Off Topic Week 1


Whose voice(s) are you listening to?

We talked about 

  • Priorities
  • Voices (vs Noise)
  • Listening
  1. About Priorities
  2. About Voices
  3. About Noise
  4. About choosing – making a conscious decision. (Sometimes, maybe oftentimes, we just let lure “happen to us” instead of making conscious decisions. We should rather, make “informed decisions, decisions informed by our priorities. ESPECIALLY when it comes to Christ and our Christian faith. 
  5. In other words … Be Proactive about your conscious decisions.

(Fixing My Eyes on Jesus – Ann Graham Lotz)  MAY 20


Love the LORD your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him.


Has someone said to you, “God would never want you to stay in your miserable marriage — He wants you to be happy”? Or, “If you had more faith, you’d be healed”? Words like that can put us in a tailspin and cause spiritual doubt, even when made by sincere friends.

Learning to recognize the voice of God is critical for your own peace of mind, but also for developing a personal relationship with God — and for living a life pleasing to Him.

Make sure the voice you follow is authentically biblical. Paul warned the church in Galatians 1:7, “Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ.”

Jesus said in John 10:3 – 4 that He “calls his own sheep by name and leads them out…. his sheep follow him because they know his voice.” Learn to discern and recognize your Shepherd’s voice.

The last verse Anne Graham Lotz mentions in the devotional is John 10:3-4. 

Whose voice are you listening to???

Matt 17:5 says, (NIV 2011) “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. Listen to him!

Titus 2:11-14


) 11 “For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. 12 It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, 13 while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, 14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.”

The “It” highlighted above is the grace that comes to us from God THRU the Word of God. The Word of God IS the voice of God. 

Do you want to hear – to listen to God’s Son Jesus? 

How do you learn to listen to the Holy Spirit?

Can Someone look up Hebrews 4:12 

For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. (NIV)

Do you want to hear God? Get into your Bible.

See 2 Timothy 3:16-17

All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work. (ESV)

Do you want to hear God? Get into your Bible.

Do you directions in life? Get into your Bible.

Do you want discernment? Get into your Bible.

Do you want to know God better? Get into your Bible.

Do you want to hear the Holy Spirit speak to you? Get into your Bible.

Do you want wisdom? Get into your Bible. (See James; Proverbs)

  • Read His Word
  • Meditate on His Word
  • Memorize His Word
  • Study His Word
  • The scriptures – The Word of God – CANNOT be separated from the Jesus, the Son of God, who is Himself, The Word. Jesus is the living embodiment of the Word. 

What are your priorities?

What voices are you listening to?

Who – or what – are you trusting in?

What do you see when you look at Jesus?

What do you see when you look at God?

(How accurate do you think those two visions are?)

Read Bruce and Stan’s LISTENING TO GOD.

Later today, read John 10 slowly

Next week we do Matthew 1:18-25; the birth of Jesus

Bring Them Home Israeli music video

Bible Project Gospel of Matthew, Summary part 1

Bible Project Disclaimer: While the Bible Project Animation Videos are generally very good, we at the Orchard Church do not necessarily agree with every single point of every single video. Particularly, for example, we do not agree with everything they teach regarding the Atonement (which is NOT referenced here in the Matthew summaries.)
All authors, teachers, preachers and churches have points upon which we disagree, are flawed or mistaken in some way or another. Only the Bible is perfect in all it says and teaches. Grace abounds, even while holding tight to sound doctrine. Know your Bible well! For more disclaimer info, go to our Links page.

The Olive Tree Bible App is free and comes with several free books. You can buy additional books if you like.
Olivetree Bible App website – home page

Holman Commentary of Matthew in Olive Tree r

Olive Tree Support page “HOW TO” videos

What is a Covenant? By Keith A. Mathison on

What is a Covenant in the Bible? by Ester Kuhn at

Discover the Five Covenants in the Bible – an article on the Olivetree Blog

Why was geneologies so important to Israel? By

What is the Relevance of Geneologies in the Bible? By

Good article on The Kingdom of God by Tim Barnett of Stand To Reason website

Why did God give us Four Gospels by