Sermon Based Group Homework
For the message on February 3, 2019
Passage: Hebrews 11:1, 6-7
This Sunday, Casey continued our series in Hebrews by explaining what an authentic faith in Jesus looks like in a troubled world.
GETTING TO KNOW YOU
1. In chapter 11, the writer trots out character after character who demonstrated forward-looking faith in God. What are you most looking forward to about heaven?
2. What has challenged what you really believe about God, the Bible, and Christianity this past year? What conclusions have you arrived at?
LET’S GO DEEPER
1. In the message Sunday, Casey explained that Biblical faith is being confident in what God can and will do in the future, even though we fail to see it right now. What can you learn from the follow verses about the nature of Biblical faith?
1 Peter 1:8 (ESV)
8 Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory,
2 Corinthians 4:18 (ESV)
18 as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.
Proverbs 3:5-6 (ESV)
5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. 6 In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.
- What gives you confidence that God will reward you in the future for current faithfulness? What keeps you trusting, even when life gets hard?
2. Casey also explained that the rewards for our faith will require patience on our part because those rewards may not come in this life but the next. What do the following verses promise about our future rewards?
1 Timothy 6:17-19 (ESV)
17 As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. 18 They are to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share, 19 thus storing up treasure for themselves as a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is truly life.
1 Peter 1:3-9 (ESV)
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, 5 who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 6 In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 8 Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, 9 obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
Matthew 6:19-20 (ESV)
19 “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.
- Why is the idea of delayed rewards sometimes a difficult reality for Christians in our culture to grasp?
- What difficulty or trial in your life is currently stretching your faith and causing you to exercise the most patience? What promise of God are you hanging onto the most?
3. The essence of Biblical faith is obeying God. It’s one thing to say we believe God but it’s a completely different thing to base our actions on those beliefs. How do the following verses challenge you to put your faith into action?
James 2:14-26 (ESV)
14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? 17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. 18 But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. 19 You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder! 20 Do you want to be shown, you foolish person, that faith apart from works is useless? 21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? 22 You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works; 23 and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”—and he was called a friend of God. 24 You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. 25 And in the same way was not also Rahab the prostitute justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way? 26 For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead.
- The sign of an authentic faith in Christ is not perfection but a new direction of thought and affections and behavior. What is the biggest change that knowing Jesus has brought into your life? What is one area you want Jesus to change in you over the coming weeks?
TAKE IT HOME
1. Looking back at this week’s teaching and study, is there one thing you’d especially like to remember this week?
2. Do you have any prayer requests for your group?