The One Big Idea: God’s law must be the governing standard for Christians regardless of what may seem right in our own eyes.
1. A Pagan Morality (Judges 19:1-28)
The line separating good and evil passes not through states, nor between classes, nor between political parties but right through every human heart.
2. A Prideful Problem (Judges 19:30-20:48)
A Christian cannot survive apart from the preaching and teaching of God’s word, corporate worship, and the confirming sacraments of his promises.
3. A Pragmatic Solution (Judges 21:1-23)
The grace of God in Christ to dwell with his people in spite of our sin is the greatest of all miracles.
God’s people must have the leadership of a reightous king.
1. Compounding sin can never lead to God’s blessing.
2. God has established timeless worship principles which do not change to accommodate our preferences.
3. Rejecting God leads to stunning depths of brokenness, even as things continue to seem right in everyone’s eyes.
The one big idea: God accomplished his predetermined plans in and through a fallen creation to display his glory to all creation.
While we may not always understand the means God uses to accomplish his will, we can be certain that the end will be perfect.
God calls us out of the world and makes us different and different can be lonely.
God will never abandon me because he always remembers his promise to me.
One big idea: Yahweh is always the hero of every Bible story because he is never limited by the weakness of those he uses to accomplish his purpose.
1. I can laugh, even through my tears, at the events around me when I trust in the One who reigns from heaven.
2. I can stand in courage without compromise by trusting in the power of God and knowing I do not stand alone.
3. God’s promises are final, and no one can prevent them from being fulfilled, not even me.
God uses even the worst of our decisions and actions to accomplish His purpose.
1. Secrets destroy relationships and the people who keep them.
2. Secrets don’t remain secret. They become new secrets, and the danger continues.
3. In eternity past, the Triune God secretly planned our redemption and slowly unveiled the secret until the full revelation in the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
1. Christmas is about the birth of a Savior born to die to break the power and sting of death for all who believe he did.
2. By grace alone, I am a new creation, but I remain a creature. I can know God truly but not completely.
3. Before creation existed, the Father, Son, and Spirit purposed, through the saving work of the Son, to redeem a people to enjoy God’s presence forever.
Judges 10:6 – 12:7
The one big idea:
At the core of our fallen nature is a profound self-centeredness that keeps us from caring for others. At the center of God’s perfect nature is his unchanging love for those who do not care, even for him.
1. God chooses the weak and the lowly to accomplish small and great things for his glory, even me.
2. It is the height of human presumption and folly to think I can offer anything to God in exchange for his favor.
3. If I have put my faith in Jesus Christ then I am of Jacob, the Lord’s portion, his allotted heritage and I cannot be lost.
The one big idea: Grace is the act of free an unmerited favor that flows from God’s chesed (unfailing) love and finds its highest expression in the person and work of Jesus Christ.
1. Since only God’s grace enables me to do anything at all, I must always guard against thinking too highly of myself or my accomplishments.
2. It is a great tragedy when people presume upon God’s grace to the point where they despise it even as they seek it. May this never be true of us.
2. Repentance is a divine demand and forgiveness is given only because of divine grace not because of human sorrow.
Danger for God’s people can come from outside and from inside the covenant community.
1. When we fail to honor those who are instruments of God’s grace in our lives, we demean the giver of that grace.
2. Church leadership is a calling, not a convenience. We are to choose the best as defined by God, not just the available .
3. God will, at the right time, cause evil to destroy itself before it can destroy His people.
The character of the people is reflected in the character of the leaders they choose.
Judges 7:24 – 8:32
The one big idea:
As Christians, we must never forget that God stands behind every achievement in our vocation and our personal holiness.
1. I must never let my concern for status or my pursuit of security undermine the unity and energy of the church.
2. Every failure to recognize God as the source of our being and the fount that enables our good works is due to the sin of pride.
3. No amount of human folly can ever undo God’s promise of eternal life to His elect.