Slavery and Death
Topic: Expository Scripture: Exodus 21:1–21:32
The following study guide is to be used to discuss the Friday, January 25, 2019 sermon.
Introduction - God made all people in his image. Thus all people have inherent dignity and value. Human life is sacred. Thus when God called Israel to be his chosen people and holy nation, he gave them laws that reflected this dignity of human life. Exodus 21 may be a difficult text for modern readers. At first glance, it might be judged to be antiqued at best. God gives laws for slavery, capital punishment, and the famous “eye for an eye” laws. And yet behind these laws we find a deep concern for the just treatment of people made in God’s image.
READ Exodus 21:1-11
Application: Imagine someone criticized Christianity because of verses like this that seemed to condone slavery. How might you respond?
2. In what ways did these verses provide protection for slaves?
Application: Even in societies without a formal practice of slavery or servitude, we often see people treated differently based upon some class system (for example: nationality, religion, ethnicity, caste, etc). How should we as Christians relate to such people? What might that look like in Abu Dhabi? How about inside the church membership?
3. Gospel Connection: In what way was Jesus like a slave? In what way are we called to slavery as Christians?
READ Exodus 21:12-32
4. In what ways do we see the value of human life protected in these laws for ancient Israel?
Application: How might we as Christians uphold the value of human life?
5. Gospel Connection - In what way was Jesus’ death on the cross an expression of the “eye for an eye” law, but also a breaking of the law?