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Bridging the Gap

August 17, 2014 Speaker: Jeff Bedwell Series: reFRESH: Familiar Verses, Fresh Insight

Passage: James 1:22–1:25

Bridging the Gap
James 1:22-25

One of the greatest gaps in our lives is the gap between Knowing and Doing

“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock.” (Matthew 7:24, ESV)

Authentic Community is God’s design to help bridge the gap

We were created to be Dependent on God and Interdependent with one another

Why We Need Each Other

1. I Need Others To Walk With Me

“not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.” (Hebrews 10:25, ESV)

• Community is God’s answer to: Loneliness

2. I Need Others To Work With Me

“Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil.” (Ecclesiastes 4:9, ESV)

• Community is God’s answer to: Fatigue

3. I Need Others To Watch Out For Me

“For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken.” (Ecclesiastes 4:10–12, ESV)

• Community is God’s answer to: Defeat

4. I Need Others To Rejoice and Weep With Me

“Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.”
(Romans 12:15, ESV)

“If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together.” (1 Corinthians 12:26, ESV)

“Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.” (1 Thessalonians 5:11, ESV)

• Community is God’s answer to: Despair

5. I Need Others To Witness With Me

“By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:35, ESV)

“Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel,” (Philippians 1:27, ESV)

• Community is God’s answer to: Fear

A Healthy Small Group Is One of the Best Places To Experience Authentic Community!

Connecting To a Healthy Small Group Gives Me:

1. Discipline and Structure

“For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.” (Hebrews 12:11, ESV)

“Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted.” (Galatians 6:1, ESV)

2. Grace and Forgiveness

“Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.” (James 5:16, ESV)

“so you should rather turn to forgive and comfort him, or he may be overwhelmed by excessive sorrow. So I beg you to reaffirm your love for him.” (2 Corinthians 2:7–8, ESV)

The head and the heart work in very Different Ways

3. Support and Strengthening

“And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all.” (1 Thessalonians 5:14, ESV)

“Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” (Galatians 6:2, ESV)

A small group helps bridge the gap between knowing and doing – between information and application.

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