Study the Bible in Two Years

Tuesday – Psalms 147-150

1.  Psalm 147 gives us many reasons to praise the Lord.  But what gives delight to Him?  See 147:10,11.

2.  Note who praises the Lord in Psalm 148. How do the many parts of God’s creation praise him and give him glory?  What thoughts does that give you about how we can praise him without actually using words?

3.  See Psalm 149:6.  What is the double-edged sword with which may praise the Lord as well as take care of God’s enemies?   If you’re not sure, check Hebrews 4:12.

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Published in: on November 5, 2013 at 2:35 am  Leave a Comment  
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Study the Bible in Two Years

Monday – Psalms 144-146

1.  We finish the Bible’s songbook with hymns of praise!  In Psalm 144, David praises the Lord who will win the battles for him.  What battles do we fight, for which we call on the Lord for his strength and help

2.  Psalm 145 praises the Lord for the blessings that he gives to all people, not justIsrael.  Find the verses that show this, including two verses that are often used as a prayer at meal time.

3.  Psalm 146 reminds us about whom we should trust for all things.  Why doesn’t it work to trust in rulers or governments?  See 146:3,4.

Published in: on November 4, 2013 at 2:34 am  Leave a Comment  
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Study the Bible in Two Years

Monday – Zechariah 13-14

1.  We see Jesus again in 13:1. How is this fulfilled?   Does this remind you of a Lenten hymn?

2.  13:7 is also about Jesus!   It’s fulfillment is quoted in Matthew 26:31 and Mark 14:27.

The second half of this prophecy refers to what will happen to those inJerusalem.   “Two-thirds” fall away and eventually perish. The faithful “one-third” is refined as in a fire, to purify their faith.   Agree/Disagree:  The church that preaches and follows God’s Word faithfully will always grow.

3.  Chapter 14 is Zechariah’s last mysterious message, which parallels Revelation in its imagery.  The People’s Bible explains: It is obvious that the Lord is speaking figuratively in this last chapter when he speaks of mountains splitting, of days without light, of time with no cold or frost, when the normal course of nature is reversed with light coming at evening, of living water, of bells on horses and cooking pots in God’s house. (p.117)  The imagery takes us to the last Great Day when Jesus returns!  Ponder the key verse – 14:9!   Every knee shall bow to Him!!

Published in: on October 14, 2013 at 2:01 am  Leave a Comment  
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Study the Bible in Two Years

Friday – Zechariah 9-10

1.  9:1-8 are filled with place names of the enemies of God’s people. The Syrians: 9:1, the Phoenicians, 9:2-4, the Philistines, 9:5-8.  The most important verses today are 9:9-13.  Imagine that you had been among the crowds of Palm Sunday, singing Hosanna to the promised King. They expected that he would be an earthly king over all nations.   Upon closer inspection, what items would show you that this King is different from an earthly one?

 2.  Note 10:2.  How are people today like sheep without a shepherd?  See also Matthew 9:36.

3.  We have a transformation in 10:3 – the flock will become what?  How is that also true of us?  What do we mean when we sing: “Onward Christian soldiers, marching as to war?”

Published in: on October 11, 2013 at 2:37 am  Leave a Comment  
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Study the Bible in Two Years

Thursday – Zechariah 7-8

1.  It is now 22 months since the first part of God’s revelation to Zechariah.  The temple is being built, but it not yet finished.  These two chapters are God’s response to a question about what?  See 7:3.  The Lord’s response is not just about that, but about our worship in general. How could fasting or feasting (7:5-6) in worship, be for self and not for the Lord?  Think about our Thanksgiving or Christmas customs.

2.  Note God’s warning in 7:13.  If people quit listening to him, what is God’s response?  Why does this come as a surprise to someone, when they only pray in times of trouble?

3.  In 8:1-2, how does the Lord feel aboutZion, his people?  What does that mean? Normally we consider that quality a sin when it happens to people.  However, in its original meaning, it means that the Lord is not willing to share us with any other god or anything else.  See how Paul uses the concept in 2 Corinthians 11:2-3.

4. Our “Jerusalem” is the church.  What qualities should our church have, according to 8:3?  8:18?  8:23?

Published in: on October 10, 2013 at 2:35 am  Leave a Comment  
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Study the Bible in Two Years

Wednesday – Zechariah 5-6

1.  Vision #6 (5:1-4) is a flying scroll.  It’s HUGE – how big is it?  There is also a scroll in the visions of Revelation, ch.5-6. That one has 7 seals, which only Jesus is worthy to break open. After each seal is opened a judgment comes on the earth. This scroll also brings judgment on sinners.  What part of God’s Word does it represent? In what way is that a curse?

2.  Vision #7 (5:5-11) is the original pandora’s box.  There’s a woman in the basket with a lead cover.  What does it represent?  Where do the women with wings take the basket?  In Revelation 17, the woman of Babylonis clearly the anti-Christian influences coming out of Rome. The Holy Spirit has Zechariah foreshadow the problem to come. For the time being, the woman is imprisoned in her basket in Babylon, but later, she’s going to get out to wreak havoc!  The point for us: In Christ, God has also removed iniquity and wickedness from his people. We are the Holy Christian Church!   How important it is to keep “wickedness” out of Christ’s church!  How has it crept back in? For what must we ever be on our guard?

3.  In vision #8 (6:1-8) we have chariots and horses going in all four directions.  We know from Elijah being carried home to heaven that these represent angels.  Angels are being sent everywhere to do what?   Confer Psalm 91:11 and Hebrews 1:1:14.

4.  In the final segment of chapter 6, we have a symbolic action.  This time Joshua represents the more famous person with his name – Yeshua or Jesus.  Normally the high priest could never be crowned as king. Here he is!  That’s Jesus!  What will he do? See 6:13.  What is God’s temple now?   See Ephesians 2:19-22.

Published in: on October 9, 2013 at 3:34 am  Leave a Comment  
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Study the Bible in Two Years

Tuesday – Zechariah 3-4

1.  Joshua is the high priest at the time of Zechariah.  His name is the Old Testament form of the name “Jesus.”  However we also have Jesus here as the angel of the Lord.  What does it mean that his filthy clothes are taken off, and rich clean garments put on him?  See 3:4 and then compare Isaiah 61:10 and Galatians 3:27.

2.  In 3:8, a special name is used for the coming Christ.  What is it?  What will he do?  See the end of verse 9.

3.  Vision #5 (4:1-14) is a picture of the church!  Lampstands (or menorahs) are used in the book of Revelation to represent the churches.  There is something unusual about this lampstand.  A bowl of oil feeds the 7 lamps and two olive trees directly provide oil to the bowl.  We know from the last verses that the olive trees represent the two anointed leaders at the time:  Zerubbabel, the Jewish governor, and Joshua, the high priest.  The oil is the work of the Holy Spirit.  When things don’t seem to be going well in a worldly way, how does the Lord encourage us in 4:6 and 4:10?

Published in: on October 8, 2013 at 2:33 am  Leave a Comment  
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Study the Bible in Two Years

Monday – Zechariah 1-2

1.  The prophet Zechariah and his family had returned toJerusalemin 536 BC, just like the prophet Haggai.  Zechariah’s book starts in the same year of Darius, the Persian King: 520 BC.    Both Zechariah’s and Haggai’s call to repentance had its desired effect (v.6).  The people returned to the work of rebuilding God’s temple.  We too need daily repentance and constant renewal of our dedication to the Lord. Repentance is a change of mind. About what areas of our lives does this incident lead us to change our minds?

2.  His prophecy is filled with visions, like John received in Revelation, and is filled with Christ!   Chapters 1-6 contain 8 visions that Zechariah received all in one night.  Besides Zechariah, there are three main characters in these visions: the Lord Almighty (The Father), the angel of the Lord (the Son or Christ), and a created angel who spoke with Zechariah and interpreted the visions for him.  What is the Christ doing in 1:17?  He has promised to do the same for us!  See Romans 8:34.

3.  A horn is a symbol of power or brute strength like a bull. Four horns stand for the enemies from all four directions, east, west, north and south. The four craftsmen are the forces from God that have destroyed the power of the enemy nations.  For Zechariah’s people, this would be the Medes and Persians. Who are the “horns” for us?  Who are the “craftsmen?”

4.  In vision #3 (2:1-13), Zechariah sees aJerusalemwithout walls.  Why doesn’t it need them?  See 2:4.  This is actually a vision of our time! Jerusalemtoday is the Holy Christian Church!  What does the Lord promise us in 2:10?

Published in: on October 7, 2013 at 2:31 am  Leave a Comment  
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Study the Bible in Two Years

Saturday – Haggai 1-2

1.  Haggai, together with Zechariah, were part of the group who leftBabylonin 536 B.C. to rebuildJerusalemand the temple and resettleJudah.  His four messages were all delivered within a span of 4 months, in the second year of the Persian King, Darius. So we know exactly when he preached:  520 B.C.   His first message:  Instead of building God’s house, what were the people doing?   How was that going to work out?  What are ways that we need to put the Lord first instead of ourselves?

2.  Read 2:3-9 carefully.  What was discouraging for the people, who had listened to the Lord and had eagerly started to rebuild the temple?   What does God promise to overcome their discouragement?  Who do you think is “the desired of nations?”  What will he bring?

3.  Haggai’s point in 2:11-14 is that merely coming in contact with something holy doesn’t make the common thing holy.  But coming in contact with something unclean, like a dead body, can easily make you unclean.  The point:  It is much easier to become defiled than it is to become holy.  God is going for the heart here.  He doesn’t want them to get all hung up in the outward physical work of building the temple, without taking their faith to heart. They (and we) are so easily defiled with sin!  Merely coming in contact with the temple and holy things will not make them holy.  What will?     See Eph. 5:26.

Published in: on October 5, 2013 at 2:16 am  Leave a Comment  
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Study the Bible in Two Years

Friday – Esther 8-10

1.  Once again, Esther brings her request to the king.  What is it? See 8:5.  Why can Xerxes not do this?  See 8:8.  Instead the king gives Mordecai the authority to issue another decree, whatever he desires.  What is that decree?  8:11.  What is different about this decree from Haman’s original one?  Note the first line of verse 11 carefully.

 2.  Does the Lord always correct injustices against his people?  If not now, then when?  See Psalm 73, especially verse 17.

3.  What was one happy result of the new edict?  See 8:17.  Were the people’s motives proper? What are some of the wrong motives for people to join the church today?  Can any good come out of wrong motives?

4.  The word “Purim” is the plural of “pur.”  The 14th of Adar falls exactly one month before Passover, in the spring.  This new feast was to help God’s people remember what? See 9:22.  What similarities do you see in our celebration of the Reformation?

Published in: on October 4, 2013 at 2:15 am  Leave a Comment  
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