• November 28, 2017 /  Uncategorized

    Name means “Who is like Yahweh?”  He gets mentioned in Jeremiah 26:18, which God uses to protect Jeremiah.  He gets quoted in Matthew 2:6 regarding the birth of Christ.

    Main Idea(s)

    The sins of the two kingdoms are great, and there will be judgment, even exile on each.  The Lord will bring repentance and redemption to his people, but has a greater plan to bring it to all nations on Earth.

    Target: Israel and Judah

    Time Period

    • Contemporary of Hosea, Isaiah and Amos, and maybe Joel.
    • The book takes place in the reigns of Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah.

    Famous verses and fragments

    2:11, 2:12-13, 4:1-5, 5:2, 6:6-8

    Notes

    Chapters 1-3   Sins and Announced Judgment

    • Chapter 1 – Which nations does this prophecy target?
      • Does this prophecy start slowly or quickly?
      • What are the sins? Where are they manifest?
      • What is God going to do as judgments?
      • What does Micah think of this? V 8
      • Is repentance called for yet? What of v 9?
      • Vv 10-16 – note alliteration
    • Chapter 2 – What are the sins?
      • What is God going to do as judgments?
      • What do vv 6-11 tell us about the lives of people in Israel/Judah?
      • Does the Lord offer restoration?
      • What is implied in verse 13?
    • Chapter 3 – What groups of people is God particularly condemning in this chapter?
      • What are their sins?
      • What does he compare these groups to?
      • What is their religion like?

    Chapters 4-5     The Kingdom of God over all Nations and his Messiah

    • Chapter 4 – What part of Scripture does the beginning of this Chapter remind you of?
      • What is promised here?
      • How does it compare with the current situation? Future situation? Vv 9-10
      • Why should it give Judah confidence?
    • Chapter 5 – what do vv 2-4 tell us about the Messiah?
      • What do vv 5-6 tell about how the victory over Assyria would be?
      • What will God do with his people as a result? Vv 7-9
      • What will God do with his people as a result? Vv 10-15
      • What does this point to in God’s future plans?

    Chapters 6-7   A Call to Repentance

    • Chapter 6 – what is the form of the Lord’s complaint? Vv 1-5
      • What does He appeal to?
      • What should the response of the people be? vv 6-8
      • What was their injustice against God? How did He summarize it?
      • What was the punishment?
    • Chapter 7 – What is Micah’s lament at the present situation?
      • What is his consolation? Vv 8-10
      • For the end of the chapter, what will God do with Judah?
      • What will the effect on the nations be?
      • How does this show us God’s covenant faithfulness to his people?
  • November 24, 2017 /  Uncategorized

    Name means Dove.   Aside from what we know about him from 2Kings and the Gospels, this book is all we know about him.

    Main Idea(s)

    Jonah is a book about how gentle but firm God can be.  It takes place in Bible history at just the point where Assyria has become a significant threat to the Northern Kingdom.  Jonah would rather see his enemies destroyed than converted; God would rather see them converted than destroyed. And rather than destroy Jonah, he provides experiences to teach him to be like God at heart, a lesson that Jonah does not seem to learn.

    Target: Mostly Assyria, but it reflects on Israel, the Northern Kingdom

    Time Period

    • Contemporary of Isaiah, Micah, Hosea and Amos.
    • The book takes place during the reign of Jeroboam II.

    Famous verses and fragments: None

    Questions

    1. How do we know approximately when the Book of Jonah was written?
    2. How do we know that it is not a parable?
    3. Why could you call Jonah a book of questions?
    4. What did the following parties care about? Mariners, Ninevites, Jonah, God.
    5. Why does Jonah not want to preach at Nineveh?
    6. Can you think of anyone else who fell asleep in a boat in a storm?
    7. Why are the mariners exceedingly afraid in 1:10?
    8. Did the mariners sin in throwing Jonah overboard? In what ways did the mariners’ knowledge of God grow?
    9. Of what psalms does Chapter 2 remind you? What themes get developed?  Does Jonah repent?
    10. Should the miraculous nature of Jonah surviving in the big fish give us any problems?
    11. What did the Ninevites do to show earnestness in repentance?
    12. How well do the Ninevites and their King compare to the Northern Kingdom?
    13. Why does Jonah want to die?
    14. Does God answer Jonah directly in chapter 4?
    15. How do the mariners and the Ninevites compare to Jonah in righteousness?
    16. Did Jonah understand God well?
    17. What is God’s lesson to Jonah? (and us)
  • November 22, 2017 /  Uncategorized

    =================================

    Name means Servant of Yahweh.  We don’t know anything about him.

    Main Idea(s)

    Edom is convinced that they will never face judgment for their sins against Judah, particularly those that happened when Jerusalem was destroyed by Babylon.  The Lord says their destruction will be total, and that the land of Edom will be the Lord’s.

    Target: Mostly about Edom, but it reflects on redemption for Judah

    Time Period

    • Contemporary of Jeremiah, Ezekiel and Daniel.
    • The book takes place after the Destruction of Jerusalem.

    Famous verses and fragment: 5

    Notes

    Verses 1-4 – Introduction

    • Can you think of other books that talk about Judgment on Edom?
    • Vv 3-4 What reasons did Edom have for confidence?

    Verses 5-9 – Thoroughness of the Judgment

    • What would happen at their judgment? How total would it be?  What of their defenses would fail?
    • How do you destroy an incredibly strong defense? Betrayal
    • Babylon, Arabs, Nabataeans, Selucids, Jews, Romans

    Verses 10-14 – Reasons for the Judgment

    • Brotherhood with Israel/Jacob – even after so many generations? What of earlier history?
    • Vv 12-14 Eight “you should not have” – Why this literary device?

    Verses 15-16 – The Day of the Lord

    • What does “the Day of the Lord” mean here?

    Verses 17-21 – Salvation for Israel

    • Is there any hope for Edom?
    • What hope is there for Israel/Judah?
    • Calvin: “Now it is certain that this prophecy has never been completed…” What then?
    • Why does the book end with “And the Kingdom shall be the Lord’s?”
    • Spiritually, what does this book teach Christians today?
  • November 15, 2017 /  Uncategorized

    Amos

    Name means Burden or Burden-bearer.  Amos tended sheep and sycamore figs – likely a poor man.

    Main Idea(s)

    Israel is a nation filled with wealthy people who do what they want and don’t want to hear the Word of God.  God will be a roaring lion to them, if they might be properly frightened into returning, but they will not listen.

    Target: Mostly about Israel, but Amos was from Judah

    Time Period

    • Contemporary of Hosea, Isaiah and Micah, and maybe Joel.
    • The book takes place in the reigns of Jeroboam II and Uzziah.

    Famous verses and fragments

    3:3, 3:6-7, 5:18-20, 5:24, 8:11-12

    Notes

    Chapters 1-2   Total Judgment on the Near East

    1. Syria – attacking Israel , the judgment is exile
    2. Philistia – 2Chr 21:16, the judgment is destruction
    3. Tyre – possibly same incident; Hiram – destruction
    4. Edom – Hatred of Israel; Envy; Wrath – destruction
    5. Ammon – brutal attacks on Israel – exile
    6. Moab – revenge for 2Ki 3:27 against Edom – destruction
    7. Judah – rejected the Law of the Lord – exile
    8. Israel –
      • slavery, cruelty, adultery, idolatry
      • appeals to past care of Israel
      • Silencing the prophets
      • Leading to destruction and exile

    Themes

    • For Three transgressions and Four, I will not turn away its punishment
    • Sennacherib and Nebuchadnezzar level the Near East
    • Judges the others, then comes in for the target, Israel
    • Not exhaustive but representative sins

     

    Chapters 3-6     Calls for Repentance

    1. 3-4 The Case and the Warning Shots
      1. What do you think about verse 3:2?
      2. What is the point of the questions in 3:3-6?
      3. How can 3:7 be abused?
      4. Why go proclaim in foreign lands? 3:9
      5. How bad will the destruction be?
      6. 4:1-5 – What’s the attitude of the well-off in Israel?
      7. Fivefold “yet you have not returned to me.”
      8. What do verses 4:12-13 tell us about God?
    2. 5:1-17 The Lament
      1. V 1-3, how bad will it be?
      2. What is he telling them to avoid in v 4-7?
      3. 5:8-9 Why does God appeal to his roles as Creator and Sustainer to support his judgment?
      4. V 10-15, what sins are rebuked, and what does God ask them to do?
    3. 5:16-6:14 You don’t really want the Day of the Lord…
      1. What do verses 5:16-20 tell you about the Day of the Lord?
      2. V 21-27 What does God think of their worship?
      3. 6:1-8 What does God think of their personal peace and affluence?
      4. What does 6:9-10 mean?
      5. 6:11-14 What will the judgment be?

    Chapters 7-9    Five Visions

    1. Locusts, Fire, and Plumb Line – what is the point of these three visions as a group?
    2. Interaction with Amaziah – what is Amaziah’s point? Amos’ response?
    3. Basket of Summer Fruit – must be used immediately – God will not delay
      1. What problems does God have with their religiosity? What will He do?
      2. What is a famine of hearing the words of the Lord? 8:11-12
    4. The Lord at the Altar
      1. 9:1-4 What does He threaten?
      2. V 5-6 On what basis, or because He is what?
      3. V 7-10 Why does God recall what he did for Israel?

    Restoration – 9:11-15

    1. Who will God restore?
    2. Why?
    3. Will the blessing be great or small?
    4. What great promises are given?
  • November 6, 2017 /  Uncategorized

    Joel

    Name means The Lord is God

    Main Idea(s)

    God uses a disaster of locusts and perhaps a few other things to get the attention of Judah over her sins.  He call them to repent.  When they repent, he blesses them.  There is a greater blessing, and greater judgment coming.

    Day of the Lord – 1:15, 2:1, 2:11, 2:31, 3:14

    Target: Judah

    Time Period

    • We don’t know
    • Possibly the same time as Amos, Hosea, Isaiah and Micah, which would place it in the reign of Jeroboam II
    • Between books of Hosea and Amos, which are the same time period – see Amos 4:6-10

    Famous verses and fragments

    2:13, 2:25, 2:28-32, 3:14

    Notes

    Chapters 1-2:11 The Total Disaster of the Day of the Lord

    • What nation is this about?
    • Is it a judgment for sin?
    • V 8 – Lament like a virgin girded with sackcloth for the husband of her youth
    • V 9 – Bad enough that the House of the Lord is not offering
    • Priests, elders – Corporate repentance, fast, solemn assembly because of the Day of the Lord
    • No crops, animals dying
    • Locusts or men in Chapter 2?

    Chapter 2:12-17 A Call to Repentance

    • Intensity
    • Corporate and individual repentance
    • Everyone must come, even those recently married
    • V 17 – Priests appeal to the Lord for His honor

    Chapter 2:18-27 Mercy Given

    • Blessings of Food, Water, for man and beast
    • V 20 – Assyrians?
    • Restoring the losses from the locusts
    • So that we might know God

    Chapters 2:28-3:21 The Greater Day of the Lord Revealed – the Judgment of the Nations

    • Quoted in NT
      • Ac 2:16-21
      • Spirit on all flesh
      • V 30-31 – God changes the order of things
      • Christ will come to save Jew and Gentile alike
    • 3:1 – Bring the exiles of Judah and Jerusalem – the people of God
    • 3:2 – Valley of Blessing (2Chr 20) or Judgment?
    • 3:3-13 He judges the sins of the nations
      • 3-6 Note the sins
      • 7-8 Judgment
      • 9-13 They try to fight God
    • 3:14 – God is deciding about the nations – the Day of the Lord
    • 3:15 – God is changing things: there will be a final judgment
    • 3:16 – God saves his own people, but not the heathen. The land will be holy, and they will know that the Lord is God.
    • V 21 – Salvation “And I have declared their blood innocent, That I did not declare innocent, And Jehovah is dwelling in Zion!”