Our church is doing a twelve-week sermon series through the book of Judges called: "Flawed Heroes." We are studying the Old Testament book for a couple reasons. One is that Judges is a book of flawed heroes and none of us are perfect. The book reminds us that God is the divine hero of the story. Judges is a period of transition for Israel, a transition from God as their leader to a monarchy. 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.
As we move into the second half of the book of Judges it is evident that Israel will continue their pattern of walking away from the Lord. In the beginning of Judges 10 we read that God saved Israel from themselves. At this point we read that Israel continued in their cycle of sin and finally was remorseful for their actions but remorse isn’t repentance. Israel needed to repent for idol worship and turn their hearts back to the Lord. After they do they we read about our next leader; Jephthah. Jephthah is proof that God can use anyone for His holy purposes. He is also a reminder of how strong faith and bad theology are detrimental to our walk with Jesus.
1) Neal started the sermon by talking about a five-week old baby who never received the medical treatment she needed. What is your thought about this story? We know its emotional so think about sharing a concise thought.
2) Read Judges 10:6, 14-16. Look at how the Israelites turned to idol worship. Talk about how God responded to Israel and how Israel responded to God. Think about a time in your life that you didn’t repent of your acknowledged sin quickly.
3) When we think about sin we have to remember its a human condition and a human issue. Read Romans 3:23, 5:8, 10:9-10. Talk about how sin hurts our walk with Jesus and how Jesus reconciles us back to God.
4) The way leaders are chosen is done in a variety of ways. Read Judges 11:1-11. What were some of the top reasons that Jephthah was chosen to lead Israel? Would Jephthah be your first choice? Why or Why not?
5) We read that Jephthah made a vow to the Lord if he would win the battle he would make a sacrifice to the Lord (read Judges 11:29-33). Human sacrifice is strictly prohibited in Scripture (read Deut 10:18, Leviticus 18:21). Why would Jephthah had made a vow that was so in contrast to God’s Word?
6) We all makes vows on a daily basis. We commit to call a friend, help someone on the weekend, or a marriage vow that we live out from years ago. Read Ecclesiastes 5:4 and Matthew 5:33-37. How important are the words we speak?
7) Jephthah had strong faith and horrible theology. If you had to describe the quality of your theology, how would you rank it? How can you keep a strong faith and a solid theology? Read Romans 12:1-2, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Titus 3:3-7 for reference.
Close your time in prayer. Talk about who you will invite to Coastline this week