Believing God For Big Things [1-9-11]


BELIEVING GOD FOR BIG THINGS

[1-9-11]

Acts 12:5-11) [GNB] So Peter was kept in jail, but the people of the church were praying earnestly to God for him.

6) The night before Herod was going to bring him out to the people, Peter was sleeping between two guards. He was tied with two chains, and there were guards on duty at the prison gate.

7) Suddenly an angel of the Lord stood there, and a light shone in the cell. The angel shook Peter by the shoulder, woke him up, and said, “Hurry! Get up!” At once the chains fell off Peter’s hands.

8) Then the angel said, “Tighten your belt and put on your sandals.” Peter did so, and the angel said, “Put your cloak around you and come with me.”

9) Peter followed him out of the prison, not knowing, however, if what the angel was doing was real; he thought he was seeing a vision.

10) They passed by the first guard station and then the second, and came at last to the iron gate that opens into the city. The gate opened for them by itself, and they went out. They walked down a street, and suddenly the angel left Peter.

11) Then Peter realized what had happened to him, and said, “Now I know that it is really true! The Lord sent his angel to rescue me from Herod’s power and from everything the Jewish people expected to happen.”

QUESTION: What supernatural event took place here?

ANSWER: An angel of the Lord broke Peter out of jail.

QUESTION: What was going on somewhere else at this time?

ANSWER: The church was praying for Peter.

QUESTION: Was God faithful to answer the prayers of His people?

ANSWER: Yes! God miraculously set Peter free from the prison.

QUESTION: Does God still miraculously set people free?

ANSWER: Absolutely! God never changes!

Malachi 3:6) “I am the LORD, and I do not change. And so you, the descendants of Jacob, are not yet completely lost.”

ActS 16:22-33) [GNB] And the crowd joined in the attack against Paul and Silas. Then the officials tore the clothes off Paul and Silas and ordered them to be whipped.

23) After a severe beating, they were thrown into jail, and the jailer was ordered to lock them up tight.

24) Upon receiving this order, the jailer threw them into the inner cell and fastened their feet between heavy blocks of wood.

25) About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them.

26) Suddenly there was a violent earthquake, which shook the prison to its foundations. At once all the doors opened, and the chains fell off all the prisoners.

27) The jailer woke up, and when he saw the prison doors open, he thought that the prisoners had escaped; so he pulled out his sword and was about to kill himself.

28) But Paul shouted at the top of his voice, “Don’t harm yourself ! We are all here!”

29) The jailer called for a light, rushed in, and fell trembling at the feet of Paul and Silas.

30) Then he led them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”

31) They answered, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your family.”

32) Then they preached the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in the house.

33) At that very hour of the night the jailer took them and washed their wounds; and he and all his family were baptized at once.

QUESTION: What supernatural event took place here?

ANSWER: An angel of the Lord broke Paul and Silas out of jail.

QUESTION: What was going on in the prison cell at this time?

ANSWER: Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns loud enough at midnight for the other prisoners to hear them.

QUESTION: Was God faithful to Paul and Silas that evening?

ANSWER: Yes! God miraculously set them free from the prison.

Daniel 3:1,6, 12-18) [GNB] King Nebuchadnezzar had a gold statue made, ninety feet high and nine feet wide, and he had it set up in the plain of Dura in the province of Babylon.

6) “Anyone who does not bow down and worship will immediately be thrown into a blazing furnace.”

12) “There are some Jews whom you put in charge of the province of Babylon—Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego—who are disobeying Your Majesty’s orders. They do not worship your god or bow down to the statue you set up.”

13) At that, the king flew into a rage and ordered the three men to be brought before him.

14) He said to them, “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, is it true that you refuse to worship my god and to bow down to the gold statue I have set up?

15) Now then, as soon as you hear the sound of the trumpets, oboes, lyres, zithers, harps, and all the other instruments, bow down and worship the statue. If you do not, you will immediately be thrown into a blazing furnace. Do you think there is any god who can save you?”

16) Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego answered, “Your Majesty, we will not try to defend ourselves.

17) If the God whom we serve is able to save us from the blazing furnace and from your power, then he will.

18) But even if he doesn’t, Your Majesty may be sure that we will not worship your god, and we will not bow down to the gold statue that you have set up.”

QUESTION: What supernatural event took place here?

ANSWER: An angel of the Lord rescued Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego from the fiery furnace.

QUESTION: What did these three men refuse to do?

ANSWER: They refused to worship King Nebuchadnezzar’s idol.

QUESTION: Was God faithful to Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego that day?

ANSWER: Yes! He miraculously delivered them from that fiery furnace.

Some More Questions:

QUESTION: Was if God hadn’t delivered Peter? Would He have been unfaithful?

QUESTION: Was if God hadn’t delivered Paul? Would He have been unfaithful?

QUESTION: Was if God hadn’t delivered Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego? Would He have been unfaithful?

Hebrews 11:4, 5, 7, 8, 23, 33-34) [KJV] By faith Abel ——–.

5) By faith Enoch ——–.

7) By faith Noah ——–.

8) By faith Abraham ——–.

23) By faith Moses ——–.

33) Who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions,

34) Quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, waxed valiant in fight, turned to flight the armies of the aliens.

QUESTION: What made these individuals special?

ANSWER: They all pleased God by having faith in His promises, and special things were accomplished as a result.

Hebrews 11:35-38) [KJV] Women received their dead raised to life again: and others were tortured, not accepting deliverance; that they might obtain a better resurrection:

36) And others had trial of [cruel] mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover of bonds and imprisonment:

37) They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented;

38) (Of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in deserts, and [in] mountains, and [in] dens and caves of the earth.

QUESTION: Why were these individuals not rescued?

ANSWER: Sometimes God allows life to happen, and life isn’t often fair.

QUESTION: Were these individuals not named because they were less faithful?

Hebrews 11:39-40) [KJV] And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise:

40) God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect.

ANSWER: They were just as faithful as the others. What if God hadn’t rescued Peter, or Paul, or Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego? Would He have been less faithful?

A CLOSING NOTE: The emphasis of these stories is that we should be faithful to God always, and that we should leave the end result with Him.



Walk of Grace Chapel, Council Bluffs Church