BSF Study Questions People of the Promised Land 1: Lesson 10, Day 2: 1 Samuel 16:1-13 with 1 Samuel 15:34-35

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1 Samuel 16:1-13:

God speaks to Samuel and sends him off to Bethlehem, where God has chosen one of Jesse’s sons to be king. He needs Samuel to anoint the new king. Samuel is afraid Saul will get wind of this and kill him. God tells him to take a heifer as sacrifice.

Samuel obeyed. The elders were afraid upon seeing Samuel. Samuel invited Jesse and his sons to the sacrifice and told them to consecrate themselves. Looking at the heart of man, God chooses Jesse’s youngest son, David, who was attending the sheep at the time. Samuel anoints him in front of the family and then returns to Ramah.

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BSF Study Questions People of the Promised Land 1: Lesson 10, Day 2: 1 Samuel 16:1-13 with 1 Samuel 15:34-35

3) Part personal Question. My answer: God gives Samuel encouragement by having him anoint the new king, which is always exciting news! He also tells Samuel not to worry about his life being threatened by Saul as He has a plan. When God tells you to do something, He will take care of all loose ends. All you have to do is obey. Let God do the rest and don’t worry about the logistics of it all.

4) Part personal Question. My answer: God tells Samuel “Do not consider appearance or height…The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” Appearances are deceiving and we have to look at the person underneath and what heart they have, not the physical appearance.

5) Personal question. My answer: God values the heart. God knows the secrets of the heart. You can’t hide from God. I value how I treat others and who I am as a person as a whole. Man’s nature is to judge by appearances. It’s really hard for first impressions, but if you consciously focus on it, you can see the heart of people. I think most of us get this beyond first impressions.

Conclusions: BSF Study Questions People of the Promised Land 1 Lesson 10, Day 2: 1 Samuel 16:1-13 with 1 Samuel 15:34-35:

We see how we’re supposed to see people, and we see the comfort of God with Samuel. Great stuff!

End Notes BSF Study Questions People of the Promised Land 1 Lesson 10, Day 2: 1 Samuel 16:1-13 with 1 Samuel 15:34-35

1 Samuel 16:1-13:

Jesse was the grandson of Ruth and Boaz (Ruth 4:1722).

Samuel was committing treason by anointing another king. His first response is fear, as is most of ours. God overcomes all.

God ruled Israel whether they acknowledged Him or not. They faced a choice: submit to God and enjoy the benefits or resist God and suffer. The choice of Israel didn’t affect the outcome of God’s plans for them; it only made life easy or hard.

Today as we face uncertainty in politics, we don’t have to worry. God raises up leaders, probably in an unlikely place such as with David.

This is God’s king (“for me”). The people had had theirs (Saul).

Bethlehem was a small town not very far from Jerusalem. It was the home of Ruth and Boaz, from whom the family of Jesse descended. It was a hilly grain-growing region with many small grain fields carved into the hillsides. And, as we all know, Bethlehem hosted the birth of Jesus.

The elders had just experienced the death of the Amalekite king, Agag (1 Samuel 15:33), at the hands of Samuel. Thsi is why they are afraid.

The idea was not that Jesse and his sons were to just watch Samuel sacrifice this heifer. They would watch the sacrifice and then share in a large ceremonial meal, eating the meat that came from the sacrificed animal.

What’s the difference between a peace offering and an atonement offering?

  • When an animal was sacrificed to atone for sin, none of it was eaten. It was all burned before the LORD. But when an animal was sacrificed as a peace offering, a fellowship offering, or a consecration offering, then part of the animal was burnt before the LORD, and part of it was eaten in a special ceremonial meal.

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Samuel made the mistake of judging Eliab based on his appearance. This was the same mistake Israel made with Saul. He looked the part but lacked God’s heart.

Why was David not invited to the feast?

Tending the sheep was not a glamorous job and was usually a servant’s job. As the youngest, it fell to David to do so. The family must have been poor since they had no servants to do this work. David must not have been favored at all in his family. The youngest son stood to inherit no land in ancient Israel, so he was unimportant.

  1. His father didn’t even mention him by name.
  2. He wasn’t even invited to the sacrificial feast.
  3. He was only called to come because Samuel insisted on it.

I wonder if this was due in some part to jealousy like Joseph. David was obviously special in some way; family is usually not blind to this.

God often chooses unlikely people to do His work, so that all know the work is God’s work, not man’s work.

A shepherd’s work

  • As a shepherd, you had a lot of time to think and contemplate God’s greatness such as David did in (Psalm 19:1-4 and Psalm 8.
  • Sheep needed care and tending. God built in David the heart that would sing about the LORD as his shepherd (as in Psalm 23).
  • Sheep needed protecting. God protected David.
  • David was a great man and a great king over Israel because he never lost his shepherd’s heart. Psalm 78:70-72 speaks of the connection between David the king and David the shepherd: He also chose David His servant, and took him from the sheepfolds; from following the ewes that had young He brought him, to shepherd Jacob His people, and Israel His inheritance. So he shepherded them according to the integrity of his heart, and guided them by the skillfulness of his hands.

The physical description of David tells us he had a fair complexion (ruddy), and a light complexion was considered attractive in that culture. He had bright eyes, which speak of vitality and intelligence. David was also good-looking.

We don’t know how old David was at this time, but scholars estimate anywhere between 10 and 15 years old.

What do we learn from God’s choice of David as King of Israel?

God’s choice of David shows that we don’t have to quit our jobs and enter into full-time ministry to be people after God’s own heart. We don’t need to be famous or prominent to be people after God’s own heart. We don’t need to be respected or even liked by others to be people after God’s own heart. We don’t need status, influence, power, the respect or approval of men, or great responsibilities to be people after God’s own heart.

Where did David get his heart?

Where did David get this heart? From time spent with the LORD. But someone started him on that path. David says nothing of his father, but twice in the Psalms he refers to his mother as a maid servant of the LORD (Psalm 86:16 and 116:16). Probably, it was David’s godly mother who poured her heart and love and devotion of the LORD into him and gave him a foundation to build on in his own walk with the LORD. Like Timothy, God used David’s mother to pour into him a godly faith (2 Timothy 1:5).

Probably no one thought much of this anointing. They probably didn’t think it was a royal anointing. The real anointing was the Holy Spirit upon David.

Fun Fact:  1 Samuel 16:13 is the first mention of the name “David” in the book of 1 Samuel. He has been referred to prophetically before (as in 1 Samuel 13:14 and 15:28). But this is the first mention of his name, which means “Beloved” or “Loved One.”

Fun Fact: David will become one of the greatest men of the Bible, mentioned more than 1,000 times in the pages of Scripture – more than Abraham, more than Moses, more than any man in the New Testament. It’s no accident that Jesus wasn’t known as the “Son of Abraham” or the “Follower of Moses,” but as the Son of David (Matthew 9:27 and at least a dozen other places).

Bible Scholar Meyer on David: “From whatever side we view the life of David, it is remarkable. It may be that Abraham excelled him in faith, and Moses in the power of concentrated fellowship with God, and Elijah in the fiery force of his enthusiasm. But none of these was so many-sided as the richly gifted son of Jesse.”

BSF Study Questions John Lesson 10, Day 2: John 6:41-42

Summary of passage:  The Jews began to grumble, questioning how Jesus who is the son of Joseph, a common carpenter, could be the Son of God.

Questions:

3)  That Jesus’ birth was a miracle from God and that it fulfilled Old Testament prophecy.  All the miracles Jesus performed, God’s blessing when Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist.

4)  Essential.  If you don’t believe Jesus is the Son of God and that he was just a man, then you won’t have eternal life.  If Jesus Christ was not virgin born, then He was not God in the flesh and was therefore only a man possessing the same sinful nature that every person has.  God put aside His eternal glory to become man.  God revealed Himself in Jesus.  To not believe in Jesus (and thus his heavenly nature) means you don’t believe in God.  Consequences:  Damned for eternity.

Conclusions:  Shortest and easiest lesson thus far.

End Notes:  Six times in this immediate context Jesus says that he ‘came down from heaven’ (6:33, 38, 41, 50, 51, 58).  Why would anyone say this if it were not true?

The Jews are probably the Galileans here.

BSF Study Questions The Life of Moses Lesson 10, Day 2: Exodus 25:1-22

Summary of passage:  Moses is alone with God on the top of Mt. Sinai in a cloud.  God tells Moses offerings the people are to bring to Him that include gold, silver, bronze, yard, linen, wood, olive oil, spices, and more.  Then the Israelites are to build God a tabernacle where He will dwell among them.  God tells Moses to build an ark of gold for a holding for the Testimony (laws) and how to build it.  Here, He will meet with Moses and give all of His commands for the Israelites.

Questions:

3a)  The people’s hearts should “prompt them to give.”

b)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Pray for a giving heart.  Give even if your heart is not quit there yet because just the act can lead to the heart change.

c)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Well, the passages say to offer a sacrifice that costs you something.  To offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God, as a spiritual act of worship.  Give as much as you are able and beyond.  Give yourself. Basically, God wants all of us and every aspect of our lives:  money, worship, work, talents, and a living testimony to the indwelt Holy Spirit, leading a Godly-life.  I believe God wants me to fulfill the purpose He has for my life–writing something that will convert others to Him.  That is my gift beyond the others mentioned here.

4a)  As a dwelling place for Him where men could come and meet with God.

b)  From Creation, God created man as a companion to Him and as one who was meant to be with Him always. Since the Fall, sin has separated us.  So God sends His son, Jesus, Immanuel, to be with us physically.  God’s Word was given to us to be closer to us.  When we accept Jesus as your Savior, we receive the indwelling Holy Spirit, which is God within.  Then finally at Jesus’ Second Coming, Jesus will inhabit the earth with us together at last both physically and spiritually.  God will live among us and we will be together as God has meant it to be.

c)  In order to be with God, we must be cleansed of our sins for God cannot be near sin.  Hence, the atonement cover was provided as a way for His people to be near Him.  God appeared in the cloud over the atonement cover in the Most Holy place; hence, you had to be clean in order to be in the presence of God.  This allowed us to be with God as He has always meant us to.

Conclusions:  I don’t know which is harder:  one long passage of many chapters or a relatively short passage to read but with a bunch of reference passages.  Both are time consuming and challenging in their own right.  I was thinking this would be an easy day, but it wasn’t with all the look-ups.

The emphasis here is the importance of worshipping God and being near Him as we were meant to be and this passage shows how God is doing this for the Israelites in their new land.

End Notes:  Note how the Israelites 400 years ago were unskilled nomads.  After being in Egypt, they became skilled laborers, capable of crafting a beautiful tabernacle for God and an ark to hold the Testimony and for Him to dwell in.

Note the offering is not out of need nor is it us asking God for anything.  The willing heart gives–here is what God wants.  Us to freely worship and give to Him out of love and desire and because He gave everything (Jesus) to us.

The offerings listed were all of the finest and most expensive materials around–the hardest to procure and make.

The ark, or Ark of the Covenant, was described first as it was the most important offering in the tabernacle.  Scholars say it is modeled after God’s own throne.

Note the ark had wooden poles to carry it by.  The ark was too sacred to be touched by man and as Uzzah found out (2 Samuel 6:6-7) if you disobeyed this command, the penalty was death.

Note how God wants the the ark built before all the laws are even given.

The atonement cover is the lid of the ark.  Presumably, God must have made some provision for the priests to touch the lid in order to put the items inside of it.  I’m assuming we will read this later in our study.

If you picture God looking down from heaven, then the atonement cover and the passages given will make sense.  So God is looking down on the ark, which contains His laws.  The ark is then covered with sacrificial blood, atoning for and covering up man’s sins and our breaking of the law.  Hence, God could now forgive our sins and come down to be with us.

Even before the law was given, God knew we’d break it so He made appropriate provisions for us.  What a loving God!

Our mercy seat/atonement cover is now Jesus.  God is great!

Reading this passage got me confused exactly when did Moses receive the written commandments from God.  Not yet.  Exodus 24:12 has God calling Moses up to receive them but he stays for 47 days and nights so is about to receive them.  The next chapters in Exodus covers all that God told Moses (at least what Moses recorded cause I’m sure in that amount of time there would be a ton to talk about) and then he will receive the commandments to carry down off the mountain (Exodus 32:15-16).  Great website with timeline of the tablets summarized and a cool link to listen to the Ten Commandments read in Hebrew:

http://www.hebrew4christians.com/Scripture/Torah/Ten_Cmds/ten_cmds.html

Fun Fact:  The word “tabernacle” appears for the first time here and it is mentioned 139 times in the Old Testament.  It means ‘tent’ and just like a tent was moveable.  God does not permanently dwell in the tabernacle but comes when man does.

BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 10, Day 2: Matthew 9:1-8

Summary of passage:  After healing the demon-possessed man in Matthew 8, Jesus then returns to Capernaum where a paralytic was brought to him.  Jesus forgave the man’s sins and thus drew criticism from the religious leaders who were watching him.  Jesus chastised them for their unbelief and told the man to go home.  The man got up and walked and the crowd was filled with awe and praise of God.

Questions:

3a)  The faith of the men who brought the paralytic to him.

b)  By inviting them to church, by sharing the Gospel, by praying for them, by showing them kindness and a heart for Jesus, by shining your light unto them by serving them, and an insistent and incessant encouragement of friends and family to accept Christ into their hearts.

4a)  “Your sins are forgiven” (verse 2)  “The Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins” (verse 6)  The act of healing the man (verses 6-7)

b)  He got up and walked.

5)  Mark tells us many more details surrounding the act.  We learn that a huge crowd had gathered and that it was actually 4 men who brought Jesus the paralytic.  The crowd was so huge that the men had to cut a hole in the roof and lower the man down to Jesus.  We learn the exact thoughts of the teachers of the law and question Jesus’ right to forgive sins.  We learn that the man took his mat with him as well.

Luke adds that Pharisees were present as well (the leaders of the priests) and that they had come from all over to see Jesus.  The power of the Lord was present with Jesus for healing.  The man was lowered right in front of Jesus.  Upon healing we learn the paralytic himself left praising God. The people said they had never seen anything so remarkable.

Conclusions:  With faith, all things are possible.

Another example of Jesus healing.  In Isaiah 35:5-6, we learn this is what the Messiah will do.  Jesus heals not only to help people but also to fulfill prophecy and prove who he is.  Sad, isn’t it?  God must prove things to us doubting, lowly humans.

The man’s friends were merely hoping for a healing of the body.  Instead, Jesus gave them something infinitely more valuable: healing of his sins.  Jesus forgave him first to show the world that his primary job on earth is to forgive the sins of people.  Then comes healing of the body once the soul is healed.

Note how our thoughts and feelings matter to God.  Although the religious leaders spoke not a word, they silently disapproved of Jesus in their hearts.  God knows when we are just going through the motions or if we truly are committed to Him.  He knows when we sin, even if it be only in the heart.  He knows everything.  Would we want it any other way?

Fun Fact:  This is the first time the Bible records opposition to Jesus.

BSF Study Questions Genesis Lesson 10, Day 2: Skim Genesis 1-5

Summary of passages:  Please see previous posts.

Questions:

3a)  Physical Needs:  God clothed them.  Food:  now man must sow the ground for his food.  The garden had provided shelter for man.

Spiritual Needs:  A Father (God) to lead man.

Man thought he needed the knowledge of good and evil (or of God and what God knows) but in all actuality man doesn’t.

b)  3:15  “…and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head and you will strike his heel.”  Matthew and Luke recounts how God provided Mary a child through the Holy Spirit.

4)  Faith is believing in what we cannot see and being sure of it despite this.  The writer uses the example that we believe God made the universe even though no one saw this happen and believing God made all we see from what we do not see.

5a)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Abel knew God demanded the best from him so he brought the best.  Just like God demands the best from us so we must give Him our best.  Whatever that looks like for each of us.

b)  Faith.  Hebrews 11:5:  “By faith Enoch was taken from this life…”

c)  Personal Question.  My answer:  I must keep the faith.  Hebrews 11:13:  “…They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them…”  Hebrews 11:39-40:  “…yet none of them received what had been promised.  God had planned something better for us…”

Even though I cannot see it, it is there.  God’s promises for me.  In Him.  And when I feel like this life sucks I must keep moving towards Him.  Through faith.  For He has a better plan.

Conclusion:  Interesting how 2 obscure men in the Bible (Enoch and Abel) who maybe have a dozen verses between them (that’s being generous) made such an impact on others who remembered their faith.  For we are not told much about what they did.  Only Enoch walked with God and Abel brought the fat.  That’s about it.  Then they die.

This gives me hope.  Currently, I am struggling with my life and its meaning.  I feel like God has so much more for me and here I am languishing.

For who am I?  Who was Abel?  Just a guy who had faith and got killed for it.  Who was Enoch?  Just a guy who walked with God and because of it was spared a physical death. Who will remember me?  No one will read about me when I die.  Yet there is something out there for me that will make an impact.  I just feel I’m not there yet.

End Note:  Admittedly, I skimmed this Lesson (a review lesson) and was dreading it.  I skimmed today’s passages and thought Not again!  I mean, how many times do I have to read Hebrews.  Seriously?

So I thought God must have something here for me.  So I read all of Hebrews 11.  And sure enough I came up with the answer to question 5c and the conclusion.

That even though I am only one person out of 7 billion people or however many people are on the planet now I can make a difference and an impact.  If I have the faith in God and trust Him to do it.  Not me.  But Him.  Just like all the people mentioned in Hebrews 11.  All had one thing in common:  faith in God.  And all accomplished His mission in their lives.

This is my prayer for me and you:  keep the faith and accomplish His purpose in our lives.

Fun Fact:  Check out this website with cool charts on the world population throughout history:

http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/

BSF Study Questions Acts Lesson 10, Day 2: Hebrews 2:5-18

Summary of passage:  While Jesus was a little lower than angels for a time, mankind was crowned with glory and honor and everything was put under his feet, making everything subject to him.  After Jesus’ death, this changed.  Now, Jesus is crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death for everyone through the grace of God.

Jesus was made perfect through suffering, which brought man salvation.  Jesus and us (mankind) are now of the same family, called brothers.

Since Jesus was flesh and blood, his death destroyed the power of death (the Devil) and freed us from the fear of death.  Jesus had to become our brother (like us in every way) to make atonement for our sins.  Jesus suffered while tempted so he helps mankind who suffers when they are tempted.

Questions:

4a)  The end times, Jesus’ Second Coming

b)  He subjected the world to come to man and he did not subject the world to come to angels.  God gave man Earth, not the angels.  Man had dominion over everything on earth (Genesis 1:26-30)

5)  God crowned man with glory and honor and put everything under his feet.

6)  The Devil, those who were held in slavery by the fear of death, and help/save those who are being tempted.

7)  Before Jesus came, man could not get to Heaven.  After Jesus’ death, man finally was allowed to be with God in Heaven.  Victory over sin had finally been accomplished.

When Adam and Eve bit the apple, sin entered into man’s flesh.  Therefore, God sent his son in the likeness of flesh (but without sin).  When Jesus died, so did all the sin within the flesh of man.  Therefore, the Devil (and believers fear of death) was destroyed because a path to God had been made.

Romans 8:3:  “For what the law was powerless to do in that it was weakened by the sinful nature, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful man to be a sin offering.  And so he condemned sin in sinful man.”

8 )  Personal Question.  My answer:  Verse 14 because it’s the crux of why Jesus came and was crucified and it’s always a powerful reminder of God’s grace, goodness, and love for us.

Conclusions:  I went back and re-read Hebrews 1 again just I could be clear on angels before I started today.

It’s fascinating to learn the details of just how exactly Jesus’ death rid us of sin and freed us from the Devil to bring us to God. Most people just think:  Jesus died for my sins so I’m saved.  True.  But how exactly did this occur?  Now, I know.  Hebrews 2. Great stuff.

I found this website while researching Question 7.  It says it much better than I do.

http://www.christsdeath.org/terminating/termdevil.html

End Note to last week:  It looks like we’ll be studying Hebrews for a few weeks so I guess I was wrong on the filler lesson.  I guess we’ll have to wait and see how this relates to Acts.