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Lesson # Matt. 21:20-22
Study Material - Matt. 21:20-22
You must be in fellowship prior to your Bible study, so that the spiritual information you receive can become a source, of blessing to your soul and produce spiritual growth.
20 And [kai] when the disciples [mathetes] saw [eido] it, they marvelled [thaumazo] , saying [lego] , How [pos] soon [parachrema] is the fig tree [suke] withered away [xeraino] !
21 Jesus [Iesous] answered [apokrinomai] and [de] said [epo] unto them [autos] , Verily [amen] I say [lego] unto you [humin] , If [ean] ye have [echo] faith [pistis] , and [kai] doubt [diakrino] not [me] , ye shall [poieo] not [ou] only [monon] do [poieo] this [monon] which is done to the fig tree [suke] , but [alla] also if [kan] ye shall say [epo] unto this [touto] mountain [oros] , Be thou removed [airo] , and [kai] be thou cast [ballo] into [eis] the sea [thalassa] ; it shall be done [ginomai] .
22 And [kai] all things [pas] , whatsoever [an] [hosos] ye shall ask [aiteo] in [en] prayer [proseuche] , believing [pisteuo] , ye shall receive [lambano] . KJV-Interlinear
20 And seeing this, the disciples marveled, saying, 'How did the fig tree wither at once?' 21 And Jesus answered and said to them, 'Truly I say to you, if you have faith, and do not doubt, you shall not only do what was done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, 'Be taken up and cast into the sea,' it shall happen. 22 'And all things you ask in prayer, believing, you shall receive.' NAS
God builds up His church based on faith, not on better ideas, not on better programs, not on better methods, for these are all inventions of mankind.
A tree with leaves and no fruit, when its intended purpose of existing is the production of fruit, is representative of a religious front with no spiritual reality. It is dysfunctional, phony, false, and leads to nothing more than misery and failure in the spiritual life.
God reveals His promises and power only through faith, through persistent prayer, and consistency with His will and purpose. Requests with no purpose or meaning (spectacular or otherwise useless feats) are ignored by God. Requests in prayer which are not in accordance with Gods will and purpose are denied.
God does not care whether your life results in your death or life, in success or failure, in riches or poverty. These are all details of life which pertain only to this life and go no further. Faith however goes on forever and results not in your glory or credit, but in the glory and credit of God only. Faith is the foundation which you should be striving for, 1 Cor. 4:2. The details of life are irrelevant, Rom. 14:8.
If you approach God with wrong motives, then you will be ignored, Jas. 4:3
However, if you approach God in faith, and in a manner consistent with His purpose and will, then there is nothing that can stand in your way, Jn. 14:13-14, 'Whatever you ask ... in My name.'
Typical example. You wish for spiritual growth, you desire it, you persist in striving for spiritual growth, then you will be granted spiritual growth. Why? Because your desire is not frivolous, not spontaneous, but persistent, consistent, and you do not falter when faced with Gods challenges to your old pattern of thinking.
If however, you do come up against something in a Bible study with which you do not like, become offended by, run away from, because it conflicts with your comfort zone of life, then by your own actions and attitude, you are defeated. God will permit you to go negative. He will never coerce you to comply with His standards.
God will certainly train you in the manner in which you need to live your life in the form of discipline in varying degrees, but then a great deal of discipline on believers is self inflicted. Again, another example. You are hard nosed concerning some pattern of life and you reject Gods warnings against such patterns. You will end up with problems either medically, socially, your reputation will suffer, you might incur a criminal record for your continued behavior, you might encounter many failing relationships, and so forth. There is no need for Gods direct discipline when you do it to yourself so well.
When out of fellowship, when out of the will of God, when outside of the purpose of God, you will always face disappointment when offering prayers to God. You will be ignored.
However, when in fellowship, when in a consistent mode of Bible study and spiritual growth, when inside of Gods will and purpose for history in general and for your life specifically, then you will be witness to Gods awesome and unimaginable power.
If your thoughts are not His thoughts - you lose. When your thoughts are His thoughts, then you become a winner. The spiritual life is designed around the content of the soul, not around the size of ones talent, looks, or balance sheet. The very poor, the very disabled can be winners in their spiritual life and in eternity by simply being positive toward God and pursuing Him with a fervor.
Those who do pursue God, will overcome any and all obstacles (in their spiritual life), whether the small (fig tree) or great (mountains). God does not move mountains for the mere spectacular show of it. If there is no purpose in a thing, then it is not done.
So now I'll demonstrate to you the death of the fig tree and the movement of a mountain. Are you ready?
If you are disinterested in Bible study, or somewhat superficial, or looking for a Bible study that will fit in with your views of life, then you are that fig tree. Look in the mirror and see your very own death (in progress). Of course if you are that fig tree then you are probably not reading this study, or won't be for very much longer (you'll bounce from study to study), - you're dead! You'll never find what you are looking for, because it does not exist.
If however, you are very much interested in Bible study, if you do not become offended by vocabulary, by superficial conflicts in your life, by conflicts with your personal views, are open minded and willing to change yourself, are persistent, consistent, and otherwise have the attitude that God is smarter than you and, therefore there is something to learn from Him, then you are potentially that mountain so moved.
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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