Obey, not ignore Jesus' teachings - Matthew 7:24-27
(A2) Open the session with prayer
(A3) Because of the subject matter this is a long session and may take 2 weeks to cover. That's OK, get the most out of it instead of rushing through it.
(A4) How did you do on last session's B11 application?
(A4) Review of the "Quiet Time" message by Jerry Bridges - Messages
(1) What was the key thought you wrote down from listening to this message?
(2) Martha's problem was not worldliness but busyness. Not overt sin but distraction .. she had her priorities confused. Thought serving the Lord is more important than fellowship with him. Luke 10:38-42
(6) How to have a conversation with God: Christ speaks to us through the word and we reply in prayer.
(10) What is the best way to engage in a conversation with God? It could be reading, or study (writing notes down) or reviewing scriptures. In all three make sure I am giving God an opportunity to speak to me and then I respond back in prayer.
(11) Bible has also given us some prayers that we can pray Phil 1.9-11, Col 1.9-11, Eph 1.16-20 and 3.14-21.
(12) Which ones of the above quotes did you like the most?
(13) The quality and frequency of our Quiet Times will more than anything determine whether we are building our house on the rock or the sand. Agree or disagree?
(A6) Were you able to listen to Matthew chapters 1 -7? Why is it important to listen to the Bible?
(A7) Click here to view the applications and split into groups of 2 and work on saying word perfect from memory Applications 1-3.
(1) Once you're back in the big group have everyone say the applications by memory.
(2) Why are we memorizing these applications?
(A8) Who did you teach last week?
(B1) Jesus 3rd Requirement - Obey, not ignore Jesus' teachings
(B2) This session covers Jesus' 3rd requirement for how to enter heaven.
(B3) Matthew 7:24-27 "Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. (25) Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock. (26) But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. (27) When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash."
(1) In v24 if we don't want our house to collapse what must we do to build it on the solid rock?
(2) From CSB Study Bible "The adjectives wise and foolish describe a person’s spiritual and moral state, not his intellect ... the storm that destroys the house on the sand is a picture of divine judgment. Hence, the person who hears and acts on Jesus’s teaching is prepared for judgment. The one who hears but doesn’t act on Jesus’s words will be destroyed in the storm of judgment." What does the storm represent?
(3) Is Jesus telling us how to avoid having Jesus tell us Matthew 7:23? "I never knew you. Get away from me, you who break God’s laws."
(4) From The Gospel of Matthew by R. T. France pg 296 "... has left Jesus' hearers with a simple but demanding choice: to hear and ignore, or to hear and put into practice. It is a make-or-break choice with eternal consequences. And as we noted in v21, it is Jesus himself who is the key to this choice; it is his words (and not, as one might have expected, God's words) which must be done. Indeed, to do Jesus' words here seems to e the equivalent of "doing the will of my Father in heaven" in v21. To ignore his words, therefore, will result in total spiritual disaster." How we respond to Jesus sermon has what type of consequences? If we ignore his words what will happen to us?
(B4) What we are to live on - Matthew 4:4 "But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say, ‘People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’"
(1) From Believer's Bible Commentary "Getting bread is not the most important thing in life. Obedience to every word of God is."
(2) How can we live on every word from the Bible?
(3) Will our lives be better if we get our nourishment & guidance more and more from God's word and not from the things of this world?
(B5) Who are Jesus' true disciples? - John 8:31-32, 34, 36, 51 "Jesus said to the people who believed in him, “You are truly my disciples if you remain faithful to my teachings. (32) And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free. ... (34) I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave of sin. ... (36) So if the Son sets you free, you are truly free. ... (51) I tell you the truth, ANYONE who obeys my teaching will never die!"
(1) In v31, in addition to believing what is Jesus' other requirement to be his true disciple?
(2) In v31 The greek word that is translated "remain faithful" in the NLT, is translated "abide in my word" ESV, NKJV "continue in my word" NASB, CSB, and "hold to my teaching" NIV. It is the the same greek word translated “remain” in John 15:4–7, 9–10
(3) In v32 what does Jesus promise his true disciples?
(4) In v34 what will we be set free from?
(5) In v36 who will set us free from being a slave to sin?
(6) In v51 if we don't want to die spiritually what must we do?
(7) Note: Anyone in v51 means ANYONE!
(8) The MacArthur Bible Commentary "Perseverance in obedience to Scripture is the fruit or evidence of genuine faith. The word “abide” means to habitually abide in Jesus’ words. A genuine believer holds fast, obeys, and practices Jesus’ teaching. ... Real disciples are both learners (the basic meaning of the word) and faithful followers. ... (34) The idea of “commits sin” means to practice sin habitually"
(9) The Moody Bible Commentary: "being true disciples requires Christians to continue or “abide” in Christ’s teachings. As believers obey (v. 32), they will know the truth experientially, and this truth will make them free. ... This liberation is not an intellectual accomplishment but a God-empowered freedom from sin, realized through an ongoing faith relationship with Jesus (v. 36) ... Since Jesus is the Son of God, He can make one free (v. 36) in its true spiritual sense (free indeed), both from sin’s penalty (justification) and sin’s power (sanctification)."
(10) The ESV Study Bible: "(34) A slave to sin means unable to escape from sinful patterns of conduct without the help of Jesus to set a person free. ... (36) Sets you free from both the guilt and the life-controlling power of sin". What meant the most to you out of these 3 study Bible notes?
(B6) Proof of salvation - three quotes from John MacArthur. "(1) The proof of conversion is not a past event, or a past prayer, or past experience. It’s a present righteousness. Ah, it’s not perfection, but it’s direction. (2) It’s what you do with the Jesus’ words that gives evidence of your spiritual condition. ... What is the evidence of true conversion? What is the evidence of true repentance? It is a life of obedience, submission to the lordship of Christ. It’s not a profession. It’s not empty words. It’s obedience. ... (3) If you love the truth and you love to obey the truth, even though you fall short, those are the evidences of true conversion." From John MacArthur’s sermon LINK
(1) What did you like about what John MacArthur said?
(2) From ESV Study Bible on Matthew 7:24 "The evidence of whether one is truly a believer is in whether one does the words of Jesus" What is the proof of being a true believer?
(B7) Works - From John MacArthur's note on Romans 2:6-10 "Although Scripture everywhere teaches that salvation is not on the basis of works ..., it consistently teaches that God’s judgment is always on the basis of a person’s deeds ... The deeds of the redeemed are not the basis of their salvation, but the evidence of it. They are not perfect and are prone to sin, but there is undeniable evidence of righteousness in their lives."
(1) What is salvation not based on?
(2) What is God's judgment always based on?
(3) What are the deeds of the redeemed the evidence of?
(B8) What will take out many who start to follow Jesus - Luke 8:11-15 “This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is God’s word.
(12) The seeds that fell on the footpath represent those who hear the message, only to have the devil come and take it away from their hearts and prevent them from believing and being saved.
(13) The seeds on the rocky soil represent those who hear the message and receive it with joy. But since they don’t have deep roots, they believe for a while, then they fall away when they face temptation (this is added from Matthew 13:21 --> or they have problems or are persecuted for believing God’s word).
(14) The seeds that fell among the thorns represent those who hear the message, but all too quickly the message is crowded out by the cares and riches and pleasures of this life. And so they never grow into maturity.
(15) And the seeds that fell on the good soil represent honest, good-hearted people who hear God’s word, cling to it, and patiently produce a huge harvest."
(1) In v13 what did the rocky soil people "don't have" that caused them to be taken out by temptation, problems, or persecution?
(2) Is not having deep roots comes from not doing v15 (clinging to God's word)?
(3) In v14 what controls the thorny soil people?
(4) What are some examples of "the cares and riches and pleasures of this life"?
(B9) From the Believers Bible Commentary on Luke 8:11-15 "Jesus explained that the seed is the word of God (i.e. the truth of God-His own teaching).
(12) The wayside hearers heard the word but only in a shallow, superficial way. It remained on the surface of their lives. This made it easy for the devil (the birds of the air) to snatch it away.
(13) The rock-hearers heard the word too, but they did not let the word break them. They remained unrepentant. No encouragement (moisture) was given to the seed, so it withered away and died. Perhaps they made a bright profession of faith at first, but there was no reality. There seemed to be life, but there was no root beneath the surface. When trouble came, they abandoned their Christian profession.
(14) The thorny ground hearers seemed to get along nicely for a while, but they proved that they were not genuine believers by their failure to go on steadfastly. The cares, riches, and pleasures of life took control, and the word was stifled and smothered.
(15) The good ground represented true believers whose hearts were noble and good. They not only received the word but allowed it to mold their lives. They were teachable and obedient, developing true Christian character and producing fruit for God."
(1) In the commentary on v14 what is the end result of being controlled by "the cares and riches and pleasures of this life"?
(2) Which one of these 4 (not having deep roots, cares, riches, pleasures) do you struggle with the most?
(3) In the commentary on v15 what actions by the good soil people allowed them to produce a huge harvest?
(4) Which ones of these four types of people ended up in hell and which ones ended up in heaven?
(5) Another way of thinking about the thorny ground hearers is to determine if they are doing Jesus' requirements in the 5 passages that we studied in session 3 (Matthew 7:21-14, Mark 8:34-37, Luke 14:25-28, 33, Matthew 6:24, Matthew 13:44).
(6) What are those who are not clinging (increasing in knowledge of and obedience) to God's word in danger of?
(7) As we study Jesus' 50+ commands and teachings in the Sermon on the Mount we will learn how to cling to God's word and not to be controlled by the "the cares and riches and pleasures of this life".
(B10) How to have God's word change us - James 1:22, 25 "But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. ... (25) But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do." NIV
(1) From ESV Study Bible "In James, the “law” and the “word” are two different ways of describing the same reality."
(2) From the MacArthur Bible Commentary on "that gives freedom": "Genuine freedom from sin"
(3) In v25 if we want to have our lives blessed by God what four actions must we do?
(4) How can one do "look intently into the perfect law"?
(5) How can one do "continues in it"?
(6) How can one do "not forgetting"?
(7) Are you willing to crave out some time each day to do these four actions so your life will be characterized by being blessed?
(B11) Not just obey but also teach - Matthew 28:19-20 "Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, ... (20) TEACH these new disciples to OBEY ALL the commands I have given you."
(1) From NLT Life application Study Bible "We are to go—whether it is next door or to another country—and make disciples. It is not an option but a command to all who call Jesus “Lord.”" What does Jesus command each of us to do?
(2) How many of Jesus’ commands must ALL Christians learn and obey?
(3) If we are not teaching others are we disobeying this direct command from Jesus?
(B12) Review: Besides Matthew 7:24-27, what verse to you made it clearer that "learning Jesus' teachings is not enough, we must actually obey them"?
(B13) Summary: Making Jesus Lord of our life includes the commitment to follow His teachings (learning and obeying His commands more and more). Avoid destruction by the storm of final judgment by not letting the cares, riches, and pleasures crowd out God's word. Instead grow in obedience by daily clinging to God's word by looking intently, continually, not forgetting but doing God’s word. Obedience is the proof of our salvation.
(B14) Application: Is there any change you can start applying today from some teaching in this session? Write it down so you can remember it, do it, and discuss how it went in the next session.
(B15) Summary of sessions 1 - 4: To enter heaven we must take the difficult road by KEEP believing ONLY the Good News, serving ONLY Jesus as Master and OBEYING (not ignoring) Jesus' teachings.
(C1) Assignment for session 5
(1) Memorize: Memorize applications 1-4 word perfect.
(2) Session 5: Read carefully and answer all of the questions in session 5. We'll discuss session 5 next time.
(3a) Reading the Bible: Since our eternity depends on obeying, not ignoring God's word will you commit to spending at least a few minutes reading the New Testament EACH day? Then :
(3b) Text the verse you liked the most to everyone else in the group. This texting accountability greatly helps in developing consistency and encourages others.
(3b) Start with the Gospel of Matthew (unless you are already reading someplace else).
(3c) Skim Matthew 1:1-17 and start reading with Matthew 1:18. We recommend using the NLT Bible because, as the video mentioned, it's a great Bible to read.
(3d) Some groups send their Bible texts to the group text but if someone wants to respond to a text they send the text ONLY to the person who sent the text because that greatly reduces the number of texts sent.
(4a) Teaching Others: Who do you know that needs to learn how to take the difficult road? Maybe your spouse or someone in your family, extended family, a friend, someone at work, or in your neighborhood?
(4b) How can you start meeting with that person this week?
(4c) Pray, pray, pray that God will open their minds to understand his word.
(4d) One approach is to ask them to read Matthew 7:13-14. Then ask what is Jesus' warning? (take the difficult road). Then ask why? (because the road is difficult) Then say "In the next section Jesus teaches us how to take the difficult road enter heaven. Would you like to learn them?
(5) Listening to Sermon: Click here to watch or listen to session 5's Francis Chan sermon on Repentance ("The Holy Spirit part 3")
(6) Listening to Bible: Using the Bible App listen to Matthew chapters 5-10 this week, it'll only take about 30 minutes.
(7) Weekly phone call: In a few days call and encourage each other on developing these new habits of studying the next session, listening to a sermon, listening to the Bible, and daily texting your favorite verse you read. Also pray for each other's requests from this meeting. In groups larger than 2 each person calls the person on their right. That way each person will call the one on their right and receive a call from the one on their left. These two weekly phone calls are crucial.
(1) Share an update on last week's request.
(2) Share one thing you are thankful for this past week.
(3) Share 1-2 personal prayer requests for everyone to pray for this week.
(4) If you have time pray for the requests.