Category Archives: Teachings

Teachings

Clear Focus, Part 5: Love God (#962)

Clear Focus, Part 5: Love God (#962)

Well, welcome everybody. Here we’re going to continue our series on having a clear focus, which we want to have for this great year in 2019. We want to know what to focus on, so our brains don’t get more scattered than normal. And the last couple of sessions have focused on the love of God. One session we talked about how God loves us, another session we talked about how we should love others, and the focus today will be on the importance of us loving God. And I just remember so many times in my life just sitting there, by myself with nothing going on, and how happy I was just because I knew how much I loved God and He really loved me. And that’s really about all that mattered, because there are many other things in life besides that, but if you have that as your foundation: that you really love God and that you know He really loves you, you can get through about anything. Because so many other things in life are going to change, so many other things in life you have no control over. You know, like look at all the great political fights going on in our nation and around the world; we can have opinions on it, but we really have no control over it. So why let myself get so upset about it, because if the politics go one way or the other, I’m just going to be miserable. And, whenever any of us listen to the news, some things we’re happy about, some things we’re mad about, but we can’t do anything about it. So, we might as well be glad that God really loves us and we can really love God. And if we have that as the basis of our lives, then everything else just fits.

I got a text from somebody this week from somebody that that is going through some challenges and just said: “I’m so angry” and then she said: “how do I forgive people?” And I just told her some very simple things: well, remember how God has forgiven you; remember that Jesus Christ gave his life and shed his blood for you; but most of all, pray that God will direct your paths, so you can move on with the rest of your life. Because what has happened in the past and what other people do, you really have no control over. Because there is always stuff in the past we don’t like and there’s always people doing things we don’t like. That’s life. But, we can certainly pray that those thing will work out, but we have no control over them. So, if I decide that I’m going to have a miserable day because someone is doing something don’t like, or because something happened in the past I don’t like, I’m just going to be miserable. But if I decide that God loves me and I can love God and that is the foundation of my life, that’s always with me and nobody can take that away. I can chose to let it go out of my life, if I don’t want to focus on loving God, and I don’t want to focus on how much he loves me, but nobody can take that away.

There are a lot of other things people can take away; I’ve had jobs where the boss took it away, transferred me to a different project, laid me off, gave somebody else my job. We’ve all had that kind of thing. Or, there is a person you really like doing something with and then one day they decide that they don’t want to do that with you anymore. We’ll, that’s over. And you can get all mad about it, but it is over. So you can decide that: I’m miserable because of what that person did, or you can say: “so what, God will provide something else for me.” Look at Elijah when God told him to go tell the king, king Ahab that it wasn’t going to rain. And Ahad sent the whole army after him. We’ll God sent him out to the wilderness, by a brook; and He had the ravens cater his food for, I don’t know how long it was, for weeks of months. But then the brook ran dry, and the ravens didn’t bring food. So, what’s he going to do? He didn’t have to give up; God told him to go find that widow woman in Sidon. He went there and they had a little, a very small portion of meal, and they managed to eat off of it. He, the woman and her son for many days. God came through.

And there is always things changing in life. And obviously we want to try very hard to try to get things to go the way we want to in life and sometimes we can and a lot of times we can’t. But, what we can do is we can always love God. And we can know God always Loves us. So, that is what we’re going to have a very clear focus on today and in the weeks ahead of loving God. So, let’s start in Deuteronomy, Deuteronomy chapter six…

As taught by Bruce Mahone, 20190210.  All rights reserved.

Verse Listing and Notes

Deuteronomy 6:4-5           Love the Lord thy God

Deuteronomy 7:7-9           Them that love him

Deuteronomy 10:12-16     Love him and serve

Deuteronomy 11:1-25       Love the Lord

Deuteronomy. 30:15-20    Life and good

Joshua 22:1-5                       Be diligent to love the Lord your God

I Chronicles 10:1-14            How did Saul die?

Matthew 22:34-40               First and great commandment: love God

Romans 8:28                        All things work together for good

I John 5:2-3                           For this is the love of God

Teaching

Clear Focus, Part 5: Love God (#962)

Clear Focus, Part 4: Love Others (#961)

Clear Focus, Part 4: Love Others (#961)

Good morning. We’re going to continue this series we’ve done for the end of 2018 and the beginning of 2019 on what we call clear focus; what should we focus on?  There are so many things in life, so many topics in the scriptures, so many things going on in society, so many things in each of our individual lives; sometimes we have a hard time figuring out where we should put our attention. So, to help with that, we have a series of teachings we’re part way through, and we’ll continue for a number of more sessions, called Clear Focus. Where God tells us specific things to focus on. And last week we focused on the topic that God loves us and we read many wonderful scriptures talking about God’s tremendous love and care for us and realizing that is always there. Other things may come and go in life, hopefully we want the good things to stay and the bad things to go, but no matter what we do things change in life. And, sometimes we can do something to help it sometimes we can’t. But, we always know that God loves us; that is a constant in our lives that we should focus on. And I know I’ve had a great couple of weeks thinking about that, during the day as I pray, thinking about life, just remembering just how much God loves us. Now, today we’re going to sort of look at the other side of the same coin, on the importance to us to love others. As you know when the Pharisees challenged Jesus Christ about what was the most important law in the Old Testament law, he said that simply ‘Love God and love your neighbor.’ Those were the two focuses. And last time we read about God loving us, now we’re going to talk about how we should love others. And this is such a great point in life. I can just think of so many times in my life where this has been critical. I remember I had a job once where the office politics were just killing me. Everybody was making my life difficult, and I just wanted to go screaming down the hall the boss and make noise and cause a raucous, but instead I just prayed and asked God what to do and He just said: “walk in love.” So instead of spending all day being mad at my coworkers and my supervisors, I just decided to be a kind as I could to everybody. And I don’t even remember what the problem was at work, but whatever it was it went away in like two days. It had been bugging me for weeks. And that still happens to me today, I read the Bible in the morning and I pray for a lot of people; so many times I’m praying for someone and God just says: “love them.” Love them, you know it’s not that I have to do some big complicated thing, I just have to walk in love. And it is such a big part of life. The more we can just walk in love; that just solves so many things. There is a verse that I don’t think is in the list of verse we are going to read today, but it says somewhere in I think the epistles it says ‘love covers a multitude of sins,’ it really does. You can do all kinds of things wrong and we all do, we are not perfect, but when we walk in love; that love just covers a multitude of sins. People don’t worry so much about this, that, and the other thing if they know that they are loved. And, it is just the greatest thing in the world. So, there are many, many things that we’ll focus on as we go through these sessions in the weeks to come. But, knowing that God loves you and knowing that you should love others are two very big ones. So, we’ll start in Proverbs 15…

As taught by Bruce Mahone, 20190127.  All Rights Reserved.

Verse Listing and Notes

Proverbs 15:17          Better is a dinner of herbs than a stalled ox

Proverbs 17:9            He that covereth a transgression seeketh love

Proverbs 17:17          A friend loveth at all times

Matthew 5:43-46       Bless them that curse you

Matthew 18:21-22     Forgive seventy times seven

Matthew 22:37-40     Love thy neighbor as thyself

Mark 12:28-34            More than all whole burnt offerings

Luke 6:27-38               Be ye therefore mericful, as your Father also

Luke 7:36-50               To whom little is forgiven, loveth little

John 13:34-35             By this shall all know that ye are my disciples

John 15:9-13 (-19)      If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love – greater love hath no man than that he lay down his life for his friends

Teaching

Clear Focus, Part 4: Love Others (#961)

Clear Focus, Part 3: God Loves Us (#960)

Clear Focus, Part 3: God Loves Us (#960)

God bless you, wonderful saints. We’re here again for another wonderful session in God’s word. I may be teaching, but obviously what we are focusing on is God and His word; I’m just the guy reading it to you and making a few comments. God’s word is where the power and the strength lies.

We started in December on a new topic called: “Clear Focus.” We have to know where to focus our thoughts, there are so many things to think about everyday. Just think about it, tomorrow is a new day; some people are going to school, some people are going to work, some people are working at home, some people just have a big long to-do list that takes them all over the place. Everybody’s got a little bit different situation, but tomorrow’s a new week and the way of the world and our adversary is to get us to focus on many negative things that tend to get us negative, perhaps scared, but God wants us to focus on Him and His ability to take care of us. We’ve already had a few sessions on having a clear focus and we’ll have several more where we’ll focus on different aspects of what God’s word wants us to think about. And today we have a very, very, simple, wonderful focus that’s at the basis of really everything we do, which is acknowledging that God loves us. And that’s very important to focus on, because in the days ahead you will be around people that don’t love you very much. It could be that they’re just neutral and don’t care and don’t want to help you, it could be they’re actively working against you, we run into both of those things from time to time. But, we want to focus on how much God loves us, and it is good to remember that. So, when you’re in one of those situations where perhaps the people around you aren’t quite as nice as you’d like, you can remember, and at least focus on God’s love.

Because He always loves you. People are going to come and go; sometimes you’ll be surrounded by wonderful people that love you and take care of you, sometimes you’ll be surrounded by people that are just neutral, they don’t care about you one way or another and may ignore you; sometimes you’ll be around people actively antagonistic towards you. We will have all three happen to us. It depends on the week and the day and who you are and who you are around; its not always going to be consistent, but all three of those will happen. But the great thing is that no matter whether you’re surrounded constantly by people that love you, which is the best. Or constantly surrounded by people who hate you, which is the worst. Or like most people where its somewhere in between; some people are very kind and helpful, some people ignore you, other people are somewhat antagonistic. It doesn’t matter, because God loves you and He’s always there. Enjoy it when people love you and help you, and when they don’t, just realize, God is still there and He still loves you and He will help you though whatever challenges you might have.

So, we know this, we’ve read this, but we tend to forget it sometimes and our minds get dragged off to focus on other things in this world that aren’t as positive and uplifting, which is why we’re going to read several scriptures today about God’s love for us. Let’s start with a very favorite one we read all the time in Deuteronomy; Deuteronomy chapter seven…

As taught by Bruce Mahone, 20190113.  All rights reserved.

Verse Listing and Notes

Deuteronomy 7:8        God’s motives

Deuteronomy 23:5      God turned the curse (of Balaam) into a blessing, because He loved

Psalms 13:5-6               I have trusted in thy steadfast love

Psalms 34:8-10             O taste and see that the Lord is good; they that seek the Lord shall not lack any good thing —

Psalms 36:7-9               How excellent (precious) is thy lovingkindness

Psalms 92:1-2               To shew forth (declare) thy lovingkindness in the morning

Psalms 119:165            Great peace have they which love thy law, and nothing shall offend

Jeremiah 9:23, 24         He knoweth the Lord which exercises lovingkindness (vs 24)

Jeremiah 31:3                With lovingkindness He drew us.

Romans 8:28                 All things work together for good

Romans 8:38, 39           Nothing can separate us

Ephesians 1:4-6             Holy and without blame, lovely and acceptable

I Thessalonians 4:9-12  You are taught of God to love one another (vs. 11 – aspire to lead a quiet life, aspire to live quietly, let it be a point of honor with you to keep calm)

Teaching

Clear Focus, Part 3: God Loves Us (#960)

 

Clear Focus, Part 2 (#959)

Clear Focus, Part 2 (#959)

We’re going to continue our series here on Clear Focus, what to focus on. And, this is part two and as this is our last teaching in 2018, since it is December 30th, I hope it gives us a vision of how to look to God in the coming year. Because we all have different challenges this year, everybody has projects and goals and challenges, and somethings easy and fun and somethings more challenging and difficult; that’s just part of living. And, no matter what 2019 looks like for you, one of the things that will help you prosper in 2019 and do well is focusing on God and His word and His deliverance, instead of focusing on the circumstances and the problems. You have to focus on the circumstances and the problems to the point where you deal with them the best you can, but you don’t want to fixate on them and have them be the only thing you think about. You need to continue to look to God and trust him. So here we go, we’ll start in second Kings chapter six…

As taught by Bruce Mahone, 20181230. All rights reserved.

Verse Listing and Notes

II Kings 6:8-23                      Chariots of fire

Psalms 23 (esp vss 3-4)      I will fear no evil

Isaiah 55:8-11                      God’s thoughts are not our thoughts

II Corinthians 4:(1-)18         Look not at those things which are seen

Romans 11:33                      Depth of wisdom & knowledge

I Corinthians 1:25                Weakness of God stronger than men

Colossians 3:1-3                   Seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth (vs. 1)

Hebrews 11:1-3                    Things which are seen were not made of things which do appear
Hebrews 11:7                        Warned of things not seen (e.g. rain)
Hebrews 11:8-14                  He looked for a city
Hebrews 11:39-40                Something better for us
Hebrews 12:1-4                    Looking unto Jesus

I John 3:1,2                            As he is

Teaching

Clear Focus, Part 2 (#959)

Clear Focus, Part 1 (#958)

Clear Focus, Part 1 (#958)

Well, we are going to start a new series of teachings that will last a number of sessions on having a clear focus in life. There are so many things in life going on that it is sometimes hard to know what to focus on. Well, we will read about many things in God’s word, that if we focus on them, our lives will be a little better. So, we will try very hard to direct our focus toward the things God would have us focus on. Because there are many things in life you focus on and they don’t do you any good. Other things you focus on and you have a much happier life, and that is what we’ll talk about. So, in part one of this series that I’m going to call a clear focus, we’ll go to Psalm 119…

As taught by Bruce Mahone, 20181216.  All rights reserved.

Verse Listing and Notes

Introduction

Psalms 119:11   Thy word have I hid in mine heart

What part of God’s Word? – Depends on what you need

Full of fear?

Psalms 34:8       I sought the Lord, and He heard me, and delivered me

Past Shortcomings:

Philippians 3:13-16 Forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forth unto those which are before (vs 13)

Present Concerns:

Proverbs 3:5-6     In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths

Future:

I Peter 1:3-5          Begotten us again unto a lively hope be the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead – vs. 3

God Does Not Care

Romans 8:35-39 Nothing can separate us from the love of God

Summary – Stay With It

Isaiah 26:3-4        Perfect peace whose mind is stayed (steadfast, steady)

Psalms 119:165   Great peace have they which love thy law, and nothing shall offend them

Teaching

Clear Focus, Part 1 (#958)

 

God’s Care: Resilience Part 11 – Determination cont. (#957)

God’s Care: Resilience Part 11 – Determination cont. (#957)

Good morning. We’re going to continue our series on God’s care, specifically focusing on the resilience we have to bounce back from tough situations. And the determination we have to have to be able to be resilient and enjoy God’s care. We’re going to start here in first Samuel chapter eight…

As taught by Bruce Mahone, 20181202.  All rights reserved.

Verse Listing and Notes

I Samuel 8                     Israel wanted a king
[Saul chosen by God and anointed by Samuel]

I Samuel 10:17-25       Saul presented to Israel
[Saul leads Israelites to victory against Ammonites]

I Samuel 12                   Serve the Lord with all your heart (vs. 20)

Ephesians 1:1-4           Holy and without blame before him in love

Teaching

God’s Care: Resilience Part 11, Determination cont. (#957)

 

God’s Care: Resilience, Part 10 – Determination, cont. (#956)

God’s Care: Resilience, Part 10 – Determination, cont. (#956)

Good morning. We’ve been doing a series for many months on how much God cares for us. As you know. And we sort of took a subset of that, on because He cares for us He helps us be resilient, so we can bounce back from challenges. Because we all have challenges, sometimes they are little, tiny challenges; sometimes they’re huge, life-changing events. But, we have to be resilient and be able and bounce back from them. I’m reminded of something…I think Peter, you said this to me in a text this week: “The future is as bright as the promises of God.” And that’s true. You always look at what you got, and the problem is people will often look and see: well I’m short of this and I’m short of that, and this is going wrong and therefore, my next year’s going to be a mess. Well, not as long as we have the promises of God. Because I might be very short of something I’d like to have or need more of, but as long as I have God’s promises, I won’t be forsaken. And neither will you. So resilience is a big deal, and then we took a subset of resilience last week, and talked about determination. And we’re going to continue on that theme today. You may remember that one of the records we read about last week was about Hannah, Samuel’s mother. She was so determined to have a son that she just kept praying, and praying, and ultimately ended getting pregnant and having a son named Samuel, who she took to Eli the priest to serve the Lord. And we’ll read a little bit about that. And I better switch from my song book to my Bible, otherwise I won’t find First Samuel chapter two…

As taught by Bruce Mahone 20181118.  All Rights Reserved.

Verse Listing and Notes

I Samuel 2:12-36        Samuel’s training by Eli

Ex. 29:31-34                Seethe (boil) the offering, then priests eat

Lev. 3:12-17                Burn the fat

I Samuel 3                   Samuel’s training by God

I Samuel 7                   Samuel led Israel to victory by God

Teaching

God’s Care: Resilience, Part 10 – Determination, cont. (#956)

God’s Care: Resilience, Part 9 – Determination (#955)

God’s Care: Resilience, Part 9 – Determination (#955)

Good morning! We’re going to continue today, and oh by the way, any of you on the phone if it is possible for you to mute your phone by hitting start six (*6) or a mute button, go ahead, but if not, try not to spill your coffee and use a cuss word — OK. So here we are this morning, we’re going to continue our series on resilience. And part nine of it today is in Determination; because to be resilient, you have to be determined to move on the next level of your life, or your project, or whatever it is. We all know that if you sort of sit back and let things happen in life, they sometimes will go the way you want and sometimes they won’t. But if you set a course for your life and get determined to go there, now you can begin to make some progress in the direction you want to go. Now if you don’t care what direction you go in, it doesn’t matter, you can just go wherever life takes you. And you have ever right to do that. But if you have a certain direction you’d like to see your life go, its going to take some determination for that to occur. And you have to focus, and you have to take actions and pray, and ask God to help you to go in that direction you want to go. And there are other times in life where you have no idea what direction is good for you, so rather than get worried about it, you just move along through life and enjoy it, and trust God and see what doors He opens. But even then, its still wonderful to pray with great determination that God will bless you. Like for instance, you might have a financial need and you may not know what the best answer for meeting that financial need is. So you just pray that God will supply your needs, and then see what doors He opens. So you’re still determined to trust God and have that financial need taken care of, you just may not know how to do it. But, in other times in life, you may know for a lot of reasons; whether God told you or its just something you’ve been working on for ages and have a little progress, so you want to take care of your financial needs in a certain manner. Well, then you have to be determined to try to make that happen. And if that’s the case, work very hard to make that happen, but if along the way, God opens another door, where God tells you, you should be moving a different direction to have that need taken care of, then you obviously want to adapt. But either way, you need to be determined. Determined to either accomplish a specific thing or determined to just trust God that He’ll come through for you, regardless. And we’re going to start with the record in first Samuel chapter one of Hannah…

As taught by Bruce Mahone, 20181111.  All rights reserved.

Verse Listing and Notes

I Samuel 1-2:11   Hannah prayed and received a son

Luke 18:1-8          Men ought everywhere to pray and not faint

II Cor. 4:1(-7,16)   Having this ministry, we faint not

Gal. 6:9                  We shall reap, if we faint not

Eph. 3:13               Faint not at tribulation

Heb. 12:1-4 (5ff)   Lest ye faint

Luke 17:6              Mustard Seed

Teaching

God’s Care: Resilience, Part 9 – Determination (#955)

God’s Care: Resilience, Part 8 – Nothing (#954)

God’s Care: Resilience, Part 8 – Nothing (#954)

Good morning! We’re going to continue our series on God’s Care, specifically focusing on the resilience we have because God cares for us. And last time we focused on “anything,” becuase God can do anything we need. And now we are going to look at the opposite of it, we’re going to look at the word: “nothing.” And just like He can do anything for us, the opposite of that is nothing can hinder us, nothing can stop us, there is nothing too hard for God. So it will be fun looking through some of these records. Let’s start here in II Chronicles Chapter 14…

As taught by Bruce Mahone, 20181021.  All rights reserved.

Verse Listing and Notes

II Chronicles 14:1-15        It is nothing with thee to help, whether with many, or with few

Psalms 119:165                Great peace have they which love thy law, and nothing shall offend them (can make them stumble)

Ecclesiastes 2:24              There is nothing better than … his soul enjoy good in all his labour

Mark 8:1-9                         Jesus Christ had compassion on the multitude because they had nothing to eat (8:2)

John 16:23-24                    In that day ye shall ask me nothing…Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you.

Romans 8:38-39               Nothing can separate us from the love of Christ!

I Corinthians 4:1-5           Required in stewards to be found faithful (vs. 4 – nothing of which I am guilty)

Philippians 1:27-30          In nothing terrified by your adversaries

Philippians 2:1-5              Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory

 Philippians 3:13-16         Forgetting (caring nothing about) those things which are behind and reaching forth unto those which are before (vs 13)

Philippians 4:4-9              Be careful for nothing

I Thessalonians 4:9-12    That ye may have lack of nothing

I Timothy 6:1-12               Knowing nothing (vs. 4)

We brought nothing into this world (vs. 7)

James 1:2-8                       Perfect and entire, wanting nothing (vs. 4)

Let him ask in faith, nothing wavering (vs. 6)

Teaching

God’s Care: Resilience, Part 8 – Nothing (#954)

God’s Care: Resilience, Part 7 – Anything (#953)

God’s Care: Resilience, Part 7 – Anything (#953)

Today we’re going to continue our series on God’s care for us with a focus on the resilience we can have. That we can bounce back from any hardship, any difficulty, any setback in life, and move on and be victorious. We’ve looked at this topic of resilience from many approaches and today we’re going to focus on the word: “anything.” Because, we’ve talked about not limiting God and we all have a tendency, I think at times, to think that whatever is we might need is too hard for God or He wouldn’t want to do it for us, or something like that. Whereas in reality, God is totally unlimited in His ability to take care of us. Really, the only thing that limits God is people. We may not chose to pray and believe His promises or we may want something from somebody else that they’re not willing to help us with. So, God may not be able to help us in the way we want if it depends on somebody else. But God can find another way to take care of us. So we don’t limit God to one way of taking care of us, but we have to know He can take care of anything we might need, and if not one way, He’ll do it another way. So let’s start in Genesis 18:14.

As taught by Bruce Mahone, 20181007.  All rights reserved.

Verse Listing and Notes

Genesis 18:14            Is anything too hard for the Lord?

Isaiah 55:8-12            God’s ways are higher than our ways

Matthew 6:24-34       We are anxious for nothing, knowing that God is aware of our every need

Matthew 18:18-20     If two of you shall agree…anything they ask, it shall be done

Romans 13:8-10        Owe no man anything, but to love one another

Ephesians 3:20          Above all we can ask or think

Philippians 3:13-16   If in anything ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you

Philippians 4:4-9       Be anxious for nothing (moderation – gentleness, patience)

Alternate translation: “Don’t worry over anything whatever; tell God every detail of your needs in earnest and thankful prayer, and the peace of God, which transcends human understanding, will keep constant guard over your hearts and minds as they rest in Christ Jesus” – JB Phillips

Philippians 4:6-7       6: Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.

7: If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. – NLT

Hebrews 4:15-16       Let us come boldly unto the throne of grace

I John 5:13-15             This is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask anything according to his will, he heareth us (vs. 14)

Teaching

God’s Care: Resilience, Part 7 – Anything (#953)