Luke II - Follow
Sermons Available: 10
May 3, 2020 • Robb Esperat
JUSTIFICATION When you go to God in prayer, what are your most common habits of thought and emotion? What might they tell you about how you relate to God? Read Luke 18:9-14. This parable contrasts two strategies for justification. What were the 3 contrasts mentioned in the sermon today? Are there any other contrasts you see? In Philip Eveson’s essay on the doctrine of justification, he introduces justification as a grace given to “guilty sinners, who turn in self-despairing trust.” What is meant by ‘self-despairing trust’? How does the tax collector embody it? What would it look like for someone in our day? Everyone struggles with self-righteousness to some degree. Review the ‘diagnostic questions’ from the sermon. Which question is most helpful to you in identifying your own tendencies toward self justification? Do you have a tendency to look down on others with a critical eye? Does your sense of personal goodness, acceptability, and self worth rise and fall according to how well you think you are performing? When you think about your ‘righteousness bank account’, are you worn out from trying to make deposits to keep it (hopefully) in the black, or are you resting in the finished work of Jesus’ merciful atonement? End your time in celebration of God’s merciful atonement for sinners. Review this list of verses on justification (or another list of your choosing). Speak verses to one another and to the Lord by ‘personalizing’ the address. For instance: “Joe, Phil 3:9 says you are ‘found in Him, not having a righteousness of your own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, a righteousness from God that depends on faith.” “Katie, just like Abraham, you have believed the Lord, and he has counted it to you as righteousness (Gen 15:6)!” “Lord, you yourself bore our sins in your body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By your wounds, we have been healed. Thank you! (1 Peter 2:24) MAY 3, 2020
The Difference that makes the Difference
April 19, 2020 • Zach Hardison
1. What are the contrasts to highlight the differences the rich and poor man experienced in life? 2. What are the contrasts after death? 3. What is the significance of Jesus mentioning Abraham in this story? 4. In the story, Jesus only seems to highlight that which the rich man failed to DO in life that led him to eternal suffering in hell. Is Jesus teaching a works-based salvation? 5. The name Lazarus means “whom God helps.” Share some ways that God has helped you through Jesus Christ.
The Joy of Finding
Easter • April 12, 2020 • Robb Esperat
Happy Easter! He is risen! What about ‘normal life’ are you missing most during this COVID-19 lock down? How do you find joy in the midst of this crisis (or any crisis)? Read Luke 15:1-7. To whom does Jesus direct his parable? Why did he tell it to them? Peruse Luke 15:8-32. Here, Jesus tells two more parables that mirror the first one about the sheep & the shepherd. Which words from the first parable are repeated over and over in the other parables? In what way[s] do the parables differ/progress? What do these details tell us about what Jesus is trying to communicate? Read Luke 15:17-20, 25-30. Describe in your own words the action of each son toward his father. How does his father respond to each? What do these interactions tell us about the heart of God? In his sermon, Robb focused mainly on the relationship between the father and the younger son. What is the role of the older son, in light of Jesus’ audience (v1-2)? What message/application might the Lord have today for those of us who have been part of the ‘religious insider’ group for some time? Today is a day to worship and celebrate. Take time to sing, pray, feast and enjoy the Father’s heart of love toward you. Respond wholeheartedly to his love by drawing near to him in JOY.
The Humble Friend
Palm Sunday • April 5, 2020 • Robb Esperat
Sermon: The Humble Friend Luke 14:11 For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.” Sermon Discussion Questions What is the fanciest meal you’ve ever been to? How did it make you feel to attend? Read Luke 14:1-6. How would you describe the relationship between Jesus & the religious leaders in this story? Why do you think the lawyers and Pharisees failed to answer Jesus’ questions? Read Luke 14:7-11. In this parable, what actions does the host perform? How does this parable describe the events that took place in vv1-6? Jesus’ parable ends with a proverb in v11. This proverb is a classic example of the ‘divine passive’, a way of expressing the action of God without naming him (as a way of showing reverence). What does this punctuating statement tell us about the character of God? Read Philippians 2:6-11. How does this ancient Christ hymn illustrate the principle of the parable in Luke 14? Read Philippians 3:4-9. What did Paul have to abandon in order to ‘humble himself’ and receive Christ (vv5-6)? What kinds of things might we put in a similar list? What 'false confidence’ might you personally need to set aside in order to know the fullness of fellowship with Jesus?
The Host & the Hen
March 29, 2020 • Robb Esperat
Sermon: THE HOST & THE HEN Sermon Discussion Questions Take a moment to share about an area of life where you’ve experienced loss or disruption as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. How are you processing the disruption? Is there a silver lining? Read Luke 13:22-30. What question precipitated this dialog with Jesus (v23)? Why do you think Jesus chooses a banquet to illustrate salvation? Which character in the story represents Jesus? What is the character’s role? What is Jesus communicating to us about himself? Jesus speaks about a ‘narrow door’ in v24. In what way is the door narrow? What is he telling us about the opportunity to enter into salvation? Read Luke 13:31-35. In the previous passage, Jesus likens himself to the host of a great banquet. What image does he use in this passage to describe himself (v34)? What is the imagery meant to communicate? We all have ‘mother hens’, or places we run to for security and comfort. What ‘hens’ in our culture have proven to be false securities during the COVID-19 pandemic? What other ‘hens’ keep people from finding refuge in Jesus? What hens are you personally tempted to turn to, rather than turning to Jesus? Take some time to worship Jesus for who he reveals himself to be in Luke 13. Pray together for one another & for the world around you. Explore Further Take some time to review this chart of the meals of Jesus recorded in Luke’s gospel. Some scholars see the meal narratives as the basic narrative framework of the book. What do we learn about Jesus, his mission, and his focus from these meals? 5:27-32 Banquet at Levi’s House 7:36-50 Dinner at Simon’s House 9:10-17 Feeding the 5,000 10:38-42 Hospitality at the home of Mary and Martha 11:37-52 Dinner at a Pharisee’s House 14:1-24 Sabbath Meal at a Pharisee’s House 19:1-10 Hospitality at the home of Zacchaeus 22:14-38 The Last Supper 24:28-32 Breaking Bread at Emmaus 24:36-43 Jesus Eats Meal in Presence of Disciples
FUTURE SHAPED: LIVING WITH ETERNITY IN VIEW
March 22, 2020 • Clark Halstead
Discussion Questions 1. Share a moment when you did not believe the eventual would become the actual and you were “found out” by the future. 2. Which of the stories in this passage did you connect with most? (Rich man and barns, Good Servant, Unfaithful Servant, Fig Tree) 3. In the 4 Keys to discerning real followers, which was most convicting to you? 4. How would you answer the question, “What is the best news you could get today?” Be honest. 5. In general, do you think of God’s return as a burdensome event, or as a joyous reunion? 6. Of the truths in this passage about real followers of Jesus, which is most significant to you and why? 7. As you think about the faithful servant, what would look different about your life if you were expectantly waiting on Jesus return, but didn’t know when he was coming back? Explore · Read chapter 11 and especially the portion at the end concerning the Pharisees. Think about the three main groups that Jesus addresses, Pharisees, crowd, disciples. How does his address to each have a different tone? · How do we understand that Luke 12:1-Luke 13:9 is a literary unit of Luke? · Read John 15, who do you think each character in the parable of the fig tree (in Luke 13) represents? · Should we be overly concerned about the more severe punishments and the less severe punishments in the second story about the servants? Is this a main point of the story? Is there ever a time when being punished by God is not a big deal? · Think about the Pharisees declaring that Jesus works were from the devil (in Luke 11 or the parallel Mark 3) and Peter denying Christ, and Jesus saying that anyone who says a word against the Son of man can be forgiven, but anyone who blasphemes the Holy Spirit cannot be forgiven. What’s going on there?