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Friday, 19 September 2014

 Teaching Your Daughter Modesty

Scripture: 1 Timothy 2:9-10

God gives us clear instructions for the biblical standard of dress. 1 Timothy 2:9-10 says, "I also want women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, not with braided hair or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, but with good deeds, appropriate for women who profess to worship God."
In modern language, this verse could also read, "I want women to dress in an orderly, well-arranged, decent manner that expresses the self-controlled inner character within her which is lived out in her outward appearance."

What Does God Say?

Write out 1 Timothy 2:9-10 in your own words.
The manner of dress is an indication of what is in the heart. The Bible shows that the inner character of a woman is seen in the way she dresses. "Propriety" is modesty that shows a woman has self-control in reining in her passions and desires.
The Bible tells us that a woman is not to be merely dressed with braided hair or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, for this is just the outward appearance. The heart of modesty is to be complemented by the good deeds that a woman of God performs. Her work is evidence of a godly spirit.

My Thoughts

Which of the following do you think are types of clothes that a modest woman would choose?
  • clothing that reflects an inner beauty
  • clothing that draws attention to private parts of the body
  • clothing that distracts from a woman's testimony
  • clothing that reveals the passions of a woman's heart
  • clothing that she would wear if Jesus were coming to visit
What should a parent do to help their teenage daughters follow biblical standards for a Christian? (See 1 Samuel 26:23Jeremiah 32:19.)
Spend time with your daughter, helping her to evaluate each piece of her clothing by God's standards; teach her to have a heart of submission to the ways of God; help her see the value of living a counter-cultural life that is pleasing to Christ; and lastly, teach her the reward of dressing modestly.

My Part

Are you tempted to give in and keep peace instead of setting the standard? Don't waver because of the culture and the pressure to conform. Keep a firm commitment to follow God's Word and His leading. Be a good example before your daughter.
Which of the following characteristics do you think indicate an immodest heart?
  • ignorance of God's Word
  • indifference to biblical standards
  • desire to draw attention to one's self
  • rebellion to authority
  • resistance to guidance for proper dressing
  • unconcerned about the effect on Christian guys
  • rationalizing that style is more important than character
Ask God today to give you a heart for walking in obedience with all your heart in every aspect of your life. Remember Proverbs 31:30: "Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.

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Saturday, 13 September 2014

By loving the LORD your God, by obeying His voice, and by holding fast to Him; for this is your life and the length of your days,............ Deuteronomy 30:20

Title: A Covenant With Your Eyes
Topic(s): Sex/Sexuality

Scripture: Matthew 5:28, Job 31:1, Proverbs 23:7

A few years ago a soft drink commercial showed a group of young ladies crowded around an upper window in an office building watching a handsome, shirtless construction worker take a break and enjoy a cool drink. Maybe you have felt eyes staring as you strolled down the street or made your way to a table in a restaurant. And, let's be honest, maybe you've done your share of staring too.

The common term for this is "ogling." The younger generation calls it "scoping out." But what does the Bible call it?

What Does God Say?

Jesus says in Matthew 5:28, "But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart" (NKJV).

What does Jesus call "ogling"?
Why do you think Jesus seems to take such an extreme stand? List at least two reasons.
In your opinion, is this primarily a "male-gender" sin? Why or why not?
The Old Testament character Job knew the danger of ogling. In Job 31:1, he declares, "I have made a covenant with my eyes; why then should I look upon a young woman?" (NKJV).

What does the word "covenant" mean? (If you're not sure, look it up in a dictionary.)
What age group would you guess Job might be a part of?
Is age a factor in this sin?

My Thoughts

If you're a female, share how ogling makes you feel. If you're a male, indicate how you think this makes a woman feel and then ask your wife or, if you're not married, another woman how accurately your thoughts reflect their feelings.

My Part

The eyes are an important key to a pure heart. What comes in through the eyes typically is lodged in our minds and becomes a part of our thought life. The writer of Proverbs says, "For as he thinks in his heart, so is he" (Proverbs 23:7, NKJV). Write a covenant that will guide you in the way that you look at someone of the opposite sex. List at least two specific steps that will keep you from the sin of ogling. Set a date to implement the covenant you created.

Additional Scripture to read: 1 John 2:16, James 1:14-15, Proverbs 4:25


Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Fear Without Fear

You've probably seen guys and girls in T-shirts displaying the motto that screams, "NO FEAR!"
Well, that might be a cool attitude to show off if you are a football player or a member of the wrestling team, but it's a dangerous mindset to depend on when it comes to dealing with God. In fact, the Bible tells us, "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction" (Proverbs 1:7, ESV).
What does it mean to "fear" the Lord? Let's see what the Bible has to say about it.

What Does God Say?

The Old Testament prophet Samuel told the people of Israel, "Only fear the LORD and serve him faithfully with all your heart. For consider what great things he has done for you" (1 Samuel 12:24, ESV). Later, King Solomon said, "The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, that one may turn away from the snares of death" (Proverbs 14:27, ESV).
If you are rejecting God or His Word, the fear of the Lord may involve a haunting dread of death, judgment for your sins and eternal punishment to follow. It is the fear of meeting a holy God after an ungodly lifetime. It is the fear that comes from what Proverbs 14:27 calls the "snares of death."
But if you have trusted Christ as your Savior, then the fear of the Lord means reverence for God and a healthy respect for His awesome Person. It's fear relieved by God's love for you and by your confident response of love for Him.
Take a careful look at what Moses told the people of Israel in Deuteronomy 10:12-1420-21:"And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require of you, but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all his ways, to love him, to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and to keep the commandments and statutes of the LORD, which I am commanding you today for your good? Behold, to the LORD your God belong heaven and the heaven of heavens, the earth with all that is in it....You shall fear the LORD your God. You shall serve him and hold fast to him, and by his name you shall swear. He is your praise. He is your God, who has done for you these great and terrifying things that your eyes have seen" (ESV).
Do you see the requirements God gave to Israel--fear God, walk with Him, love Him, serve Him, obey Him, hold fast to Him? His requirements for Christians today are no different. You aren't bound by the Laws of Israel, but by the law of love--and 1 John 4:18 tells you, "There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love" (ESV).

My Thoughts

God promises great blessings and benefits when you fear Him. Here are a few verses that you may look up, then jot down the benefits you discover in the verses.
What benefits of fearing God that you saw in the above verses are most encouraging to you?

My Part

Think about the awesomeness of God. Do you see areas of your life where you should show more reverence and respect for Him? Consider what things you would like to change so that your life better reflects your love and fear of God (for example, your talk at school or in the workplace or your thought life).
If your fear of the Lord is a dread of seeing Him face-to-face someday, you can turn to Christ for forgiveness of your sins, accept His offer of the free gift of salvation and experience His perfect love, the love that casts out fear (1 John 4:18).
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