Author Dallas Willard tells us what it will cost us and what we will miss if we refuse Jesus’ invitation to follow him. The choices in the scripture are three: “the gods your ancestors served in the region beyond the River,” the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living, the third choice is to serve the Lord who has done so much for them. This project, in partnership with the China Christian Council, will open a door to making this modern, contemporary translation available throughout China. This is an extraordinary verse of Scripture, which deserves our prayerful consideration. Knowing "why" we're doing something is so key. As you heard earlier in the video about our Fund Raising Campaign Preserving our Past, Building Our Future and in the testimony from Ben Gregson, we are at another Defining Moment in our church’s history. Remembering why we keep our commitments – and the privilege it is to carry God's image in that regard – keeps us motivated to follow through. We are making a pretty safe assumption based on the corrupt culture of the day and the fact that it had probably not rained since creation (Genesis 2:5-6). As a result, the grace of God does three things for us: it has brought us salvation, it teaches us to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts, and it gives us hope (Titus 2:11-13). Your friends and culture do not have to agree with your commitment. 2And Joshua said to all the people, “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: Long ago your ancestors—Terah and his sons Abraham and Nahor—lived beyond the Euphrates and served other gods. [1] Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship, 40. https://brewsterbaptistchurch.org/audio/08102014.mp3, video about our Fund Raising Campaign Preserving our Past, Building Our Future. 5Then I sent Moses and Aaron, and I plagued Egypt with what I did in its midst; and afterwards I brought you out. In today’s scripture, Joshua is seeking to convey to the people that they are all part of a larger community, a community of faith, and being part of the community of faith requires commitment. Here are nearly 80 Inspiring Christian stories and over 40 other inspirational stories that you can share with your friends through emails, Facebook, or other social media. (1 Samuel 1:11, 24-28). Whole-heartedness, a complete heart for God (2 Chronicles 15:17, 16:9) 2. (Genesis 7 & Hebrews 11:7). Lord, I thank you that while our lives are ‘like the evening shadow’, you are eternal. Today is a good day to talk about the power of commitment since there was such an excellent illustration of commitment rolling by the church last Sunday morning. He blessed her for making a decision and following it all the way through totally and completely. In the Bible, commitment involves four aspects: 1. Only Jesus knows what decisions and partings will be demanded of us, what nets and people we may have to leave behind like the first disciples. It is also a good testimony if we release someone from a commitment to us and it cost us something to do so if we do it in a gracious way. I think we should also be gracious if we know someone's commitment to us is causing them hardship and we can let them out of the commitment. Keeping a commitment when socially and legally he didn't have to. There a times, like in this story, where our faith is challenged. Being a disciple of Jesus is not one component of our life; along with family and relationships, work, education, service and leisure. The following testimonies came from China, where Biblica’s Chinese Contemporary Bible (CCB) is now being published. It was definitely worth it to see the expressions and appreciation of the riders. God was and is faithful to the unfaithful, rebellious, doubting & wandering. That commitment was to pray each day. True Commitment - Prayer Jokes. God blessed Ruth for her devotion. Everyone who truly commits himself to the gospel finds his life expanding and his appreciation growing for all good things. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. Their being deceitful had no bearing upon whether or not Joshua kept his commitments even though doing so still had significant consequences. Romans 12:1. The point Joshua is making is – the gods beyond the Euphrates have done nothing for you, the gods the Amorites worship have done nothing for you, never forget all the Lord has done – count your many blessings as the old hymn says and make a commitment. DISCUSSION: What other biblical examples of commitment can you think of? (Matthew 25:34), and His commitment to us shows we can trust Him. You are absolutely right about keeping a commitment to something when we know it is what God would want regardless if we have been let out of it or not. “Chapter 19: Our Commitment to God,” Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Howard W. Hunter (2015), 242–53 “Chapter 19,” Teachings: Howard W. Hunter, 242–53 Chapter 19.  Subscribe to Struggle to Victory by Email or Subscribe in a reader. What is wrong I think is to withdraw without getting an agreement from someone to allow you to do so. Rating: +7 (from 7 votes) Let’s talk about commitments, commitments to some of the Christian disciplines. How you feel has nothing to do with whether or not you keep a commitment. In the 1976 Summer Olympics, Shun Fujimoto competed in … Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote, “Jesus asks nothing of us without giving us the strength to perform it. His parable: A certain man wanted to sell his house for $2,000. Whether you are struggling with a commitment to God, or commitment to the church, or dedication to your marriage, or commitment to serving others. If Joshua and Jesus were standing in front of you, looking you in the eye, asking you how committed you are – what would you say. Remember God’s presence often & draw strength from the knowledge that the One who calls & invites also strengthens & sustains. Find similar stories in Following God >> Stewardship. The pastor explained to them that in order to be accepted as members of the church, they would have to show their commitment to God by abstaining from sex for three weeks. (Daniel 6). Find encouragement to stay committed from our list of Bible verses below! When we choose to commit our selves to following Jesus, we truly don’t know where Jesus will lead us or what experiences we may have. Total commitment is the foundation of our relationship with God. What we know is that the person we are following is trustworthy and that he will lead us on the right road. Hearing the testimonials and how they were talking about God was so inspiring. Becoming like a god is completely up to us. These three choices represent a choice between remaining stuck in the familiarity of the past, accommodating to the present, or choosing to serve the Lord who has blessed us beyond measure. Millions of people around the world from all different backgrounds find miracle healing, forgiveness and love through Jesus in our day! But the Bible also teaches that the chief commitment of our lives is to God Himself. I do not think as Christians that we should always hold someone hostage to an unwise commitment they made to us. How would someone know you’re committed to that person or cause? How would those choices be described in our time? 7When they cried out to the Lord, he put darkness between you and the Egyptians, and made the sea come upon them and cover them; and your eyes saw what I did to Egypt. I also think if someone agrees to allow you out of a commitment then it is ok if you withdraw if done in a responsible manner especially if you have taken on more than you can handle and every commitment you have is suffering. It’s not easy to give up something that connects us to our family and our past yet Joshua says there comes a time to choose. He knows that God is eternal (v.12), and that he can be trusted. Without being … Total Commitment to God. I like Joseph's commitment to God after the angel visited him about Mary's being with child. He secondly challenges us to go beyond being an observer to being a committed disciple of Jesus. A journalist was assigned to the Jerusalem bureau of his newspaper. Remember God’s presence often & draw strength from the knowledge that the One who calls & invites also strengthens & sustains. Questions for Reflection or Discussion This is an extraordinary example of wholehearted commitment to God even in the midst of distress. 6When I brought your ancestors out of Egypt, you came to the sea; and the Egyptians pursued your ancestors with chariots and horsemen to the Red Sea. August 10, 2014 A compelling commitment: 3 stories, 3 views. 14“Now therefore revere the Lord, and serve him in sincerity and in faithfulness; put away the gods that your ancestors served beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the Lord. I once borrowed a tan, leather sports coat from my brother. Think about someone of something that you are committed to…what is the evidence of your commitment? Sometimes, we have back-commitments we’ll have to keep when we get right with God in any area of our lives. Elizabeth couldn’t afford one. God has entrusted or committed a valuable deposit unto each … God still tests us from time to time, to see how committed we really are to Him. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. God Himself provides the perfect picture of commitment. (Joshua 9). Some touch the heart or teach a moral lesson. Although commitment to our beliefs, goals, or significant other may be very difficult at times, the meaningful pursuits of life are hardly ever easy. I hope you will do the same. Joshua’s call for commitment makes it clear that the people have a choice about which god they will worship and serve. Romans 5:8, NIV. Each rider doing the two-day journey has to raise or personally donate at least $4,300. Joshua’s call for commitment makes it clear that the people, including us, have a choice about which god they will worship and serve. What the Lord did for others, he can do for you. Your commitment does not depend on the honesty of others. The Bible offers several examples of faithfulness, first and foremost in the character of God. Jesus wants followers who trust him enough to say, “I won’t stay in the comfort of what’s familiar, I won’t just accommodate to the trends around me. And, when it's to glorify Him, we're sure to stay committed over the long haul. I believe it is a good testimony if we do so. In short, it costs exactly the abundance of life Jesus said he came to bring.”, Jesus wants us to be totally committed to following him, working with him and for him, and struggling onward no matter how difficult the challenge may be. What are the three choices he gives the people? 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