Lesson 2

The Son

(Luke 5, Daniel 7, Matthew 4, 8, 16 & 17)
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Introduction: Who is Jesus? This is the most important question in life. Recall our discussion last week about Thomas worrying because he did not know the directions to the place Jesus was preparing for him in heaven? Jesus explained to Thomas that He was not talking about a map, He was talking about theology. In John 14:5-6 Jesus explains that He is the only way to heaven. Like Thomas, this is something we want to be sure we get right! Let's jump into our study of the Bible and learn more about Jesus!

  1. Roof Rats


    1. Read Luke 5:17. What does this suggest that the established religious teachers thought of Jesus? (It was worth the effort to travel to listen to Jesus. He was someone whose teachings were worth considering.)


      1. What do we learn about Jesus' power to heal? (It seems that the power to heal was not present at all times. Jesus healed through the power of God who determined when that power would be present.)


        1. What does this suggest about our attempts to heal sick friends and family? (The power comes from the Holy Spirit, and it is not always present. God is sovereign in all things.)


    2. Read Luke 5:18-19. Pretend that you were one of the friends who was carrying your quadriplegic friend to be healed. A big crowd has gotten there before you. What would you do? (Come back another day and get there earlier.)


      1. What kind of person thinks of climbing on the roof, ripping off the tiles to create a hole, and lowering a friend in front of Jesus?


      2. If you were speaking, would you appreciate these characters creating such a great distraction? Didn't anyone teach them manners? What about having respect for the property of others?


    3. Read Luke 5:20. What did Jesus see? (Their faith.)


      1. Contemplate this just a moment. I don't know the customs of the day, but I've got to believe that these guys were violating all sorts of rules of personal conduct and respect for private property. What does it teach us that of all the bad things Jesus could have noticed about them, what He sees is their faith?


        1. By the way, whose faith is Jesus referring to?


      2. Jesus says, "Your sins are forgiven." What do you think: is this what the friends were hoping to hear? (My guess is that they were hoping to have their friend healed of his disability.)


    4. Read Luke 5:21. Turns out that this is not a popular response at all. What troubles the established religious teachers? (They believe that only God can forgive sin.)


      1. Do you agree?


      2. Jesus is obviously not stupid. Why do you think He gave this unpopular answer? (Jesus wants the established religious leaders to consider whether He is the Messiah.)


    5. Read Luke 5:22-25. What should the religious leaders think about Jesus knowing their thoughts?


      1. What is the answer to Jesus' question about which is easier? (It is easy to say either one (although saying one would subject you to the death penalty, see Leviticus 24:13-16), but proving you had healed someone was a lot harder.)


      2. What point is Jesus making to the group? (He is the Messiah. He has authority on earth to forgive sins. As they know, only God has that authority.)


    6. Read Luke 5:26. What do you think the people concluded from this? Did they think Jesus was the Messiah?


      1. There are many Biblically illiterate people running around saying, "I think Jesus was a good man and a great teacher, but I don't believe He is God." After reading this story, what is your response to this kind of statement? (Jesus claimed to be God. Do good people lie? Do they make false claims? Generally, people who think they are god are lunatics. Jesus was either right or He was a fraud.)


  2. Son of Man


    1. Read Matthew 20:25-28. Who is Jesus calling the "Son of Man?" (Himself.)


      1. If Jesus wants His followers to believe He is the Messiah, why would He call Himself "Son of Man" as opposed to "Son of God?" (Read John 8:58-59. Recall the blasphemy law I referenced earlier? When Jesus clearly makes the claim to be God ("I Am"), the people decide to enforce the blasphemy law by stoning Him. Jesus had a strategic problem. He needed to tell the people He was the Messiah, yet that could get Him killed prematurely.)


    2. Read Daniel 7:13-14. What is being pictured in Daniel's vision? (The Second Coming. The Messiah coming in power to take His followers to heaven.)


      1. What name is the Messiah given here? ("Son of Man." Daniel says, "like a son of man.")


      2. Why do you think Jesus calls Himself the "Son of Man" all of the time? (This is His cunning way of saying, "I'm the Messiah" without having the crowd pick up stones and start throwing them His way.)


  3. Satan's Testimony


    1. Most Americans know the judicial rule about hearsay testimony. To be valid, statements have to be made in court so that they can be cross-examined to test their truth. Admissions against interest are an exception to the hearsay rule. These are statements that harm you. "Yes, I committed the murder" is an example. They are considered to be true statements because you normally do not admit something that would harm you. Let's read Matthew 4:1-4. Is Satan admitting that Jesus is the Son of God? (No. But, it is very interesting that Satan asks Him to prove that He is the Son of God. It sets the stage for the next temptations.)


    2. Read Matthew 4:8-10. Would Satan make this offer to you? Would he make it to anyone you know? Would he make this offer to a carpenter or a Bible teacher? (Why would Satan give away all of his assets? You would logically make this offer only if you were getting some great value in trade.)


      1. What was Satan hoping to get from this deal? (The fact that Satan makes this offer is an admission that Jesus is not just an ordinary person. If Jesus were God, it would make sense to offer this trade because Satan would then be "higher" than God. I think this is an admission by Satan that Jesus is God.)


    3. Read Matthew 8:28-29. What do these two demon-possessed men admit? (That Jesus is the Son of God, and that He will defeat them in the future!)


    4. Read Matthew 8:30-31. Who is speaking in this story, the men or the demons? (This makes clear that it is the demons who admit that Jesus is the Messiah and that He will triumph.)


  4. The Father's Testimony.


    1. Read Matthew 17:1-3. Who are Moses and Elijah? (We know these are prominent figures from the Old Testament who have gone to heaven. See 2 Kings 2:11 and Jude 9.)


      1. What does this suggest about the nature of Jesus?


    2. Read Matthew 17:5-6. Who is speaking? (God the Father in Heaven. He says that He is pleased with "My Son.")


  5. Your Testimony


    1. Read Matthew 16:13-14. What do you think about these answers? (They show that the people thought Jesus was special.)


    2. Read Matthew 16:15-16. How do you answer this question?


    3. Friend, the question Jesus put to His disciples is the question for you today. Do you believe that Jesus is the Son of the Living God? As Thomas was told, this is the key to heaven. Will you accept that key today?


  6. Next week: The Holy Spirit.

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