Theme: A Choice of Faith
Scriptures: Ruth 1:1-22
Objectives: (From the D6 Fusion Sunday School Lesson Book)
Know: Ruth chose to leave her people and false gods to embrace her mother-in-law Naomi, the Israelites, and God Almighty.
Think: Have the mindset that others’ needs are as important as my own.
Do: Commit to God and serve those around us in need.
Notes and Questions:
C1 Dictionary: An act of selecting or making a decision when faced with two or more possibilities. https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/us/choice
C2 Calvinism: The best definition (after searching for nearly an hour, for I wanted a clear definition from a 5 point Calvinist) is determinism and compatibilism. So, it comes down to God’s exhaustive decreeing of everything, or God decreeing the circumstances and desires so that a person will freely choose something. In other words a choice has to have a cause. If there is a cause, there is one who is the causer. The problem is that people do resist (Luke 13:34, John 5:40, Acts 7:39, etc.). A Calvinist believes that humans can ONLY always choose to sin but see Matthew 7:11. Also, God commands Isaiah to reason with Him (Isaiah 1:18).
D1 Determinism, particularly exhaustive determinism, is spelled out in the Westminster Confession of Faith: God from all eternity did, by the most wise and holy counsel of his own will, freely and unchangeably ordain whatsoever comes to pass: yet so, as thereby neither is God the author of sin, nor is violence offered to the will of the creatures, nor is the liberty or contingency of second causes taken away, but rather established. (3.1)
E1 Explanation A
F1 Humans freely choose.
F2 This is based on a cause. There has to be some reason a person chooses A instead of B.
F3 A cause has to have a causer. This causer is God.
E2 Explanation B
F1 God decrees the circumstances.
F2 God decrees the highest and best choice.
F3 A person freely choose the highest and best choice.
C3 Reformed/Classical Arminianism
E1 It is necessary to divide the idea of free will into 2 things.
E2 First, in regards to everything except God and salvation.
F1 Free will is not necessarily making choices freely.
F2 Free will has the necessity of there is no coercion whether deterministic or compatibilistic views.
F3 The Bible teaches that we are slaves of sin and dead in sins.
G1 Ephesians 2:1-3 NKJV And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins, (2) in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience, (3) among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others.
G2 John 8:34 NKJV Jesus answered them, "Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin.
G3 Romans 6:6 NKJV knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin.
E3 Second, in regards to God and salvation
F1 No one seeks God. We are totally depraved and totally unable.
G1 Romans 3:10-11 NKJV As it is written: "There is none righteous, no, not one; (11) There is none who understands; there is none who seeks after God.
G2 Mark 10:18 NKJV So Jesus said to him, "Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God.
G3 Romans 3:12 NKJV They have all turned aside; they have together become unprofitable; there is none who does good, no, not one."
F2 God initiates salvation
G1 John 16:8-9 NKJV And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: (9) of sin, because they do not believe in Me.
G2 Acts 16:14 NKJV Now a certain woman named Lydia heard us. She was a seller of purple from the city of Thyatira, who worshiped God. The Lord opened her heart to heed the things spoken by Paul.
F3 Then we have a freed will and can resist or not resist God’s call to believe. Unless God frees the will, we cannot be saved.
C4 Back to the Sunday School Lesson. Choices have consequences.
B2 Ruth 1:1-5,
C1 Ruth 1:1-5 NKJV Now it came to pass, in the days when the judges ruled, that there was a famine in the land. And a certain man of Bethlehem, Judah, went to dwell in the country of Moab, he and his wife and his two sons. (2) The name of the man was Elimelech, the name of his wife was Naomi, and the names of his two sons were Mahlon and Chilion—Ephrathites of Bethlehem, Judah. And they went to the country of Moab and remained there. (3) Then Elimelech, Naomi's husband, died; and she was left, and her two sons. (4) Now they took wives of the women of Moab: the name of the one was Orpah, and the name of the other Ruth. And they dwelt there about ten years. (5) Then both Mahlon and Chilion also died; so the woman survived her two sons and her husband.
C3 Why would a famine force Elimelech’s family to leave Israel, while others stayed?
C4 How would this choice affect the family?
C5 Why did Elimelech’s sons marry Moabite women?
C6 Three husbands died. Why would God allow this to happen?
D1 The universe is under the curse of sin and its penalty--death. (Genesis 2:17, Genesis 3, Isaiah 24:5-6, Romans 8:20-22).
D2 There is a redeemer, the Messiah Jesus (Isaiah 47:4, Revelation 5:9).
D3 There is the promise of the curse removed (Revelation 22:3-5).
B3 Ruth 1:6-18,
C1 Why did Naomi decide to return home to Israel?
C2 Why did Naomi urge her daughter-in-laws to return to their people?
C3 Why did Orpah return but Ruth went with Naomi?
C4 Ruth 1:16-17, why was Ruth so determined to return with Naomi?
C5 What affect did these two choices have?
C6 How can we make wise choices?
C7 Some verses on wise choice.
D1 Hebrews 11:24-26 GNB It was faith that made Moses, when he had grown up, refuse to be called the son of the king's daughter. (25) He preferred to suffer with God's people rather than to enjoy sin for a little while. (26) He reckoned that to suffer scorn for the Messiah was worth far more than all the treasures of Egypt, for he kept his eyes on the future reward.
D2 1 Kings 3:5-10 GNB That night the LORD appeared to him in a dream and asked him, "What would you like me to give you?" (6) Solomon answered, "You always showed great love for my father David, your servant, and he was good, loyal, and honest in his relation with you. And you have continued to show him your great and constant love by giving him a son who today rules in his place. (7) O LORD God, you have let me succeed my father as king, even though I am very young and don't know how to rule. (8) Here I am among the people you have chosen to be your own, a people who are so many that they cannot be counted. (9) So give me the wisdom I need to rule your people with justice and to know the difference between good and evil. Otherwise, how would I ever be able to rule this great people of yours?" (10) The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for this.
C8 How do we help someone who is hurting so badly? (Meeting spiritual needs first, then safety, listening closely, food, clothes, housing, etc.).
B4 Ruth 1:19-22,
C1 Ruth 1:19-22 NKJV Now the two of them went until they came to Bethlehem. And it happened, when they had come to Bethlehem, that all the city was excited because of them; and the women said, "Is this Naomi?" (20) But she said to them, "Do not call me Naomi; call me Mara, for the Almighty has dealt very bitterly with me. (21) I went out full, and the LORD has brought me home again empty. Why do you call me Naomi, since the LORD has testified against me, and the Almighty has afflicted me?" (22) So Naomi returned, and Ruth the Moabitess her daughter-in-law with her, who returned from the country of Moab. Now they came to Bethlehem at the beginning of barley harvest.
C2 How was Naomi’s response to the people of Bethlehem typical of us today?
C3 Was the Almighty the cause all this sorrow?
C4 Was God punishing her?
C5 How was the time they arrived a blessing?
B5 How has life’s sorrows affect us?
B6 Who has helped us?
B7 How can we keep our faith is times of great sorrow and troubles?
B8 Next week:
C1 A good name
C2 Theme: Faithfulness is rewarded
C3 Scriptures: Ruth 2:1-23