Congregation Bible Study ‒ Week Starting March 2

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Study information for the book: Draw Close to Jehovah

cl chap. 21 ¶1-8 (30 min.)


CHAPTER 21

Jesus Reveals the “Wisdom From God”

1-3. How did Jesus’ former neighbors respond to his teaching, and what did they fail to recognize about him?

THE audience was stunned. The young man Jesus was standing before them in the synagogue and teaching. He was no stranger to them—he had grown up in their city, and for years he had worked among them as a carpenter. Perhaps some of them lived in houses that Jesus had helped to build, or maybe they worked their land with plows and yokes that he had made with his own hands. But how would they respond to the teaching of this former carpenter?

2 Most of those listening were astounded, asking: “Where did this man get this wisdom?” But they also remarked: “This is the carpenter the son of Mary.” (Matthew 13:54-58; Mark 6:1-3) Sadly, Jesus’ onetime neighbors reasoned, ‘This carpenter is just a local man like us.’ Despite the wisdom in his words, they rejected him. Little did they know that the wisdom he shared was not his own.

Matthew 13:54-58 coming into his home territory, he began to teach them in their synagogue, so that they were astounded and said: “Where did this man get this wisdom and these powerful works? 55 Is this not the carpenter’s son? Is not his mother called Mary, and his brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? 56 And his sisters, are they not all with us? Where, then, did he get all of this?” 57 So they began to stumble because of him. But Jesus said to them: “A prophet is not without honor except in his home territory and in his own house.” 58 And he did not perform many powerful works there on account of their lack of faith.
Mark 6:1-3 He departed from there and came into his home territory, and his disciples followed him. 2 When it was the Sabbath, he started teaching in the synagogue, and most who heard him were astounded and said: “Where did this man get these things? And why should this wisdom have been given to him, and such powerful works be performed through his hands? 3 This is the carpenter, the son of Mary and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas, and Simon, is it not? And his sisters are here with us, are they not?” So they began to stumble because of him.
3 Where did Jesus get this wisdom? “What I teach is not mine,” he said, “but belongs to him that sent me.” (John 7:16) The apostle Paul explained that Jesus “has become to us wisdom from God.” (1 Corinthians 1:30) Jehovah’s own wisdom is revealed through his Son, Jesus. Indeed, this was true to such an extent that Jesus could say: “I and the Father are one.” (John 10:30) Let us examine three areas in which Jesus manifested the “wisdom from God.”
John 7:16 in turn, answered them and said: “What I teach is not mine, but belongs to him who sent me.
1 Corinthians 1:30 it is due to him that you are in union with Christ Jesus, who has become to us wisdom from God, also righteousness and sanctification and release by ransom,
John 10:30 and the Father are one.”

What He Taught

4. (a) What was the theme of Jesus’ message, and why was that highly important? (b) Why was Jesus’ counsel always practical and in the best interests of his listeners?

4 First, consider what Jesus taught. The theme of his message was “the good news of the kingdom.” (Luke 4:43) That was highly important because of the role the Kingdom would play in vindicating Jehovah’s sovereignty and in bringing lasting blessings to mankind. In his teaching, Jesus also offered wise counsel for everyday living. He proved himself to be the foretold “Wonderful Counselor.” (Isaiah 9:6) Indeed, how could his counsel be anything but wonderful? He had a profound knowledge of God’s Word and will, a keen understanding of human nature, and a deep love for humankind. Hence, his counsel was always practical and in the best interests of his listeners. Jesus uttered “sayings of everlasting life.” Yes, when followed, his counsel leads to salvation.—John 6:68.
Luke 4:43 he said to them: “I must also declare the good news of the Kingdom of God to other cities, because for this I was sent.”
Isaiah 9:6 a child has been born to us,A son has been given to us;And the rulership will rest on his shoulder. His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.
John 6:68 Peter answered him: “Lord, whom shall we go away to? You have sayings of everlasting life.

5. What were some of the subjects that Jesus covered in the Sermon on the Mount?

5 The Sermon on the Mount is an outstanding example of the unparalleled wisdom found in the teachings of Jesus. This sermon, as recorded at Matthew 5:3–7:27, would likely take only 20 minutes to deliver. Its counsel, however, is timeless—as relevant today as when it was first given. Jesus covered a wide range of subjects, including how to improve relations with others (5:23-26, 38-42; 7:1-5, 12), how to keep morally clean (5:27-32), and how to live a meaningful life (6:19-24; 7:24-27). But Jesus did more than just tell his listeners what the course of wisdom is; he showed them by explaining, reasoning, and offering proof.
Matthew 5:23-26 then, you are bringing your gift to the altar and there you remember that your brother has something against you, 24 leave your gift there in front of the altar, and go away. First make your peace with your brother, and then come back and offer your gift. 25 “Be quick to settle matters with your legal opponent, while you are with him on the way there, so that somehow the opponent may not turn you over to the judge, and the judge to the court attendant, and you get thrown into prison. 26 I say to you for a fact, you will certainly not come out of there until you have paid over your last small coin.
Matthew 5:38-42 heard that it was said: ‘Eye for eye and tooth for tooth.’ 39 However, I say to you: Do not resist the one who is wicked, but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other also to him. 40 And if a person wants to take you to court and get possession of your inner garment, let him also have your outer garment; 41 and if someone in authority compels you into service for a mile, go with him two miles. 42 Give to the one asking you, and do not turn away from one who wants to borrow from you.
Matthew 7:1-5 “Stop judging that you may not be judged; 2 for with the judgment you are judging, you will be judged, and with the measure that you are measuring out, they will measure out to you. 3 Why, then, do you look at the straw in your brother’s eye but do not notice the rafter in your own eye? 4 Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Allow me to remove the straw from your eye,’ when look! a rafter is in your own eye? 5 Hypocrite! First remove the rafter from your own eye, and then you will see clearly how to remove the straw from your brother’s eye.
Matthew 7:12 things, therefore, that you want men to do to you, you also must do to them. This, in fact, is what the Law and the Prophets mean.
Matthew 5:27-32 heard that it was said: ‘You must not commit adultery.’ 28 But I say to you that everyone who keeps on looking at a woman so as to have a passion for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29 If, now, your right eye is making you stumble, tear it out and throw it away from you. For it is better for you to lose one of your members than for your whole body to be pitched into Ge•hen′na. 30 Also, if your right hand is making you stumble, cut it off and throw it away from you. For it is better for you to lose one of your members than for your whole body to land in Ge•hen′na. 31 “Moreover, it was said: ‘Whoever divorces his wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce.’ 32 However, I say to you that everyone divorcing his wife, except on account of sexual immorality, makes her a subject for adultery, and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.
Matthew 6:19-24 storing up for yourselves treasures on the earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal. 20 Rather, store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. 22 “The lamp of the body is the eye. If, then, your eye is focused, your whole body will be bright. 23 But if your eye is envious, your whole body will be dark. If the light that is in you is really darkness, how great that darkness is! 24 “No one can slave for two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will stick to the one and despise the other. You cannot slave for God and for Riches.
Matthew 7:24-27 everyone who hears these sayings of mine and does them will be like a discreet man who built his house on the rock. 25 And the rain poured down and the floods came and the winds blew and lashed against that house, but it did not cave in, for it had been founded on the rock. 26 Furthermore, everyone hearing these sayings of mine and not doing them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. 27 And the rain poured down and the floods came and the winds blew and struck against that house, and it caved in, and its collapse was great.”

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