"Life. On Purpose" Community Bible Reading Plan

Week 1: A New Beginning...But Better
Devotional

Daily Readings 
Day 1: Matthew 1:1-17 
Day 2: Matthew 1:18-25 
Day 3: Matthew 2:1-23 
Day 4: Matthew 3:1-17 
Day 5: Matthew 4:1-25

As you read through the daily readings for this week, reflect on the questions below.  
All the questions could apply in one way or another to each day’s reading, and you may find that they help you see a different side of Jesus’ identity and purpose when you ask them each day...
 ·        

Where do you see references to Abraham, David, or Moses – either their names explicitly stated, or in stories in these chapters that have similarities to their Old Testament stories?
What do you think Matthew is trying to communicate about Jesus by recording these particular episodes from his life?
What are some ways that already in these chapters, you see Jesus ‘bearing God’s image’?
What are some ways that you see Jesus already being revealed as “King” in these chapters? 
What have you read about Jesus that most makes your heart say, “Yes!”
What have you read about Jesus that most makes your heart say, “No!” or “I’m not sure about that...”. 

Take some time to talk to Jesus about this now in prayer.

Week 2: The Sermon on the Mount
Devotional

Daily Readings 
Day 1: Matthew 5:1-16 
Day 2: Matthew 5:17-48 
Day 3: Matthew 6:1-18 
Day 4: Matthew 6:19-7:12 
Day 5: Matthew 7:13-29 

As you read through the daily readings for this week, reflect on the questions below.  All the questions could apply in one way or another to each day’s reading, and you may find that they help you see a different side of Jesus’ identity and purpose – and yours! – when you ask them each day...·         
Where do you see Jesus turning a common social norm upside-down? ·         
Where do you see Jesus moving past external behaviours and cutting to matters of the heart?        
Where do you see Jesus showing his authority? ·        
Where do Jesus’ words cut most deeply to your own heart?

Week 3: Generous Authority
Devotional

Daily Readings
Day 1: Matthew 8:1-22
Day 2: Matthew 8:23-9:13
Day 3: Matthew 9:14-38
Day 4: Matthew 10:1-31
Day 5: Matthew 10:32-42

As you read through the daily readings for this week, reflect on the questions below.  All the questions could apply in one way or another to each day’s reading, and you may find that they help you see a different side of Jesus’ identity and purpose when you ask them each day...

In what ways do you see Jesus demonstrating his power and authority?
What words would you use to describe each person Jesus is using his authority for?
What does Jesus say about what it means to follow him?
Where do you most need to demonstrate his generous authority in your life?  Ask him to show you what that looks like?
As you consider Jesus’ call to “Follow me”, what do you find most compelling?  What holds you back?  Take a moment to listen to God, asking Him to speak into where you are at.

Week 4: Great Expectations
Devotional

Daily Readings 
Day 1:
Matthew 11:1-28 
Day 2:
Matthew 12:1-21 
Day 3:
Matthew 12:22-50 
Day 4:
Matthew 13:1-23 
Day 5:
Matthew 13:24-58   

As you are reading this week look out for the different groups of people and think about their reactions to Jesus and expectations of Jesus.
 
Consider your own reactions to Jesus.  Do you have your own expectations on things you’d like him to do (or not do) in your own life?  
Maybe like John the Baptist you have found yourself in an undesirable place or enduring difficult circumstances.  
Maybe it isn’t your fault and you are wondering why Jesus doesn’t rescue you?  Maybe you are wondering why it seems like Jesus has rescued others and not you even though you have served him well.  
John might have felt this way too.  
Maybe you have asked for a sign or a miracle and He hasn’t given you one.   
Maybe you don’t understand why Jesus is waiting so long to make things right. 
Use this section as an opportunity to talk to Jesus about your own expectations, and how He can keep you from “falling away”.

Week 5: Think Bigger
Devotional

Daily Readings   
Day 1: Matthew 14:1-36 
Day 2: Matthew 15:1-28 
Day 3: Matthew 15:29-16:12 
Day 4: Matthew 16:13 - 17:13 
Day 5: Matthew 17:14-27  

As you read through the daily readings for this week, reflect on the questions below.  All the questions could apply in one way or another to each day’s reading, and you may find that they help you see a different side of Jesus’ identity and purpose when you ask them each day...   
Where do you see Jesus revealed as a King of power, might, glory and authority in these chapters? 
Where do you see Jesus revealed as a Messiah who is a gentle, loving, suffering servant king in these chapters? 
God called Israel to both be blessed and be a blessing so...
How is God extending an invitation to you right now to be blessed by Him? 
How is God extending an invitation for you to be a blessing?
Imagine Jesus asking you the question, “Who do you say I am?” 
What have you been expecting Jesus to be or do for you in your life lately? How have you been susceptible to a narrow view instead of a BIG PICTURE view of Jesus’ purposes and the calling on your life? 
Talk to Jesus in prayer about that.

 

Week 7:Clash of the Kingdoms

Devotional

Daily Readings 
Day 1: Matthew 21  
Day 2: Matthew 22   
Day 3: Matthew 23  
Day 4: Matthew 24  
Day 5: Matthew 25    


As you read each chapter, use the following questions to guide your study:       
   
1. What are the identifying marks of those who are citizens of the Kingdom of God you can learn from Jesus’ example, his parables, his teaching and his criticisms of the Pharisees   
2. Who are the people Jesus welcomed as he taught?  What do they have in common—physically, spiritually? What can you learn about the qualities Jesus values in his followers from the ones He welcomed? 
3. Compare and contrast these to the qualities and values being attributed to and demonstrated by the Pharisees?  What attitudes and actions did the Pharisees resort to when their position and power was threatened?  What do you conclude was motivating the Pharisees to the way they were representing the kingdom of God?
4. When you reflect on these 5 chapters, how do you now define “righteousness”? 
5. Do you recognize any Pharisaical tendencies in yourself, especially in leadership roles or areas where you have power?  What brings that out in you?  
6. How will you respond to Jesus’ invitation to step into the power and reality of your identity as a citizen of the Kingdom of God today?  Make your response practical, specific, realistic and measurable.