A. Agreements
B. Turned to God
C. Patience
D. Inclusiveness


• always needing to be right 
• keeping grudges
• focus on self
• without love
• bitterness
• head knowledge but little heart knowledge

It takes time for our thinking to be changed. Thought patterns and paradigms are well entrenched in every fabric of our lives and so it is not surprising that Christ chose to spend three years closely living out his heart (of God) alongside His disciples.

We have the teachings of course, the Sermon on the Mount and the parables, but I suspect that the time spent day by day with Jesus did just as much to change the ingrained thinking of the disciples. Mark 2:15-17

The religious culture was one of pomp and ceremony. Jesus came simply. Those who thought they would be applauded when God came to earth, were chastised. Matthew 23:15 Those who thought they would be excluded were first welcomed and then given important work in the Kingdom of God. Matthew 4:19

Religious system was turned on it’s head with the coming of God to earth:

  • God sat and chatted with the Samaritan woman at the well. John 4:4-42
  • God refused to condemn the adulterous woman to death by stoning. John 8:3-11
  • God accepted his feet being washed and wept over by the prostitute. Luke 7:37-38
  • God established that our neighbour is anyone in need. Luke 10:25-37
  • God reminded us that the sabbath is a gift for mankind and was never meant to be a heavyburdensome thing. Matthew 12:10-12
  • God ate with the outcasts. Matthew 9:10
  • God welcomed and honoured each person. Romans 15:7
  • God healed. Matthew 4:23
  • God raised people from the dead. Luke 7:13-15; Matthew 9:25; John 11: 43-44; Matthew 27:52-53
  • God was moved to compassion and compelled his disciples to enter into the same. Mark 6:34-38
  • God taught forgiveness and mercy. Matthew 5:2-11
  • God did not presume what people wanted, rather, He asked and then responded. Mark 10:51-52

God gave common people a reason to hope — He does the same today.



“Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they
ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven.” Matthew 18:19 ESV

We begin to spot agreements with the enemy and others and we begin to speak God’s truth, but even more so, we live truth. In this others find healing and a touch of God, simply by who we are. We have been talking a lot about agreements.

We agree to God in our midst with words, actions, thoughts, emotions, choices. Every agreement with satan is like signing a legal document in the spirit realm. When we sin we give permission to the enemy to torment us. He has legal possession of our lives in the chronic places of our sin. We change this by coming out of agreement with the enemy, and into agreement with God.

Psalm 1:1 “Blessed is he who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked … 

Matthew 18:19-20 “If two of you agree …

Mark 7:15 “It is not what goes into the body ….

John 8:17-18 “If two people agree / witness …

Micah 6:8 “To act justly, to love mercy … 

NOTE: Take the time to look up these verses.


• false thinking
• lies lived as truth
• bad fruit
• confusion in reasoning
• we are defensive
• layers of denial
• rationalizations (we explain things away)
• blindness to what is really going on
• judgements of other’s sameness of us
• we hate the very thing we are called to be and do

The biggest marker of our agreements being with satan and not God is the bad fruit of our lives.This shows up in chronic ill-health, fragmented relationships, ineffective ministry, and more. Where we have agreed with satan we get death and destructive results.

How we get from one to the other:


Blockage to Good ThingsSeek HelpRepentance
– futility setting in
– desperate for freedom – trying harder
– We come to the end of self
– Yet, may still just want the fixing
–  sees own sin at a heart level
–  takes on 100% responsibility for one’s own life
–  eager to surrender
–  glad to repent


• our entire lives begin to change as a result
• we give over our false belief’s in exchange for what God has to say 
• our hearts are first broken then freed
• pride is shattered
• we come to the end of self
• we take 100% responsibility for our lives
• we systematically and intentionally change our agreements
• we are careful with our agreements
• the life of God pours in
• restoration happens naturally

STORY: Because I had been molested when I was young the Holy Spirit showed me years later that I had made agreements with abuse so to speak. This is how I explain it to my prayer clients. Something happens to us when we are young, and it is as though the enemy whispers a lie

into our hearts, maybe something like, ‘You are only good for being used and abused” and to our childlike thinking we hear this lie (deep in our soul) look around at the circumstance, decide that the lie makes sense, we certainly are being used and abused, and so we take on this lie in agreement. And then, we often live so as to ensure that the lie remains true. What I mean is that we will make choices and will be around the very people who will continue to use and abuse us. We keep the work of the enemy going in our own lives, even long after that first attack upon us.

To be free of the lie and the habits of our life that keep the lie going, we must come out of agreement with the lie. We must renounce it for the lie that it is. We must accept the truth about ourselves.

Now, to someone who has taken on the identity (lie) of ‘I am only good for being used and abused’, that person can put down that identity (lie) and take on new identity in Christ. This is what I did many years ago and it has changed my life in many, many ways.

“God I come to you today in the name of my Lord Jesus Christ. I confess that I have believed and lived the lie that ‘I am only good for being used and abused’, but I say ‘No more!’ to this lie today, I put it at the foot of the cross and I wash it away by the power of your living water and the oil of the lamb. Today I take on a new identity in Christ, I receive the truth into my deepest being that I am loved and cherished, valued and important, cleansed and whole, by the power of the Lord and the work of the Spirit in my life. I am made in the image of God.“



“Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word,
and my Father will love him, and we will come to him
and make our home with him.” John 14:23 ESV

As we turn to Christ our hunger for God overrides our embarrassment, shame or condemnations and in the presence of God we are free to bring our regrets and failures out of our pockets and simply offer them to God.

Christ came, lived a sinless life, died a criminals death, and rose from the dead to completely remove sin from your life. He has done the work. We no longer need to focus on getting rid of sin, but we must learn to turn from sin and toward Christ. We come to him with our worst. This brings opportunity for repentance, brokenness and then healing and freedom. Refuse to turn to Christ with your sin and you will not find healing or freedom.

Luke 5:37-39 “New wineskins …

John 5:38-40 “But the scriptures point to me …

John 6:63 “Human effort accomplishes nothing …

John 15:9 “Remain in my love …

2 Corinthians 3:16-18 “Whenever.. turns to the Lord .. 

Colossians 1:22-23 “You are holy and blameless …

NOTE: Take the time to look up these verses.


  • self righteous
  • obsessive intellectualism (everything HAS tomake sense to us)
  • quick to answer, quick to speak
  • unable to wait on the Lord
  • must have answers
  • little room for ambiguity
  • dogmatic in our thinking
  • focussed on coming clean to God
  • striving, perfecting, making pretty
  • maintaining good (good becomes an idol) 
  • exhausted in our deepest self

The biggest marker of someone who is not turned to Christ is an obsession with being good and perfect. This one has not yet forgiven self or allowed God’s forgiveness to penetrate. They hold out hope to make things right and to be vindicated in this effort. It is futile.

How we get from one to the other:


Failure to be GoodDeep SorrowEase and a New Lease on Life
Marked by:
–  utterly confronted with one’s
own inability to set things right
or the way that one wants
Marked by:
–  releasing denial
–  trusting God for thefuture
–  being turned to the fireof God
Marked by:
–  enters into convictionof God
–  lives broken and glad
–  waiting on God
–  we are drawn to His glory


• we learn that He meets us in compassionate welcome
• there is no thought we cannot take to Him, there is no doubt too big for him
• there is no sin too great for the work of the cross of Christ
• we realize that maintaining our own purity is nothing more than rags and self-deception
• we are transparent in our sin and authentic about our failure
• our sin and failure take back seats to the majesty and glory and keeping of our Lord Jesus Christ 
• we stop trying so hard
• we enter into the rest that God promises his people

“So God’s rest is there for people to enter, but those who first heard this good news failed to enter because they disobeyed God. So God set another time for entering his rest, and that time is today.” Hebrews 4:6-7a

Read all of Hebrews 4

STORY: I had a pastor message me from across the world. He was wanting wisdom and prayer. He had sinned, an adultery, and wanted to talk to me. So we figured out a time to connect over the phone that worked for both our time zones.

I didn’t spent my time asking him the details of his sin, but rather took our few minutes to encourage him to turn to Jesus with the sin. His immediate response,‘NOOO!!’

He couldn’t imagine taking his sin and giving it to Jesus. But this is exactly what the gospel is — we are never instructed to try to self-manage our sin, this is religion and what the Lord came to save us from. If we try to fix our sin ourselves, we will continue to fall back into sin time and again.

Rather, we turn to Jesus and give him our sin. Turned to Jesus we are strengthened by the power of the Holy Spirit to stay free from sin. It is the only way.



“For the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God.” James 1:20 NASB

We begin to understand that we are called to be different and that we are to be lambs among wolves. The way of God is as a small whisper. Consider what Rabbi Sacks explains,

“The meaning … is clear. The zealot takes the part of God. But God expects His prophets to be defenders, not accusers… A prophet hears not one imperative but two: guidance and compassion, a love of truth and an abiding solidarity with those for whom that truth has become eclipsed.“ 85

Patience evidences that we have experienced the vast understanding of God. We do not rush to condemn, we do not rush to judge, we do not rush to fix others — we bear the understanding of God in a way of profound patience and compassion alongside all we know.

Ephesians 4:2 “with patience, bearing with one another … 

Romans 12:12 “… be patient in tribulation …

Romans 2:4 “Don’t you see how patient God is? … 

Galatians 5:22 “But the fruit of the spirit …

Ecclesiastes 7:9 “Be not quick in your spirit to become angry … 

NOTE: Take the time to look up these verses.


• quick to anger
• urgency that is not of God
• impatient and short with people 
• living in ought and should
• a hard edge – no ease
• we believe God is wrath
• we act out this wrath to others 
• we mistake zeal for godliness
• we do not trust God

The biggest marker of a person with little patience is a spirit of condemnation and contempt towards sinners. There may also be a focus on hell. All one sees is darkness with little ability to see light. Without patience we are unable to see God working in other’s lives.

How we get from one to the other:


Bad FruitRealize the Bad Fruit is One’s Own DoingDoing it Differently
–  anger and wrath
–  impatience with selfand others
–  loss of relationships
–  ministry and influencethat becomes toxic
–  we are hurting otherswith our attitude
–  growing humility
–  increasedunderstanding
–  repentance
–  we become okay withfailure / grace for self
– putting self last
–  releasing dogmaticconclusions
–  learning to journeyalongside people
–  mistakes do notfrighten us


• we rest in God’s patient maturing of us
• we receive of God’s generosity of time, resources, thought and attitude towards us 
• we take on his ease and patience
• we walk in step with God, not fearful and frantic, not lagging behind
• we let go our agenda for others
• we become emotionally safe people
• we are okay with failure and mistakes
• we see with bigger perspective
• we trust the Holy Spirit’s work in us and we trust her timing
• pretence is put down
• we enter fellowship with people of the way (Jesus way) in authenticity

STORY: God is more concerned with our heart before him than he is with our perfection and good works. I love the story of Moses and God and when Moses asks to see God. Now, Moses and God had a close relationship. They spoke all the time about many things. And one day Moses told God that he wanted to see him, “Show me your glory.”

And the Bible tells us that God took Moses and placed him in a crevice in a rock wall, and that he put his hand over the crevice to protect Moses from seeing his face (to do so would be to die, due to the holiness of God) but allowing Moses to see the back of God as he passed by.

And as God passed by this is what he called out, “Yahweh! The Lord! The God of compassion and mercy! I am slow to anger and filled with unfailing love and faithfulness. I lavish unfailing love to a thousand generations. I forgive iniquity, rebellion, and sin.” *read all of this in Genesis 33 & 34

Out of all the things that God could have spoken out this is what he chose to say. It is his credentials, so to speak, the core values by which God is and has his being. The patience of God is something to receive for ourselves, his great grace and understanding and mercy, and this patience of God is something to live unto others — for his glory and grace, and our future and delight.



“For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave
me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me,” Matthew 25:35 ESV

One of our primary sins is partiality. We show favor to some and not to others. We judge others according to our definition of what is good or bad, right or wrong and we too easily have contempt for anyone who would do it differently than us. Some we approve and some we reject. We have not learned to love as God loves. And worse, we have learned to hate as the enemy hates. We gossip and reject the outcast, we ignore and neglect the ones who need us the most and we cause others to hate these ones too — God have mercy on us for these terrible evils.

“The opposite of poverty is not wealth, it’s community.” Stephan Bauman @stephenjbauman

Romans 2:11 “For God does not show favouritism …

James 2:1-4 “How can you claim to have faith … if you favor some … 

Acts 10:34 “I clearly see that God shows no favouritism …

John 3:16-17 “For God did not send his son to condemn the world … 

1 John 2:2 “He is the propitiation for our sins …

1 Peter 3:8 “… unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love …

NOTE: Take the time to look up these verses.


• little understanding of sacrifice
• condemnation of those who don’t know God
• arrogance
• sees gospel as private club
• may favour believers while rude to unbelievers
• ego is wrapped up in ministry
• takes things personally
• noticeable leaders and followers – most are not allowed to participate
• favors some kinds of believers and not others
• our comfort is priority
• lack of availability is a source of pride
• ministry is self serving – selfishly used for supporting one’s own self-esteem 
• lots of competing

The biggest marker to a lack of inclusiveness is a rudeness and disregard of unbelievers, with an absolute unwillingness to receive from the giftedness or perspective of those who do not yet know Christ (or believers deemed less than us). These are often leaders who are building his or her own kingdom, rather than the Kingdom of God and is a great evil.

How we get from one to the other:


Crushed by Habits of SelfishnessUndergo Deep Transition of the HeartPours Out for Others
– realizing first hand the hurt of exclusion
– begins to see one’s own bitter hateful heart
– broken relationships
– blocked ministry
–  releases lies and judgements of others
–  grieves over state of own heart
–  becomes broken
–  secret motives addressed
–  welcomes others from the heart
–  judgments cease
–  soft spirit
–  has time for others
–  easy to talk to
–  imperfections are ok
–  no pretence


• all are invited to the wedding feast
• ministry is participatory
• all are to participate in the gifts and life of the Spirit
• God is big, very big, and in His bigness he has room for all people
• our love grows and our hearts have room for those who ‘do not yet belong’ 
• we are comfortable with strangers
• we have bigger perspective
• we see the hearts of people
• self is no longer the center of the universe
• we ask,‘what can I do for you?’
• our unspoken language is,‘I am delighted in you.’
• we listen better
• we make choices that serve others
• we support the ways others are stretching forward to follow the lord
• we are glad when our students surpass us
• we celebrate others
• we see others as people and not as projects

STORY: When Jesus came to earth he made scandal everywhere he went. The religious leaders hated him because he refused to reject people, refused to keep their laws (the religious leaders had been heaping rules and laws upon the people beyond the principles of God).

He ate with sinners, he didn’t wash his hands before he ate, he healed people on the sabbath, he talked to women, he forgave people, he welcomed the outcasts into his ministry team, he spoke and shared with people in the marketplace, he healed any who wanted it, and he gave great value to the common people.

Jesus changed everything we once thought about how the world worked. We must allow this still, today, in our worlds.

85 http://www.rabbisacks.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/CC-5775-Pinchas-Elijah-and-the-Still-Small-Voice.pdf

=> Let’s move forward to our lesson on God’s Worldview

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