MONDAY, JUNE 27
Connect: Matthew 12
- What blasphemy did Jesus say would not be forgiven in contrast to that which would be forgiven? 12:31-32.
- What constitutes blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. Why would it not be forgiven?
- What is the point of the illustration of the tree and its fruit – 12:33? What application did this have to the Pharisees – 12:34?
- If the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, then is this not the one transgression that can make Chrisitans lose salvation? How do we know whether or not we have committed this sin? Because blasphemy of the Spirit is a willful suppression of the truth about Christ, theologians agree that Christians who worry if they have committed this sin likely have not done so. Those who willfully deny the truth would have no concern for the state of their souls, for they have chosen consciously not to affirm what they know to be real. Pray today that you would never suppress God’s truth and ask him to reveal himself to you through his Word
TUESDAY, JUNE 28
Connect: Jonah 1 & 2
- What command did God give Jonah in 1:2? What reason did God give?
- How did Jonah respond to God’s command – 1:3? Where is Tarshish?
- What reason is given for the way Jonah responded?
- We might be tempted to look down on Jonah for fleeing to Tarshish. However, when we remember how many times we ignore God’s call, we realize that we are no better than the prophet. When Jesus commands us to do something, we need to heed his words immediately or repent when we fail to do so. Are you putting off or ignoring the call of Christ? Repent of that today, and begin to fulfill what the Lord wants you to do
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 29
Connect: Jonah 3 & 4
- What instruction did God once again give to Jonah – 3:1,2?
- What can we learn from this about the responsibility of preachers and all who are called to share the gospel?
- How did the people of Nineveh respond to Jonah’s message
- God’s word always achieves the purpose for which is ultimately intended (Isa. 55:10-11). Sometimes his promise of judgment prompts people to repent, as it did when Jonah preached to Nineveh. Sometimes it makes people harden their hearts against the Lord, as it did when Moses spoke to Pharaoh. In both cases, however, it did what it was supposed to do. We can likewise be confident that his word will achieve his purposes when we faithfully share his gospel.
THURSDAY, JUNE 30
Connect: Hebrews 6 and Matthew 12:22-45
- What subject is discussed in 6:4-8? Why did the Hebrews need to consider this?
- What are the characteristics of the people discussed in verses 4 and 5?
- Have you ever doubted your salvation?
- Have you ever put up an intellectual smoke screen – a difficult question or apparent contradiction in the Bible – as an excuse for unbelief? Have you had a friend do that as you were sharing your faith?
- The Pharisees had a hidden motive for not believing in Jesus. What are some of the hidden motives that have kept your friends or family away from faith? Why did Jesus make his own resurrection the focal point of faith? Why is it such a big deal?
- Since you want to believe, you have not blasphemed the Holy Spirit, but what are some of the ways you have resisted his promptings to become more obedient to Jesus?
FRIDAY, JULY 1
Connect: Hebrews 10
- What was the relationship between the law and the things of the New Testament
- What could Old Testament sacrifices not do?
- What reason is given to prove those sacrifices could not perfect people?
- God instituted the old covenant sacrifices to show his people their need for atonement. But they, like the new covenant saints, only enjoy forgiveness because of the atonement of Christ accomplished by the shedding of his perfect blood. When you celebrate the Lord’s Supper, remember to thank Christ for his blood shed for you.
SATURDAY, JULY 2
Connect: 1 John 5
- Who is begotten (born) of God?
- What does this begetting (birth) mean regarding love?
- What does it mean to love God?
- While it is certainly true that the new birth is central to salvation, many evangelicals do not understand that it occurs prior to our profession of faith. The new birth is not something that comes as a result of a work between the Spirit and our faith; rather it is the work of the Spirit alone that changes our hearts, and as a result, we have faith. Today’s passage clearly informs us that our act of believing in his name is the result of our being first born of God.
SUNDAY, JULY 3
Connect: Proverbs 1
- How do you define “wisdom,” “instruction,” and “understanding.”?
- What is the source of true wisdom?
- What are some methods that evil people use to entice others to participate with them in sin?
- Biblical faith is not believing in something without reason, it is believing the Lord because Scripture gives us every reason for trusting in him. Faith is not antithetical to reason, for true rationality upholds an allegiance to the Lord Jesus. Take some time to consider how you would respond to the question: “Why are you a Christian?” Seek to be equipped to give reasons for the hope that is within you.