Sojourn Family, Much Love, Jeremy Linneman Pastor of Community Life

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3 Sojourn Family, Over the next five months, we are exploring the fantastic Old Testament book of Exodus. You likely know Exodus as the great narrative of God s redemption of his people from Egypt, and you can probably name most or all of the Ten Commandments given in Exodus 20. But even if you re familiar with this great book, we can look at it with the eyes of our heart and see the God who is there: The God Who Redeems (Exodus 1-19), The God Who Gives (Exodus 20), and The God Who Sends (Exodus 21-40). Just as Moses was given a glimpse of the glory of the LORD (chapter 33), we hope to gain a fresh and true look at God. We hope you enjoy the sermons and your discussions in this series, and we are praying that you are moved to praise and worship just as Moses was in his Song after the exodus through the Red Sea (15:1-19). I will sing to the LORD, for he is highly exalted. The LORD is my strength and my defense; he has become my salvation. Who among the gods is like you, LORD? Who is like you majestic in holiness, awesome in glory, working wonders?. The LORD reigns for ever and ever. The first five weekly studies The God Who Redeems (Exodus 1-19) is contained in this booklet, and the remaining weeks will be gathered in subsequent booklets. Remember, you won t get through all of these questions, but as you prepare for your gathering, consider which questions might be most helpful and meaningful for your people. If there is any way we can better serve or resource you during this series, please let us know. Much Love, Jeremy Linneman Pastor of Community Life Note: Some questions have been adapted from Tony Merida, Exalting Jesus in Exodus: Christ-Centered Exposition Commentary (Holman 2014).

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5 THE GOD WHO REDEEMS Exodus 1-2 Opening Question Take time to catch up on one another s summers. What has God taught you over the summer? What evidences of his grace have you experienced? Context and Meaning Summarize Exodus 1:1-2:10, then read 2:11-23 out loud. What types of slavery does Israel experience in Egypt? Why did Moses s first attempt to help the Hebrews fail? What were the practical, social, and spiritual reasons? What attributes or characteristics of God do you see on display in Exodus 1-2? Read Psalm 146:7-9 out loud. How do you see God s heart for justice and mercy demonstrated in our passage? Deeper Reflection How is this story of God s provision for Moses personally encouraging to you? What does it mean for you that God is our Redeemer? What about our Mediator? What types of oppression, addiction, or enslavement are you currently experiencing? (Consider spiritual, relational, social, and economic forms.) How do you see God keeping his promises to you right now? How has God prepared you for ministry? Have you learned your most valuable lessons in a palace or in the wilderness? Where might God be calling you to trust him to step into an area of need in the world? Application One theologian has said, an Exodus-shaped redemption demands an exodus-shaped mission. What would it look like for us to derive our mission from God s mission? How might God s concern for the totality of human need change how we treat and approach others? Think through how we as a group can: Engage urgent physical needs in our neighborhood (social, economic needs) Engage urgent spiritual needs in our neighborhood (through sharing our faith in Christ) Engage urgent physical and spiritual needs around the world (hunger, poverty, sex trafficking, etc.) Prayer Take time together to pray aloud praising our Father for his provision for his people throughout all generations, asking him for faith to believe fully in his promises, and seeking his wisdom for how your group can best engage the spiritual and physical needs around you. 5

6 THE GOD WHO REDEEMS Exodus 3-10 Opening Question How have you seen God use imperfect and unimpressive people to do great things in his Kingdom? Context and Meaning Read Exodus 3:1-14 out loud and summarize chapter 4-10 in your own words. Recall what we discussed last week that God promised to rescue his people out of complex oppression and keep them safe in his care. What does this narrative add to the story of Exodus so far? What are the major themes or promises? What is the significance of God s words, I am who I am (3:14)? In what sense was the nation of Israel God s firstborn son? In what sense are Christians firstborn sons of God? In what sense is Jesus the firstborn Son of God? Deeper Reflection How might God accomplish his plan for your life without changing a single thing about you? How have you struggled with discouragement as you seek to believe God s promises to you? In what areas of life are you tempted to believe it would be easier or better to not follow God? Which aspect of salvation liberation, redemption, adoption, or inheritance is the most dear to you? Why? Application Make a list of three to five practical ways that you can remember or rehearse the Good News of our redemption on a daily basis. (Think about worship, prayer, Bible reading and meditation, evangelism, and so on.) How might you absorb yourself in the power and freedom of the gospel every day? Prayer Take time together to share how God is inviting you to draw closer to him in faith and obedience. Spend time praying aloud for one another, and encourage one another in how you see God at work in each other. In what ways are you uniquely gifted (even if it s something simple or unimpressive) to serve in God s Kingdom and provide for the needs of others? What would it look like for you to fully trust God s statement, I will be with you (3:12)? 6

7 THE GOD WHO REDEEMS Exodus Opening Question What has been the most noteworthy thing you ve learned through Exodus so far? Context and Meaning Summarize Exodus 1-12 in your own words, then read 12: Review what we discussed the last two weeks that God promised to rescue his people out of complex oppression, then equipped Moses, an ordinary and limited person, to lead this redemption. How does this passage fulfill the promises of God to Israel in previous chapters? How should we consider the ten plagues on Egypt? How do you see God s justice and mercy on display through them? Why was it so important that the Israelites understand and celebrate the Feast of Unleavened Bread? What is the significance of the firstborn son in light of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus? Why does sin always require a sacrifice? Deeper Reflection Read 1 Peter 1:18-22 and Revelation 5:11-14 together. Consider Jesus Christ as the ultimate Lamb of God a lamb without blemish or defect (1 Pet. 1:19) and our new Passover lamb (1 Cor. 5:7). What does it mean daily to center our faith on Christ? The Old Testament often provides physical demonstrations of spiritual realities in the New Testament. How have you experienced the similar redemption and freedom from spiritual oppression in your own life? In what sense did Israel have to trust God and how did their obedience play a role in their redemption? In 1 Pet. 1:22, why does Peter describe love for one another as our natural response to Christ s work? What does this mean for us as a community? Application The Israelites were instructed to remember the exodus by celebrating the Passover annually. What are some practical ways we as a CG can remember the sacrifice of Christ, celebrate the Good News, and encourage one another in love? (Consider sitting together and taking communion with one another on Sundays, celebrating each individual s life in Christ annually by having them share their testimony on their birthday, or memorizing a portion of Scripture together and encouraging one another in the process.) How can we commemorate what Christ has done as our Passover Lamb? Prayer Take time together to pray aloud, thanking God for such a great redemption and praying for one another to fully enjoy the benefits of Christ s sacrifice. 7

8 THE GOD WHO REDEEMS Exodus Opening Question How do you see an obsession with the death to life or resurrection motif in our culture? Why are we so intrigued by resurrection stories? Context and Meaning Summarize Exodus in your own words and read 14:5-31 aloud. Review what we discussed the last three weeks God s promise of redemption, his calling of Moses, and the dramatic Passover event. What has been most significant to you in this Exodus narrative so far? Why did God go ahead of his people as a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night (Ex. 13:20-22)? According to Ex. 14:4, 17, and 31, why did God allow Pharaoh and the Egyptians to pursue Israel? How would you respond to someone who said that this event didn t really happen or is just a myth? How would you describe the parallels between the exodus event and the Good News about Jesus? How is Israel s crossing of the Sea similar to Christian baptism? look like to look forward to the city that is to come? In light of the pillar of cloud by day, what does it look like to journey by God s presence today? (Consider the role of the Holy Spirit; Jesus said, He remains with you and will be in you John 14:17). What does it mean for God s presence to be with and in his church as an entire community? Why is the Lord so passionate about his own glory? What does that mean for your life where can you prioritize his glory and name? Application Take time talking through your own life journeys together. Have each person consider and describe their walk with God in the following terms: First hearing God s voice; Where you felt like God delayed; When God s promises have been fulfilled; Which of God s promises are yet to be fulfilled; What it looks like to walk by faith in God s presence now. Prayer Take time together to pray aloud for your friends and neighbors who have not yet experienced freedom in Christ and the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit. Deeper Reflection What specific promises of God can we cling to today? Consider Hebrews 13:14. What does it 8

9 THE GOD WHO REDEEMS Exodus Opening Question Describe a story, movie, or book you ve recently seen/read that described someone who had to take the hard road in life. Why was it so compelling? Context and Meaning Read Exodus 15:1-19 out loud. Review what we discussed the last four weeks that God s promise of redemption, his calling of Moses, the dramatic Passover event, and the exodus through the Sea. How would you summarize the first half of Exodus in terms of promises made and promises fulfilled? Consider other instances in Scripture where God s people spontaneously break out in song: Adam s song after the creation of Eve (Genesis 1-2) Deborah s song after Israel s victory over Canaan (Judges 5) Hannah s song at the birth of Samuel (1 Samuel 2) Mary s response to the angels news and Elizabeth s greeting (Luke 1:46-55) Zechariah s prophecy after the birth of John the Baptist (Luke 1:68-79) All of God s people praising the Lamb of God (Revelation 5) How and why is it so appropriate for us to respond to God s work in praise, thanksgiving, and song? What is it about singing that is so significant for our spiritual formation? Deeper Reflection Consider Moses s song in light of the coming of Jesus. How does Christ s life and work provide a new level of clarity and power to God s work in Exodus? What would it look like for you to frequently praise God for his glory and name (v. 3), his personal work ( my strength and my salvation, v. 2), his promise keeping ( my father s God, v. 2), his reign as a triumphant warrior (v. 3-10), his uniqueness ( who is like you among the gods? v. 11), and his love (v. 13)? Describe a time you felt like you were in an impossible situation and then God brought you through? When is it appropriate to stand still and see God s salvation? When does obedient activity come into play? Application and Prayer Take a moment to dwell on verse 13: In your unfailing love you will lead the people you have redeemed. In your strength you will guide them to your holy dwelling. Make a list of circumstances that are challenging your trust in God s love and consider how God is still present and leading you in each circumstance. Take time to share these with the group and encourage one another. What does it mean for you to trust God s unfailing love and leading right now? 9

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