By Pastor Shana Wise
From July 2021 CWPU Quarterly Meeting Discussion
1. Discord Amongst the Believers
Mark 9:14-18, 25-29
14 And when He came to the disciples, He saw a great multitude around them, and scribes disputing with them. 15 Immediately, when they saw Him, all the people were greatly amazed, and running to Him, greeted Him. 16 And He asked the scribes, “What are you discussing with them?”17 Then one of the crowd answered and said, “Teacher, I brought You my son, who has a mute spirit. 18 And wherever it seizes him, it throws him down; he foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth, and becomes rigid. So I spoke to Your disciples, that they should cast it out, but they could not.”25 Then Jesus saw that the people came running together, He rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, “Deaf and dumb spirit, I command you, come out of him and enter him no more!” 26 Then the spirit cried out, convulsed him greatly, and came out of him. And he became as one dead, so that many said, “He is dead.” 27 But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose. 28 And when He had come into the house, His disciples asked Him privately, “Why could we not cast it out?” 29 He said to them, “This kind can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting.”
· Read Mark 9:14-29 for the whole story
· Prayer and fasting are not emphasized as much as other “activities” in the church. Leaders within the church must make this a priority concerning ministry. Followers of Christ must make the discipline of fasting and praying a priority in their lives.
· One of the enemy’s tactics against the church is to keep us divided, because it causes us to have little or no power over his works.
· The disciples could not rebuke the demon out of the child because they were too busy arguing amongst themselves and the scribes. The reason they could not rebuke the demon, was because the problem was the child’s condition, it was the father’s faith. Before Jesus healed the boy, he had to address his father’s heart (“I believe but help me with my unbelief”). The disciples would have been able to see this factor if they had been praying and fasting.
· Prayer and fasting helps to keep us in tune with the will of the Lord. It also helps us to identify the tactics of the enemy and not to fall into the traps that he has for us.
2. Everyone Wants to Be Great
Mark 9:33-37 Then He came to Capernaum. And when He was in the house He asked them, “What was it you disputed among yourselves on the road?” 34 But they kept silent, for on the road they had disputed among themselves who would be the greatest. 35 And He sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, “If anyone desires to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all.” 36 Then He took a little child and set him in the midst of them. And when He had taken him in His arms, He said to them, 37 “Whoever receives one of these little children in My name receives Me; and whoever receives Me, receives not Me but Him who sent Me.” 15 “Moreover if your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he hears you, you have gained your brother. 16 But if he will not hear, take with you one or two more, that ‘by the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.’ 17 And if he refuses to hear them, tell it to the church. But if he refuses even to hear the church, let him be to you like a heathen and a tax collector.
· Once again, we see that lack of prayer and fasting leads to idleness and confusion. The disciples were more worried about who was “the best one” in the group, not realizing, that Jesus alone is Great, Greater, and The Greatest.
· Pride has a way of creeping into the church and our personal lives if we lose focus on what church is about. Church is about bring glory to Christ and The Father, not ourselves! Pride will also cause us not to be humble, but exalt ourselves against the knowledge of God.
· Jesus commands us to become as little children, why? Because children do not have agendas. Their intentions are pure and their focus is fellowship.
3. Avoiding Confrontation or “The Conversation”
Matthew 18:15-17 “Moreover if your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he hears you, you have gained your brother. 16 But if he will not hear, take with you one or two more, that ‘by the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.’ 17 And if he refuses to hear them, tell it to the church. But if he refuses even to hear the church, let him be to you like a heathen and a tax collector.
· Why is it so hard for believers to have conversations with one another when an offense has happened? I believe several reasons:
2) We allow our feelings to out rule the Spirit of God.
4) Not knowing how to confront in love and gentleness.
· Jesus gives us instructs on how to handle offenses among each other, but we rarely follow them. Unresolved offenses within ourselves and in the church can lead to more compacted problems and issues.
Mat. 18:21-22, 35 Then Peter came to Him and said, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” 22 Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven
35 “So My heavenly Father also will do to you if each of you, from his heart, does not forgive his brother his trespasses.”
· When God tells us to forgive, we must obey. Why? because if we say we know Him, and love His Son, then forgives is in the DNA of a believer. The basis of our salvation is built upon the principle of forgiveness.
· If we have a problem forgiving our brother or sister, then we have missed the reason why we are apart of God’s church. Jesus Christ died for the sins of the world. Through the shedding of His blood, brought forgiveness of our sins against the Father.
· If we have a problem with forgiving, then we need to go back and revisit Calvary.
About the Author
Dr. Shana Wise is an ordained Pastor and CEO of Wise Choice Ministries (est. 2016). She is the founder of The Well Christian Women’s Network formally known as Christian Women Preachers United. Dr. Wise is the author of women’s devotional, Acts of Intercession, and The Impact of Your Election (available on Amazon). She received a Doctor of Divinity degree in 2019 from St. Thomas Christian University. Her passion is to teach and preach the gospel of Jesus Christ, equip others to apply the Word to their lives, and demonstrate the Word through the power of the Holy Spirit. She is a televangelist that appears on social media outlets and television. Shana is married to Ron Wise and is the mother of four children.
Books available on Amazon at:
Acts of Intercession
The Impact of Your Election
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