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08-22-21 Kevin Goins - Managing Sexual Desire part 2

“Managing Sexual Desire” (part 2) 
Proverbs 5:3-4 
Some people have the idea that Christians never discuss sex, or, if they do, this discussion must take place behind locked doors.  If that is true, then it is a shame that no one communicated this rule to the authors of the Bible.  God created sex, and in his creation mandate he made sure that the human race can only flourish if sex flourishes.  Since God obviously finds great value in human sexuality, we need to make sure we see our sex life from his perspective.  This is especially true when it comes to how we manage our God-given sexual desire.                                           
I It may be helpful to start off with an outline of chapter 5, so we have an idea where Solomon is going:

 A. First, verses 3-6 focus on ______________ we should say “No” to sexual temptation. 

B. Second, verses 7-14 tell us ___________ we can say “No” to sexual temptation.

C. Third, verses 15-20 continue Solomon’s advice about how to say “NO” to sexual temptation, but from a very d_______________ point of view.

D. Finally, verses 21-23 answer the question about why we should say “No” to sexual sin, but this time from _____________ perspective.

II Why should I manage my sexual desires?  Because listening to sweet words of sexual temptation can result in a very _________________ life (5:3-4).

A. First, there is an issue we must deal with, and that is how many _____________________ see Proverbs chapter 5.

1. Many see in this chapter a patriarchal view of sex in which ______________ are always the victims and __________________ the victimizers.

2. But to see Proverbs in a more accurate way, we need to recognize these four points:

a. First, this book was written, not just for _______________, but for ______________________ as well.

b. Second, Solomon is writing about a sexual predator who was a woman, but that does not mean that in his mind o____________ women can be sexual predators.

c. Third, there is no doubt that the woman depicted in Proverbs 5 is an example of folly or foolishness, but Proverbs also depicts ___________ as a woman.

d. Fourth, there is a simple reason why Solomon talks about the adulteress (female) in chapter 5, and it is because Solomon’s concern is for his ______________. 

B. What is wrong with this woman Solomon describes in verses 3-4?

 1. First, __________ is she?

  a. The Hebrew text calls her “the _________________ woman.”

  b. She is strange for two reasons:

   1. First, she does not live by the ____________ standards of Israel.

2. Second, she is strange because she is not a female r____________ of Solomon’s son.

c. The really strange woman was the a____________________ or prostitute.

d. There is something else about who she is:  she may or may not be beautiful, but she does not ____________________ on her beauty to get what she wants.

2. Second, ______________ does she do?

a. The Jewish Old Testament scholar Michael Fox says that l___________ are the problem here, and l____________ are the only solution.

b. The strange woman uses her lips to f_______________ and manipulate the young man, hoping to persuade him to commit adultery.

c. The only way the son will escape her trap is if he uses his lips to counter her deceptive words with words of d____________________________.

d. The strange woman, or man, was an exception in Solomon’s day, but today he or she has become the n_________________. 

3. Third, to what do her actions _________________?

a. When the young man does what the strange woman wants, the result is the complete _________________________ of his life.

b. Solomon’s point is that though this woman pours out honey with her lips, inside she is nothing but ______________________.

c. The woman’s temptation -- if the son yields to it -- will result in some kind of ______________________.

08-08-21 Kevin Goins - 4 Keys to Managing Sexual Desire

Posted in sermon, First Alliance Church Atlanta, Christianity, Dr. Kevin Goins, Bible, proverbs by facatl on August 18th, 2021

“Four Keys to Managing Sexual Desire” 
Proverbs 5:1-2 
Some people have the idea that Christians never discuss sex, or, if they do, this discussion must take place behind locked doors.  If that is true, then it is a shame that no one communicated this principle to the authors of the Bible.  God created sex, and in his creation mandate he made sure that the human race can only flourish if sex flourishes.  Since God obviously finds great value in human sexuality, we need to make sure we see our sex life from his perspective.  This is especially true when it comes to how we manage our God-given sexual desire.                                           
I Not only is Proverbs chapter five focused on the subject of sex, but so also are the following ___________ chapters.

 A. That is really not surprising, for two reasons:

1. Solomon knew from experience how the inability to manage one’s sexual desires could cause __________________.

2. It is not surprising that Solomon devotes so much attention to sexual desire because he is writing to his y___________________ s______________.

B. So, what is Solomon doing in chapter five?  He is trying to teach his son how to m______________ his sexual desire.

  -Solomon makes _____________ points in these two verses:

II First, we will never manage our sexual desires unless we are willing to __________________ to wisdom (5:1a).

A. What is unique about verse one is that Solomon is saying, “Of all the wisdom which God has given to me to give to you, this is a wisdom that I have seen p________________ true in my own life and experience.” 

B. In other words, Solomon is not speaking t______________________________ here.

c. Every parent’s desire is that our children learn from our mistakes rather than r____________________________ them.

II Second, we will never manage our sexual desires unless we are willing to take r____________________________________________ (5:1b).

A. The point is:  there is a time in life when it is appropriate to think about pursuing an intimate relationship, and there is a time when it is not appropriate, and both the _______________ and ________________ are agreed on this.

B. According to the WHO, each year around the world 770,000 adolescent girls under the age of ___________ get pregnant.

C. Solomon is c__________________ his son to realize the awesome responsibilities that come with sex.

III Third, we will never manage our sexual desires unless we learn to practice d_________________________________ (5:2a).

A. Solomon is asking his son to listen to his teaching so he can develop the ability to make g__________ j______________________ about relationships.

B. Discretion weighs the pros and cons, both in the p___________________ sphere of life and in the m____________________ sphere of life.

C. Discretion means not behaving like an animal with nothing but i___________________ and u______________________ to guide us.

IV Fourth, we will never manage our sexual desires unless we learn how to manage our s_______________________________ (5:2b).

 A. Illicit sexual encounters do not happen without ____________________.

B. The generation that is a________________ or a__________________ to talk about sex is, in some measure, responsible for the sexual immorality of the next generation.

C. According to a 2019 survey done by the Institute for Family Studies, among male and female never-married Evangelicals between the ages of 18 and 22, _________% have engaged in sexual intercourse. 

08-01-21 Kevin Goins - How are we present for the Lord’s Supper?

“How Are We Present at the Lord’s Supper?” 
Luke 24:30-33 
One of the most debated questions in Christian theology is this:  How is Jesus present at the Lord’s Supper?  There is, however, another question which is of equal significance:  how are we present at the Lord’s Supper?  It may be that we are only here out of habit, or we may be here only mentally while the rest of our person is longing to be somewhere else.  If we cannot be present at the Lord’s Supper fully and unreservedly, it may be that we need a fresh perspective on this meal which has been provided for us by our Savior.  Hopefully, we will find a fresh perspective in out text today.                                        
I Most Bible students believe there are ____________ accounts of the Lord’s Supper in the New Testament:  one in Matthew, one in Mark, one in Luke, and Paul’s account in 1 Corinthians 11.

A. But there is also in the New Testament an account of one occasion on which the Lord’s Supper was celebrated ______________ the death and resurrection of Jesus.

B. How many times was the Lord’s Supper celebrated before Jesus went to the cross?  ________________.

 How many times has the Lord’s Supper been celebrated after the death and resurrection of Jesus?  _________________ __________________.

II Is there anything in this account of the Lord’s Supper that gives us a d____________________ perspective than what we find in the other accounts?

A. First, the Luke 24 account reminds us that celebrating the Lord’s Supper ought to be an e_________-o____________________ experience for us (24:31).

1. The bread and the wine are not i_______________, or visions, or teachings about Jesus. 

2. We have a tendency to think of Jesus as o_______________________.

B. Second, the Luke 24 account reminds us that Jesus, who is with us as we celebrate, is no longer l______________________ in the ways he was on earth (24:31b).

1. Jesus was born with a physical body like ours, but after the resurrection he had a glorified body no longer limited by s_______________ and t______________.

2. Until we are sure Jesus sees us, we will never produce a h__________________.

C. Third, the Luke 24 account reminds us that what we know of the power of Jesus’ death and resurrection, we know from ______________ _________________ (24:32).

1. Holding the bread and cup in our hands reminds us that Jesus is here, but that is _____________ what convinces us that Jesus is our risen Savior.

2. Nothing will strengthen our faith in Jesus so much as ________________ and _____________________ what God’s Word says about him.

D. Finally, we need to hear verse 33: “They got up and r_________________________ at once to Jerusalem.”

1. What they had seen in Jerusalem over the last weekend had s______________ and d______________________ them; it had destroyed their faith.

2. After this experience of the Lord’s Supper they couldn’t wait to get back to that terrible place, because they wanted to tell people about the ________________ _____________________.

III There is no place or situation so unbearable that the presence of the crucified and risen Christ in us cannot bring ____________________ and ____________________.

 

 

07-25-21 Kevin Goins - Christmas In July

“Christmas in July”

John 10:22-39

You may believe that it was retailers who dreamed up the idea of Christmas in July in order to increase their sales in the doldrums of summer.  In fact, it is the Bible that brings up this issue and that is what our text today is all about today. 

What does this text have to do with Christmas?                                        

I               First, there is the d________________ of our text (10:22-23).

 

  1. The Feast of Dedication celebrates the Jew’s victory over the Syrian King Antiochus _______.

 

  1. The Messiah had been born and was now in the world teaching and healing, but they were not thinking of him. Instead, they were celebrating, not a religious holiday, but a n____________________ holiday.

 

  1. Christmas is just something almost all Americans __________.

 

II             Second, this text and Christmas are about s_________________________ (10:24).

 

  1. There are two things about this suspense:

 

  1. First, whatever kind of suspense it was, it was i__________________________.

 

  1. Second, their suspense is specifically about whether Jesus is the _______________________.

 

  1. If Jesus had said, “I am the Messiah,” we know they would have understood it p_______________________________.

 

III            Third, this text and Christmas are both focused on ______________ (10:25-30).

 

  1. Christmas is a birthday party for Jesus, and yet everyone gets a gift e______________________________ him.

 

  1. The easier and more n________________ way to translate verse 29 is: “The gift my Father has given to me is greater than all.”

 

  1. The reason Jesus sees us as the greatest of all gifts is not because we are the greatest to ever be loved, it is because he is the greatest ________________.

 

IV            Fourth, this text and Christmas both demonstrate the insidious nature of i___________________________ (10:31-32).

 

  1. Revenge returns evil for evil, but ingratitude returns evil for ____________________.

 

  1. When we say, “Is that all there is?” what we are actually saying is, “All I have been given is not __________________ enough.”
  2. We cannot feel disappointment about the one thing we do not have without setting aside and i____________________ the myriad of things we do have.

V             Finally, both this text and Christmas ask one question: “_________ is _____________?” (10:33-39)

07-18-21 Kevin Goins - Why Does Jesus Call Himself the Good Shepherd?, part 3

“Why does Jesus call himself ‘the Good Shepherd?’” (Part 3)
John 10:11-21 
For most of us, the statement that “Jesus is the good shepherd” lies at the bedrock of our Christian faith.  Many of the Jewish religious leaders, however, were very upset that Jesus was acting as a shepherd, because for them the attention Jesus was receiving was anything but “good.”  In our text today Jesus gives the Pharisees some very plain reasons for why he is the good shepherd.                                        
I First, Jesus is the Good Shepherd because he is “the Friend of Sinners” (10:11a).
II Second, Jesus is the Good Shepherd because he lays down his life for the sheep (10:11b-13).
III Third, Jesus is the Good Shepherd because he knows both his sheep and God intimately (10:14-15).
IV Fourth, Jesus is the Good Shepherd because his love and care is not limited to the nation of Israel (10:16).

V Fifth, Jesus is the Good Shepherd because he is the __________ of ___________ (10:17).

 A. There are three clear indicators in this verse that Jesus is God’s Son:

1. First, and most obvious, Jesus is God’s Son because he c_____________ God his Father.

2. Second, Jesus is God’s Son because he ______________ his life for the sheep.

a. If his willingness to g__________ his Son to die for us reveals that God has the heart of a Father, the fact that Jesus is willing to be g_____________ shows that he has the heart of a Son.

b. Both God the Father and Jesus the Son are working together to save humanity because both share the same h______________ and the same n________________.

3. The third indicator that Jesus is God’s Son is found at the end of this verse: “The reason the Father loves me is that I lay down my life – only to t__________ it up a__________.”

B. We can count on our shepherd to be the Good Shepherd because he is like no _______________ shepherd who ever lived.

VI Sixth, Jesus is the Good Shepherd because he has a_____________________ given him by God (10:18).

 A. As Son of God, Jesus was i__________________ to any kind of human attack.

B. Jesus never acts on his own in relation to the Father, but he always acts on his own in relation to p________________.

C. Jesus has the authority to defeat death because he got a command from God the Father to give his life for the sins of the world and he o______________ that command.

D. To make your death count as a substitute for the punishment of billions of people requires a_______________ authority, and to overcome death requires u___________________ authority – and that is the authority of our shepherd.

VII Seventh, Jesus is the Good Shepherd because he gives people the opportunity to d________________ whether they want to follow him (10:19-21).

A. The problem is: Jesus is the Good Shepherd o________________ for those who choose to follow him.

B. There are two things about choosing which make it so difficult:

1. In our world there are m__________ decisions which we need to make each day. 

2. The second problem is that every decision we make has consequences and some consequences change our life s_____________________.

C. There are so many choices, so many decisions we must make each day, and each of these decisions is making us into a p__________________ kind of person.

07-11-21 Kevin Goins - Why Does Jesus Call Himself the Good Shepherd, part 2

“Why does Jesus call himself ‘the Good Shepherd?’” (Part 2)
John 10:11-21 
For most of us, the statement that “Jesus is the good shepherd” lies at the bedrock of our Christian faith.  Many of the Jewish religious leaders, however, were very upset that Jesus was acting as a shepherd, because for them the attention Jesus was receiving was anything but “good.”  In our text today Jesus gives the Pharisees some very plain reasons for why he is the good shepherd.                                        
I First, Jesus is the Good Shepherd because sinners are d____________ to him (10:11a).

II Second, Jesus is the Good Shepherd because he l__________ d_____________ his life for the sheep (10:11b-13).

III Third, Jesus is the Good Shepherd because he knows both his ____________ and ________ intimately (10:14-15).

IV Fourth, Jesus is the Good Shepherd because his love and care is not l________________ to his own sheep pen (10:16).

 A. Much that Jesus says in John 10 is based on E__________________ 34.

B. We Gentiles interpret Ezekiel 34 as a statement of how God cares for all nations, including, but not limited to, _______________. 

-But many Jews in Jesus’ day thought Ezekiel 34 was about how God would r________________ and bring home the Jews who had been driven out of Israel by her enemies.

C. How did Jesus see the Old Testament?  He saw the Old Testament as something he would f__________________.

D. By fulfilling the Old Testament, Jesus means that he wants to e______________ it, to amplify it, and to i____________________ it.

E. When Jesus says he came to fulfill the Old Testament, what he means is that he wants to show us how to take off our b_____________________ and see life as it really is.

V The Jewish people had no problem seeing how God loved ______________, but they had blinders on when they looked at other nations.

A. Before Jesus came, the Old Testament had already said that the Messiah is for ____________ the nations.

B. John 10:16 is not the ________________ time this Gospel says that God loves all the nations. 

C. In the New Testament, the word we translate as “Gentiles” is the word ethnos, which means n___________________.

D. This means that it is not just __________________ (meaning us) who are included in God’s flock, but all the nations of the earth.

E. According to research done by the Pew Research Center on the issue of immigration:

 -Only _________% of regular churchgoers said that their pastor had addressed the issue of immigration with them.

 -____________% of the Americans surveyed said that immigrants strengthened American with their hard work and talent; _________% said immigrants are more of a burden to this nation.

 -Younger Americans, Hispanic Catholics, and the religiously unaffiliated are more likely than other groups to express a _____________________ view of immigrants.

 -White evangelicals are among those expressing the ________________ favorable views of immigrants.

 -Surprisingly, only _________% of white evangelicals consider their Christian faith the most important influence on their opinions about immigration policy. 

VI In verse 16 Jesus not only says he wants to include other nations in his flock, but that he wants only ___________ flock.

 A. No shepherd ever had m_____________________ flocks.

 B. There can only be one ______________ because there is only one ________________.

07-04-21 Kevin Goins - Why Does Jesus Call Himself the Good Shepherd

Posted in sermon, Gospel of John, First Alliance Church Atlanta, Christianity, Dr. Kevin Goins by facatl on August 17th, 2021

“Why does Jesus call himself ‘the Good Shepherd?’”
John 10:11-21 
For most of us, the statement that “Jesus is the good shepherd” lies at the bedrock of our Christian faith.  Many of the Jewish religious leaders, however, were very upset that Jesus was acting as a shepherd, because for them the attention Jesus was receiving was anything but “good.”  In our text today Jesus gives the Pharisees some very plain reasons for why he is the good shepherd.                                        
I Jesus used two parables in John 10:1-10 to show the Pharisees how they were being bad spiritual leaders, but they did not get e__________________ parable.

A. As a result, Jesus leaves the indirect language of parables and begins to speak very d_______________________.

B. Jesus says to the Pharisees, “You are bad shepherds, but I am the good shepherd, the only _______________ for Israel.

II What does it mean to be a good shepherd?  

A. In New Testament Greek there are __________ adjectives commonly translated as “good.”

1. First, agathos means to be good in the sense of being m_________________ pure.

2. Second, kalos, the word Jesus uses here, means to be morally pure, but it has an added dimension:  it also means to be beautiful, attractive, winsome, and m___________________.

B. It is possible to be morally good and at the same time be very u___________________.

C. The Bible says Jesus was morally perfect, without sin, and yet the Bible calls Jesus “a f_________________ to sinners.”

D. The Pharisees did not see the fact that sinners were running to Jesus as evidence of his goodness, so Jesus gives them ____________ additional reasons for why he is the kind of shepherd who is truly good.

III First, Jesus is the good shepherd because he is willing to ________ to protect his sheep (10:11-13).

A. To “lay down your life” means to be willing to die, but to die for the sheep does not n______________________ make one a good shepherd.

B. In verses 12 to 13 Jesus contrasts the shepherd with the h____________________.

C. Jesus does not condemn the hired hand, because when a hired hand runs away from the wolf, he is fulfilling his call; he is doing what a hired hand is e_____________________ to do. 

D. The sheep do not belong to the hired hand, and so he is not i____________________ in their welfare.

E. Jesus makes two points about the hired hand:

 1. A hired hand c________________ be a good shepherd.

2. He (Jesus) can be a good shepherd because his _______________ is the one to whom all the sheep of the world belong.

IV But we have a problem:  for many in our world it makes no sense that Jesus had to ___________ in order for God to forgive us.

A. Because God is holy and sin is unjust, if God does nothing to punish sin, then there is no j_________________ in the universe.

B. First, Jesus is the perfect shepherd for the sheep because he s_____________________ himself so that we might escape death and have life.

V Second, Jesus is the good shepherd because he knows b______________ his sheep and God intimately (10:14-15).

 A. Jesus is making two statements here:

  1. I am a good shepherd because I know the ______________ so well.

  2. I am a good shepherd because I know ________ the ______________ so well.

B. What Jesus literally says in verse 14 is, “I know m_____________ and m___________ know me.” 
 

06-27-21 Kevin Goins - Who’s Who in the Drama of Salvation

Posted in sermon, Gospel of John, First Alliance Church Atlanta, Christianity, Dr. Kevin Goins by facatl on August 17th, 2021

“Who’s Who in the Drama of Salvation?”
John 10:3-10 
Today we are going to look at the last two characters in the drama of salvation found in John 10:1-10.                                    
I The first character in Jesus’ story of the who’s who of salvation is the thieves and robbers (10:1).
II The second character is the true shepherd (10:2).

III In verse 3 Jesus mentions a third character:  the w___________________ who “opens the gate” for the real shepherd.  Who is the watchman?

A. Throughout church history there have been ____________ answers given to that question:

 1. Some say the watchman was ___________ the ___________________.

2. There have also been many who have identified the watchman as the _________________ ___________________.  

B. Which is the correct answer?  It is not necessarily a case of e___________-o_________.

C. Today, without the Holy Spirit opening the eyes of people, no one can r___________________ Jesus for the Savior he is.

IV The fourth character in the drama is “the g_______________ for the sheep” (10:7).

 -Jesus is claiming that in his work as the shepherd of the sheep he also acts as a gate or ________________ for the sheep.  How so?

A. First, he is the gate in the sense that he keeps thieves and robbers a_____________________ from the sheep.

1. Jesus here claims to be a gate or a door that is s______________ enough to keep out any thief or robber. 

2. Sheep who follow Jesus will not be deceived by the evil one if we focus our attention on l_______________________ to God’s Word.

3. One of the special ways in which Jesus acts as a door, protecting us from the evil outside, is by taking the Word of God, which we have stored in our minds, and using that word as a l________ d__________________ to reveal how false are the things the evil one whispers to us.

4. Jesus is our gate who wants to protect us by keeping the lies of the enemy f________ f__________ our heart and mind.

B. Second, Jesus is the gate in the sense that he supplies an e___________________ to eternal life.

A. The only gate through which you can enter God’s sheepfold is ________________.  But that is not the o____________ way in which Jesus is a door.

B. Jesus is also a door in the sense that he is the only one who can enable us to close off the old s____________-c_________________ life we used to live.

C. Jesus closes off the door to our selfish past and he acts as an opening to a new life, a life in relationship with ____________.

D. What does Jesus mean when he says, “[We] will come in and go out and find pasture?”  He is not talking about going in and out of s___________________.  He is talking about how we can interact with Jesus _________ with the world.

V The last character is the ____________________.

A. We do not need to say a lot about sheep because we know them very well.  

B. We know them because we _________ the sheep.

1. We sheep cannot protect ourselves from the _____________ of the false shepherds.

2. We sheep do not know how to find real _________________________.

3. We sheep certainly cannot protect ourselves from the most vicious of our enemies:  the power of ______________________.

06-06-21 Kevin Goins - The True Shepherd

“Who’s Who in the Drama of Salvation:  The True Shepherd”
John 10:1-5 
Last Sunday we looked at the false or unworthy shepherds.  Today we focus our attention on the one Jesus says is the true shepherd.                                    
I First, the true shepherd enters the sheep pen in the _____________ way (10:1-2).

A. What does it mean that Jesus is the true shepherd who deserves to have access to the sheep?  It means he is not a f___________ shepherd or a p_____________ Messiah.

B. Who, then, is the true shepherd Messiah?  Jesus says it is the one who enters through the g________________ rather than climb in some other way.

C. The Old Testament prophets have given lots of c________________ about the identity of the Messiah.

D. There were more than _________________ specific prophecies about the coming of the Messiah and Jesus f________________________________ every one of them.

II Second, the true shepherd calls his sheep ____ _______________ (10:3)

 A. There are two things about this that are very important:

  1. First, Jesus knows our name even when ____ ________ else knows it.

-Jesus is the shepherd who remembers us even when our own l___________ o___________ have forgotten us.

2. The second thing that is important is that Jesus says, “He calls his own sheep by name and _____________ them _________.”

 -Jesus says he calls us by name so that we will get up and f_________________ him.

B. How many times have we heard him call o_______ name and how many times have we r____________________ to respond?

III Third, the true shepherd l____________________ his sheep (10:4).

 A. Notice the sequence:  First he b_____________ o__________ his sheep.

B. Second, he g_________ a____________ of them.

 -Since Jesus is going before us that means everything that happens to us he has already e_____________________________.

C. Third, the sheep follow because they know his v____________________.

IV Finally, the true shepherd has sheep who are l____________________ (10:5). 

A. Stranger is the Greek word allotrios which means “belonging to a_________________”.

 -To follow a shepherd who does not belong to God is to follow someone whose motivations and desires are not g____________, and that is dangerous.

B.  Sometimes, however, we are d______________________, but the true shepherd’s sheep are never p_______________________ deceived.

C. The only way to hear the shepherd and to be loyal to him is to c___________________ every voice we hear with the voice of God’s Word.

05-30-21 Kevin Goins - Who’s Who in the Drama of Salvation

“Who’s Who in the Drama of Salvation”
John 10:1-10 
There are many times in life when we want to know who’s who.  We want to know who’s who when we go to a play, or a concert, or a baseball game.  When it comes to the drama of salvation, however, we must know who’s who so that we can make sure we are playing the part our Savior wants us to play and not the part the enemy wants us to play.  In John 10 Jesus tells a story which makes very clear who is who when it comes to the story of how the human race can be saved.                                      
I In John 10 Jesus mentions __________ major players or characters in the drama of salvation.

A. First mentioned is “the t________________,” who is also called “the robber,” and later “the s________________________ .”

B. Second, there is “the S____________________ of the sheep.”

C. Third, there is “the w_______________________________________.”

D. Fourth, there is “the g________________ for the sheep.”

E. Lastly, there are “the s_________________________.”

II We need to say three things about the story before we proceed:

 A. First, this  story is t__________________.

B. Second, this story sums up the history of the human d______________________, the history of our s____________________ predicament.

C. Third, this story is about the most important aspect of human life:  our r_______________________ with God.

III With all this in mind, let’s look at who’s who in the drama of salvation.  First, there is “the t___________________.”

 A. Why begin here?  Only one reason: this is where _________________ begins.

B. The story Jesus tells has a bad guy, but this bad guy is not just someone who steals f__________________ sheep.

IV The first thing we need to ask about the thieves is, ____________ are _____________? 

A. Prior to the sixteenth century, when Bibles were first divided into chapters and verses, n______ o_________ would have wondered who the thieves are in John 10.

-People would know, because in there Bible there would have no chapter b__________________ to separate chapter nine and ten.

B. Who appears in John 9 who is identified by Jesus in John 10 as thieves?  Clearly, it is the _________________________.

V The second thing we need to ask:  Is it only c___________________ that identifies the Pharisees as the thieves, or is there additional biblical evidence?

A. It turns out that this problem of the spiritual leaders of Israel being bad leaders appears t___________________________ the Bible.

B. What we see in all the biblical examples is that spiritual leaders are often tempted to a___________________________ those they lead.

VI The third thing we need to ask:  ___________ did the Pharisees act this way?

A. We sinful human beings have the idea that if anyone does what I do, then he or she is my c________________________________.  If anyone else does what I do and he or she is lifted up, that automatically l________________________ me.

B. The Pharisees loved s__________________________________.

C. When we resent another ministry’s success or growth, we become s_______________ b_______________________ in the drama of salvation.

VII In this story the Pharisees are the “thieves and robbers,” but a character in a story like this can represent _______________ than one person outside the story world.

A. The Pharisees were thieves, but the most depraved of all thieves is the one who comes o______________ to steal, kill, and destroy.

B. The presence of evil in our world has become so appallingly vicious that our best i______________________ explanations for it no longer satisfy.

C. The Bible tells us about the devil:

1. The Devil tries to steal our peace by overwhelming us with a______________________.

2. The devil’s mission is to kill, not just the body, but the _________________.

3. The devil seeks to destroy God’s c_____________________________.

D. The Bible says that the enemy, as formidable as he is, himself has an enemy, and his enemy is the S___________________________ who lays down his life for the sheep.    


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