Choose two or three designated readers for the night. The group leader will call on them to read the suggested passages.

Please print off enough questions for individuals in your group to have in front of them.

If you could talk about one point from the sermon this evening what would it be?

Jacob's Body is Taken to Canaan

Jacob’s Body is Taken to Canaan, by James Tissot, c. 1902

Read Genesis 49:29-33

Why does Jacob deeply desire to be buried in Canaan? Craft your answer making use of the covenant with Abraham.

The original audience of Genesis was the Exodus community heading toward Canaan from Egypt. They are the fulfillment of Jacob’s deep longing for the fulfillment of God’s promise of land. Why would this story of Jacob’s burial help them to realize that they were a special people living in a special time?

Read Exodus 19:1-6

little-ann-sucking-her-finger-embraced-by-her-mother-1897.jpg!Blog

Little Ann Sucking Her Finger Embraced by Her Mother, by Mary Cassatt 1897

God’s covenanting people are said to be God’s treasured possession.

To what extent do you grasp how special the Church is to Jesus Christ?

Priests, in the Old Testament, were to bring God to the people and the people to God.

As a “kingdom of priests” how were these special people to function in relation to their national neighbors?

Do special roles and service always go together where you live, work and play? For example: is it the teacher’s pet who is also expected to be the servant of all the other students?

Read Deuteronomy 9:4-6

Does God account for our sinfulness when he affirms that we are special to him?

How does Oprah Winfrey (or cultural figures similar to her) typically affirm that people are special? How is sin affirmed or not affirmed by those figures?

We are also special because of the time in which we lived. Our people have longed for millennia when the age of the Messiah would come. That is the time we now are in.

Read Hebrews 9:23-28

How does the author to the Hebrews refer to the time in which we are living?

What promises to the people of God have been fulfilled, according to this passage?

christ-as-a-clock-1957.jpg!Blog (1)

Christ as a Clock, by Marc Chagall, 1957

What promise are we still awaiting to be fulfilled in the future?

Do you live with an awareness of living at such a special time?

Do you sense any competition with that awareness? For example, do you feel more special because you are living in the technological age than because you are living in the “end of the ages”? Do you feel more special because you get to participate in the age of America or the age of the fulfillment of God’s promises to Abraham? Others?

What practices or habits in your life are serving to fuel Christ’s competition?

How does attending this Care Group help you to know your specialness to God, to the world and the specialness of the time in which you live?

What other practices in your life serve to further your appreciation for the specialness of being in Christ?