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Abiding - why men struggle

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Abide and Respond for Men, Invite, Connect, Partner

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Abide & Respond

My oldest daughter was my catalyst in faith. But Men’s ministry gave me my start in ministry. I came to the Lord at the age of 8 in the chaos of a house filled with drugs, physical, verbal, and sexual abuse. I grew up with my mother and three brothers. Mom always chose her needs first. She often chose bad men and drugs.
First a story. I hate yard work. maybe because my dad forced me to do it, or because I don’t actually own my own land yet, none-the-less I hate yard work. I think it is the solitary nature of it. My wife loves yard work. She loves to mow the yard. Call me a traditionalist but this dings my man card. I feel like I should be the one who maintains the yard.
Why should we Abide and Respond?
How do I Abide and Respond?
I struggle with the idea of abiding. It seems passive, it seams lazy. As I study and pray about this idea, I find it is not a sign of weakness but the source strength. Abiding is not a checklist to keep up on. It is easy for me to say “hey do this and that” but Abiding is not a formula. Abiding is a condition of the heart.
These are my rhythms, yours should look different.
I start and end my day in prayer. I also pepper prayer throughout my day. I study the word. I am currently doing the Read Scriptures app for a plan. They have videos! Not every day but a refreshing change of pace. I also listen to the Bible app for the daily reading. I generally do this 3 times a week on the way to the gym. It’s hard to receive from God if you are not in his Word. Enjoying relationships is another way I abide. I am leading a leadership group (we call turbo group). I am also in several mentor relationships and have an accountability partner (I am finding that I can’t change alone). We do a family Bible study at the dinner table. Learning from God is not hard for me. I love the Lord with all my mind. I find it is harder to apply what I have learned and use His strength. I like to read but do not make enough time to do it. I am also starting back to school (seminary) in January. Can I be real with you gentlemen? Honoring God by growing in freedom from sin is hard for me. But you’re a pastor you have to have this faith thing down
Body of message is Chapter 14-16 is a warning against apostacy. This section is practical preparation for his disciples on the way to Gethsemane, These are exhortations and farwells or parting advice.
Now John writes after the other gospels and bats clean up for the other gospel writers.
Have you ever wondered why John is so different than the other gospels? 90% of its content is originals. It is this book that makes hard work for harmonizers. It makes it clear that John had a different intention in his writing.

1 “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser.

What does Jesus mean in vs 1 the true vine?
I looked it up it could be a reference to the vines on the temple that represented Eden. I am reading in Exodus right now and I always wondered what the symbolism of the fruit in the temple referred to. The Bible project helped me see the correlation.
The NIV study Bible the fine is frequently used in the OT as a symbol of Israel. The group of people who were to represent God.

2 “Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bear more fruit.

Does vs 2 mean prepare for pain? The pain of being discarded or the pain of pruning?
THis is a reference to Judgement. The symbol of good fruit represents the produict of a godly life(; ) or virtues of character

3 “You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you.

You cannot bear fruit of itself, This is the lie we buy. We try to bear fruit in our own efforts.
I know I am always struggling in whose strenght I do thing
Trying to bear fruit when removed from the vine is like trying to use a lamp that is not plugged in. It is useless with out power. Why do we try to do this? Another lie we buy is we don’t need God
Trying to bear fruit when removed from the vine is like trying to use a lamp that is not plugged in. It is useless with out power. Why do we try to do this? Another lie we buy is we don’t need God
Work as worship tie?

4 “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me.

Apart from me you can do nothing
I cringe at this verse, but as James (?) says my life is like a vapor, I can’t choose how many breaths I take or the number of hairs (or lack of them) on my head
The believer has no fruitfulness apart from his union and fellowship with Christ a branc out of contact with the fine is lifeless.
Abide = meno used 44 times in the NT mostly by John
85.55 μένωa; ἐμμένωa; ἐπιμένωa; καταμένω: to remain in the same place over a period of time—‘to remain, to stay.’
μένωa: ἐκεῖ μένετε ἕως ἂν ἐξέλθητε ἐκεῖθεν ‘stay there until you leave that place’ ; ἐὰν μὴ οὗτοι μείνωσιν ἐν τῷ πλοίῳ ‘if these (sailors) don’t stay on the ship’ .ἐμμένωa: ἐνέμεινεν δὲ διετίαν ὅλην ἐν ἰδίῳ μισθώματι ‘for two full years he stayed in a place he rented for himself’ .
ἐπιμένωa: ἐπιμενῶ δὲ ἐν Ἐφέσῳ ‘but I will stay (here) in Ephesus’ .
καταμένω: οὗ ἦσαν καταμένοντες ‘(the room) where they were staying’ .
Louw, Johannes P., and Eugene Albert Nida. Greek-English lexicon of the New Testament: based on semantic domains 1996 : 728. Print.

5 “I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.

Louw, Johannes P., and Eugene Albert Nida. Greek-English lexicon of the New Testament: based on semantic domains 1996 : 728. Print.
5. Are you dried up?
The repetition here gives emphasis, this is a living union with Christt that is absolutely necessary without it here is nothing
It would be great to find a dead branch as a message illustration
Could I find a small tree to show what a vibrant looks like?
Amazon or hardware store

6 “If anyone does not abide in Me, he is thrown away as a branch and dries up; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire and they are burned.

6. My words abide in you
these branches probably do not represent true believers. Genuine salvation is evidence by a life of fruitfulness
remember when we used to remember Bible verses in Sunday School?
I remember my brother and I went to a Men’s night at our church and the guys shared the power of remembering verses. i remember being inspired from a guy that would read throught the Bible in a year and every year he would read a new translation. I remember Be courageous and self alert for dont you know your ememy the devil prowls around looking for souls to devours, take courage for your brothers aroudn the world are undergoing the same troubles. (double check)

7 “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.

7. Why should we bear fruit? because it glorifes God and proves us to be disciples.
IT is impossible to pray correctly apart from know an believing the teaching of Christ.
How much I miss the mark in my discipleship
What would Grace community Church look like if the Men took discipleship seriously?
what happens to people who walk away from Jesus? Does Jesus have Judas in mind? Are we Judas? The flock scatter after this .

8 “My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so bprove to be My disciples.

What does it mean for men to abide in love?
I think we confuse masculinity and misunderstand how to love in a masculine way (The Map David Murrow)- See if I can get a physical copy

9 “Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love.

9 “Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love.

10 “If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.

Jesus sets the example
are we keeping the commandments?
Jesus left us with two: Love the Lord your God with all your heart (VS Here)
Love your neighbor as yourself
Throw parties (read Orange conference book)

10 “If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.

11 “These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full.

11. How joyful are we?
The chrsitian way is never dreary for JEsus desire his disciples joy to be complete.
When I hear of this I think of my kids, do they know me as a joyful father or just the industrious hard ass that makes them obey?

12 “This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you

Here is the motivation. Jesus loved us when we were unlovable. We too should love those who we would not naturally love. What does this look like today?

13 “Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.

Ok this has two elements: 1. the obvious we Know Jesus died for us but there is greater meaning here as well. if you follow the timeline closely this section Chapter 11 tells of the conspiracy to kill Jesus which immediately follow the raising the Lazurus. No think of this Jesus was in the business of turning the formulas adn checklists into worthless parchment. Jesus comes and says its not about being perfect, YOU CANT do that. I can do that. power is being usurped adn the religious leaders wont stand for that. What you may not know is Lazurus and his sisters (Martha and Mary) lived close to Jersusalem. Jersusalem is the place where the leaders congregate so going to console/resurrect Lasurus was a death sentance.

16 Therefore Thomas, who is called bDidymus, said to his fellow disciples, “Let us also go, so that we may die with Him.”

So the disciples knew the cost of this trip.

Therefore Thomas, who is called bDidymus, said to his fellow disciples, “Let us also go, so that we may die with Him.”

14 “You are My friends if you do what I command you.

So the disciples knew the cost of this trip.

14 “You are My friends if you do what I command you.

How do you be a friend to Jesus? Follow His commands

15 “No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you.

Rabbinical discipleship would reflect this slave-master relationship. Read they are no longer pupils but now are elevated to the level of friend or peer. Servants follow the orders of the master with out knowing the reason for the orders. This is an obedience but not a full unison with the mission. The disicples are now
A Commentary on the Holy Scriptures: John Exegetical and Critical: Ch. 15:1-27

Friendship with Christ is co-partnery in His loving, self-sacrificing dying-courage in the strength of the thought of self-sacrificing love

16 “You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you.

2 parts we are not bearing fruit for just now, we bear fruit that has eternal consequence. Prayer is powerful expecially when we are asking for things within his Will.

17 “This I command you, that you love one another.

Summary of this fundatmental throught.
A Commentary on the Holy Scriptures: John Exegetical and Critical: Ch. 15:1-27

Brotherly love, concord, unity—are to form the close-banded fellowship of the disciples of Jesus, in which fellowship they may confront the hatred of the world and vanquish it.

New American Standard Bible: 1995 Update. La Habra, CA: The Lockman Foundation, 1995. Print.
The natural question here is how should I respond? You read the second half of John 15 for this but, its not the doing that we as men struggle with, its the abiding, the trusting, the waiting. I am more and more convinced that the more I respond without abiding, the more I am acting in my will on my strength not putting God first but putting myself first.
My challenge to you men is to live abide in God, remain in this love, keep his commandments, share in his joy.
Ok I have heard before, But how does this make a difference?
Vision sheet Experiencing Abide and Respond
I had the privledge to meet with our Men’s leadership in May and we walked through an excersize We took this sheet and rated our Men’s ministry in a 1-10 scale in each area. The responses vaired as personalities and viewpoints are different. At the end of the excersize we alled agreed on focusing on #8.
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