Mocking the Crucified Christ

Mark, Sermon Preparation

November 8, 2015 – Morning Worship

MondayMark 15:16-32

See the theme of mocking that runs through this passage. Who are the mockers and why are they mocking Jesus?

TuesdayPsalm 69

How does this Psalm echo in our passage of Jesus’ scorn and reproach? What reason do we find in the Psalm that Jesus had to endure this (v. 9)? How does that apply to you?

WednesdayPsalm 22

In what ways do you see this Psalm of King David being fulfilled in a new way in Jesus Christ’s crucifixion? How does this Psalm help you understand what is going on in Mark? Why did Jesus have to suffer shame and suffering and crucifixion? How ought this be a great sadness and comfort to you?

ThursdayI Peter 2

How did Peter apply the reality of Christ’s suffering to the lives of Christians after the resurrection? How does this apply to you?

FridayMatthew 27:27-44; Luke 23:26-43; John 19:16-27

Notice the similarities and differences in the accounts of the other eyewitnesses to Jesus’ crucifixion? What is unique about Mark’s emphases and what is the significance for you?

SaturdayGenesis 2:25; 3:7-8; Ezra 9; Isaiah 61:7

How is shame related to sin? When do you feel shame, what do you feel ashamed about? How does Jesus enduring the mocking shame he does in Mark 15 deal with our shame?

Paul’s Ministry – Genuine

I Thessalonians, Sermon Preparation

October 25, 2015 – Morning Worship

MondayI Thessalonians 2 (esp. vss. 1–6a); I Kings 22:1–40

In 1 Thessalonians 2, what is Paul claiming about his ministry? Why? How does this apply to you?

TuesdayMatthew 12:22–32; 10:16–25; Acts 21:27–36; Exodus 17:1–7

Those who oppose the gospel, the word of God, and His messengers, love to slander, misconstrue, and falsely accuse both the gospel and those who believe it—and especially those who preach it. Why do you think? What can we learn here?

WednesdayJeremiah 23; Acts 20:17–38

What are the differences between the ministries of the false prophets and the Apostle Paul? What’s the lesson for the church of Christ today?

ThursdayI Thessalonians 2:1–6a; 1:5–6; I Samuel 12:1–5; Acts 26

Paul is defending his ministry against the attacks of those who oppose him. What do you think they are saying about him? What is his response in I Thessalonians 2:1–6a? What’s the application for you?

FridayI Thessalonians 2:2; Luke 12:49–53; Acts 16:16–24; Jeremiah 26

How does Paul’s preaching in the midst of division, conflict and persecution show the authenticity of his ministry? What’s the lesson here for us?

SaturdayI Thessalonians 2:2; Exodus 3:9–12; Psalm 139:1–12; Ezekiel 2:1–7; Acts 5:17–33, 40–42

With all the persecution and conflict, why did Paul and his companions continue to preach? How does this apply to us?

Favor for Failures

Mark, Sermon Preparation

October 11, 2015 – Morning Worship

MondayMark 14:66-72

What is the significance of this account about Peter as the premier disciple who was first to confess Christ? How might he be an encouragement to Christians who falter when facing persecution? How does Peter’s failure encourage you?

TuesdayMark 13:9-13; 14:53-65; 15:1-5

Why do you think Mark sandwiches Peter’s denial of Jesus between these two accounts of Jesus’ trial before the Sanhedrin and Pilate? How is Jesus doing for Peter what he cannot do for himself? Apply that to yourself.

WednesdayPsalm 88

This is one of the darkest Psalms without much glimmer of hope. If Jesus is the ultimate singer of the Psalms, how might this be the appropriate Psalm for him to be singing during Peter’s denial? Can we or should we sing this Psalm? How? When? Why?

ThursdayMark 14:17-21; 14:66-72

Peter makes two oaths—one to Jesus that he will never fall away, and one to a servant girl and some bystanders that he does not know anything about Jesus. Do you see the depth of Peter’s failure? How might that comfort and encourage you?

FridayJohn 13:36-38; 18:15-18, 25-27; 21:15-19

John recounts not only Peter’s failure, but also Jesus’ restoration of Peter. How does this help us understand the significance of Peter making sure the church always would remember his denial of Jesus? How is Jesus treatment of Peter such a powerful picture of his grace? How does this grace of Jesus substituting him- self for Peter and you apply specifically to you in your circumstances?

SaturdayMatthew 16:13-19; Mark 14:71; 1 John 1:5-2:6

How can God be faithful and just to forgive Peter’s denial Jesus? In ways are you tempted to deny knowing Jesus? In what ways does our sin look like a denial of knowing Jesus? Why do you think Jesus chose Peter after denying him to be a pillar of his church? What does that mean for you?

God’s Well-Known Chosen People

I Thessalonians, Sermon Preparation

October 4, 2015 – Morning Worship

MondayI Thessalonians 1 (esp. vss. 4-10)

In 1 Thessalonians 1:4-10 Paul continues listing the reasons he is so thankful for the Thessalonian believers. What are they? What can we learn from them?

TuesdayI Thessalonians 1:4-7; Psalm 19:7-11; Matthew 7:24-27; Acts 2:42-47; Romans 10:14-17

Why is Paul so confidant that the Thessalonian believers were God’s “chosen” people? What is the application to you?

WednesdayI Thessalonians 1:4-6; Ezekiel 37:1-14; Isaiah 42:6-9; John 14:25-26; 16:4-15

According to Paul, the Thessalonians are chosen, the word of God has come in power, they have received it in much affliction with joy, and their lives have been clearly transformed. This, of course, doesn’t always happen in Paul’s ministry (or ours!). What or who is the key ingredient? What’s the application?

ThursdayI Thessalonians 1:6-9; Leviticus 19:2; 20:22-26; Numbers 9:15-23; Mark 5:1-20; Acts 9:20-22; I Corinthians 6:9-11

One commentator wrote “a changed life is still the best evidence that we have become Christians.” Do you agree? Why or why not? What is the application to your life?

FridayI Thessalonians 1:9; Exodus 20:3-4; Isaiah 44; Luke 19:1 -10; Acts 18:18-20

The Thessalonian believers “turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God.” Why is that so important? How do you do that?

SaturdayI Thessalonians 1:10; 4:13-18; Exodus 25:8; Psalm 84; I Corinthians 15:50-57; II Peter 3:11-13; Revelation 21:1- 7; 22:1-5, 20

Throughout much of church history believers have lived in great anticipation and longed for, prepared for, couldn’t wait for the coming again of the Lord Jesus Christ. Why? Today – not so much thought, anticipation or excitement about Jesus coming again. What place does it have in your daily life?

Greeting and Thanksgiving

I Thessalonians, Sermon Preparation

September 27, 2015 – Morning Worship

MondayI Thessalonians 1 (esp. vss. 1-3); Acts 15:1-16:5; I Corinthians 1:1-7; Galatians 1:1-6; Philippians 1:1-5

Read all of these passages then consider what we learn in I Thessalonians 1:1-3

TuesdayI Thessalonians 1:1; 2:7, 11; Romans 1:1; Ephesians 1:1; Colossians 1:1; Philippians 1:3-11; 4:10-11, 14-23

Notice that Paul does not include any title with his name here in Thessalonians 1:1 like he does in his other letters (i.e. “an Apostle of Jesus Christ” or “a servant of Jesus Christ”, etc.). Why do you think? What is the application for us?

WednesdayI Thessalonians 1:1; Jeremiah 33; Matthew 16:18; John 6:35-40; Philippians 1:6

I Thessalonians 1:1 should be great comfort to a young church facing difficulties and persecution—like the Thessalonians. Why? What is the application to us as the church today? To you?

ThursdayI Thessalonians 1:2-3; Romans 1:8; I Corinthians 1:4-7; Ephesians 1:15-16; Philippians 1:3-5; Psalm 106:1

One commentator wrote “a spirit of gratitude shines through Paul’s letters.” Why do you think that is? Do you think those around you would say “a spirit of gratitude shines through you”? Why or why not? What are the reasons why you should have a spirit of gratitude?

FridayI Thessalonians 1:2; 5:17-18; Psalm 5:1-3; 42:8; 88:13; Mark 1:35; Luke 6:12; 22:39-46; James 5:13-18

Paul is “constantly” mentioning the Thessalonian believers in his prayers. What do you think that means? What is the application for our church? For our daily lives?

SaturdayI Thessalonians 1:3; Exodus 7:16; 24:3-8; Leviticus 19; Matthew 5:13-16; 10:22; I Corinthians 15:58; Titus 2:11- 15; I Peter 2:18-25

In I Thessalonians 1:3 Paul says he remembers and gives thanks for their “work of faith, labor of love and steadfastness of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.” What does that tell you about the Christian life? About the church?

1 and 2 Thessalonians

I Thessalonians, II Thessalonians, Sermon Preparation

Readings

1 Thessalonians (and 2 Thessalonians if you can); Acts 17 (esp. 1-8)

A little different this week—preparation for the next Sermon Series on 1 Thessalonians. Read through 1 Thessalonians during the week at your own pace. Read through 2 Thessalonians if you can. Read Acts 17, especially verses 1-8 for background. Answer the following application questions as you read this week.

Questions

  1. What do we learn about Paul’s ministry to the Thessalonians?
  2. What do we learn about the importance of the local church?
  3. What are the theological issues dealt with?
  4. What are the eschatological (i.e. end times) issues dealt with?
  5. How do we see the central importance of the gospel?
  6. Paul was encouraged by and concerned by Timothy’s report. What were some examples of both?
  7. What were the topics on which Paul offered instruction and correction and encouragement?
  8. Is there any applications for the contemporary church, especially us?!

Praise for the Lord’s Mercies

Psalms, Sermon Preparation

September 6, 2015 – Morning Worship

MondayPsalm 103

See how King David praises and blesses the Lord for all of His wonderful blessings, benefits and works. He also calls us to do the same. Do you?

TuesdayExodus 15:1-21; Romans 11:33-36

We should regularly (and/or immediately when appropriate!) reflect on what God has done and praise Him. Do you do that? How, when, where?

WednesdayEzekiel 16:1-14; Luke 7:11-17, 36-50; Titus 3:3-7

See the kindness, mercy and compassion of God our Father and our Savior Jesus Christ. How does this affect your daily life?

ThursdayGenesis 12:1-3; Isaiah 61:1-2; Luke 4:16-19, 38-41; Joel 2:28-32; Acts 2:14-36

Our God remembers and keeps His covenant promises. How does that encourage you and affect your behavior?

FridayLamentations 3:19-38; Romans 8:31-39

The Lord’s mercies never cease, or come to an end. They are new every morning. Nothing can separate us from Christ’s love. Are these promises true? Do you believe them? How do they affect your everyday life? How about in times of suffering?

SaturdayI Corinthians 10:31; Daniel 4; I Corinthians 15:58

Our God rules over the affairs of men and nations and even over every one of our lives! What ever we do, we are to glorify God. What is the application to you?

The Church – A Contrast Society

Genesis, Sermon Preparation

August 23, 2015 – Morning Worship

MondayGenesis 2:15-25; Exodus 20:1-17; Leviticus 19:1-18; Ephesians 4:17-32

The Church of Christ is to be a “contrast-society” or “counter cultural” community. Why? What does that mean? What’s the application to you?

TuesdayExodus 22:25-27; Leviticus 25:35-46; John 13:1-15, 34- 35; Acts 2:42-47; 4:32-37

One writer said that “living in community is not optional for Christians.” Why do you think he said that? Do you agree?

WednesdayDeuteronomy 7:1-11; Matthew 5:48; Luke 5:1-11, 27-31; 6:12-16; John 17:20-23; Ephesians 2:11-22

God calls His people, gathers them out from the world to be one with Him – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. How is the community of Christ (the church) different than the communities that gather together in the world?

ThursdayDaniel 4:28-31; Luke 12:4-7,13-34,18; 18:9-14,18-30; Acts 4:32-5:11

What are some of the hindrances and temptations that can disturb, disrupt, and even divide us as we live in our Christian community, the church? What is the application for your daily life?

FridayGenesis 13:1-18; Matthew 5:5, 7, 9, 38-48; 6:1-4; 7:1-5, 12, 24-27; John 13:1-15, 34, 35

What can we do to guard against these threats to our living in community as Christians? What can you do specifically?

SaturdayDeuteronomy 4:1-14; Mark 8:34-35; John 3:30; 13:34- 35; Romans 12:9-21; I Corinthians 10:31

Look at these passages: they show us what we can do to bless and strengthen the church, the community of Christ. How can you better put these truths into practice?

Properly Prepared

Daniel, Sermon Preparation

June 14, 2015 – Morning Worship

MondayDaniel 10:1-21

In Daniel 10 Daniel learns something about the future. What does he learn? What’s the application for us?

TuesdayJob 1, 2; Ephesians 6:10-20

The Word of God shows us where the real battle is for Christians in the world. Where is it? How does that affect your daily life?

WednesdayEzra 4; Acts 19:21-41

The rebuilding of the temple in the Old Testament and the spread of the gospel in the New Testament faced serious opposition. Any lesson for your life today?

ThursdayDaniel 10:7-10; Exodus 19; 20:18-21; Isaiah 6:1-5; Luke 5:1-8; Acts 9:4; Revelation 1:12-17

In these passages we see the reactions of those who have a vision of the glory and the holiness of the Lord. What are these reactions? Why? What does that tell us about God? Does this happen today? Why or why not?

FridayDaniel 10:10-11, 18-19; Exodus 3:7-12; Isaiah 54:10; John 3:16; Romans 5:1-11; 8:31-39

In the midst of this terrifying vision of future conflict, Daniel hears how much he is loved by this heavenly messenger. How is that an encouragement to Daniel and to us as Christians?

SaturdayDaniel 10:1-12; II Chronicles 7:12-15; Mark 1:35; Luke 6:12-13; John 16:23-24; Acts 1:14; 12:5; Colossians 4:2- 4; James 5:13-18

Here we see the importance of and encouragement to do what? Are you doing it? Why or why not?

The Resurrection Power of God in Scripture

Mark, Sermon Preparation

June 7, 2015 – Morning Worship

MondayMark 12:18–27

How are the Sadducees waging a PR battle with Jesus here? Where do you see their skeptical spirit in the world today and in your own heart? How does Jesus’ answer challenge this?

TuesdayMatthew 3:7; 16:1; Acts 4:1-2; 5:17–18; 23:6–10; Mark 12:14

How would you describe the Sadducees based on the Bible’s description of them? What types of people / attitudes in our day might be like them and how might Jesus’ response apply?

WednesdayDeuteronomy 25:5–10; Leviticus 18:16; 20:21; Ruth 1:1– 18; Mark 12:18-23

The Sadducees’ theoretical dilemma is based on the OT law of “levirate marriage” described in Deuteronomy? How do other laws in Leviticus show the absurd nature of their question and how might these laws have been important for protecting the weak and powerless in Israel?

ThursdayJob 19:25–26; Psalm 73:23–24; 88:5; 115:17; Isaiah 26:19; 38:18; Dan 12:2;

Many scholars today argue that the Sadducees view of the resurrection actually reflects the OT, where they see no evidence of a “resurrection theology”? What do you think?

FridayMark 12:24, 2–27; Romans 1:1-6; Philippians 3:8–11; Revelation 20:6

Jesus challenges our view of marriage and resurrection here? How does his teaching about the resurrection power of God offer you comfort and hope today?

SaturdayMark 12:24–25; Ephesians 5:22–32; Revelation 19:6–10; 21:1–10

Jesus’ teaches that human marriage is temporary for this life (i.e. “until death do us part”? Why is that? What is the real significance of human marriage, and what is the glory and wonder and joy that it points us to?