Getting to know you: What is something you have pursued in your life? A goal, a person, an object . . . something you’ve been willing to focus for, sacrifice for, been determined to secure for yourself? How long did you pursue it? Did you attain it? What was that like? Did anything change in your thinking/feelings/behavior in the process of that pursuit?
Getting to know the Bible:
1) Off the top of your head, how would you define or describe what is the Kingdom of God is or is like?
2) What would the Jews have thought the Kingdom of God was about at the time of Jesus’ birth?
a. Read Exodus 19:3-6
3) What did Jesus say the Kingdom of God was like/about?
a. Read Luke 4:14-30
b. Read Mark’s version of the above story in Mark 1:14-15 [note both accounts immediately follow the temptation in the desert and are followed by Jesus’ cleansing of the man with the unclean spirit]
c. Read Matthew 5:3-12
4) What does Jesus’ take on the Old Testament show us about what God has always had in mind with regards to the poor and the Kingdom of God? Read at least two of the following:
a. Deuteronomy 14:22-29;
b. Deuteronomy 15:1-18;
c. Leviticus 19:1-10;
d. Leviticus 25:1-28;
e. Leviticus 19:11-19 (do not favor poor or wealthy)
How do I apply myself to this message?
What does the reality of the Kingdom of God and its nature do to instruct how we can a) think about God’s plan for the world around us b) feel towards God, and feel towards people around us and c) live our lives accordingly?