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What would your spirituality look like if you were cast away on a desert island? This question helps us access the spirituality that Jesus taught was the most rewarding kind. Pastor Luke preaches from Matthew 6:1–19 in “Virtue Signaling,” part 2 of his 5-part series “Being Perfect.”OPEN. 1. Assuming you had the money, what charity would you most like to give $1 million to? How would they recognize your gift?
UNPACK. Read Matthew 6: 1–19
2. Jesus gives a general principle about how to do practical piety in v. 1. What is it? How would you restate it in your own words?
3. Jesus talks about three kinds of personal piety. What are they? How are vv. 2–4, 5–6, and 16–18 similar to each other? How are they different?
4. Jesus says “whenever you,” not “if you,” about each of the three practices. Do you know people who treat some of these practices as option and others as required? Should they? Why or why not?
5. How are the three practices similar and different? (For example, what does prayer have in common with charity?)
6. What motives might cause someone to give alms? To pray? To fast?
7. Apart from the praise of other people, what kind of reward should someone expect for giving alms? (Consider Deuteronomy 15: 10.)
8. What reward should people expect for fasting? (Consider Deuteronomy 8: 3.)
9. What reward should people expect for praying? Why?
APPLY. 10. Of the three practices, which does our culture approve of and reward? How can those practices be done “in secret” today? Which practices is our culture indifferent or hostile to?
11. Which of these practices is easiest for you to do? Which requires more effort? Why? Can the reward(s) you identified make it easier? How?