Jesus as Prophet: Day 4

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DAY 4: Jesus was a Prophet to the People

Throughout the week we’ve seen that a prophet spoke on behalf of God, how Jesus fulfilled Old Testament prophecies, and the truth that Jesus Himself was and is God in the flesh. One additional interesting aspect of Jesus’ life and ministry is that others referred to Him as a prophet. 

Here are a few examples:

  • When Jesus entered into the city of Jerusalem, many asked who HE was and the crowd responded, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth (Matthew 21:11).” 
  • After bringing back to life a man who was dead, the crowd responded, “A great prophet has appeared among us! (Luke 7:16).” 
  • When meeting a Samaritan woman, she responds to Him to say, “Sir, I can see that you are a prophet (John 4:19).” 

In short, the people Jesus Himself interacted with recognized Him not only as a great teacher, but as somebody who spoke directly on behalf of God.

READING & JOURNALING:

Matthew 5:1-7:29

Today’s reading is commonly referred to as the Sermon on the Mount. Which three of these verses or teachings stick out to you most? 

What do these passages teach you about God?

What steps can you put into place today (this week, month, or year) to live out these passages? 

 PRAYER:

Heavenly Father, sometimes I find it hard to read my Bible, and today I’m struck by an even greater challenge — living out my faith well! As such, today I simply hold onto You. I trust that You will never leave me nor forsake me, no matter how difficult the circumstances I face. Thank You for that! I pray in Jesus’ name. Amen. 

 

F260 READING: (A Scripture Reading Plan for Busy Believers)

The F260 is a Scripture Reading Plan designed to read through the foundational passages of the Bible in 260 Days (5 Days a week, 52 Weeks a year). It is a separate reading from the above devotional but is included for those who would like to engage with the Scriptures on a deeper level throughout the year.

Read: Joshua 1 & 2

Journal: Write it out. Following the pattern from 7 Arrows Page (click here) what did you learn from today’s reading?

 

Note: Are you looking for a Study Bible to help you engage with the Scriptures at a deeper level? If so, click here for some recommendations.

Jesus as Prophet: Day 3

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DAY 3: Jesus Fulfills Old Testament Prophecies

On Day 1, we read that the primary role of a prophet was to speak on behalf of God. Sometimes this meant that a prophet would talk about the future. This isn’t to be confused with a modern-day fortune teller. Instead, it was a message about real events which – according to God – would take place. 

The Old Testament mentions dozens of these prophets who spoke on behalf of God to His people. And many of these prophets spoke a message from God about a Savior, or a Messiah, who would come to save His people. 

One statistician has noted that the odds of having one person fulfill just 8 of the 300 prophecies in the Old Testament would be 1 in 1017. That’s 1 in 100, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000. To put this in perspective, it would be enough to cover the state of Texas two feet deep in silver dollars. The odds of walking through this mess of coins and picking up the one that was marked differently than all others, would be inconceivable. Yet Jesus fulfilled not just 8 of these Old Testament Prophecies. He fulfilled them all. 

READING & JOURNALING:

Isaiah 53, Luke 23:44-56

How regularly do you pause to consider how remarkable it is that Jesus fulfilled so many Old Testament prophecies? 

Which verse or verses in Isaiah 53 stands out to you most? 

PRAYER:

Heavenly Father, it’s not often that I truly reflect on Old Testament prophecies and consider that Jesus fulfilled them all. Today, it’s simply my desire to reflect on the awe of wonder of Jesus. May I continue to know Him more and more each and every day. I pray in His holy name. Amen. 

 

F260 READING: (A Scripture Reading Plan for Busy Believers)

The F260 is a Scripture Reading Plan designed to read through the foundational passages of the Bible in 260 Days (5 Days a week, 52 Weeks a year). It is a separate reading from the above devotional but is included for those who would like to engage with the Scriptures on a deeper level throughout the year.

Read: Deuteronomy 32:48-52 & 34

Journal: Write it out. Following the pattern from 7 Arrows Page (click here) what did you learn from today’s reading?

 

Note: Are you looking for a Study Bible to help you engage with the Scriptures at a deeper level? If so, click here for some recommendations.

Jesus as Prophet: Day 2

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DAY 2: Jesus is the Word of God

As we read yesterday in Hebrews 1:1-4, Jesus spoke directly on behalf of God. This ought to create within us a desire to pause and pay very careful attention to everything He taught. 

But Jesus was much more than a prophet who spoke on behalf of God. The Scriptures also indicate that He Himself was the Word of God. He didn’t just speak the Word of God, He was the Word of God! 

This would indicate that everything He spoke was from God, everything decision He made was from God, and every act of His life was an act of God. 

The Life Application Study Bible notes on John 1:1, “This is the truth about Jesus, and the foundation of all truth. If we cannot or do not believe this basic truth, we will not have enough faith to trust our eternal destiny to Him. That is why John wrote this Gospel—to build faith and confidence in Jesus Christ so that we may believe that He truly was and is the Son of God.” 

READING & JOURNALING:

John 1:1-14

Why do you think that some in our culture struggle to believe that Jesus was God? 

What are at least 3 reasons you believe Jesus was and is God?

Can you think of anybody you can share one or more of those truths with sometime this week? 

If you don’t yet believe Jesus was and is God, what do you believe about Jesus? Will you consider the possibility over the next few weeks that Jesus was and is God?

PRAYER:

Heavenly Father, I recognize that Jesus is the Word, and that every word in the Scriptures ultimately all points to Him. Today, I simply pray that I would know Him better. Amen.   

 

F260 READING: (A Scripture Reading Plan for Busy Believers)

The F260 is a Scripture Reading Plan designed to read through the foundational passages of the Bible in 260 Days (5 Days a week, 52 Weeks a year). It is a separate reading from the above devotional but is included for those who would like to engage with the Scriptures on a deeper level throughout the year.

Read: Deuteronomy 30 & 31

Journal: Write it out. Following the pattern from 7 Arrows Page (click here) what did you learn from today’s reading?

 

Note: Are you looking for a Study Bible to help you engage with the Scriptures at a deeper level? If so, click here for some recommendations.

Jesus as Prophet: Day 1

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DAY 1: The Role of a Prophet

Try to imagine living in the ancient world sometime between 1,000-500 B.C. What are you doing for a living? How do you teach your kids? Where do you go for spiritual advice? 

As you can imagine, education was very limited in the ancient world. As such, people would turn to a local prophet for religious insight. These prophets were common in every nation, not just within the nation of Israel. Every religion or belief system had men or women who served the role of a prophet. 

What was their role? Primarily, the role of a prophet was to speak on behalf of the people’s God (or god). While this sometimes included speaking what was going to happen in the future, it was primarily about speaking their God’s (god’s) truth. In simpler terms, when a prophet spoke, the people listened! This person was speaking directly on behalf of their God (god) and the people wanted to know what their God (god) had to say. 

Hundreds of years later, Jesus arrives and takes on the role of a prophet. Everything Jesus spoke, He did so on behalf of God.

READING & JOURNALING:

Hebrews 1:1-4

How intently ought we study the life of Jesus if He truly did speak on behalf of God?

What questions do you have about the life of Jesus? (Think of as many as you can.) Where will you go or who will you talk with in order to find the answers to these questions? 

PRAYER:

Heavenly Father, I understand that no matter how long I’ve been a follower of Jesus, there is more that I can learn from Him. As the Christmas Season approaches, my desire is to be connected to Jesus, the Vine (John 15), so that I can grow in my love of You and love of others. I pray in Jesus’ name. Amen. 

 

F260 READING: (A Scripture Reading Plan for Busy Believers)

The F260 is a Scripture Reading Plan designed to read through the foundational passages of the Bible in 260 Days (5 Days a week, 52 Weeks a year). It is a separate reading from the above devotional but is included for those who would like to engage with the Scriptures on a deeper level throughout the year.

Read: Deuteronomy 8 & 9

Journal: Write it out. Following the pattern from 7 Arrows Page (click here) what did you learn from today’s reading?

 

Note: Are you looking for a Study Bible to help you engage with the Scriptures at a deeper level? If so, click here for some recommendations.

King of Kings: Introduction

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A Note From Pastor Justin:

In our former message series, The Kings of Old, we looked into the lives of 10+ different kings from the Old Testament. Even though these kings lived in a completely different culture and in a completely different period of time, it was clear from their lives that the decisions they made impacted not only their own lives, but the lives of countless others. It’s a valuable lesson that still speaks to us today: our decisions impact not only our own lives, but the lives of countless others. 

But The Kings of Old message series also showed that there were other important roles within the people of God in the Old Testament. Yes, there were kings. But there were prophets and priests as well. 

We saw that God takes each of these roles very seriously. For example, King Saul made a sacrifice before a battle because the Prophet Samuel wasn’t there. The consequences for King Saul were both swift, and severe. Similarly, King Uzziah once took the opportunity to burn incense in God’s temple, a role that was designated only for Priests. Uzziah also experienced punishment from God. 

What this teaches us is that God had a very specific role for Prophets, Priests, and Kings. And in His infinite holiness, wisdom, and majesty, God showed that He was very serious about ensuring these roles were fulfilled by the right people and in the right ways. 

Several hundred years after The Kings of Old, a new man arrives amidst the people of God. And for the first time ever, this One man was able to fulfill the roles of Prophet, Priest, and King. Not only that, but He also takes on the role of Savior. Join us, as we journey more deeply into the life of Jesus. 

As we begin this new message series, we encourage you to:

  • Commit to joining us every week of this series.
  • Commit to reading through this Reading Guide, reflecting and journaling through the questions provided within each daily reading.
  • Use a good Study Bible and/or other resources as you read through this Reading Guide. Refer to https://southridgeblog.com/study-bible-info for more information on many excellent Study Bibles available today.
  • Write down questions you have about what you’re reading, and take opportunities to seek out answers to those questions. 

Josiah: Day 5

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DAY 5: Weekly Reflection

JOURNALING:

What’s getting in the way of you growing in your relationship with God? (e.g., your view of God, your view of yourself, self-centeredness, entertainment, lustful pleasures, jealousy, envy, etc.).

Write down at least 2-3 steps you’ll take over the next week to remove these obstacles and grow in your relationship with God.

F260 READING: (A Scripture Reading Plan for Busy Believers)

Read: Numbers 16 & 17

Journal: Write it out. Following the pattern from 7 Arrows Page (click here) what did you learn from today’s reading?

 

Note: Are you looking for a Study Bible to help you engage with the Scriptures at a deeper level? If so, click here for some recommendations.

Josiah: Day 4

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DAY 4: The People Celebrate

How often do you truly celebrate something? Perhaps you celebrate a birthday, a Holiday, or another special event throughout the year, but do you really go all-out in your celebration? 

For many of us, we’ll celebrate on some levels, but not in a big way. Wedding anniversaries may be celebrated on a bigger level at 20, 25, or 50 years. Birthdays, too, may be celebrated on a larger level at certain ages. But many celebrations may be fun and enjoyable, but not an all-out wholehearted celebration. 

For the people of Judah, this was about to change. King Josiah commanded the people to celebrate Passover, an event for them to remember how God had saved his people hundreds of years prior in Egypt. And what a celebration it was! 2 Kings 23:22 reads, “There had not been a Passover celebration like that since the time when the judges ruled in Israel, nor throughout all the years of the kings of Israel and Judah.”

As you read today, consider this: What is something big God has done in your life that you, your family, and friends can celebrate in a big way over the next year? 

READING & JOURNALING:

     2 Kings 23:21-28

What is something big God has done in your life that you, your family, and friends can celebrate in a big way over the next year?

F260 READING: (A Scripture Reading Plan for Busy Believers)

Read: Numbers 13 & 14

Journal: Write it out. Following the pattern from 7 Arrows Page (click here) what did you learn from today’s reading?

PRAYER:

Heavenly Father, when I think about something in my life that is worth celebrating, the simplest answer is You. You are worth celebrating for sending Jesus to live and know what it’s like to experience difficult trials and circumstances. You are worth celebrating for Jesus dying on the cross and bearing the burden of my sins. You are worth celebrating for creating me in Your image. You are worth celebrating for rescuing me. You are worth celebrating for so much more. May I celebrate You for the life transformation You’re working in my life each and every day. I pray in Jesus’ name. Amen. 

 

Note: Are you looking for a Study Bible to help you engage with the Scriptures at a deeper level? If so, click here for some recommendations.

Josiah: Day 3

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DAY 3: God’s Covenant Renewed

In our culture today, there are a couple of topics that people shy away from discussing, especially in the workplace. Both Religion and Politics are sensitive topics, with people creating self-made lines that form into an Us vs. Them mindset. 

Things were not so different in king Josiah’s day. After having God’s Word read to him, Josiah made the decision to completely reform the nation of Judah. He wasn’t just focused on his family, or his city. Judah represented the people of God, so Josiah wanted to be certain they all worshiped God and God alone. 

How did Josiah lead? He started by having the people renew their covenant with God. This covenant was much more than a legal agreement. It was a life-commitment to God and His Word. It was a sincere dedication to rid their lives of the things that interfered with their relationship with God. It was much more than attending worship services together. It was total full-on commitment to God each and every day. 

As you read today, consider this: Is there any area of your life in which you’re not fully committed to God and His Word? 

READING & JOURNALING:

2 Kings 23:1-20

Is there any area of your life in which you’re not fully committed to God and His Word?

What steps can you take today, this week, this month, and into the next year to yield this area of your life fully to God? 

Who can you ask to help you and hold you accountable as you take these steps? 

F260 READING: (A Scripture Reading Plan for Busy Believers)

Read: Numbers 11 & 12

Journal: Write it out. Following the pattern from 7 Arrows Page (click here) what did you learn from today’s reading?

PRAYER:

Heavenly Father, I don’t want to enter into life with an Us vs. Them mindset. While there will always be others I disagree with when it comes to religion, politics, or other topics, I still want to live acknowledging that all people have been created by You, are deeply loved by You, and that You are regularly inviting me to love others in the same way You love me. Help me to love others better. In Jesus’ name. Amen. 

 

Note: Are you looking for a Study Bible to help you engage with the Scriptures at a deeper level? If so, click here for some recommendations.

Josiah: Day 2

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DAY 2: Real Life Transformation

Be honest: When you spend time in prayer, do you spend more time praying for your circumstances to change, or more time praying that God would truly transform your life? That you would come to know Him so strongly that He could change your perspective and see things more like He does?

In his book simply titled Prayer, Pastor and Author Timothy Keller writes, “It is remarkable that in all of his writings Paul’s prayers for his friends contain no appeals for changes in their circumstances. It is certain that they lived in the midst of many dangers and hardships. They faced persecution, death from disease, oppression by powerful forces, and separation from loved ones. Their existence was far less secure than ours is today. Yet in these prayers you see not one petition for a better emperor, for protection from marauding armies, or even for bread for the next meal. Paul does not pray for the goods we would usually have near the top of our lists of requests.”

As you read today, consider this: How are your own prayers similar to the Apostle Paul’s? How are they different? 

READING & JOURNALING:

Today’s reading is a compilation of prayers from the Apostle Paul in the New Testament. These prayers are how he prayed for his friends who were likely experiencing adversity on a level far greater than we do today. Read through these passages in the order listed, and then answer the questions below. 

Philippians 1:3-6; Philippians 1:9-11; Colossians 1:9-12; Ephesians 3:16-19; Ephesians 1:17-19; Colossians 3:12-17; Philippians 4:8-9

How are your own prayers similar to the Apostle Paul’s? 

How are they different?

F260 READING: (A Scripture Reading Plan for Busy Believers)

Read: Leviticus 26

Journal: Write it out. Following the pattern from 7 Arrows Page (click here) what did you learn from today’s reading?

PRAYER:

Today, write out your own prayer to God. Don’t pray that He would transform your circumstances. Instead, invite Him to transform your life.

 

Note: Are you looking for a Study Bible to help you engage with the Scriptures at a deeper level? If so, click here for some recommendations.

Josiah: Day 1

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DAY 1: Inspiration vs. Transformation

What is the most inspiring movie you’ve ever seen, or book you’ve ever read? Now be honest, what kind of an impact did it really have on your life? 

In this day and age, you may watch a movie, read a book, or hear a message at church that is inspirational. You’re encouraged to make a change in your life, whether it’s to take on a new goal, eat healthy, exercise more, or something else. Sometimes these inspirational stories lead to real, honest life change. But many times an inspirational story doesn’t actually lead to life transformation. Transformation occurs with repeated, habitual decisions. 

King Josiah finds himself in a very unusual position of becoming king at a very young age (8 years old). 18 years later, a copy of God’s Law is discovered and read to the king. Immediately, he begins to make reforms for the nation of Judah. These reforms won’t occur overnight, but ongoing transformation will occur due to Josiah’s desire to honor God and His Word. 

As you read today, consider this: How do you think real life transformation occurs? 

READING & JOURNALING:

     2 Kings 22:1-20

How do you think real life transformation occurs? Be specific. 

Think of a time when you were inspired to change something in your life, but you didn’t actually transform that area of your life. What do you think would’ve most helped you to follow through? 

F260 READING: (A Scripture Reading Plan for Busy Believers)

Read: Leviticus 23

Journal: Write it out. Following the pattern from 7 Arrows Page (click here) what did you learn from today’s reading?

PRAYER:

Heavenly Father, today I confess that I regularly enjoy inspirational books, movies, or other stories, but I don’t regularly follow through when it comes to transforming these areas of my life. While there may be many reasons for this, I recognize that the main reason is that I seek out inspirational stories instead of seeking out a transformational God. You and You alone can change me in the person You’ve made me to be. Help me to be that person. I pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.  

 

Note: Are you looking for a Study Bible to help you engage with the Scriptures at a deeper level? If so, click here for some recommendations.