6. The Ransom (Mark 10:35-45)

October 17, 2021 • Rod Fillinger • Mark 10:35–45

Dear OBC Family, As we continue our series on the cross, we will look at Mark 10:35-45. In this passage, Jesus states that he has come not to be served, but to serve and give his life as a ransom for many. This statement shows the self-understanding of Jesus that he is the Christ, the Messiah of God, who is the atoning sacrifice for sin. The term “ransom” or redemption means a price paid to free someone, like a slave or a prisoner of war. Jesus interprets his impending death on the cross as a substitutionary payment or sacrifice for his people. This understanding parallels the description of the suffering servant in Isaiah 53:10-12. Jesus Christ saw his role as Isaiah’s Servant of the Lord and his death on the cross as a sacrificial atonement for the sins of his people. To prepare for Sunday, read Mark 10:35-45, as well as Isaiah 53. As you read, reflect on what Christ’s sacrifice as the suffering servant of the Lord on the cross means for the ransom of your soul if you are in Christ, especially considering Psalm 49:7-9. May these passages help us understand what Jesus accomplished on the cross to ransom us from sin and death. I look forward to seeing you Sunday and to marveling with you at God’s grace in ransoming us through the sacrifice of the Servant of the Lord. For His Glory and your joy, Pastor Rod --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Discussion & Response Questions for Mark 10:35-45 1. What idolatry do you see underlying James and John’s request? What positive aspects (if any) do you see in their request? 2. What do you want Jesus to do for you? How does this correspond or not correspond with what he has already done for you? 3. How does Jesus’ response to them serve to instruct us? (vv. 38-40) 4. Compare and contrast the response of Jesus to James and John with that of the other 10 disciples. What do we learn about how to disciple or encourage someone from Jesus’ response? 5. Theologically, what is the nature of the ransom paid by the Son of Man? 6. Why is a ransom necessary? What does the ransom accomplish? To whom is it paid? 7. Discuss the following passages on ransom. What is being ransomed? What are the similarities and differences in when ransom can be made and when it cannot, as well as the differences in the ransom that is to be paid? - Ex 13:12–13; Ex 30:11–16; Ex 34:20; Lev 27:1–33; Num 3:40–51; Num 18:14–17 - Ex 21:28–32 - Lev 25:25–28; Lev 25:47–55; Ruth 4:1–13; Prov 13:8 - Lev 27:9; Nu 35:31–32 - Ps 49:7-8; Ex 30:12-16; Job 33:24 - Isa 51:11, 40:2, 43:3-5; Jer 31:11; Hos 13:14 - Acts 20:28; 1 Tim 2:5–6; Tit 2:14; Heb 9:15; 2 Pet 2:1 - 1 Cor 6:19-20, 7:23; 1 Pet 1:18–19; Rev 5:9 8. Reflect on the Son of Man’s service toward you in giving his life for your ransom. How should we respond to this reality?

12. The Cross of Christ Demonstrates, Defines, and Diffuses the Love of God (1 John 4:7-12)

November 28, 2021 • David Schrock • 1 John 4:7–12

Where do you look when you don’t feel the love of God? This Sunday we will look to 1 John 4 to answer that question. And what we will find is that the unchanging and objective work of God also has a personal and subjective application to all those who are in Christ. Indeed, the cross not only does something for us, it does something to us. And this Sunday we will see what that is. To prepare for Sunday, take time to read 1 John. While our focus will be on 1 John 4:7–12, the whole book is aimed to give assurance to God’s people, all the while exposing unbelief. So take time to read and pray for our gathering. I look forward to seeing you Sunday, as the Lord allows, and to worshipping Christ with you. For His Glory and your joy, Pastor David --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Discussion & Response Questions for 1 John 4 1. What have you learned so far this fall about the cross? 2. Why is it important to first see the cross as something Christ achieved (“It is finished”) before seeing it as something where God displays his love? 3. What does John say about love in 1 John 4? 4. In what ways is it difficult to know or embrace God’s love? 5. What does the cross teach us about God’s love? And how does it produce love in us? 6. How does the church, who is dedicated to the cross, show the love of God? 7. What else did you learn about the love of God? 8. Who needs to hear from you about the love of God?

11. Reconciliation (Colossians 1:15-2:15)

November 21, 2021 • David Schrock • Colossians 1:15—2:15

Since the start of our series on the cross, one recurring theme we have seen is the way that judgment and salvation are paired. In the Passover, God saved his firstborn and judged Egypt’s firstborns. At the Red Sea, God saved his people and destroyed Pharaoh and his army. Just the same, as I read 2 Kings 3 this week, I found this theme again. The water that God provided to save Israel is the same water that brought the Moabites to their death. In short, God’s judgment is never without salvation. And his salvation is never without judgment. From the flood of Noah to the end of time, we find salvation and judgment. And this week, we will see how Paul joins these two works of God in the cross of Christ. In Colossians 1:20, Paul says that the blood of Christ’s cross is reconciling all of creation. And in what follows (1:21–2:23) he explains how that happens – through salvation and judgment. In these two chapters Paul identifies whom the cross saves and whom the cross judges. And for us, as we keep our eyes fixed on Christ, we will see how the cross has cosmic, as well as personal implications. To prepare for Sunday, take time to read Colossians—it’s not long. On Sunday, we will start with Colossians 1:20 and then follow Paul’s twofold explanation of Christ’s cosmic reconciliation that relates to salvation and judgment. I can’t wait to see you Sunday, as the Lord allows, and to worship the risen Christ with you. For His Glory and your joy, Pastor David --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Discussion & Response Questions for Colossians 1-2 1. How has the pattern of salvation and judgment been seen in the Bible? And how has that pattern helped you better understand the cross? 2. In what ways does Paul speak of the cross in Colossians? And how do the creation themes relate to the cross? 3. Look at Colossians 1:20. What does this verse not mean? (Hint: No universal salvation) And how do make sense of what it does mean? (Hint: keep reading the letter) 4. Paul uses the word “reconciliation” in Colossians 1:20 and 1:22. This is the same word, but is it used in the same way? If not, why not? How do we know? 5. According to Colossians 1–2, how does Christ reconcile the cosmos? Why does this matter? 6. What does the cross do for God’s elect (Col. 3:9)? Where do we see that in the text? (Hint: 1:21–23; 2:11–14) 7. What does the cross do for God’s enemies? Where do we see that in the text? (Hint: 2:15) 8. What does penal substitution mean? What does Christus Victor mean? How do they relate? And how do they resonate with the storyline of salvation and judgment? 9. How do we apply these two aspects of the cross? Look at 1:24–2:8 and 2:16–23. 10. What else do you see in Colossians 1–2?

10. The Righteousness of God Revealed (Romans 3:21-30)

November 14, 2021 • David Schrock • Romans 3:21–30, Psalm 32

Know justice, know peace. No justice, no peace. For the last few years, the theme of justice has filled America’s pulpits and public discourse. Yet, for all the attention given to it, there remains an insufficient understanding of this precious virtue. In Scripture, the God of justice, the righteous God of Israel, displays his justice in ways beyond his sending of prophets to decry Israel’s sin. Yes, the Old Testament has numerous prophets condemning Israel for their sins of injustice and idolatry. Just read Isaiah 5 or Amos 5. Yet, the prophets' main message centers on the coming messiah and the justice, make that the justification, that he will bring. Indeed, justice apart from justification is a pronouncement of law without gospel. Not surprisingly, a world that does not know the grace of the gospel will call for justice based upon their fallen understandings of law. However, for Christians, when we speak of justice, we must begin with God and follow his Word until it brings us to Christ’s cross. For on the cross, we see justice and justification. And this Sunday we will learn from Paul in Romans 3:21–31 what justice truly looks like. In preparation for Sunday, take time to read Romans 1–3. These chapters hang together and show us both our guilt before God and his grace in justifying sinners. This is the center of God’s gospel and the way that he brings justice into the world. Therefore, for Christians led by the Spirit and the Word, a call for justice is a call to seek the grace of God. And on Sunday, we will do just that. As the Lord allows, I look forward to seeing you Sunday and to worshiping the God of justice and justification! For His Glory and your joy, Pastor David --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Discussion & Response Questions for Romans 3:21-31 1. How is justice discussed today? In what ways is the rise of “justice-talk” helpful? Or unhelpful? 2. Where do we find the source and substance of justice? 3. What is the relationship between righteousness and justice? What are the ways Scripture talks about righteousness-justice? 4. How does Paul talk about justice in Romans 3:21–31? Why does it matter so much that Christians always connect justice to justification? 5. How did God reveal his righteousness? Was this revelation merely a display, or did this revelation do something? 6. What did the cross achieve, according to Romans 3:24–26? 7. Take time to talk about the three background images of these verses—the temple and altar (propitiation), the exodus/marketplace (redemption), and the law court (justification). How do these background images help us understand the cross? 8. What is the relationship between grace and faith, grace and justice, faith and justification? 9. How does Romans 3:21–31 help you know God? His Son? Your sin? Your salvation?