The Wisdom of living Hesed – Proverbs 3:3-4
This week’s teaching zeroed in on the kind of life rewarded by both the favor of God and of man. A proverb offering this:
Nothing can reward your life as a from-the-core expressing of God’s relentless love and reliability
Naturally, we all desire to have both favor from both the Lord and from those around us. However, such favor does not simply flow automatically. Rather, it is the result of a person – and so much better when it begins as a young person – who makes a personal commitment to be a living expression of the very love and faithfulness sourced in the heart and nature of God.
Is relentless loving and reliability toward God and others something that just happens naturally? If not, what does it take to become such a person, known for steadfast love and faithfulness? For Jesus to live strong in us, let’s explore this together.
OVERVIEW – What key “take away” did you glean from this week’s teaching?
Let’s get STARTED – What do you think?
- What tendencies do you think human beings are “born with”? Are they more self-centered or others centered? Explain and illustrate.
- What is your impression of God? Is He more self-focused, or others focused? [for example, what do we know about the life and interaction of the Persons of God in the Trinity? Is each of the three Persons of the Godhead more into their “own thing” or more focused on the other?]
- When you were growing up, did you learn to become less “me-focused” and more “others oriented”? If so, how did that happen? Who taught or mentored you in this?
Let’s Explore in the WORD - This week’s teaching explored 2 key qualities which “the son” was never to lose (or allow them to forsake him: steadfast love (Hebrew, “hesed”) and faithfulness (Hebrew, “emet” or reliability). These two terms are linked together in scores of Old Testament passages, and they make a powerful combination when they are expressed in the lives of people.
READ and THINK ABOUT Psalm 57 - What does God’s “steadfast love” and “faithfulness” mean to David?
How critical to David are these qualities in His God?
What do they produce in David’s heart and life?
EXPLORE in PROVERBS this combination – What do you discover in these verses?
Proverbs 11:17 “kind” = hesed ; Proverbs 16:6-7 ; Proverbs 20:6, 28 & 21:21; Proverbs 14:22; Proverbs 19:22-23; Proverbs 31:26 the teaching of kindness (hesed)
What are the situations we face in the course of living with others which are “teachable moments” for us and our kids, to learn how to express hesed and emet?
A WORD FROM THE PROPHETS - According to Micah 6:6-8, what is the LORD not looking for, and what is He looking for in His people?
SUMMARY – Discuss for a few minutes
(1) How would you describe, in your own words, the importance of exhibiting these two qualities as a disciple of the Lord Jesus?
(2) What role does depending on the Holy Spirit play in living hesed and emet?
(3) Do you think these qualities need more emphasis with young people?
Let’s Prioritize APPLICATION - Quite personally, how might these Christ-like qualities find a greater expression in your living? Any particular situations? With any particular people?
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