El Shaddai, June 1-7

 

Outline

 

Name: El Shaddai = Almighty, all-powerful

 

Story: Contest on Carmel, 1 Kings 18:17-39

 

             Who causes trouble?

 

      How long will you waver?

 

      Standing alone in the minority

 

      Sincerity does not make something true

 

      Elijah’s preparations and prayer; handicapping God

 

      God’s fire and the people’s response

 

Jesus Christ is pantokrator (El Shaddai), Revelation 1:8

 

 

Group Discussion Questions

  1. How do people today mix superstition, magical thinking or rituals with true Christianity?
  2. What does the name “El Shaddai” mean?
  3. What is the background to the contest on Mount Carmel? What are some of the human, political and religious dynamics at play?
  4. Of what did Elijah challenge his people (1 Kings 18:21)? How do we do a similar thing today? Give some examples.
  5. How did the prophets of Baal show their sincere faith? What does sincerity have to do with truth? Does it matter what god you believe in as long as you show sincere faith?
  6. How would you contrast Elijah’s prayer with the prayers of the prophets of Baal?
  7. How does God respond? And how do the people respond to God in contrast to their initial position?
  8. How does Jesus Christ relate to the title El Shaddai (See Revelation 1:8)?
  9. How could we properly respond to the reality that God/Jesus is El Shaddai?

 

Family Discussion Questions

  1. Read 1 Kings 18:19-39 out loud as a family. What’s your first reaction to this story? What word(s) would you use to describe God in this story?
  2. What name did we discover in Bruce’s message to describe God? What words would you use to describe El Shaddai? How does God demonstrate his power and his sovereignty today?
  3. What question does Elijah ask the people of Israel in verse 21? Who was Baal? Could Elijah’s question also be asked of us?
  4. Are there false gods in your life? What are they and how are you tempted to worship them?
  5. How did Elijah prepare for the sacrifice (verses 30-35)? What strikes you about his preparations?
  6. What did God do? What did he prove? What was the people’s response to God’s mighty show of power?
  7. How have you seen God’s power at work in your life?
  8. How does knowing that God is sovereign and master of everything affect how you relate to him? What idols (people, things, money, time, etc.) can you give back to God as a next step in growing to be like Jesus?

 

 

 

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