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"Let us reason together…" Isaiah 1:18

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Awaken the Wonder: The Holy Spirit at Work, part 2

We are asking God to Awaken the Wonder of the Holy Spirit in us while working.

To sculpt a Bible based understanding and definition of work we consider Genesis 1 and 2.

  • The Bible opens with the revelation of God at work in bringing creation into being.
  • God creates Adam to join Him in making the whole earth as glorious as the Garden of Eden.
  • God creates Eve to join Himself and Adam in making the whole earth Eden-like (Edenic).
  • Adam and Eve are to have children for partnership with them and God in doing God’s work in the world.

We are born to partner with God in His work.

This partnership is hindered by Adam and Eve’s disobedience.

Adam and Eve’s partnership with God and His work is well established prior to their disobedience.

Eve’s Assignments                                          Results of Eve’s Sin

  • Be fruitful and multiply                    Pain when being fruitful and multiplying
  • Partner with and help Adam           Difficulty in the relationship with Adam

Adam’s Assignments                                      Results of Adam’s Sin

  • Work and keep the Garden              Banished from the Garden
  • Work and keep the Garden             Working the Garden soil would be painful
  • Lead the partnership with Eve        Difficulty in the relationship with Eve

Adam and Eve’s sin made their assignments more painful and difficult, but in God’s grace, they still have their assignments.

The Christian’s assignments are grouped (like a three-legged stool) into three movements:

  1. The movements of the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20). I am assigned to go and make disciples.
  2. The movements of the Great Commandment (Matthew 22:37-38). I am assigned to love God and people.
  3. The movements of the Great Creation Calling (Genesis 1:26-28). I am assigned to partner with God in His work.

All tasks man undertakes in God’s world can be seen in relationship to that original commission. Some jobs deal directly with plants and animals. Other jobs enable the stewardship of land and life. All jobs relate to those great tasks. The making of roads and markets enables us to subdue the earth and exercise dominion over the animals. The tasks related to helping other humans to flourish intellectually and spiritually enable people to deal with the land and living creatures. Arguably every righteous task in the world— from that of the farmer or rancher to that of the engineer, the software developer, or the nuclear physicist, from that of the ditch digger to the physician (or veterinarian), from the coach to the pastor, the zookeeper to the politician, the sergeant to the mailman— every task in the world can be seen in relationship to the subjection of the earth and the exercise of dominion over the animal kingdom.  Hamilton Jr., James M.. Work and Our Labor in the Lord (Short Studies in Biblical Theology) (p. 22). Crossway. Kindle Edition.

Even though Adam and Eve’s family assignments would be painful and their relationships difficult, in keeping God’s covenant with Abraham (Abrahamic Covenant) they could know the blessings of God on all of their assignments.

The assignments are more difficult and painful, yet God’s abundant blessings are promised for covenant keepers.  Deuteronomy 28:1-14

We were banished from the Garden        Blessed in city and country  (28:3)

Being fruitful is painful and difficult      The fruit of your womb will be blessed (4)

The ground will be difficult to cultivate   Your basket will be blessed (5)

We can’t enter the Garden of Eden        You will be blessed everywhere you go (6)

Your work will be very difficult and painful    Blessing on everything you put your hand to (28:8)

Someone may say, “But we are not in the Abrahamic Covenant,” we are in the New Covenant written in Jesus’ blood.

Consider what the Apostle Paul writes regarding how much more glorious the New Covenant is than the former covenants.  2 Corinthians 3:7-11

Now if the ministry that brought death, which was engraved in letters on stone, came with glory, so that the Israelites could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of its glory, transitory though it was, will not the ministry of the Spirit be even more glorious? If the ministry that brought condemnation was glorious, how much more glorious is the ministry that brings righteousness! 10 For what was glorious has no glory now in comparison with the surpassing glory. 11 And if what was transitory came with glory, how much greater is the glory of that which lasts!

PARTNERING WITH GOD DECLARATION

This week partnering with God in His work may be difficult and painful, YET God’s favor is upon me and everything I put my hand to is blessed.

MCA LIFE GROUP STUDY NOTES

Listen – My Story

  • Do you recall a work assignment that was virtually impossible without the direct help of the Holy Spirit?
  • Do you see your family as partners together with you in God’s work? In what ways?

Learn – Digging Deeper

  1. The assignments for God’s partners are sometimes painful and difficult. Have you experienced, like Adam and Eve, difficulty between you and your spouse (family)? Knowing you and your spouse (family) are intended to work together with God, what priority should you place on strengthening your marriage and family relationships?

 

  1. To be productive and effective in the Great Commission, Great Commandment, and Great Creation, what do you need the Holy Spirit to do in you?

 

  1. Read Deuteronomy 28:1-14. Have you experienced the blessings in your work God promised to these covenant keepers?

Life – Taking it Home

  1. What could you do this week to strengthen the relationship with your spouse and family to greatly enhance your partnership in God’s work?
  2. Will you look for various ways this week’s work is partnership with God?

Lift – Prayer

  • Please pray for each person’s spouse and/or family relationships. Specifically pray that the partnership will further the work of God in the world today.
  • Please pray for those people with whom you do God’s work. (Parents, don’t forget parenting is part of your work too)
  • Pray for God’s grace and strength to help you fast and pray during our Lenten fasting and prayer.

 

Posted on 10th February 2018 in Awaken the Wonder, Weekend Talks  •  Comments are off for this post

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