Bible Study: August 24, 2014

by Staff/LifeWay Christian Resources, posted Thursday, August 21, 2014 (one month ago)

NASHVILLE (BP) -- This weekly Bible study appears in Baptist Press in a partnership with LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention. Through its Leadership and Adult Publishing team, LifeWay publishes Sunday School curricula and additional resources for all age groups.

This week's Bible study is adapted from The Gospel Project curriculum.

Bible Passage: Matthew 5:17-20

Discussion Questions: What are some ways Jesus shows continuity with the Old Testament? How does He seem to perfectly reflect God's Old Testament image? What are some ways Jesus shows us a further developed vision of God? How does the gift of "grace upon grace" answer the law's demands? How does the Gospel invite us to relax and breathe easy? How does that invitation speak to your present condition and to the day ahead of you?

Food for Thought:

It's not uncommon to feel overwhelmed and burdened by the law of God. As presented, it is far beyond our capacity to obey.

But in the New Testament, we're given a new way of seeing and experiencing God's law through Jesus, who fully accomplished all that the Law demanded. He offered us a different kind of life through Himself. In John 1:14-18, John tells us that Jesus -- the Word of God -- came to dwell among us "full of grace and truth," giving us "grace upon grace." His point was that Jesus is a more complete revelation of God than the law.

It's not, as some suppose, that God changes between the Old and New Testaments; it's that Jesus made available a fuller picture of who God is. One might think in terms of how Jesus "colored in the lines" or "brought the picture into focus." We're still looking at the same image; but Jesus has added a new dimension of clarity to the image, revealing God's immense grace and His loving mercy as He came to dwell among us.

As you pray and reflect today, take time to thank God for how far He has gone to reveal Himself to us in Jesus. Breathe easily and rest knowing that in the presence of God, because of Jesus, you have nothing to earn and everything to gain.

The Gospel Project

The Gospel Project is a Christ-centered curriculum that examines the grand narrative of Scripture and how the Gospel transforms the lives of those it touches. Through a three-year study plan, participants are immersed in the Gospel through stories, theological concepts, and calls to missions from Genesis to Revelation. Separate study plans for kids and students/adults ensure the proper focus and depth. The Gospel Project is designed to unify an entire church under a single Christ-centered curriculum. More information, free samples, and The Gospel Project blog can be found at gospelproject.com.

Other ongoing Bible study options for all ages offered by LifeWay can be found at LifeWay.com/SundaySchool.