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Katy

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  1. Q3. The vineyard owner worked hard to do everything right to prepare his place for a good crop of grapes. He made sure also that it had protection by growing a hedge around it , and he had a wall built around it also. He also built a watchtower and a wine press. Everything was ready to grow a good crop. He could do nothing more. However the fruit turned out to be bad, not as expected at all. In his disappointment the owner decided to break down the wall, and allow it to grow into a wasteland full of briers and thorns. These verses tell us about God’s attitude towards The Israelites, how He has chosen them and set them apart to Himself. He has done everything He could do for them, and yet they reject Him and disobey Him and totally turn away from him. So now God is taking His blessings away and leaving them to their own devices.
  2. Q2. What great words of hope to us all.God is going to establish His temple in Jerusalem, it will be seen by many people. The nations will flock to it. People will be eager to be taught about God and want to walk in His path. God Himself will be Judge and will listen and settle disputes. The people will take their weapons of war and fashion them into farm implements because there won’t be anymore wars. Everyone, whether Jew or Gentile will be the same, all united in loving and obeying Our God. There will be great Spiritual hunger and there will be peace across the world. Praise God as we look forward to this great time to come.
  3. Q1. The Israelites, God’s own people have walked away from their relationship with Him. They have decided or evolved into doing there own thing and not looking to God and His ways. They are committing sin because they are not walking with the Spirit. When Christian’s today do not act as though they are Children of God, they loose their way. They backslide and start to sin. They are not interested in keeping God’s laws. In verses 15 - 17 we are told the Israelites are guilty of their hands being full of blood, they are doing evil deeds, not doing what is right, in particular they are not looking after the oppressed, the fatherless, and the widows in their area. The Israelites are being unreasonable because, despite their suffering they still decide to persist in turning their backs on God and not obeying Him. God is prepared and willing to take them back and forgive them if they would just turn to Him and sincerely repent of their wrong doing. Their God is offering them forgiveness of sin “ Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be like wool.”v18. He is offering them all the good things that only He can provide for them. Eventually if they persevere they will spend eternity in His presence.
  4. Q 22. It would certainly appear that Solomon was a womaniser who lusted after women. It must have been a lonely existence, not taking time to really share his life with one wife in a meaningful way. He must have spent a lot of time thinking about woman and pursuing them, but not really giving himself time to get to know her before he was looking for the next wife. Each woman in his life must have felt insecure and used! The competition between all the women must have been enormous! Solomon can’t have had time to treat any of these women properly. All the time must have been spent on thinking about his next conquest. I don’t really know how a womaniser treats his children, but I imagine his mind is so preoccupied with women that he has little if any time for his children. He doesn’t care about their moral upbringing, and he is certainly a bad role model when it comes to teaching them how to treat women! In Genesis 2v24 we are told”That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.” God intended marriage of one man with one woman for life. As Christian’s this is what we must do, because God’s laws never change.
  5. Q21. Paul tells us that if we have wealth we are not to be arrogant! We must not flaunt our wealth before others. We must not depend on our wealth rather than on God. God will provide us with everything we need, and He wants us to enjoy the good things He gives us if we follow Him and depend on Him rather than on our wealth. God wants us to do good with our wealth, by helping those who are less well off than ourselves, in this way we will be laying up treasure in Heaven for the future. Wealth can have strange effects on people! The more they gather the more secure they become and sometimes their relationship with God becomes less importance. They become proud and arrogant. Feeling that they have achieved the pinnacle of life!
  6. Q20. When Jesus was on earth He spent His ministry helping people. Most of these people were poor and in need. Today we as Christian’s are God’s hands and feet. We must emulate His actions and give to the poor. This giving may be to people who are poor financially or it may be poor spiritually. It is directed in Scripture to help the poor by leaving some grain behind for the poor to glean.Leviticus 23 v22. Proverbs has many verses about giving to the poor, and helping them Proverbs 19v17, 22v9, 22v16. Everything we have comes from God , therefore we should be generous in giving some back. We are sometimes reluctant to give to people we meet on the street because we are not sure how genuine their need is. They may have an addiction which we could be helping to feed if we give them money. In this case it is wiser to offer to buy them a sandwich or something else and a cup of tea/ coffee. Then if they accept to go and buy it for them. I think the best way of giving to those in need is by giving on a regular basis to a Christian Organisation who are involved and helping those in need. Another way is to get involved in helping in a Charity shop which supports a children charity or other charities which help people. Another way is to get involved in a food bank or a homeless feeding station.
  7. Q19. Wisdom that comes from Heaven is first of all pure; then peace loving, considerate, submissive , full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. If we harbor bitter envy and selfish ambitions in our hearts these do not come from heaven but are earthly, unspiritual, and demonic. These are the differences between Godly wisdom and earthly wisdom. Jesus is the fount of all wisdom and knowledge, that is Godly wisdom and knowledge. This is the wisdom and knowledge that we need to be striving to learn and use in our lives. Jesus has it all , is the fount of all , so to gain this wisdom and knowledge we must go to Him and ask for wisdom as James tells us to do. We need to pray, study the word and pay attention to other maybe older Godly men and women who can teach us a lot by us listening and observing how they live their lives.
  8. Q. 18. The temple was built by Solomon to glorify God. Solomon then built a bigger structure for himself, this was the palace. For the protection and security of his people Solomon captured and fortified the towns around Jerusalem or towns that would be adjacent to a way leading to Jerusalem. He had also built the wall around Jerusalem. The towns he fortified included Grezer, Hazor, Megiddo, Hamath Zobah, Beth Horon, Baalath, and Tamar.
  9. Q15. God calls Solomon to a life of uprightness, with integrity of heart and obedience. This lifestyle calls for a total commitment to God and His ways every day of our lives. Our eyes must be focused on God and not worldly matters.Unfortunately we all have a sinful nature, despite us being saved by grace and we can easily slip back into old bad habits very easily if we are not totally dedicated to the ways of God. People around us can make life difficult for us by provoking us and ridiculing us for our beliefs. Work and family commitments can pull us off course if we are not on our guard. Satan will use whatever tactics he can to lead us away from God, as Scripture tells us he is like a roaring lion seeking out vulnerable people that he can devour, The opposite of integrity of heart is Simone who is slip shod in their approach to things in life and they will be the same towards the things of God. Eg. Constantly late for church, meetings, work. Lacks discipline when it comes to having a quiet time, easily distracted, misses quiet time often. Half heated about jobs to be done at home or in church.
  10. Q14. The cloud represented God’s glory. When the cloud was there it meant that God’s presence was with them. Although we don’t physically see the cloud in our day, we do know that when we make the decision to follow Jesus we are filled with the Holy Spirit , who stays with us always. He gives us power, the same power that was at work when Jesus rose from the dead. He also leads us and guides us, counsels us and comforts in time of trouble. He is slowly changing us so that we are becoming more and more like Jesus. We are temples of the Holy Spirit, because He lives in us all the time. We must nurture our relationship with the Holy Spirit so we are aware of His prompting and guiding us in life. We do this by daily reading the Scriptures, taking time to study, in prayer and in fellowship with likeminded believers.
  11. Q13. God is Omnipresent, this means He is everywhere. He is not confined to a certain place such as a temple. No place can contain or restrict God. It was important that the Israelites understood the concept of omnipresent, and not think that God was now confined to their temple. The temple was important for the Israelites to have a place to meet together and to focus on God. It was also the place where they offered sacrifices, the priests did it on behalf of the people. We can pray anywhere but God desires us to meet together for collective worship and praise and fellowship. We use our gifts to build others up, and to encourage each other, especially when times are tough.
  12. Q11. The Old Testament rituals of sacrifices were instituted by God, as a means of cleansing people from their sins. This could not take sin away completely so it had to be repeated over and over again. It was ineffective if it was not accompanied by true repentance for sin. All these rituals were only a temporary measure until the ultimate sacrifice was offered. This ultimate, perfect sacrifice was Our Lord and Saviour Jesus. He was crucified once for all to satisfy the wrath of God, for all our sins. Because Jesus was the only living perfect human being, he was the only one good enough to redeem us from certain death and an eternity in punishment, in hell. Because He was so perfect and the ultimate sacrifice, the old system of sacrifice was needed no longer. Praise God for sending His Son, thank you Jesus that you came.
  13. Q12. I think worship should cost us something sometimes, when things in life are going well, it is relatively easy to worship. Sometimes it just comes naturally. Then there are other times when we are tired, worried, disappointed, or maybe unable to concentrate, then it is a sacrifice to worship. We need discipline to make ourselves pray , study, go out to the prayer meeting, call to see our next door neighbour, when we do this it is a sacrifice and the sign of a true disciple. The most difficult sacrifice for me is trying to speak to others about Jesus. So often I just don’t know where to start! I find it hard to get past the first couple of sentences, unless I get a positive response, which seems quite rare. I enjoy visiting the elderly who are unable to get out anymore. If they are able to go out, I take them out for a drive and coffee/lunch. I enjoy supporting charities who are doing great work with poor children, giving them schooling, teaching them about Jesus, etc. I enjoy church and the teaching and singing with likeminded Christians. I enjoy study groups , exploring and learning from the Bible.
  14. Q10.I don’t think a church building is central to the mission of the church. Not every group of Christian’s have a church building but the work goes on and people come to know the love of God. However a church building does provide a sense of belonging and security. The Christians in the church may be paying a mortgage on the building but it will eventually belong to the church. If the church group are paying rent it will never belong to the church and there is no guarantee that the premises will be available indefinitely. In the past beautiful churches were built to honour God. They can be seen all over Europe. Many are in decline needing much money spent on them. Also we live in a more secular society who have little or no interest in God or the things of God. Many today have no interest in going into a church. Things have changed, church's tend to be buildings that are practical and may have multiple uses apart from church services ie children’s outreach clubs, meal preparation for the poor/ homeless, food banks. These ministries are all carried out for the Glory of God. So although churches today may be practical, multifunctional spaces, they can, I think bring much Glory to God. I am sure God would prefer to see money spent on looking after the poor, and teaching children about Him at club than the church building being opulent and ornate. That is as long as all who are involved are giving God all the Glory and spending time in His presence daily.
  15. Q9. I find this question difficult to answer because I am not really sure of my talents or gifts! I love the elderly and visit a few on a regular basis. These are ladies who are either ill or unable to get out. Others I take out for coffee. I help where I can in church, flowers, coffee, cleaning, children’s clubs. I try to get alongside people with problems and listen and encourage. So all that I do are basic tasks that I am able to do as I don’t have any outstanding skills or talents.
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