A Study on Nahum 3

  1. In what ways can God’s pronouncement of certain and inescapable judgement on the ancient civilisation of Assyria be a source of comfort and encouragement to God’s church today?
  2. Assyria was condemned because of their failure to stay true to the God to whom they had repented in Jonah’s day and for their turning to idols and superstitions.
  3. Discuss how you consider our own nation is in danger of following the same pattern. Assyria was trusting in her military strength and the support of strong allies to give victory when judgement loomed. What things might people today be tempted to rely on when they stand before God?
  4. Read 2 Peter3 vs 3-9. God’s word is clear that judgement is certain and inescapable, but many today have the same attitude as the scoffers of Peter’s day.How can we be more effective in communicating the urgency of the need for repentance and acceptance of Jesus as the only way of escaping judgement?

 

God is Jealous – how does that work?

A study on Nahum Chapter 1.

This study is based on the sermon: Is God Really Jealous?

  1. How familiar are the group with this book? Why do you think that is?
  2. What are the first thoughts you have on reading the first six verses?
  3. Describe what it means to be jealous?
  4. How is God jealous?
  5. Jonah had been used by God to convert the whole of Nineveh, a few hundred years later and there are few believer left. What can we learn from this as we look at our own society?
  6. In which ways is this chapter comforting to believers?

Study Questions: Zephaniah 2

A study on the sermon: Hunted down Chapter 2 of Zephaniah

  1. Discuss the first three verses of the chapter, specifically look at and talk through the following phrases – how might they apply to us today?:
  1. verse 1 “Gather together—yes, gather together…”
  2. verse 2 “the fierce fury of the Lord falls and the terrible day of the Lord’s anger”
  3. verse 3  “Seek the Lord”,
  4. Verse 3 all who are humble, and follow his commands.
  5. Verse 3 “Seek to do what is right and to live humbly. Perhaps even yet the Lord will protect you
  1. Take the rest of the chapter and look at the individual ‘judgement oracles’, consider:
  1. the different directions mentioned,
  2. the sins mentioned
  3. the warnings given
  4. which of the prophecies were fulfilled and which are yet to come
  5. does any of this passage equate with what’s going on in the Middle East today?

 

Study Questions: Zephaniah 1

This study relates to the sermon: God’s Love Seen Through Judgement

  1. Zephaniah starts his prophecy telling us his family background (1:1); he is a fourth-generation descendant of King Hezekiah (King of Judah from 715-686BC).  Does this pedigree matter to you?  Why or why not? 
  2. His opening words of prophecy tells of a terrible judgment to come: “I will sweep away everything from the face of the earth” (1:2).  It closes on the “day of the Lord” when God “will make a sudden end of all who live in the earth” (1:18).  This just might be the harshest, most universal judgment announcement in the Bible.  How does this make you feel?  How does this make you feel about God?
  3. God is clearly a little upset with Judah.  What has Judah done wrong? (see 1:4-6)
  4. Why is this book relevant to Christians today? On Sunday we talked through a lot of application for us today – what did that include?

 

Bullet points – A study on Matthew 5:6-8

This study is based on the sermon: Need an attitude adjustment?

Reading: Matthew 5:6-8

  1. How do you feel when the Lord reminds you through His Word, or a sermon about a need to change your attitude?
  2. Verse 6:
    1. what does it mean to hunger and thirst?
    2. what might cause us to lose our appetite for God, and the things of God?
    3. how can that be remedied?
  3. Verse 7:
    1. what is mercy?
    2. what is the condition on us being shown mercy?
    3. what if we don’t feel merciful?
  4. Verse 8:
    1. what does a pure heart look like?
    2. how can you have a pure heart?
    3. what does it mean to see God; is that a promise for now or for the future?
  5. Homework: ask the Lord to show you any areas in your life where there needs to be an ‘attitude adjustment’, and follow that up with a commitment to let Him do that work with you and for you.

Micah 6 – A Study

Note to leaders: As with all studies, please don’t feel you must cover all questions, fine if you can, but rather take a few of the questions and do them justice that rush through 🙂

If you missed the sermon, you can pick it up here: God doesn’t want your religion

Read Through Micah 6

  1. Why are the mountains called as witnesses? And who does the Lord ask to state their case?
  2. What is the Lord’s charge? In verse 3? What does it mean?
  3. Look back in your bibles at each reminder the Lord gives, why should have Israel remembered?
  4. In verse 6 and 7 look at the people’s questions, what do you notice about them? Discuss The Lord’s answer.
  5. What does it mean that we should fear the Lord?
  6. Where are the key lessons for us in this chapter today – how should we apply those lessons in our lives?

Micah 5 Study

Note to leaders: As with all studies, please don’t feel you must cover all questions, fine if you can, but rather take a few of the questions and do them justice that rush through 🙂

If you missed the sermon, you can pick it up here: The King from eternity

  1. Verse 1 seems at complete odds with the rest of the chapter, what is Micah pointing to (cf. 2 Kings 25?);
  2. Bethlehem was a tiny hamlet, what else do we know about Bethlehem from the bible? Also, why would God chose Bethlehem and not Jerusalem?
  3. At the end of verse 2, consider what it means: ‘whose origins are in the distant past’. How should this impact a) our understanding of who Jesus is, b) our view of creation, c) our reading of the Old Testament?
  4. Discuss verses 3-9, what are these verses pointing to?
  5. Verses 10 to 14 at first glance look like more judgement, but are they?  – if not what are they about – if so how does it fit with the rest of the passage?
  6. Who is the last verse addressing and at which time?

Micah 2 – Study Questions

A study on Micah Chapter 2

Here is the sermon if you missed it: God wouldn’t do that… Would He?

  1. To gather a bit of context, before taking a look through Micah 2, read through Leviticus 25: 8-34 and Exodus 20:1-17. As a group chat through those passages and clear up any queries group members might have;
  2. Read the first 11 verses if Micah and in the light of the Leviticus and Exodus passages, discuss:
    • verses 1-2 who was Micah addressing – how could it apply to Ely in 2016?
    • verses 3-5 God lays out what will happen, how come all the people are affected, even the few who have been faithful? What do group members feel about God’s response?
    • verses 6-11 What was going on here? Why were the people responding that way? (cf. 2 Timothy 4:3);
  3. Read the last verses (12 – 13) These verses seem to be at odds with the other verses, but the do fit in both technically and theologically, can the group work out how? (don’t give too much time on this :)). Read through John chapter 10and consider what this prophecy is pointing to, both in the near future (to Micah’s time), and further on.

Micah 1 – Study Questions

If you missed the sermon on this you can pick it up here: Puns aren’t always funny

  1. Read through the chapter – what are your first impressions of the book?
  2. What do we know about Micah, the time he was ministering, which other prophets were about at the same time etc.
  3. How did God give His messages to Micah, and what did Micah do with those messages? What can we learn from this about being open to God and obedient to him?
  4. On Sunday, after a brief overview of the chapter, we looked at three specific questions – what were they? Take some time to discuss each of them as a group, considering why the question is important, how Micah helps us answer the questions, and how we as individuals and as a church might need to take these things more seriously in our lives (there is probably a whole study just in this question…).

 

 

Comfort or affliction…

A study on James 5: 1-12, based on the sermon:  Are You Ready To Meet Your Maker?

  1. Take a few minutes as a group to recap on the issues James  has been addressing in his letter up to the end of chapter 4, are any of those issues more or less relevant today? Discuss.
  2. Read verses 1-6. Why are the rich people being told to weep and groan; is it their money, if not what?
  3. How much do we have to have before we’re rich? Read 1 Chronicles 29: 10-20 for context.
  4. If these verses are predominantly aimed at rich people who aren’t Christians, where is the lesson/application for us today?
  5. Read verses 7-12. As you read through notice and discuss each one of the commands or instructions James gives, how do they apply to us today in 21st century Ely?
  6. How do these two halves of the reading (1-6 &7-12) fit together to give a clear message about justice?
  7. take some time as a group to pray for each other and the whole church as we seek to apply this passage to our lives – Also please focus some prayer time on ‘the brick’ (God building His Church).