Archive of ‘Bible Study’ category

Shattering the Lies We Believe (Part 2): Where Do Lies Come From?

JoyPedrow.com In Part 1 of this series, Shattering the Lies We Believe (Part 1): What Are Lies? I shared how lies are imposters of the truth. Believing lies results in choosing second best over God, who is the best. This post focuses on the creation of lies. The only way to shatter the lies from our life is to first figure out where they come from.

Where do lies come from?

Lies come from satan. “…He does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies(John 8:43-44).

The enemy wants us to turn our back on God and believe lies. When we allow ourselves to believe satan’s lies, we take the crown off of Jesus’ head and give it to satan. We make him king. (Click here to read a previous post: Take Off Your Crown – Jesus is King.)

We are giving the enemy a crown he does not deserve. Satan is the king of only one thing – lies. He claimed to be like God, what a huge lie! In fact, the Bible tells us that this is why satan was cast out of heaven. Satan said he was more powerful than God (Isaiah 14:12-14).

The scary thing is – we act like satan when we claim to be like God.  When we believe that our plans are better than God’s, we act like satan. For example, I act like satan when I want control over my weight, what food I can eat, when I get married, and what decisions I make. I subconsciously play God when I want my own plans instead of God’s plans. (more…)

Shattering the Lies We Believe (Part 1): What Are Lies?

JoyPedrow.com

“Our hearts often detect the lies long before our minds begin to process them.”

We fail to realize that we are believing lies until they effect us. How scary is that. The enemy wants us to believe lies because he wants to ruin our relationship with God. The good news is that lies have no power over us. In this 3 part series, I will unpack what scripture tells us about believing lies. By looking to scripture, we can define lies, discover where they come from, and learn how to break free from their grips. As a resource, here is a step by step guide on a craft idea for a women’s ministry night: Women’s Ministry Craft Night: Shattering the Lies We Believe. Feel free to combine this series with the activity for an empowering women’s night! (more…)

Take Off Your Crown – Jesus is King

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We like to think that we are in charge of our life. I have a friend that is exploring her faith and she told me, “The biggest thing that is holding me back from making the decision to follow Jesus is that I still want control.” My friend wants to be king over her life. She understands that if she follows Jesus, she has to give up control.

Giving up control scares us, because the uncertainty freaks us out. But when we give up control, we gain freedom.

We want to be king. In our eyes, being king equates to having control of our lives and fulfilling the desires of our hearts. But there can only be one king. You or Jesus.

Taking off your crown and giving it to Jesus is not a one time decision, but a daily decision.

The word “crown” is mentioned 57 times in the  ESV Bible. Here are a few of those verses and the importance of a crown.

  • “And he took the crown of their king from his head.” – 2 Samuel 12:30.  David took off the crown and placed it on his head. What does this mean? There can only be one king.
  • “The king loved Esther more than all the women, and she won grace and favor in his sight more than all the virgins, so that he set the royal crown on her head and made her queen instead of Vashti.” – Ester 2:17. Their can only be one queen.
  • He has stripped from me my glory and taken the crown from my head.” – Job 19:9. If we don’t remove our crown from our own head, Jesus will.
  • “You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the Lord, and a royal diadem in the hand of your God.” – Isaiah 62:3. When you give Jesus your crown, you become a crown of beauty in his eyes.
  • “and twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on his head and put a reed in his right hand. And kneeling before him, they mocked him, saying, ‘Hail, King of the Jews!’ ” – Matthew 27:29. Jesus wore a crown of thorns. If we continue to make ourselves kings, we are mocking Jesus. Jesus wore the crown of thorns for us. He took on our sins for us. And what do we do? Take the crown off his head and place it on ours.

There can not be 2 kings.
We need to pray for strength to take off our own crowns and give them to Jesus.

“Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.” – James 4:10. Humble yourself by taking off your prideful crown, giving it to Jesus, and then you will experience the true prize – being exalted by Jesus the one and only King.

What area of your life is it hardest to take off your crown and give Jesus control?

Bonus: Here are more verses about crowns you can read: Rev 2:10, 3:11, 6:2, 12:1, 14:14. 1 Peter 5:4, Jas 1:12


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Even Jesus Spent Time with God + Book Review

 The more you know God-2

Spending time with God is the answer to most of our problems, especially our trust issues. I realized, that the days I struggle trusting God most are the days I don’t spend time with him. Do you trust in God’s plan for your life? Do you spend time with God on a regular basis through reading the Bible or praying?

You will begin to trust God more and know God more, the more you spend time with him.

Often, we wonder why our plans for our lives are different from God’s plans for our lives. We question, “Why hasn’t God given me ___?” Then, we begin to think that God doesn’t love us because he has not given us what we want. This happens because we think our values are the same as God’s values. We think we share the same channel of thoughts as God. But If we don’t spend time with God, we don’t know his channel. This lack of time together creates miscommunication between God and us. And a lack of trust.

To know God and understand why he does things, we have to spend time with him. Even Jesus had to spend time with God, and he is God! It is that much more important that we spend time with God!
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God’s Love Letter to You

God's love. joypedrow.com

You know those nights where you feel so unloved and alone? When you wish you could have someone to hold you and tell you they love you? The love we experience on earth will never compare to God’s love for us. Our hearts have been made to cry out for a love that can only come from our creator.

A guy may seem like the best fix, but only God’s love is a lasting solution. This truth is written all over the Bible.

Did you know that the Bible is God’s love letter to us? Isaiah 43 is a great example of a love letter from God. When I study scripture, I like to read it and then write it out in my own words. This helps me better understand what I have read. For this particular chapter, I read the passage as if God hand wrote me a love letter in beautiful calligraphy. I wrote it in my journal in the exact same way. You can do the same thing. (more…)

Who does God say you are?

Who does God say that I am?

Dear friend, God says that you are:

  • Forgiven.
    “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” -1 John 1:9.
  • Justified.
    “and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.” -Romans 3:24.
  • Set free.
    “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.” -Romans 8:1-2. (more…)

Why did God create us?

Why did God create us? Have you ever wondered why God created us?

Think about a statue. On my college campus, we have a statue of Martin Luther King. What is the purpose of that statue? A statue is an image erected to display an event or a person who has achieved something in their lives that we want to remember. The image points to the original person and brings them glory.

We were created to be God’s statues and images.

Genesis 1:26-27:“Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals,and over all the creatures that move along the ground. So God created mankind in his own image,in the image of God he created them;male and female he created them.”

God made human beings in his image so that the world would be filled with reflectors of himself.

Today there are over 7 billion people in the world. 7 billion people created in the image of God. 7 billion people who point to God.

God created us for his glory.

Here are some additional verses and questions to reflect on:

  • Isaiah 6:3, Romans 1: 19-20, Isaiah 49:3, Isaiah 61:1-3
  • How are you pointing the world to God’s glory? For example, we can reflect God’s glory in our love, patience, forgiveness, kindness, and faithfulness.
  • How are you not pointing the world to God’s glory?
  • How will your thinking and feelings change if you truly understand why God created you?

Important to note: God does not need us to make him glorious. He does not need to be enhanced. When he calls us to glorify him, we don’t make him glorious, he already is. Being a statue for God means we are called to show and display his glory.

JoyPedrow.com

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Without Jesus, Without Hope

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This semester I’m taking a class called Illness, Grief and Loss. Obviously, it is a sad class, but it is especially sad when most of the students have no hope.

Last week we had to write papers on how we define loss, what loss we have experienced, and how we cope with it. Then we had to present our papers to the class. Each story was sadder than the next. By the end of the class, students and even the professor, were in tears. Most of the presentations included stories of how each person experienced loss, but almost none of the students shared how they coped. This made me think, have they coped?

When you don’t know Jesus, you lack hope. Jesus provides you with hope and gives loss a purpose.

In chapter 11 of the book of John, there was a man named Lazarus who died. His two sisters, Mary and Martha, were devastated and weeped at Jesus’ feet. This created a chain of weeping. “When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled… Jesus wept.” (verses 33 and 35)

This is similar to the experience I had in my class. One person’s sadness caused another to be saddened. Unlike my class experience, this story has hope.

Jesus turned the loss into a miracle. Jesus turned death to life. Jesus brought back Lazarus from death. He not only literally saved Lazarus, but he also spiritually saved many others. Immediately following the story of Lazarus, verse 45 says, “Therefore many of the Jews who had come to visit Mary, and had seen what Jesus did, believed in him.”

God used loss to save people, to bring hope and a purpose.

When I refer to loss, I do not simply mean loss of lives by death. Loss can be found in many forms- divorce, friendship, moving to a new place, or change of plans. Here are some examples of the word loss found in the Bible – lose of time (Ex 21:19), loss of lives (2 Sam 18:7), uncertainty (Act 25:20), and loss of material goods (Acts 27:10).

Mary, Martha, and Jesus all felt sadness, pain, and grief, but every tear had a purpose. In our times of grief, we may only see the tears and may tend to focus on the present moment. If we look at grief through Jesus and his eternal perspective, we will see the world differently. Mary and Martha had no idea that lives would be spiritually saved that day, because they were focused on the pain, the loss of their brother. We too focus on the pain, and have no idea how God may use each of our experiences to glorify him.

Without Jesus, without hope. With Jesus, with hope.

I hope this post has been encouraging! Be sure to add me on social media and share my blog with your friends! Thanks!

                       

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