Responding to Our Knowledge of God - Patience

Faith Church August 4, 2007 Daniel 11:32

 

Introduction:

1.  We’re continuing our new series today in our Worship Service:  Reaching New Heights in Our Knowledge of God!

- our goal is to further APPLY the subject to our lives as an ABF, so we’ve entitle our ABF study: Responding to Our Knowledge of God

2.  Remember the words of Daniel: 

  • Daniel 11:32 "…but the people who know their God will display strength and take action.”

- Christianity is a religion of action . . . we are to be doing what God wants us to do!

- we also tried to tie this into Paul’s words:

  • Philippians 3:10 that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death

know’ = knowledge based on personal experience (because of the interaction/relationship)

- not just an intellectual knowledge, but a PRACTICAL knowledge of God (a life of obedience, a attitude of hope, and high motivation for future service to demonstrate that faith in God and what you truly believe about Him!)

Input: What have you learned so far from this study that has helped you the most in knowing God better (which attribute has impacted you the most)?

(Holiness / Faithfulness / Justice/ Presence / Love / Power / Sovereignty / Mercy /  Last week: Omniscience)

[various answers]

4.  We’re coming to a conclusion of this study, but our purpose has been to

*  The purpose of our study:

1) to GLORIFY God by with our praise of worship of Who He is

2) to put that knowledge into ACTION! – especially the way we respond when God demonstrates His particular attribute (either in a way that we understand, or in a way we don’t understand . . . but still have to walk by faith!)

Input: Why is the concept of God’s patience hard to understand at times?

We are SO impatient – we want what we want and we want it NOW!

- just remember the last time a car cut you off on or didn’t go as fast as you wanted!

Note: I think we struggle with our impatience because we focus more on the temporal than the eternal!

- if we would look at things through the grid of God’s eternal eyes – we’d see things differently!!

- there is no greater example of PATIENCE than God modeling it perfectly to His people!

I.  Reaching New Heights in Our Knowledge of God’s PATIENCE!

- the Greek word for patience means this:

* patience = a state of emotional quietness in the face of unfavorable circumstances

* One of our goals in this study is to learn more about God . . . and His PATIENCE so we will understand how we should be PATIENT

- because God is patient, we should ….

1)  exercise our faith in a God Who is very patient with us (and ‘wait on the Lord’!)

2)  proclaim this truth of God’s patience to others – yet explain His judgment is coming! (Romans 2 – the passage we focused/will focus on in the worship service)

3)  model this attribute of patience to others because God is patient with us!

- each week, we’ve been asking a set of questions for you to consider in the context of the specific aspect of God that is being presented in the Worship Service!

II.  Responding to Our Knowledge of God’s Patience!

Q: Do you really believe that God is patient with you?

- think about the words of this verse:

  • Isaiah 7:13 Then he said, "Listen now, O house of David! Is it too slight a thing for you to try the patience of men, that you will try the patience of my God as well?”
  • What other passages communicate this attribute of God? [various answers]

(especially passages where WE need to be patient)

  • 1 Corinthians 13:4 Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant,
  • Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
  • Ephesians 4:2 with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love,
  • Colossians 1:11 strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for the attaining of all steadfastness and patience; joyously
  • Colossians 3:12 So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience;
  • 1 Thessalonians 5:14 We urge you, brethren, admonish the unruly, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with everyone.
  • 2 Timothy 2:24 The Lord's bond-servant must not be quarrelsome, but be kind to all, able to teach, patient when wronged,
  • Hebrews 6:15 And so, having patiently waited, he obtained the promise. [Referring to Abraham!]
  • James 5:7 Therefore be patient, brethren, until the coming of the Lord. The farmer waits for the precious produce of the soil, being patient about it, until it gets the early and late rains.
  • 1 Peter 2:20 For what credit is there if, when you sin and are harshly treated, you endure it with patience? But if when you do what is right and suffer for it you patiently endure it, this finds favor with God.
  • 1 Peter 3:20 who once were disobedient, when the patience of God kept waiting in the days of Noah, during the construction of the ark, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through the water.
  • 2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.
  • 2 Peter 3:15 and regard the patience of our Lord as salvation; just as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given him, wrote to you
  • What impact should this attribute have in the following areas: [various answers]
  • Temptation to sin:

- God will be patient with me as I grow, but I can’t presume upon His patience and think, “I can go ahead and sin, and everything will be OK”

- sometimes I sin because I’m in too big of a hurry to get what I want – patience can keep me from sinning at times (especially if I think from an eternal perspective, not an temporal view!

  • Facing Trials (suffering, illness, disappointments)

- this is one of the ways God teaches me patience

- I need to wait on the Lord and He will strengthen my heart (Psalms

  • Psalm 37:7 Rest in the LORD and wait patiently for Him;
  • Psalm 39:7 "And now, Lord, for what do I wait? My hope is in You.
  • Psalm 147:11 The LORD favors those who fear Him, those who wait for His lovingkindness.
  • Isaiah 40:31 Yet those who wait for the LORD Will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary.
  • Conflicts with people:

- I need to ‘walk in the Spirit’ (producing the fruit of the Spirit . . . patience) and be patient with others when they seemingly fail

- WAIT before you get angry (get the facts, you could be wrong!)

- Remember the law of the harvest – ‘what you sow is what you reap’ – so treat others the way you want to be treated

- Remember, growth takes time (PROGRESSIVE sanctification – not INSTANT sanctification – give others time to grow like God gives you time to grow!)

  • Prayer Life:

- BE PATIENT – God’s timing does not always equal our – that’s doesn’t mean He’s said “NO”, it may simply be God wants to teach you to wait as He reveals His will for your life

Don’t stop asking just because you don’t know the answer yet!

  • How can you emphasize this attribute to your family (spouse, children) and friends?

- in marriage – model patience with your spouse like God shows patience with you

- in parenting – demonstrate patience with your kids

- keep things on a prayer list till God says “NO” – talk to each other about being patient and trusting God and not being in a hurry

- remind each other about the Cross and God’s patience with us.

  • How can we help each other grow in this quality?

- pray together and encourage each other to continue to pray

- keep reminding each other about the Cross and God’s patience with us

- when someone is being impatient (and sinfully so), be willing to confront them and challenge that person from the Word to grow/show the patience Jesus demonstrated on this earth with His imperfect disciples

  • KEY QUESTION:  What impact should this attribute have on the following?
  • Outreach:  People aren’t usually likely to get saved the first time you talk to them; but God is patient with them, so we can be patient with those who seem to reject the message! [KEEP TRYING!]
  • Praise/Worship:  Thank God for His patience with us as we grow and try to please Him
  • Discipleship/Growth:  

-Don’t expect people to be perfect, but expect them to grow; if God is patient, I should be growing little by little daily, weekly, monthly, etc.

- don’t get frustrated when people don’t grow at the rate you want them to (be patient – even with your own children, spouse, fellow church members, etc.)

  • Serving (use of gifts/abilities):

- don’t react when someone challenges you about the way you serve (i.e. they are critical); instead, be patient and learn/grow due to the criticism

- realizing you can’t accomplish everything, but with God’s grace/strength, we accomplish more than we can imagine!

  • One another ministry (Building Meaningful Relationships):

- be patient with one another (we’re part of the Body of Christ – show it!)

Conclusion:

Q:  How would you rate yourself and/or your family on the issue of being patient with:

1)  God and His timing of various events and situations in your life?

2)   With other people and their failures and imperfections and slow growth? 

Faith Church