Jesus and Sinners (#1)

Today’s reading is Jesus and the woman caught in adultery (John 8:1-11). Again, the purpose of our study is to examine Jesus behavior and consider how we can be like Him. There are several considerations in the example of Jesus concerning this case.  What do you see in the example of Jesus concerning:

(1) How He chose to deal with the woman’s sin.

(2) How He treated the woman (especially in contrast to the scribes and Pharisees).

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Jesus In The Temple #2

Mark 12:41-44

In today’s reading we see Jesus back in the temple but this time he observes something that is beautiful and good. He teaches everyone an important lesson by commending a poor widow.

What do you think other people thought of the poor widow?

What does it say to you that Jesus noticed her and commended her?

How can we be like Him?

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Jesus In The Temple

This week we will consider how Jesus reacted to certain things He saw during His visits to the temple.

The first is the familiar “money changers” story.  This actually happened twice, once at the beginning of His ministry (John 2:13-22), and once in the final week of His life (Mark 11:15-18).

What word would you use to describe Jesus’ response to the things He saw in the temple?

How do the Old Testament quotations help us understand His concern?

How should we be like Him?

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Jesus And The Lost – What We Learned

In our study on “In His Steps” we review each week’s lesson in the classroom on Wednesday nights.  Here are some of the highlights from this week’s study about Jesus and Matthew, Zacchaeus, and the Samaritan Woman.

  1. Jesus mission (and ours to an extent) was to seek and save the lost (Luke 19:10).
  2. Jesus wasn’t afraid to identify people as lost or sick spiritually.  But the fact that they are sick spiritually compelled him to befriend them in hopes to saving them.
  3. At the conclusion of the Samaritan woman story Jesus said, “the fields are white unto harvest” (John 4:35), but this weeks lesson reminded us that the potential harvest may be people who are outside of the norm of those we think to be ideal candidates for God’s kindgom. We should broaden our seeking the lost to include every human being.
  4. Those who are searching (like Zacchaeus) are prime candidates.
  5. Jesus was not afraid to talk to strangers.
  6. We need to have a mindset of searching for opportunities to lead people closer to God.  It was just a simple ordinary encounter (Jesus was weary and thirsty waiting at Jacob’s well) that presented the opportunity to reach the Samaritan woman who in turn led her whole village to Jesus.

What other thoughts do you have about this week’s topic?

 

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Jesus and the Lost (#2)

Review the story of Jesus and the Samaritan Woman (John 4).

Both the woman and the disciples of Jesus are surprised that He took an interest in the woman. What barriers might they have seen to Him engaging in a conversation with her?

What else do you see in Jesus manner in engaging the woman and drawing out her interest in religion?  Choose one thing in His method of teaching her that can be an example to us.

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Jesus And The Lost

In today’s lesson we see Jesus choosing Matthew the tax collector to be one of His disciples (Matthew 9:9-13), and then later going to the home of the tax collector Zacchaeus (Luke 19:1-10).

In both accounts He is criticized for His association with sinners.

How  does He explain His actions in Luke 19:10?

How can we follow Jesus’ example in these accounts?

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Jesus And His Enemies (Part 2)

It is difficult to relate to the suffering of Jesus. He was sent by God to die on the cross. There was no other way the world could be saved from sin.

When His time came to die he set an incredible example by praying for those who were crucifying him (Luke 23:34) but why did he ask the Father to forgive them?

Read about Jesus suffering in 1 Peter 2:21-24.   He was willing to suffer even though He deserved none of the mistreatment He received.  What comforted Him in His suffering?

What does Romans 5:8-10 teach us about Jesus and His love for His enemies?

 

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Jesus And His Enemies

This week we want to consider Jesus’ attitude toward those who wanted to do Him harm. We know He taught in the sermon on the mount that we are to “love our enemies, do good to those that hate us, bless those who curse us” (Luke 6:27-28).   Is there any example in the life of Jesus where He practiced what He preached?

John’s gospel records two incidents in which the Jews tried to stone Jesus.   This is certainly not an exact parallel to people who might mistreat us today but perhaps it is a starting place for our discussion (more to come tomorrow).

John 8:56-59, John 10:31-36, John 11:7-10.

Again, twice the Jews took up stones intending to kill Jesus. How did he respond?

What else do you see in these accounts?

 

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Jesus And The Powers That Be

Matthew 22:15-22

As we saw yesterday, Jesus was a Jew but during His day the Jews were ruled by the Romans.  There were different attitudes among the Jews toward the Roman rule. Sadducees received their power from the Romans and so they  tried to conform. Pharisees thought they alone were holy and were blind to the reality that Rome ruled (John 8:33). Zealots were a more radical party and sought to rebel.

In an attempt to get Jesus into trouble He was asked whether or not it was lawful to pay taxes to Rome.

How does Jesus answer and, more importantly, what is the logic behind His answer?

How would we follow His example?

 

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Jesus And Jerusalem

Luke 19:41-44, Matthew 23:37-38

Jesus was  a Jew and the Jews did not have much political power in His day. The Herod’s had political power within their own country but everyone was ruled by the Romans.

In our reading we see Jesus coming to the capital of Israel, Jerusalem, and we see His concern for the country’s future. How are His feelings expressed? Why was He so concerned about the city and nation?

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