What does God think is the most important things to pass on to the world? When things start to go wrong in our lives and we become distracted, and to start loosing our focus on God the Father and Christ our Lord, what is it we should "Above All" keep in mind and heart?
This is a not a study as much as it is a “Word List”, a list of verses that deal with one specific subject, something each of us are called to remember and take to heart.
I have tried to organize the verses into groups and provide some added refferance verses to help.
I hope this is helpful to you.
I really like this as being the best definition that I can find for applying to the meaning of these verses. Using this when God describes how he placed Israel “before every other consideration” gives new meaning to the passage and really shows the heart of God.
TABLE OF CONTENTS:
Pg 1 Introduction Pg 3 God's Word:
Table of Contents: The Serpent/Devil:
KEY: Pg 5 The Heart
Key Verse: To All Disciples
Pg 2 God is Above All Pg 6 A Short List of Verses
How to think about Jesus: Concluding Comments
Key word in RED
Important words in BLACK
() Added words to clarify who is speaking or what is happening.
# Comments on the verse.
[II] FOOTNOTES: Located at the bottom of the page.
God is Above All: (Before every other consideration):
1 Chron 16 Ministering Before the Ark: (v1-43)
25 For great is the Lord and most worthy of praise; he is to be feared above all gods.
Neh 9 The Israelites Confess Their Sins: (v1-37)
5 And the Levites—Jeshua, Kadmiel, Bani, Hashabneiah, Sherebiah, Hodiah, Shebaniah and Pethahiah—said: “Stand up and praise the Lord your God, who is from everlasting to everlasting.” “Blessed be your glorious name, and may it be exalted above all blessing and praise.
Ps 95:3 For the Lord is the great God, the great King above all gods.
Ps 97:9 For you, Lord, are the Most High over all the earth; you are exalted far above all gods.
How to think about Jesus: (Before every other consideration)
John 3 John Testifies About Jesus: (v22-36)
31 The one (Jesus) who comes from above is above all; the one who is from the earth belongs to the earth, and speaks as one from the earth. The one who comes from heaven is above all.
Eph 1 Thanksgiving and Prayer: (v15-23)
18 I (Paul) pray that the eyes of your (the Ephesian disciples’) heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he (God) has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, 19 and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength 20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, 21 far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. 22 And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, 23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.
God’s Word: (Before every other consideration)
2 Peter 1 Prophecy of Scripture: (v12-21)
19 We also have the prophetic message as something completely reliable, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts. 20 Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation of things. 21 For prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.
The Serpent/Devil: (Before every other consideration)
Gen 3 The Fall: (v1-24)
13 Then the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?”
The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”
14 So the Lord God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this, “Cursed are you above all livestock and all wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life.
Israel and the Jews: (Before every other consideration)
Deut 10 Fear the Lord: (v12-22)
14 To the Lord your God belong the heavens, even the highest heavens, the earth and everything in it. 15 Yet the Lord set his affection on your (Israel’s) ancestors and loved them, and he chose you, their descendants, above all the nations—as it is today.
Deut 26 Follow the Lord’s Commands: (16-19)
16 The Lord your God commands you this day to follow these decrees and laws; carefully observe them with all your heart and with all your soul. 17 You have declared this day that the Lord is your God and that you will walk in obedience to him, that you will keep his decrees, commands and laws—that you will listen to him. 18 And the Lord has declared this day that you are his people, his treasured possession as he promised, and that you are to keep all his commands.
19 He has declared that he will set you in praise, fame and honor high above all the nations he has made and that you will be a people holy to the Lord your God, as he promised.
# I don’t think there is a way for a person to calculate its true value of this blessing.
Deut 28 Blessings for Obedience: (v1-14)
1 If you (the Jews) fully obey the Lord your God and carefully follow all his commands I (Moses) give you today, (then) the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations on earth. 2 All these blessings will come on you and accompany you if you obey the Lord your God:
3 (then) You will be blessed in the city and blessed in the country.
4 The fruit of your womb will be blessed, and the crops of your land and the young of your livestock—the calves of your herds and the lambs of your flocks.
5 Your basket and your kneading trough will be blessed.
6 You will be blessed when you come in and blessed when you go out.
7 The Lord will grant that the enemies who rise up against you will be defeated before you. They will come at you from one direction but flee from you in seven.
8 The Lord will send a blessing on your barns and on everything you put your hand to. The Lord your God will bless you in the land he is giving you.
9 The Lord will establish you as his holy people, as he promised you on oath, if you keep the commands of the Lord your God and walk in obedience to him. 10 Then all the peoples on earth will see that you are called by the name of the Lord, and they will fear you. 11 The Lord will grant you abundant prosperity—in the fruit of your womb, the young of your livestock and the crops of your ground—in the land he swore to your ancestors to give you.
12 The Lord will open the heavens, the storehouse of his bounty, to send rain on your land in season and to bless all the work of your hands. You will lend to many nations but will borrow from none. 13 The Lord will make you the head, not the tail. If you pay attention to the commands of the Lord your God that I (Moses) give you this day and carefully follow them, (then) you will always be at the top, never at the bottom. 14 Do not turn aside from any of the commands I give you today, to the right or to the left, following other gods and serving them.
# This is a good example of an “if/than” conditional clause verse, showing what is expected and what the reward would be for obeying.
Prov 4:20 My (Solomon’s) son, pay attention to what I say; turn your ear to my words.
21 Do not let them out of your sight, keep them within your heart;
22 for they are life to those who find them and health to one’s whole body.
23 Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.
Jer 17 Day of Disaster: (v16:1-17:18)
9 The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?
# It is in the heart that I wedge the spiritual battle. It is here that I struggle with my place before God, I can seek to humble myself before him or I like the fool turn my back and deny him. Ps 14:1 [I]
To All Disciples:
Giving my word: (Before every other consideration):
James 5 Patience in Suffering: (v7-12)
12 Above all, my brothers and sisters, do not swear—not by heaven or by earth or by anything else. All you need to say is a simple “Yes” or “No.” Otherwise you will be condemned.
The value of my relationships: (Before every other consideration)
1 Peter 4 Living for God: (v1-11)
7 The end of all things is near. Therefore be alert and of sober mind so that you may pray.
8 Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. 9 Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. 10 Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewarts of God's grace in its various forms.
2 Peter 1 Prophecy of Scripture: (v12-21)
19 We (apostles) also have the prophetic message as something completely reliable, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts. 20 Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came by the prophet’s own interpretation of things.
Spiritual dangers: (Before every other consideration)
2 Peter 3 The Day of the Lord: (v1-18)
3 Above all, you (disciples) must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. 4 They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our ancestors died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.” 5 But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens came into being and the earth was formed out of water and by water. 6 By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed. 7 By the same word the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.
8 But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. 9 The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.
[I] Ps 14 Of David.
1 The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, their deeds are vile; there is no one who does good.
Short List of Verses:
1 Chron 16:25 The Lord is to be feared above all gods.
Neh 9:5 Your (God’s) glorious name, may it be exalted above all blessing and praise.
Ps 95:3 For the Lord is the great King above all gods.
Ps 97:9 The Most High, to be exalted far above all gods.
John 3:31 (Jesus) who comes from above is above all
Eph 1:21-22 Christ seated in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked,
Gen 3:14 The serpent, Cursed are you above all livestock and all wild animals!
Deut 10:15 God chose, the Jews, above all the nations
Deut 26: 19 God will set Israel in praise, fame and honor high above all the nations he
has made and that you will be a people holy to the Lord
Deut 28:1 the Lord your (Israel’s) God will set you high above all the nations on earth.
Prov 4: 23 Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.
Jer 17:1 9 The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure
James 5:12 Above all, my brothers and sisters, do not swear, let your “yes” be “yes”
and your “no” be “no”
1 Peter 4:7 Above all, love each other deeply,
1 Peter 1:20 Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came by
the prophet’s own interpretation of things.
2 Peter 3: 3 Above all, you (disciples) must understand that in the last days scoffers
will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires.
Because this an emphases that is repeated over and over, it seems that man needs to be reminded and encouraged often of what is truly important so we don't lose focus of it in the difficult times. In the study on "Encouragement" I found this to be a frequent message to the people of God, the Jews and the Church, Remember when God..., Don't forget what God...
This has always been a failing of man, from a time of our berth through our whole lives. We loose our focus and need to be reminded of the things we already know.
1. Know what you claim to believe.
"Above All" Study the Word, become grounded in it so when distractions of life come you have the firm Rock of the Word of God to stand on.
2. Relationships Above All.
First with our Lord Jesus, the pioneer of out faith, Heb 12:2 and then with other disciples. I find I am much closer and think of my brothers and sisters in Christ first as a place of refuge and strength. It is the way we can access face to face our relationship with Christ now. Prov 18: 14 & 24
Prov 18:14 The Human spirit can endure in sickness, but a crushed spirit who can bear?
24 One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who
sticks closer than a brother.