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“Story of God” Reading Plan

Act 3: Kings & Kingdom

(Weeks 9 – 13)

Week 9


(Oct. 29 – Nov. 4)

Day 1:  Judges 2:1-23

Has there been anything in your life that you’ve held on to when you knew God wanted you to let it go? What was the result

What is the risk of not remembering what God has done in the past? What does it lead to?

Why do you think it was so hard for God’s people to continue to follow him even when he continued to rescue them?

Day 2:  1 Samuel 1:1-28

If you had been Hannah, what would you have felt about God in light of your situation?

Have you ever been in a situation where all you could do is cry out to God?

How do you typically respond when God does meet your needs? (thankfulness?, life just moves on?, worship?)

Day 3:  1 Samuel 3:1 – 4:11

How would you have reacted if you had been Samuel hearing God call your name in the night?

Have you ever heard God speak to you? Are there other ways you have experienced God? What kinds of things have you heard or experienced?

Why do you think Samuel is one of the only people that hears God? Does this have anything to do with the Israelites continually being defeated by the Philistines?

Day 4:  1 Samuel 7:3 – 8:21

How does Samuel lead the people in their desperation? What is the result?

Why do you think God doesn’t want the people to have a king?

How does God’s leadership in our lives differ from the way he describes a king ruling here?

Day 5:  1 Samuel 9:1 – 10:8

If you had been Saul, hearing Samuel tell you that you are the “focus of all of Israel’s hopes,” how would you have reacted?

Has God ever met you in a really unexpected way or when you weren’t looking for it? How did you respond?

Is there anything God is leading you to step out and do right now? Is there anything holding you back?

Extra Day:  1 Samuel 13:1-14

If you had been Saul, strong enemy in front of you and your people in fear and deserting, how would you have felt?

Have you ever felt like God was taking to long to come through and taken things into your own hands?

What is it about Saul that makes him less than a “man after God’s own heart”? Have you ever felt like that?

Week 10

King David

(Nov. 5 – 11)

Day 1:  1 Samuel 16:1-23

If you had been Samuel (God asking you to anoint a new king when Saul was still alive), how would you have responded?

When God tells Samuel he “doesn’t see things the way you see them,” what does he mean? How have you experienced this in your life?

What do you think is the importance of the Holy Spirit here (being with David and leaving Saul)?

Day 2:  1 Samuel 17:1-54

If you’ve heard this story before, did anything new jump out to you?

What’s the difference here between David and Saul? If you had been there, would you have challenged the giant?

What do you think allows someone like David to trust God even in the middle of impossible, life-threatening situations?

Day 3:  1 Samuel 18:1-16, 19:1-10

Why do you think Saul can’t stand seeing David succeed?

Have you ever had anyone in your life that it seemed like received more of God’s blessing or provision than you did? How did you respond?

What would you have done if you were Jonathan (caught between your love for your friend and the anger of your father, the king)?

Day 4:  1 Samuel 24:1-22

For years David has been in hiding, hunted by Saul. Would you have spared Saul’s life?

What do you think it was that made David show mercy?

Is there anyone in your life who has been hard to show mercy to? What would it take to trust God instead of your own justice (verses 12,15)?

Day 5:  2 Samuel 1:1-12, 5:1-5, 7:1-29

If you had been David (after all Saul had put you through), would you have been sad to hear of Saul’s death?

How do God’s promises to David here continue the promises he made to Abraham and Moses? How are they different?

What do you see in David’s prayer that show he is the right person to be King over God’s people?

Extra Day:  2 Samuel 11:1 – 12:14

How do David’s actions in this story reflect our own struggle with sin and temptation?

If you had been Nathan, having to go to the kind and call him out, would you have done it?

What do Davids confession and God’s response show us about how God deals with our sin?

Week 11

King Solomon

(Nov. 12 – 18)

Day 1:  1 Kings 1:28-40, 2:1-4

Why do you think David chooses Solomon (Bathsheba’s son) instead of his oldest to be king after him?

If you had been David, what advice would you have given your son before he became king?

Who in your life has encouraged or inspired you to continue on in your faith?

Day 2:  1 Kings 3:1-15, 4:20-34

If God had offered to give you anything like he did Solomon, what would you have asked for?

What is not about Solomon’s request that  causes God to grant it? What is the result of getting what he asked for?

Is there any need you have right now that God might be waiting to provide for if you asked?

Day 3:  1 Kings 5:1-18, 8:1-30

What do you think was the significance of the temple (and God’s presence filling it) for the people of Israel?

If the temple is a physical place that God’s presence fills, how does that fit with what Solomon prays in verse 8:27?

In the New Testament, Paul talks about our lives as the temple of God, are their areas of your life that you would like God’s presence to fill?

Day 4:  1 Kings 9:1-9, 11:1-13

What will be the result if Solomon and the people don’t continue to follow him? Why do you think God promises this punishment?

Have you ever had a time in your life when something drew you away from following God completely?

What do you think it takes to follow God consistently for a lifetime?

Day 5:  1 Kings 12:1-33

How is this story the result of all that God has been warning the people about since before they entered the land?

Even in the middle of their failure, how does God continue to show his desire to work his purposes through his people?

How has God shown up in your life even when you weren’t seeking him at all?

Week 12


(Nov. 19 – 25)

Day 1:  Isaiah 1:1 – 2:4

What specifically does God accuse his people of?

In the middle of all the destructive images, is there anything positive that might come from the punishment he’s describing? Has anything positive ever come from times in your life where you had to “reap what you sowed”?

How in the world would God people get from the destruction (in verses 1:1-31) to the hopeful picture in verses 2:1-4?

Day 2:  Isaiah 6:1-13

Have you ever had an experience where you clearly understood how great God was? What happened? How did it impact you?

How does Isaiah’s experience here set him up to be the right person to do what God is calling him to do?

Has doing what God calls you to do ever made other people more frustrated than they already were?

Day 3:  Isaiah 7:18-25, 8:11-22

Why do you think God’s people didn’t change the way they were living even when they got the clear warnings that their enemies were coming to destroy them?

How is Isaiah supposed to live/think differently than the people around him?

What common ways of thinking that are common in our culture might God want to shift us away from?

Day 4:  Isaiah 9:1-7, 11:1-16

God’s continues to show his commitment to fulfill his promises to David in spite of the people’s rejection. Have you ever experienced God’s desire to grow you even through your failure?

How is the leader God is promising to send going to be different that what we typically expect out of a strong leader?

What is the result of this “promised ones” leadership?

Day 5:  Isaiah 36:1 – 37:20

Have you ever had anyone insult your faith in God? What did they say/do? Did it increase your resolve to trust him or hurt it?

How does Hezekiah’s response differ from the ways God’s people have been described throughout this book?

What does God’s rescue of Jerusalem (see verses 37:36-38) in the middle of all the promised destruction (and real destruction of the Assyrian army) show about his desires for us?

Week 13


(Nov. 26 – Dec. 2)

Day 1: Jonah 1:1-16

What does it show us about God that he sent a storm and a fish after Jonah?

How are the sailors’ faith transformed through this experience? Why do you think that is?

Have you ever bought a ticket to go the opposite way of where you thought God was leading? What made you want to go the other way?

Day 2: Jonah 1:17 – 2:10

What does Jonah’s prayer show us about his trust in God?

How does Jonah’s situation here (in the depths of the seas) relate to the situation he’s supposed to be going to speak into (the darkness of Nineveh)?

What would your prayer have been from inside the fish?

Day 3: Jonah 3:1-10

How would you expect the people of this foreign capital city to respond to Jonah’s message?

What is the scope of Nineveh’s response to Jonah’s message? How does this compare to what we know of how Israel is relating to God in this time period?

Have you ever hoped that God would “change his mind” (verse 3:10) in relation to a situation you were in?

Day 4: Jonah 4:1-11

What does Jonah say is the actual reason he ran away in the first place?

Have you ever been angry that someone else didn’t “get what they deserved”?

Is there anyone in your life right now that God might ask, “Shouldn’t I feel sorry for them?”

Day 5: Hosea 11:1-11,  14:1-7

In contrast to Nineveh, how are God’s people responding to his message through the prophets (in this case Hosea)? What is the result?

What is God’s continued position toward Israel in these verses? What will He ultimately do and not do?

How have you experienced God’s continued compassion and restoration in your life even when you may not have been seeking it?