Wayne’s New Book

MDR pictureTo order click here: Just As I Am: Married, Divorced and Remarried

Just As I Am: Married, Divorced and Remarried

My Book may be purchased from me at waynedunaway@gmail.com or call 256-624-6024  or from
http://www.xulonpress.com/bookstore/bookdetail.php?PB_ISBN=9781498421256&HC_ISBN=

Also available at Amazon,
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_c_0_14?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=just+as+i+am+married+divorced+and+remarried&sprefix=just+as+i+am+m%2Caps%2C268

JUST AS I AM: MARRIED, DIVORCED AND REMARRIED

                                  

 Book Summary 

This book is written primarily for those who have been married, divorced and remarried and have come to Jesus for salvation. Many of you have suffered enough guilt, rejection and/or suspicion because a previous marriage did not work out and you have started over in a new marriage relationship.   It is time for healing.  It is time to focus on God’s grace, mercy and peace.  It is time to move on. God wants to give you peace of mind and lasting assurance and this book will prove it.  Jesus, the great “I AM,” accepts us just as we are—even if we are “married, divorced and remarried.”

This book covers a variety of timely subjects such as: What is marriage? What is meant by the two shall become “one flesh?” Is divorcing a mate always wrong? What does the Bible teach about divorce and remarriage?  Are those divorced “still married” in God’s sight?  What is “adultery?” How does God join a couple in marriage? Who can marry? Can one “live in adultery?” What about abusive relationships? Does a deserted believer have to stay single? Can the guilty party remarry?  What about refusing to baptize/fellowship those divorced and remarried? Must couples who have been divorced and remarried in the past, divorce their present mates and live single for the rest of their lives in order to go to Heaven?  What about preachers telling a couple who have been married for over eighteen years with two teenage children that they must divorce? 

These and other questions are answered in this book—Just As I Am…Married, Divorced and Remarried.

Comments from others who have read the book:

From Alabama:

You have really covered all the bases – the great thing about it, other than the fact that it’s biblical and well studied and presented, is the fact that the average person (like the two I’ve been talking to this week) will be able to read and understand! Too many of these books “Greek and Hebrew” the reader to death and leave them with more questions than answers!

I’m loving your book.  I’m nearly finished with it and will recommend it to my church family this coming Sunday. 

The book was a great insight to me. I am a Christian and my husband left me back in September. I was questioning my faith and my preacher gave me your book to read. It really helped open my eyes. Thank you for writing it.

Wonderful book and is so easy to understand—so plain and simple—if people will just read it!”

Thanks so much, Wayne! Great book, wonderful read! I already shared my copy and am sure your book will touch many hearts!

I have found this book to be something that I believe the brotherhood really needs. In the church today, we are lacking Biblical teaching on the subject of marriage, divorce, and remarriage. The real truth in your book would allow more individuals to be led to the Lord as well as help those who have been hurt, abused and misused in the  Lord’s Church to come back home.

From Tennessee:

“This is the best I’ve ever seen!!! There is Grace and Forgiveness for anyone!!”

From Mississippi

“I got it and read it from cover to cover!! I can tell you have done your homework, there were some things I had never thought about before. Right now I am reading it again.  I hurt so much for people in these situations and you have caused me to re-think on some things. I would say it is a very good book, very thought provoking.” 

From Florida;

I read your book in two sittings.  Learned more about the MDR issue than I have in my entire 57 years.  Makes so much more sense than the way I was taught.  Love you so much for having the courage to write a book like this.  

I would like to thank you for writing what I feel is the best book on the subject MDR that I’ve read and I’ve read a number of them. I found it to be the most simplistic and logical but thorough approach to understanding the teaching of God’s idea of marriage and divorce…. I also feel that after reading the book I have a better understanding of the teachings of Jesus in the book of Matthew. 

From Illinois

Your Book: Just As I Am, Married, Divorced and Remarried was very refreshing to me. Having been married, divorced and remarried I have run the gamut of opinions on the topic. My wife and I were told that we were living in sin. When asked how we should correct it, we were informed by some to separate and not live together.

From South Carolina

You make great points and do it in a way that even the “haters” should not complain.  This was a long time coming.  Wish I’d had it years ago to show my dad.  Oh well….. You did a good thing by writing this book, Wayne.  With this book, you are removing much guilt….Thanks again for writing it.

  

Wayne Dunaway has been a serious student of  the Bible for over forty-four years. He is a Preacher and an  Author. His books include A Journey with Jonah, The Lord’s Friend in a Lion’s Den, and Heaven: Where Few…Are Many.  He has a unique way of speaking and writing which will be evident when you read his books.

MDR: Filling the Church with Fornicators

If people believe what you have written in your book on marriage, divorce and remarriage then we will “fill the church with fornicators.

My response to this is here:

FILLING THE CHURCH WITH FORNICATORS

There have been and still are those who hold the view that says that those of us who accept those divorced and remarried for reasons other than fornication on the part of a mate are guilty of “filling the church with fornicators!” This very serious accusation is applied to those MDR couples: who were “unjustly” put away; who suffered “physical abuse” and sometimes “beatings;” and to those whose mate simply “walked out” on the marriage. Therefore this unfounded charge is even made against a great host of “innocent victims” who were mistreated by an unloving and/or abusive mate and have come to Jesus for healing and help. I can appreciate the fact that those who hold this view are only “concerned for the souls” of those involved, but the demands that this view makes on those “souls involved” is of great “concern.” The “souls” involved, in almost all cases, are more “concerned” about their families than they are about the unreasonable, unmerciful, unscriptural, and sinful requirements that this view demands. There are virtually no “souls” who are going to break up their established families and leave their children without “married parents” by divorcing the mates they are committed to in a marriage relationship in order to gain the approval and/or acceptance that this view demands.
This is also a very serious charge made against us in these churches and is one that is not taken lightly nor ignored by many of us. Any view that says a husband and wife who are married to each other and are committed to each other in a loving marriage relationship are “living in adultery” in their marriage is serious business indeed! This is not the teaching of the Bible and, in my judgment, no one can prove that it is. It is a serious charge not only against those MDR couples who have come to Jesus for forgiveness and healing, but also for their children, parents, relatives, friends, and the churches involved in forgiving those who have experienced marital difficulties, mistreatment, mistakes, and/or failures and who have started over in a new relationship. For one to say that a divorced woman, who was beaten and/or abused by her first husband and who divorces him for abuse, then later “remarries” someone else who loves her as a husband should, is “living in adultery” with the man she is “married” to will most likely not be passed over or treated lightly nowadays. Those who make such serious accusations may need to re-think and possibly re-study the whole marriage issue…especially before they “sit on the sidelines” and judge, or “sit up in the stands” and condemn those involved in MDR. Demanding divorce of others or tagging them with slanderous designations if they do not divorce their mates and live single is a heavy load for anyone to take on. In my judgment, there is simply no way for a person to actually study what the Bible really says and conclude that MDR couples are “living in adultery” with each other when they have been divorced and are now committed to each other in a loving marriage relationship. So, in answering this unfounded and very, very serious charge that is made, I offer the following:

No one would deny that most of our churches have some who have been guilty in the past of marital “adultery.” Some in the church in Corinth had been fornicators and adulterers before turning to Jesus. But they had been “washed, sanctified and justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God” and, therefore, they were no longer guilty of adultery and/or fornication. As Paul put it, “And such were some of you…” (See 1 Corinthians 6:9-11).
For Paul to continue to refer to them as “adulterers” or “fornicators” when they had been forgiven of those sins by coming to Jesus for forgiveness would be unthinkable. But according to your view, as well as the view of others (and that number seems to be steadily shrinking as more and more are actually studying for themselves), the Corinthian Church was “full of fornicators” because of their past, and so are a lot of churches today if it is to be defined by the past sins of the members…including the church where I am and, most likely, the one where you are.
I dare say that the majority of us have been guilty of “fornication” in our past before we were married. How would we like it if someone accused us of still being “fornicators?” If this definition is correct and we can count past sins as still existing, then most (if not all) churches I know are filled with fornicators, liars, racists, and prideful hypocrites. The verse in 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 would read, “such are some of you.”

If a husband is told three times to “abide in the state” in which he is called (1 Cor. 7:17, 20, 24) and is specifically told that if he is “bound to a wife, do not seek to be loosed” (1 Cor. 7:27), then he cannot possibly still be classified as a “fornicator” or “adulterer” except by those who totally ignore, overlook, or misunderstand what God has said. Paul did not ask “are you bound” to your “first” wife, or even to your “second” wife, but are you bound to “a” wife.
The real truth could be that in some of our churches we have “filled” them with “fabricators,” whose fabricated view seeks to destroy established families by unreasonable and unscriptural, as well as sinful, demands on others. We have “filled some churches” with views that demand the very thing that God said that He hates, which is divorcing the faithful mates that they are married to! (Mal. 2:14). God “hates” divorcing faithful mates no matter who commands it. This would include any view that seeks to destroy established families by teaching faithfully married couples to “divorce.”
There is no verse in the Bible that says a “married” couple “commits adultery” when they have sex with each other. No verse! No. Not. One. The Bible teaches that the “marriage bed” is “undefiled” for those who are “married.” There is no verse that says a husband commits adultery when he has sex with his wife. I repeat. No. Not. One. See Hebrews 13:4.
The fact that you bring up “Herod” does not help your case in the least and only proves that you most likely have never really studied the issue, other than what you have been told by others. It was not “lawful” for Herod to have “his brother Phillip’s wife,” not because she had been “divorced” according to the “law” she was under, but obviously because the law they were under forbade a brother to “uncover the nakedness” of his “brother’s wife.” (Read Leviticus 18:16). This has absolutely nothing to do with divorced and remarried couples today or even to the divorced and remarried persons under the Law of Moses. There is nothing in the Bible about Herod and Herodias being legitimately divorced and remarried according to the “law of Moses” which clearly “allowed” divorce and remarriage for “uncleanness” when they were given a “certificate of divorce.” (See Deuteronomy 24:1-4). One cannot prove from the Bible that she was divorced according to the Law of Moses (Deut. 24:1-4) and they certainly cannot prove that those MDR couples today are in the same situation or category she was in. There were quite obviously numerous couples who had legitimately divorced and remarried according to the Law of Moses that John did not condemn. For one to accuse those today who have been divorced and remarried under the Law of Christ of “living in adultery” with their present mate because of “Herod’s case” makes about as much sense to me as accusing them of “incest.” If they are going to accuse a married couple of “incest,” then they need to be sure that they know what they are talking about and the same goes for those accusing a married couple of fornication. As a matter of fact, they should just go ahead and accuse MDR couples of “incest” if Herod and Herodias is the example they use for their definition of “unlawful marriages!” But regardless of which “charge” is made–whether fornication or incest–it can carry serious consequences when applied to those who have been divorced and remarried today.
The very idea that you mention concerning a “divorced” woman being still “married” to the husband she “divorced” is absolutely absurd! What on earth does “divorce” do? A “woman” who is “divorced” is not married to the ex-husband she divorced. That is what divorce is. It is the termination of a marriage. For example, a person who is single is not married. That is the reason we say they are single. Being single means that one is not married. There is no such thing as a “single married” person or a “married single” person when used in this sense. One is either married or else they are single. They simply cannot be both “married” and “single” at the same time. In the same way, there is no such thing as a “divorced married” person or a “married divorced” person. One cannot be both at the same time. It is either “divorced” or “married,” but not both. A divorced woman is nobody’s wife unless she decides to marry somebody. A divorced wife does not have a husband. Divorce terminates the marriage. That is what divorce is. In other words, a person cannot be “married’ and “unmarried” at the same time. Paul clearly said that if a wife “departs” from her husband she is to remain “unmarried” (1 Cor. 7:10-11). If some in our churches teach others that the “unmarried” are still “married,” or that the “married” are “unmarried” then we may have indeed “filled some of the churches with foolishness!”
This is no small matter. Those who make such charges need to be aware of what they are doing and saying, as well as who is affected by such slanderous charges. These charges involve some very tender and troubled hearts and real life situations involving real families who love, care about, and are committed to each other in a marriage relationship. For example, here are some real life situations:
A boy got a girl pregnant when he was sixteen years old. Back in that day and time, some parents insisted that the boy and girl get married when this happened. The boy’s father more or less made him marry her. As soon as he got out of school and away from his dad’s authority, he divorced her. He most likely never intended to stay married to her from the beginning. He leaves her, but not for anyone else. Years later, she remarries and has other children with a loving and committed husband in a new relationship. She and her husband become Christians and are bringing their children up in the church. I believe she is faithful….your view says that she and her husband are both “fornicators.”
Another young lady was happily married for a few years and then her husband got hooked on drugs and became violent and physically abusive. She was afraid for her life and the lives of her children. She divorced him and got a restraining order against him. She tried to stay single but she was not gifted for celibacy and finally met a good Christian man who loved her and who was not abusive. She and her husband are Christians who are very involved in church. I believe that this innocent victim of abuse and her husband to whom she is now married are faithful…your view says they are both “fornicators!”
A couple who were in their teens decided to get married. They both were from non-religious families and knew nothing about pre-marital counseling or even the sacredness of marriage. After less than a year together, they both agreed that the marriage was over and both agreed to divorce. Later they each married Christians, had children, and became Christians themselves and are very active in church. I believe that they are faithful…your view says they are “fornicators!” (All four of them!)
A wicked husband murdered his wife who was pregnant. If he gets out of prison, then remarries and later hears the gospel and sincerely turns to Jesus for forgiveness and healing, we all believe that he can be forgiven and continue in his present marriage relationship as a faithful Christian. Another weak husband has a one night stand on a business trip and it is found out. He is sorry and agrees to go to counseling and do whatever it takes to save his marriage. But in spite of his remorse, his wife cannot live with the betrayal and she divorces him and later marries someone else. The guilty man later remarries, then hears the gospel and sincerely turns to Jesus for forgiveness and healing. I believe the view that says he can be faithful to the Lord in the marriage relationship that he is in…your view says that both he and his wife are “fornicators.” There simply must be something wrong with the idea that a “wicked husband” can murder his wife, remarry, and be forgiven and stay in the marriage relationship he is in, while the “weak husband” who was caught up in sin cannot stay married to his present wife. There is nothing he can do about the sins in his past and divorcing his present wife that he is committed to in a loving marriage relationship will not change anything about the past. But it will cause him to sin against his present wife by breaking his promise to her. He cannot undo the divorce and remarriage any more than the other man can un-murder his wife. Any view that makes one better off to murder than to commit fornication makes no sense to me. Most of the people I know have most likely committed fornication at some point in their lives…very few have actually murdered someone.
Surely you can see how unmerciful and ungodly such a doctrine is. All of us are opposed to “divorce” in most cases, but we should not be opposed to “marriage.” Some of you who claim to be against divorce are the very ones who hold a view which demands that married couples get divorced in order to be faithful. Over forty-five years ago, Foy Wallace, Jr. (a highly respected preacher in many of the conservative Churches of Christ at the time and an editor of the Gospel Advocate) called it a “presumptuous procedure” and sharply criticized the breaking up of “established families” by “some marriage-counseling preachers who are so readily disposed to break up marriage relationships that are not in conformity with their own immature human opinions.” (The Sermon on the Mount and the Civil State, pp. 41, 45).
How would those who hold the anti-remarriage view and the view that is actually pro-divorce concerning most remarried couples (that is, the view that insists that most people who are divorced and remarried get divorced again) feel if some held the radical view that concluded from reading 1 Corinthians 6:16-17 that the sex act constituted the “one flesh” relationship of marriage and therefore we are all “married” to the first person with whom we had sex. (I have actually known people who held this view, believe it or not.) Since so many of us have committed fornication before we were married with someone other than our present mates, we are therefore not married to our present mates but “living in adultery” with the one we are married to now, according to this view. They teach our friends, relatives, brethren, and our children that we are “adulterers” and “fornicators” and just “living in adultery” with our mates. How would we feel? The answer to this question is: exactly how those “divorced and remarried” feel about the “radical view” among us that unjustly accuses our relatives, friends, and neighbors who have been divorced and subsequently remarrie that they are “fornicators.” Believe me when I say that this is a very, very serious charge that will most likely not be taken lightly by those involved. It is also a charge that cannot be proven by those who are making such serious, insensitive, and slanderous accusations against “married” couples who love each other and are committed to each other in a marriage relationship! The days of just sitting on the sideline and “condemning the guiltless” without suffering the consequences could be over!
I know this may sound like I am personally upset with those individuals who make such charges, but that is really not the case. I even respect their right to disagree. I realize that most are likely sincere, honest, and care about the souls that are involved in MDR. (If fact, it is most likely easier to convince me of their sincerity than it is to convince those MDR couples that are turned away because of these unscriptural demands.) It is not that they disagree with me. It is that their view condemns them (MDR couples). I have tried (maybe without success) to keep my response from sounding too personal. This is not about you or me. It is the “view” and the “slanderous charge” that I oppose–not necessarily those who misunderstand the MDR issue. The opinions/views of those who believe in breaking up established families and teaching children that their parents who are faithful to each other in the covenant of marriage are somehow “living in adultery” mean little or nothing to me because I know in my own heart and from my own study that those charges are not true. But this view will have a negative effect on many (maybe most) of those who are involved in MDR relationships. I know what I believe and it is in my book. But those MDR couples that are turned away from Jesus by this view are the ones who suffer and the ones we really need to be concerned about. Those established families (especially those with children) that this view seeks to destroy and/or slander are the ones who really suffer. Those influenced by what I believe will “abide in the state” that they are in just as God said to do. (1 Cor. 7:17, 20, 24). If you and others can continue to hold a view that accuses “married couples” of being guilty of “fornication” or “living in adultery” with the ones that they love and are committed to in a “marriage relationship” then you all must live with that…but not me! The churches who are accused of being “filled with fornicators” because we have accepted those who come to us “just as they are in their marriage relationship” are actually “filling the Church” with those who need “healing” and “help.” Most (practically all) of them have been hurt enough already. We are “filling the Church with those forgiven” of past sins and who are just like you and I, except for, perhaps, the nature of our past sins. The view that we hold in these churches that Jesus offers pardon to those in MDR relationships when they come to Him for grace, mercy, and forgiveness is far more in harmony with the love of Jesus presented in the Bible than the view that seeks to “fill the Church” with those who say that Jesus is pleased with “breaking up” established “families” and teaching “married couples” to “divorce.”
God bless you brother and I hope this helps. Thank God for Jesus! (2 Cor. 9:15).

Wayne

A Robe, A Ring, and Other Things


BRINGING OUT THE BEST–A Robe, A Ring, and Other Things!

In the parable of the Prodigal Son in Luke 15, Jesus taught some revealing lessons about the nature of God. One of the things that Jesus did for us is to reveal to us what God is like. One of the ways He did this is by telling earthly stories with deep, spiritual meanings. That is what he did in this parable. One thing this parable teaches us is what God thinks of sinners who come to him. He “runs” out to meet them, and then he “brings out the best” for them and changes them for the better. When the Prodigal came home “the father said to his servants, ‘Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet. And bring the fatted calf here and kill it, and let us eat and be merry” (Lk. 15:22-23). A robe, a ring, and other things.The father “brought out the best” for a son that was unholy, unworthy, and undeserving. And God has done the same for us. Think about it:

 HE BRINGS OUT THE BEST TO US –God gives us everything we have. “Life, breath, and all things” (Acts 17:25). He “gives us richly all things to enjoy” (1 Tim. 6:17). He gives us “every good and perfect gift” (James 1:17). We owe God for every aspect of our existence. But the greatest gift He ever gave was the “best” gift: His Son. The best gift of all was given when God sent his Son to die for us. “Unto us a…son is given” (Isa. 9:6). This was Isaiah’s way of presenting the truth found in the Bible’s most familiar verse: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son…” (John 3:16). He brought out the best of heaven and sent Him to us. God came running to us in the Person of His Son. He brought out the best to us.

HE BRINGS OUT THE BEST FOR US – Because God brought out the best to us, He also brings out the best for us. The Prodigal Son was dressed in a robe and blessed with a ring. He had a garment and an ornament. The father did for the Prodigal what the Prodigal could not do for himself. He extended forgiveness, freely and fully. There was no interrogation, no investigation, and no aggravation. He needed no explanation. All he needed to know was that his boy came home. This illustrates how God accepts us where we are when we come to him. It does not matter how horrible the sins, how many the “hog pens” or how long it has been. He is always ready to run to forgive us and favor us with His presence, pardon, provision, and peace. All I have to do is come “Just as I am without one plea, but that thy blood was shed for me”. Christ “became for us wisdom from God-and righteousness and sanctification and redemption” (I Cor. 1:30).  He brings out the best for us…wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption.

HE BRINGS OUT THE BEST IN US – The Prodigal had a robe and ring and a heart made to sing. The Bible says that “they began to be merry” (Lk. 15:24).  He had a garment and an ornament to help him forget about his past predicament. The Prodigal was given a new life. He was dressed and blessed and ready to do his best. The same is true with us. God brought out the best to us and He brought out the best for us, so that He could bring out the best in us. It is God who works in us “both to will and to do for His good pleasure” (Phil. 2:13). He is “working in” us “what is well pleasing in His sight” (Heb. 13:20). We are “being transformed” by the “Spirit of the Lord” (II Cor. 3:18).

The Prodigal was blessed because his father brought out the best to him (the father’s presence). The Prodigal was blessed because his father brought out the best for him (the father’s provision). The Prodigal was blessed because his father brought out the best in him (the father’s peace). And He brings out the best in us.

With these thoughts in mind, read Isaiah 61:10 which says: “I delight greatly in the Lord; my soul rejoices in my God.  For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.” Note:  He is “my God” because He has brought the best to us (His presence). He has “clothed me with garments of salvation” and “a robe of righteousness” because He has brought out the best for us (His provision). Therefore: “I delight greatly in the Lord; my soul rejoices” because He brings out the best in us (His peace).

How Great is our God?

Mercy received the prodigal son back home …grace rewarded him for coming home. Mercy provided the pardon…grace provided a party. Because of mercy he did not receive what he deserved…because of grace he got what he did not deserve. Thank God for Jesus! (2 Cor. 9:15).

Wayne Dunaway
gandpministries.org

A Real Good Feel Good Church

A REAL GOOD FEEL GOOD CHURCH

The Ohatchee Church of Christ has been (rightly) called a “real good feel good Church.” Although I am not sure that the one saying it meant it as a compliment it is nonetheless true. Of course, we don’t feel good about our sins, or about the lost, or about the pain some in our Church family is going through, or the moral deterioration of our society, or numerous other things, but our members do feel good about being part of the Ohatchee Church of Christ. It is indeed a real good feel good Church and for good reason. (It is much like when we celebrate Memorial Day in our country. We do not feel good about our soldiers having to die, but we do feel good about living in a country that honors their sacrifices. We do not feel good about Jesus having to die, but we do feel good about what His death has accomplished for us.) And why wouldn’t we feel good about this Church? Why wouldn’t we feel good about a Church that is all about Jesus Christ? With us in this Church of Christ it is much more than just a name. It is a Church that is:

A. BUILT by Jesus (Matt. 16:18)

1. According to His eternal purpose (Eph. 3:10-11)
2. According to His personal promise (Mt. 16:18).

B. BOUGHT by Jesus (Acts 20:28).

1. The purchase price (1 Pet. 1:18-20; Acts 20:28)
2. His precious life (Eph. 5:25)

C. BASED on Jesus (Matt. 7:24)

1. Faithful to His word (Mt. 7:24-27).
2. Following His ways (1 Pet. 2:21).

D. BLESSED by Jesus (Eph. 1:3).

1. His Presence among us (Mt. 18:20; Rev. 1:13 & 20).
2. His Power within us (1 Jn. 4:4; Eph. 3:20).
3. His People around us (Jn. 13:35 ).

II. At the Ohatchee Church of Christ we have learned that a Christian does not have to be sarcastic in order to be sound. He does not have to ridicule in order to be right. He does not have to be hateful in order to be faithful. We can teach the right message…in the right manner…with the right members. It is our business to decide what Jesus wants us to do as believers…not decide what He is going to do with other believers. Jesus has not judged us to be qualified…to judge who is qualified. But He has taught us that we should seek to do our best as believers…and let Him deal with the rest of the believers (Jn. 5:22; Rom. 14:4). Since Jesus has sought us and bought us and taught us…His love has caught us. As part of His family we are saved, sure, and secure in Christ. This makes for real good feel good group of Christians. Thank God for Jesus! (2 Cor. 9:15).

Wayne Dunaway
https://gandpministries.wordpress.com/

A Servant Girl Who Changed His World

A Servant Girl (II Kings 5)

A SERVANT GIRL WHO CHANGED HIS WORLD

Introduction: 2 Kings 5:1-3

  1. Most of the time when we study from Second Kings chapter five we concentrate on Naaman and his cleansing.
  2. He was a man who was “captain of the host of the king of Syria” (2 Kings 5:1). He learned from a little Israelite maid that he could go over to Elisha the prophet in Israel and be cured of his leprosy. He went and was cured (2 Kings 5:2-3).
  3. Many lessons have been preached about Naaman having to dip seven times in Jordan before his “flesh came again like unto the flesh of a little child” (2 Kings 5:14). One preacher had a sermon entitled, “Seven Ducks In A Muddy River.”
  4. However, in this study I want us to concentrate on the little maid who told him about the prophet in Israel who would cure him of his leprosy.
  5. While we do not know her name, we do know some things about her nature. We don’t know her family, but we do know something about her faith.
  6. She served his wife and helped change his life. She was a servant girl.. who changed his world. She was God’s helper for Naaman the leper.
  7. In this study we will notice three things about her:
  8. Her Contentment.
  9. Her Confidence.

III. Her Concern.

  1. HER CONTENTMENT (5:2). She was a contented captive.
  2. The text says, “She waited on Naaman’s wife.”
  3. She could have been bitter and refused to serve Naaman’s wife. I mean, after all, she had been “brought away” out of her homeland and was a “captive” in a strange land. Most would say she surely had a right to be bitter and resentful in that situation.
  4. However, she made the best of the situation rather than letting the situation make the best of her. She had gotten a lemon in life, but she made the best of it.

Turn failure into victory, don’t let your courage fade

And when you get a lemon, just make some lemonade.

  1. She reminds us of Joseph, who although he was a captive in Potipher’s house, “served him; and he made him overseer over his house, and all that he had he put into his hand” (Gen. 39:4). Later, when he was falsely accused and put into prison even then, he acted in such a way that “the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph’s hand all the prisoners that were in the prison.” (Gen. 39:22).
  2. She reminds us of Daniel, who even though he was a captive in Babylon, made the best of his situation and was highly respected by both the Babylonian and Persian governments (Daniel 1-6).
  3. She reminds us of Paul who, even though he was a prisoner, wrote to the Philippians saying “I have learned in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content” (Phil. 4:11).
  4. Of course, it was the Lord’s presence and providence that helped them be content in those situations (Psalm 46:1; Gen. 39:2-3; 21-23; Dan. 1:9; Phil. 4:13).
  5. But notice that Paul says that contentment is something we learn. He said, “I have learned in whatsoever state I am therewith to be content” (Phil. 4:11).
  6. One of the things that will help us learn content­ment is to realize that “all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose” (Rom. 8:28).
  7. We also need to learn to count our blessings instead of our bruises.

When upon life’s billows you are tempest tossed

When you are discouraged thinking all is lost.

Count your many blessings, name them one by one,

 And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.

  1. Into each life some rain must fall, but God’s still with us and He’s over all.
  2. Not only do we have many physical blessings to count, but we have far more and far greater spiritual blessings than the little Israelite maid had (Eph.1:3; Heb. 8:6; 11:40).
  3. We need more members like this maid. We need more Christians like this captive. We need more saints in the world like this little servant girl (Heb. 13:5-6).
  4. She was willing to be a “Helper for a Leper” because she was content.
  5. HER CONFIDENCE (5:3). She was a confident captive.
  6. In verse three we learn that she was confident. She said that if Naaman were with the prophet in Samaria he “would recover him of his leprosy.”
  7. Observe that she did not say he “might” or “may” or “should” – she said he “would.”
  8. We do not really know how God got the message to the maid about curing Naaman. We know for sure that God had to tell her in some way (dream, vision, voice, etc…). Why? Because Elisha was not known for healing lepers. In fact, according to Jesus, even though there were many lepers in Israel, none of them were cleansed except Naaman (Luke 4:27).
  9. Regardless of how God got the message to her she believed it. She was confident that God would cure him.
  10. Her faith had come from “hearing” and she helped to provide his “curing.” Like Paul, she could say, “I believe God that it shall be even as it was told me” (Acts 27:25).
  11. We need more members today like this maid. We need more Christians like this captive. We need more people in the church who are fully convinced that God will do what He says. We need more people who know and know that they know. We need more confidence (II Tim. 1:12; I John 2:3; 5:13-14; Heb. 4:16; Rom. 1:16).
  12. She believed that God would heal this leper. Do we believe that God will heal the lost?
  13. She was God’s helper for Naaman the leper. But what about our presence around others? Do we really want to be a helper to those around us? Do we have enough confidence in God and His Word to tell them what He will do for them?

III. HER CONCERN (5:3). She was a concerned captive.

  1. Not only was she contented and confident, she was also concerned. She really cared about Naaman and his condition.
  2. Think about it. Even in her strange position she still cared about his condition.
  3. She was practicing what Jesus taught in Matthew 5:44 long before He came to the earth to teach it.
  4. Like Jesus she was “moved with compassion” when she saw one in need (Matt. 9:36).
  5. Think about how her contentment helped her be concerned about others. She was not thinking only of herself, but also about the needs of others. Had she not been content she would, no doubt, have spent her time thinking about herself and engaging in self-pity and selfishness.
  6. But confidence in God and contentment in life provided the ground for being concerned about Naaman.
  7. In the same book where Paul talked about how he had “learned to be content” (Phil. 4:11), he also said “let each esteem others better than themselves” and “look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others” (Phil. 2:3,4). Why? Because it is being content ourselves that helps us be concerned about others.
  8. In the book of Hebrews the writer talked about confidence (Heb. 3:6), and contentment (Heb. 13:5), and being concerned about others (Heb. 3:13; 10:24).
  9. In the church today we need more members like the maid. We need members who are concerned about the needs of others – especially the spiritual needs.

Others, Lord, yes others, may this my motto be.

Help me to live for others, that I may live like thee.

  1. She was a servant helper for a Syrian leper.

CONCLUSION:

In this study we have focused on God’s helper for Naaman the Leper. She was a contented captive, a confident captive, and a concerned captive. A servant girl who changed his world. May the Lord help each of us to be more like her and more like our Lord in these ways. Thank God for Jesus! (2 Cor. 9:15).

Wayne Dunaway

gandpministries.org

Joseph – His Temptations

Joseph – His Temptations

Introduction:  Genesis 37-50

(1) This is the section of Genesis that deals with the life of Joseph – one of the greatest men in the entire Bible. Genesis chapters 37 – 50 is about Joseph.

(2) About all that many know about him is that he had a coat of many colors (Genesis 37:3).

(3) This is indeed a shame because there is a lot more said in the Bible about his character that there is about his coat.

(4) In this study we want to notice some of the temptations that served to reveal his true character.  Joseph was tempted time and again, but he managed to overcome many of those temptations.

(5) Since temptations are common to us all (1 Corinthians 10:13) perhaps a study of Joseph’s temptations will help us when tempted.  Hopefully, he can give us hope and assurance when we are tempted (Romans 15:4).

BODY:  Joseph – His Temptations

  1. He was tempted at Home (Genesis 37:1-11)
  2. We don’t usually think of home as a place of temptation.
  3. But his brothers hated him, were jealous and envious, and couldn’t speak kindly to him (Genesis 37:4 & 11).
  4. It is always a temptation to do unto others as they do unto you and not “as ye would that they do unto you.” (Matthew 7:12).
  5. But Joseph did not give in to the temptation to strike back – he handled the temptation at home.
  6. Today we have many temptations at home.  We are tempted to say and do things we shouldn’t such as disobey our parents, tempted to neglect Bible study, prayer, and discipline, tempted to fuss and fight with brothers and sisters, and tempted to do a host of other things that are wrong.
  7. But Joseph overcame his temptations at home and so can we.
  8. He was tempted as a Slave.  (Genesis 37:23-36)
  9. He was sold to the Ishmaelites and then to a man named Potiphar as a slave.
  10. He could have become bitter and sour on the world.  He could have turned on everything and everybody. Man is usually tempted toward self-pity and feeling sorry for himself.
  11. However, it seems that young Joseph overcame that temptation too.  He didn’t turn sour but rather seemed to say, “If I must be a slave, I’m going to be a good one.” And with the Lord’s help he was made overseer over all of Potiphar’s house and “all that he had he put in Joseph’s hand.”  (Genesis 39:1-6)  Joseph made the best of his situation rather than letting his situation make the best of him.
  12. Christians today and especially young people, need to learn how to handle situations in life that don’t go exactly like we want them to.  Christianity is not a glorified hayride or a sanctified picnic.  There are going to be disappointments, disease, and difficulties in life. (Job 14:1; John 16:33; 2 Timothy 3:12; James 1:2)  But we must learn to live with them and through them.  (See Philippians 4:11-13)  Joseph made it by the help of the Lord and so can we.
  13. “Turn failure into victory – don’t let your courage fade.  And when you get a lemon – just make some lemonade.”

III.      He was tempted by Potiphar’s wife.  (Genesis 39:7-12).

  1. He was tempted to commit adultery with Potiphar’s wife.  (Genesis 39:7)
  2. The temptation to commit adultery or fornication is very real and prevalent in our world today –especially among young people.
  3. But Joseph, when tempted, “fled and got out.” (Genesis 39:12)   He knew that yielding to this temptation would be “great wickedness” and a “sin against God.” (Genesis 39:9)   He overcame this temptation by fleeing and young people today need to follow his example.  (2 Timothy 2:22;  1 Corinthians 6:18).
  4. Joseph could have used all kind of excuses for yielding to this temptation – i.e.  No one will ever know but us; everybody else is doing it; my parents won’t ever find out, etc.  But he, by the help of the Lord, overcame the temptation.
  5. NOTE:  Young girls need to be sure to take the Bible with you on dates so that if things start getting out of hand you can just lay the Bible between the two of you…. it will be hard for him to get over Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.
  6. He was tempted in Prison.  (Genesis 39:13-20)
  7. Because he refused to commit sin with Potiphar’s wife, Joseph was thrown in prison.  (Genesis 39:13-20)
  8. He had trusted God all long and now he is in prison.  He could have been tempted to distrust God.  He could have thought about how he had refused to sin against God and now look what has happened.  He could have thought about how “my brothers are free, Potiphar’s wife is free, and here I am in jail.”
  9. But he overcame this temptation too because the “Lord was with Joseph.”  (Genesis 39:21).  And he later realized that what had happened had worked out for good.  (Genesis 50:20).
  10. Today Christians, and especially young people, need to know that “all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28.
  11. Therefore, when we are mistreated and are called on to suffer for righteous sake, let’s remember Joseph and how he overcame the temptation to distrust God.
  12.  He was tempted in Prosperity.
  13. There is always the temptations to forget God when things are going well. God warned Israel of this very problem.  (See Deuteronomy 6:10-12).
  14. When Joseph was taken from prison and exalted in Egypt there would be the temptation to forget God.  He was put over all the land of Egypt, by his word the people were ruled, and only Pharoah was greater than he (Genesis 41:39-44).  Surely with this position there would be the temptation to be proud and arrogant and get even with those who had mistreated him.  But he overcame this temptation.
  15. Christians need to realize that popularity, positions, and prosperity in life can cause problems.  In this greatest nation in the world there are plenty who are financially prosperous and many who have prominent positions and many are pretty popular.  But as Christians we must never yield to the temptation to trust the riches and forget about God. (1 Timothy 6:17).
  16. Joseph still thought about God even after he was exalted in Egypt. (See Genesis 41:51-52).  Christians need to remember Joseph if every tempted to forget God today.

CONCLUSION:  In this study we have discussed the temptations of Joseph. And since God gave us the Old Testament for our learning, (Romans 15:4) hopefully we have learned some things that will help us when tempted, especially when we are young. Joseph was also a type of the Lord Jesus in numerous ways. One way is that he saved his people from starvation just like Jesus saves us from our sins when we trust in His sacrifice for our sins and are baptized into His name (Acts 2:36-38).

Wayne Dunaway

gandpministries.org

Posted by Wayne’s blog / A Closer Walk at 5:01 PM

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