Sermon Bible Study Guides

Psalm 123 - 23rd July 2021

OBSERVATION
What does it say?

  1. Read Psalm 123
  2. What moods or emotions does the psalmist express?
  3. Do you see any similarities between this Psalm and the previous Psalms of Ascent? (Psalm 120, 121, 122)
  4. Which words are repeated?
  5. What connecting words do you see?  (therefore, yet, however, likewise, so then, because, for, etc.)

INTERPRETATION
What does it mean?

  1. What do you think it means to "lift up your eyes" to the Lord?
    1. How do the illustrations of a servant and maidservant help our understanding?
  2. What do the words "us" and "we" show us about this Psalm?
  3. Why do the people ask for mercy from the Lord?
    1. Why might the people need relief from "those who are at ease" or from "the proud"? 
  4. Is there anything in this passage that points to or foreshadows truths of the gospel? (Remember there might be many answers to this question: does it mirror Jesus in any way? Anything pointing to sin, judgment, salvation, God's love, etc.?)

APPLICATION
How should it change us?

  1. During the journey to Jerusalem, the people sang this song for more than just a safe journey.
    1. How can Christians today learn from this prayer?
    2. Are there things that you are lamenting? What about others in the church?
    3. What does it look like to "look to the Lord" for these things?
  2. The culture we live in (and even others in the church) might be proud or living at ease.
    1. How can we follow Jesus faithfully among these things?
    2. How can we encourage, exhort, or correct other Christians who are living pridefully or living at ease?

Psalm 122 - 16th July 2021

OBSERVATION
What does it say?

  1. Read Psalm 122
  2. What feeling(s) does the psalmist express?
  3. Do you see any similarities between this Psalm and the previous Psalms of Ascent? (Psalm 120, 121)
  4. Does the psalmist give any commands?
  5. Do you see any repeated words or poetic devices?

INTERPRETATION
What does it mean?

  1. Why do you think the psalmist was glad about going to the house of the Lord?
  2. What is the "house of the Lord"? 
  3. In verses 3-5, the Psalmist is "looking around" Jerusalem.
    1. What do you think it means that Jerusalem is "bound firmly together"?
    2. What do you think it means that "thrones of judgment were set" in Jerusalem?
  4. How does the church carry out the tasks of the temple? (1 Peter 2:4-5; Ephesians 2:19-22)
  5. Is there anything in this passage that points to or foreshadows truths of the gospel? (Remember there might be many answers to this question: does it mirror Jesus in any way? Anything pointing to sin, judgment, salvation, God's love, etc.?)
    1. How many connections can you make? 

APPLICATION
How should it change us?

  1. The psalmist was glad and excited to gather with "the tribes of the Lord".
    1. How does your family usually prepare for gathering and worshiping with God's people (the church)?
    2. How can we better prepare our hearts in our anticipation and joy in gathering?
    3. What can we do throughout the week to better prepare for the corporate gathering of our church?
  2. How can we use this Psalm to pray for our church and for other churches?

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