Community Group Homework
For the week of November 16, 2015
Looking back at your notes from this week’s teaching, was there anything that particularly caught your attention, challenged or confused you?
TALK ABOUT IT
- Have you experienced being in a courtroom? If so, what was it like and how did you feel?
- How would you define or describe justification or being justified?
In Romans 3:23-28, the Apostle Paul is explaining to the church in Rome how they are justified in the eyes of God. Read that passage and discuss the questions that follow:
23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. 25 God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith. He did this to demonstrate his righteousness, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished— 26 he did it to demonstrate his righteousness at the present time, so as to be just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus. 27 Where, then, is boasting? It is ex- cluded. Because of what law? The law that requires works? No, because of the law that requires faith. 28 For we maintain that a person is justified by faith apart from the works of the law.
- What are some of the ways that people justify their wrong actions or attitudes?
- Someone once asked the question: “If you were to stand before God and He asked, “Why should I forgive you?’ what would you say?” What are some answers you think people would give? How would YOU answer that question?
- In verse 24, how does Paul say we are justified in the eyes of God? What is the difference between being justified by Christ’s sacrifice and being justified by our actions?
In Luke 18:10-14, Jesus told this story:
“Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’ “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’ “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”
- How did the Pharisee (religious leader) in the story believe he was justified before God? Do you believe that there are Christians toady that have that same attitude?
- What was it that justified the tax collector? What is the takeaway for us from Jesus’ story?
TAKING IT HOME
- If we are freely justified in the eyes of God because of Jesus, how should that impact our relationships with other people? How do we live justly?