NextLevel Online: Going Home: A Study on the Book of Ezra

Session 1: Going Home

This first session is an introduction to the book of Ezra. We define home and get our arms around with the phrase "names and numbers". We also talk about Ezra, the person and her actions.



Classroom

Classroom Instructions

Lesson
Materials: Lesson Outline
Leader

“Home” is a word that conjures up many emotions.

  • Psalm 137
  • Psalm 126

Perhaps we can get our arms around this overview with the phrase Names and Numbers.

  • Think about these numbers:

    • 12— 10 northern tribes known as Israel; 2 southern tribes known as Judah
    • 70—The number of years that the Messianic line was kept alive in Babylon.
    • 3—three is such a significant number in the Bible:
      • 3 Waves of people return to the Promised Land.
      • 3 Leaders who led these returns
      • 3 Prophets who assisted the other three leaders
      • 3 Enemies who opposed the other leaders and prophets
    • 2
      • Ezra and Nehemiah constitute one scroll, known as “The Writings.”
      • Two was also the number of the languages used in this book. Most of the book is in the Hebrew language, but 4:8-6:18 is actually in Aramaic.
    • 1
      • Cyrus
      • The nation of Israel
      • Jesus
  • Thinking about the name:

    • Ezra’s name means “help.” He helped the remnant in three ways:
      • He helped reestablish the sacrificial system.
      • He helped the remnant study the Bible.
      • He helped begin the process of pulling the OT canon together.

Discussion Questions:

  • Israel was punished in Babylonian captivity for 70 years for its habitual idolatry. Was the punishment effective? Did it work? What did Jesus encounter in the New Testament to indicate that it worked so well that they swung the pendulum to the other side (Mark 7:1-23)?

  • Why was it so important to resecure the land of Israel? Why did it matter that the Messiah would have to come from this land (Genesis 17: 8; Psalm 48:2; 1 Peter 2:6; Revelation 14:1)?

  • Zerubbabel was a type of Christ. Look in a Bible Dictionary for what typology is. What does knowing that the Old Testament is full of types do to interpreting the entire Bible with a Christ focus?

  • Ezra was a great student of the Bible (Ezra 7:20; Nehemiah 8:8). How is his Bible study a model for ours?

About NextLevel Online

The vision of Ozark Christian College is to glorify God by evangelizing the lost and edifying Christians worldwide. The mission of Ozark Christian College is to train men and women for Christian service as a degree-granting institution of biblical higher education.