Note: I won’t be writing a Scattered Seed Devotional on Fridays during the 5 weeks of the Bible study. As it would just be doubling up my writing, and my weekly recap is nearly identical. Once the 5 weeks are over, we’ll return to the regular 7-day schedule. Please enjoy my thoughts on the Fruit of the Spirit below. See you on Monday!
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Concluding Thoughts on Chapter 7 – Goodness
Going back to the beginning of time, we see that God made two lights to shine in the sky. The greater to shine in the day and the lesser to shine in the night. What I see there are two lights, the greater being that of our Savior, “The Light of Life,” the lesser, his children “the light of the world.”
And, while the sun shines brightly in and of itself, the moon is merely a reflection of that light. Apart from Christ, there is no light, but by Him and through Him we shine. We shine to show others His goodness and grace, we shine to glorify God.
In Ephesians 5:9, Paul writes, “for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth.”
That metaphor of light is so important there as we see a contrast to the unfruitfulness of those who walk in the dark. If we ever think we are good, we’re wise to remember that we’re merely a spark compared to the all encompassing light of God’s goodness and grace.
As I look back on my life, I’m reminded of days when He sat by my side while I wept, the many times that He’s shared in my sorrow and pain. A listening ear when I’m needing a friend. Strong arms that found me in darkness and carried me back to the light.
Not just me of course, but each one of us. The rich and the poor, the saved and the unsaved… we see that the Lord is near to the broken hearted.
Looking to Genesis Chapter 16 we see the Egyptian slave, Hagar. Mistreated by her mistress Sarah, Hagar flees from their home and runs to the desert. And there in the desert, we see the goodness of God as He comforts Hagar.
Regardless of who she was in the sight of man, she was precious and dear to the Lord. And, like a good friend who walks by your side, He was there to comfort her pain.
Another example of God’s goodness is found in 1 Kings Chapter 19 where we see Elijah running from Jezebel afraid for his life. The Bible tells us that he sat down under a Juniper tree hoping to die, and in fact, he prayed asking that God would take his life.
Notice how the Angel of God tenderly cared for his needs. Like The Good Shepherd Who makes his sheep to lie down in green pastures beside the still waters, God nurtured and cared for Elijah. He gave him food, He gave him rest, and then in a still small voice, He gave him direction and hope.
Answer Key Chapter 7
Q. How is goodness most clearly defined?
Uprightness of heart and mind.
Q. Read 2 Corinthians 9:6. What does Paul say about those who sow sparingly? What are the seeds they are sowing?
Those who sow sparingly will reap sparingly. The seeds they are sowing are good deeds.
Q. What does Galatians 6:8 say? Write the verse here.
Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. (NIV)
Q. In Galatians 6:9 Paul talks about reaping a harvest. What do you think that means? (Also see 2 Corinthians 5:10)
The rewards we receive on judgement day.
Q. Can you think of a time when you did something good for the right reason?
(This answer will be different for everyone).
Q. Can you think of a time when you did something good for the wrong reason?
(This answer will be different for everyone).
Q. What does it mean to shine our light, and why do we do it?
To be an example of God’s love to others, so they will glorify God.
Q. In the Parable of the Ten Virgins, what made five of them foolish? What did they fail to recognize?
They failed to recognize the fact that a lamp without fuel is nothing more than religion without Christ.
Q. What does Luke 3:8 say to the modern church?
Religion won’t save you. You’re not saved by association, you’re not saved because you’re a member of a certain church. John is preaching repentance here, and telling them that fruit is a result of repentance.
Q. Fill in the blanks:
For the fruit of the Spirit is in all ______________ and ______________ and truth. (Ephesians 5:9, KJV)
Be not ______________ of evil, but overcome evil with ______________. (Romans 12:21, KJV)
But love ye __________ ______________, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your ____________ shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil. (Luke 6:35, KJV)
your enemies, reward
Concluding Thoughts on Chapter 8 – Faith
As we looked at faith this week, we talked about faithfulness. In particular, we talked about action. We talked about Noah building the ark by faith. We talked about Abraham willing to give up the one thing he loved most in this world, and we talked about The Rich Young Ruler who wouldn’t.
What we didn’t talk about yet is our belief in God’s faithfulness.
If we look at the story of Abraham again, we find these words in Hebrews 11:19,
Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure. (Hebrews 11:19, KJV)
And so we see that Abraham was faithful because he believed that God was Who He said He was. We see that his wife Sarah was faithful because she believed God was faithful.
Through faith also Sara herself received strength to conceive seed, and was delivered of a child when she was past age, because she judged him faithful who had promised. (Hebrews 11:11, KJV)
One of the toughest things we’ll ever do is fully trust God with our future, because it means that we’ll trust Him with the unknown. It means that we’re ready to step aside so that God can step up. It’s the best choice to make as we grow in our faith.
David knew the beauty of leaning on God when in Psalm 121 he wrote, “He will not let your foot slip—he who watches over you will not slumber.” (verse 3)
We live in uncertain times, as we’re left wondering what tomorrow will bring–unsure if things will get worse. And yet, we serve an unchanging God. We need only look up when we’re feeling down. He’s the same God today as He was yesterday–the same faithful God that He will be tomorrow.
Answer Key Chapter 8
Q. What is the Greek word for faith, and how is it defined?
The Greek word for faith is Pistis (Strong’s G4102) defined by Thayer’s Greek Lexicon as: fidelity, faithfulness, i.e. the character of one who can be relied on.
Q. What does James 2:17 mean?
That faith and works should go hand in hand.
Q. Why was Abel’s offering better than Cain’s in Genesis Chapter 4?
By bringing the firstborn of his flock, Abel was bringing his best. He was trusting God for the second, and third, etc.
Q. Why was the poor widow’s offering better than the others in Mark Chapter 12?
They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything—all she had to live on
Q. What are some of the ways that faith was expressed in Hebrews chapter 11? In other words, what actions did they each take? Can you find 5?
Abel offered God his best.
Enoch pleased God.
Noah built an ark.
Abraham left home to follow God’s direction.
Abraham offered his son as a sacrifice.
Moses parents hid and protected their child against the king’s commandment.
Moses chose to suffer affliction with the people of God.
Moses and the Hebrews kept the Passover.
Joshua marched around the walls of Jericho.
Q. How does Abraham’s faith differ from that of The Rich Young Ruler in Mark Chapter 10?
Abraham was willing to give up the one thing he loved most.
Q. In what ways was The Rich Young Ruler like Cain?
He was willing to give up some things to God, but wasn’t ready to give God his best.
Q. Have you ever had to give something up for your faith? If so, what was it? And, was it hard to give up?
This answer will differ for everyone.
Q. Charles Spurgeon explains faith by saying that it is made up of three things. What are they, and how do they work together?
knowledge, belief, and trust. We gain knowledge of Who Christ is by reading the Word. We believe that He is Who He says that He is, and we trust that He will do what He has promised to do.
Q. What is the difference between blind faith, and the kind of faith that Charles Spurgeon is talking about?
Blind faith lacks evidence and information. True faith is based on the knowledge of God’s Word, and the promises made by a trusted Savior.
During the 5 weeks of the Bible study, I’ll be creating a set of 4 x 6 inch note cards. Each week I’ll give you 3 for a total of 15 cards in total. These high resolution images will correspond with the theme of each week. Just so you know, the cards do fold, but the inside of each card is empty for writing in.
Please note: The (4.25 x 6.25) envelopes are not included with this printable. I found them at Amazon and thought they were so cute and colorful, and so I’ll definitely be getting some for myself. Click here if you are interested in those. (affiliate link)
Click the links below to view and print this week’s note cards.