Our church is currently studying the book of Daniel. For ten-weeks we're walking through the book and talking about living a courageous life. For this series I volunteered to write the small group questions that go along with each sermon. It seemed like a waste to leave them in a file on my computer and not share them with everyone.
The book of Daniel was written to be a testimony to the sovereign, enduring glory of God. Since our lives are to be that too, there is much here we should learn. Since Daniel and his friends were able to make that glory known in an entirely secular environment, there is also much we can emulate. The first chapter of Daniel serves primarily as an introduction; it sets the scene for the other stories that make up the rest of the book. History tells us Babylon besieged Israel in 605 B.C. Daniel was approximately fifteen years old when he went into training for Nebuchadnezzar.
1. In the introduction of the sermon Neal shared about Roger Huang and his experience of transitioning to a foreign culture. Share a time when you went to a foreign country, or location, and felt like you didn’t fit in.
2. The Babylonians captured the Israelites and took the articles of the temple of The Lord (Daniel 1:2). They put those articles in their temple in an attempt to show they conquered God. Read 1 Samuel 5:1-5 to see how that worked for other nations that attempted to the same thing.
3. Thinking about Daniel 1:3-5, why do you think king Nebuchadnezzar required all the young men to be trained this throughly before entering his service?
4. Daniel had the close friendship of three people, who do you have that stand for God with you as you walk through the daily struggles of life?
5. Daniel and his companions had to decide what parts of the Babylonian culture they would adopt and what parts they would reject (see Daniel 1:8-14). How do you make that same determination in the culture we live in?
6. The presence of God is clear in Daniel 1. Verse 2 tells us: “The Lord delivered Jehoiakim kit of Judah into his hand…” Verse 9 says, “Now God had caused the official to show favor and compassion to Daniel.” and Verse 17 tell us, “God gave…” What does the fact of God’s sovereignty mean to you in everyday life?
7. What do you think gave Daniel, and his friends, the resolve to stand for God?
8. Close your time in prayer