A Closer Look by Randy Skeete
Some people read the Bible and don’t feel edification afterward. In this 7-part series with Pastor Randy Skeete, he proposes how we should not read the Bible in a shallow or superficial way, as this leads to lesser understanding and only a surface comprehension. Instead we should strive to take a closer look into the inspired Word of God. Throughout this series we will go deep into scripture and take an investigative look into certain verses that will help us grow closer and mature in Christ.
Lecture 1 – A Piece of Cake – 45 Minutes
God is all powerful, so almost everything is a piece of cake to the Lord. What is Christ’s biggest challenge to overcome?
What is the first promise in Scripture? Genesis 3:15 says, “I will put enmity between thee and the woman.” Every other promise made in the Bible is based on this striking line, and every other promise is easier to fulfill than this chilling line. The Lord promised to imbue strength and courage to everyone in order to fight against sin, and this is no small task. This promise is the most challenging work God has ever done for the sinner.
A piece of cake is a simple task. Something that requires minimal effort. In this first lecture from Randy Skeete’s A Closer Look series, we discover how everything except Christ’s first promise to us is a piece of cake. To the Lord, anything is possible and easy, but He does not want to cause us enmity or pain, for He is love. Since the Lord loves us so, He gave us the ultimate chance to battle against sin and satan. By putting enmity in our hearts against sin, God is empowering us to be the opposite of our baser sinful natures. We were all born sinners and born flawed, but Christ has prepared us to fight against our baser instincts. Many people ask God for things that are a piece of cake to Him: for a house, for a raise, for success at a job. However, asking God to help us overcome sin? That is the biggest challenge, but leads us to the greatest victory. There is a power that is stronger than any sin or darkness, will you allow Him to help you?
Lecture 2 – Better than the Best – 45 Minutes
Love is obedience in action. If we love our Lord, we will obey His commands and follow Him in all things. Discover what it means to do better than sacrifice, what does it mean to truly obey?
God gave His one and only beloved son Jesus to die for us, making it an ultimate sacrifice. This sacrifice is absolutely essential for our forgiveness and pardon. This sacrifice cost the most precious blood of Jesus, and so our price has been paid by the painful sacrifice.
In this second part of Randy Skeete’s A Closer Look series, learn about the greatest event in the history of existence: the atoning sacrifice of Jesus, the Son of God. Yet, the Bible says in 1 Samuel 15:22, “to obey is better than sacrifice.” What does that mean? Consider how our Lord wants us to obey Him as a sign of our love and commitment to Him. We do not need to offer burnt offerings, but instead God delights when we follow Him with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength. Are you ready to give God better than the best?
Lecture 3 – Opposites Attract – 35 Minutes
What does it mean to be one with God? Angels do not even enjoy that privilege, so can we learn how we can grow closer to Him who is so different from us?
When Adam was first created, he was made perfect in the image of God. When Adam and Eve fell from grace, however, mankind was changed instantly from perfect to imperfect. We fell a long way from God’s perfection. God is described as being light (1 John 1:5), while fallen mankind is depicted as darkness (Ephesians 5:8). If light and darkness are opposites, and are to have no fellowship with one another (2 Corinthians 6:14), how does God bring the sinner closer to Himself?
We cannot be more like God by our own strength, we need the Holy Spirit and to invite Him into our lives in order to grow closer to Him. God gives us impulses through His message, His word, and we are called to respond to those impulses. If you feel a call from Christ, will you choose to follow? In this third lecture from Randy Skeete’s A Closer Look series, discover how opposites attract and we can actively choose to grow closer to Christ though we are so different from Him.
Lecture 4 – The Second Time Around – 40 Minutes
God has ultimate power and ultimate control, and He chooses to use His power for good and to help us, whether during the first or the second time around.
When God says something, it comes to be. When He said, “let there be light,” light came into being because of His word. However, each time the Lord makes a proclamation, it costs Him some of His power. His storehouse of power is unlimited, but there is a cost associated with every miracle He performs. Though each action may require power from God, He is happy to do so because we are worth the world to our Lord. We are worth more than any other creation by His hand, and so He has willingly and lovingly given His life for us.
In this lecture from Randy Skeete’s A Closer Look series, discover what it cost the Lord to save us, and how we are worth it to Him. The first time around when God gave Adam life, it was easy and the cost was small for God. However, when Adam sinned, this became the second time around when God had to actively and purposefully save us with His blood. This second time around involves sin, and it cost Him dearly. He has chosen to make salvation and redemption available to all of His beloved children, and He has readily paid the ultimate cost. Learn about the huge implications of the second time around.
Lecture 5 – Lost in Love – 40 Minutes
Can we unknowingly hate Christ? Discover what it means to be lost in love and how we can show and live in true saving love through Christ.
Many people are close to having a better relationship with Christ. Many people follow the Ten Commandments with no problems, but they may be lacking in one area. If there’s one thing you need to conquer and overcome in order to get closer to His Kingdom, then ask the Holy Spirit to help you overcome! So what does it mean to be lost in love? Love is the greatest commandment, and yet it is one of the most difficult to abide by. If we love God, we will choose Him first and follow His commandments. In the same way if we do not follow Him and therefore sin, we are showing God hatred.
Many of us struggle with priorities. We want a successful career, a wonderful spouse, a fancy new car, and lots of money and success. What happens when we place these things ahead and above of Christ? We cannot be lost in that kind of love, but we need to find salvation in God’s love for us. In this lecture from Randy Skeete’s A Closer Look series, discover how we can hate God while claiming to love Him, and how we can learn to be found in love with Christ.
Lecture 6 – Walking with Giants – 38 Minutes
Christ is a giant. The Holy Spirit is a giant. Jesus is a giant. All the heavenly host are giants. Do you know what it means to go walking with these spiritual giants?
When Adam was in the Garden of Eden, he had the blessed privilege of being able to walk with God. Angels also visited him in the garden. These awesome things will all be restored in the new earth. The tree of knowledge will be restored. Every beautiful and perfect aspect of the Garden of Eden will be restored in heaven. Are we willing to do whatever it takes to get there? We may face a lot of temptations and it is not always easy to follow the commandments of God. But if we love our Heavenly Father, we need to seek Him in all things so we can reach the place where we will be with Him at all times.
When we spend a lot of time with someone, they can start to affect us. If we walk with God in our earthly lives, we can be slowly but surely changed by Him. By reading Scripture, meditating on His word, and prayerfully learning more about Christ, we can learn to walk with giants now and also in heaven. The Lord has promised great and marvelous things for the redeemed. The redeemed of the Lord will enjoy privileges in the new world that unfallen angels cannot and will not even experience. In this lecture from Randy Skeete’s A Closer Look series, learn more about the significance of giants and what it truly means to go walking with giants.
Lecture 7 – Gifts are Received, not Taken – 55 Minutes
How can we learn to selflessly receive instead of selfishly take?
We each have unique gifts, given to us from God. However, there is a right and wrong way to accept these gifts, and a righteous and unrighteous way to use our gifts. If we receive gifts from God, then we need to fully comprehend where these gifts come from, and how we can give the glory of these gifts back to God. Even if we do the right thing with a gift, we can be unrighteous in the process. In this final part of Randy Skeete’s A Closer Look series, learn about how we ought to receive holy gifts righteously, and to avoid taking gifts that have not been allotted to us.
This lecture investigates the differences between Abram and Lot. How did God treat these two men differently, and why? Consider how Lot took what he thought was his, but did not receive it righteously the way that Abram received his gifts. In a similar way Lucifer wanted the gift of dominion and power in heaven, but he wouldn’t receive the gift and he simply tried to take it. This unrighteousness was part of his downfall. We cannot unduly take a gift that only God can give us. Familiarize yourself with the differences between receiving Godly gifts, and unrighteously taking them.