Series: Promise Keeper
Title: Against All Expectations
Text: Matthew 2:19-23

God always keeps His word, but He often does so in ways that defy human expectations. The question is, will we still trust Him when He does not act according to our plan or schedule?

Perspective Questions:

  1. What is a promise of God that you always hold on to? Is it found and based upon the Word of God or based on fine-sounding inspirational philosophies? If it is based on the Word, what are some assumptions you have about how God will fulfil them? What will help you to persist in believing and holding on to them when expectations and reality do not match?

  2. What are some past experiences or weaknesses that cause us to doubt that God delights to work through us? How have these affected our confidence in God? What assumptions about God do our doubts reveal? What do these assumptions show about our understanding of God’s character? How does learning that God works through people the world despises help us in addressing these assumptions and doubts?

Application Questions:

  1. Who are the people in your life that you tend to despise or shun away from? What assumptions do we have of them that cause us to despise them? How can you look back at the example of Christ and be encouraged to bring the message of salvation, hope and love to them this Christmas? What is something you can do to bring them one step closer to Christ this season?

Series: Promise Keeper
Title: In The Face of Evil
Text: Matthew 2:13-18

Jesus, the promised King and Saviour, arrived on earth not to cheers and applause from men, but to murderous threats on His life. What can we learn from Jesus’ difficult childhood that will help us to hold onto God’s promises even in the face of evil?

Perspective Questions:

  1. Evil stems from human selfishness – humans do what they want even when it violates God’s will and hurt others. In this sense, all of us are capable of evil. What then, can help us to resist evil and live righteously?

  2. When bad things happen to good people, we are understandably confused and even angry. In such times, what are some promises from God that we can hold onto that can help to deepen our faith?

Application Questions:

  1. Who can you think of needs to know that God is a faithful God even in times of trouble and uncertainty? How can you bring this truth to this person?

  2. God kept His promise to send Jesus to the Cross to die for the sins of the world. Because of Jesus’ sacrifice, we can be right with God and live with Him for all eternity. This is our hope, even if we have to struggle through life! How can we tell those who feel hopeless and helpless that the King has come for them to save them and give them the hope of an eternal life with God?

The birth of Jesus brought hope to the Israelites that their God heard their cries and fulfilled His promise to them.
God is still faithful to us in the challenging times we live in today.
This Christmas, discover and celebrate the promises God has given us through Christ!

Series: Galatians – Freedom in the Gospel
Children of the Promise
Text: Galatians 4:21-31

In Christ, we are children born through God’s promise and born by the power of the Spirit. How does understanding who we are in Christ affect our resolve to resist the way of law and persist in the way of grace? 

Perspective Questions:

  1. In verse 21, Paul accuses the Galatians of wanting to be under the law. What are some reasons why believers would want to put themselves under some kind of law? What are the pitfalls of doing so?

  2. Many people see the Christian faith as a set of rules and regulations.  We know this is not true, why then do we give that impression? What then is the true heart of Christianity and how is it practised in our lives?

Application Questions:

  1. Over the whole series, we have been tracing Paul’s argument that we can be right with God only by faith in Christ. Paul uses several approaches to make his case – he appealed to the Galatians’ experiences with God (Gal 3:1-6), scriptural arguments (Gal 3:7-14), relatable illustrations from daily life (Gal 3:15-4:7), his pastoral heart for them (Gal 4:8-20), and creative analogies from Scripture (Gal 4:21-31). 

    Which of these approaches are you most familiar with? How can you use some of these approaches to help believers in your community live more by faith?

  2. How can we resolve to live as children of the promise i.e. to resist the way of law and persist in the way of grace?