Tag Archives: Bible Teaching

The Cove Honors Pastors for Pastor Appreciation Month

Pastors' Institute John Pope 2014

October is Pastor Appreciation Month! 

What better place for the shepherd to hear God’s voice than in the quiet and peaceful mountain setting of The Cove.

We are pleased to invite pastors and their spouses to attend the Pastors’ Institute event at no charge (program and meals). As an additional blessing, the cost of meals and lodging will also be covered for those who would like to arrive a day early to enjoy some extra quiet time with God.

If you are a pastor, we hope you will allow yourself some time to get away and take advantage of this opportunity. 

If you are not a pastor, but your pastor has been a blessing to you, please encourage them to register for this free event. 

Click here for all the details and register by calling 1-800-950-2092.

Note: Pastors must complete a resource application form to register for this event. Applicant must be actively serving in pastoral ministry (this includes those serving in part-time ministry as well as bi-vocational). Resources will cover Pastors’ Institute registration fee for pastor & spouse and lodging and meal costs for optional Come Early (October 15).

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Kendra’s Bible Study… Nehemiah 5:6-9

Nehemiah
Welcome to Kendra Graham’s online Bible study.  This is a place where we can come together and share in our journey towards Scriptural truths and spiritual maturity.  We pray this will be a safe, respectful, resourceful place to come and discuss God’s Word…to discover What it says…What it means…and What it means to you!

Kendra Graham NOTES from Nehemiah 5:6-9 

WHAT DOES IT SAY? THE FACTS ONLY PLEASE.
In this step you need to list the outstanding facts of the passage. DON’T get caught up in the details, just list the facts. Do not paraphrase. Use the actual words of the passage. This is God’s Word, a lot of times this step seems tedious to some, but I urge you, as we read, and say and write God’s Word, it begins to sink deep into our hearts. If you just pick one fact out of the verse, write it down and meditate on it.

Verse 6: I was very angry when I heard their cry & these words.

Verse 7: a. I consulted with myself, b. contended with the nobles & rulers, held an assembly against them.

Verse 8: We have redeemed our Jewish brothers who were sold, now to sell your brothers to us?  They were silent.

Verse 9: The thing you are doing is not good.  Walk in the fear of God because of the reproach of the nations, our enemies.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN? THE LESSONS.
Look for a lesson to learn from each fact. What are the people doing that they should be doing? What are the people doing that they shouldn’t be doing?

Is there a command to follow? A promise to claim? A warning to heed? An example to follow?

Verse 6: The fact that God’s people were hurting unjustly at the hands of each other, angered Nehemiah.  The hurt of God’s people mattered.  The disunity of God’s people mattered.  Nehemiah was just not in the “business” of building a wall; the actual people were personal to him, as shown by his emotional response.  It was more about the people within the wall, than the wall itself.  Oh that we could truly understand when Jesus said, “I desire compassion over sacrifice.” Matthew 12:7.  It is easier to do stuff in front of people than to actually love the people you are doing it for.

Verse 7a:  Before you go and freak out and rant and rave…. it is always best to consult yourself first.  Then you are not putting down other people, saying things you will regret or making more of a problem than solution.

Verse 7b:  Confrontation and accountability is never easy, but necessary.  Confront the problem head on using the Word of God, not my word.  Don’t let problems and disunity fester no matter who it is you have to confront.  Best to get it over with after the initial anger has subsided. Exodus 22:25 states the nobles and rulers were wrong in what they were doing.

Verse 8: The Truth is stated.  Let the Truth do the convicting, not accusations or finger pointing.  Simply stated the Truth will set you free, but make you miserable first. – James A Garfield
There was no defense or justification on the part of the nobles when confronted with the Truth.  You may not like the Truth, but that does not change the fact of the Truth.

Verse 9:  Confront the issue.  What you are doing is not good.  We already have enemies (basically the rest of the world as we know it) and now to add to that, we are enemies against ourselves?  The reason we don’t do what the rest of the world does and we do not take advantage of our fellow man and brother for our own personal gain, is not because we can’t but because we walk in more fear of God, than man.  We care about what God cares about more than our own selfish gain;  if we do not, then we need to take a hard look at the condition of our soul. God cares about people. The Word of God is delivered, then the choice rests with those who heard.  Matthew 6:24 “NO ONE can serve two masters; for either you will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other.  You cannot serve both God and money.”

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO ME NOW? APPLY IT…. TODAY.
Take the lessons you learned and put them into the form of a personal question that you would ask your spouse, or a friend or your son or daughter.

As you write the questions, listen for God to communicate to you through His Word.

*Do not rush. Do not write things down just to have something on paper, this step takes more time that you may think.   This is where Scripture meditation becomes real, this is where you begin to hear that still small voice speak to you, and place His finger in your life and begin to direct your paths…. this day, and the next, and the next. Do you trust Him enough to put into place that which He is moving you to?

Verse 6: Do I have compassion for the people God has placed in my family? Church? Neighborhood? Daily Life?  Will I take time and ask God to give me compassion for those I run in to daily?

Verse 7a: Am I quick to speak in anger to everyone around, or do I wait until the anger has simmered down?

Verse7b: Do I base my arguments on the emotion of anger, or the fact of God’s Word?

Verse 8:  Do I let the Word of God to the talking, and let God do the convicting, or do I want to point my finger and justify my point of view?

Verse 9: Do I care more about being successful according the standard of the world, or do I care more about what God has set forth in His Word?  Where is my focus? Do I strive to (Leviticus 11:24)  “Be holy as God is holy?” Am I pursuing holiness? (Hebrews 12:14).

LIVE IT OUT!
Lord, convict me according to Your Word.  Give me compassion for your people, and give me the ability to live it out.

Homework: Nehemiah 5:11-13

Get stuck? www.annegrahamlotz.com and Anne will walk through the Three Questions with you and help you along!

What’s Happening at The Cove – October

Whats Coming_October

Autumn is just around the corner and Asheville, North Carolina is one of the most beautiful sites to behold during the “leaf” season.  We hope you will come enjoy God’s colorful display and His sweet presence here at The Cove.

Check out our schedule for the month of October below.  Click one that interests you for more details and to register.

Come and Join Us!

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Click on the links below for October dates or call 1-800-950-2092. 

October Personal Spiritual Retreats

Guided Personal Spiritual Retreat
 with John Parrish, October 29-31, 2014

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Click on each of the links below for more information and to register.  You may also call 1-800-950-2092.

Name Above All Names
 with Alistair Begg, October 6-8, 2014

Prescription for Renewal – A retreat for Medical Professionals Only.
with Erwin Lutzer, October 10-12, 2014

An Evening at The Cove – Dinner, Concert & Meet and Greet
with NewSong, October 12, 2014

SeniorSalt Impact Concert
 with The Burchfield Brothers, October 13, 2014

Pastors’ Institute: Insourcing: Bringing Discipleship Back to the Local Church (Free for Pastors & Spouses)
 with Randy Pope, October 16, 2014

Our Future Hope: Thinking and Living Now in Light of Eternity
 with Randy Alcorn, October 22-24, 2014

Connecting the Dots in Our Lives: Seeing God at Work in Our Problems, Suffering and Pain
 with Mike MacIntosh, October 24-26, 2014

Ministry Workers’ Retreat: A Time of Refreshing
 with Anne Graham Lotz, October 31-November 2, 2014

TC arial fall

The Billy Graham Training Center at The Cove- Aerial Shot of Fall.

 

Kendra’s Bible Study… Nehemiah 5:2-5

Nehemiah

Welcome to Kendra Graham’s online Bible study.  This is a place where we can come together and share in our journey towards Scriptural truths and spiritual maturity.  We pray this will be a safe, respectful, resourceful place to come and discuss God’s Word…to discover What it says…What it means…and What it means to you!

Kendra Graham NOTES from Nehemiah 5:2-5

WHAT DOES IT SAY?  THE FACTS ONLY PLEASE.
In this step you need to list the outstanding facts of the passage.  DON’T get caught up in the details, just list the facts.  Do not paraphrase.  Use the actual words of the passage.  This is God’s Word, a lot of times this step seems tedious to some, but I urge you, as we read, and say and write God’s Word, it begins to sink deep into our hearts.  If you just pick one fact out of the verse, write it down and meditate on it.

Verse 2: “We, sons and daughters and many, let us get grain to eat and live.

Verse 3: “We are mortgaging our fields, vineyards, houses, to to get grain because of the famine.

Verse 4: “We have borrowed money for the king’s tax on our fields and vineyards.

Verse 5: “Our flesh is like the flesh of our brothers, our children like their children. We are forcing our sons/ daughters to be slaves. We are helpless, our fields and vineyards belong to others.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN? THE LESSONS.
Look for a lesson to learn from each fact.  What are the people doing that they should be doing?  What are the people doing that they shouldn’t be doing?

Is there a command to follow?  A promise to claim?  A warning to heed? An example to follow?

Verse 2:  I love that Nehemiah does not leave out the tough stuff.  The book of Nehemiah is so much deeper than just building a wall.  God cares so much more about us than just getting stuff done…. everything is personal, and God works in personal ways throughout the process.  God is working here on the hearts of His people toward one another.  To do the wall project, people had to work, and work hard, all day, and keep watch at night…. so who was maintaining the fields? For awhile, the fields would need to wait, there was a famine anyway, so the fields were not lush and productive…. this meant, there were hungry people.  Were they hungry because they were lazy? No.  There was a famine and a wall to build.  At times like this, is when you come together and help one another get through.  The problem was…. there was no “helping” one another.  There were needy, hungry people working on the wall, trying to do what they could to survive.

Verse 3-5:  Since the fields were not producing, and the work on the wall needed to get done, the people were mortgaging their fields just to try to stay afloat, because regardless of food production the people would be taxed on the land and the food they should have grown. In order to pay the debt, the people had no other choice but to send their children into slavery to pay the debt that is owed.  paying off debt and being good stewards of our money God has entrusted is one thing, but in this case, the land owners (their own people) were exacting the money and placing impossible taxes on things, knowing there was a famine, and knowing about the wall project, and doing this to their own people.  The wealthy within the walls of Jerusalem were looking at the situation with greed in their heart, seeing there was money to be made in the crisis, who cares that they will be required to destroy their own people and friends, it was an opportunity for them to make money. (verse 11)  The people have worked so hard, and come so far, and beat off enemy attacks yet prevailed against it all, yet here, among themselves, without one “shot” fired from an enemy, there is potential for the whole thing to come tumbling down from within.  Is this not the story of so many churches and ministries out there?  We destroy ourselves, no need for an enemy at all.  Jesus tells us:

John 13:35, “By THIS everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you LOVE one another.” Ephesians 4:3 “Make EVERY effort to keep the unity of the Spirit though the bond of peace.”

Unity takes effort.  Do not take advantage of your brother or sisters poor state, instead, fight for them.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO ME NOW? APPLY IT…. TODAY.
Take the lessons you learned and put them into the form of a personal question that you would ask your spouse, or a friend or your son or daughter.

As you write the questions, listen for God to communicate to you through His Word.

*Do not rush.  Do not write things down just to have something on paper, this step takes more time that you may think.   This is where Scripture meditation becomes real, this is where you begin to hear that still small voice speak to you, and place His finger in your life and begin to direct your paths…. this day, and the next, and the next.  Do you trust Him enough to put into place that which He is moving you to?

Verse 2: At work, at school, at church, there are people I interact with every day that are needy, how has God enabled me to bless their lives? (Not forgetting the needy ones may be the little hands and feet you tuck into bed each night…. we get so busy sometimes we overlook those under our nose).

Verse 3-5:  Do I take advantage of people or invest in people?  Do I try to exact things from people because they are a Christian? (This is a Christian dentist, mechanic, doctor… so he should give me this or that for free or at a discounted price?…. this is taking advantage)  Am I quick to turn my back on someone if it is to my advantage? How am I working to keep unity in my home, school, job, church?

LIVE IT OUT!
Lord, give me the eyes to see the need and the heart to love Your people in the unity of the Spirit.

What are your thoughts on this verse?  Please leave your remarks in the comments section below.

Homework: Nehemiah 5:6-9

Get stuck?  www.annegrahamlotz.com  and Anne will walk through the Three Questions with you and help you along!

Join Will Graham As He Teaches on the Book of 1 Samuel

1samuel

By Will Graham 

Epic battles, the prophesied deaths of an entire family, the earthly embodiment of the holiness and presence of God carried away by captors, a nation judged by the Lord – Nobody can say that 1 Samuel 4 lacks action and drama!

Last year at The Cove, I hosted a seminar in which we began the process of working through the entire book of 1 Samuel, verse by verse. We progressed through the first three chapters of 1 Samuel, and things were looking pretty good for Israel. Samuel was being used by God in incredible ways as the Word of the Lord went across the entire nation. We’re told that God did not let a single word of Samuel’s “hit the ground.” In other words, everything Samuel said on behalf of God was impactful and came to be because he only spoke when and what God told him to speak.

Now, when things are going really well, doesn’t it always feel like something negative must be lurking around the corner? You’re on the peak of the mountain, but you’re still surrounded by valleys of darkness. When we return to 1 Samuel for my seminar in August of this year, that’s where we’ll find Israel. Things are turning bad.

You see, God had already spoken against the priest Eli and his family in chapter three, saying He would do something so amazing it would make “ears tingle” in judgment of the sin in the house of Eli, particularly with his two sons.

That fateful day of judgment came in chapter four as the Israelite army went out to battle the Philistines. The battle raged, the Israelites were defeated and lost 4,000 men.

While the soldiers of Israel were tending their wounds and trying to figure out why they suffered such great losses, they had an idea. They would send for the Ark of the Covenant. It was almost like they were treating the presence of God as a magic box that would guarantee military success.

So Eli’s sons took the Ark of the Covenant from the temple into the battlefield, and – in fact – the mere presence of the Ark and the thunderous roar it drew from the Israeli camp did initially intimidate the Philistines. However, they readied themselves for battle.

When the fighting was over, 30,000 soldiers from Israel, as well as Eli’s two sons, were dead. Worse, the Ark of the Covenant was captured by the Philistines. It was a dark, dark day for Israel as the judgment of God fell upon it.

We’re told that Eli was anxiously waiting for word about the Ark; not about his sons, but about the Ark of the Covenant. A weary survivor ran back to Eli and told him his sons were dead and the Ark was captured. When he heard this, Eli – who we’re told was old and heavy – fell out of his chair, broke his neck and died.

His pregnant daughter-in-law, upon hearing that Eli and her husband had died, went into labor and gave birth to a son. The life began to slip from her as well due to complications from the birth, but with her last breath she named her son Ichabod, saying “The glory of God has departed from Israel.”

I know, this is some pretty heavy stuff, but have you ever noticed that we learn more about the love and hope of God as we go through hardship? I believe that will be the case with the lessons we’ll draw from the next few chapters of 1 Samuel.

We’ll look at parenting, for instance. Eli had two sons who were lost in sin, but he didn’t do anything to discipline them and bring them back to God. He’d speak against his sons, but he didn’t deter them. In some ways, he had become as bad as them. He had his choice of meat in the temple and had become spiritually lazy. We’ll look at being a good example for your children and grandchildren.

We’ll also look at the idea of Ichabod. What’s Ichabod in your life? In what ways does it feel like God has departed from you, and how can you get the glory of the Lord back in your life as it was in Israel before God’s judgment on the nation and the family of Eli.

And, of course, we’ll look at the holiness of God. You see, God’s judgment is real, and His holiness is not a joke. When idols were placed in front of the Ark of the Covenant, they fell and physically broke. When people touched the Ark, they died. In fact, the Philistines couldn’t even keep the Ark of the Covenant – their great trophy from battle – because God inflicted their people with tumors just for being near it and possessing it.

There is power in the holiness of God, and this seminar will be an opportunity to hear the Word of the Lord, allow it to work in your life, let it take root and turn you back to Him. We’ll see that God’s love for us compels Him to chase us, even through our own wickedness.

And, spoiler alert, by the time we get to the end of the seminar, the Ark will be back in Israel…

God bless you, my friends –I hope to see you in August!

Click here to register for Will’s seminar at The Cove August 15-17, 2014.

Watch here as Will shares his excitement on teaching from 1 Samuel. 

Kendra’s Bible Study…Nehemiah 4:13-15

Welcome to Kendra Graham’s online Bible study.  This is a place where we can come together and share in our journey towards Scriptural truths and spiritual maturity.  We pray this will be a safe, respectful, resourceful place to come and discuss God’s Word…to discover What it says…What it means…and What it means to you!

Kendra Graham NOTES from Nehemiah 4:13-15 

WHAT DOES IT SAY?  THE FACTS ONLY PLEASE.
In this step you need to list the outstanding facts of the passage.  DON’T get caught up in the details, just list the facts.  Do not paraphrase.  Use the actual words of the passage.  This is God’s Word, a lot of times this step seems tedious to some, but I urge you, as we read, and say and write God’s Word, it begins to sink deep into our hearts.  If you just pick one fact out of the verse, write it down and meditate on it.

13:  I stationed men in the lowest parts, exposed places, in families with their swords, spears, and bows. 

14:  When I saw their fear, I rose and spoke to the nobles, officials and people: Do not be afraid of them, remember the Lord who is great and awesome; fight for your brothers, sons, daughters, wives and houses. 

15: When our enemies heard God had frustrated their plan, all of us returned to the wall, to his work. 

WHAT DOES IT MEAN? THE LESSONS.
Look for a lesson to learn from each fact.  What are the people doing that they should be doing?  What are the people doing that they shouldn’t be doing?

Is there a command to follow?  A promise to claim?  A warning to heed? An example to follow? 

13:  Do not panic, don’t run, be courageous.  Be on guard. Don’t live in denial, know where the weakness lies and fortify!  Nehemiah’s people will not go out looking for a fight, but the people of God will be ready to make a stand if need be. STAND. 

14:  It is important to remember who we serve.  He that is in us (me!) is greater than he that is in the world…. easy to say, hard to believe.  It is important to remember what is at stake as well (our families’ present and future generations).  The STAND you make and the STAND I make TODAY matters! Courage now. 

15:  Often times when the enemy sees it will not be an easy victory, and we will just not hand over the keys to the city and rights to our lives, the enemy will back down and we can get back to work. 

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO ME NOW? APPLY IT…. TODAY.
Take the lessons you learned and put them into the form of a personal question that you would ask your spouse, or a friend or your son or daughter.

As you write the questions, listen for God to communicate to you through His Word.

*Do not rush.  Do not write things down just to have something on paper, this step takes more time that you may think.   This is where Scripture meditation becomes real, this is where you begin to hear that still small voice speak to you, and place His finger in your life and begin to direct your paths…. this day, and the next, and the next.  Do you trust Him enough to put into place that which He is moving you to?

13:  Where has God placed me to make a stand?  What places in my life, in my church, in my family, on the job, need to be fortified?  Do I tend to respond in panic when attacks are imminent or do face them in the power and strength of God’s Word and promises?   

14:  Have I sidelined myself not thinking that what I may or may not do for God matters? When have I made a stand for Christ and when do I wish I had the courage to make a stand for Christ?

LIVE IT OUT!
Lord, help me today, where I am to be able to make a stand for You.  Whether it is with my children as I break up an argument, or at work while my co-workers strike up  conversation, or anywhere I may be.  Give me confidence in Your Word and Your promises as I stand on them today.

Homework: Nehemiah 4:20-23

Get stuck?  www.annegrahamlotz.com  and Anne will walk through the Three Questions with you and help you along!