jonah and the whale people of the promise kingdom divided lesson 12

BSF Study Questions People of the Promise: Kingdom Divided Lesson 12, Day 4: Jonah 3


God gives Jonah the same command twice to go to Nineveh and proclaim His message. Jonah obeyed.

It took Jonah 3 days to deliver God’s message to all the people: Forty more days and Nineveh will be overthrown. When Jonah’s message reached the king of Nineveh, he ordered everyone to cover themselves in sackcloth, fast, and call on God. They were to give up their evil ways and violence. God saw this and relented. He did not punish them because they repented.

BSF Study Questions People of the Promise: Kingdom Divided Lesson 12, Day 4: Jonah 3

10a) “Forty more days and Nineveh will be overthrown.” A message of destruction.

b) The Ninevites believed God. A fast was proclaimed, and all of them, from the greatest to the least, put on sackcloth. They called upon God and turned from their evil and violent ways. God does listen, and God’s word can change people and their lives.

11a) God is merciful. God listens. God relents. God warns. God gives people second chances. God is gracious, loving, and caring

b) I love second chances. I need them a lot. I love God’s mercy, too, for all my daily sins. I love God’s warning. I should listen more. These truths draw me closer to God.

12) This one is hard. Unsure. Hopefully, with my kids. I’ve learned to give God the glory for everything.

Conclusions BSF Study Questions People of the Promise: Kingdom Divided Lesson 12, Day 4: Jonah 3

So encouraging to see so many people turn to the Lord. God is gracious, loving, and caring. He loves us so much He never stops chasing us. How awesome!

End Notes BSF Study Questions People of the Promise: Kingdom Divided Lesson 12, Day 4: Jonah 3

God had work to do through Jonah, and He was determined to accomplish it, despite how much we (humans) resist it.

Oftentimes, God only gives us enough information that we can process at one time. The rest will come in time and with faith.

The word “overthrown” was used in the destruction of other cities in the Bible, too.  (Genesis 19:25Lamentations 4:6, and Amos 4:11).

Believing God is repenting. The people put on sackcloth (animal hair clothes essentially) and came to God. God, in his mercy, forgave.

Nineveh does receive judgment as we read in Nahum. It was just delayed 150 years out of God’s mercy.

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jacob travels to paddan aram for a wife

BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 12, Day 4: Matthew 12:1-21


Jesus and his disciples were walking through fields of grain. His disciples were hungry, so they began to eat the grain heads. The Pharisees claimed this was unlawful. Jesus responded that David ate consecrated bread when he was hungry and the priests desecrate the day by doing temple work. He says one greater than the temple is here, since he, the Son of Man, is Lord of the Sabbath.

The Pharisees ask Jesus if it’s lawful to heal on the Sabbath. He uses the example of if a sheep had fallen into a pit on the Sabbath, would they not rescue it? It’s lawful to do good on the Sabbath. Jesus healed a man with a shriveled hand, and the Pharisees plotted how to kill Jesus.

Jesus withdrew and healed all the sick, telling them to tell no one who he was. This fulfilled prophecy in Isaiah.

BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 12, Day 4: Matthew 12:1-21

9a) No. The law was to do no work on the Sabbath. Picking heads of grain was not only allowed according to Deuteronomy 23:25, but it most definitely is not work. The law did not say, “starve on the Sabbath.”

b) Jesus responded that David ate consecrated bread when he was hungry and the priests desecrate the day. He says one greater than the temple is here, since he, the Son of Man, is Lord of the Sabbath. Mark 2:23:27 says the Sabbath is made for man and his rest. In 1 Samuel 21:4-6, we read that the priests gave David and his men consecrated bread to eat as long as they had kept themselves from women. Jesus meant that as Lord of the Sabbath, he can do what he pleases.

10) He cared more about people than laws.

11) The Pharisees are beginning to plot against him. Jesus knows he still has work to do before he is called home to God, so he withdraws to protect himself. He’s trying to keep a low profile and not draw attention to himself, so he tells those to not tell others, so he can continue his ministry here on earth.

12) I love how in his name, there is hope. Jesus’s name is so powerful that all we need to do is hope in him.

Conclusions BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 12, Day 4: Matthew 12:1-21

Human nature is to bring those down around you who are more successful than you, more popular, and who are helping others. Here, we see Jesus begin to suffer for his goodness.

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End Notes BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 12, Day 4: Matthew 12:1-21

This passage shows us how the Bible can be misinterpreted and the consequences thereof. The Pharisees would have Jesus and his disciples starve because in their minds they were doing work on the Sabbath. This is not what the Bible says at all.

Jesus, of course, never broke a law; he did break man’s interpretation of that law, and sometimes on purpose, to make a point.

Here, human need is more important than the rules of the Sabbath. Besides, Jesus says, the priests break the laws of the Sabbath constantly by performing their rituals, which is work. Mercy is more important than sacrificing for principles (Hosea 6:6)

Jesus once again proclaims his deity with his declaration that he is Lord of the Sabbath and greater than the temple, which was everything to the Jewish people at that time. He  himself is worthy of love, admiration, honor, sacrifice, service, and worship.

Jesus Healing on the Sabbath

Jesus sets the example of us going to church on the Sabbath.

The Pharisees try to set Jesus up with a man who needs healing, knowing Jesus will have compassion on the man and heal him.

Here, the Pharisees turn from just rejecting Jesus to plotting to murder him.

Jesus withdrew to preserve God’s plan for him. He healed all who came to him in faith, and this probably took a long time.

Jesus is the chosen Servant of God.  Matthew 20:25-28Matthew 23:11Mark 9:35Mark 10:43-45. He still serves us by being our guiding light, our Savior, and loving us despite our sins every day.

Jesus doesn’t need to draw attention to himself; his deeds speak for themselves.

Jesus is gentle with those who are bruised and nourishes us who are like smoldering flames.

“The nations” refers to Jesus’s ministry to the Gentiles.

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pillars of salt

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 12, Day 4: Genesis 19:15-29

Summary of Genesis 19:15-29:

Finding no one else righteous to save, the angels told Lot to take his wife and two daughters and flee. Lot did not want to go. The angels pulled him and his family away, and God showed them mercy. They told them not to look back  or they would be swept away. Lot asked to flee to a small town instead, fearing he couldn’t make it to the mountains. The angels agreed.

When Lot was safe in this town called Zoar, God rained down burning sulphur on Sodom and Gomorrah, destroying them. However, Lot’s wife looked back and turned into a pillar of salt. Abraham saw the destruction the next morning, and God remembered Abraham and brought Lot out safely.

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 12, Day 4: Genesis 19:15-29

10) Lot hesitated so the angels had to grasp his hand and pull him away. He still did not want to flee to the mountains as instructed, instead opting for a small town to rest in. Lot was so attached to his home he didn’t want to leave his nice life for an unknown life. This fear holds many of us back.

11) God’s judgement is complete and perfect, yet merciful, still giving everyone a chance to turn to Him.

12) Personal question. My answer: Good question. Unsure. Right to be right, maybe? Old life instead of new life. Clinging to security rather than risk.

Conclusions BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 12, Day 4: Genesis 19:15-29

I love this story because it shows immediate consequences of disobeying God with Lot’s wife and oftentimes we see consequences later on down the road. Indecision and hesitancy are things we all face and have to overcome to choose God and his ways.

map of sodom and gomorrah

End Notes BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 12, Day 4: Genesis 19:15-29

We see the angels were the ones who saved Lot and his family. They have to be pulled out of Sodom and urged forward. Luckily, God does this for us as well.

God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah because there were only 4 righteous people, rather than 10. Genesis 18

Because Lot was so ingrained in the world, it’s hard to say if he was happy being saved or not.

Yet God in His righteousness would not destroy the righteous people, so He waited until they were save to rain down sulphur.

Many Bible scholars believe the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah now lie below the Dead Sea as the map shows to show God’s complete annihilation of the cities. Sodom and Gomorrah were beautiful places (remember Lot chose them for their beauty), yet the people within, all of whom could have turned to God, were the opposite of beautiful.

Lot’s Wife

Many Bible scholars believe this was a unique judgement on Lot’s wife and she did actually turn to salt. Other think she got caught up in the pyroclastic flow of the fire because she turned back. The verb in Greek connotates a looking intently, as if she paused and would not move forward.

We see Lot’s wife in  Luke 17:32  where Jesus speaks of the End Times where those who try to stay in the world will lose their life and not gain eternity.

Never look back in life; look forward to God instead. So many of us lose out on so many opportunities because we hesitate. Keep moving forward.

Abraham probably is grateful he is spared and sees God is faithful.

BSF Study Questions Genesis Lesson 12, Day 4: Genesis 13:14-18

Summary of passage:  The Lord told Abram He was giving him and his offspring all the land Abram could see forever.  God will make Abram’s offspring as numerous as the dust on the earth.  God told Abram to walk his land.  So Abram moved his tents and settled near Hebron where he built an altar to the Lord.


8a)  Lot chose the best, greenest, most fertile land for himself.

b)  Abram stayed in Canaan which had been overgrazed.

c)  Not everything is as it seems.  Matthew 6 says you need to be concentrating on storing up treasures in heaven and not treasures on earth (or having the best) for where you treasure is lies your heart.  Matthew 10 says its about following Jesus and sacrificing all for him.  Matthew 19 reminds us its about giving and not receiving to earn treasures in heaven.  Luke reminds us the earth is not our home.

9)  Abram got all the land he could see forever plus his offspring would inherit it and his offspring would be numerous as dust.  Lot’s was probably temporary and subject to takeovers.

10a)  Matthew 19:29:  “And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life.”

The Beatitudes in Matthew 5.  My favorite is Matthew 5:10:  “Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

Luke 6:22-23:  “Blessed are you when men hate you, when they exclude you and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man.  Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven.”

b)  Our greatest blessing is having our sins forgiven and promised an eternal life with God.  What we give up seems paltry next to Jesus’s sacrifice especially in the 21st century.  When I read the Bible, God’s commandments in essence are simple. He asks nothing impossible of us.  Yet we fail repeatedly.  Overcoming our sinful nature is where the battle is but with training and practice we can all become better.

God does not ask us to give up much it seems.  To just be a good person.  Do what Jesus would do.  Hard?  Yes.  Impossible?  No.

Conclusions:  For Question 8 I had to go back to Genesis 13:10.  I believe our sacrifices for Jesus are small compared to his.  We must remember this world is not our home and if we keep that in the forefront of our minds when we are tempted by our eyes then we should be alright.

Myself, though, I’m jaded anyways.  I don’t believe half of what I see anyways.  If it’s too good to be true, it probably is, as the saying goes.

Yet so many get caught in the materialistic trap.  Just look at Black Friday.  I don’t leave the house on that day.  It’s not about the latest gadget.  It’s about the fact you are able to purchase the latest gadget through God’s provision.  So many lose sight of that.

Everything is God’s.  It is just on loan to us.