13 November 2016

Theme: Lighthouse faith

Readings: Psalm 112:1-9, 1 Cor. 2:1-12, Matth. 5:13-20

Psalm 112

This Psalm is known as a Wisdom Psalm. What are the “commands” referred to in vs.1?

When the Psalmist calls the reader to “fear” the Lord – what does that mean?

It is interesting to note the proof of blessings in the life of the righteous person – can you spot the blessings in vs. 2-3?

What does the blessing in vs.4 imply?

Take special note of the examples of “inner” blessings for the righteous in vs.7-8.

Do you think that the theme of this Psalm, i.e. blessings for the righteous, is a realistic one to believe in, in our modern world?

By this is it truthful to say that God pours out blessings on the righteous when the reality is that there are so many very faithful, loving Christian people, who struggle daily to put food on the table to survive?

1 Cor. 2

In the recent aftermath of the USA elections, Brexit, and the daily realities of our struggling economy vs. 6 might take on poignant meaning! What does it mean to say that God expects us to speak of a wisdom that is not of this age?

What is the secret wisdom spoken of in vs. 7 and 9?

Does looking at wisdom (which is the Holy Spirit) in this way, help you better understand the role of the Holy Spirit at work in your life?

Where do you need the Holy Spirit’s guidance this coming week?

Matth. 5

This reading is part of the Sermon on the Mountain (Ch’s 5-7) which outlines Jesus’ theology. The salt and light themes are wonderful (vs.13, 14) and explain something of the radical nature of Jesus teaching – for example:

1. Salt has no purpose simply being salt – it only has value, purpose and meaning when it is used! Do you agree?

2. Light has value and makes sense only when it “works” pushing back darkness, light for light’s sake is meaningless. Do you agree?

Look at vs. 16 – “What is the purpose of light” and is there a relationship between “Light” and “works”?

What “Law” is Jesus referring to vs. 17,18?

How can we let the Law guide us (doesn’t the Law turn us into judgemental Christians?), and still believe we are living under Grace?

Which one of the 10 Commandments is the most difficult one for you to observe? Why?