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The More Abundant Life

Pursuing an authentic relationship with Jesus Christ

By Dan Augsburger

Part 5 of 5 on the More Abundant Life
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1. The Promise of a More Abundant Life
2. Understanding the More Abundant Life
Maintaining the More Abundant Life:


Introduction

We want to discuss maintaining this life through the experience of David bringing the Ark back to Jerusalem.

A. David sent for the Ark:

“So David gathered all Israel together…
to bring the ark of god from Kirjath Jearim.” 1 Chron. 13:5

David’s Experience
  • He loved God.
  • He had good motives
  • He wanted to do a good thing for God.

Your Experience
Seek to have a best friend relationship with Jesus through an intimate daily relationship with God.
This isn’t easy.
  • There are distractions.
  • Pressures of daily life.
  • Discouragement.
  • Easy to miss!
What George Müller said:
Make sure your heart is happy in the Lord should be your first task. (check website for more on Müller’s devotional life)

Bible study & Prayer
  • Make it the first thing of your day.
  • First seek to enter into relationship with God, thanking Him for the new day, inviting him to come into your heart and life and take control.
  • Read the Bible, making each verse a matter of prayer.
  • Meditate on what you have found, making notes if applicable.
  • Pray: for yourself, your day, and for others; asking, then thanking Him for His answers in advance.
  • The amount of sleep definitely impacts the quality of one’s devotional life; the hours before midnight have twice the value of the hours after midnight.


B. David put the ark on a new cart

“So they carried the ark of God on a new cart…” 1 Chron. 13:7

David’s Experience
  • God had given specific instructions in Num 7:9
  • The Ark was only to be carried on the shoulders of a particular family of Levites.

He followed the example of the Philistines in 1 Sam 6:7

David had perhaps sought advice of his counselors instead of reading for himself, or thought the details were unimportant. In any case he ended up doing what the Philistines had done—which God accepted of them since they were living up to all the light they had received up to that time.

David was doing something good, but not in God’s way and therefore presumptuous rebellion on his part.

Your Experience
  • Seek to know God’s will for your life.
  • Satan causes much mischief in this area of life. The great danger is running ahead of God or lagging behind. Satan doesn’t care which ditch we tumble into, as long as we are tumbling into a ditch.
  • Müller’s 4 Steps to knowing God’s will.
1. 90% of knowing God’s will is choosing to have no will of our own.
2. God’s will will never be contrary to Scripture.
3. God’s will is always accompanied by the opening doors of providence.
4. God’s will is always accompanied by His peace (Col. 3:15)


C. The whole group played music and rejoiced in what was going on.

“Then David and all of Israel played music before God
with all their might, with singing, on harps…” 1 Chron 13:8

David’s Experience
  • David and the people with him began praising God for what He was doing.
  • Everyone following everyone else. All of them were in error. Just because others are doing something, doesn’t mean it is right in God’s sight!

Your Experience
  • Seek godly companions
  • Develop meaningful ways to spend time together (study, pray, work for God)
  • Seek a godly life partner (no more important decision; two questions…where and with whom)

Often the professed followers of Christ are found with hearts hardened and eyes blinded, because they do not obey the truth. Selfish motives and purposes take possession of the mind. In their self-confidence they suppose that their way is the way of wisdom. They are not particular to follow exactly the path that God has marked out. They declare that circumstances alter cases, and when Satan tempts them to follow worldly principles, they yield, and, making crooked paths for their feet, they lead others astray. The inexperienced follow where they go, supposing that the judgment of Christians so experienced must be wise. {RH, September 14, 1905 par. 7}


D. Uzza touched the Ark with unconsecrated hands.

“Uzza put out his hand to hold the ark … He struck him… and he died there before God.”1 Chron. 13: 9,10

Uzza’s Experience

God struck him down because though he was trying to help, his hands were not consecrated, nor was he work according to God’s plan. God made him more accountable.

Your Experience
  • Have a daily experience with God.
  • Be careful of what you touch. (your friends, your church, the things that others are doing)

E. David got angry and decided not to move the Ark to Jerusalem.

“David would not move the ark with him into the City of David…” 1 Chron. 13: 13

  • Be sensitive to what God is doing
  • Let the peace of God rule in your hearts (Col 3:15)
  • Don’t allow your relationships to be paralyzed (Jeptha Judges 11:34)
  • Be gentle in your relationships.


F. Obed-Edom receives the ark

“And the Lord blessed the house of Obed-Edom and all that he had.” 1 Chron. 13:14

Obed-Edom’s Experience
  • He received the ark with fear and trembling knowing that another man had just died
  • Because He had a personal relationship with God, and was living up to the light he had, God blessed him.
  • He was also a blessing to the rest of the people—all the people watched him.

Your Experience
  • Follow and make the most of each day.
  • Follow the opening providences of God with gratitude
What a victory you will gain when you learn to follow the opening providences of God with a grateful heart, and a determination to live with an eye single to his glory, in sickness or health, in abundance or want. Self is alive, and quivering at every touch. Self must be crucified before you can overcome in the name of Jesus, and receive the reward of the faithful.--Vol. 4, p. 220.
  • Be open to growing light
  • Make the most of each moment (Sarah at LMC)
  • Make each day and each activity a chance to serve God in an active way (Pray; encourage others)

Suggestions for Pursuing Reformation

1. Accept Jesus as your personal saviour. You cannot possibly be saved by any of your own efforts. Trust Him, His work on the cross is what you cling to all the way.

2. Seek to make Jesus your best friend by having a regular devotional experience with Him.
  • Pray through the Lords’ prayer and ask Him to make it real in your life. (Matt 6: 9 – 13)
  • Pray through Peter’s ladder of sanctification. (2 Peter 1: 5)
  • Pray through the fruits of the Holy Spirit. (Galatians 5: 22-25)
  • Pray through the ten commandments. (Exodus 20: 3-17)

3. Seek to be right before Him by surrendering your life unequivocally into His hands and asking that only His will would be done in your life.

4. Ask Him to show you any person that has something against you and try to make it right.

5. Ask Him to show you any area in your life where you are out of His will. Acknowledge it as such, confess, repent and give Him permission to bring you back in line. Obey as He shows you each step.

6. Let God’s peace rule in your hearts…allow that peace to prompt you.

7. Listen and follow the leadings of His still small voice, making sure that the promptings conform to the voice of His word, His providential leadings and the persistent direction of his way with you.

8. And trust Him in what He is doing. Our greatest problem is lack of trust. Give Him a chance; He won’t disappoint you.