January 10, 2006



God wants relationships with us. Jesus died to bring down the barriers between us and God by providing a perfect sacrifice for the sins that separate us from our holy God. God accepts us into His holy presence on the basis of Jesusí sacrifice. God is also very concerned about how we relate to one another, especially within His kingdom.

In Luke 17 Jesus teaches about how God relates to us and how we in turn should relate to Him and one another. Just as our relationship with God is built on the good news of Jesusí death, burial and resurrection for our sins, our relationships with one another should be built on this gospel foundation of sacrifice and forgiveness. For most of us, this is easier said than done. It takes practice and the help of Godís Spirit. God guides us in living out His Word.


READ LUKE 17 and think about what each part is saying about our relationship with God and one another.

17:1-4 Forgiveness in Relationships

What kind of stumbling blocks damage our relationship with God and each other?

Why is sin so harmful to relationships and why is forgiveness so helpful?

17:5-10 Faith and Humility in Relationships

Why did the disciples ask for more faith when Jesus taught about the need to forgive ďseven times a dayĒ?

What do you make of Jesus description of faith?

How would you rephrase this in your own words?

Describe how a proper sense of being unworthy can help us relate to God and to others?

17:11-19 Faith and Gratitude in Relationships

Why didnít the nine bother to thank God?

Why is it significant that a Samaritan did?

Describe the effect that gratitude can have on our relationship to God?

How can gratitude to God help our relationships with others?

17:20-37 Faithfulness and the Future of our Relationships

Do you see any possible connection between how the image of searching for Jesus in the last days might relate to the servant waiting on his master in 17:5-10?

Describe what Jesus coming will be like (17:24). How can understanding the nature of Jesusí return help us to keep our spiritual focus keen and bright?

17:32 is one of the shortest yet most powerful verses in the Bible. Itís kind of frightening in a way but what are some positive benefits of taking Jesusí command about remembering Lotís wife seriously?

How do our own times mirror Jesus descriptions of the days of Noah and Lotís times? What are some healthy aspects of being aware of the dangers of our times?


Thinking about what we have read and discussed, how can these help us maintain healthy relationships with God and others:

expectation of Jesusí return


Paul Birston

January 2006©