Lectionary for December 9, 2018
Second Sunday in Advent, Series C, ESV
Malachi 3:1-7b, The Messenger of the Lord
Interestingly, the Hebrew words for "my messenger" are mal'aki and is normally used of a priest or prophet. Therefore, there is some debate as to whether Malachi was an actual person or an anonymous prophet whom God called "my messenger". Malachi 1:1
I send my messenger, and he will prepare the way before me , verse 1. Who is my messenger? Matthew 11:7-11 How did the messenger prepare the way? Mark 1:4-5 Who is the Lord … the messenger of the covenant? Hebrews 9:11-15
In verse 3, what do we know about the sons of Levi whom the Lord will purify? Deuteronomy 10:8-9
What offering, verse 4, of ours is pleasing and acceptable to the Lord? 1 Peter 2:4-6
judgment , verse 5, final judgment, when God will gather all nations before His glorious throne. Matthew 25:31-32
Psalm 66:1-12, How Awesome are Your Deeds
Psalm 66 can be offered by any believer in any time of hardship. The Lord's deliverance at the time of Hezekiah (2 Kings 19:8-37; Isaiah 37:8-38) may have been the original occasion that gave rise to this psalm. The Lord will make all things, even hardships, work out for their ultimate good. Romans 8:28-29
Verse 1, Shout for joy to God, all the earth. God is so great, all humanity and all creation are invited to praise Him. Psalm 148:1-4, 7-12 All creation will acknowledge Him in eternity, though the unbelieving will do so only by compulsion. Philippians 2:8-11
So great is your power that your enemies come cringing to you. , verse 3, see Joshua 5:1 and 2 Chronicles 20:13-30.
To what events may the psalmist be referring to in verse 6? Exodus 14:21-31; Joshua 3
God's eyes keep watch, verse 7. Exodus 3:16-17
God keeps our soul among the living and does not let our feet slip, verse 9. Psalm 121 expands on these ideas!
What are some examples of a crushing burden, verse 11, laid on the backs of God's people? Genesis 3:16-19; Exodus 1:8-14
What is meant in verse 12 when it says, you let men ride over our heads;? Isaiah 51:21-23 What is the place of abundance? Deuteronomy 31:6-8.
Philippians 1:2-11, Thanksgiving and Prayer
In verses 4-5, Paul states his prayers for the Philippians are filled with joy because of their partnership in the gospel from the first day until now. What happened in those first days? Acts 16:11-40
What is the good work in you, verse 6? John 6:29 When is the day of Jesus Christ.? Matthew 26:63-64
What kind of imprisonment is Paul speaking about in verse 7? Ephesians 4:1; Philippians 1:12-18
What must we do to be filled with the fruit of righteousness, verse 11? John 15:4-5; Ephesians 5:6-11
Luke 3:1-20, John the Baptist Prepares the Way
God has used various means to inspire His prophets to write (Hebrews 1:1). On some occasions, such divine inspiration came through dreams or visions (Daniel 7:1-2; 8:1). At others, it came through an audible voice (Ezekiel 2:1-2; 3:1-3). Luke does not specifically record how God's word was revealed to John only to say in verse 2, the word of God came to John.
In verse 3, John is proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. How were sins forgiven at that time? Numbers 6:9-12, 15:27-28
What is the wrath to come, verse 7? Romans 1:16-25
In verse 8, John states, " do not begin to say to yourselves, 'We have Abraham as our father'" , to warn the crowd that spiritual confidence based on biological descent is no substitute for repentance.
Why were some of the people questioning in their hearts, verse 15, that John the Baptist might be the Christ? Luke 1:13-17; Isaiah 40:3-5
John the Baptist says of Jesus in verse 16, " He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire." This was fulfilled at Pentecost. Acts 1:4-5, 2:2-4 The fire is also associated with judgment. Malachi 3:2-3; 1 Corinthians 3:10-15
In verse 19, Herod Antipas, who was the governor of Galilee and Perea, had been reproved or reprimanded by John because Herod had divorced his wife and taken Herodias (his niece and former wife of his brother Phillip).
Why did Herod imprison John, verse 20? Mark 6:14-20