Sunday School Material 7-31-11: Return to Obedience

(Judges 10:10-18; 7/31/11)

Introduction: A key idea in today’s Sunday School material is that the Children of Israel turned to God from their sinful ways, after experiencing a great deal of trouble.

Prayerfully, we will be challenged to turn to God, before we have to experience more pain.

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Read Judges 10:10-14
I. Confrontation From God.
The Children of Israel cried unto the Lord for deliverance. God reminded them in the Sunday School material of how He had delivered them in the past.

But because they forsook God and turned to false gods, God tells them to call on their false gods for deliverance.

Applications –
- The sins of forsaking God and serving others.
Notice in vs. 10 of the Sunday School material that the Children of Israel were guilty of two sins. First, they forsook God. Second, they served other gods.

Before we condemn them too much, we should remember that when we don’t obey God’s will for our lives, we are turning from Him. And when we do what we want to do, instead of what God tells us to do, we are turning to something other than God.

When God says to pay our tithes, be involved in inviting and bringing loved ones to church and Christ, and to demonstrate a loving spirit but we do what we want, we are guilty of the same sins.

Let’s turn from the sins of forsaking God and serving others.

- Appreciate what God has done. Notice in vss. 11-12 of the Sunday School material there is a list of some of the many things that God had done for the Children of Israel.

As with those in the text, God has been mighty good to each of us. We may not have all that we want, but we all have more than we need or deserve. Let’s live like we appreciate all that God has done for us.

Such appreciation should inspire obedience. To say that we love and appreciate God but then ignore His commands to love/obey Him and to love our neighbors as we love ourselves is contradictory.

- Serving instead of angering God. Notice in vss. 13-14 that God appears to be so angry that He tells the people to call on the gods they had been serving to get them out of trouble.

It is a depressing occasion, when God sends us to false gods, instead of showing mercy on us. However, we provoke God to this state of emotion, when we take His blessings and serve other gods.

Let’s make sure we are serving God with all that we have, instead of angering God with our sinful lives. Our careers, families, and even we can only take us so far. There are some problems that we will need the Lord to deliver us from.

Read Judges 10:15-18
II. Confrontation From Ammon.
In this section of the Sunday School material the Children of Israel put away their false gods and served God.

Then the Lord was grieved for their misery. A show down is coming together at Gilead and Mizpeh. The Children of Israel are seeking someone to fight against the people of Ammon.

Applications –
- Turning to God from our sinful ways.
Notice in vss. 15-16 that it was when they put away their strange gods and served the Lord along with their crying unto the Lord that God felt their misery and had mercy on them.

There are too many who are more concerned with being out of pain than being right with God. The measure of being right with God is that we do what He tells us to do. Let’s work on turning to God from our sinful ways, so we can be blessed.

At the core of God’s will is for us to love Him with all that we have and love others, as we love ourselves. If we don’t even love Him enough to tithe and worship with enthusiasm then we have some growing to do.

If we don’t love others enough to witness to them, be friendly, and respond to their needs then we have some growing to do. If we don’t love ourselves enough to exercise wise stewardship over our health and wealth then we really have some work to do.

- Seeking and following God sent leadership. Notice in vss. 17-18 of the Sunday School material that a leader was needed to lead the people out of their troubled situation.

As much sense as it makes to have a leader, we should also strive to discern who God is sending us to be our leader. If we choose the wrong one, we can go from bad to worst.

Let’s seek God’s wisdom in choosing a leader and then follow the leader that God sends. Too often we are tempted to resist the leader whom God sends. This only makes our situations worst.

Conclusion: Let’s work on turning to God, before we have to experience more pain. God has much for those obey His will.

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