Introduction: On Easter weekend I began writing this lesson.
Such unfathomable love God has shown us! Recall that last
week we studied the war in heaven and the conflict between
God and Satan over the allegiance of Adam and Eve? How was
Satan doing at that time against God? We discussed that
Satan was doing pretty well. He convinced a third of the
angels and both humans to follow him. If you were God, what
would you do? Would you power through this problem by
destroying Satan and his followers? Or, would you sacrifice
Yourself? Astonishing to the human mind is that God decided
to sacrifice Himself. Thus, God staked out love as His
weapon. Let’s jump into our study of the Bible and learn

I. He Wept

A. Read Luke 19:36-38. Jesus is riding in triumph
into Jerusalem. What do the people mean by calling
Jesus “the King who comes in the name of the
Lord?” (The are calling Jesus the Messiah. The
people of Jerusalem are calling Him the expected
Messiah and King.)

B. Read Luke 19:39-40. What does Jesus mean when He
says that the stones would cry out? What would
cause that to happen? (Jesus is saying that
praise would come from supernatural sources. Jesus
confirms that He is the Messiah.)

C. Read Luke 19:41-42. Jesus refers to the “you” who
should have known what makes for peace. Who is
that you? (The citizens of the city.)

1. What “peace” is Jesus speaking about? Peace
with the Romans?

D. Read Luke 19:43-44. When Jesus speaks of the
“visitation,” is He referring to the Romans
attacking Jerusalem? The Jews did not know when
that would happen. (No. Jesus says they did not
recognize Him and realize that He was the Messiah!
The stones recognized it, but God’s people did
not. This is not about the Romans.)

E. Let’s go back to Luke 19:38. Notice the reference
to “peace in heaven.” How is Jesus bringing peace
in heaven? (Think about our discussion last week.
Jesus’ act of giving up Himself not only won the
conflict on earth, it settled the issue in the
minds of all those in the universe.)

F. Let’s go back to Luke 19:41. If someone rejected
you, would you weep about it or would that make
you angry? (Jesus shows His love by crying over
the coming loss of His people.)

G. Look again at Luke 19:43-44. Who is doing the
destruction? (“Enemies.” Satan is behind this
attack on the Jews.)

1. How does that work? Jesus has love for His
people, but Satan destroys them – even
children. Why? (The people rejected Jesus and
therefore rejected His protection.)

H. Read Matthew 24:15-20. Who is Jesus acting to
save? (The Christians who are listening to Him.
Those who believe. Eusebius and Epiphanius, who
were fourth century Church fathers, report that
Christians in Jerusalem saw a chance to leave
after the Roman siege began. Following Jesus’
instruction they left the city and all were

I. Read Acts 1:6. Jesus’ disciples asked Him this
question as He was in the process of ascending to
heaven. What did they think about the future of
Jerusalem? (They obviously did not understand the
future of Jerusalem.)

J. Let’s talk about the texts we discussed to find
the deeper picture. What is Satan’s strategy in
this? (Satan first persuades most of God’s people
to reject Jesus as the Messiah – even though
nature (the stones) knew it.)

1. What is Satan’s second strategy? (To destroy
those who have chosen him. To seal their fate

2. The temple has never been rebuilt. Why does
that serve Satan’s purposes? (It is terribly
discouraging and confusing to the descendants
of Abraham who have not accepted Jesus as the

3. Why would God allow such terrible destruction?
Is this a simple act of vengeance by God? (How
could it be? We read about Jesus weeping over
the future of the temple and His people! After
Jesus lived a perfect life, died in our place,
and was resurrected to heaven the temple no
longer served any purpose. Satan wanted to
destroy where God used to have His presence
and God let him.)

4. Part of the title of our lesson is “love or
selfishness?” Aside from what Satan is doing,
is any other selfishness visible in this
story? (Read Luke 19:47. The Jewish leaders
sought to destroy Jesus because He was
challenging their religious rule. They could
not accept that God would act on their behalf
by giving up Himself. Even Jesus’ disciples
thought that they would be rulers, not be
facing hostile crowds the rest of their lives.
The leaders selfishly rejected Jesus.)

a. Are we like the Jewish leaders? Do we
reject the call of Jesus because we
foolishly believe our life will be better
without Him?

II. They Loved

A. Read Acts 2:42-44. Why would they have “all things
in common?”

B. Is holding property in common the rule of the
Bible? Read Deuteronomy 19:14 and Leviticus 25:13-17.
What do those texts teach us about private
property ownership?(The Old Testament is filled
with rules about private property rights.
Leviticus 25 shows that God placed a very high
priority on people retaining their property.)

C. Read Exodus 20:17. What does this teach us about
property? (You should not contemplate taking the
property of your neighbor!)

D. How do we explain the unusual behavior in Acts
chapter 2?

E. Read Acts 2:5, Acts 2:41 and skim the first forty-
three verses of Acts 2. How many new people do we
have in town? (There are many visitors for
Pentecost who are converted and who stay to learn
more about Jesus.)

1. How are those people going to afford an
unplanned extended stay in Jerusalem?

F. Read Acts 2:45-47. Does this help you make sense
of this new and unusual practice in the very early

G. Read Acts 4:32-35. We now see that there is more
to the story. Is this still an “emergency”
situation? (It was still a new situation, but it
seems to have gone beyond people who were visiting
for Pentecost and felt compelled to stay to learn
more about their new faith.)

H. Read Acts 5:3-5. This is a sad story about a
couple who wanted to look more generous then they
were – and are willing to lie about it. What moral
principle does Peter lay out in these verses?
(This couple had the complete moral and legal
right to keep their own property. What they could
not do was to lie about their generosity.)

1. What principles would you draw from what we
read in the first chapters of Acts in living a
life of Christian love?

2. In the United States there is a pattern of
people who give little of their own money to
charity, but who promote laws that require
others to pay more money to the government so
the state can redistribute it. They claim
moral superiority for this. Is this like the
story of Ananias – seeking glory when it is
not deserved?

III. They Fought

A. Read Hebrews 11:32-34. We have been discussing
followers of God who displayed great love and
generosity. Can we also serve God as mighty
warriors? Or did the warriors do this as a
failure of faith? (They did it because of faith.
God was behind these great acts of valor.)

B. Read Hebrews 11:35-38. Are these things listed as
a positive feature of Christian faith? (What is
positive is that they retained their faith.)

C. Read Hebrews 11:39-40. What is God’s goal for us?
(His promise of “something better.”)

D. Can we make sense of what we have studied? Can we
come up with a rule that tells us when to fight
and win and when to win by sacrificing ourselves
for others in love?

1. Didn’t God do both?

E. Friend, God wants you to be faithful. Whether you
voluntarily sacrifice your possessions or
yourself, whether you stand up and fight through
faith, or whether you suffer mistreatment because
of your faith, God calls us to believe in Him. God
has something better in mind for us. Satan has
deception and destruction in mind for us. Why not
choose God now?

IV. Next week: Light Shines in the Darkness.

Copr. 2024, Bruce N. Cameron, J.D. Scripture quotations are
from the ESV Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard
Version ), copyright 2001 by Crossway, a publishing
ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All
rights reserved. Suggested answers are found within
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Holy Spirit as you study.