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Small Group Notes
Small group notes for September 23
How do you tend to handle waiting?
In what situations or circumstances do you most often find yourself growing impatient? How important is it that we learn patience in our walk with God? Why?
Worship: sing or listen to this song Here I am to worship
Word: 1 Samuel 13:1-15
ontext: Saul’s first charge from God as king of Israel was to attack the Philistine’s garrison at Geba and wait for further instructions at Gilgal (see 1 Sam. 9:26-10:13).
1. How did Saul respond to Jonathan’s victory over the Philistines (vv. 3-4)? What does that tell us about Saul?
2. Compare Saul and Jonathan’s forces (v. 2) with that of the Philistine forces that had gathered at Michmash (v. 5). How did this imbalance affect the men in Saul’s army (vv. 6-7)? What does that tell us about the Israelites?
3. How did Saul respond to the news that Israelite soldiers were deserting in fear? How should he have responded instead?
4. What would you have felt if you were in Saul’s shoes? What would you have done?
5. Where was Saul’s focus when he went ahead with giving up burnt offerings and sacrifices on his own? What caused him to lose patience?
6. What does impatience reveal about our hearts? What does it communicate about our relationship with God?
7. How did God respond to Saul’s impatience (vv. 13-14)? What does this tell us about God?
8. What does God’s response to Saul’s impatient actions tell us about the importance of addressing and combating the impatience in our hearts?
9. Why is patience essential to the building of Christ’s kingdom? Why is it essential at our church? In our community? Among the nations?
In what current situation or circumstance do you find yourself growing impatient? What is one step you might take this week to cultivate a heart of patience before the Lord in that area?
Small group notes for September 30
Welcome: Growing up, how serious were your parents about your following the rules and guidelines they gave you?
Worship:sing or listen to Meekness and Majesty
Word: 1 Samuel 15
1. Why is God so harsh on the Amalekites? (see Exodus 17:8-16, Numbers 24:20; Deuteronomy 25:17-19).
2. Did Saul keep God’s full instructions as given in v.3?
3. What does it mean in v. 11, “I regret that I have made Saul king”? Does this mean that God, being omniscient, made a mistake in appointing Saul as king?
(“I regret” is what is called anthropomorphic language. That is, God’s actions and thoughts are put into man’s terms so that man can understand God and His actions. The meaning here is, “I’m very sorry that things aren’t working out, as I knew they wouldn’t.”)
4. How did Samuel respond to the news about Saul? (v. 11)
Application: How do we respond when we hear that one of our brothers or sisters has fallen into sin?
5. How do we know from this passage that Saul does not think he’s done anything wrong, that he’s carried out God’s commandments fully and properly?
6. What does this tell us about Saul?
7. What is Saul’s perspective on his carrying out God’s commands in verse 13?
(Saul has an incomplete view of obedience. His view is called “relative obedience”; that is, he carried out only that part of the command that he thought he needed to carry out. He “reinterpreted” the command)Application: Have you known someone that only puts into practice PART of what God tells them, or just PART of a Scripture? How does God fell about us getting something “mostly right”?
8. What is Saul’s explanation for his men keeping the best livestock? (v. 15) What’s wrong with that explanation?
9. Who made Saul king?
Application: Instead of giving the praise to God, do we sometimes garnish it for ourselves? How do we credit God for how we got here? Or do we sometimes raise our education, self-will, hard work, etc. as having accomplished it for yourself?
10. What does Samuel know about Saul’s motives for keeping the livestock? (v. 19)
11. Who does Saul put the blame (responsibility) on in verse 21?
12. In verse 21, how does Saul refer to God?
13. In verses 22-23, what is the Lord’s view of rebellion and insubordination? Why?
14. What is the second “curse” placed on Saul by Samuel in verse 23b?
15. What is Saul’s response now?
It seems so ridiculous when we put it in words, but why do we sometimes think we have ideas that can improve on the instruction God has given us?
How do people today sometimes attempt to offer God sacrifices rather than obeying Him? What “regret” have you caused God?
What partial obedience do you need to make right with God?
Are you trying to avoid full obedience to God, or attempting to appease Him through good works? If so, repent.