ICE BREAKER Can you recall something you did as a child that you knew was wrong but for which you thought no one would call you to account? What ended up happening?
Title: “The Lord Sees and Calls to Account” (a.k.a. Pulpits & Politics)
CONNECTING TO THE TEXT:
- How old was Uzziah (Azariah) when he became King? 2 Chr. 26:1
- How is Uzziah described and what seemed to be his best influences? 2 Chr. 26:4,5
- What led to Uzziah’s downfall? 2 Chr. 26:16,17
- How does Ezra the priest describe the priests that confronted Uzziah? 2 Chr. 26:18
- How did priests, prophets, and apostles handle confronting those in authority over them in regards to what is right and wrong? 2 Sam. 12:1-14; Dan. 4; Jn. 19:10,11; Lk. 12:11-12; 1 Pet. 4:12-16; Acts 4:19; 5:29. (Take note of the topic they were confronting the authority over, e.g. Jesus or paying taxes?)
- How does the Bible regard a difference between standing up for our own rights and standing up for the rights of others? Mt. 5:38-48; Zech. 7:8-12
CONNECTING TO OUR LIVES:
1. What are the current laws of the U.S. regulating what a Preacher/Church can and can’t say?
- 1st Amendment Constitutional rights and limitations for religious organizations.
- Current IRS laws for religious organizations.
- Candidate/Political party support by religious organizations.
2. What are two extremes of Christian opinion regarding the Church’s involvement in Politics?
3. List some topics that might be regarded as political, but are rooted in biblical teachings? (Scriptural - Political Issues)
4. How might a sense of entitlement lead a person to assume more authority than appropriate?
5. What are the 45 goals of the Communist Party established in 1958 in effort to weaken the American society?
6. Good resources regarding a Christian Worldview and politics.
- Proclaim Liberty Throughout All the Land: A History of Church and State in America (Religion in American Life), by Edwin S. Gaustad (Book)
- When a Nation Forgets God, by Erwin W. Lutzer (Book)
- Politics, Taxes, and the Pulpit, by Nina J. Crimm, Laurence H. Winer (Book)
- Church, State and Public Justice, by Clark E. Cochran, Drek H. Davis, Ronald J. Sider, Corwin Smidt and J. Philip Wogaman (Book)
- Moral Man And Immoral Society: A Study In Ethics And Politics, by Reinhold Niebuhr (Book)
- The 5,000 Year Leap, by W. Cleon Skousen (Book and DVD lesson series)
- Political Theology (Journal)
- Churches, Elections, and the IRS, by Mark Roberts (Extensive Blog)
- Religious Right Watch: (Website)
- GovTrack.us (Website)
- Family Research Council: (Website)
- The Heritage Foundation: (Website)
- Chronwatch America: (Website)
- American Center for Law & Justice (Website)
- Citizen Link (Focus on the Family): (Website)
- Wall Builders: (Website)
CONNECTING TO THE CHURCH:
1. What might a “Preacher’s Core Values of My Preaching/Teaching Ministry” look like? (Core Values of My Preaching 2) Proposed Guidelines for Balancing a Political Presence in the Pulpit
2. What would you classify as indicators that a church has gotten too political?
3. What would you classify as indicators that a church has forsaken it’s role to hold the government accountable to Scriptural principles?
Title: “The Lord’s Jealousy & Pity”
Text: Joel - (especially Joel 2:18)
- What had the nation of Israel done?
- What had God done? What was He going to do?
- What would you have done?
- What will you do?