If we are to sucessfully walk in God's call for our lives we must understand the importance of spiritual death ! Without death in our lives ,and even apparent death of the promise, there can be no resurrection power.
(2) From Death To Life.
(ii) THE BDR CYCLE:
A spiritual principle we see throughout Scripture is what we will call the BDR cycle. That is the continual cycle of BIRTH,DEATH and RESURRECTION of the Promise of God.
Jesus is the greatest example of this. He is THE PROMISE and we saw His birth, death and resurrection in the Gospels. The two disciples walking on the road to Emmaus away from Jerusalem had given up concerning their hope in Jesus as the Messiah, come to restore God's purpose to His people, because they couldn't handle his death. Jesus had to open their eyes concerning the fact that it was prophecied that He must die for the fullness of God's purposes to be revealed. It was only after His death that His resurrection power was unleashed.
Now we apply this principle to God's specific promises to each one of us, which also must undergo this cycle...
Group or Individual Activity: Look at The BDR Process and comment how this is seen throughout Abraham's life. What was the promise given to Abraham ? How many times did it seem to have died ? How would Abraham feel at such times ? God did God keep the promise alive in each case ? (You can refer to Abraham's General ProcessOf Calling - it will help).
What is the relevance in our own callings ? Discuss.
There will be cycles of Birth - Death - Resurrection throughout our Christian walk. God will birth His promise in us by revelation but then the situation will seem impossible (dead) for the fulfillment of this promise. As we trust in Him and believe by faith in His promise we will see the resurrection of the promise in His power.
(ii) DEAD ENDS OR DEAD BEGINNINGS ?
In the time where the PROMISE seems dead , impossible, there is a temptation to try to work out the promise by your own effort, in the flesh.
Abraham and Sarah
did just that and the result was Ishmael (See
Instead of being a blessed promise, the result was a DEAD END (Islam comes from Ishmael). This comes from relying on our own Self-Sufficiency.
Instead, God looks for DEAD BEGINNINGS... hanging on in until the promise seems literally dead - but this is where the resurrection power of God is released! Faith when the promise seems dead, joyfully expecting it's resurrection (See Habakkuk 2:1-3; 3:17-18).
Group or Individual
Activity: Look at the the diagram on
Ends or Dead Beginnings ? and discuss it's meaning.
Read this quote and comment on what it means in the light of the above.
Has anyone got a testimony in their own life of a dead end ? Or a dead beginning ? Share it now.
The crucial time in our calling is when the promises God gives us concerning our specific call are challenged. There will come a time when it seems impossible for God's promise to come to pass (contrary circumstances etc..). It is during this time we must hang on in faith and take God at His Word. If we give in and work things out in our own strength we will be led into dead-ends! If we wait expectantly upon the Lord in faith we will be led into a glorious dead-beginning!
Go back to recap and then continue the lesson.