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Bible Study: Set apart in a world of sin

NASHVILLE (BP) – This weekly Bible study appears in Baptist Press in a partnership with Lifeway Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention. Through its Leadership and Adult Publishing team, Lifeway publishes Sunday School curricula and additional resources for all age groups.

This week’s Bible study is adapted from The Gospel Project curriculum.

Bible Passage: Joshua 7-8

Discussion Questions:

  • How do human beings typically evaluate the gravity of sin?
  • Why do we try to hide our sin, or think we can?
  • How should we view our sin in light of God’s wrath and judgment against Achan, his family and Israel?

Food for Thought:

The Lord won the battle of Jericho on behalf of His people, the Israelites. He collapsed the wall, handed the city to Israel to totally destroy, and required that all the precious metals be devoted for His use in the tabernacle.

He warned that if the Israelites did not honor this command, then destruction and trouble would come upon the disobedient and the entire camp. Against the backdrop of Israel’s faithful obedience at Jericho, Rahab’s faithful actions toward the spies, and the blessings of God’s reward, one man chose to transgress God’s command. And soon, his secret sin found him out because of its fallout and consequences for the entire nation.

We all have experiences that don’t make sense to us, moments far more complicated than cause-and-effect thinking allows, moments that challenge our attempts to categorize our lives. Even though life is more complicated than that, this doesn’t mean there aren’t moments when the truth of cause-and-effect applies. Joshua and Israel learned this with a rebuke from the Lord. He did not deceive them, and He wasn’t leading them into Canaan to destroy them. Achan stole that which was set apart for God. He disobeyed God’s command, and Israel was collectively experiencing the consequences.

God wants His people to pursue holiness, to be committed to living as His set-apart people in this world. And He loves us too much to allow us to settle for anything less.

While we should not view every negative experience in our lives as the direct result of sins committed, we would be wise to see them as an opportunity to examine our hearts and lives. They just might be a Father’s loving rebuke to His wayward child.

The Gospel Project

The Gospel Project is a chronological, Christ-centered study for kids, students and adults. The Bible is not a collection of stories. It is one story of God’s plan to rescue His people from sin and death. It is the story of redemption, the gospel message of Jesus Christ. More information can be found at Lifeway.com/gospelproject.

    About the Author

  • Staff/Lifeway Christian Resources