The practice of Lent can easily become routine and perfunctory. We can go through the motions without letting them touch our hearts or change our lives. This Bible study will help you take time to make sure that as you give up something, you will gain much more.
Lent is the church's season of preparation before celebrating the Resurrection. Ash Wednesday marks the first day of Lent, which begins 40 days before Easter (Sundays not included). The word lent comes from the Old English word for "lengthen," referring to the longer days of spring. Many Christians use Lent as a time of fasting, repentance, and spiritual discipline to prepare for Easter. It is a time set aside for reflection on Christ's suffering, sacrifice, and resurrection. In this study, in light of Christ's sacrifice, we're going to take a new look at a very old tradition, that of offering sacrifices to the Lord.
Pastor and writer Eugene Peterson paraphrases Matthew 6:1 this way: "Be especially careful when you are trying to be good so that you don't make a performance out of it. It might be good theater, but the God who made you won't be applauding." In this second session of the Lent series, your group will consider the motivation behind sacrifice.
Sacrifices vs. Great Commandments
Loving God and neighbor trumps sacrifice.
"You are not far from the kingdom of God," Jesus tells a teacher of the law after being asked about the greatest commandment. The teacher must have jumped out of his seat at that news from Jesus. We should sit up and take notice too! In this last session of the Lenten series, we're reminded that loving God and our neighbor is better, in God's eyes, than sacrifice.
Total number of pages—19