Each week we webcast Lord's Day Sabbath School at 10a, morning public worship at 11a, and p.m. singing and sermon at 2:30p (sermon at 3:30); and the Weds. Prayer Meeting at 6:30p

Thursday, April 22, 2021

2021.04.22 Hopewell @Home ▫ Luke 17:20–37

Read Luke 17:20–37

Questions from the Scripture text: Who asked Jesus what in Luke 17:20? What does Jesus say, instead of answering the “when” question? What won’t they say (Luke 17:21)? Why—what is the answer to the where question? To whom does He speak in Luke 17:22? What did He say they would desire to see? What would people say to them then (Luke 17:23)? What does Jesus say to do when they say this? What will the Son of Man be like in His day (Luke 17:24)? What must He do first (Luke 17:25)? By whom must He be rejected? Whose days will it be like in the day of the Son of Man (Luke 17:26)? What were they doing in both days (Luke 17:27)? Until what happened? Who else’s days were like that (Luke 17:28)? What suddenly happened to them (Luke 17:29)? What did these two events have in common? What is Jesus saying to those who are preoccupied with the “when” question about His return? What day does He say will be like these two days (Luke 17:30)? What kinds of things won’t be important in that day (Luke 17:31)? Whom should we remember (Luke 17:32)? Who will lose his life (Luke 17:33a)? Who will preserve his life (verse 33b)? What can’t we tell from where two people are, and what they are doing (Luke 17:34-36)? What do the disciples want to know about His return in Luke 17:37? How does Jesus explain that the location will be obvious when it actually happens?

The Pharisees ask when the kingdom of God would come (Luke 17:20). But they don’t have a clue what they’re asking. Jesus’s answer isn’t just that they wouldn’t know the kingdom of God if it hit them, but that it already has hit them, and they don’t know it: “the kingdom of God [i.e., the King Himself] is in the midst of them” (Luke 17:21). The kingdom was there, but the Pharisees couldn’t see it, because they weren’t prepared for it.

Then, there’ll be a day when the kingdom won’t be there. His disciples will wish that He was around (Luke 17:22), so much so that they might be easily suckered by people who use His return to manipulate them (Luke 17:23). But, they shouldn’t let themselves be taken in, because hiding His return will be like trying to hide lightning (Luke 17:24). So, know that just as Christ Himself had to suffer (Luke 17:25), His servants also must be willing to do so in the meantime (Luke 17:22). So, the disciples should be prepared for the days when they are all the kingdom that there is on earth.

As for the days when He does actually return, those are going to sneak up on those who live for this life. All but eight were destroyed in the days of Noah (Luke 17:26-27). All but four were destroyed in the days of Lot (Luke 17:28-30). And a quarter of them were destroyed even though among the “church” (Luke 17:32). So, don’t live for this life, because that’s how to be destroyed (Luke 17:33Luke 17:31). So, all succeeding generations should live like life in this world is ending momentarily.

After all, you might be in the same family (Luke 17:32) or even doing the same activities (Luke 17:34-36) and one will escape but the other be dead meat (Luke 17:37). 

What’s the theme that holds these sections of teaching together: it is far more important to be prepared by knowing Christ, belonging to Christ, and living for Christ than it is to know when the last day will be. The great day will only be “great” for you if you are Christ’s.

The main question must be not, “when is Christ returning?” but rather “is Christ everything to me?”

What are some ways that you can tell that Christ is everything to someone? How do these appear in your life?

Suggested Songs: ARP23B “The Lord’s My Shepherd” or TPH72A “O God, Your Judgments Give the King”


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