Christ Our Provider
Luke 12:13-21 (CSB) Someone from the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.”
“Friend,” he said to him, “who appointed me a judge or arbitrator over you?” He then told them, “Watch out and be on guard against all greed, because one’s life is not in the abundance of his possessions.”
Then he told them a parable: “A rich man’s land was very productive. He thought to himself, ‘What should I do, since I don’t have anywhere to store my crops? I will do this,’ he said. ‘I’ll tear down my barns and build bigger ones and store all my grain and my goods there. Then I’ll say to myself, “You have many goods stored up for many years. Take it easy; eat, drink, and enjoy yourself.”’
“But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life is demanded of you. And the things you have prepared—whose will they be?’
“That’s how it is with the one who stores up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God.”
Proverbs 30:7-9 (CSB) Two things I ask of you;
don’t deny them to me before I die: Keep falsehood and deceitful words far from me.
Give me neither poverty nor wealth; feed me with the food I need. Otherwise, I might have too much and deny you, saying, “Who is the LORD?” or I might have nothing and steal, profaning the name of my God.
Matthew 5:43-48 (CSB) “You have heard that it was said, Love your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven. For he causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. For if you love those who love you, what reward will you have? Don’t even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet only your brothers and sisters, what are you doing out of the ordinary? Don’t even the Gentiles do the same? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
Psalms 16:5-11 (CSB)
LORD, you are my portion
and my cup of blessing;
you hold my future.
The boundary lines have fallen for me
in pleasant places;
indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.
I will bless the LORD who counsels me—
even at night when my thoughts trouble me.
I always let the LORD guide me.
Because he is at my right hand,
I will not be shaken.
Therefore my heart is glad
and my whole being rejoices;
my body also rests securely.
For you will not abandon me to Sheol;
you will not allow your faithful one to see decay.
You reveal the path of life to me;
in your presence is abundant joy;
at your right hand are eternal pleasures.
1 Corinthians 9:8-18 (CSB) Am I saying this from a human perspective? Doesn’t the law also say the same thing? For it is written in the law of Moses, Do not muzzle an ox while it treads out grain. Is God really concerned about oxen? Isn’t he really saying it for our sake? Yes, this is written for our sake, because he who plows ought to plow in hope, and he who threshes should thresh in hope of sharing the crop. If we have sown spiritual things for you, is it too much if we reap material benefits from you? If others have this right to receive benefits from you, don’t we even more? Nevertheless, we have not made use of this right; instead, we endure everything so that we will not hinder the gospel of Christ.
Don’t you know that those who perform the temple services eat the food from the temple, and those who serve at the altar share in the offerings of the altar? In the same way, the Lord has commanded that those who preach the gospel should earn their living by the gospel.
For my part I have used none of these rights, nor have I written these things that they may be applied in my case. For it would be better for me to die than for anyone to deprive me of my boast! For if I preach the gospel, I have no reason to boast, because I am compelled to preach—and woe to me if I do not preach the gospel! For if I do this willingly, I have a reward, but if unwillingly, I am entrusted with a commission. What then is my reward? To preach the gospel and offer it free of charge and not make full use of my rights in the gospel.
1. God clearly tells us not to store up treasure but we are to give an inheritance for our children. What sort of inheritance do you think he is talking about. 2. Read Romans 8:14-17 and compare that to Hebrews 1:1-2. If we are co-heirs with Christ and Christ inherits the whole world, what is our portion from God? What does it mean to be "co-heirs or fellow heirs with Christ? 3. If we are co-heirs with Christ who is heir of all, what did Paul say provided that we what?
Christ Our Hope
Luke 12:22-34 (CSB) Then he said to his disciples, “Therefore I tell you, don’t worry about your life, what you will eat; or about the body, what you will wear. For life is more than food and the body more than clothing. Consider the ravens: They don’t sow or reap; they don’t have a storeroom or a barn; yet God feeds them. Aren’t you worth much more than the birds? Can any of you add one moment to his life span by worrying? If then you’re not able to do even a little thing, why worry about the rest?
“Consider how the wildflowers grow: They don’t labor or spin thread. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was adorned like one of these. If that’s how God clothes the grass, which is in the field today and is thrown into the furnace tomorrow, how much more will he do for you—you of little faith? Don’t strive for what you should eat and what you should drink, and don’t be anxious. For the Gentile world eagerly seeks all these things, and your Father knows that you need them.
“But seek his kingdom, and these things will be provided for you. Don’t be afraid, little flock, because your Father delights to give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Make money-bags for yourselves that won’t grow old, an inexhaustible treasure in heaven, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Romans 8:27 (CSB) And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because he intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.
Romans 5:1-11 (CSB) Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. We have also obtained access through him by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we boast in the hope of the glory of God. And not only that, but we also boast in our afflictions, because we know that affliction produces endurance, endurance produces proven character, and proven character produces hope. This hope will not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
For while we were still helpless, at the right time, Christ died for the ungodly. For rarely will someone die for a just person—though for a good person perhaps someone might even dare to die. But God proves his own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. How much more then, since we have now been justified by his blood, will we be saved through him from wrath. For if, while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of his Son, then how much more, having been reconciled, will we be saved by his life. And not only that, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received this reconciliation.
Acts 5:27-32 (CSB) After they brought them in, they had them stand before the Sanhedrin, and the high priest asked, “Didn’t we strictly order you not to teach in this name? Look, you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching and are determined to make us guilty of this man’s blood.”
Peter and the apostles replied, “We must obey God rather than people. The God of our ancestors raised up Jesus, whom you had murdered by hanging him on a tree. God exalted this man to his right hand as ruler and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins. We are witnesses of these things, and so is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey him.”
James 4:1-12 (CSB) What is the source of wars and fights among you? Don’t they come from your passions that wage war within you? You desire and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and wage war. You do not have because you do not ask. You ask and don’t receive because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures.
You adulterous people! Don’t you know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? So whoever wants to be the friend of the world becomes the enemy of God. Or do you think it’s without reason that the Scripture says: The spirit he made to dwell in us envies intensely?
But he gives greater grace. Therefore he says:
God resists the proud
but gives grace to the humble.
Therefore, submit to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Be miserable and mourn and weep. Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.
Don’t criticize one another, brothers and sisters. Anyone who defames or judges a fellow believer defames and judges the law. If you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge. There is one lawgiver and judge who is able to save and to destroy. But who are you to judge your neighbor?
James; cast our cares upon him
1. What is the hope of every believer? 2. The New Testaments calls us not to worry or be anxious many times over. But sometimes we do worry. Is that a sin? Why or why not? 3. What is the heart of God in our anxiety, stress, and worries? 4. Does God immediately fixes what is wrong in order soothe us? 5. Read Psalm 22. How did God respond to David in the midst of David's worries and doubts? 6. Read Hosea 2. How does God respond to us?
Christ Our God
Luke 12:35-40 (CSB) “Be ready for service and have your lamps lit. You are to be like people waiting for their master to return from the wedding banquet so that when he comes and knocks, they can open the door for him at once. Blessed will be those servants the master finds alert when he comes. Truly I tell you, he will get ready, have them recline at the table, then come and serve them. If he comes in the middle of the night, or even near dawn, and finds them alert, blessed are those servants. But know this: If the homeowner had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also be ready, because the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.”
Acts 1:1-8 (CSB) I wrote the first narrative, Theophilus, about all that Jesus began to do and teach until the day he was taken up, after he had given instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles he had chosen. After he had suffered, he also presented himself alive to them by many convincing proofs, appearing to them over a period of forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God.
While he was with them, he commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for the Father’s promise. “Which,” he said, “you have heard me speak about; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit in a few days.”
So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, are you restoring the kingdom to Israel at this time?”
He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or periods that the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come on you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
Matthew 25:1-13 (CSB) “At that time the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the groom. Five of them were foolish and five were wise. When the foolish took their lamps, they didn’t take oil with them; but the wise ones took oil in their flasks with their lamps. When the groom was delayed, they all became drowsy and fell asleep.
“In the middle of the night there was a shout: ‘Here’s the groom! Come out to meet him.’
“Then all the virgins got up and trimmed their lamps. The foolish ones said to the wise ones, ‘Give us some of your oil, because our lamps are going out.’
“The wise ones answered, ‘No, there won’t be enough for us and for you. Go instead to those who sell oil, and buy some for yourselves.’
“When they had gone to buy some, the groom arrived, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet, and the door was shut. Later the rest of the virgins also came and said, ‘Master, master, open up for us!’
“He replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I don’t know you!’
“Therefore be alert, because you don’t know either the day or the hour.
1. People say that they can "believe" in God on their deathbed and thus, be saved to God? What do you say? 2. Do we know when Christ will return? 3. Do we know when we will die? 4. Did you ever regret following Christ? 5. Read Luke 14:25-35. What does Christ talk about when he tells us to "count the cost" of following and obeying God?
Christ Our Peace
Luke 12:49-53 (CSB) I came to bring fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already set ablaze! But I have a baptism to undergo, and how it consumes me until it is finished! Do you think that I came here to bring peace on the earth? No, I tell you, but rather division. From now on, five in one household will be divided: three against two, and two against three.
They will be divided, father against son, son against father, mother against daughter, daughter against mother, mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law, and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.”
Ephesians 6:10-12 (CSB) Finally, be strengthened by the Lord and by his vast strength. Put on the full armor of God so that you can stand against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of this darkness, against evil, spiritual forces in the heavens.
1. Does everybody in your family follow and trust God? 2. If somoene in your family doesn't trust God, does that make them your enemy? 3. What are some fights that you can get into within a house that not everybody obeys God? What about with prayer? Fasting? Reading the Bible? Sharing the gospel? Going to church?
Christ Our Judge
1 Corinthians 5:9-13 (CSB) I wrote to you in a letter not to associate with sexually immoral people. I did not mean the immoral people of this world or the greedy and swindlers or idolaters; otherwise you would have to leave the world. But actually, I wrote you not to associate with anyone who claims to be a brother or sister and is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or verbally abusive, a drunkard or a swindler. Do not even eat with such a person. For what business is it of mine to judge outsiders? Don’t you judge those who are inside? God judges outsiders. Remove the evil person from among you.
Matthew 7:1-6 (CSB) “Do not judge, so that you won’t be judged. For you will be judged by the same standard with which you judge others, and you will be measured by the same measure you use. Why do you look at the splinter in your brother’s eye but don’t notice the beam of wood in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the splinter out of your eye,’ and look, there’s a beam of wood in your own eye? Hypocrite! First take the beam of wood out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to take the splinter out of your brother’s eye. Don’t give what is holy to dogs or toss your pearls before pigs, or they will trample them under their feet, turn, and tear you to pieces.
Luke 12:57-59 (CSB) Why don’t you judge for yourselves what is right? As you are going with your adversary to the ruler, make an effort to settle with him on the way. Then he won’t drag you before the judge, the judge hand you over to the bailiff, and the bailiff throw you into prison. I tell you, you will never get out of there until you have paid the last penny.”
1. Why does God commands us to payback what we owe to others? 2. What does it mean to be a good witness of God to others?
Christ Our Righteousness
Luke 13:1-5 (CSB) At that time, some people came and reported to him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mixed with their sacrifices. And he responded to them, “Do you think that these Galileans were more sinful than all the other Galileans because they suffered these things? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish as well. Or those eighteen that the tower in Siloam fell on and killed—do you think they were more sinful than all the other people who live in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish as well.”
Not defined by our circumstances:
Romans 8:28-30 (CSB) We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God, who are called according to his purpose. For those he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, so that he would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. And those he predestined, he also called; and those he called, he also justified; and those he justified, he also glorified.
Not defined by our works:
Matthew 7:21-23 (CSB) “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in your name, drive out demons in your name, and do many miracles in your name?’ Then I will announce to them, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you lawbreakers!’
Isaiah 64:6 (CSB) All of us have become like something unclean,
and all our righteous acts are like a polluted garment;
all of us wither like a leaf,
and our iniquities carry us away like the wind.
Not defined by our own righteousness:
2 Corinthians 5:21 (CSB) He made the one who did not know sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
Not defined by our sin:
Romans 5:8 (CSB) But God proves his own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
1. What did you do to get God to love you? 2. When did God start loving you? 3. How do you get God to love you? 4. If God loves you and "wants everybody to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth" (1 Tim 2:4), what is prevented you from trusting in Christ and changing your mind about sin? 5. If you sinned and you didn't want to repent, what could you do to help you repent? 6. What happens if we do not repent? What happens if we kept on sinning against God?