Tip: You may also offer for participants to share prayer requests on index cards. Not only does it provide a private way for participants to share requests, it also is a great way for you to remember how to pray for your group during the week.
The second story in the Bible describes two trees from the Garden of Eden: the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil and the Tree of Life. It is the second story because everything in our Christian lives is filtered through the idea of the two trees. God gave Adam and Eve the choice between the two trees. We have the choice to filter our lives through one tree or the other. The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil says, “You must do more to get to God.” It keeps us stuck trying to get God’s approval. The Tree of Life says, “Receive the fact that Jesus already loves you.” Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil thinking causes us to obey out of duty rather than obeying out of delight as we do in Tree of Life thinking.
There are four responses that will help us filter our lives through the Tree of Life:
As they read the lesson for Week 2 this week, encourage your participants to look for ways they might act and react based on Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil thinking. Ask them to be prepared to share some examples next week if they are comfortable.
Dear Jesus, Thank You for dying on the cross and making a way for me to come to God. I receive this extravagant gift and ask You to come into my heart and be the Lord of my life. I give You all of me and ask You to turn my life around for Your glory. Fill me with Your Spirit, and help me live the life You died to give me. In Jesus name, Amen.
“Now the Lord God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden; and there He put the man He had formed. And the Lord God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground—trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food. In the middle of the garden were the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil… And the Lord God commanded the man, ‘ You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.”_ GENESIS 2:8–9, 16–17 NIV
________ to get to God.
Receive the fact that Jesus has already __________.
You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the >very Scriptures that testify about me, yet you refuse to come to me to have life. JOHN 5:39–40 NIV
Keep trying to get _________ .
Receive the fact that He ________ .
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. ROMANS 5:8 NIV
The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil says: The Tree of Life says:
This is love for God: to obey His commands. And His commands are not burdensome. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life. 1 JOHN 5:3,12 NIV
“If you love me, you will obey what I command.” JOHN 14:15 NIV
“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets. I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.” MATTHEW 5:17 NIV
“Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” ROMANS 8:1 NIV
“This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live.” DEUTERONOMY 30:19 NIVPrint Lesson
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