Welcome to Session 4. And the session today is How God Relates to Us. One of the things I love about the Bible is about how real it is to real life. We don’t have characters in the Bible that are not true to life. I believe the Bible is an inspired, true story about real people. And, as we go through the D, I, S, C personalities in Scripture, we will see that these weren’t fictional characters. They were real people, and that God used in specific, but different ways.
Part 1. Paul as a High ‘D’
So the first person I want to introduce you to is the High D in Scripture. And Paul was our High D. How do we know that Paul was a High D?
1. Well, Paul was obviously DRIVEN by challenging goals. Let’s listen, in Scripture, how Paul talks, and you just hear the High D. I love it. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” The High D, he’s goal oriented, on mission, driven by challenging goals.
2. Paul was DIRECT and DEMANDING. In Thessalonians he says: If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat. If Paul was a High S, he would have said, “No, if you’re hungry, we should feed you”. Paul says, ‘if you don’t work, you don’t eat’. And Paul – I think it was easy for Paul to say. He believed it. It was a godly thing. So he was direct and demanding.
3. And then we know that Paul a DEBATER. Now High I’s like to talk, as well. But a D actually wants a challenge. He wants to debate a point. And Paul all over – when you read the Book of Acts, he’s debating the Jews, he’s debating the gentiles, he’s debating in front of government officials. And he does so very effectively.
4. Paul was DECISIVE and DETERMINED in his actions. One of the things that we see with Paul is, he was task orientated. Was that before or after he became a Christian? All the time. Listen, before he was a Christian, he went from place to place to do what? To hunt Christians, and have them executed. So, he was driven, and he was willing to move, and go out, and do it. Then after he becomes a Christian, there’s a second missionary journey, and Barnabas – his name is the Son of Encouragement. That sounds like a what? A High S. A great leader, by the way. And Barnabas and Paul has this major disagreement, “Should we take John Mark on the next journey?” And what does Paul say? No, way. We’re not going to take this young guy again. He messed up, and he’s going to frustrate the mission, and he should stay home. How do you think Barnabas feels about that advice? For a D, the Christian world is the task, the purpose, the project, the mission field. But for Barnabas, he sees the mission as not just accomplishing goals, but developing people. So he says, “Paul, then we part ways. I’ll go with John Mark, and you can go on your own.” And so, they had different values. Do you see that? The ones value is task. The other one is people. And they parted ways. Who is wrong or right? Do you think, at the end of Paul’s life, he would have done it quite the same? No, I think Paul developed into probably something very different than we read, somewhere where he longs for John Mark, correct? So, we see that Paul also wrote 1 Corinthians 13, ‘that love is more important than the tasks that he listed’. But, basically, his behavioral style was on-mission, task, and that’s who God used. Was Paul a mistake or was Paul divinely designed to be exactly who he was for his goal? Divinely designed for his mission.
So how did the Lord relate to Paul as a High D?
1. Acts 9: The Lord used the DAMASCUS ROAD experience to get Paul’s attention. Now High D – if you want to get their attention, should you be direct or indirect? Direct. So He used the 2x4 and He got him on the Damascus Road – he saw an angel, bright and he fell off his horse.
2. And the Lord appeared to him suddenly. That wasn’t indirect. That was very DIRECT. Then he fell to the ground and heard the voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” And then He said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. It is hard for you to kick against the goads.” Whatever that means, it’s difficult for Paul to what? He’s a wild man. And Jesus arrested him. Now we can learn from the Lord. The Bible says Paul says, “Imitate me as I follow Christ”. We can learn from the Lord how to work with a High D. Be to the point. If you’re an S or a C lady here, and you go to your High D husband, and you want to tell him something, give him the bottom line, and then the detail. If you give a High D all the detail, what does he get in the discussion? Bored, irritated, frustrated. Just give him relief – what happened. And then, once the tension is out, now you can give the detail. Jesus was a High D. Be direct and to the point.
3. The Lord allowed Paul to DEVELOP a ministry in new and uncharted territories. There in Romans 15 it says: And so I have made it my aim to preach the gospel, not where Christ was named, lest I should build on another man’s foundation, but as it is written: “To who He was not announced, they shall see; And those who have not heard shall understand.”
A High D wants to be a pioneer. A High D wants to do a new thing. A High D wants to reach people that’s never been reached before. A High D is not into maintenance. Sometimes Paul prompted a church, and it was this way for what? -- three weeks, other times three months, sometimes years. But Paul was on the go and he wanted new things. Other people don’t like that – true or false? But if you want to frustrate the High D in ministry, give him something just to maintain. You must give him a new or a big challenge.
4. The Lord gave Paul a ‘thorn in the flesh’ to keep him DEPENDENT. I’m going to speak to the High D’s. Sometimes, because we are goal driven and we’re persistent, we get results, and we tend to think of ourselves over time as what? More successful, more useful, or better than others. And we despise people that are not fast and quick, and to the point. And sometimes the Lord needs to use a thorn to get the air out of us. And if you’re a High D, and you have a thorn in your flesh, realize God loves you. He’s working with you, and it’s a good thing, and it will help you to stay humble.
Part 2: Peter as a High ‘I’
So if Paul is the poster-child for a High D, then Peter is the poster-child for the High I. You know, one thing… What does a High I do -- talk or listen? They talk, talk, talk, talk, talk. We know more about what Peter said in the New Testament, than all the other Apostles put together. If you strip out all the discussions of Peter – he said more than all the others in terms of what was recorded. But God used him.
1. Peter had a strong desire to INFLUENCE people for the sake of the Gospel. In Acts 3 he does the preaching after the Day of Pentecost – this wonderful, exciting day. By the way, Peter must have loved Pentecost, because it was such an incredible day. Signs and wonders. He had a big audience. I’s love big audiences. If your pastor is a High I, and there’s only 12 of you in church on Sunday, you’re depressing him. They need an audience. Bring friends. And if you’re a pastor, and you need an audience, go and find one in the marketplace. I remember years ago, we were with a couple of friends. We took a big cross; we went to the middle of Johannesburg city and just started preaching. If the audience doesn’t come to you, you go to the audience.
That’s why I love Clothing for Children. We went to 50 schools, and challenged them. And we got the principals to get all the kids to come and listen to the challenge of helping the poor. And then there was a big party that we had when everybody brought the clothing in. And we could make a big difference. I loved it. It was a High I experience.
2. Peter believed the IMPOSSIBLE and was willing to take risks. 28And Peter answered Him and said, “Lord if it is You, command me to come to you on the water.” 29So He said, “Come.” And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus.
Now, if Peter was a High C, do you think he would have climbed out of that boat? Not in a million years. I’m overstating. But he wouldn’t have done it as quick as Peter – true or false? Because the High I’s are what? Impulsive. They believe easily. Now, by the way, they also lost faith fairly quick. Because they go up and down a little bit more, right? – literally. But the High I’s are dreamers, and they believe the impossible.
3. Peter made INCREDIBLE promises because of his optimism that things would work out. He said, “Lord, I will never forsake You”. See, I’s over-promise, over-confident. And what happened to Peter? He did disown the Lord.
4. Peter was emotional and IMPULSIVE in his actions. John 21:4-7 – you want to read that. You want to use this as a Bible study. We give you all those things to go and understand all the personality types.
So, how did God relate to a High I? Well, the first thing the Lord did is, just as the Lord was direct with Paul, the Lord was imaginative with Peter.
1. The Lord captured Peter’s IMAGINATION to get his attention. Remember when they were fishing and they caught all the fish, and the Lord said, “I will make you a fisher of men”? The Lord caught his imagination. And the number of the fish was so great that the nets broke. Now that gets the attention of a High I. They love bigger than life experiences. If you want to get a High I’s attention, be imaginative. Don’t be dull. Don’t be boring. Be bigger than life. And, listen, Peter catching fish – to tell a High I that you can go and catch people, that’s what they live for. That was a great hook into Peter.
2. The Lord affirmed Peter’s IDENTITY and made him feel IMPORTANT. The Lord said to him, “And so I say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it.” And so, Peter was affirmed as a key Disciple. He was publicly affirmed after he made the confession of faith that Jesus is indeed the Messiah. And that’s what you do with a High I. You give them public prominence. And that’s appropriate. And you could say, “Well, okay, they just going to be puffed up and feel important”. Well, God made them that way to be what? Motivated by public… So when the Bible says, “Honor one another”, do you not do it to the High I’s just because they going to get puffed up? No, you do it to the High I’s. They need it – true or false? Affirm them publicly.
3. The Lord assured Peter of a position of INFLUENCE. He told him that he would be the key part, and he was. See, you dream the best for your students, for your wife, for your husband. That’s what he did.
4. The Lord gave Peter opportunities to have IMPACT on others. That first sermon – Peter was the one that gave the great sermon after Pentecost.
That’s D, I – now let’s get to S. Very interesting – the High D’s, did you identify with Paul? Oh, you did. The High I’s? Peter is your man.
Part 3: Abraham as a High ‘S’
Now we get the High S’s. The High S – remember they’re loyal, family people. And Abraham is a perfect picture of it.
1. Abraham obediently SUBMITTED to the Lord’s leading and left the SECURITY of his home. God says to him, 1Now the Lord had said to Abram: “Get out of your country, from your kindred and from your father’s house, to a land I will show you. I will make you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great; and shall be a blessing. So Abram departed as the Lord had spoken to Him.” So, it’s interesting – the High S, do they like change? No. But he was more loyal to God than to his family. And so, he left the security of his home, that was important, because he was submissive to the Lord.
2. Abraham sought to avoid conflict when he was faced with STRIFE. Strife is the word – s-t-r-i-f-e. So Abram said to Lot, “Please let there be no strife between you and me, and between my herdsmen and your herdsmen; for we are brethren. Is not the whole land before you? Please separate from me. If you take the left, I will take the right; or, if you to the right, then I will go to the left.” What a man of peace. Does he want to be prominent or does he want peace? Can you imagine a High D? He would have said, “Listen, Lot, you know the Lord called me. You just happened to be here. I will take the river and you can take the mountain. I go left, you go right.” What does this man of peace do? He gives choice to others. He doesn’t force his will on… That’s a characteristic of a High S; and it’s beautiful here.
3. Abraham asked God to spare Sodom because he was SENSITIVE to the needs of the people. It says in Genesis 18: 22 “Then the men turned away from there and went toward Sodom, but Abraham still stood before the Lord. And Abraham came near and said, “Would You also destroy the righteous with the wicked?” Remember Sodom and Gomorra? The Lord had pronounced judgment on the city. Now the S, do they want judgment or peace on that city? Peace. So they pleading with the Lord. Even if there’s so many people righteous, why don’t You spare the city? He has care and concern for others. The High C’s; justice. Remember our teacher -- if you fail the test, you fail? So a High C’s value is justice. And a High S’s value is mercy, right? And so, they are great. They actually – he’s praying for other people. The High S people have a wonderful prayer life. They’re intercessors. Do High D’s have a wonderful prayer life? They want to do things for the Lord, right? But the High S will do other great work for God. Maybe it’s more important, the High S’s say, to read out of Scripture than it is to pray. And so, we need in the church the doers, the intercessors, the people with the gift of mercy. We need the Abrahams.
How did the Lord relate to the High S?
1. The LORD gave him SPECIFIC reasons to change the status quo. Genesis 12:1-3: And He said, “Listen, Abraham, I’m going to change your world, but great is going to come out of it. I will send you to a different land. I will make your name great. You shall be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you. You and all the families of the earth will be blessed.” So although God challenged him to change the status quo where he was, He gave him the reasons. If you just to an S and say, “Listen, I want you to move from this suburb to this suburb, from this country to another country”, how does the High S respond to that? “Why? Why?” The D asks the ‘what’ question. The I, the ‘who’. The S is asking the ‘why’ question. And God gave him the reason. Sometimes we don’t give the S people enough time or enough reason when we change their world. The Lord did.
2. The next one: The Lord patiently gave Abraham SUFFICIENT time to respond to change. And the Lord said to Abram, after Lot had separated from him: “Lift your eyes now and look from the place where you are – northward, southward, eastward, and westward; for all the land which you see I give to you and your descendants forever. Arise, walk in the land through its length and its width, for I give it to you”.
3. The Lord created a SUPPORTIVE environment and made Abraham feel SECURE. So those two fill-in words – supportive and secure. After these things the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision saying, “Do not be afraid, Abram, I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward.” So when you bring a lot of change or challenge to a High S, what do you need to provide? Affirmation and security. If you do that… I mean, Abraham did leave, and he did go to another place. But the Lord gave him reasons, time, and security. Sometimes, when we work with High S’s, and they don’t want to change, what is our immediate reaction towards them? Anger. They are just uncooperative, slow. What else do we think about them? They’re disloyal, stubborn. Be like the Lord. Give them three things – reasons, time, and security. Now, obviously, is this all going to be stressful for them? Yes. But that’s the way to get results, and to get relationships.
4. The Lord tested Abraham’s faith by asking him to SACRIFICE his son Isaac…to sacrifice his son Isaac. Now we know that that was just a test, and the Lord didn’t do that. Isaac was not killed. A lamb was provided. Ultimately, Jesus Christ was provided. Isaac dying could not save us from our sins. But think about it. If you sometimes ask a High D parent to sacrifice a child, that’s not so difficult for them. There’s actually laws to protect children from a High D parent sometimes, right? But think about a High S parent, are they family people or not? Huge family people. So the Lord often brings great challenges. And sometimes the High S… The sacrifice we have to make in this generation is letting your children leave. Because, what does the S parent want to do with the kid? Protect, keep. “You can stay for us as long as you want.” No, no, no, you’ve got to let them go and grow up. You can’t be their protector forever.
Part 4. Moses as a High ‘C’
Now we’re going to go to the High C – Moses. How do we know he was a High C?
1. Moses was highly COMPETENT and a learned individual. Look what it says in Acts 7: 22 And Moses was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and was mighty in words and deeds. If you look at people that are academic people, that get master’s and PHD’s, they always have what…a lot of what in them? C. Because they willing to go through the process. And information is important to them – academic work. And they become competent. They often become specialists. They read a lot. They know what’s going on. And they are not happy to just be mediocre in a subject or in a discipline. They want to be excellent. So they become highly competent people – High C’s.
2. Moses was CAREFUL and CAUTIOUS when faced with a challenge. Careful and cautious. “Come now, therefore, and I will send you to Pharaoh that you may bring My people, the children of Israel, out of Egypt.” But Moses said to the Lord, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh, and that I should bring the children of Israel out of Egypt?” A High C, when God or other people give them a challenge that’s huge and big, are they saying, “Yes, we’re going to go”, or do they bounce back? Bounce back. They’re timid, and the challenge is too much, and they would rather let someone else do it. The High C’s don’t have their hands up in the air all the time to volunteer, do they? The High I kids would, right? But the C’s; no, because they’re cautious.
3. Moses made a COMPLETE presentation of God’s Law to the children of Israel and expected precise COMPLIANCE to it. Deuteronomy 4:1-2: “Now, O Israel, listen to the statutes and the judgments which I teach you to observe, that you may live, and go in and possess the land which the Lord God of your fathers is giving you. You shall not add to the word which I command you, nor take from it, that you may keep the commandments of the Lord you God which I command you.” Is there any shortcuts with Moses? Don’t take away; don’t add; do it just the right way.
How did the Lord relate to him?
1 Well, the Lord, #1, CONFIRMED who He was by providing CLEAR evidence to Moses. Now, one thing about a High C is, you can’t give them a rumor or just a dream or a story. They want what? Facts. What did God give him? Absolute proof that it wasn’t just in his imagination. He gave him a burning bush. What High C’s want is evidence. They must have evidence.
2. The Lord was specific in the COMMUNICATION of His plans to Moses. As you read in Exodus 3:7-8, 10: He gave him specific instruction when they went into the land. “So I have come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up from that land to a good and large land, to a land flowing with milk and honey, to the place of the Canaanites and the Hittites and the Amorites… And then it says, “Therefore, I will send you to Pharaoh that you may bring My people, the children of Israel, out of Egypt.” So the Lord is precise in His communication and with His plans. If you’re working with a High C, you need to declare the steps, and the plan, and the outcome.
3. The Lord recognized that Moses was CAUTIOUS and patiently addressed his CONCERNS. So He gives him actually the words to say to the people. Does a High C like that? When you actually give them clear, specific strategy, and even content, it gives them a sense of… Otherwise, they will… Can you imagine Moses? He will redraft. As a High C, ever written a speech? How many times do you rewrite it? A million times, right? Well, the Lord helped him here. He told him exactly what to say. So, if a High C is in a very stressful situation, help him. Give him what’s needed – instructions, words, affirmation, and so forth. Remember with the High D – you give him freedom to come up with his own words. With a High C, you help him.
4. Okay, the Lord gave Moses tasks that required him to be both CORRECT – the first ‘C’ is correct -- and that he had to be CONSCIENTIOUS – that means precise again. 7So Moses came and called the elders, and laid before them all these words that the Lord commanded him. Then all the people answered and said, “All that the Lord has spoken we will do.” So Moses brought back the words of the people to the Lord. That’s what Moses is saying. Going back to it, that’s why always I’m so relieved that Jesus was a High D. Because, when they ask Him, “What is the law all about?” – He summarized it. He said, “This is the law, that you should love God and your neighbor with all your heart, soul, and mind”. He summarized it. That’s what High D’s do. That’s my proof that Jesus was a High D. He didn’t go out and read the whole law to us, like a High C. He just summarized it – bottom line. They’re not… Did you see? They’re not buying it. So, what do you think Jesus – what was He, according to you? Was Jesus a D, I, S, or a C? Now, do we know of D behavior? Man, when He was angry in the temple when they defiled it, what did He do there? Boom, kicked it out. He was High D there. He confronted. High I – did He love the crowds? The crowds followed Him. But sometimes He wanted to be alone from them. The S understands that. Sometimes He didn’t just want to have the crowds, but He wanted to just be alone with three of His best friends. So He’s actually a High S. But Jesus talks a lot, as well, doesn’t He? He’s a High I. He has truths to tell. And C – does Jesus…? He says, “I am the way, the truth, and the life”. Jesus has morals, communicates absolute. He’s not tolerant of everyone, is He? But He still loves the sinner. So Jesus is the complete person. And we’re only complete… I’ve never seen someone become just a complete Christian over time. That’s why we need the body. And the body of Christ -- when we come together, there’s enough D, I, S, and C. When we form a team, we’re just not like Him – Superman. It’s amazing.
When you read the Bible, is Paul a perfect person? Is Peter a perfect person? Is Abraham a perfect person? You know, under pressure – you know, Abraham, he’s like the nice guy there, like we just read. Not so. When the Pharaoh said to him, “Is this your wife?” – He said, “No”. This is what? My sister. Because, what did he not want with Pharaoh? A fight. So, under pressure they lie, right? And the C – is Moses perfect? No. He’s not perfect. If you read the whole Bible, there’s only one perfect person. Who is that? Jesus. Right, four in one. Even when four people report on Him… See, it’s not that He’s in Mark perfect, but He’s in John kind of okay. All the Gospel present Him as what? The perfect. That’s why you can never just say, “He’s a good man or a prophet”. He’s different than all the other characters in Scripture. And it’s not like the Bible is a fairytale that represents everybody in that way. So that’s a great thing.
So, can God use a D? And He did. Can God use an I? And He did. Can God use an S? And He did. Can God use a C? And He did. So close your eyes, and thank God for your pastor – whatever personality type he has. Thank God for your other Christian leaders on your church group. Thank God that not all of them are D’s, or I’s, or S’s, or C’s. And thank God that He made you just the way you are. And, Lord, now we pray that we will, just like You, relate to people appropriately. Help us to understand that You’ve created everyone differently. And help us spiritually to celebrate their uniqueness, and to come alongside, and to complement them, and to champion them. We pray that in Jesus’ Name. And everyone said, “Amen”.
Thank you. Turn to the person next to you and tell them: What did you learn most about this biblical session on D, I, S, and C?