Prayer Psalm: 39
Prayer Point: Death, while painful, is strong medicine against the delusions of our immortality and self-sufficiency that threaten our souls. Pray that God will show us how short life is, that our hearts will be detached from the temporary things of life so that our hopes will anchored in the eternal God.
When Jesus offers freedom to the Jews who began to follow him, they are deeply offended. As natural born citizens of the nation of Israel they believed, as we say in New England, they were “all set.” To be full-blooded descendents of Abraham securely placed them among God’s people or so they believed.
What are both Jews and Gentiles enslaved to according to Jesus? Jesus declares that slaves have no part in God’s family. How does someone become free and a member of God’s people.
What is the mark of a true descendant of Abraham and a child of God? How have the Pharisees shown that they are sons of the devil, not sons of God?
To be a true child of Abraham, you must do the things Abraham did (verse 39). What did Abraham do? He simply believed the promises of God and lived his life accordingly.
The survival of the Jerusalem church hangs by a thread. Of the three men that formed the core of Jesus’ disciples: James is now dead, Peter is in prison, only John remains at large. Having killed James, what motivates Herod to seize Peter and put him on trial? What does the church do in this time of crisis? How does God rescue his church and demonstrate his power to be superior to that of Herod and Rome?
In case you were wondering, the James mentioned at the end of the story is a different James from the one who was put to death. James, the brother of John was executed by Herod. James, the brother of Jesus, emerges as a leader of the church in Jerusalem.
Job 13:2-17, 21-27 – Job continues …
What does Job re-state here in verse 2 which we saw in verse 2 of Chapter 12? (“I am not inferior to you.”)
What is Job’s desire? (Job wants to argue his case directly to God.)
Of what does Job accuse his “friends”? (“You, however, smear me with lies; you are worthless physicians, all of you!” (Job 13:4 NIV))
What is Job’s definition of wisdom for his “friends”? (“If you would be altogether silent! For you that would be wisdom.” (Job 13:5 NIV))
What accusatory questions does Job ask of his “friends” about God? (“Will you speak wickedly on God’s behalf? Will you speak deceitfully for him?” (Job 13:7 NIV))
According to Job, showing partiality to God is akin to what? (God would see showing him partiality as being deceitful.)
What question does Job ask his “friends” which you would not want turned on you? (“Would it turn out well if he [God] examined you? (Job 13:9 NIV))
What does Job warn his “friends” if they secretly showed partiality to God? (“He [God] would surely rebuke you if you secretly showed partiality.” Job 13:10 NIV))
What is Job’s response to his own question: “Keep silent and let me speak; then let come to me what may. Why do I put myself in jeopardy and take my life in my hands?” (Job 13:13-14 NIV) (“Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him…” (Job 13:15 NIV))
What does Job say about “no godless man”? (“Indeed, this might turn out for my deliverance, for no godless man would dare come before him! (Job 13:16 NIV))
Job turns his attention to God next. What charge does Job bring before God? (“Withdraw your hand far from me, and stop frightening me with your terrors.” (Job 13:22 NIV))
It is clear that Job wants to have an encounter with the LORD. What challenge does Job present to the LORD? (“How many wrongs and sins have I committed? Show me my offense and my sin.” (Job 13:23 NIV) I don’t think I would tempt the LORD so recklessly!)
Job acknowledges that the LORD keeps a close watch on his [Job’s] goings-on. (Job 13:26-27)