Step 9, Bible Studies

What if.....Premium Content

… Jesus really meant what He said?

"I did not come to condemn, but to save."

Condemn: to declare to be reprehensible, wrong, or evil…to judge unfit for use or consumption.

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus … [Romans 8:1]

What if that were true?

I know—it’s a complex theological statement. But what if it were as simple as “follow Jesus” = “no condemnation”?

What if every follower of Jesus stopped judging others as “reprehensible, wrong, or evil”? Even “those people”—you know, the ones who are, well, “unfit”?

What if

We refused to make—or forward, or approve—snarky political comments?

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Learning to Live as We are Commanded

John 13:35 NKJV
"By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another."

Back in the 60's, when worship choruses first began to become widely popular, a certain chorus made the rounds in the churches, "They’ll Know We Are Christians by Our Love" (common tune, lyrics by Peter Scholtes). The words go like this:

We are one in the Spirit, we are one in the Lord
We are one in the Spirit, we are one in the Lord
And we pray that all unity may one day be restored
And they’ll know we are Christians by our love, by our love
Yes, they’ll know we are Christians by our love

Loving the Unlovable

Matthew 22:37-40 NKJV
Jesus said to him, "'You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.' This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets."

In 1 Corinthians 13, Paul admonishes us to seek love over all things, even over faith:

Putting Aside Arrogance and Embracing Humility

Luke 12:16-21 NKJV
Then He spoke a parable to them, saying: "The ground of a certain rich man yielded plentifully. And he thought within himself, saying, 'What shall I do, since I have no room to store my crops?' So he said, 'I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build greater, and there I will store all my crops and my goods. And I will say to my soul, "Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry." ' But God said to him, 'Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?' So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.">

Kindness and Gentleness

Galatians 5:22-23 NKJV
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.

I've been thinking about kindness and gentleness a lot lately. Probably because being kind and gentle isn't natural to me like it is to other people. I've known a number of people who were constantly kind and gentle. For example, I think about one couple we know, Tom and Linda Marshall. Both of them have always been so soft spoken but willing to step up and help anyone in need. Both so kind and gentle. They always come to my mind as examples of how I should be around everyone else.

Humility is a Two-way StreetPremium Content


Submission
In John 13, Jesus washes the disciples’ feet. It’s a well-known story, a frequently referenced model for Christ’s attitude of humble service to others. But there’s another side to the story.

Foot-washing requires a foot to wash.

In the story, Peter initially refuses to allow his friend and teacher to perform such a menial, degrading task. Jesus replies that submission isn’t optional—it’s an essential element in the interaction.

I don’t think that’s an accident. You can’t force someone to receive an expression of intimacy. If it’s a true act of humble service, the one whose feet are washed must submit.

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Christians Attitudes/Actions Toward One Another

Standing in God's Strength, Not Your OwnPremium Content

Words mean something, and “therefore” is certainly no exception. As the old saying goes, when you come across the word “therefore” in the Bible, take a moment to look back at what preceded it so you’ll know what the next verses are all about.

Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall. 1 Corinthians 10:12

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A.A. Bible Refresher: Steps 8 and 9Premium Content

The making of amends and restoring for things wrongfully taken are rooted in the Bible. And there are particular verses from Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, from the Gospel of Luke, and from the Book of Numbers that provided what Dr. Bob was later to state were the basic ideas studied by A.A. co-founders long before the Steps were written and the Big Book was published.1

Making Amends and Restitution Is a Vital Part of Recovery Fellowships

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Disagreements

1 Corinthians 6:7-11 NKJV
Now therefore, it is already an utter failure for you that you go to law against one another. Why do you not rather accept wrong? Why do you not rather let yourselves be cheated? No, you yourselves do wrong and cheat, and you do these things to your brethren! Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.

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