The Gospel of Knowing For Sure

Luke 1:1–4

Sermon Notes

  1. A Promises-Kept Account, v.1
  2. An Eyewitness Account, v.2
  3. An Orderly Account, v.3
  4. A Certain Account, v.4

Reflection questions

  1. How did being an eyewitness to Jesus’s ministry impact the eyewitnesses? Cf. 2 Peter 1:16ff; Luke 9:28–36 (esp. v.33); Luke 5:8 (compare to Isaiah 6:5)
  2. How is Luke’s gospel not simply a series of stories about Jesus but also a series of Old Testament fulfillments? See Luke 1:1; 24:25–27, 44–49
  3. What are some of the things Luke wanted Theophilus (and all of us) to be certain of? See Luke 1:17, 77; 2:29–32; 4:18–19; 5:32; 9:20–22, 51; 19:10.

    Title taken from a chapter title in Phil Ryken’s commentary on Luke.

LukeChris KrychoMatt Giesman
5 Prayers for Forestgate: Greater Love for the GOSPEL

Romans 1:16–17

Sermon Notes

  1. The Gospel saves sinners from shame, v.16a
  2. The Gospel powerfully saves all believers, v.16b
  3. The Gospel reveals God’s righteousness, v17a
  4. The Gospel begins and ends with faith

Reflection questions:

  1. Compare Adam and Eve’s life before sin (Gen 2:25) with their life after sin (Gen 3:6–8). Now compare their life to Paul’s statements about life in the gospel in Romans 1:16 and Romans 5:1–5 (especially vv1, 5). What do you see about the presence of shame in their/our lives and about their/our relationship with God?
  2. Read Philippians 3:1–14. How did the gospel save Paul from his own arrogance, and how can it save you from your arrogance? Read 1 Tim. 1:12–17. How did the gospel save Paul from his own wickedness? (And how can it do the same for you?)
  3. How would you define faith in God? Read Romans 4:18–21 (about Abraham) or Hebrews 11:8–19 if you need help.
5 Prayers for Forestgate: Godly Leaders

1 Timothy 4:6–16

Sermon Notes

  1. The Value of Godly Training, vv. 6–10

  2. The Challenge for Young Leaders, vv. 11–12

  3. The Temptation for God’s Servants, vv. 13–16

Reflection questions:

  1. Based on the time you spend, what activity do you value the most? Based on the time you spend, which of these two do you value more: physical training or training in godliness?

  2. Have you ever looked down on someone because of their youth, in spite of their maturity? In what ways are you (whether you’re young or old) trying to set a Godly example for those around you?

  3. What temptation did Timothy appear to face? (See 1 Tim. 4:13) Can you think of any other servant of God who faced this temptation? (Jonah 4:1–4, esp. v.3, 1 King 19:9–10, Hebrew 10:24–25) What is our encouragement to serve God when we feel worn out? (Eph 2:10; Phil. 1:6; Col. 1:29; 1 Cor. 15:10).

5 Prayers for Forestgate: GUIDANCE

Proverbs 3:5–8

Sermon Notes

  1. Use your own understanding, but don’t lean on it. vv. 5b, 7a
  2. Trust with all your heart and know your God. vv. 5a, 6a, 7b
  3. Turn from evil to find straight paths.

Reflection questions:

  1. When you face difficult decisions, where is the first place you turn for advice? Pastors, friends, mentors, parents, others? Based on this passage, where do you think you should turn first for guidance?
  2. Do you ever doubt that God will give you the answers you need to your problems? Do you ever doubt that God will give you those answers on time? When we doubt like that, what attribute(s) of God are we denying? (See Ps. 119:65, 66, 68)
  3. Does God promise that we will never experience hardship if we trust in Him? (cf. 2 Tim. 3:12) Does God promise that His path will generally turn out better than sin and rebellion against His path? (See Prov 3:7–8) Can God also redeem us in spite of our sinful choices? (cf. 1 Tim. 1:15; Heb. 7:25; Galatians 1:13 and 2:20)
Chris Krycho
5 Prayers for Forestgate Growth

Acts 2:42–47

Sermon Notes

  1. Growing in worship
  2. Growing in fellowship
  3. Growing by God’s Grace, v.47b

Reflection questions

  1. James Montgomery Boice writes (of Acts 2:42): “The closer men and women come to God the closer they want to get to where he speaks to their hearts, and that is in the Bible.” Is your devotion to God’s Word growing noticeably stronger, or is it the opposite?
  2. Can you grow in love for God and (at the same time) not grow in love for His body of believers? Consider the following: John 14:15; I John 4:20–21; I John 5:3; Eph. 3:20–21.
  3. In 1 Corinthians 3, Paul makes the same point as Acts 2:41, 47 – God alone must give growth to His church. But if God gives the growth, what are we supposed to do? Read 1 Corinthians 3:5–9 and 1 Cor. 9:19–27 to see Paul’s answer.
What Kind of CELEBRATION Will God's People Have?

Esther 9:20–10:3

Sermon Notes

  1. A celebration of rest and reversal
  2. A celebration so we remember
  3. A greater celebration they awaited and we have

Reflection Questions:

  1. What is something in your life right now that you are looking forward to finding some rest and relief from?
  2. What is a situation in the past in which you did receive rest and relief from it?
  3. How have you seen God provide for you in the past in a hard or trying time?
  4. Why are we so prone to forget the ways God has provided for us in the past?
  5. How has Christ guaranteed for us eventual freedom from our present struggles and trials?
What kind of VICTORY will God’s people experience?

Esther 9:1–19

Sermon Notes

  1. The Fear of an Overlooked God, vv. 1-4
  2. The Fulfillment of Godʼs Overlooked Word, vv. 5-16
  3. The Feasting of Godʼs Overjoyed People, vv. 11-19

Reflection Questions:

  1. God promised to preserve His people so that the seed of the woman could ultimately defeat the seed of the serpent (Gen 3:15), though He never promised that God’s people would be free from physical harm, including martyrdom. If God cannot ultimately protect us from physical harm, where is our comfort? (See Romans 8:18–39, especially vv. 18, 35, 38-39)
  2. The background of Esther 9 (especially vv.10, 15, 16) is found in 1 Samuel 15, where Saul was commanded to destroy King Agag, the ancestor of Haman the Agagite (see Esther 2:5; 9:24; 1 Sam 15:3, 8). What was Saul’s sin? What did God mean when he said, “to obey is better than sacrifice”? (See 1 Samuel 15:17–23)
  3. Are feasts simply a time to look back on what God has done? Or are they also a chance to look forward in anticipation of more blessings? Consider one thing Jesus said about the Lord’s Supper, which was both a transformation of the Passover feast and an anticipation of something great to come: Luke 22:17–18. (Also see Isaiah 25:6–9 and Revelation 19:6-9)
EstherChris KrychoMatt Giesman
What Kind of TIMING Will God Display?

Esther 8:1–17

Sermon Notes

  1. Favor and Riches, vv. 1–2
  2. Pleading and Respect, vv. 3–6
  3. Conundrums and Riddles, vv. 7–10
  4. Defense and Repayment, vv. 9–14
  5. Gladness and Rejoicing, vv. 15–17

Reflection Questions

  1. Are God’s people special? Special because of who we naturally are, or special because of something God has done? (See Dt. 7:7-8) Why has God chosen us, blessed us, or made us special? (See Gen 12:3; I Peter 2:9 – Focus on the word “that” which reveals the purpose behind God’s actions.)
  2. Read the Parable of the Persistent Widow (Luke 18:1-8). Compare and contrast this woman to Esther’s actions in Esther 8. What lesson is Luke 18 trying to teach us about our prayer life (see vv. 1, 5, 8) and about God’s disposition towards us (see v.8)?
  3. Despite Mordecai’s confidence that God would deliver (Esther 4:14), God does not tell his people how he will deliver them until Esther 8:11. Even then, God does not tell them directly; they only find out from the king’s 2nd edict. Read Deuteronomy 29:29; do we know everything there is to know about God? (cf. Rom. 11:33-36) Can we trust God even if we don’t know everything there is to know about God?
EstherChris KrychoMatt Giesman
What Kind of JUSTICE Will God’s People See?

Esther 7:1-10

Sermon Notes

One point for each verse:

  1. Same Song …
  2. … 3rd Verse
  3. Currying Favor
  4. Cutting to the Chase (Finally)
  5. Kingly Outrage
  6. Curtains for ‘the Enemy’
  7. The King Cools Off (maybe), while Haman Grovels
  8. Haman’s Groveling Backfires
  9. Harbona’s Helpful Cameo
  10. Poetic Justice and Propitiation –

Reflection Questions

  • Read Numbers 6:24-26 (the blessing/benediction of Aaron) and Psalm 67:1-5. Why has God blessed his people? (Considering reading the next question before you answer this one.)

  • Esther risks her life for the sake of her people. She gives a voice to the voiceless, help to the helpless. Is this merely a description of what happened, or is it an example the Bible wants us to follow (based on this passage AND the rest of Scripture)? Consider: Prov 31:8-9; Romans 15:1ff; Romans 5:6, 8. 

  • I once heard someone say: I want mercy for my sins, but I want justice for the sins of others. Does that describe the way you feel about sin? Read Mt 18:21-35 and see what Jesus has to say about this topic.