BSF Study Questions John Lesson 29, Day 5: John 21:24-25

Summary of passage:  John says this is his testimony that he recorded and Jesus did many other things he didn’t record.

Questions:

12)  John recorded these events in Jesus’ life so people will believe Jesus is the Christ, the Sone of God, and have faith in him and his name and thus receive eternal life with the Father.

13)  Personal Question.  My answer:  My faith has grown.  My depth of love for Jesus and God have grown.  My path is clearer.  My love is stronger.

Conclusions:  Why are we being asked a question that is not in this passage at all (question 12)?  Question 13 should be in Lesson 30.  Weak ending to the study of John.

End Notes:  We have been given all we need to know.  John refers to the ongoing work or Christ throughout the centuries–so much good it could not possibly be written down.  Awesome!

John, once known as the “son of thunder” in Mark 3:17 changes as he journeys with Jesus and becomes known as the apostle of love.  Scholars speculate that as John looked back and wrote these episodes of Jesus’ life that these are the ones that convinced him Jesus was the Son of God.  As we journey with God and Jesus, we change as well.  We grow, we expand, we deepen, we love.

I hope you all have done all of this and more throughout this study.  Have a great summer break and I’ll see you all in the Fall for the Book of Romans!

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BSF Study Questions Revelation Lesson 29, Day 5: Revelation 22:6-21

Summary of passage:  Jesus is coming and John falls at the feet of the angel to worship it (he did this in Revelation 19:10). The angel told John to tell others of what he has seen and heard and to let them continue to do wrong or good as they are doing.  Jesus is coming to reward those according to what they’ve done. He’s the Alpha, Omega, First and Last, Beginning, End. Blessed are the righteous who have the tree of life. Outside the gates of the city are the dogs who are immoral and practice falsehoods. Jesus is the Root, Offspring of David, the Morning Star.  Let all come for the gift of the water of life say the Spirit and the bride. A warning to not change the prophecy in the book of Revelation. Jesus is coming soon. Grace be with God’s people.

Questions:

11)  Personal Question.  My answer:  It really doesn’t.  I plan to do what I normally do:  tell others as God leads me.

12)  Personal Question.  My answer:  I don’t know.  Too soon to tell.

Conclusions:  Filler.

End Notes:  See previous days.

Conclusions to Lesson 29:  What words of hope and encouragement.  Jesus is coming.  All should be ready.  Hold fast.  Reflective lesson leading up to Lesson 30, our last lesson where we’ll be asked what has changed within us.  This is always hard to answers for little changes we don’t see but others do.  I’d wait 6 months and then ask someone close to you if something has changed.

BSF Study Questions The Life of Moses Lesson 29, Day 5: Deuteronomy 34

Summary of passage:  Moses climbed Mount Nebo and God showed him the Promised Land.  Moses died as the Lord had said and was buried in Moab.  He was 120 years old.  The Israelites mourned his death for 30 days.  Joshua took over as leader of the people.  There has never been anyone before or since like Moses.

Questions:

10a)  God promised the Promised Land to Abraham and his descendants (Isaac, Jacob, etc).  The land was from the river of Egypt to the Euphrates River, which included the land of the Kenites, Kenizzites, Kadmonites, Hittites, Perizzites, Raphaites, Amorites, Canaanites, Girgashites, and Jebusites–the whole land of Canaan.

b)  It is a fulfillment of God’s promise, one the Israelites have waited for for centuries.  Finally, the time has come.  All of the people (including Moses) must have been overwhelmed with God’s faithfulness and their faith must have grown.  God would keep His promises of a Savior and a time when all would live forever with Him on heaven and earth.

11)  Filled Joshua with the Holy Spirit.  Thus, the Israelites listened to him and accepted him as their new leader as well.

12)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Faith.  Prayer for decisions.  Prayer for guidance in his role for my life.

Conclusions:  Dang!  I really wanted to study the Israelites in the Promised Land!  Is that a study in BSF?  The Minor Prophets perhaps?  I know BSF alternates Old Testament with New Testament, but it would be cool to do this study back-to-back because I fear when we get to the Minor Prophets in a few years I won’t remember a lot of the details of the study of Moses.  I’m an order/chronological freak so I’d love to do the bible straight from the beginning to the end.

Good lesson today.  Great conclusion to the Life of Moses as we see him ascend into God’s arms.

End Notes:  Moses does get to set foot on the Promised Land with Jesus on the Mount of Transfiguration (Matthew 17; Mark9; Luke 9).

Mount Nebo scholars believe is in the country of Jordan today.  The list of places is in a counter-clockwise circle from north to south.

Can you imagine Moses’s thoughts and feelings?  Immense job mixed with incredible sadness.

Note what Moses is called:  The servant of the Lord.  Not great leader.  Not prince of Egypt.  Not miracle-worker.  Not prophet.  Servant.  That is the greatest job God wants from all of us.

Moses died as the Lord had said.  This is usually translated “at the mouth of the Lord.”  This shows us that God keeps all of His promises–even the judgement ones.  Ancient Jewish custom says that Moses died as God took away his soul with a kiss.  Of all the ways to die, this is the best!

Note the Lord Himself buried Moses where no one can find his body.  Jude 9 tells us that the devil wanted the body of Moses.  We are not told why the devil wanted Moses’ body and scholars speculate reasons.  But we do know Moses appeared for the Transfiguration.  God was not done with him yet!

Notes Moses life divided by 40:  40 years in Egypt.  40 years in the desert leading sheep.  40 years leading people to the Promised Land.  God prepared Moses for 80 years for the last 40 years of His life.

God’s plan moves on as it always does.  But Moses is remembered for his intimacy with God, his miracles, and his leadership over Israel.  Moses was prophet, lawgiver, deliverer, and judge.  Before Jesus, he was the closest to God and in my opinion still is/was the closest human being (Jesus was both man and God) to God.

Scholars debate whether or not Deuteronomy 34 should really be the first chapter of Joshua.  First, it obviously wasn’t written by Moses (and no one knows who wrote this chapter).  Second, it seems to transition well into the first chapter of Joshua.  Furthermore, when these books were originally written one book followed another.  The modern divisions and chapter breaks are just that–modern.  This was an advent of the Middle Ages beginning in 1227 (Great note HERE) for the sole purpose of our convenience.  They are not from God.

One scholar believes the Bible was meant to read as a whole–the books without stopping.  The divisions can cause problems in interpretation as well.  (See article HERE).  Fascinating in my opinion.

Summation:  The bible is God-breathed.  The divisions are not God-breathed.

Modern Country of Jordan showing Mount Nebo:  http://www.atlastours.net/jordan/map.jpg

Mount Nebo is now a tourist destination.  Note this is where scholars think is the likely Mount Nebo from the Bible.  We are not 100% sure.  Information HERE

BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 29, Day 5: Matthew 28:16-20

Summary of passage:  The disciples go to Galilee where Jesus told them to meet him.  They worshiped him when they saw him but some doubted.  Jesus said he had been given all authority in heaven and earth and to go and baptize all in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Teach them to obey all the commands and I will be with you always to the end of time.

Questions:

11)  According to Webster’s authority means “power to influence or command thought, opinion, or behavior; persons in command; a conclusive statement; testimony; a citation used in defense or support; convincing force or weight.”

12a)  Jesus commanded his disciples to go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and teaching them to obey all the commands.  Jesus promises to be with you always to the very end of the age.

b)  The word “all” is repeated (more times in other translations than here).  All authority, all nations, all things, all days.  Jesus is speaking to every person on this planet with eternal power.  Everyone is to know him from now (1st century AD) until the present moment and the future.  The idea of authority and command is also repeated.  Jesus has the right to tell us what to do, and therefore we must obey unconditionally.  That is the scope:  it applies to all of us without question and for all time.

c)  Baptize them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and teach them to obey all he has commanded.

d)  Personal Question.  My answer:  My kids just got baptized!  It was awesome!  Talk about Jesus to others everywhere I go.

e)  As our Lord, he has the right to command us.  He tells us to do something we should do it like we expect our kids to do what we tell them to do.  And he promises to be with us as we do it.  With Jesus by our side, we cannot fail.  Nothing is impossible.  Only with him and through him will we be all we were created to be.

13)  Personal Question.  My answer:

Romans 5:10:  Jesus’ resurrection gives us a new life with God.  Live as such.

2 Corinthians 4:10-18:  Fix your eyes on eternity and not the troubles of the here and now.  We carry around Jesus’ life within us and we should overflow with gratitude. Do not focus on life’s circumstances but on the greater picture to come.  Reflect Jesus to others in your daily walk.

Galatians 2:20:  Die to self; live for Christ through faith in him.  Do God’s will and not your own.

Philippians 3:10:  We share in Christ’s sufferings.  Our sufferings grow and change us, making us more like Jesus and better able to spread the Good News to others.

Colossians 3:1-4:  Set your heart and mind on heaven and not on earthly things.  For you have died and only Christ is alive in you.  Remember things here on earth are only temporary and not important.  God’s work is what matters and nothing else.

Conclusions:  The emphasis here is on the importance of doing God’s work and following His will for your life and not yours.  Also, the importance of sharing the gospel with others.  As Jesus’ last words spoken to his disciples while in physical form here on earth, don’t you think they are the most important?  So they should be to us also.

What a comfort Jesus’ last recorded words:  “I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”  Can you imagine how your life would change if at every moment of every day you knew Jesus was walking with you and present in every situation (good and bad) in your life?

God was there.  I was just blind.

End Notes:  Jesus’ authority is what sends us, guides us, and empowers us to do his commission and nothing else.

Disciples are not converts.  They are students, scholars, and learners and they are made, not born instantly.  It is a life-long process to become a disciple of Christ for it takes that long to get to know him and be like him.

Note the absence of circumcision here.  This new covenant does not require an outward sign anymore, only inward is what matters.  Yes, baptism is an outward sign to the world, but it affects the internal more than the external.

“In” is also translated “into” so into the name of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Note also the singular “name”, meaning the Son, Father, and Holy Spirit are one, not three separate deities.

Note the teaching of “all things” and not just some things in the Bible as is popular today.

We work for and with Jesus as he is with us in every moment of every day.  He protects us, powers us, gives us peace in our daily lives.  Each footfall is next to his but more so is behind his as well as he guides us on his path to righteousness and salvation.  We cannot fail with Jesus.

Suggestion:  Read the other versions of the commission.  Mark focuses on Jesus’ chastisement of the disciples’ unbelief.  He includes what happens if people do not believe and signs of belief.  He just says to go and preach, not to make disciples.

Luke focuses as well on the disciples’ doubt.  He ate in their presence probably to help alleviate some of this.  He just mentions preaching and being sent out to the world.

John merely records Jesus interacting with Peter but here we see the commission as well:  feed and care for Jesus’ sheep and follow him.  Here, we see teach and turn to followers (disciples) of Christ.

My favorite?  Matthew’s by far.  The focus is on learning about Christ, sharing Christ, and him always being with us–in my opinion, three of the most important things about Jesus.  We need to learn about him.  We need to share him.  And he is there always.  We are never alone.

BSF Study Questions Genesis Lesson 29, Day 5: Genesis 47:28-48:22

Summary of passage:  Israel requested to be buried in the Promised Land.  When Jacob was old, Joseph and his two sons, Manasseh and Ephraim, went to visit him.  Jacob repeated God’s promise to him and he reckons Joseph’s two sons as his to share in this blessing and inheritance.  Jacob blesses the two boys, giving the firstborn blessings to the younger.

Joseph was displeased that Jacob blessed the younger son over the older son but Jacob insisted, saying he will be greater than his brother.  Thus Ephraim was put ahead of Manasseh.

Jacob says God will take him soon back to the Promised Land and he gives Joseph the land he took from the Amorites.

Questions:

10a)  Joseph obtained the rights of the firstborn when Reuben defiled his father’s marriage bed.  Then Jacob substitutes Joseph for his two sons, thus giving Joseph double the inheritance.

b)  Isaac over Ishmael, Jacob over Esau, Joseph over Reuben

11)  Personal Question.  My answer:  To be honest, none stand out.

12)  God

13)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Verse 19 where Jacob clearly says the younger will be greater than the older. Talk about setting up sibling rivalry.

14)  He asks to be buried in the Promised Land (47:30).  He repeats God’s covenant (48:4).  He says Joseph’s two sons will inherit the territory from God (48:6).  He tells Joseph that God will take him back to the Promised Land ( 48:21) and gives him some land he conquered there (48:22).

Conclusions:  Didn’t get much out of this besides the fact Jacob finally believed God, which we found out a while back.  Great example of how life isn’t fair and just because you are born first doesn’t mean you are automatically granted privileges.  You have to earn it and all the aforementioned first-borns forfeited theirs.

Thus, we can think of the firstborn more as the first position and not necessarily birth order as we’ve seen throughout Genesis.

With this adoption, there are actually 13 tribes/sons of Israel as Joseph’s inheritance is now divided into two.

I wish the Bible said why Jacob gave Joseph’s two sons the inheritance when he did this for no other.  I’m assuming because Joseph is his favorite and as the favorite you are accorded special privileges.  Not saying this is right but this is the way of the world.

We know that the right hand is the favored position as exhibited the best by Jesus sitting at the right hand of God.

The story of Joseph is a great parallel to Jesus’s and I wish BSF would have spent more time drawing that comparison out in the questions.

End Notes:  Luz is another name for Bethel.

Fun Search:  Do research on the number 12 in the Bible.  12 is special to God as seen with 12 sons and 12 disciples, etc.

Fun Fact:  This is the first mention in the Bible of God as a shepherd to His people (Genesis 48:15).

BSF Study Questions Acts Lesson 29, Day 5: 1 Peter 5

Summary of passage:  Peter advises the elders to be shepherds of God’s flock, serving as overseers, and being examples to them.  You will receive a crown of glory for their service.

Young men be submissive to elders and be humble to all.  Give God your worries.  Be self-controlled and alert for the enemy.  Resist him and stand firm in faith and after you have suffered God will restore you and make you strong, firm, and steadfast.

Questions:

14a)  A fellow elder, a witness of Christ’s sufferings, and one who will share in the glory to be revealed

b)  In these times where Christians were being persecuted, it was important to have an encourager, someone to lead by example and guide those who were new to the faith and at times afraid of proclaiming it.  These converts needed someone to show them how to lead the Christian life and to correct them and pick them up when they stumbled.  It’s the same for today.  We are all infants in our faith, growing, and we need support and guidance from elders.

c)  Crown of glory (eternal life)

15)  Respect their advice, treat them with respect, learn from them and their walk, and seek them out with questions of faith or advice on life.

16)  Resist him and stand firm in the faith, staying self-controlled and alert always.

17)  God will restore you, make you strong, firm and steadfast.

Conclusions:  More repetition.  And it all seems intuitive but I think this message is important for the younger generation to hear.  Respect your elders (the leaders) and submit to them.  They are much more knowledgeable than you are.  Today one would be hard pressed to find stellar examples of respect or submission in the secular world. Short, concise, sweet, and pithy advice.

BSF Study Questions Isaiah Lesson 29, Day 5: Isaiah 66:17-24

Summary of passage:  Those who follow false gods will all meet their end together, God says.  For because of them God is about to come and gather all the nations to see His glory.  He will set a sign (Jesus) amongst them and send out missionaries to the distant lands who have not heard of His glory to proclaim it. They will bring believers from all nations to God’s holy mountain in Jerusalem as they offer themselves to the Lord.  God will select some of them to be priests.  Their names and descendants shall endure on God’s new heavens and new earth. All mankind will bow before the Lord and they will see the dead bodies of those who rebelled (their bodies decaying, on fire, and loathsome).

Questions:

11a)  They will meet their end together and because of their actions God will come and gather all the nations and tongues

b)  God’s glory through the sign (Jesus) and through missionaries that proclaim Him.  They will bow before the Lord and see the dead bodies of all those who rebelled.

12a)  Isaiah says God’s people will gather together and experience God’s glory.  Their names and descendants shall endure.  The obstinate will die, their dead bodies strewn out for God’s people to see what happens to the rebels–burning bodies and loathsome to behold forever.

1 Corinthians says no one can fathom the great things God has prepared for those who love Him.

Mark quotes Isaiah, saying unrepentant sinners get thrown in hell where their worm does not die nor their fire quenched.

Revelation reveals the great white throne with Jesus upon it.  The dead were judged by Jesus according to what they had done.  Each person was judged from the beginning of time.  Those whose name were not found in the book of life were thrown into the lake of fire for eternity.

b)  Personal Question.  My answer:  I pray my name is in the Book of Life and I will experience God’s majesty for eternity.

Conclusions:  I’m really beginning to like the book of Revelation.  It lays it all out with no wiggle room.  Maybe that’s why some people don’t like it.  People who want to fudge God’s laws or those who don’t want to believe the bad that is to come if you don’t accept Jesus.

I like how Isaiah ends with the most important choice we all have:  to accept God or to reject Him.  Then he lays out the consequences of Man’s decision.

End Note:  Tarshish is modern-day Spain.  Libyan is the modern-day country of Libya in Africa.

Lydia is in modern-day Turkey: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Anatolia_Ancient_Regions_base.svg

Tubal is in modern-day Turkey: http://bibleatlas.org/regional/tubal.htm