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Sunday 18 April Jenn Bufford

Knowing the God of Joy

Jenn walked us through Nehemiah Chapter 8. The walls of Jerusalem are rebuilt and everyone gathers to hear the reading of the law. God renews His promise of relationship with Him. Jenn talked about how God is revealed in the scriptures of the Bible & how this revelation of God brings joy. She encouraged us to include Bible reading and study as a life rhythm. God is the only source of lasting joy.

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Life Group Questions

Sunday 18 April

Read Nehemiah 8:1-18

To focus on challenges in understanding the Bible:

The people gather to hear the word of God, but there is lots more going on than just reading. Different people are involved in interpreting and instructing the people on what it means, encouraging people and directing a response to what is said.

  • What challenges do you find in understanding the Bible?
  • What helps you to understand what you are reading?
  • How confident are you that you know how to respond to what the Bible is saying?
  • How confident are you in communicating what the Bible says to others?

To focus on being aware of our own assumptions:

In this passage, the scripture is read, interpreted, and understood by the people, but then Ezra, Nehemiah and the Levites re-interpret the ‘big idea’ based on the people’s response – v.9-12.

  • What are some of the key overarching truths about God and us that we need to keep in mind whatever passage we are reading?
  • How can our pre-existing beliefs and assumptions cause problems as we are interpreting the Bible?
  • How can we deal with these things better when we are reading together?
  • What are the strengths and weaknesses of discussing Bible passages in a group setting?
  • How can we help each other in making and maintaining a response to what we have read?
  • Can a single passage lead different people to different responses? Why or why not?

Pray for growing confidence in understanding God’s word, greater responsiveness to His leading and for joy in living out His will.