Archive for the ‘Judges’ Category

April 13th, 2015

Lordship and Leadership

“In those days there was no king in Israel. Everyone did what was right in his own eyes.” Judges 21:25 (ESV)

Chaos saturated the people of Israel as each chose to do what was right in his own eyes. The sense of covenant community was fragmented and the evidence of unity was shattered. Without a king in Israel, the cultural current of immorality intensified.

What is your moral compass? Where do you look to gain clarity on what brings honor to God? How do you know what you are supposed to be giving your life to?

  • “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” Psalm 119:105 (ESV)
  • “When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.” John 16:13 (ESV)

You are blessed with access to God’s revelation through His Word. How may Bibles do you have? The Bible is the owner’s manual for your life. As you read and feed on the Bible, God will illuminate the path He wants you to take.

The Holy Spirit lives in you to guide you into all truth. He lives in you to intercede for you and to empower you to decipher truth from falsehood. As you walk in the truth revealed to you by the Holy Spirit, you will learn to surrender to the Lordship of Christ and you will learn to submit to His leadership.

Focus your life on being a fully yielded follower of Christ. Draw near to God through His Word and be responsive to the promptings of the Holy Spirit living in you.

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, April 13th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Judges, Leadership, Vision.
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April 12th, 2015

Energy Allocation

“Then Samson called to the Lord and said, ‘O Lord God, please remember me and please strengthen me only this once, O God, that I may be avenged on the Philistines for my two eyes.’ And Samson grasped the two middle pillars on which the house rested, and he leaned his weight against them, his right hand on the one and his left hand on the other. And Samson said, ‘Let me die with the Philistines.’ Then he bowed with all his strength, and the house fell upon the lords and upon all the people who were in it. So the dead whom he killed at his death were more than those whom he had killed during his life.” Judges 16:28-30 (ESV)

What are you doing with the life God has given you? Have you established your priorities and do they reflect God’s priorities? You were created to make a difference in the world for God’s glory. It is not about what you can do for God, but what God wants to do in you and through you to accomplish His purposes and His plan.

Priorities and stewardship go hand-in-hand. Your priorities will determine how you stewardship your energy and influence. You must determine how you will allocate the energy and influence God has given you. How will you invest your life to make an eternal difference?

Samson was blessed by God to be a blessing and to rescue his people from the Philistines. Samson drifted from God and was corrupted by lust and trapped by the seduction of Delilah. However, God granted Samson’s final request to be strengthened so he could be avenged on the Philistines for his two eyes.

What would have been different about Samson’s life had he wisely allocated his energy and influence for God’s glory? What about your life? How are you allocating your energy and influence?

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, April 12th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Judges, Samson, Stewardship.
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April 11th, 2015

Birth of a Blessing

“And the angel of the Lord appeared to the woman and said to her, ‘Behold, you are barren and have not borne children, but you shall conceive and bear a son. Therefore be careful and drink no wine or strong drink, and eat nothing unclean, for behold, you shall conceive and bear a son. No razor shall come upon his head, for the child shall be a Nazirite to God from the womb, and he shall begin to save Israel from the hand of the Philistines.’” Judges 13:3-5 (ESV)

God performed a miracle by enabling Manoah and his barren wife to have a son, Samson. To their amazement and delight, Samson grew and the Lord blessed him. He was set apart as a Nazirite to God and positioned by God to save Israel from the hand of the Philistines.

Eventually Samson married a daughter of the Philistines at Timnah. This was part of God’s plan since the Philistines ruled over Israel. Samson was deceived by his father-in-law and sought revenge by setting fire to the stacked grain and standing grain as well as the olive orchards. In his rage, Samson struck down 1,000 men with the jawbone of a donkey.

  • “And he was very thirsty, and he called upon the Lord and said, ‘You have granted this great salvation by the hand of your servant, and shall I now die of thirst and fall into the hands of the uncircumcised?’ And God split open the hollow place that is at Lehi, and water came out from it. And when he drank, his spirit returned, and he revived. Therefore the name of it was called En-hakkore; it is at Lehi to this day.And he judged Israel in the days of the Philistines twenty years.” Judges 15:18-20 (ESV)

God supernaturally provided for Samson throughout his life and He will provide for you. Entrust your life to His care.

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, April 11th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Blessing, Judges, Samson.
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April 10th, 2015

Continual Realities

“And the Lord said to the people of Israel, ‘Did I not save you from the Egyptians and from the Amorites, from the Ammonites and from the Philistines? The Sidonians also, and the Amalekites and the Maonites oppressed you, and you cried out to me, and I saved you out of their hand. Yet you have forsaken me and served other gods; therefore I will save you no more. Go and cry out to the gods whom you have chosen; let them save you in the time of your distress.‘” Judges 10:11-14 (ESV)

God delivered some strong words to the people of Israel after their willful disobedience in spite of God’s perpetual gracious treatment. God rescued them and delivered them from their oppressors. They still chose to forsake God and served other gods.

As a result of their incessant rebellion, God told the people of Israel to go and cry out to the gods whom they had chosen. God encouraged them to let their gods save them in their time of distress. Of course, their gods would not respond.

The propensity to sin is a common thread throughout human history. Living in a fallen world and combating the sinful nature are continual realities. To live in victory requires forsaking sin and following Christ.

  • “But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.” Romans 13:14 (ESV)
  • “So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.” 2 Timothy 2:22 (ESV)

Your flesh craves sin. Crucify the flesh by starving the flesh. Be robed in the righteousness of Christ and walk in the power of His resurrection. Make no provision for the flesh. Flee sinful allurements and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace.

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Friday, April 10th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Confession, Disobedience, Judges.
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April 9th, 2015

Tug of Rebellion

“As soon as Gideon died, the people of Israel turned again and whored after the Baals and made Baal-berith their god. And the people of Israel did not remember the Lord their God, who had delivered them from the hand of all their enemies on every side,and they did not show steadfast love to the family of Jerubbaal (that is, Gideon) in return for all the good that he had done to Israel.” Judges 8:33-35 (ESV)

When you trace the journey of the people of Israel, you will notice a pattern of obedience, rebellion, discipline, and repentance. God blesses obedience and God disciplines disobedience. The people of Israel would obey God for a season and then allow the tug of rebellion to captivate their attention. Instead of worshiping the Lord their God, they would digress into idolatry.

As a follower of Jesus Christ, the Apostle Paul identified the tug of rebellion that originated in his sinful nature. Even though he was born again and filled with the Holy Spirit, Paul had to perpetually combat the cravings of the sin nature.

  • “For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out.For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.” Romans 7:18-20 (ESV)

How do you triumph over the tug of rebellion? Walk in full surrender to the Lordship of Christ. Acknowledge your total dependency upon the Lord to empower you to live in victory. Run from sin and run to Jesus as you practice instant obedience.

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, April 9th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Gideon, Judges, Rebellion.
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April 8th, 2015

God’s Way to Victory

“The Lord said to Gideon, ‘The people with you are too many for me to give the Midianites into their hand, lest Israel boast over me, saying, My own hand has saved me.’” Judges 7:2 (ESV)

Gideon considered his clan to be the weakest in Manasseh and himself the least of his father’s house. He did not feel qualified to lead the charge to defeat the Midianites. God confirmed His will through a fire, a fleece, and a formula. Gideon prepared a sacrifice and God sent an angel of the Lord.  “Then the angel of the Lord reached out the tip of the staff that was in his hand and touched the meat and the unleavened cakes. And fire sprang up from the rock and consumed the meat and the unleavened cakes” (Judges 6:21 ESV).

Gideon asked for additional clarification by asking God to fill a wool fleece with dew while keeping all the ground dry. God performed the miracle and Gideon wrung enough dew from the fleece to fill a bowl with water. The fleece was used again to test the validity of God’s will. This time, Gideon asked God to let the fleece remain dry while allowing there to be dew on all the ground. God performed that miracle.

The formula God chose for Gideon demonstrated God’s power in the midst of Gideon’s weaknesses. The formula involved reducing Gideon’s army from 32,000 to 300. Gideon and his army of 300 won the victory!

God’s way to victory does not always line up with our logical thought process. In our humanity, we tend to judge our circumstances from our limited point of view. God’s ways are higher than our ways (Isaiah 55:9).

The victory over our sin, our death, and our dilemma was won God’s way through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus!

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, April 8th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Gideon, Judges, Victory.
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April 7th, 2015

Drifting from God

“And the people of Israel did what was evil in the sight of the Lord. They forgot the Lord their God and served the Baals and the Asheroth.” Judges 3:7 (ESV)

How quick they were to forget the Lord their God after all He had done to deliver them from Egyptian bondage! Sound familiar? The generation following Joshua’s death was marked by disobedience. They drifted from the Lord.

  • “And all that generation also were gathered to their fathers. And there arose another generation after them who did not know the Lord or the work that he had done for Israel.” Judges 2:10 (ESV)
  • “Therefore we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it.” Hebrews 2:1 (ESV)

We are made to worship. We will worship something or someone. Idolatry seeps in when devotion to the Lord shifts. An idol is anything that dilutes our passion for God or diverts our affection from God. Drifting from God is a perpetual reality for the child of God who neglects practicing instant obedience. We are to pay close attention to what we have received from the Lord and adhere to the principles of God’s Word so that we can walk in alignment with God’s purpose and plan.

Jesus left the glory of heaven to come earth in order to provide the atoning sacrifice for our sin. Jesus was obedient to death on a cross. His passion was to fulfill God’s will and to finish His work. The story of redemption is marked by the instant obedience that Jesus practiced throughout His life and ministry on earth.

Instead of drifting from God, decide to yield to the Lordship of Christ and be a fully devoted follower of Christ.

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, April 7th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Disobedience, Joshua, Judges.
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April 6th, 2015

Your Funeral

“And Joshua the son of Nun, the servant of the Lord, died at the age of 110 years. And they buried him within the boundaries of his inheritance in Timnath-heres, in the hill country of Ephraim, north of the mountain of Gaash.” Judges 2:8-9 (ESV)

Some of the most meaning funerals I have ever preached have been those in which the children of the deceased person stand to speak about their parent’s life. One day you will take your final breath on the earth and your funeral will be conducted. What should your children be able to say at your funeral?

Our parents taught us how to walk with God. If you want your children to walk with God, then model the value of intimacy with God. Let them see you having your daily quiet time. Share the overflow of what God is teaching you in your daily walk with Him. Place your children in environments that will help them develop their walk with God.

Our parents taught us how to love others. Validate the value God places on others. Show your children how to love others. Your children are watching you closely. They know if you genuinely love people. Another important step is to seize opportunities that will enable your children to serve others.

Our parents were still living by faith when they died. In order to leave a legacy you must live a legacy. Guard your priorities in order to finish strong. Keep your love relationship with Jesus your number one priority.

Can you imagine what Joshua’s children would have said at his funeral after he lived 110 years? Our father taught us how to walk with God, how to love others, how to make wise decisions, and he was still living by faith when he died. It’s never too late to start. What will your children say at your funeral?

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, April 6th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Death, Joshua, Judges.
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April 13th, 2012

Lordship and Leadership

“In those days there was no king in Israel. Everyone did what was right in his own eyes.” Judges 21:25 (ESV)

Chaos saturated the people of Israel as each chose to do what was right in his own eyes. The sense of covenant community was fragmented and the evidence of unity was shattered. Without a king in Israel, the cultural current of immorality intensified.

What is your moral compass? Where do you look to gain clarity on what brings honor to God? How do you know what you are supposed to be giving your life to?

  • “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” Psalm 119:105 (ESV)
  • “When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.” John 16:13 (ESV)

You are blessed with access to God’s revelation through His Word. How may Bibles do you have? The Bible is the owner’s manual for your life. As you read and feed on the Bible, God will illuminate the path He wants you to take.

The Holy Spirit lives in you to guide you into all truth. He lives in you to intercede for you and to empower you to decipher truth from falsehood. As you walk in the truth revealed to you by the Holy Spirit, you will learn to surrender to the Lordship of Christ and you will learn to submit to His leadership.

Focus your life on being a fully yielded follower of Christ. Draw near to God through His Word and be responsive to the promptings of the Holy Spirit living in you.

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 96:  Judges 19-21)

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Friday, April 13th, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category Judges, Leadership, Vision.
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April 12th, 2012

Energy Allocation

“Then Samson called to the Lord and said, ‘O Lord God, please remember me and please strengthen me only this once, O God, that I may be avenged on the Philistines for my two eyes.’ 29 And Samson grasped the two middle pillars on which the house rested, and he leaned his weight against them, his right hand on the one and his left hand on the other. 30 And Samson said, ‘Let me die with the Philistines.’ Then he bowed with all his strength, and the house fell upon the lords and upon all the people who were in it. So the dead whom he killed at his death were more than those whom he had killed during his life.” Judges 16:28-30 (ESV)

What are you doing with the life God has given you? Have you established your priorities and do they reflect God’s priorities? Your were created to make a difference in the world for God’s glory. It is not about what you can do for God, but what God wants to do in you and through you to accomplish His purposes and His plan.

Priorities and stewardship go hand-in-hand. Your priorities will determine how you stewardship your energy and influence. You must determine how you will allocate the energy and influence God has given you. How will you invest your life to make an eternal difference?

Samson was blessed by God to be a blessing and to rescue his people from the Philistines. Samson drifted from God and was corrupted by lust and trapped by the seduction of Delilah. However, God granted Samson’s final request to be strengthened so he could be avenged on the Philistines for his two eyes.

What would have been different about Samson’s life had he wisely allocated his energy and influence for God’s glory? What about your life? How are you allocating your energy and influence?

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 95:  Judges 16-18)

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, April 12th, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category Judges, Samson, Stewardship.
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