MONDAY, October 3
Connect: Luke 19
- In the parable of the minas why did the nobleman leave?
- How was this like Jesus?
- What charge did he give his servants?
- What did he do when he returned?
- What had the last servant done with the money the master entrusted him? What excuse did he offer?
- Whom did he blame for his unfaithfulness?
- As with most of Jesus’ parables the parable of the minas reveals something about the kingdom of God. Jesus discloses his imminent departure from Earth upon accomplishing the work that the Father had given him. As he departed he gave us gifts, and he expects us to use these gifts that we might offer him something on his return. When the King returns in triumph, he will call us to account for how we’ve used what we have been given – our time, talents, and treasure. Consider what you’ve been given and how you can put these to use for your King,
TUESDAY, October 4
Connect: Psalm 118
- According to verse 1, why do we give thanks to God?
- Why is the psalmist not afraid in verse 6?
- Why did the psalmist cry out?
- What was the Lord’s response?
- Knowing God fights for us is easier to confess with our mouths than to believe in our hearts. We have to repeatedly turn to the promises that God makes that he will fight for those that fight with him. No foe is too great for the Lord to handle, and so we praise him in battle, knowing that he will bring the final victory.
WEDNESDAY, October 5
Connect: Acts 17
- How did Paul introduce his message to the Athenians?
- What does God not need from men, and what proves He does not need it?
- If we want to find God, what should we do and what assurance is there of success?
- What event proves men must repent? What proves this event will occur?
- Paul’s speech at the Areopagus in Athens provides significant insight into his way of proclaiming the gospel and defending its truth in a pagan culture. When presenting the gospel to those who had no scriptural knowledge, Paul found points of common ground. He did not, however compromise gospel claims or dumb it down. Before we debate the beliefs of others we should be sure we understand the gospel. It isn’t until we know the truth that we can recognize counterfeits. Do you know what your neighbors believe, and are you ready to answer their questions? Let’s seek to equip ourselves to defend and proclaim our faith.
THURSDAY, October 6
Connect:1 Corinthians 15
- In what sense is death “the last enemy”?
- What does it mean for all things to be “under his feet”?
- What does 15:28 say will be the final outcome of Jesus’ coming?
- Have you ever thought of Jesus as a political figure? Does that resonate with you or seem unsettling? Why?
- If Jesus were the president of the world, what do you think his agenda would look like?
- What is the difference between claiming Jesus as Savior and acclaiming him as Lord?
- If you were campaigning for Jesus, what would your strategy be to make him famous?
FRIDAY, October 7
Connect: Revelation 11
- What power is given to two witnesses – 11:3? For how long?
- What are other passages about the significance of two or three witnesses?
- What are the two witnesses compared to in 11:4?
- What is symbolized in the Bible by light (lamps)?
- Multiple Old Testament texts serve as background for much of the imagery present in the book of Revelation. Often these symbols are applied in new ways to our current covenant context. The description of the two witnesses in chapter 11 is no exception. Revelation 11:4 tells us that these two witnesses “are the two olive trees and the two lampstands that stand before the Lord of the earth.” In the Old Testament Zechariah had a vision of two olive trees that represented the leaders of Israel after the exile, the governor and the high priest. These leaders pointed forward to Christ who would serve as both king and priest of his people. These olive trees are also lampstands, which John tells us in Chapter 1 v.20 represent churches. Given this, it is likely that the two witnesses represent the church in between Christ’s ascension and return. Like the prophets of the Old Testament, the church is tasked with proclaiming God’s judgment and the need for repentance. This preaching is not well received by the unrepentant world so it’s not surprising that they want to kill the church and celebrate when God’s people are martyred. Even when it seems that the church is defeated however, it is only for a brief time. The church cannot be defeated because she is protected by Christ and will accomplish her mission.
SATURDAY, October 8
Connect: Revelation 12
- What was the result of the battle between the dragon and Michael?
- How is the dragon described here?
- What is the significance of the dragon’s being cast down to earth?
- What did the loud voice say?
- Verses 7-9 of chapter 12 describes a battle in heaven between the archangel Michael and his angels, and Satan with his angels. Michael and his angels prevail resulting in Satan and his angels being cast out of heaven and down to earth. This battle gives us a picture of Satan’s failure to defeat Christ. Satan suffered a decisive defeat and was removed from heaven where he once accused God’s people. The atonement of Jesus has negated Satan’s accusations because we are now clothed in Christ’s perfect righteousness. Jesus delivered the final blow, and even though Satan continues to fight against the church we are able to withstand his attacks by the power of Christ’s blood.
SUNDAY, October 9
Connect: Philippians 4
- What are the things on which Paul says we should meditate – 4:8?
- How can this help us in our choices and conduct, such as in entertainment, priorities, spirituality, courage, etc.?
- How does the meditation that God’s word advocates differ from the meditation of Hinduism, the New Age movement, and other Oriental religions?
- Psalm 36 describes the ways of wicked people. “He plots trouble while on his bed; he sets himself in a way that is not good; he does not reject evil” (v. 4) Whether or not Paul has this wicked person in mind, the difference between one who lies awake in his bed making evil plans and Christians is quite significant. While we see that the wicked focus on evil things Paul calls us to focus on what is true, worthy of respect, commendable, excellent, and praiseworthy. Scripture tells us that the heart follows the mind so those who think on these things will find themselves reflecting the character of Christ and not of the wicked.