What does Scripture say about this?


(Kirk) #1

Hello Dear Connect Community,

I am putting together material for a Men’s Ministry. One of the topics I wish to explore is “Stop obsessing about things in this world you cannot change, and put your God given gifts to work with those you can”. It is good to pray for peace, and for the lost of this world. However, sometimes we get caught up, or overly concerned with things that are tough to change (Politics, Social Movements, etc.). I have been searching for scripture and/or biblical stories that speak to this, but not finding the appropriate message. I know it’s there somewhere. Anything come to mind?

Thank you in advance, and God bless you.

Kirk Moser


(SeanO) #2

@km6264 If I am understanding correctly Matthew 6 would be appropriate - “Seeking the Kingdom and Leave the Rest to God” or “Keep your eyes fixed on Jesus” or “Run the race”. I think you could talk about running the race (Paul) or seeking the Kingdom (Jesus) with all that you are and leaving the rest to God. Matthew 6 is a nice combination of both and Paul talks about this some in Philippians.

Philippians 4:6-7 - Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Matthew 6:31-34 - So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Philippians 3:12-14 - Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.


(Warner Joseph Miller) #3

Hey there, brother! Great question, man. Immediately what came to mind were those same passages that @SeanO mentioned – Matthew 6 and Philippians 4 where Paul talks about what not to be anxious (or obsess) about:

“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” ~ Matthew 6:25‭, ‬31‭-‬34 ESV

“do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” ~
Philippians 4:6‭-‬7 ESV

And here’s what’s crazy! In the proceeding verses following Phil. 4:7, Paul then goes on to explain what we SHOULD, instead be thinking about:

“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” ~ Philippians 4:8 ESV

  • True (truth)
  • Honorable (honor, worthy of respect)
  • Just (justice, what’s right)
  • Pure (purity, goodness)
  • Holy (holiness, wholesomeness)
  • Lovely (beauty)
  • Commendable (admirable, of good repute)

In Micah 6:8, we see some of those same things mentioned:

“He has told you, O man, what is good; And what does the Lord require of you Except to do justice, and to love [and to diligently practice] kindness and mercy (compassion), And to humble yourself and walk humbly with your God [setting aside any overblown sense of importance or self-righteousness]?” ~ Micah 6:8 (Amplified Bible)

And in the last chapter of Proverbs, one of the last wise teachings that the queen mother teaches to her son, King Lemuel, is this:

“Open your mouth for the mute, for the rights of all who are destitute. Open your mouth, judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy.” ~ Proverbs 31:8-9 ESV

These are all direct charges from God and consequently, are also out-workings of the greatest commandment of which Jesus said was to love God and to love our neighbor.

Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” And the scribe said to him, “You are right, Teacher. You have truly said that He is one, and there is no other besides Him. And to love Him with all the heart and with all the understanding and with all the strength, and to love one’s neighbor as oneself, is much more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.” ~ Mark 12:29‭-‬33 ESV

What we see within these verses, specifically, and is further expounded on in Micah and Proverbs (and other places throughout scripture), are the comprehensive renderings…the instructions on how to “put our God given gifts to work”. We do this by being seekers, speakers and workers of what is:

  • True (truth)
  • Honorable (honor, worthy of respect)
  • Just (justice, what’s right)
  • Pure (purity, goodness)
  • Holy (holiness, wholesomeness)
  • Lovely (beauty)
  • Commendable (admirable, of good repute)

(Kirk) #4

Sean,

This is very helpful, and such a quick response! I am so thankful.

Kirk


(Kirk) #5

Thank you so very much Warner Joseph. You are Sean are awesome Brothers in Christ. This was very helpful, and such a quick response. I am thrilled that the Lord has led me to the RZIM Connect community. Such a valuable resource. I shall keep my eyes open for a chance to return the contribution.

God Bless.

Kirk Moser

WarnerMiller
Warner Joseph Miller
RZIM Connect Moderator

    January 16

Hey there, brother! Great question, man. Immediately what came to mind were those same passages that @SeanO mentioned – Matthew 6 and Philippians 4 where Paul talks about what not to be anxious (or obsess) about:

“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” ~ Matthew 6:25‭, ‬31‭-‬34 ESV

“do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” ~

Philippians 4:6‭-‬7 ESV

And here’s what crazy! In the proceeding verses following Phil. 4:7, Paul then goes on to tell what we SHOULD, instead be thinking about:

“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” ~ Philippians 4:8 ESV

  • True (truth)
  • Honorable (honor, worthy of respect)
  • Just (justice, what’s right)
  • Pure (purity, goodness)
  • Holy (holiness, wholesome)
  • Lovely (beauty)
  • Commendable (admirable, of good repute)
    In Micah 6:8, we see almost all of these things cited:

“He has told you, O man, what is good; And what does the Lord require of you Except to do justice, and to love [and to diligently practice] kindness and mercy (compassion), And to humble yourself and walk humbly with your God [setting aside any overblown sense of importance or self-righteousness]?” ~ Micah 6:8 (Amplified Bible)

And in the last chapter of Proverbs, one of the last wise teachings that the queen mother teaches to her son, King Lemuel is this:

“Open your mouth for the mute, for the rights of all who are destitute. Open your mouth, judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy.” ~ Proverbs 31:8-9 ESV

These are all direct charges from God and consequently, are also out-workings of the greatest commandment which Jesus said was to love God and to love our neighbor.

Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” And the scribe said to him, “You are right, Teacher. You have truly said that He is one, and there is no other besides Him. And to love Him with all the heart and with all the understanding and with all the strength, and to love one’s neighbor as oneself, is much more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.” ~ Mark 12:29‭-‬33 ESV

We see within these verses, specifically, and further expounded on in Micah and Proverbs (and other places throughout scripture), are the comprehensive renderings…the instructions on how to “put our God given gifts to work”. It’s by being seekers, speakers and workers of what is:

  • True (truth)
  • Honorable (honor, worthy of respect)
  • Just (justice, what’s right)
  • Pure (purity, goodness)
  • Holy (holiness, wholesome)
  • Lovely (beauty)
  • Commendable (admirable, of good repute)

(Timothy Loraditch) #6

@km6264 The verses offered already are all great suggestions to consider. I would add that there are few issues in our world today that did not exist during Jesus’ time. Corrupt leaders, terrorism, economic collapse, sexual immorality, etc etc etc. Eccl. 1:9 “there is nothing new under the sun.” Yet Jesus said little about how to respond to the world. Instead, He focused on preaching the good news, healing the sick and caring for the poor.

He did not argue for universal health care He prayed for the sick. He did not form a political task force He just spoke the truth. He did not worry about money but He knowingly put His purse in the hands of a thief who stole from it and would later betray Him. He did not worry about the angry crowds but walked every day in faith. He lived His life as an example for us of how we should live each day.


(Kirk) #7

Timothy,

Great response! Many thanks and blessings to you.

Kirk


(Tony Hacker ) #8

First of all, that’s awesome that you are willing to be used to discipline men! God bless you and give you love- and wisdom and guidance to direct men to the King of Kings!
Im also a part of a men’s leadership team and have roughly 25 to 45 guys meeting every Saturday morning at 7:05 am at the local Denny’s. They reserve the whole back room for us every week and every week the Holy Spirit shows up in Word, fellowship, testimony, prayer and giving.

I have just a couple more verses just to add to your recipe.

2 Timothy 2:23-25 NLT — Again I say, don’t get involved in foolish, ignorant arguments that only start fights. A servant of the Lord must not quarrel but must be kind to everyone, be able to teach, and be patient with difficult people. Gently instruct those who oppose the truth. Perhaps God will change those people’s hearts, and they will learn the truth.

Titus 3:8-11 NASB — This is a trustworthy statement; and concerning these things I want you to speak confidently, so that those who have believed God will be careful to engage in good deeds. These things are good and profitable for men. But avoid foolish controversies and genealogies and strife and disputes about the Law, for they are unprofitable and worthless. Reject a factious man after a first and second warning, knowing that such a man is perverted and is sinning, being self-condemned.

I myself am one who can get “overly” interested in the latest issue or conspiracy and have to have constant redirection to what’s most important. Loving God, loving each other.

Good tidings brotha


(Kirk) #9

The blessings from this sight keep pouring in! The RZIM Connection is an awesome resource.

Thank you Tony.

Kirk


(Andrew Shaw) #10

The first couple of versus at the start of that same chapter of Titus are particularly appropriate for Social Media, I think…

Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready to do whatever is good, to slander no one, to be peaceable and considerate, and always to be gentle toward everyone. Titus 3:1-2

1Tim2:1-4 is helpful too…

I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.


(Timothy Loraditch) #11

@km6264 upon further reflection, I have further thoughts about my response. I am reminded about William Wilberforce who fought in England to end slavery and Dietrich Bonhoeffer who stood up against the Nazism. Richard Wurmbrand founded Voice of the Martyrs and Martin Luther King who marched on Washington. These are all Christians who, lead by the hand of God, did speak into the world and change things dramatically.

Hearing from God doesn’t have clear rules, does it?