Sunday, December 31, 2023

Isaiah 6:8-13 & Matthew 13:10-17

There exists a gap between perception and interpretation of reality. Different people can look at the same evidence and come to wildly different conclusions. When it comes to who God is and what he’s doing, sometimes the people who are privileged with closest proximity to him are the most blind to God’s reality.

Starting Out:
1. If you could have insight to unravel one unsolved mystery, which would you choose?

Read Isaiah 6:8-10:
2. Why would God send a messenger to make people deaf and blind?
3. Is this what God wants to happen, or what he knows will happen?
4. What are some things that keep people from perceiving and understanding?

Read Isaiah 6:11-13:
5. Is suffering necessary for people who are far from God to be brought nearer to him?
6. The destruction of Israel is on the horizon, but what is the hope Isaiah refers to in Verse 13?

Read Matthew 13:10-17:
7. Should the way we share the gospel ever be non-obvious and measured?
8. Are there people who claim Jesus as their Lord and Savior, but have unseeing eyes and unhearing ears? How can we know that we’re properly perceiving the truth of the Gospel?
9. One blessing of the Church is to perceive what Old Testament saints longed to understand (17.) In what ways is our understanding of God different from that of Moses or David or Isaiah?

Taking it Home:
10. Is there anything about your faith that is hard to accept? If so, what?
11. Can you think of a way to leverage past or present fears and doubts about your faith to be able share the Gospel with greater empathy?

Other Scriptures to engage with this week:
Matthew 13:1-23 • Mark 4:1-20 • Luke 8:1-15 • Romans 11