During the first part of the Easter season, we’ll be looking at the story of David and Goliath to understand the power of the resurrection in our lives. Rather than living in fear, complacency, anger, and rejection, God has opened up a new way for us to live in him. Through God, the “goliaths” of our lives no longer have the power over us. This week, we’ll look at how God, through Christ, has set us free from rejection.
What is one of the most embarrassing thing you’ve ever done? Why did you do it?
1 Samuel 17:20-53; Hebrews 13:1-81 Samuel 16:1-7; 17:26-31; 17:38-40,45-47: Hebrews 4:14-16
Read 1 Samuel 16:1-7 & 1 Samuel 17:26-31
- Think about these passages from the perspective of Eliab. How do you think his experience of rejection in Chapter 16 shaped his response to David in Chapter 17?
- Now, think about this passage from the perspective of David. How did he experience rejection?
- How do you think most people experience rejection? Is it through large traumatic experiences, or more mundane forms of rejection? What forms of rejection do you think are most common?
- This weeks sermon discussed the dynamic of “rejected people rejecting people” and creating cycles of rejection. Have you ever seen or experienced this in your own life?
Read 1 Samuel 17:32-37
- Saul initially rejects David based on his appearance and age. Do you see these forms of rejection alive and well in our culture? How so?
- How does David respond to Saul’s rejection? How has his relationship to God shaped his response?
- Where have you felt God’s acceptance of you? Why do you think it can be hard to experience this acceptance?
Read 1 Samuel 17:38-40, 45-47
- David’s speech to Goliath is rooted in his belief about who God is in relation to Israel. Who do you believe about God’s faithfulness, especially in relation to you and your community of faith?
- What truths about God’s acceptance do you see in this story? How does it relate to God’s acceptance of us through Christ?
- How might this story played differently if David allowed himself to succumb to rejection? Why is acceptance so powerful?
- What areas of your life do you feel rejected in? Why? How does the Good news of God in Jesus respond to those areas of rejection?
Diving Deeper: Christ Our High Priest
Read HEBREWS 4:14-16
The author of the book of Hebrews explores the idea of Jesus as our high priest. This idea is rooted in the dual concepts of Temple worship and ritual purity. During early expressions of Jewish worship, God’s holy presence was uniquely present in the Temple. As most people were sinful or impure, God could not accept or allow them to be in direct contact with him. As such, a high priest would serve as a ritually pure stand-in for the people of Israel. This person was ritually cleansed so God could allow them into His presence. Once their, the high priest could repent on behalf of the people and ritually absolve them in God’s presence.
- How does God’s acceptance of Jesus relate to God’s acceptance of you? Why does that even matter?
- Verse 15 discusses how Jesus empathizes with us in our struggles and knows our temptations. How is empathy important for helping cultivate our acceptance of others?
- The final verse talks about approaching God directly. In the analogy to the high priest, the author of Hebrews says that because of Jesus, we can now go directly to God ourselves and not fear his rejection. Is this a truth you feel like you live into? If this idea is hard to accept, why?