the father except through me.

Its a beautiful trinity.

You have to know Jesus to know the father. John 14:6

But only the Father can reveal this to you. Not man- Matthew 16:15

Then finally the holy spirit will be with us. Jesus calls him out counsellor. He is what is with you right now as you read this. He is with me now reminding me of this as I write these words.

John 14:25-26 All this I have spoken while still with you. BUT the COUNSELLOR, the holy spirit whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you ALL things and REMIND you of everything I have said to you.

These words above come from Jesus to comfort his disciples. They knew he was the messiah but still needed support as he was leaving them soon. The support that would come was the Holy spirit. This support is available for you today. If you need a reminder of Jesus today ask him for it and he will freely give it.

Study, meditate, chew on these words. Read the Matthew 15 scripture and the John 14 verses and ask the holy spirit to speak to you through them.

So today I pray you would come to know who Jesus really is and may the Father reveal this to you not Man. May the holy spirit lead you into the true knowledge of the messiah. May he remind you of how amazing Jesus is and how amazingly good God is. May you come to know the amazing beauty of the trinity also.

May His peace be left with you and may you receive his peace right now.

Massive blessings with you right now – Lord a fresh realisation and revelation for whoever reads this now.

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Know, recognise, and understand that the Lord is God

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So today I woke up and within a few minutes I was thinking about all the things that I have to get done. Ref a rugby match, write 150 Reports, fix my bike, go shopping etc.

I then had to stop and consciously say no I’m not going to think about organising that but actually do my quiet time.

This morning whilst reading www.odb.org something jumped out at me. The start of vers 39 says. “Know this well, then. Take it to heart right now: God is in Heaven above; God is on Earth below.” “Acknowledge and take to heart this day that the LORD is God in heaven above and on the earth below.” “Know, recognize, and understand therefore this day and turn your [mind and] heart to it that the Lord is God in the heavens above and upon the earth beneath; there is no other.”

My thought to ponder on for the day is how well do we “Acknowledge”Know this well” “Know, recognize, and understand” That God is in control and that he is above ALL. Does our mind stay fixed on him or on our own busy lives and worries? Mostly the latter if we are honest. I would say we need to get into a habit of Acknowledging that God is so much bigger and better than all that we think is important.

How do we do this? Well read on! It says “Take it to heart right now” I think that we sometimes say ok well thats ok for you but my situation is tough i’ll take heart later. NO take heart now. Understand God wants to heal you now not tomorrow or next week. Then Live by his commands be obedient to him.Keep his decrees. Do you best to live a pure a blameless life as christ has done.

Why Because the reward is great. “so that it may go well with you and your children after you and that you may live long in the land the LORD your God gives you for all time.” God wants it to Go well with us. Its a lie of the Devil that he doesn’t want us to succeed. Its interesting its not just a short lived promise but something that goes on for generations and generations. God is with us for the long distance the long haul the Marathon not just the trip round the corner or the 100M Sprint.

Deuteronomy 4:32-40

39-40 Know this well, then. Take it to heart right now: God is in Heaven above; God is on Earth below. He’s the only God there is. Obediently live by his rules and commands which I’m giving you today so that you’ll live well and your children after you—oh, you’ll live a long time in the land that God, your God, is giving you.

The Message

39 Acknowledge and take to heart this day that the LORD is God in heaven above and on the earth below. There is no other. 40 Keep his decrees and commands, which I am giving you today, so that it may go well with you and your children after you and that you may live long in the land the LORD your God gives you for all time.

The NIV

39Know, recognize, and understand therefore this day and turn your [mind and] heart to it that the Lord is God in the heavens above and upon the earth beneath; there is no other.

40Therefore you shall keep His statutes and His commandments, which I command you this day, that it may go well with you and your children after you and that you may prolong your days in the land which the Lord your God gives you forever.

Amplified Bible (AMP)

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Be blessed as you read the scriptures and let me know your thoughts. If you have any questions then please do ask. I want to say that I’m not perfect in doing the above but I do my best. So i encourage you to do your best at remembering his truths and Acknowledging that he is Above ALL.