Life’s Questions – Week 35 Study Guide

By September 15, 2019Small Group Study Guide

How do Faith and Reason Work Together?

With all your mind: The mind and worship

OPENER

Terry opened his sermon by having us imagine a person who had perfect recall—she got every question right!

He also talked about a personal injury he had to his shoulder and the difference between his and the expert’s opinion of what needed to happen. His examples were intended to get us to thinking about who we are trusting and why. Will we trust even when the “experts” answer is different than what we believe is right.

Question: What do you do if the expert’s answer is different from the prevailing wisdom? Would it be reasonable or unreasonable to trust this person, even if what they said was different from what you thought? Are you doing what makes sense to you but it’s not working?

*Human experts are one thing. But the Bible—God’s Word to us—is on a whole different level.

The Bible describes the world, your life, and mine, as they actually are. Ultimately, all the questions we have about our lives come down to this: Is God there? Is He good? Is He powerful?

Question:  Think about your own life, and the questions you have, are one of the three questions above at the core of your struggle? If so, share with the group why you think so.

Are you looking towards the Bible, the Word of God, for answers to your life? What keeps you from doing so?

Reminder: THE GOAL FOR 2019: 

To grow/strengthen our confidence in the Bible to speak with authority to every area of our lives. 

OBJECTIVE

Our objective is to look at what it means to “love God with all our minds.” By using our minds to worship God.

Worship is a powerful ally in leading us to Love God with all of our heart, soul, strength, and mind!

STUDY

READ: Psalm 19:1-14:

“1 The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. 2 Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge. 3 There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard. 4 Their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world. In the heavens he has pitched a tent for the sun, 5 which is like a bridegroom coming forth from his pavilion, like a champion rejoicing to run his course. 6 It rises at one end of the heavens and makes its circuit to the other; nothing is hidden from its heat. 7 The law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul. The statutes of the LORD are trustworthy, making wise the simple. 8 The precepts of the LORD are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the LORD are radiant, giving light to the eyes. 9 The fear of the LORD is pure, enduring forever. The ordinances of the LORD are sure and altogether righteous. 10 They are more precious than gold, than much pure gold; they are sweeter than honey, than honey from the comb. 11 By them is your servant warned; in keeping them there is great reward. 12 Who can discern his errors? Forgive my hidden faults. 13 Keep your servant also from willful sins; may they not rule over me. Then will I be blameless, innocent of great transgression. 14 May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.”

Questions: What do we learn about God in this passage? What point is the psalmist communicating? What does the passage tell us about nature, God’s Word, David’s reflection, and worship?

*David was undoubtedly a man of great emotion as you can see clearly in many of his Psalms, but look at the use of his mind to drive him to worship, he is thinking deeply about things here.

David uses his mind to contemplate God’s general revelation. (The Cosmos)

READ:

Psa. 19:1-6 “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge. There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard. Their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world. In the heavens he has pitched a tent for the sun, which is like a bridegroom coming forth from his pavilion, like a champion rejoicing to run his course. It rises at one end of the heavens and makes its circuit to the other; nothing is hidden from its heat.”

Discuss: 

David’s view of the universe from planet earth was and is an accurate one, and always will be no matter what we discover.

David contemplated/meditated/thought about God.

His reflection, his thinking about what he saw and what he knew of God, caused him to want to write a Psalm of worship.

Question: What do we learn about worship in the passage?

David uses his mind to contemplate God’s special revelation. (The Bible)

READ: 

Psalm 19:7-11, “The law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul. The statutes of the LORD are trustworthy, making wise the simple. The precepts of the LORD are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the LORD are radiant, giving light to the eyes. The fear of the LORD is pure, enduring forever. The ordinances of the LORD are sure and altogether righteous. They are more precious than gold, than much pure gold; they are sweeter than honey, than honey from the comb. By them is your servant warned; in keeping them there is great reward.”

Discuss:

Special revelation: a term that describes God speaking to us through his word and later through the Lord Jesus.

Question: How does David use his mind to come up with all the ways God’s word is a gift and a blessing to his life? How can we do the same?

David uses his mind to contemplate a relationship with God

READ:

Psalm 19:12-14, “Who can discern his errors? Forgive my hidden faults. Keep your servant also from willful sins; may they not rule over me. Then will I be blameless, innocent of great transgression. May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.”

Discuss: 

He admits what we all should admit; we don’t know what we don’t know. He is asking for God to help him have the will to obey. He repents. His confidence is not in self, but in God’s grace.

He wants his life, like the created order itself, to communicate God’s reality and glory.

Jesus said that out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks. What is most fully in us, is what most consistently comes out of us.

Question:  What is most fully in you? What do you speak about the most? Why is that?

APPLICATION: Take the time to think deeply about God’s attributes. Allow your heart and life to be shaped by the reality of God’s glory. Don’t lose the ability to experience wonder. Use technology and things in the world today to draw your mind to God’s greatness. Worship is engaging our minds in the wonder of God, and it never requires us to leave our minds disengaged. 

Worship! Love God with all of your mind. Transformation occurs when our minds are filled to overflowing with thoughts of God.

Make Psalm 8:3-4 a reality for you this week, take time to consider the heavens. Allow the wonder of creation to draw you into worship!

“When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him?”

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