Sunday, December 6th, 2015
Advent // Week 2
Advent is all about Jesus. He came 2,000 years ago to seek and save the lost. He has called the church into that same mission.
As we focus in during this season on His first coming, may we grow in our expectancy of His second coming.
As you begin your study each week, pray that God will speak to you through His Word. Come each week prepared for discussion. Be willing to participate and ask questions. As much as possible, stick to the topic at hand. Be sensitive to the other members in your group and listen attentively.
These verses speak of a man in a literal wilderness. For us today, the wilderness can be seen in at least 2 ways…my heart and the world. Have you experienced a “wilderness”? What was God’s message to you in that place? What did your life communicate to the world in that place?
- What does the Lord say to the wilderness of our hearts? What is He saying to you now? Do you need to hear Him say “come, know me, and rest in who I am; I love you and I am here”?
What do we say to the wilderness of those living in the world apart from a relationship with Christ? Do we, as the church, need to recommit to turn to the world and say “come to Him, know Him, and rest in who He is; He loves you and is here for you”?
John the Baptist was the voice of one preparing the way. What an incredible strategy God planned at this time to prepare the way for Jesus. If you were marketing something today you would be crazy to think that one man, one channel, and one area would have any impact, but God did exactly that. Do you struggle believing God and the plan He has for you? What does hope look like when the plan and results aren’t clear?Be encouraged!The goal of the season of Advent as seen in this text is to hear the voice of God calling you again. He is calling you to love Him, be in awe of Him, and to recommit your life to the gospel of Jesus in the wilderness of the world. He is calling us to rest in Him and from that place then serve Him in humble obedience.
- Think of yourself as a Jew in the time of Jesus, someone who knew the Hebrew Scriptures about the times Israel was alone and abandoned, whether in slavery in Egypt or in exile in Babylon. Read Luke 3:1-2. Think of yourself as that early century Jew who would have read this book by Luke. What was Luke’s purpose for listing those names of gentile and corrupt Jewish leaders? What reality was Luke speaking into? How would it have made you feel?
- Discuss the emptiness in your heart that Christ filled. Discuss ways you had longing before you knew Christ. How did you chase after satisfaction? Why didn’t it satisfy? Discuss how consumed your life was with this pursuit of satisfaction.
John the Baptist doesn’t mince words and he’s not subtle. Has there been a person in your life who has yelled God-inspired needed truth into your circumstance? Was there a situation in your life that shook you awake? How did you respond? Share with your group.