Ebenezer Baptist Church Ebenezer Baptist Church
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Noon Day Bible Study
Rev. Dr. Howard L. Woods, Jr.
Rev. Dr. Howard L. Woods, Jr.
Tuesday, May 10, 2022
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Demonstrate A Fully Obedient Faith 

Reject Substitutes for Faith in the Lord

Judges 2:19 And it came to pass, when the judge was dead, that they reverted and behaved more corruptly than their fathers, by following other gods, to serve them and bow down to them. They did not cease from their own doings nor from their stubborn way.

Judges 2:20 Then the anger of the Lord was hot against Israel; and He said, “Because this nation has transgressed My covenant which I commanded their fathers, and has not heeded My voice, Judges 2:21 I also will no longer drive out before them any of the nations which Joshua left when he died, :22 so that through them I may test Israel, whether they will keep the ways of the Lord, to walk in them as their fathers kept them, or not.” :23 Therefore the Lord left those nations, without driving them out immediately; nor did He deliver them into the hand of Joshua.

Because Israel persisted in disobedience, God decided to allow the nations to remain in the land as chastisement upon His people (vv. 20–23).

Punishment for disobedience was not the only reason the Lord did not drive out all the Canaanites. He left them to test Israel (v. 22; 3:4) and to train succeeding generations for war (3:1, 2).

We can gain insight from this as to why the Lord allows believers to go through problems and trials. He wants us to know if “they will keep the ways of the Lord … or not” (v. 22).

This current generation is drifting away from God. Without a knowledge of God and what He has done in the past, what substitute(s) have been made? What is the result?

What does this generation need in order to experience a spiritual breakthrough?

Develop a Mature Faith

1 Corinthians 2:1 And I, brethren, when I came to you, did not come with excellence of speech or of wisdom declaring to you the testimony of God.

The apostle now reminds the saints of his ministry among them and how he sought to glorify God and not himself.

He came to them proclaiming the testimony of God, not with excellence of speech or of wisdom. He was not at all interested in showing himself off as an orator or philosopher. This shows that the Apostle Paul recognized the difference between ministry that is soulish and that which is spiritual.

By soulish ministry, we mean that which amuses, entertains, or generally appeals to man’s emotions.

Spiritual ministry, on the other hand, presents the truth of God’s word in such a way as to glorify Christ and to reach the heart and conscience of the hearers.

1 Corinthians 2:2 For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified.

The content of Paul’s message was Jesus Christ and Him crucified.

Jesus Christ refers to His Person, while Him crucified refers to His work. The Person and work of the Lord Jesus form the substance of the Christian evangel.

1 Corinthians 2:3 I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling.

Paul further emphasizes that his personal demeanor was neither impressive nor attractive.

He was with the Corinthians in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling.

The treasure of the gospel was contained in an earthen vessel that the excellence of the power might be of God and not of Paul.

He himself was an example of how God uses weak things to confound the mighty.

1 Corinthians 2:4 And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power,

Neither Paul’s speech nor his preaching were in persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power.

Some suggest that his speech refers to the material he presented and his preaching to the manner of its presentation. Others define his speech as his witness to individuals and his preaching as his messages to groups.

According to the standards of this world, the apostle might never have won an oratorical contest. In spite of this, the Spirit of God used the message to produce conviction of sin and conversion to God.

1 Corinthians 2:5 that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God. 

Paul knew that there was the utmost danger that his hearers might be interested in himself or in his own personality rather than in the living Lord.

Conscious of his own inability to bless or to save, he determined that he would lead men to trust in God alone rather than in the wisdom of men.

All who proclaim the gospel message or teach the word of God should make this their constant aim.

1 Corinthians 2:6 However, we speak wisdom among those who are mature, yet not the wisdom of this age, nor of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing.

First of all, the wisdom shown in the gospel is divine in its origin (vv. 6, 7). 

We speak wisdom among those who are mature or full-grown. Yet it is not the wisdom of this age, nor would it be wisdom in the eyes of the rulers of this age.

Their wisdom is a perishable thing which, like themselves, is born for one brief day.

1 Corinthians 2:7 But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory,

A mystery is a NT truth not previously revealed, but now made known to believers by the apostles and prophets of the early Church Age. 

This mystery is the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory.

The mystery of the gospel includes such wonderful truths as the fact that now Jews and Gentiles are made one in Christ;

that the Lord Jesus will come and take His waiting people home to be with Himself;

and that not all believers will die but all will be changed.

1 Corinthians 2:8 which none of the rulers of this age knew; for had they known, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.

The rulers of this age may refer to demonic spirit beings in the heavenlies or to their human agents on earth.

They didn’t understand the hidden wisdom of God (Christ on a cross) or realize that their murder of the Holy Son of God would result in their own destruction. 

Had they known the ways of God, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.

1 Corinthians 2:9 But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, Nor have entered into the heart of man The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”

The processes of revelation, inspiration, and illumination are described in verses 9–16. They tell us how these wonderful truths were made known to the apostles by the Holy Spirit, how they in turn passed on these truths to us by inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and how we understand them by the illumination of the Holy Spirit.

Macdonald, Farstad Grady Scott, Hindson, E.E.