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The text for this lesson is Exodus 19–20

Key Point

  • The Law kills, but the Gospel revives. “For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ” (John 1:17).
  • Law: The Ten Commandments define God’s Law.
  • Gospel: Jesus, through His incarnation and by His suffering and death for my sins, defines God’s love and mercy toward me.

Discussion Points

  1. In his Large Catechism, Martin Luther says, “Now we have the Ten Commandments, a summary of divine teaching about what we are to do in order that our whole life may be pleasing to God. Everything that is to be a good work must arise and flow from and in this true fountain and channel” (LC I 311). How do the Ten Commandments shape and guide your life and your daily decisions and actions?
  2. Read Exodus 19:1–9a. What is the message of the phrase “I bore you on eagles’ wings” (19:4–6)? See Psalm 103:1–5 and Isaiah 40:28–31. What titles of honor does God bestow on His people? See 1 Peter 2:9–10 and Romans 12:1–2.
  3. Read Exodus 19:9b–25. Why did God instruct His people to prepare for meeting Him by purifying themselves and getting ready for the third day? How is God’s command not to go up on the mountain an act of mercy? See also Genesis 3:22–24; Exodus 33:19–20; and Isaiah 6:1–5.
  4. In Exodus 19:16–20, how did God reveal Himself to His people? How did the Israelites react to God’s awesome presence on the mountain? See also Exodus 20:18–21. Is there such a thing as healthy fear of God?
  5. Read Exodus 20:1–19. In this context, how does God give the Gospel before He gives His Commandments (Law)? After God gave His First Commandment (Exodus 20:3), how did He explain and elaborate on it in verses 4–6? What does it mean that God is a “jealous God” (v. 5)?
  6. Read through the Ten Commandments (in Exodus 20:3–17 or in the Small Catechism), and ask yourself these two questions: (1) How do these Commandments show me my sin? (2) What gift does God protect in each commandment?
  7. Can you possibly keep God’s Commandments perfectly? See James 2:10 and Romans 3:23. What help and rescue does God give us in keeping His Commandments? See Galatians 4:4–5; 3:13; and John 1:17.(/li>

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