Worrying is the One Bad Habit with No Positive Consequences
Bible Study Objectives:
- To remind us that Solomon overdosed on covetousness which resulted in chronic worry: Ecclesiastes 2:18-19
- To remind us that Solomon warned us about life’s constant change that leads to constant worry: Ecclesiastes 3:1-8
- To remind us that worrying is a normal process, but worrying has never solved a single problem: Luke 10:41, James 1:8
- To remind us that deep Biblical understanding is obtained by diligently searching God’s Word daily: Acts 17:11
- To remind us that worry is useless and prayer is useful when faced with heartbreak: James 4:1-16, Philippians 4:6-7
Bible Study Introduction:
The human soul is made by God and comes into this world in the form of a baby. This little person is born with a soul defect. The soul has a sin virus – Psalms 51:5. This virus renders the person totally helpless in finding lasting peace on the inside where it counts –Isaiah 57:21.
The great physician (Jesus) is the only person capable of repairing this (virus) in the soul – Romans 5:1. This operation is called salvation and the result is permanent peace with God. The soul of man will find no rest/peace until it finds its rest in the forgiveness of God. Not only does God provide peace with God through the atonement of His Son, He also provides the peace of God – Philippians 4:7. While peace with God is a one-time permanent fix, the peace of God for a Christian is like trying to hold on to a wet bar of soap.
About the time you think you have it, it immediately slips from your grasp. The problem is not with God’s peace and joy – John 15:11; the problem is with our poor grip. Is there a secret that will allow us to hold onto thepeace of God regardless of circumstances, other people, things or worry?
The answer is yes and this passage in Philippians contains the perfect antidote to this chronic illness of worry that plagues every Christian. The peace of God requires the right faith, focus, prayer, thinking, living, and the right relationship with God.
The Peace OF God Finds Those Who Replace Worry With Prayer (Philippians 4:6)
The command of “be careful for nothing” (don’t worry about anything) is non-negotiable for the Christian. We know that to constantly worry is a sin – James 4:17 and yet it is so natural and easy to worry, to be nervous, filled with care. The only way to keep from worrying (which never brings the peace of God) is to be injected with supernatural power. This injection is called prayer.
The result of prolonged worry is withdrawal, hesitation, cowardice, depression, discouragement, a defeatist attitude, harmful decisions, physical sickness, emotional problems, distrust, unbelief, and spiritual backsliding.
The result of prolonged prayer is the absolute assurance – Psalms 37:25 that God will provide, guide, strengthen, sustain, deliver, encourage, save, and give real life now and forever. This feeling is called the peace of God and it totally is beyond any human comprehension – Philippians 4:7.
How does this peace of God work? The expression “shall keep” is a military term that means to guard/protect. The peace of God is like a squadron of elite soldiers who guards – protects both your heart and your mind. This security – immune system can only be installed in Christians – John 14:27. Does this mean that a Christian is just to let go and let God take care of his/her future, just to passively float through all the problems of life? NO, a thousand times no.
Notice what Jesus said about a construction project in Luke 14:28-32. Whether a project or a crisis of any description, the Christian is to carefully study the possibilities, and then spend time consulting with wise people –Proverbs 11:14, 12:15, 15:22, 24:6.
We are also to expect God to make a way – Matthew 6:32-33.
We are to remember that God has promised victory in any situation I Corinthians 10:13.
Jesus gently scolded worried Christians in Matthew 6:25-30, but He also provided the practical template for every serious Christian who wants the peace of God. While God puts the worms in the ground, He expects the birds to go get them. While he provides the raw material, He expects the birds to build their nest. Birds get up early and go to work.
The ark was God’s idea, but Noah had to build it. Professionals built the Titanic, while amateurs built the ark. Black cows eat green grass, drink clear water, and produce white milk, but cows don’t give milk. Someone has to go get it from the cows. We are to work as if everything depended on us and pray as if everything depended upon God.
“When we rely upon organization, we get what organization can do, when we rely upon education, we get what education can do; when we rely upon eloquence, we get what eloquence can do, but when we rely upon prayer, we get what God can do.”
Peace follows the hard work of prayer.
The Peace Of God Finds Those Who Learn To Pray Properly (Philippians 4:7)
The Disciples discovered that the “now I lay me down to sleep” prayers don’t accomplish much, and so they asked Jesus to teach them how to pray effectively – Luke 11:1. They wanted to practice prayer that got results. God’s Word is so instructive, it says not to worry (negative), but we are to inform God (positive) of our every request. The word “but” is the eraser of language. It is designed to negate words previously spoken. We are to not use the worry option because it never solves even one problem. We are to constantly pray using this following formula.
- hristians are to pray about everything: Nothing is too big or too small. If anything is bothering you, no matter the size, you are to pray. A pebble in your shoe, a lash in your eye can get your undivided attention. Pray about everything. In all our ways we are to acknowledge God – Proverbs 3:5-6.
- Christians are to pray when they don’t know how to pray: Just like you go to the doctor when you don’t know what is wrong and what medication is needed, we are to go to God when all we have is a pain or a simple request. Note the promise of Romans 8:26. The Spirit helps us to pray; he’s our guide – John 16:13.
- Christians are to pray (communicate with God) continually:I Thessalonians 5:17 contains one of the shortest verses in the Bible, “pray without ceasing.” Paul practiced this as it relates to Timothy – II Timothy 1:3. Prayer is asking and receiving from God. It is simple communication with God. When our prayers go up, God’s blessings come down. Only a fool would say he/she didn’t need to breathe. Only a fool would say he/she didn’t need what prayer provides. Prayer is how I show God that I need him, I love Him, and I adore Him.
- Christians are to pray (supplicate) about specific needs: Supplication is passionate prayer about specific needs/desires – Hebrews 5:7. This prayer is very difficult – Luke 22:43-44. God responds to passionate prayer – James 5:16.
5. Christians are to offer continual thanks to God: The only gift you can give to God is your thanks and praise for all He has done and will do for you. Notice that Daniel had the habit of giving thanks as he prayed daily on his knees – Daniel 6:1-10. If you want it to be well with thee, don’t forget to thank God – Deut 6:3; Deut 6:12; Deut 8:1-20
Bible Study Summary: Worry is a dead fly in the ointment, it just stinks up your whole life – Ecclesiastes 10:1.
Someone wrote: I may never see tomorrow; there’s no written guarantee. And the things that happened yesterday now belong to history. I cannot predict the future and I cannot change the past. I must use this present moment. I must treat it as my last. I must use this moment wisely for it soon will past away, and be lost to me forever as part of yesterday. I must exercise compassion and help the fallen to their feet, be a friend unto the friendless and help make some empty life complete. The unkind things I do today many never be undone, and the friendships that I fail to win may nevermore be won. I may not have another chance on bended knee to pray, and genuinely thank God with humble heart for giving me this precious day – Psalms 118:24; Psalms 116:12,17.
The above lesson was written by Tommy Dowling a Sunday School Teacher for over 40 years.
If God has spoken to your heart after reading the sermon “Worrying is the One Bad Habit with No Positive Consequences” right now talk to God about what He has spoken to you.
Do you have the assurance that one day you will go to heaven? If you have no assurance that you know Jesus Christ, then I trust you will decide to accept Him as your personal Savior. The Bible tells us in
Acts 16:31,“…Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved…”
Romans 10:13,“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
This prayer is here for those who need to ask Jesus to be their personal Savior: “I do want to go to Heaven. I know I am a sinner, and I do believe Jesus Christ died for me. I realize I cannot buy this great salvation, nor can I earn it. Knowing Jesus died on the cross and arose from the grave to pay my sin debt and to purchase my salvation, I do now trust Him as my Savior, and from this moment on I am completely depending on Him for my salvation.”
If you made the decision to accept Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, please let me know. Please send an e-mail to email@example.com and I will send you some literature that will help you in your Christian life.
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In His Amazing Grace,
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