Reapers Roadmap Review (The 9 R’s Roadmap) and then Focus on Resisting & Reasoning
The Reapers Roadmap materials previously presented summarized how the Bible’s Gospel of John 1:10-13 and the “Parable of the Sower” found in Matthew 13:1-9 shows the way redemption typically happens, or regretfully fails to happen. That is, it shows how people come to faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, or choose another course both for their life on earth and more importantly for eternity.
John 1:9-13 (NIV): 9 The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. 11 He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. 12 But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.
God reveals his word and ways so people have the chance to learn more and get to know God better by applying their reason and strength. God presents his message both to Jews and Gentiles. Today, God through his word and the Holy Spirit calls to those who attend Christian Services and who hear God’s word elsewhere along life’s paths. In the “Parable of the Sower” this is like dropping seeds of God’s word along the path, as illustrated in the Bible in Matthew 13:1-9.
Parable of the Sower: Matthew 13: 1-9 (NIV): 1 That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat by the lake. 2 Such large crowds gathered around him that he got into a boat and sat in it, while all the people stood on the shore. 3 Then he told them many things in parables, saying: “A farmer went out to sow his seed. 4 As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. 5 Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. 6 But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. 7 Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants. 8 Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop—a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown. 9 He who has ears, let him hear.“
Resisting & Reasoning Review
Many people know and have heard God’s word is good, yet resist and ignore it to their own present and eternal detriment. Some suspect obeying God will mean turning from their sinful ways and lifestyles that they want to continue. Some fear society will impart a cost like rejection and reduced influence in life. Some are worried their wealth outlook in life will be reduced by choosing what is right. Similarly, the parable of the sower presents the worries of life and deceitfulness of wealth as the reasons. These people use their reasoning capability to decide it’s better to focus on other things in life, so they’d rather ignore, resist, and reject God’s word, than to seek it out with their whole heart, mind, and body.
Parable of the Sower Explained: Matthew 13:22 (NIV): 22 The one who received the seed that fell among the thorns is the man who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke it, making it unfruitful.
We see God’s sorrow for Israel, as they resist God, and willingly forgo God’s generous grace and mercy, that God’s will prefers, and longs for them to embrace.
Matthew 23:37 (NIV): 37“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing.
The time each person has to search for and recognize God and God’s word is limited, while God can be found, as the scripture reveals in Isaiah 55:6, so it’s important to learn the truth when the opportunity presents itself.
Isaiah 55:6 (NASB): 6 Seek the LORD while He may be found; Call upon Him while He is near.
Focus on Resisting & Reasoning
Jesus has authorized his followers to reveal to the world what he shared in secret, even though the world often resists and rejects it.
Matthew 10:27 (NIV): 27 What I tell you in the dark, speak in the daylight; what is whispered in your ear, proclaim from the roofs.
Those who resist God’s word have been known to resort to name calling, physical abuse, betrayal, hatred, and killing too.
Matthew 10:17-25 (NIV): 17 “Be on your guard against men; they will hand you over to the local councils and flog you in their synagogues. 18 On my account you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. 19 But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, 20 for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you. 21 “Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; children will rebel against their parents and have them put to death. 22 All men will hate you because of me, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved. 23 When you are persecuted in one place, flee to another. I tell you the truth, you will not finish going through the cities of Israel before the Son of Man comes. 24 “A student is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his master. 25 It is enough for the student to be like his teacher, and the servant like his master. If the head of the house has been called Beelzebub, how much more the members of his household!
Those who resist and reject God’s good news of grace through belief are subjected to God’s law, which exposes their guilt, obligations, and condemnation. It is much better to receive God’s word and sincerely seek to understand it, so as to receive God’s grace and mercy guaranteed by his promises, rather than judgement.
1 Timothy 1:8-11 (NIV): 8 We know that the law is good if one uses it properly. 9 We also know that law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious; for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, 10 for adulterers and perverts, for slave traders and liars and perjurers—and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine 11 that conforms to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, which he entrusted to me.
When opposed, Jesus the Son of God stressed the importance to believe in the miracles, to come to know the truth of his identity, even for those who were currently not of his flock.
John 14:11 (NIV): 11Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves.
Because of this, it’s important to learn more about Jesus’ miracles, and how those miracles mirror and match the work God performed prior to his coming. The Bible shows several prophets who worked through God to perform miracles and also shows Jesus the Son of God performing similar miracles. For those who are scientifically inclined, and wish to know how science is consistent with miracles, you can later read the CreationOpia blog at http://CreationOpia.WordPress.com to understand a paradigm that provides a scientific vantage point on God’s performing miracles.
Miracles: God and the Son of God
There are several miracles that God performed prior to sending the Son of God, Jesus Christ who performed similar miracles according to God’s will. These miracles include resurrections, healings, controlling nature, and feeding people.
The prophet Elijah asked God and the boy was raised back to life by God.
1 Kings 17: 17-24 (NIV): 17 Some time later the son of the woman who owned the house became ill. He grew worse and worse, and finally stopped breathing. 18 She said to Elijah, “What do you have against me, man of God? Did you come to remind me of my sin and kill my son?” 19 “Give me your son,” Elijah replied. He took him from her arms, carried him to the upper room where he was staying, and laid him on his bed. 20 Then he cried out to the LORD, “O LORD my God, have you brought tragedy also upon this widow I am staying with, by causing her son to die?” 21 Then he stretched himself out on the boy three times and cried to the LORD, “O LORD my God, let this boy’s life return to him!” 22 The LORD heard Elijah’s cry, and the boy’s life returned to him, and he lived. 23 Elijah picked up the child and carried him down from the room into the house. He gave him to his mother and said, “Look, your son is alive!” 24 Then the woman said to Elijah, “Now I know that you are a man of God and that the word of the LORD from your mouth is the truth.”
Likewise, Jesus the Son of God raised Jairus’ daughter back to life.
Mark 5:35-43 (NIV): 35 While Jesus was still speaking, some men came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue ruler. “Your daughter is dead,” they said. “Why bother the teacher any more?” 36 Ignoring what they said, Jesus told the synagogue ruler, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.“ 37 He did not let anyone follow him except Peter, James and John the brother of James. 38 When they came to the home of the synagogue ruler, Jesus saw a commotion, with people crying and wailing loudly. 39 He went in and said to them, “Why all this commotion and wailing? The child is not dead but asleep.” 40 But they laughed at him. After he put them all out, he took the child’s father and mother and the disciples who were with him, and went in where the child was. 41 He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha koum!” (which means, “Little girl, I say to you, get up!” ). 42 Immediately the girl stood up and walked around (she was twelve years old). At this they were completely astonished. 43 He gave strict orders not to let anyone know about this, and told them to give her something to eat.
A widow’s son was made alive again by Jesus the Son of God.
Luke 7:11-17 (NIV): 11 Soon afterward, Jesus went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd went along with him. 12 As he approached the town gate, a dead person was being carried out—the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the town was with her. 13 When the Lord saw her, his heart went out to her and he said, “Don’t cry.” 14 Then he went up and touched the coffin, and those carrying it stood still. He said, “Young man, I say to you, get up!” 15 The dead man sat up and began to talk, and Jesus gave him back to his mother. 16 They were all filled with awe and praised God. “A great prophet has appeared among us,” they said. “God has come to help his people.” 17 This news about Jesus spread throughout Judea and the surrounding country.
Jesus the Son of God also restored Lazarus’ life after he’d already been dead four days.
John 11:38-43 (NIV): 38 Jesus, once more deeply moved, came to the tomb. It was a cave with a stone laid across the entrance. 39 “Take away the stone,” he said. ”But, Lord,” said Martha, the sister of the dead man, “by this time there is a bad odor, for he has been there four days.” 40 Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?“ 41 So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. 42 I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.“ 43 When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” 44 The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face. Jesus said to them, “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.“
Prior to Jesus, Elisha, a prophet and messenger from the Lord, healed Naaman, the commander of King Aram’s army, of a skin disease.
2 Kings 5:9-16 (NIV): 9 So Naaman went with his horses and chariots and stopped at the door of Elisha’s house. 10 Elisha sent a messenger to say to him, “Go, wash yourself seven times in the Jordan, and your flesh will be restored and you will be cleansed.” 11 But Naaman went away angry and said, “I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the LORD his God, wave his hand over the spot and cure me of my leprosy. 12 Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than any of the waters of Israel? Couldn’t I wash in them and be cleansed?” So he turned and went off in a rage. 13 Naaman’s servants went to him and said, “My father, if the prophet had told you to do some great thing, would you not have done it? How much more, then, when he tells you, ‘Wash and be cleansed’!” 14 So he went down and dipped himself in the Jordan seven times, as the man of God had told him, and his flesh was restored and became clean like that of a young boy. 15 Then Naaman and all his attendants went back to the man of God. He stood before him and said, “Now I know that there is no God in all the world except in Israel. Please accept now a gift from your servant.” 16 The prophet answered, “As surely as the LORD lives, whom I serve, I will not accept a thing.” And even though Naaman urged him, he refused.
Likewise, Jesus the Son of God cured people of their skin disease too.
Luke 5:12-16 (NIV): 12 While Jesus was in one of the towns, a man came along who was covered with leprosy.When he saw Jesus, he fell with his face to the ground and begged him, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.” 13 Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” he said. “Be clean!” And immediately the leprosy left him. 14 Then Jesus ordered him, “Don’t tell anyone, but go, show yourself to the priest and offer the sacrifices that Moses commanded for your cleansing, as a testimony to them.“
Luke 17:11-19 (NIV): 11 Now on his way to Jerusalem, Jesus traveled along the border between Samaria and Galilee. 12As he was going into a village, ten men who had leprosymet him. They stood at a distance 13 and called out in a loud voice, “Jesus, Master, have pity on us!” 14 When he saw them, he said, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed. 15 One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. 16 He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him—and he was a Samaritan. 17 Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? 18 Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?” 19 Then he said to him, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.“
Jonah was sent by God to preach to the great city Nineveh about their upcoming destruction because of their wickedness, in a place located in the middle east today. The great city contained 120,000 people, plus many animals, and usually took 3 days to travel from end-to-end. Jonah was disobedient and went the other way on a ship headed for Spain. God sent a storm by Jonah was sleeping. God calmed the storm after Jonah was thrown into the sea.
Jonah 1:11-17 (NIV): 11 The sea was getting rougher and rougher. So they asked him, “What should we do to you to make the sea calm down for us?” 12 “Pick me up and throw me into the sea,” he replied, “and it will become calm. I know that it is my fault that this great storm has come upon you.” 13 Instead, the men did their best to row back to land. But they could not, for the sea grew even wilder than before. 14 Then they cried to the LORD, “O LORD, please do not let us die for taking this man’s life. Do not hold us accountable for killing an innocent man, for you, O LORD, have done as you pleased.” 15 Then they took Jonah and threw him overboard, and the raging sea grew calm. 16 At this the men greatly feared the LORD, and they offered a sacrifice to the LORD and made vows to him. 17 But the LORD provided a great fish to swallow Jonah, and Jonah was inside the fish three days and three nights.
At Jesus’ the Son of God’s word the storms calmed.
Luke 8: 22-25 (NIV): 22 One day Jesus said to his disciples, “Let’s go over to the other side of the lake.” So they got into a boat and set out. 23 As they sailed, he fell asleep. A squall came down on the lake, so that the boat was being swamped, and they were in great danger. 24 The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Master, Master, we’re going to drown!” He got up and rebuked the wind and the raging waters; the storm subsided, and all was calm. 25 “Where is your faith?” he asked his disciples. In fear and amazement they asked one another, “Who is this? He commands even the winds and the water, and they obey him.”
God provided food called manna in the desert for Israel on their way to the promised land.
Exodus 16:4-5 (NIV): 4 Then the LORD said to Moses, “I will rain down bread from heaven for you. The people are to go out each day and gather enough for that day. In this way I will test them and see whether they will follow my instructions. 5 On the sixth day they are to prepare what they bring in, and that is to be twice as much as they gather on the other days.”
Exodus 16:31-32 (NIV): 31 The people of Israel called the bread manna. It was white like coriander seed and tasted like wafers made with honey. 32 Moses said, “This is what the LORD has commanded: ‘Take an omer of manna and keep it for the generations to come, so they can see the bread I gave you to eat in the desert when I brought you out of Egypt.’ “
Jesus fed 5,000 men plus women and children, starting with only 5 bread loaves and 2 fishes.
Luke 9:13-17 (NIV): 13 He replied, “You give them something to eat.” They answered, “We have only five loaves of bread and two fish—unless we go and buy food for all this crowd.” 14 (About five thousand men were there.) But he said to his disciples, “Have them sit down in groups of about fifty each.” 15 The disciples did so, and everybody sat down. 16 Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke them. Then he gave them to the disciples to set before the people. 17 They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over.
More Miracles Ahead
Jesus performed many miracles. Further miracles performed include healing a paralytic (see Luke 5:17-26), healing a shrivelled hand (see Luke 6:6-11), curing a centurion’s servant (see Luke 7:1-9), and more that you can learn about further in the Bible in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John at the Net Bible Online http://www.netbible.org , which also contains information on the original Greek words with translators notes. For those who are scientifically inclined, and wish to know how science is consistent with miracles, you can later read the CreationOpia blog at http://CreationOpia.WordPress.com to understand a paradigm that provides a scientific vantage point on God’s performing miracles.
Keep Reasoning to Question Any Resisting Before It’s Too Late
Jesus, the Son of God, intercedes with the God the Father, on our behalf, to provide us the opportunity to learn more about God, so we can believe and repent from our wrongdoing. Be happy that God has provided you an opportunity to learn more, consider your ways, learn about God’s ways, and to repent.
Luke 13:1-9 (NIV): 1 Now there were some present at that time who told Jesus about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mixed with their sacrifices. 2 Jesus answered, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans because they suffered this way? 3 I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish. 4 Or those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them—do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem? 5 I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish.“ 6 Then he told this parable: “A man had a fig tree, planted in his vineyard, and he went to look for fruit on it, but did not find any. 7 So he said to the man who took care of the vineyard, ‘For three years now I’ve been coming to look for fruit on this fig tree and haven’t found any. Cut it down! Why should it use up the soil?’ 8 ” ‘Sir,’ the man replied, ‘leave it alone for one more year, and I’ll dig around it and fertilize it. 9 If it bears fruit next year, fine! If not, then cut it down.’ “
Go and learn more, knowing the time each person has to search for and recognize God and God’s word is limited, while God can be found, as the scripture reveals in Isaiah 55:6.
Isaiah 55:6 (NASB): 6 Seek the LORD while He may be found; Call upon Him while He is near.
The website http://www.biblica.com/bible/audio contains audio versions of the bible in the New International Version (NIV) and Today’s NIV (TNIV) translations, while the website http://www.biblegateway.com contains various textual translations, plus links to audio too. As the bible can be difficult to understand clearly, recommend you listen to preachers at http://www.sermonaudio.com . You can also reference sermon audio, books, and articles online at http://www.desiringgod.org too.
Key Points: Resisting & Reasoning
- Because God cares for how people turn out, God is ________ when people are unwilling to follow his wise council since God knows the disastrous eternal consequences.
- Excessively _______ about life and obsessively pursuing the deceitfulness of _______ causes many to _______ and _______ God’s life plans personally.
- People who ______ and ______ God’s will personally are often found oppressing God’s people collectively.
- Believe Jesus’ ______ directly or believe the evidence of the _________, to come to know the truth about Jesus’ identity.
- Recorded __________ miracles teach us God’s power over death, like when Jesus raised Jairus’ daughter and the widow’s son and Lazarus, and Elijah raising the woman’s son.
- Amazing ________ miracles demonstrate God’s supremacy over our human body like when Elisha and Jesus cured skin diseases.
- Shocking miracles controlling ________ exhibit God’s dominance over creations’ physical elements, like the storm resting when Jonah was thrown overboard, and Jesus calming the fierce lake storm with his rebuke.
- God’s ________ miracles showcase the extremes God goes to provide, like when God provided _______ in the desert for Israel and Jesus provided for thousands, with only 5 bread loaves and 2 fishes.
- Jesus’ miracles ______ and ______ those performed by God previously, adding credibility to believing Jesus’ identity as the Son of God the Father.
- Use your _________ to question any resisting and rejecting before it is too late by _______ for God while he can be found and _________ so you will not perish.
Discussion Questions: Resisting & Reasoning
(1) Have you ever stubbornly ignored wise advice that you later regretted ignoring? When did you come to realize it? How could you have been more open minded to wise advice?
(2) Have you or a friend ever resisted or rejected Jesus? What insights do you have into why? What happened? Is God still tugging at the person’s heart? Is it too late for the person? In what ways is the person open or closed minded?
(3) What concerns and desires in this life distract from focusing on the eternal prize God offers?
(4) Why did Jesus perform miracles? Was that his primary mission? How are Jesus’ miracles like those God performed via earlier messengers?
(5) What witness do Jesus’ miracles show about his character, his origins, and his endorsement by God the Father?
(6) Do you have difficulty understanding miracles? Does your lack of understanding hinder your belief or strengthen your belief, knowing God is beyond us?
(7) What questions do you want God to grant you to find & share insights about as you investigate scriptures and learn from his people?
(8) If you could perform miracles like healings, feedings, controlling nature, and resurrections, what would you do? How would you aim to influence others’ belief’s when asking God to perform miracles through you? What can you accomplish in your lifetime to help others just by applying worldly tools like charity and medicine and influence? What will you do?
(9) What can you offer from your journey to know God that will be helpful to those with you who are struggling to know if God is, who God is, and whether to follow God?
View the Parable of the Sower Slideshare Presentation.
You can also directly view the Parable of the Sower presentation at the Slideshare link http://www.slideshare.net/creationary/parable-of-the-sower-and-reapers-roadmap-slide-share
Continue your studies on the Parable of the Sower:
Hand Drawn Resisting & Reasoning
Key Points: Resisting & Reasoning: Answers
- Because God cares for how people turn out, God is sorrowful when people are unwilling to follow his wise council since God knows the disastrous eternal consequences.
- Excessively worrying about life and obsessively pursuing the deceitfulness of wealth causes many to resist and reject God’s life plans personally.
- People who resist and reject God’s will personally are often found oppressing God’s people collectively.
- Believe Jesus’ words directly or believe the evidence of the miracles , to come to know the truth about Jesus’ identity.
- Recorded resurrection miracles teach us God’s power over death, like when Jesus raised Jairus’ daughter and the widow’s son and Lazarus, and Elijah raising the woman’s son.
- Amazing healing miracles demonstrate God’s supremacy over our human body like when Elisha and Jesus cured skin diseases.
- Shocking miracles controlling nature exhibit God’s dominance over creations’ physical elements, like the storm resting when Jonah was thrown overboard, and Jesus calming the fierce lake storm with his rebuke.
- God’s feeding miracles showcase the extremes God goes to provide, like when God provided manna in the desert for Israel and Jesus provided for thousands, with only 5 bread loaves and 2 fishes.
- Jesus’ miracles match and mirror those performed by God previously, adding credibility to believing Jesus’ identity as the Son of God the Father.
- Use your reasoning to question any resisting and rejecting before it is too late by searching for God while he can be found and repenting so you will not perish.