Open your Bibles to Deuteronomy 6 for this weeks study.
- The lessons that Israel was to learn some 3500 years ago are the same lessons we are to learn (e.g. Paul applies them in 1 Corinthians 9:24–10:22). In general, why don’t we learn from history? Why does the human race (even God’s people) keep on making the same wrong decisions? What can make us learn?
- What causes people to wander away from God? Has there been a time when you wandered? Why? What did you learn from this experience?
- 40 years was a long time to wander through the desert before the Israelites could enter the promised land. What reasons might there be why God chose a 40-year delay? What did God achieve in Israel during the 40 years? Do you think God did achieve all he wanted Israel to learn?
- Read Deuteronomy 6:10–12 and 8:6–10. There are many things God wanted to bless the Israelites with. List as many as you can! These blessings are all fairly material in nature (e.g. livestock, health, prosperity). Is that still true for us today? Why or why not? What are the alternatives?
- Why (there can be many reasons) does God require our obedience before he blesses us with some things?
- In 1 Corinthians 9:24–27, Paul talks about the ‘prize’ that he and the Corinthians were to ‘run’ for. There were three different ideas about what the ‘prize’ is: (1) Heaven; (2) Serving Jesus in this life; (3) Eternal rewards in the next life. Which option do you think is right? What might be some good reasons for each view?
- Which particular application is most personally relevant for you? Is it about repenting and returning back to God? Or your involvement and responsibility in teaching and training children? Or is it how ‘Old Testament’ teaching is so impactful for us today, and we need to learn and obey it? Or is it something else?
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