Our Father who art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, On earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; And forgive us our debts, As we also have forgiven our debtors; And lead us not into temptation, But deliver us from evil. For thine is the Kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. We honor You, Lord. We praise You, Lord. We give You that is due to Your holiness. Our faith in is You, Lord. We confess You before all people. We love Your Word, and honor it with our life. Thank You for blessing us to stay free to share Your Word online, and wherever we go in this country. Help those in other countries to be able to live a life that honor You, and that they may share Your gospel with whosoever will listen. This we pray in Jesus Christ Mighty Name, AMEN.
Scripture: Mark 11:23-24 Revised Standard Version (RSV)23 Truly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, 'Be taken up and cast into the sea,' and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will come to pass, it will be done for him. 24 Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.
Subject: Faith and Confession
Mark 11:23 says, "For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith."
As explained in Mark 1:42, faith is released by speaking words. Notice that speaking is emphasized three times in this one verse, and the Lord commands us to believe that what we say will come to pass. We are to believe in the power of our words.
Failure to believe in the power of words won't keep this law of God from working. The last part of this verse says, "He shall have whatsoever he saith." If we receive this instruction and begin to speak words in faith that line up with God's Word, then we will have the positive results that follow. But if we refuse this lesson and continue to speak words of doubt, we will eventually believe them and have the negative things that these words produce.
As stated in (Matthew 12:36-37), every word counts. There are no such things as "idle" words that will not work for us or against us. Death or life are in the power of every word we speak (Proverbs 18:21). Our words can be our most powerful weapon against the devil, or they can become a snare of the devil (Proverbs 6:2). Faith-filled words can move mountains.
The physical mountain that Jesus might have meant or have been pointing to would either be the Mount of Olives or one of the mountains that Jerusalem was built on (see note 1 at Joh 5:1). However, Jesus was using the word "mountain" symbolically to refer to any high obstacle that might stand in our way.
Jesus said we should speak to the mountain, or the problem. Most people speak to God about their problem, but few follow Jesus' instructions and speak directly to the "mountain." God has put certain things under our authority, and we must exercise it. When a problem stands in our way, we must speak to the problem and command it to get out of our way in the name of Jesus.
The born-again spirit of man is not the part that doubts. Doubts come to the mind. Therefore, this is another confirmation that the heart, as the Scriptures use it, refers to the whole inner man: spirit and soul (see note 3 at Mt 12:34).
Scripture References: Matthew 12:36-37; Mark 1:42; Proverbs 18:21; Proverbs 6:2; Matthew 10:32, 16:16; Luke 17:5; James 2:17; 1 John 5:4; Romans 10:9; James 5:16; 2 Corinthians 5:19; 1 Timothy 2:5; 1 John 1:5-10; 2:1-2; Psalm 32:1-2, 6.
The awesome God we worship is eager to forgive us, as is revealed in the words of Psalm 103: "As far as the east is from the west, so far does God remove my sin." With these words, he offers us a guilt-free existence. But without acknowledging our sins before God and depending on his mercy to help us change, guilt and shame can constantly plague us. Confession and forgiveness are realities that transform us, and it is a means of healing and transformation for the inner spirit.
Some might wonder why confession is listed as a discipline, since it is possible only through the grace of God. Unless God gives the grace, no genuine confession can be made. But confession is also a discipline because there are things we should do. The Bible teaches us how to confess.
In 1Timothy 2:5, we read that "there is one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus." However, we can also appreciate the teaching to "confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another that you may be healed" (James 5:16). Through confession and the promise of forgiveness, we can look forward to a genuinely changed life.
You have probably heard the saying, "Confession is good for the soul." Why is that?
First key passage: 1 John 1: 5-10; 2:1-2
Have you ever felt like you need to "clean up your life" before turning it over to Jesus Christ? Do you sometimes feel Jesus wants you not for who you are now, but for who you could be? After reading the above passage in the Bible, explain in your own words what it means to you that Jesus is the Advocate, the Righteous One and the Atoning Sacrifice. Sin often comes packaged in ways that make it hard for us to identify. To really appreciate what confession does for us, we need to see what sin does to us.
"Confession is a means for pursuing purity." —Anonymous
In Psalm 32:1-2 and 6 we read: "What happiness for those whose guilt has been forgiven! What joys when sins are covered over! What relief for those who have confessed their sins and God has cleared their record…. Now I say that each believer should confess his sins to God when he is aware of them, while there is time to be forgiven. Judgment will not touch him if he does" (The Living Bible). What is God's part and what is your part in the confession process?
Second key passage: James 5:16
1. How do you feel about this instruction? Relieved, embarrassed, thankful, uncomfortable, not sure what to think?
2. Have you ever confessed a sin to a trusted believer and received prayers? Why did you feel the need to do so? Has anyone ever betrayed your trust?
3. Richard Foster writes:
Confession is a difficult discipline for us because we all too often view the believing community as a fellowship of saints before we see it as a fellowship of sinners. But if we know that the people of God are first a fellowship of sinners, we are freed to hear the unconditional call of God's love and to confess our needs openly before a brother or sister. We know we are not alone in our sin. The fear and pride that cling to us like barnacles cling to others also. We are sinners together. In acts of mutual confession we release the power that heals. Our humanity is no longer denied, but transformed.
How do you feel about this statement?
4. Dietrich Bonhoeffer writes:
A man who confesses his sins in the presence of a brother knows that he is no longer alone with himself; he experiences the presence of God in the reality of the other person. As long as I am by myself in the confession of my sins everything remains in the dark; but in the presence of a brother the sin has to be brought into the light.
What is your reaction?
5. How can confession benefit you in healing past wounds?
6. When you feel the need to confess a sin and seek the support and love of a Christian friend, to whom would you go (what qualities does the person have)?
7. What would you say and how would you react if a Christian friend asked you if he/she could confess a sin to you? How would you prepare yourself?
Final note: Please do not think that God won't forgive us unless we repent of every sin we have ever done. No; we are unable to remember all the sins we have done, but he forgives us anyway. Jesus died for our sins, purchased forgiveness for us, before we were even born. "God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people's sins against them" (2 Corinthians 5:19).
1). Why are we to believe in the power of our words?
2). What is in the power of every word we speak?
3). The mountain symbolically refer to what?
4). What is faith?
5). What is confession?
6). What part of man doubts?
7). When a problem stands in our way, we must do what?
8). What do 1 Peter 2:24 says?
9). Repeat week #5 applications
10). What did the Lord say to Paul in a vision?
Start the Day with God:
This is the day the Lord has made, and I will rejoice and be glad in it. I start every day with God by speaking life, health, strength, and vitality into my body because I know God's healing power is at work within me. The nature and life of God are resident in my body, driving out all manner of sickness and disease. I am strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. I believe the word of God above anything that I think, feel, or see. His Word says that I have been redeemed from the curse of sickness. His Word says that by Jesus' stripes I am healed.
My body is free from pain, sickness, and disease. It operates effectively and efficiently free from malfunction of any kind. Every part of my body is functioning properly. Every organ, gland, and system is operating in conjunction with each other in perfect harmony, which is exactly how God designed my body to work. My immune system is strong, vibrant, and healthy. Germs, bacteria, viruses, and parasites cannot exist in my body. If any sickness or disease makes any attempt to try and attack my body, then it is quickly destroyed by the power of God's Word working in me. I boldly declare that I am healed, healthy, and whole. (Psalm 118:24; Isaiah 53:5; Ephesians 6:10; Galatians 3:13).
Speak to the Mountain: Week # 5
I am not shaken because of bad reports; I choose to believe the Lord's good report. Bad news doesn't faze me a bit because I have learned to trust God and believe His Word even in the midst of challenging circumstances. I don't deny that sickness exists; I just deny it has a right to exist in my body.
The word of men doesn't change the Word of God. I don't deny what the doctor's word says; I just deny that it is the final word, because God's Word supersedes the word of men. I choose to believe God's report that says Jesus paid for my healing as my substitute on the Cross. His report says the law of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. His report says that healing and health are my right and privilege. God's Word says that by Jesus' stripes I was healed, and that is the report I choose to believe. It doesn't matter what the doctor says; I am healed. It doesn't matter what the medical tests say; I am healed. I doesn't matter what my body says; I say (speaking to this mountain) I am healed. God's Word says that I am healed, and I believe it. That settles the matter. Amen. (Isaiah 55:11; Matthew 8:17; Philippians 4:8).
I am strong, and very courageous; I will not fear. I will not let fear impact my life. I am not afraid, because God's Word gives me boldness and audacity. I do not fear the devil, I fear no sickness, I fear no disease, I am not intimidated by sickness and disease, but they are intimidated by my faith in God's Word. My faith and trust in God and His Word destroys the power of fear. God has not given me a spirit of fear but of power, love, and a sound mind of Christ.
I refuse to get stressed out; I refuse to worry or be anxious. I stand firm and fearless in my faith. I will not fear because God is for me, God is with me, and God is in me. When God is for me, then nothing can be against me. Because God is in me, I can conquer anything. I am bold in my faith and I refuse to let one ounce of fear enter my life. I shall not fear, because my confidence is in the Lord. No fear here, in Jesus' name! AMEN. (1 Chronicles 28:20; Isaiah 41:10; 2 Timothy 1:7; John 14:7; Mark 5:36).
We can speak to every mountain in our life, whether its sickness, financial, relationships, family problems, marriage problems, disobedient children, school problems, job related problems, or whatever that mountain is, you can speak to it in Jesus' name.
End the Day with God:
The Spirit of the Lord is on me. He quickens me and gives me strength. In Him I find rest, comfort, and peace. Even in the midst of the storms of life. I am calm, cool, and collected because my mind is focused on Jesus. He keeps me in perfect peace. I have confidence in God's Word, and I trust Him to bring it to pass. I am assured that He will never leave me nor forsake me. I cast all my cares on Him; in obedience to God's Word, I choose not to worry or be anxious about anything. I will not allow myself to be fearful and troubled about any circumstance in my life. Health and healing are mine. Jesus paid the price for them and His Word says they're mine. I have released my faith, I have received my healing according to the promise of His Word, and now all that is left for me to do is rest in Him until the complete manifestation of healing comes to pass. My God has promised to give His beloved sweet sleep. Therefore, I receive a full night sleep every night, and I fully expect to wake up in the morning refreshed, revitalized, and raring to go. (Isaiah 26:3; Deuteronomy 4:31; Proverbs 3:24; Hebrews 13:5)
Discovery: Week # 5……Paul spoke the Word
"One night the Lord said to Paul in a vision, "Do not be afraid, but speak and do not be silent; For I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee: for I have much people in this city."
"Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life."
"These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee."
Reflection Question: What did you learn from this week's study?
Father God, grant me the knowledge I need to speak to the mountain, and with that knowledge understanding, so that I can use wisdom to move mountains out of my life. This knowledge that I have received now I give You praises. I desire to walk in victory just as Jesus did when He walked on this earth, amen.
Reading: Week # 5 Mark chapters 13-15