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Multi-media Worship > Worship Live - Audio/Video

Bear Necessities - Animal Planet: Part 1
Posted by Rev. Jeff Dixon, Senior Equipping Minister at Covenant Community Church on Aug 18, 2002, 20:11
Passage(s): 2 Kings 2:22-25
Topic(s): Persecution

Passage:
22 And the water has remained wholesome to this day, according to the word Elisha had spoken.
23 From there Elisha went up to Bethel. As he was walking along the road, some youths came out of the town and jeered at him. "Go on up, you baldhead!" they said. "Go on up, you baldhead!"
24 He turned around, looked at them and called down a curse on them in the name of the LORD. Then two bears came out of the woods and mauled forty-two of the youths.
25 And he went on to Mount Carmel and from there returned to Samaria.
(NIV)
 

Entrance Ramps:
1. Getting our Bear-ings
(v. 22-23)

Main Points:
1. Bear-able ridicule
(v. 23)
2. Bear-able reality
(v. 24)

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- Healing Grace
- Michael - Prayer
- How Excellent is Your Name
- The Lord Reigns
- Jeff - Opening Comments
- Video - Crocodile Hunter
- Comments cont.
- Jeff - Prayer
- You Are My God
- Immortal Invisible
- Michael - Prayer
- For the Lord is Good
- Michael - Comments
- Lord I Offer My Life To You
- Bear Necessities introduction
- Entrance Ramp
- Main Point 1
- Main Point 2
- Closing Illustration
- Closing Prayer
- Closing Song
 

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- Healing Grace
- Michael - Prayer
- How Excellent is Your Name
- The Lord Reigns
- Jeff - Opening Comments
- Video - Crocodile Hunter
- Comments cont.
- Jeff - Prayer
- You Are My God
- Immortal Invisible
- Michael - Prayer
- For the Lord is Good
- Michael - Comments
- Lord I Offer My Life To You
- Bear Necessities introduction
- Entrance Ramp
- Main Point 1
- Main Point 2
- Closing Illustration
- Closing Prayer
- Closing Song
 

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The Next Step
Welcome to the Next Step…
This week we start our series on the Animal Planet. Out story finds us looking at Elisha and the way that two she bears attacked a gang of thugs that were making fun of God and the prophet. 

If you haven’t listened to the study yet, take the time to do so. In it you will find that I give an illustration on how to survive a bear attack…here is some additional information that I got from a website dealing with bears. It is important to remember as well…

Mmmm hot sauce! Bears can't get enough.
By: Brahm Rosensweig, January 1, 1998
Silly tourist! Put that pepper spray down before you hurt yourself. U.S. Geological Survey ecologist Tom Smith has noted that red pepper spray, commonly used by folks in bear country to ward off aggressive bear attacks, can actually attract bears when sprayed as a repellant on tents, trees, or personal belongings. Sure, it works like a charm if you blast it into the muzzle of that enraged bloodthirsty grizzly bearing down on you, but leftover residues of capsicum oleoresin, the substance that puts the "hot" into hot sauce, seem to enthrall bears the way catnip does cats. Smith noted the phenomenon after witnessing brown bears rolling around on their back, paws skyward, vigorously rubbing their heads in gravel that had been accidentally sprayed with large amounts of red pepper spray. Smith, who had previously spent 750 hours observing brown bears in Alaska, was astounded. Preliminary studies have borne out his observations.

That is important to remember if you are ever attacked. 

Now lets get a bit more spiritual. Bears being used by God, for many, seems unlikely and unusual. As a Bible Teacher I bump into people that always want to argue about the credibility and truth of the Bible. They will say, “I just don’t believe it” Then I counter with the usual, “Well what about it (the Bible) is not true, and how do you know?”

That opens the door to some meaningful conversation, or just frustrates the person I am talking with.

Whatever our philosophy or theology, everyone has moments when we doubt our beliefs and believe our doubts. Even Christians occasionally ask, “Is the Gospel really true?” Anticipating that, Jesus gave us a massive amount of evidence for the veracity of His resurrection and provided “many infallible proofs” that He had indeed risen bodily from the grave (Acts 1:3). It reassures us to know that these “proofs” have convinced even the unlikeliest of skeptics.

Albert L. Roper was a prominent Virginia attorney, a graduate of the University of Virginia and its law school, who eventually became mayor of the city of Norfolk. He once began a thorough legal investigation into the evidence for the resurrection of Christ, asking himself the question: Can any intelligent person accept the resurrection story? After examining the evidence at length, he came away asking a different question: Can any intelligent person deny the weight of this evidence?

One of the most interesting books in my library was written by a man who set out to disprove the resurrection of Jesus Christ. He was an English journalist named Frank Morison who viewed Christianity with disfavor, deciding that if he could prove that Christ’s resurrection was a mere myth, he could debunk all of Christianity.
He poured over the evidence, absorbing all the information he could and marshaling all his arguments. Not only was he unable to disprove the resurrection, but he was compelled on the weight of the evidence to become a Christian himself.
And his book? It is a powerful argument in favor of the resurrection, called Who Moved The Stone? It is “… essentially a confession,” Morison says, “the inner story of a man who originally set out to write one kind of book and found himself compelled by the sheer force of circumstances to write quite another.”

Josh McDowell entered university as a young man looking for a good time and searching for happiness and meaning in life. He tried going to church, but found religion unsatisfying. He ran for student leadership positions, but was disappointed by how quickly the glamour wore off. He tried the party circuit, but he woke up Monday mornings feeling worse than ever.
He finally noticed a group of students engaged in Bible study, and he became intrigued by the radiance of one of the young ladies. He asked her a reason for it. She looked him straight in the eye, smiled, and said, “Jesus Christ.”
“Oh, for heaven’s sake,” he retorted, “don’t give me that garbage about religion.”
She replied, “I didn’t say religion; I said Jesus Christ.”
The students invited him to intellectually examine the claims of Christ and the evidence for Christianity. He accepted their challenge, and after much study and research, finally admitted that he couldn’t refute the body of proof supporting Christianity. McDowell received Christ as his Savior, and his research became the background for his book Evidence That Demands A Verdict.
One of the major factors in his conversion to Christianity was his inability to ignore the historical resurrection of Jesus Christ, a point he made later to a student at the University of Uruguay who asked him, “Professor McDowell, why can’t you intellectually refute Christianity?”
“For a very simple reason,” replied McDowell. “I am not able to explain away an event in history—the resurrection of Jesus Christ.”

Years ago in England, two men set out to disprove Christianity. One was a well-known English jurist and literary scholar named Lord Littleton. The other was Gilbert West. They agreed that if Christianity was to be discredited, two things were necessary: to disprove the resurrection and to explain the conversion of Saul of Tarsus in a way that satisfied the skeptics. The two men divided these tasks between themselves, Lord Littleton taking the problem of Saul of Tarsus and Gilbert West agreeing to research the resurrection. They invested over a year for their studies, then met together again to compare notes. Each one was astonished to discover that the other had become a Christian.

Lew Wallace was a famous general and literary genius of the 19th century who, along with his friend Robert Ingersoll, decided to write a book that would forever destroy “the myth of Christianity.” For two years, Wallace studied in the libraries of Europe and America, then he started his book. But while writing the second chapter, he found himself on his knees crying out to Jesus Christ in the words of Thomas who had himself once doubted the resurrection of Jesus Christ: “My Lord and my God.”
The book he was writing became the great novel about the times of Christ, Ben Hur.
“Why should it be thought incredible by you,” the Apostle Paul once asked, “that God raises the dead?”

From the story of bears that attack to the empty tomb, and even to the return of Christ. God’s word is true, we can trust it, and we can live by it…

Thanks for taking the next step this week, I’ll see you here next week for yet another step as the Animal Planet Series continues…..






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