Hey Everyone - HUGE THANKS TO EACH OF YOU FOR BEING A LIFE GROUP LEADER THIS SEMESTER. THANKS FOR LOVING GOD AND HELPING STUDENTS!
- The lesson is below. Please take some time to be prepared to lead your group.
- We plan to be outside, but will move inside if it be rainy.
- Everyone needs to wear a mask if we go inside.
You will find the lesson below. We will have handouts for all students...and handouts for you as well. The students' pages will not have the answers in italics below, but yours will.
MAKE SURE YOU READ THROUGH THIS LESSON AND KNOW WHAT YOU WILL BE TEACHING. DO THIS BEFORE LIFE GROUPS BEGIN...NOT DURING LIFE GROUPS.
Life Groups – Week 3 – February 28, 2021
God introduces himself to Isaiah as the most holy and high king on a throne. He rules and he is to be worshiped.
Because of our sin, we cannot stand in his presence apart from being covered or cleansed.
Christ covers us in his righteousness and cleanses us by the sacrifice of his life for ours. His death and resurrection and our faith in him allow us to stand before the holy King and worship him. We will follow him as he calls us to go tell others.
Why THIS MATTERS
In the United States, we don’t have a concept of royalty and we don’t like to submit to another’s control. We are known for equality and independence. We want to have it our way. But in God’s kingdom, we were designed to come under his control and authority.
I WANT MY STUDENTS TO:
KNOW: God is holy which means to be pure and set apart from everything else. As the king, he is in total control, has total power over the universe, and deserves to be worshiped.
EXPERIENCE: See God as holy and have broken hearts over their sin. Be in awe of God’s holiness and majesty.
DO: See our sin, confess it, turn towards God and ask for cleansing. Respond to his holiness by worshiping him and submit to him as king.
ACTIVITY TO START YOUR TIME WITH YOUR GROUP:
Part of the goal for this semester is that you do not just have small groups, but groups who get to know each other...and get to laugh together...and share life together. This game will hopefully help your group to start the night in a fun way.
THE LAST SEVEN DAYS
Go around the circle and let students talk about 1 good and 1 challenging thing from the last seven days. Try to help everyone in your group pay attention to each person, and feel free to ask follow up questions to anyone who has an interesting story.
The goal is to have fun, laugh, find out more about your group, and help your group relax around each other.
STUDENT LESSON STARTS HERE:
(everything below is on the student handout, except the parts in italics)
WHAT DO YOU THINK?
Basketball star LeBron James broke a major rule when he met Prince William and Duchess Kate, English royalty. LeBron put his arm around Kate when they took a photo. Here are some of the rules for meeting royalty:
1) Stand when royalty enters the room.
2) Only speak when spoken to.
3) Address the Queen as “Your Majesty” and the Prince and Duchess as “Your Royal Highness.”
4) Never touch them, unless they offer a brief handshake.
5) Don’t chew gum.
6) Stop and bow 20 feet from the throne.
7) Stop eating when they stop eating.
8) Don’t turn your back on them.
What’s your reaction to this kind of royal treatment?
In America we are not used to having or being around royalty. We expect everyone to be treated equally. The closest we come to this is being around celebrities. In the passage we are going to read, Isaiah describes his encounter when he meets God seated on a throne.
1It was in the year King Uzziah died that I saw the Lord. He was sitting on a lofty throne, and the train of his robe filled the Temple. 2Attending him were mighty seraphim, each having six wings. With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they flew. 3They were calling out to each other, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of Heaven’s Armies! The whole earth is filled with his glory!” 4Their voices shook the Temple to its foundations, and the entire building was filled with smoke. 5Then I said, “It’s all over! I am doomed, for I am a sinful man. I have filthy lips, and I live among a people with filthy lips. Yet I have seen the King, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.” 6Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a burning coal he had taken from the altar with a pair of tongs. 7He touched my lips with it and said, “See, this coal has touched your lips. Now your guilt is removed, and your sins are forgiven.” 8Then I heard the Lord asking, “Whom should I send as a messenger to this people? Who will go for us?” I said, “Here I am. Send me.” (NLT – New Living Translation)
WHAT DOES GOD SAY ABOUT THIS?
In a few places in the Bible, the writers describe a picture of heaven. These passages are sometimes strange to imagine and a lot like a Sci-Fi movie, but they do give us an idea of what God is like. In this passage, Isaiah sees how holy God is. Holy means sacred, set apart, and so different than everything else. It also means morally and spiritually pure. Let’s read about what a guy named Isaiah saw when he saw heaven.
Have someone read Isaiah 6:1–8. What is happening in this story?
Remember, we're trying to understand a place which is not in this world, and to many extents is beyond our understanding. Trying to put heaven in earthly words is not always possible...like trying to explain Disneyland to an ant. But the description we have here is the way Isaiah saw heaven...and it's worth our time to learn everything God wants us to learn from it.
1. When Isaiah meets God in a vision, how does he see God?
Seated on a throne, high and exalted (sitting high and above). His robe fills the temple. He is holy and powerful, full of glory (which is brighter than looking into the sun).
2. Verse 2 talks about seraphim (which are angels).
What are these angels doing and saying?
Why do you think they are covering themselves?
They are flying around the throne with two wings. With two wings they are covering their eyes and with two wings they are covering their feet. They are saying that God is holy and almighty (powerful over all things) and the whole earth is filled with his glory (or bright presence). God is so bright and so holy that they have to cover themselves in his presence.
3. How does Isaiah respond? How do you think you would have responded if you saw and heard this?
He says, “Woe is me!” He sees how unclean he is compared to God. Normally people were not able to be in God’s holy presence and live. He’s afraid of being struck dead. Allow students to discuss their responses.
4. How is Isaiah able to stay in God’s presence and not be destroyed?
The angel brings a piece of coal from the altar and touches Isaiah’s lips, which cleans him and takes away his sin and his guilt. Notice, it does not say Isaiah was burned, but rather he was cleansed by fire.
5. How has our guilt been taken away and our sin “atoned for (been paid for)” as believers, allowing us to be in God’s presence?
Jesus was our payment; he has cleaned us and taken away our sin and guilt.
6. What does the Lord say to Isaiah in verse 8 and what is Isaiah’s response?
The Lord asks Isaiah, “Whom shall I send and who will go for us?”, meaning he is wanting someone to go as a messenger from God to the people. Isaiah asks God to send him.
HOW DO WE APPLY THIS TO OUR LIVES?
7. When you compare yourself to this holy God, would you consider yourself to be a pretty good person or unclean, like Isaiah? Why?
Allow the students to discuss.
8. If the only way for you to be with God is for you to be holy, how do you think you can become holy?
Answers will vary, but students need to understand that they need Jesus to cleanse them from their sin. They will never be able to be clean enough on their own.
9. When the angels were in God’s presence, all they could do was worship him. What do you think “worship” means?
Allow the students to discuss. Worship means to honor or show reverence for—to show respect or devotion to. These may be big words and hard concepts for your students, but don’t shy away from helping them define it in their words.
10. How do you think recognizing God’s holiness would help you to worship him more genuinely?
When we recognize how holy God is, and how small we are in comparison, we can’t help but respect and worship him. True worship is real and from the heart, not just a show of what you think worship means. Some people think worship is just singing songs at church, but God sees it as much more than that.
11. OK, so God is holy.
How does that impact your life?
If you really believed that this holy God is always with you, how would you want to live differently?
Allow the group to answer. Some elements you might want to bring out if they don’t might include… being more aware of their sin, a greater respect for God, a desire to live a life that honors God, a brokenness from their sin.
Pray together with your group, thanking him for being holy and asking him to give you the power to live lives that would please him. If you want, go around and let everyone pray. One person can start, then go around the circle letting everyone pray, and the last person ends the prayer. And if you feel they are up for it, have your students pray about their own desires to live holy lives.
Below are the groups. Below the blank lines are the less involved students. So the top group are the ones who will likely be there each week. The second group down are "maybe's" and the third group down will probably not come.