Relationship Studies

What the Bible says about relationships

We Were Made For Relationship

A deep dive into why we were made for each other • January 4, 2018 • Benham Brothers

* God + Adam = not good. * God + Adam + Eve = good. * What was missing? Relationship! * This is why we have the ability to communicate - apart from others who are equal to us (human beings) we cannot relate as God relates in the Trinity. * In the beginning God created “adam” (awh-dahm), not the male but humankind. * “It is not good for “humankind” to be alone.” * vs 17-23 - “she was taken out of man.” * This is the “splitting of the adam,” so to speak. * Feminine was taken from masculine. * The two joined together creates the perfect picture of mankind made in God’s image. * vs 24 - this is why God wants men to “cleave” to their wife - to create the oneness required to give the full picture of God’s image. * Man alone is not God’s full image. Neither is woman alone. * It’s the man/woman bond that creates it. * This is why marriage is under attack today - Satan hates the image of God.

Relationships Thrive on Intimacy

God made us to know and be known • January 8, 2014 • Benham Brothers

3 ordinances of God existed before the fall: 1) Sabbath 2) Work 3) Marriage (this was for intimacy) Two foundational truths: Spiritual truths have physical manifestations & Satan tries to mess up what God sets up 1) God created us for intimacy (to be fully known and fully accepted) - it was a desire of His and not a need 2) The PURPOSE for intimacy was LIFE! As we're intimate with God LIFE is birthed 3) God created a physical manifestation of intimacy when He created woman & Satan wants to thwart this intimacy 4) He made the act of intimacy PLEASUREABLE so we would want to do it often 5) Pleasure overtook Purpose (Gen 6:2) - it's like pornography: it seeks pleasure but not purpose, and the result is a lack of intimacy with the woman God gave to you, but maintaining a ravenous apetite for the act of it 6) When a man and woman are intimate LIFE is seeded 7) Children are a physical manifestation of the LIFE that's seeded in us when God comes into us. Our kids are a perfect mix of two different people and are a product of the LOVE that each person has for the other. Trae is a mix of Jason and Tori and his life proves my love for Tori. Spiritually it's the same - the fruit we bear is a product of the love we have for God and is a mix of God and us. 8) Satan hates this life, so going after the seed. He will: 1) Try to stop the life from taking seed in the first place by convincing men that sex is for pleasure 2) Try to kill the life if it's already taken seed by convincing women that the life that's seeded in them isn't really life. 9) Killing the baby is getting rid of the consequence of seeking pleasure over purpose 10) When you don't have consequences then your behavior will never stop 11) Broken Intimacy (Gen 3:7) - they no longer wanted to be fully known Two issues always manifest themselves when a nation kicks God out: Sexual promiscuity & Child sacrifice (killing kids) So now we see sexual promiscuity and abortion at an all time highs - why? Because we have forsaken our purpose - INTIMACY with God! Satan hates our intimacy with God because he knows it produces LIFE, and he hates our intimacy with our spouses because it does the same - the physical union of a man and woman bringing forth physical life is simply a physical manifestation of what takes place spiritually with human beings and God - LIFE explodes! The devil can't stand that so he not only tries to destroy life itself but he also tries to destroy the very process that brings life into being (sexuality).

The Power of Presence

The secret of three powerful words • January 14, 2016 • Benham Brothers

• Three times times in this chapter Abe uses the phrase “Here I am.” • When God called to him to sacrifice his son, when his son called to him, and when God called to him again not to kill his son. • He was so attuned to God’s voice he could here Him and he was ready for what God would say. • He was also attuned to his sons’ voice. • Wherever Abe was he was “all there.” • I struggle with being “all there” with my kids often times. • If Abe wasn’t “all there” he would have mistaken God’s voice for the devils’. • The secret to the great leader is being a great follower. • Abe followed God and therefore he was equipped to lead his family.

Broken Communication

What to do when we don't understand each other • January 10, 2019 • Benham Brothers

* vs 5-6 - The initiative they had begun with a unified heart was extremely successful. * But it was against God’s plan, so He had to break it up. * How? * vs 7-8 - By causing a breakdown in communication. * God knew exactly what would disrupt their unity and knock them off course. * This gives us a clue of what we need to focus on to keep us on the right course - good communication. * ** Good communication starts with understanding that God brought you together (in marriage or any other relationship). * If you don’t start here you’ll abandon each other when the going gets tough. * These folks abandoned each other when they couldn’t understand each other. * ** You then need to understand you’re wired differently (especially in marriage). * God did this on purpose so you would recognize you need each other. * You then need to seek to understand the person (your spouse) in the same way the church is responsible to seek to know Christ. * Why? Because your marriage is simply a reflection of His. * Communication is hard work, but rewarding work and will keep us unified!

The Necessity of Boundaries

How boundaries make relationships thrive • January 18, 2018 • Benham Brothers

* In Genesis 2:16-17 we see God putting boundaries in place before sin entered the world. * Proverbs 16:17 - “…..even his enemies are at peace with him.” * Enemies can only be at peace when boundaries are honored. * Genesis 31:51-52 - Laban and Jacob could live in peace so long as there was a boundary. * Clearly defined boundaries bring peace between people and nations. * But only if all parties involved willingly stay within them. * You want peace with God? * Stay inside His boundaries. * You want peace with others? * 1) Don’t cross their boundaries. * 2) Don’t erect too broad of boundaries.

The First Blessing

How God instituted family from the beginning • January 5, 2017 • Benham Brothers

* The first mention of “blessing” in Scripture was procreation - the ability and authority to be co-creators with God. * This was the first blessing God gave man as well - we can co-labor with God and bring life into the world. * Side Note - in Genesis 9:6 God involved man in the taking of life as well. * God’s blessings are found within God’s boundaries - procreation is a man and a woman within the context of marriage. * When we remove God’s boundaries then blessings are replaced with burdens. * The first curse was that pain would be involved in this blessing - pain in childbirth. * Malachi 2:1-3 - Because the priests dishonored God their blessings became curses. * The greatest blessing is our kids (procreation) - Psalms 127:3. * Our kids can become curses if we don’t honor God in our homes as priests. * Malachi 2:15 - God is seeking “godly” offspring - not ungodly. * This requires parents to honor God’s boundaries.

The Power of Respect

How to keep and give this valuable core need • January 4, 2018 • Benham Brothers

* Ephesians 5:33 tells us the core need for a man is respect, especially in marriage. * In the NKJV this verse reads - "but [God] did not respect Cain and his offering. And Cain was very angry, and his countenance fell." * God gives all people His respect as a gift because we are made in His image. * But it’s our responsibility to keep it. * Cain lost God’s respect because he didn’t give his best. * When he refused to give his best he lost the thing he needed most. * Such is the case for any man who doesn’t give his all in what he’s doing. * Apply this to your work - do your best no matter how small a task and watch how your boss responds. (God will also receive this as worship). * Apply this to your marriage - give your wife and kids your very best at home and watch how well they respond. * Apply this to your body - give your best to be healthy and watch how your body responds. * Apply this to every other area of life. * Note - in Genesis 4:23 we see a man who had no respect for himself or anyone else and therefore he had to prove himself and get respect through threats. * A man with no self-respect is a man who has to prove himself to everyone.

The Power of Obedience

How obedience paves the way to understanding • January 5, 2017 • Benham Brothers

* Matthew 2:19-22 - When God spoke Joseph moved - he didn’t sit around and ask why, when, or how. * Notice the angel didn’t tell Joseph the specific city he was to go to. * God downloaded the specific city to him after he obeyed. * When we obey one command God gives us another - He gives light as we obey. * If we balk at one point we forfeit His further instructions. * When God speaks we move, but we pay attention to our natural inclinations as Joseph did when he was afraid (vs 22). * God used Joseph’s healthy fear for the protection of his family to help guide him where he was to be. * The key is to WAIT ON GOD - wait for Him to speak. * Genesis 8:13-14 - Noah was in a new place and his family could not wait to get off the boat. * But he didn’t leave the boat until God told him to, but it took time. * It took 57 days for the ground to fully dry. * During this time God was preparing the ground for Noah and his family to flourish. * When God brings you into a new place it takes time - be patient and don’t get ahead of Him. * If Noah left early before God spoke then he would have gotten stuck in the mud.

Broken Intimacy

Satan's three-fold attack plan • January 10, 2014 • Benham Brothers

Gen 3:7 - Sin divided Adam from Eve - it also divided both of them from God. Sin is a divider The formula for how Satan got through to Eve and how he tries to get through to us as well: 1) Distract - he wants to distract us from what God wants for our lives 2) Deceives - his temptations are lies 3) Divide - sin divides us from God and from those we love - it breaks intimacy 4) Destroy - satan wants to rob, kill, and destroy Gen 3:12 - When intimacy was broken God became the problem Just like when Martha blamed Jesus for why Mary wasn't helping her - when we do things for the wrong reasons then the very people we're doing them for become the problem Gen 3:16-17 - Two Curses Adams' work would be hard / Eve's labor would be difficult Both of these things (work and reproduction) were a part of the original plan and therefore would be ways that God would relate with man, but now it would be hard to do both of these things, thus making the path to God narrow Gen 3:21 - The age of grace! So begins the story of God pursuing man and setting him right - it's called redemption and God did it as a gracious God He covered Adam and Eve and didn't kill them - this was mercy and the clothes represented grace

True Mom

A picture of what a true mother looks like • April 13, 2017 • Benham Brothers

* Deborah arose a “mother” in Israel (Judges 5:7). * Notice what she then says in this verse. * “My heart goes out to the commanders of Israel, the volunteers among the people….” * The motherly spirit is a warrior spirit and wants men to step up and fight! * True mothers want fathers to protect their kids. * True mothers in culture want fathers to rise up and protect the family of God.

Parental By Example

Lesson's from Samson's mom • April 19, 2018 • Benham Brothers

* An angel showed up to Manoah’s wife and announced the birth of a son. * Samson’s dad asks what kind of rules should govern the boy’s life and work. * Essentially, “how can I raise my kid the right way?” * The angel responds with a command to the child’s mom: * vs 12-14 - “Be sure your wife follows the instructions I gave her…” * He was to be a Nazarite, but she had to live like one first. * Essentially, the angel said, “Model the type of behavior he should have, like that of a Nazarite, and that will be enough.” * What is “caught” by kids is far more impactful than what is “taught” by parents.

A Good Mom

Observations from Samson's mother • April 20, 2017 • Benham Brothers

* So often when God brings deliverance He does it through people. * He sends a baby, which means He needs a woman. * Observations on Samson’s mom: * 1) We don’t know her name - she wasn’t out for her name, but God’s. * 2) The angel showed up to her, not her husband - even after Manoah prayed for the angel to come back. * She brought her husband into the exchange - she didn’t keep it to herself, trying to build her own thing. * 3) The responsibility was on her - her son was to be a Nazarite, but she had to live it first. * vs 12-14 - “she” had to do it first and model it. * This shows how important she was to the success of her son. * 4) She kept her husband straight - in verse 22 Manoah thought they were going to die because they had seen God, but she snapped him back into line. * God is still using women today - those who have a motherly spirit who are not just training their kids to be faithful but modeling faithfulness for them. * And He will bring about deliverance through women as well.

Dad's Equipping Sons

A lessons from David's father • May 14, 2015 • Benham Brothers

David's dad was Jesse. On two occasions we see Jesse preparing his son for favor: 16:20 - giving him food for the king. 17:18 - giving him food for the commander of the army. Jesse wasn't going to let his boy go to the king or the commander empty handed. Jesse taught his boy to be a producer and not a consumer. He taught David how to lead with value. David learned how to be faithful in the little while tending his dad's sheep - it was his dad's business! David learned how to be about his father's business. Then, after David defeated Goliath, notice how Saul responded in 17:58. David had a great father, so when Goliath came taunting he responded in the heart of a father.

A Great Woman

This is the type of woman who attracted the future king • May 7, 2017 • Benham Brothers

•David had already killed Goliath & had just spared Saul’s life - he was operating by principle. •But now he was operating emotional and was going to take matters into his own hands. •vs 21-22 - “enemies of David???” Against Goliath he was more concerned about God. •With Saul, David focused on honoring God. With Nabal he focused on avenging himself. •WHY was he so mad? Because he was disrespected. •God used a woman to get him to refocus on God and not himself. •Notice three things Abigail did to get to David's heart: •vs 23-24 - 1) She led with respect - she had him at “On!” •You can say the right things but without the right posture it won’t get through. •HOW do you respect? Psalms 100:4 - through Thanks and Praise. •We thank Him for what He’s done and praise Him for Who He is. •vs 28 - 2) She reminded him of who he was - he fights God’s battles, not these petty ones. •Women need to remind their men who they are, because the devil can’t whip a man who knows who he is. •vs 29-31 - 3) She reminded him of what God was doing - this got him to refocus on God. •She didn’t try to get him to focus on her. •If she could get him to focus on God then she would be taken care of. •vs 32-35 - David’s focus was now on God. •When David released his problem back to God, it gave God room to take over. •vs 36-38 - God dealt with Nabal as He saw fit. •They that “wait upon the Lord” - state of waiting (no ambition), service of waiting (focus on Him). •vs 39 - God rewarded the woman who got the man to focus on God! •It was HER faith that increased David’s faith. •Notice how she waited - she was in the state of waiting when she left David that day, not having a clue how God was going to work this all out. •But then she was willing to remain in the service of waiting - she was willing to serve in whatever position God put her in.

Two Types of Jealousy

One is good and one is bad • May 4, 2017 • Benham Brothers

* Jonathon tried to talk his dad out of wanting to kill his friend David. * He knew his dad was being led by jealousy. * There are two types of jealousy - good and bad. * 1) Bad jealousy starts with a “SELF” mindset. * Two types of bad jealousy: * Those who want to protect themselves from anyone who would threaten what they have. * (like a jealous husband who thinks his wife is flirting because he’s a flirt) * Those who covet what others have and they don’t want them to have it. * (like Saul who wanted David’s reputation) - this type starts with comparison. * What separates this from coveting is the elimination of the person who has the thing you want. * 2) Good jealousy starts with an “US” mindset. * Good jealousy only exists in the context of relationship. * Good jealousy does two things: * It seeks to preserve what the two of you have together. * It seeks to defend the honor of the person you’re in relationship with. * God is jealous like this, and we should be jealous like this as well. * Testimony of being “jealous for the truth.”