31 March 2010

Kill or Be Killed Week 1: The Lord Looks at the Heart (And the War Within)

Week 1: Summary
We all have seen it. A man whose life looks vibrant and healthy on the outside is discovered to be rotting and cold on the inside. Indeed we all live with an outer shell and, yet, it is our internal world that determines our course. The battle for our lives is subterranean. It begins in the heart. If we are going kill our sin (Romans 8:13, Col. 3:5) and its effects we must become men who fight on the battleground of the heart.

The theme of David's life: "The LORD looks at the heart"
But now your kingdom shall not continue. The LORD has sought out a man after his own heart, and the LORD has commanded him to be prince over his people, because you have not kept what the LORD commanded you.” (1 Samuel 13:14)

But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the LORD sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.”
(1 Samuel 16.7)
As a lowly shepherd boy with nothing, David's heart was humble, God-glorifying, sensitive to sin and grateful. When everyone around him saw pride and presumption, God looked on David's heart a saw good. And, at the pinnacle of his life, while the world saw success and blessing, God saw a growing pride. David's outward life was not a good measure of his inward state. It was the inward life that led his decisions and it was there that God fixed his gaze.

The same is true for us. There is a day when all that is internal will come to light.

But with me it is a very small thing that I should be judged by you or by any human court. In fact, I do not even judge myself. For I am not aware of anything against myself, but I am not thereby acquitted. It is the Lord who judges me. Therefore do not pronounce judgment before the time, before the Lord comes, who will bring to light the things now hidden in darkness and will disclose the purposes of the heart. Then each one will receive his commendation from God. (1 Corinthians 4.3–5)
So it is sinful, lustful, hateful attitudes that we must put to death. To desire this mortification is the distinctive mark of the presence of the Holy Spirit in the heart. To be unaffected by our sin, without grief at its presence and to allow it to land killer blow after killer blow is very treacherous territory indeed (Hebrews 3:12-15).

And here we begin the battle...

Additional Resources
The Lord Looks at the Heart (And the Battle Within) - the message from week 1
A "Kill or Be Killed" summary page (Including messages, blog posts and a twitter feed with hastag #killorbekilledFC )
An Audio Introduction to "Kill or Be Killed"
A Summary of Mortification of Sin from theResurgence
Purchase Mortification of Sin from MongerismBooks.com
The first two chapters of the book in .pdf
Chapters 3 and 4 in .pdf

Reading Schedule*
March 31st - Chapters 1 and 2 (Discussion Questions)
April 7th - Chapters 3 and 4 (Discussion Questions)
April 14th - Chapters 5 and 6
April 21st - Chapters 7 and 8
April 28th - Chapters 9 and 10
May 5th - Chapters 11 and 12
May 12th - Chapters 13 and 14
*please read the listed chapters prior to each meeting.


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