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Learn to Discern

May 19, 2024

Sermon Summary

Pastor Steve discusses the importance of Christians developing discernment between God's will and Satan's deceptions. He emphasizes the need to recognize and resist Satan's counterfeits in various aspects of life. The sermon explores biblical foundations for discernment and encourages seeking the spiritual gift of discernment. Steve highlights the need to subvert the devil's schemes and rely on God's grace to live according to His will.

Sermon Outline

FCF - Satan counterfeits what God creates in order to deter, deceive and destroy.

Big Idea - Christians can learn to discern what is from God's Holy Spirit and what is from unholy spirits.

1. Everyone needs discernment and some gifted with it.

2. We must work to subvert the devil's schemes.

   (1) Defeat pride with humility. — Ezekiel 28:2 (ESV)

   (2) Defeat rebellion with honor. — 1 Samuel 15:23 (NLT)

   (3) Defeat division with unity. — Romans 16:17-20

   (4) Defeat mob mentality with loving family. — John 18:2-3

(5) Defeat war by choosing peace. — Revelation 12:7-9

3. Beware of the counterfeits that Satan sends into the church.

   (1) False apostles. (2 Cor. 11:13-15, Rev. 2:2-5)   

(2)   False prophets. (Ez. 13:8-9, Matt. 7:15)   

(3)   False teachers. (2 Peter 2:1-9)   

(4)   False doctrines. (1 Tim. 4:1-2, Gal. 1:8, 3:1   

(5)   False elders. (Acts 20:17-38)   

(6)   False brothers. (2 Cor. 11:26, Gal. 2:4)

4. Heal from church hurt and help others heal too.

--> How do we heal from church hurt?

   (1) Determine to resist the devil and invite heaven down.

   (2) Get rid of bitterness by forgiving.

   (3) Cast our lies by believing and telling the truth.

   (4) Replace fight, flight or freeze with faith.

MC Discipleship Guide:

FIRST THIRD = LOOK BACK - Use up to 45 minutes to build community by caring for one another.

1. Opening Question: What's the funniest movie or TV show you've ever watched that never fails to make you laugh?

2. Check-in on everyone. (You can ask about "highs and lows" or "struggles and excitements" or whatever works to get people sharing about their lives with one another.)

3. Pray with and for one another as the Spirit prompts you.

SECOND THIRD = LOOK UP - Take about 45 minutes to review and discuss the Scripture(s) and sermon from Sunday:

4. The sermon emphasized the importance of developing the skill of discernment. What are some practical ways that we develop the skills of discernment in our lives?

5. What schemes of the enemy are you most prone to fall to? Discuss among one another and decide what truths of the gospel are most helpful for the specific schemes the enemy uses against you.

6. Have you ever experience church hurt before? What happened? What did you learn from the situation? Have you fully forgiven? Confess, pray for and encourage one another.

THIRD THIRD = LOOK FORWARD - Take the last 30 minutes to pray and discuss how God is calling each person to live on mission with Jesus through the power of the Holy Spirit in the upcoming week.

7. Is there something specific from the Scriptures, sermon or discussion that God wants you to share with someone in your life? What is it and who does He want you to share with?

8. How will you live out the missional BLESS rhythms in the week ahead?

9. Do you or someone you know have a need that we can serve this week?

*BLESS Rhythms are practical ways in which disciples of Jesus live on mission, empowered by the Holy Spirit in their daily lives.

BEGIN WITH PRAYER: Start each day by praying and listening to the Spirit. Continue listening to the Spirit throughout the day, living surrendered to Jesus as your Savior and King.

LISTEN: Listen attentively to the Spirit's guidance and to those you encounter where you live, learn, work and play.

EAT and/or DRINK: Build friendships with others by sharing meals or drinks together, fostering connections and opportunities for meaningful conversations.

SERVE: Look for practical ways to serve your neighbors, co-workers, and those around you, demonstrating the love of Jesus through acts of kindness and compassion.

SHARE: Boldly share the gospel message and your personal testimony with those you engage with, expressing your faith with confidence and sincerity.