Bible Study on Parenting

I wrote this Bible study with prayer points for a Homeschool Moms’ retreat in 2005.

Watchmen: Ezekiel 33
“Give your people this message…”

1.      What is the watchman’s job (verses 2-3)?
2.      What is the responsibility of the people hearing his warning (verses 4-5)?
3.      When is the watchman responsible for the deaths of the people (verse 6)?
4.      Who was Ezekiel, the watchman for the people of Israel, to listen to (verse 7)?
5.      What warning did God give to Ezekiel for the people of Israel (verses 7-9)?
6.      What is God’s desire for the wicked (verse 11)?
7.      Do past sins destroy people or does past righteousness save them (verses 12-16)? What does God say will save or destroy people (verses 17-20)?
8.      What is the difference in the true repentance of verse 14, which is “to turn from sin and do what is right and just” and in “pretending to be sincere” with “no intention to obey”(verse 31)?

Application:
9.  Do I strive after true repentance in my own life and in the lives of my children?
10.  Am I listening to God’s voice (verse 7)?
11.  How do I warn my children of God’s justice and teach them the need for a change of heart , not just a change of action?
12.  What has God given me responsibility for?
13.  What are my children responsible for?
14.  What is God responsible for?

Shepherds: Ezekiel 34
“You are my flock, the sheep of my pasture.”

1.      How did the leaders of Israel, as shepherds, take care of themselves (verses 2-3)?
2.      How did they not take care of their sheep (verses 4, 8)?
3.      How did they rule (verse 4)?
4.      How did this lack of good shepherding affect the sheep (verses 5-8)?
5.      How does God shepherd his sheep (verses 11-16)?
6.      What are God’s promises for His people (verses 25-31)?
7.      What does God want people to know (verses 30-31)?

Application:
8.      What does God want me to know from this passage?
9.      How do I shepherd my children?
10.  How does God shepherd me?
11.  What keeps me from experiencing God as my shepherd?
12.  What keeps me from shepherding my children the way God desires me to?

Prayer Points

1.      Praise God as our shepherd: Praise God for His desire to seek and save those who are lost, for His care and protection, for His justice, and for His promises.

“He will feed his flock like a shepherd.  He will carry the lambs in his arms, holding them close to his heart.  He will gently lead the mother sheep with their young.” (Isaiah 40:11, NLT)

“I am the good shepherd; I know my own sheep and they know me.”(John 10:14 NLT)

2.      Pray for ourselves, both as watchmen and as shepherds for our children: Pray that we would listen to God’s voice and be faithful messengers of His messages/warnings. Pray that God would give us discernment to know when our kids are only pretending to be sincere, and how to address this area of true repentance with them. Pray that we would have tender, repentant hearts, and that we would grow both in our desire and in our ability to care for the flock that He has entrusted to our care.

“I will cause my people and their homes around my holy hill to be a blessing.  And I will send showers, showers of blessings, which will come just when they are needed.” (Ezekiel 34:26, NLT)
           
   Pray that our homes would be a blessing, and that we would receive God’s     abundant blessings when we need them!

3.      Pray for our children: to be responsive to warnings, to have repentant and sincere hearts, and to experience God’s peace and blessings that come from lifelong obedience to Him. Pray that our children would love God and experience Him personally!

“And I will give you a new heart with new and right desires, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony heart of sin and give you a new obedient heart.  And I will put my Spirit in you so you will obey my laws and do whatever I command.  And you will live in Israel, the land I gave your ancestors long ago.  You will be my people and I will be your God.” (Ezekiel 36:26-28, NLT)

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