Proverbs – Week 16 Study Guide

JESUS, THE WISDOM OF GOD REVEALED.

Proverbs 4:7

“Wisdom is supreme, therefore get wisdom.

Though it cost you all you have get understanding.”

Discussion 1: Sufficiency of Christ

Read the following passage:

Colossian 1:15-20 15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. 17 And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. 19 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.

Note: Terry started by telling us that Paul wrote this poem to help the church in Colossae practice thanksgiving. Paul was giving them a mental focus point—a fixed reality of Who Jesus is. Keep in mind that Paul was a man who had been imprisoned…multiple times and tortured numerous times and rejected by people he had given his life away for. (See His Resume in 2 Cor. 11:23-29 / His weakness in verse 30 / see 2 Cor. 4:7-11)

What we often look to in order to be thankful or to feel thankful, are contingent things. Things that depend on this or that becoming true or staying true. What Paul gives the little church in Turkey as the focus of their mental practice of thanksgiving is the fixed reality of who Jesus is and what he has done.

Q1: In your own words, share with the group why this passage gives us a reason for thankfulness and gratitude even when we’re in difficult circumstances.

Q2: Now bring it home, how do Jesus and His gospel encourage thankfulness in your own life as you struggle through difficulties?

Discussion 2: Paul’s Prayer

Read: Col. 1:9-14

9 And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, 10 so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him: bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11 being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy; 12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. 13 He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. (ESV)

Q1: What is it that Paul is praying for? Identify them and discuss them.

Q2: Terry said that Information without application is a dead end, it’s like a merry-go-round, but information with application leads to transformation, it’s ongoing growth. In your own words, how is this Col. 1:9-14 more than just information?

Q3: read Col. 1:11. Terry said that God’s will is given and manifested as: endurance, patience, and joyful thanksgiving. Chew on that for a minute. Now give your thoughts on how these three have been manifested in your own life.

Q4: Read verse 14. What does Paul say is the reason for thanksgiving?

Application:

Remember that Paul wrote this poem in the midst of prose (normal speech)…because he wanted them to think deeply…to slow down…let some thoughts settle in their minds.

Take time in the next few weeks to think it over carefully…use your imagination and your emotions and your rational thought…use your full mind, emotions, and will…what the Bible calls your heart.

Make Colossians 1:15-20 you prayer for today!

Colossian 1:15He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. 17 And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. 19 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.

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