Stumbling block: one definition: refers to something or someone who keeps another from a relationship with God.
- Satan has traps within the church, and we have to watch that we don’t fall in the trap of becoming a hindrance to some seeing Jesus.
- We don’t want to used by the devil to stop someone from seeing Jesus
- Or be the victim because someone was used of the devil to turn us away
WE KNOW THAT THE DEVIL’S JOB IS TO STOP THE WORK OF GOD FROM GOING FORTH
- The devil can and will use anything he can to stop someone finding and getting close to Jesus
- We will talk about some of these down the line
- And he also uses people that have been in the church to prevent the work of God from going forth
- Or to turn someone away from the faith
- He may work to use you or me to turn someone away
- He may have worked to use someone to turn you away
The Devil is our enemy and seeks to deceive, seduce and entice us to sin
- He even tried to use Peter to stop Jesus from going to the cross
- …. He said be that far from you Lord
Matthew 16:22-23: Then Peter took him, and began to rebuke him, saying, Be it far from thee, Lord: this shall not be unto thee. 23 But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.
Jesus said in Luke 17:1-5
Luke 17: Then said he unto the disciples, It is impossible, but that offenses will come: but woe unto him, through whom they come!2 It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.3 Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him 4 And if he trespass against thee seven times in a day, and seven times in a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive him.5 And the apostles said unto the Lord, Increase our faith.
• Jesus said it is impossible to live in this life and not have an offense or cause to stumble
• But woe unto them through whom they come it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones
• Jesus is concerned about the new babies, even the ones that left him and he left the 99 to go and get that little lost one.
• The disciples knew that these things were hard to hear and possibly had to follow
• Especially the forgiveness part : But Jesus said : Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him4 And if he trespass against thee seven times in a day, and seven times in a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive him.
• They knew this would be a difficult task, so they said Lord increase our faith
• Developing the Love of God in our lives requires faith.
Remember : I talked about Phileo love: Is relatively easy : Love those that love us.
• But Agape love: is unconditional love: Loving the unlovely.
• Jesus Love’
Heb 3:15 While it is said, today if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation
Could we be doing things that may be a stumbling block to someone knowing Jesus Christ?
• Things that may cause people to take an offense into their hearts
Offended people produce
Ask yourself: Do I have behavior or attitude that leads another to sin or destructive behavior?
Is there something about me that KEEPS ANOTHER FROM A RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD.
· Divisions Strifes and Undercurrents
· Gossips, backbiting, Accusations
· An unholy life, destructive habits
· Refusing to Repent
· Divided Heart
· Abusing the Grace of God
Father, in the name of Jesus, I ask that you would reveal by Your Spirit, Your Word to me. Expose any hidden areas of my heart that have hindered me from knowing you and serving you more effectively. Expose to me any area in my life that is causing a stumbling block or and offense to someone else’s life. I welcome the conviction of Your Spirit and ask for Your grace to carry out what you desire of me. May I come to know you more intimately as a result of being obedient to your Spirit and Your Word.
Give your heart to Jesus today by saying this prayer:
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank you for dying on the cross for my sin. Please forgive me. Come into my life. I receive You as my Lord and Savior. Please, help me to live for you the rest of this life. Fill me with your Holy Spirit. In the name of Jesus, I pray.
Isaiah 55:8-9: For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. 9 For as the heavens are higher
WE KEEP PRESSING FORWARD AND NOT FAINT. FAINT: TO QUIT, LOSE HEART, GROW WEARY AND TIRED WITH WEARINESS AND EXHAUSTION. DON’T QUIT! DON’T Give up.
Acts 10:38: How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good and healing all that were