Scripture Text:(Click the Scripture text to open the text in a new window.)
1. Have you ever obstinately refused to do something merely because a certain person suggested it? What did that do for your relationship?
2. For what does the prophet rebuke the nation here? How might this attitude account for the Lord’s ridicule of idolatry in chapters 40 – 48?
3. Why has God gone to such lengths to announce this deliverance ahead of time (verses 5 and 6)?
4. Why does He bother to save them, anyway (see chapters 44:8 and 45:14)? If He had cut them off, what would the nations assume about God compared to the gods of Babylon?
5. The Jews (both before and during captivity) never gave up the worship of the Lord, but many added idolatrous practices to their Judaism. Where do you feel caught between relying on Christian doctrines yet living by the values of modern idols? How might God be getting across the message to you that you can’t have it both ways? What, if anything, do you want to change in order to honestly call upon the Lord in “truth and righteousness”?
6. How have you been influenced by the rebellious attitude of other Christians? How has your rebellion at times affected others? What has it cost you in terms of God’s peace and blessing in your life?
7. Since God saved the exiles anyway, does it really matter whether we try to obey God? How so?