Archive for the ‘eve’ tag
The text for this lesson is Genesis 1:26-2:25
- God made us in His image, provided all things for our good, and made us rulers over the earth and everything in it.
- Law: God expects me to wisely rule His creation for His glory and the good of others.
- Gospel: God in Christ offers me forgiveness when I exploit, waste, or spoil His creation, and He mercifully grants all that I need in body and spirit.
- Law: I sin when I view the creation to be more important than humankind.
- Gospel: God created all things for my good and in Christ forgives me when I place the creation higher than humanity.
- Law: I sin when I worship the creation and not the Creator.
- Gospel: God in Christ forgives my sins of self-idolatry and offers me eternal life with Him.
- Of your many earthly gifts from God, which are the most important to you? How does the creation account demonstrate which of His creatures should be most important?
- “Do you think that many people today believe that God instituted marriage? In light of the creation account, should same-sex marriage ever be recognized by the Christian Church?
- The creation myths of ancient Babylon teach that humans were created to serve God’s needs. Is this view compatible with Genesis? Why did God create humankind?
- One aspect of the image of God is righteousness, that is, being without sin. Just as God is without sin, so humankind was created sinless and righteous. When Adam and
Eve sinned, did they completely lose the righteousness that they originally had from being created in the image of God? Instead of original righteousness, what is each of us born with? How does God restore us to righteousness and His image? See Colossians 1:15–20 and 1 Corinthians 1:30.
- A second aspect of the image of God is dominion, that is, control and rule or lordship. Read Genesis 1:26 carefully. What is the connection between humankind being created in God’s image and God’s command for us to rule over the world? How does a good ruler or lord treat his subjects? How, then, should people rule over the world? How has the fall affected our understanding of dominion? How does our Lord Jesus Christ rule us? See Matthew 20:25–28.
- A third aspect of the image of God is that we have the breath of life from God. We confess in the Nicene Creed that the Holy Spirit is “the Lord and giver of life.” Read Genesis 2:7. How does the Spirit give us life? What does the word inspiration mean in Christian theology? Read John 6:63. Whose words are inspired? Read John 20:19–23. How does God breathe new life into people who are dead in sin?
- God created the first man and woman in His image to share in a perfect relationship of love. Love is expressed in community. An aspect of the image of God is community. Read Genesis 2:18. Why was it not good for Adam to be alone? Why did he need a suitable helper? How does God dispel loneliness and provide community through the institution of marriage? Read Ephesians 5:22–33. How does Christian marriage provide a picture of Christ’s love for His Church and of the Church’s love for Christ?
- As Christians, we believe that Genesis 1–2 describes God’s intentional and loving creation of humankind. How does what we believe about creation affect our view of the dignity of every living person? How does what we believe about Jesus’ once-for-all sacrifice affect our view of each other? See John 3:16.
- Read Genesis 2:16–17. By giving this command, God was telling Adam that he was to trust and believe in Him only. What kinds of created things or people do we make into gods? Ultimately, what becomes of us if we create our own gods? See Isaiah 44:9–10.
- Read Genesis 2:15. Was the need to work part of God’s perfect creation or the result of sin? Why is work sometimes such a difficult and joyless thing? Why would a life of idleness not be God-pleasing? How does our work serve God?
- Read Genesis 1:28. When God says, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth,” what is He telling Adam and Eve to do? Read Psalm 127:3–5. What does God’s Word tell us about children? How do these verses contrast with many people’s views of marriage and childbearing today?
The text for this lesson is Genesis 1:1-2:3
- God made the world in six days by the power of His Word. All of creation is God’s blessing to us.
- Law: Do not worry about anything. Trust the Lord for all things.
- Gospel: God richly and daily provides me with all things for this body and life, including the gift of His Son, who died for all my sins.
- Law: God requires that I believe that He is the only true God, the Creator and Sustainer of the world.
- Gospel: God in Christ gives me faith to believe that He created the earth and heavens and sustains them by His wisdom and power.
- What is a “genesis”? Why is important for us to study Genesis 1–3 carefully?
- “I just can’t believe that God could create the world in six twenty-four-hour days! How could that be possible? The Genesis story simply couldn’t be true.” How would you respond to a friend who said that?
- Compare Genesis 1:1 and John 1:1–4. Was “the Word” in existence at the time of creation? Who is “the Word” that John refers to (see John 1:14)? In Genesis 1:3, we learn that God said, “Let there be light,” and there was. Who spoke those words? Read John 8:12. What kind of light was given through Him (see John 1:4)?
- In Genesis 2:2, we learn that God rested from His work, setting apart the seventh day of the week as a Sabbath, a day of rest. Does this mean that God’s participation in the goings-on of creation ceased (see Genesis 2:3)? Read John 5:17–18. In what ways does God continue to work in the creation to this very day? How could Jesus violate the Sabbath requirements without breaking God’s Law?
- In Genesis 1:29–30, God gives seed-bearing plants and fruit to humans to eat, and He gives every green plant to the animals to eat. What clearly was not to be eaten? Why not? When did God give permission for humankind to change their diet? See Genesis 9:3.
- Moses tells us five times that what God made was “good.” In Genesis 1:31, the whole creation is described as “very good.” What does “very good” mean? What must life in the unspoiled creation have been like? Read Revelation 21:1–5. When will Christians be restored to the “very good” life?
- When we say that someone is “creative,” what do we usually mean? Is creativity necessarily a good thing? Think about how you use the creativity God has given you. Do you always use it in a God-pleasing way?
- The Hebrew word used in Genesis for “create” is used only when referring to God. It means “to make out of nothing.” What is the difference between humankind’s creativity and God’s? Read Romans 4:17. How does God express His creativity to us?
- Luther says in the Small Catechism that God “richly and daily provides me with all that I need to support this body and life.” How, then, do we account for the times in our lives when it doesn’t feel like we have everything that we need? Read Matthew 6:8.
- The doctrine of vocation teaches us that God provides for us through various callings, or work, of our neighbors, both those known and unknown by us. How does God work through your vocation (work) to provide for your neighbor’s needs?
The text for this lesson is Luke 4:1-13.
- Like us, Jesus was tempted by Satan to sin. Yet for us, He overcame all temptation because we cannot.
- Law: God wants me to trust Him and not test His love and care for me.
- Gospel: In spite of my sinful ways that place me in harm, God watches over and protects me with His holy angels.
1. Hebrews 4:15 says that Jesus “in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.” Though it is possible for us to face a temptation without sinning, to what does the experience of temptation usually lead?
2. We learn in Jesus’ Baptism in Luke 3:21–23 that He is the Son of God. This is reiterated in His genealogy, but Luke 3:38 also calls Him “the son of Adam.” As we reflect on the fact that Jesus was both true God and true Man, what are we tempted to conclude about His temptation by Satan?
3. In this lesson, we see Jesus resist Satan by relying on the Word of God alone. He used no miracles, divine power, or deep theological insights. He overcame the devil by quoting the Book of Deuteronomy three times. What might this tempt us to identify as the main point of the story?
4. According to Matthew 3:13–15, why did Jesus come to be baptized by John? What does Jesus’ obedience under temptation do for us? What does Jesus’ obedience even to death on the cross do for us?
5. We noted above some of the Old Testament themes that appear in the account of Jesus’ temptation. In Genesis 2:16–17, God gave Adam permission to eat from any tree in the Garden of Eden except for the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. According to Genesis 3:1–3, what did Satan tempt Eve to do? In what way did she fail to respond properly? According to Exodus 17:1–7, how did the children of Israel tempt or test God in the wilderness? What is the significance of the location Massah and Meribah?
6. With regard to the first temptation, we know Jesus had received confirmation of His Sonship at His Baptism. According to Luke 4:3, how does Satan challenge that Sonship? Jesus’ response in Luke 4:4 is a quotation from Deuteronomy 8:1–3. Why could Jesus confidently rely on His Father to provide for Him?
7. With regard to the second temptation, Isaiah 52–53 tells us that Jesus will be the servant of the Lord who will suffer for the people but then be exalted. In Luke 4:5–7, what does Satan tempt Jesus to do? According to Luke 22:39–44, what struggle did Jesus continue to face? Jesus responds to Satan by quoting Deuteronomy 6:13. According to Deuteronomy 6:10–15, what provides the basis for serving the Lord God only?
8. Finally, we see the third temptation. “The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose,” wrote Shakespeare in The Merchant of Venice (Act 1, scene 3). In Luke 4:9–11, Satan rips Scripture verses out of context and makes himself sound very pious. After forty days of suffering in the wilderness, Jesus could have been aching for an external sign that His Father had not abandoned Him. Yet Jesus knew the background of Deuteronomy 6:16. In this verse, what is the significance of Massah for Jesus’ temptation? (Refer back to question 5.) According to Luke 4:13, what did Satan do after being defeated this time?
9. In Satan’s first temptation of Jesus, he tempts Him to despair of God’s mercy. What is despair, why is it dangerous, and how can it be overcome?
10. In the second temptation, Satan tempts Jesus toward an apparent good. Jesus came into the world to be a ruler, so why not just start now by worshiping the devil? What are some seemingly good things that tempt us? How does Jesus tell good from evil?
11. In the third temptation, Satan tempts Jesus by misusing God’s Word. He quotes out of context. This happens a great deal today. Consider the following paraphrases of Scripture, and provide examples of contemporary misuses of them: “Forgive others”; “Do not judge”; “God is love.” How does Jesus resist this temptation?
12. How does what happens to Jesus after His Baptism relate to our Christian life? According to 1 Peter 5:8–9, what expectation should a new Christian have after Baptism? Whom is Satan most interested in tempting? What is Satan’s ultimate goal? What is our best defense against Satan?