Revere the presence

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1. Revere the Presence  |  10/10/21

Study questions

1.  Read Genesis 15:12-14 Consider all of the events that needed to happen in order for Joseph’s family to end up in Egypt as God had planned.  How does this encourage you about God’s sovereignty - that God's in control of all the events of your life?

2.  Read Genesis 45:5-11.  What’s your reaction to the reality that God was responsible for displacing His people?  

     a)  What changes or unsettling events are in your life, and what difference does an understanding of God’s sovereignty make in the way you approach them?

3.  What good came out of God's people being mistreated in Egypt?  

     a)  Read Hebrews 12:4-8.  How might our suffering be part of God’s plan for us ? 

     b)  Read Romans 8:28.  How might our suffering be part of God’s plan for others? 

4.  Read Genesis 15:151 Timothy 2:4, and 2 Peter 3:9.  Why does God make His people endure for a long time? 

     a)  How does prove God’s care for others? 

     b)  Do you trust God enough to endure difficult times, without your prayers for deliverance being answered, in order for others to be saved?

5.  What does it look like for us to trust God when we don’t like or understand what’s happening in our lives?

6.  What's going on for you right now that is unsettling or difficult?  How can you see God’s glory in your suffering?

2. God's Character in Our Calling  |  10/17/21

Study questions

1.  Read Exodus 2:23-25 and 3:7.  God doesn't just see the Israelites, He's been watching them the whole time and has been concerned for them.  What difference does it make to know that God is fully aware of your hardship as you go through it?

     a)  Does it make it harder or easier knowing He sees and cares, even though it seems like He does nothing about it?  Why?

3.  Read Exodus 3:13-16.  God reveals who He is to Moses, using His personal name ('The Lord' = Jehovah) and His general name ('God' = Elohim).  Why do you think God did this?

4.  How had God prepared Moses for the task of leading His people out of Egypt?

     a)  Read James 1:2-4.  Knowing that even in our difficult and tedious times God is still at work in us, maturing and preparing us for His purpose, how should that affect how we respond to these times?

     b)  How could that impact our response to the challenges of the CoVid pandemic?

5.  Read Exodus 4:11-12 and Isaiah 50:10-11.  God is a holy God who keeps His promises to help and enable His people.  What hope does this give you today?

6.  Read Exodus 4:13-17.  God is angry with Mose's lack of faith and unwillingness to obey Him, yet He graciously allows for it and provides assistance where Moses lacks confidence.  How should we respond to God's grace?  Should we be encouraged in our natural resistance to God?  Why/why not?

7.  John Calvin said: “It is certain that man never achieves a clear knowledge of himself unless he has first looked upon God’s face.”  What do you think he meant by that?

   a)  What do you need to do to ensure you 'look upon God's face'?

3. Living Out of Control  |  10/24/21

Study questions

1.  Read Exodus 7:3-510:1-211:1-3.  As the narrative of the plagues unfolds why do you think God included these glimpses of what was happening in the spiritual realm, and of how He was controlling the events?

2.  Read Isaiah 45:7Ecclesiastes 7:14, and Lamentations 3:38.   What do these verses clearly teach us about God?

     a)  Why do we find it so hard to accept that even bad things are under God’s control?

3.  Read Romans 9:17-24.  How does this biblical perspective of God and our lives change the way we respond to God and to what happens to us?

4.  Read Isaiah 40:22-26.  Sit and reflect on these words.  What is God saying to you through them?

5. Read Exodus 5:22-23.  When Moses obeyed God but things didn’t go as he expected, he went back and moaned and even subtly blamed God for not doing what He said He’d do.  Have you ever been discouraged or disillusioned by the outcome of obeying God?  If so, why?

     a)  How is our reluctance to trust God again effectively the same as blaming Him?

6.  Complaining to God (or blaming Him) effectively means we see Him as being accountable to us.  How is it possible that we can get to a point where we treat God as an equal?

7.  How can you live in less control—trusting that God is in control—this week?

4. Fear God and You Won't Have to Fear Anything Else  |  10/31/21

Study questions

1.  Read Exodus 13:1-16.  Because of the Passover, the firstborn sons effectively belonged to God.  Now read Hebrews 12:23 and 1 Corinthians 6:19-20.  How does belonging to God change the way we live our lives and make decisions?

2.  Read Exodus 14:1-410-12.  Have you ever felt like obeying God has led to you feeling trapped in your circumstances?  Why?

3.  Read Exodus 14:13-14Philippians 1:6 and 1 Corinthians 10:13.  What are the things of God we can stand firm on?

4.  Read Exodus 14:23-28 and 1 Corinthians 12:7-9.  God used the obstacle of the Red Sea to deliver the Israelites.  What are the things you're trying to escape from that God might be trying to use to save you?

     a)  Read John 9:1-3.  What difficulty or hardship might God be using to display His glory in your life?

5.  Read Exodus 14:30-31.  What works of God have you witnessed that have drawn a similar response of awe and reverence from you?

     a)  Read Joshua 4:3-24.  Is this purpose of God (that you fear Him) visible in your life?  Why/why not?

     b)  Read Exodus 15:1-3.  How might the fear and awe of God cause you to praise Him?

5. Trials in the Wilderness  |  11/7/21

Study questions

1.  Read Exodus 15:22-27. The Israelites experience their first problem in the wilderness - the lack of water. How do they respond to their situation? How does God respond to their situation? Can you relate to the Israelites in this story? Why or why not?

2.  Read Exodus 17:1-7 and Numbers 20:2-13Oftentimes in the bible the biblical authors will use repeated literary patterns to highlight overarching themes or communicate important motifs. How are these two passages similar to Exodus 15:22-27? How are they different? What are some of the main ideas you see being communicated in these passages?

3.  The wilderness setting in the bible frequently symbolizes a time of testing and difficulty. Have you ever felt like God has led you into “the wilderness?” What are those times like for you?

4.  Read Deuteronomy 8:1-6. What does this passage have to say about the reasons behind God testing His people in the wilderness? What are the Israelites ultimately commanded to do? Is this something you do in your own life?

5.  Read John 6:31-59. Jesus describes Himself as the “bread of life” and the “bread that came down from heaven.” How is Jesus similar to the manna the Israelites received in the wilderness? How is He different?

6.  During His life here on earth, Jesus does what the Israelites couldn’t - He passes the tests set before Him. What does this mean for us personally? How should we respond to this truth in our own lives?

6. Trust and Devotion  |  11/14/21

Study questions

1.  Read Exodus 32:1-6 

      a.     Chuck pointed out that the Israelites kept looking to Moses or Aaron to solve their problems. Are there places in                      your life where you look to other people first, rather than to God?

2.  Tim Keller states in his book Counterfeit Gods, an idol is “anything more important to you than God, anything that absorbs your heart and imagination more than God, and anything that you seek to give you what only God can give.”

      a.     What are the things that absorb your heart and imagination?

      b.     Are there places where these things are a higher priority than God?

3.  Read 2 Corinthians 1:3-4

     a.     What are the things that you seek out for comfort when you should be seeking God?

4.    When stress enters your life, do you “check out” of life to try and recoup?

     a.     What are the things you invest in during these times?

     b.     Instead of “checking out” what would it look like if you checked in with God?

5.  Read Exodus 20:8-1

     a.     Is the Sabbath something that you have practiced?  Or still practice?  Why or why not?

     b.     What are the barriers you experience that keep you from taking a sabbath rest?

     c.     What would it look like if you made this a weekly rhythm?

     d.     What are the things that you would do to invest in yourself and your relationship with God? 

     e.     Why not start now?