Week Two – Day 2

Time to look at: A Radical Road

Read Matthew 7:13–27 from either your Bible or the print out from Week 2′s page 1.  These words of Jesus conclude the Sermon on the Mount, teachings on how to live as part of God’s kingdom as opposed to the political kingdoms, cultural standards, or religious routines of this world.

Knowing the context of this passage, how does it provide greater understanding to what Jesus is saying?

Got your answer?  ok.
Only God’s truth gives life, not politics, culture, or even religion.

1. God’s way leads to eternal life, not an easy life (Matthew 7:13–14).  Describe the two roads they talked about in the Bible.  I am going to put up a image for us to use to visualize it.
The top road is narrow, and the bottom is wide.

road

The Greek word for narrow doesn’t simply mean the path is more exclusive, but it is pressed hard upon, like grapes in a winepress. Every other use of this word for narrow in Scripture has a sense of tribulation, difficulty, and opposition from culture.

How many people are on the narrow path?   To where does this path lead?

road1

The world’s way is deceptive and leads to destruction (Matthew 7:15–20).

Now, the broad path and worldly values are not restricted to those outside the church community.  What imagery is used to describe worldly influences creeping into the church?   Yes, Wolves in sheep’s clothing  What does this communicate?  That’s right, they look harmless but… The harmless appearance of selfish values has a dangerous presence inside the
church if a careful watch is not kept.

2trees

 

What two trees are contrasted?  That’s right, good and bad

How can we recognize false teachings?  Right, by their fruit.

2trees1

It is impossibility of exhibiting something not a part of one’s character.
What is the outcome for the trees rooted in bad values?  Right, in the future, it would burn.

2trees2

 God’s will enables a relationship with Christ, not man’s ability (Matthew 7:21–23).

Jesus is speaking to people within the church community in this verse.  Do these people believe they are saved? Of course.  On what grounds?

people

What is the difference between the two people claiming the name of the Lord?

people1
On page 30, David Platt shares a story about a seminary professor taking his class to a cemetery.  How does the
thought of only God’s will being able to give spiritual life affect the way you understand a relationship with God?
Knowing all the right things to say and do can never save a soul. The only way to eternal life is through faith in Jesus resulting in a true relationship with God marked by submitting to His will. Worshiping according to our own abilities and desires, we are worshiping a god we have imagined.  Shocking isn’t it?

God’s Word is the sole foundation for radical living (Matthew 7:24–27).

In verses 24–27, what two foundations are described?

houses

What do both homes have in common?   That’s right, they both hear God’s word… however, when storms pressed against them, only one type of person remained on the solid ground of the narrow
way.

What is the difference between the wise and foolish man?

The sand house  “Ignores God’s Word” yet the rock “Obeys God’s Word.”
Chapter 2 in Radical opens with a story of house churches under intense persecution. Recall farmers leaving their fields for a
week to study God’s Word and the secret worship service described on pages 25–26 where people are crowded into a room
for hours for the sole purpose of responding to God’s Word in worship.  If all the comforts and conveniences of our
church culture were washed away, would God’s Word be enough for us? Is it enough now?

There are two radically different ways to live in this world.  There is no middle ground according to Christ. It is essential to know and follow God’s Word if you desire to walk the narrow path in fruitful obedience to eternal life.  There can be no warm… you must be either hot or cold.

Ok, lets watch this video for a moment:

David makes some distinctions between things we believe and what the Bible actually says (The Great Commission is only for a few rather than for all Christians; Christ died just for me rather than for all the nations).

Can you think of some other examples of beliefs Christians have traditionally held, either now or in the past, that are either incomplete understandings of Scripture or direct contradictions of Scripture?

For me, I believed that once I finally accept Christ into my life… as my savior… I am saved.  But what bothered me is, what about works?  Is it really something I should just lay back and accept and do nothing about it?  Or… am I suppose to give the glory to God?  Did Jesus die for me?  Or did He die for the glory of God?

How it is possible to get something as important as the teaching of the Bible wrong. If David is correct—our lives are to be lived for the glory of God as we experience His grace—then it is essential that we have a correct understanding of how He wants us to live those lives. This can only be obtained through the study of His Word.

 

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