March 27, 2022 – Deuteronomy 6

Lesson Date: March 27, 2022

Focal Scripture Passage: Deuteronomy 6:1-25

AIM: To lead students to discover and describe the heart of God’s Law, and to commit themselves to loving and obeying Jesus Christ fully.

 

Before class: Read the notes on Deuteronomy 6 found in the Sunday School Teacher Book.  Write the follow phrases (or similar ones) on the marker board or chalkboard: “The Heart of the Matter;” “In a Nutshell;” “The Bottom Line;” and “Getting Down to Brass Tacks.”  To further generate interest, you could write scripture quotations on long strips of paper and attach them to the frame of your classroom door (inside and outside).  You could even attach scripture quotations to your hand and forehead.  Your students will remember these visuals.  Ask a volunteer to find Matthew 22:36-37 and be prepared to read it to the class when called upon.

 

INTRODUCTION (Create Learning Readiness): Read the phrases on the board aloud and ask the students what they mean (they all refer to the central, main point of a matter).  Ask them to suggest ways they might use one or more of those phrases in a sentence.

Tell the class that the books of Exodus, Leviticus, and Numbers are filled with many rules, laws, and regulations by which the Jewish people were to live.  The Old Testament Law was very detailed and complex.  In fact, Jewish scholars identified over 600 different laws.  By the time Jesus came to earth, the Jewish Law had become so complicated and bloated with man’s traditions that scribes, lawyers, and other religious people devoted their entire lives to trying to understand and explain it.  Tell the students that on one occasion Jesus was asked to name the greatest commandment in the Law.  Ask the previously enlisted volunteer to read Matthew 22:36-37.  In answer to that question, Jesus quoted a verse we will study this morning.

Tell the class today’s lesson is about The Heart of the Law.  As we study Deuteronomy 6, we will discover and describe the heart of God’s Law.

 

HEART OF THE LESSON (Bible Study):

  1. Review.
    • Remind the class that the book of Deuteronomy consists of a series of sermons Moses preached to the Israelites on the east side of the Jordan River, shortly before they crossed over into the Promised Land (locate on the Map of the Promised Land).
    • Ask: “What was last week’s lesson about?” (the Ten Commandments).
    • Lead the students to recite the Ten Commandments from memory.
  2. Obey God and Be Blessed.
    • Ask a volunteer to read Deuteronomy 6:1-3.
    • Explain that verse 1 says Moses repeated the commands of God to the people.
    • Ask: “According to verse 2, what were the Israelites supposed to do?” (fear the Lord and obey His commands; their descendants were to do the same).
    • Ask: “What blessings did God promise if they obeyed Him?” (things would go well for them and they would increase mightily in the Promised Land of abundance).
    • Erase the board and write the heading “The Heart of the Law.”
    • Tell the class that verses 1-3 tell us to “Obey God and Be Blessed.”
    • Write that, along with the scripture reference, on the board.
    • Tell the students God had more to say about this.
    • Read Deuteronomy 6:13-19.
    • Add this verse reference on the board beside that point.
    • Ask: “In verses 18-19, what blessings did God promise if Israel obeyed Him?” (it would be well with them, they would possess the Promised Land, and they would drive out all their enemies).
    • Explain the following:
      • Throughout the book of Deuteronomy, Moses repeatedly told the Israelites that obedience would bring blessing, but disobedience would bring punishment, hurt, and ultimately destruction.
      • He did that much like a parent warns his or her child to stay away from bad behaviors.
    • Summarize: God told His people to obey Him so they and their descendants could enjoy His blessings.
  3. Know and Love God.
    • Read Deuteronomy 6:4-5.
    • Tell the class the second part of the “Heart of the Law” is to “Know and Love God.”
    • Write that, along with the scripture reference, on the board.
    • Explain the following:
      • Verse 4 makes it clear that there are no other gods besides Jehovah (just as the first of the Ten Commandments teaches).
      • Verse 4 also reminds us that we are not gods, nor are we going to become gods (as some false religions teach).
      • Any time anyone or anything takes God’s place of pre-eminence in our life we are guilty of violating the first commandment and the truth of verse 4.
      • False religion (putting anything else ahead of the One True God) is the cause of all the problems in the world.
    • Ask: “According to verse 5, how are we supposed to love the Lord?” (with all our heart, soul, and might).
    • Ask students to suggest meanings for the words heart, soul, and might.
    • Ask: “What do you think it means to love God with all your heart?”
    • Ask: “What do you think it means to love God with all your soul?”
    • Ask: “What do you think it means to love God with all your might?”
    • Summarize: God told His people to know Him as the One True God and to love Him with all their heart, soul, and might.
  4. Teach Your Children God’s Word.
    • Ask a volunteer to read Deuteronomy 6:6-9.
    • Ask: “According to verse 6, where are we supposed to keep God’s Word?” (in our heart).
    • Ask: “When are we supposed to teach and talk about the Word of God?” (all the time).
    • Ask: “Why do you think God told the people to do the things described in verses 8-9?” (to keep His Word always in their thoughts and minds).
    • Ask the students if they noticed the scripture quotations on the doorframe or on your forehead and hand.
    • Explain that we are not required to physically do those things, but we should always keep God’s Word before us. It is good to have scripture posted in our homes, but even better to have it “posted” in our hearts.
    • Tell the class the third part of the “Heart of the Law” is to “Teach Your Children God’s Word.”
    • Write that, along with the scripture reference, on the board.
    • Explain the following:
      • The church teaches children God’s Word, but that teaching comes only once or twice a week and only for a few brief moments at a time.
      • The primary responsibility for teaching children God’s Word lies with their parents.
      • Parents have opportunities throughout the day to interject Bible truths and principles into everyday situations.
    • Tell the class God said more in this chapter about teaching our children.
    • Read Deuteronomy 6:20-25.
    • Add that scripture reference to the board.
    • Ask: “According to verse 20, what would their children ask them?” (why God gave them all these rules).
    • Ask: “What were the Israelites to tell their children?” (the things God had done for them – v. 21-23, the Laws God gave them – v. 24, and the blessings that come from obeying God – v. 25).
    • Tell the students we still need to teach those things to our children, grandchildren, and other young people with whom we have influence.
    • Summarize: God told His people, in no uncertain terms, to teach their children His Word at every possible opportunity.
  5. Don’t Forget God When Blessings Come.
    • Explain the following:
      • After being slaves in Egypt and then nomads in the desert, God was about to give the Israelites a new land full of cities, furnished houses, and established agricultural crops.
      • They were going to be blessed with great abundance, but there was a danger in that blessing.
      • Moses gave the Israelites a very important warning.
    • Read Deuteronomy 6:10-12
    • Ask: “What warning did Moses give the people?” (be careful not to forget the Lord).
    • Tell the class the fourth part of the “Heart of the Law” is “Don’t Forget God When Blessings Come.”
    • Write that, along with the scripture reference, on the board.
    • Ask: “Do we run the risk of doing this?” (yes, it is human nature to forget God when things are going well for us: we pray when we’re in trouble, but forget God when all is well).
    • Summarize: God warned His people not to forget Him when blessings came their way.

 

PERSONAL APPLICATION: Briefly review the lesson by reading the four things written on the board that make up “The Heart of the Law.”

Remind the students that the Old Testament Law included many different rules and regulations.  In chapter 5 the Law was summarized down to Ten Commandments.  In chapter 6 it is simplified further to the four things they have discovered today.  Remind them that Jesus brought it down to its most basic element when He quoted verse 5 (“And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.”), calling it the first and greatest commandment.  If people truly did that one thing, the other rules and requirements would take care of themselves.

Stress the fact that trying to obey all of God’s Law will make you a better person, but it will NOT save your soul or take you to heaven when you die.  That’s because no matter how hard we try to live right, we will still sin and fall short of God’s perfect standard (Rom. 3:23).  That’s why Jesus Christ, God’s holy and perfect son, came to earth as a man.  He died in our place, paying the penalty for our sin, so that He could give us His righteousness (2 Cor. 5:21).  The only way to be truly right with God is to repent of our sin and place our faith in Jesus Christ.

Remind the students that Deuteronomy 6:12 says, “Beware, lest thou forget the Lord.”  Tell them there is no better time than today to commit their lives to Jesus Christ (2 Cor. 6:2).  Encourage any who have never been saved to turn from their sins and place their faith in Jesus right now.  Encourage those who are already saved to rededicate themselves to Jesus and commit to obeying Him fully.  Lead a closing prayer of commitment.

 

CONCLUSION: Ask everyone to memorize Deuteronomy 6:4-7.  Encourage them to look for opportunities this week to talk to their family about the Word of God “when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.”

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