Hidden In Plain Sight
Jesus Before Bethlehem | Week 3
September 24, 2023 | By Jim Burgen
Have you ever wondered what Jesus was up to before we read about Him in Bethlehem? Today, Jim uncovers multiple moments when Jesus appeared in the Old Testament, and it's not what you think. Why does this matter to us? Because Jesus is so much bigger than what we've reduced Him down to.
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Jesus Before Bethlehem
Sep 24th, 2023
// Bible References
Gen. 1:1-2, 3:8-13, 15:3-6, 16:7-13; 22:9-12; Ex. 3:2-6,13-14, 23:20-22, Josh. 5:13-15; Dan. 7:13-14; Matt 26:63-68; John 1:14, 8:56-59, 17:3; Eph 6:10-12; Phil. 2:6-8; Col. 1:15-17; Heb 13:8; 1 Peter 1:19-21; Jude 1:5
// Community Question
What is your favorite Jesus story in the Bible? Share why it stands out to you with your group.
// Discussion Questions
- Read Genesis 16:7-13. Pastor Burgen shared that Jesus appeared as the Angel of the LORD in the Old Testament, having encounters with Abram, Hagar, Moses, and Joshua. How does understanding Jesus' appearances in the Old Testament as the Angel of the LORD affect your view of His role in the Bible? What are some other Old Testament stories that you believe Jesus may have had a direct involvement in, and why?
- Read Joshua 5:13-15. The sermon discussed Jesus' various roles and emphasized His authority and involvement in creation, redemption, and leading God's people. How does recognizing Jesus as creator, the glory of God, and the commander of the army of the Lord impact your view of His authority and power? In what ways can you actively submit to Jesus' authority in your everyday life?
- Read Hebrews 13:8. Pastor Burgen reminded listeners that Jesus' nature remains constant throughout history. What does it mean to you that Jesus is the 'same yesterday, today, and forever? How can relying on this consistency of Jesus help you navigate personal challenges or uncertainties?
- The sermon emphasized that Jesus' mission was to seek and save the lost, defend and guide the broken, and provide forgiveness and grace. How can focusing on Jesus' mission and loving others change our perspective when dealing with difficult people or situations? Can you think of a situation in your own life where loving others could have helped you respond more graciously?
- Read John 17:3. Pastor Burgen encouraged listeners to trust Jesus for salvation, forgiveness, and a new life. What does it mean to you, to trust in Jesus as Lord and Savior? What are some areas in your life where you may be struggling to trust Jesus and allow Him to work in your heart?
// Challenge: How can we impact the world by loving others enough to tell them about Jesus this week?