Community Group Questions 7/15/12

Tip of the Week:
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Our riveting video tips will resume after summer. A lot of groups are on break and we don't want anybody to miss all the incredible insight provided by these videos.
Announcements:
Please share whichever of the following announcements apply to your group
  • SSFFMN
    • How many of you heard how awesome SSFFMN was?
    • THIS Friday July 20th at 7pm
    • Free popcorn and beverages will be available for purchase
    • Bring your own chair, blanket, tent
  • WPWM
    • 8 week study on Malachi
    • Wednesday nights from 7-9pm
    • Study guides will be available for purchase at group for $15
  • Student Outreach Project
  • Steffen to fill in details

Sermon Title: Now, Part 2: Their Now is Greater than our Now

Main Text:  2 Chron 33:1-9, 2 Kings 21:10-15, 2 Chron 33:10-17, Phil. 3:12-14

Topics:

  • This message and this series are largely influenced by the fantastic book, Finishing Strong, by Steve Farrar. Check it out!
  • Manasseh was one of the most evil persons in history
  • He became king at 12 years old and reigned for 55 years
  • He was known to be the worst of Judah’s kings
  • He reversed all of the good things his father, Hezekiah, had done
  • He promoted idolatry, child sacrifice, and sorcery
  • One of the Gods he encouraged people to worship was Molech
  • Molech was worshipped by heating the idol to white hot temperatures and then tossing first born children to their death on the idol
  • Manasseh sacrifice his own first born son in this manner
  • He brought idols into the temple that Solomon built where the spirit of God dwelt.
  • Even though he had a Godly father, he embodied evil
  • God uses two metaphors to describe his judgement
    • Leveling a hill - He basically said he will level Jerusalem
    • Wiping a dish - He said he would wipe Jerusalem clean
  • Manasseh and his people ignored the warning so God sent the Assyrians to capture them
  • Manasseh was bound and thrown in a dungeon
  • He then repented and humbled himself before God
  • God restored his kingdom even after all the evil he had done
  • Manasseh then finished strong by performing several God-honoring tasks.
  • Paul also acknowledged his own shortcomings and set the example for us to finish strong by focusing on the future.
  • D. L. Moody explained that by two and a half conversions he meant 2 children and one adult because the children had their whole life in front of them, but the adult only had half.
  • Two Challenges:
    • Where do you need to finish strong personally
    • How can you help a child finish strong with his whole life in front of him?
  • 19 out of 20 Christians receive Christ before the age of 25

Key Questions:

  1. What would it be like to have a 12 year old king?
  2. What would it be like to have an evil president for 55 years?
  3. Was the story of Manasseh shocking to you?
  4. What part of the story of Manasseh was the most shocking?
  5. Did the story of the worship habits of Molech shock you?
  6. Does it frustrate you that someone can be so evil and still be forgiven by God? What about being restored to power?
  7. Do you believe Manasseh’s good deeds after his restoration made up for his evil?
  8. What do you think was the purpose of the imagery that God uses to describe his wrath against Manasseh?
  9. Does it encourage you that someone like Paul had the same struggles we have today?
  10. What area of your life is calling out for you to finish strong?
  11. How will you get involved in the life of someone that has their whole life in front of them?

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