Sermon Based Group Homework
For the message on September 23, 2018
Passage: Hebrews 3:7-19
This Sunday, Casey continued our series in Hebrews by showing us how to listen to God, especially in the storms of life. Looking back at your notes from this week’s teaching, was there anything you heard for the first time or that caught your attention, challenged or confused you?
GETTING TO KNOW YOU
1. When do struggle to listen to your spouse, close friend, or child the most? When the game is on tv, When you are tired, When there is too much background noise, When you think you can’t be wrong, When you first get home from work/errands, When you’re driving, or other?
2. Casey talked about the importance of listening to God. One of the ways we keep our spiritual ears open is by encouraging one another daily. Can you think of a time in your journey when someone gave you Biblical encouragement that helped you avoid making a bad decision? What encouraging word did they give you?
LET’S GO DEEPER
1. Procrastination towards obedience to God can cause our spiritual hearts to harden. When we don’t act immediately to what we already know we should do, we grow less sensitive to His voice. What truths about listening can you pull out of the following passage in James?
James 1:19-25 (ESV)
19 Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; 20 for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. 21 Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls. 22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. 24 For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. 25 But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.
- Is there a truth in this passage that speaks to you personally concerning your practice of listening to God?
- Based on this passage, what can you do to improve your listening skills?
2. There are times when we are tempted to overlook what we consider the little areas of obedience. When faced with these “little sins”, we might deny our sin, minimize it, or even compare our disobedience to others. This is why it’s so important to be in fellowship with other believers who can encourage us daily before the little things become big things. According to the following verses, what benefits can we find by having friends who will encourage us when we stray off course?
Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 (ESV)
9 Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. 10 For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! 11 Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? 12 And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken.
Galatians 6:1-2 (ESV)
1 Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted. 2 Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.
Proverbs 27:5-6 (ESV)
5 Better is open rebuke than hidden love. 6 Faithful are the wounds of a friend; profuse are the kisses of an enemy.
- Do you have a friend or loved one that loves you enough to lovingly correct you when you begin to stray off course? If not, what do you think it will take to develop this level of trust with someone?
3. The writer of Hebrews warns his readers to not be like the Israelites who miraculously walked out of Egyptian slavery but failed to keep walking in dependence on the Lord during their wilderness wanderings. What does Jesus say about the importance of walking in dependence on Him daily according to the following verses?
Luke 9:23-24 (ESV)
23 And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. 24 For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it.
John 15:5 (ESV)
5 I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.
Luke 12:22-28 (ESV)
22 And he said to his disciples, “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat, nor about your body, what you will put on. 23 For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. 24 Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds! 25 And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? 26 If then you are not able to do as small a thing as that, why are you anxious about the rest? 27 Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 28 But if God so clothes the grass, which is alive in the field today, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will he clothe you, O you of little faith!
- What is one practical thing you can do to walk in closer dependence on the Lord daily?
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?