Sermon Bible Study Guides

in Luke

Luke 28:9-14 - 31th December 2021

OBSERVATION
What does it say?

  1. Read Luke 18:9-14.
  2. Who is this parable addressed to? (v. 9)
  3. What is the context of this parable? (What are the themes of the surrounding verses?)
  4. Who are the people mentioned in this passage?
  5. In what ways are the Pharisee and Tax Collector similar?
    1. How are they different?
  6. What is the Tax-Collector's reward?

INTERPRETATION
What does it mean?

  1. What do you know about Pharisees?
    1. Read Matthew 23:1-7 for another analysis of Pharisees.
    2. What about Tax Collectors? (Matthew 9:9-11)
  2. What is wrong with the Pharisee's prayer?
    1. How did God view this prayer?
  3. If the Pharisee is not justified by his fasting, giving, or abstaining from certain sins, what does it say about those deeds? Should people instead not fast? Should they not give?
  4. How does the story of the Pharisee and Tax Collector connect to the second part of verse 14: "For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted."?

APPLICATION
How should it change us?

  1. The surprising part of this parable is that even though the Pharisee is the "righteous" man, it s the Tax Collector who walks away justified.
    1. What are some good works of our day (i.e. church attendance)?
    2. Why can't these things make us justified?
    3. What does this parable tell us about the good news of Jesus?
  2. In what areas of life do you "have confidence in yourself"?
    1. Is this good or bad in light of this parable?
    2. How can you grow in righteousness without becoming self-righteous?
  3. Sing Come Ye Sinners to God and to one another.
in Ruth

Ruth 4 - 24th December 2021

OBSERVATION
What does it say?

  1. Read Ruth 4.
  2. What characters are mentioned? How are they described?
  3. Who gathers at the "gate" of Bethlehem?
  4.  How does Boaz describe the role of the elders and people gathered? (v. 9-11)
  5. What is the initial response of the unnamed redeemer? (v. 4)
    1. Why does he change his mind? (v. 6)

INTERPRETATION
What does it mean?

  1. What do you think is significant about meeting at the city gate?
    1. Read Genesis 23:10-18 and Deuteronomy 25:7
    2. What do these passages tell us about the kinds of things that happen at city gates?
  2. What is so significant about what Boaz does?
    1. How does the unnamed Redeemers reluctance help us to understand the cost to Boaz?
    2. How does the generosity of Boaz here point us to Jesus' costly generosity towards sinners?
  3. In verse 14, the women remark that the Lord has not left Naomi.
    1. How have things changed since Naomi entered Bethlehem at the end of chapter 1?
    2. Why do you think the author of this book includes all these things about Naomi?
    3. What does this teach us about God and how He works in the world?
  4. If you have time, look back at Genesis 38.
    1. How does Ruth 4 connect with Genesis 38?
    2. Compare and contrast the book of Ruth with the story of Judah and Tamar. 
    3. How do you see God's faithfulness in the book of Ruth to "perpetuate the name" of Judah, despite Judah's immorality?

APPLICATION
How should it change us?

  1. What's one significant thing that you've learned or applied through studying the book of Ruth?
  2. Think again about Jesus' costly generosity towards sinners like us.
    1. We cannot repay Him for this, so how can we respond?
  3. How does the kindness of Boaz and the love of Ruth spur you on to show God's love and kindness to others?
    1. What are one or two practical ways that you can show loving-kindness to someone this week?
    2. How should this love and kindness shape our church?
Some questions are adapted from Christopher Ash, Teaching Ruth and Esther: From Text to Message

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