NBC Sunday School Manual For January 15, 2023 :Topic – God Promises To Guide Our Ways

By | January 14, 2023

NBC Sunday School Manual For January 15, 2023 :Topic – God Promises To Guide Our Ways

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Devotional Reading:
Psalm 119:81-96.

Background Scripture:
Isaiah 48:1-22.

Lesson Scripture:
Isaiah 48:3-8a, 17.

“This is what the LORD says-your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: ‘I am the LORD your God, who teaches you what is best for you, who directs you in the way you should go.” Isaiah 48:17.

By the end of the lesson, class members should be able to:
● Enumerate Israel’s sins and the consequences they suffered;
● Explain God’s strong dislike for stubbornness and idolatry;
● Commit themselves to God’s guidance and enjoy the blessings of doing so.


There is an African proverb that says, “He who asks for guidance and direction will never miss his way.” For instance, driving to an unfamiliar area in metropolitan cities like Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt and some other big cities can sometimes be burdensome, especially for visitors. Interestingly, technology has made some things very easy. Travellers can always be guided with the use of modern technology of Google map to get to their destinations safely. This digital device, when switched on will continually guide the user with voice note on the direction to take, without contravening any traffic rule that will result in severe penalty. This device has been used over time by many people, and in all the instances, it has not misled anyone. What is required is to simply follow its guidance until one gets to one’s destination. However, as good as this device may seem, it can be deficient as a result of poor network, insufficient data, insensitivity of the user or inability to recognise the road network, as shown on the map. Prophet Isaiah, therefore, made it clear from the passage that it is only God who teaches what is best for His people and directs them in the way they should go.

Chapter 48 of the book of Isaiah concludes the first part of “the Book of the Consolation of Israel.” The consequences they suffered for their rebellious lifestyle was life in exile, for a period of seventy years. However, God gave a renewed hope of His promise to guide their ways while they were still in Babylon. God, through Prophet Isaiah, wanted His chosen people to know that all they had suffered had been predicted, and that He had plans to lead them out of Babylon. God is aware of what laid ahead; He predicted future events concerning Israel and they were all fulfilled. The focus of today’s lesson is God’s promise to guide His people in all their ways. The promise is also applicable to contemporary Christians. As our ultimate guide, we should humble ourselves and accept His wisdom, as He leads us through the right path.


[Isaiah 48:3-5]

The story of Israel is characterised by rebellion, unbelief, disobedience and idolatry, despite God’s warning and the fact that they have been called by the name of the Lord (v. 1). God told them He predicted what He intended to do a long time ago. According to verse 4, because God is Omnipresent, He had foreknowledge of their stubbornness, which is described as rigid as iron and unyielding as bronze. God revealed these things to them before they came to pass, so that they would not give credit to their gods by saying, “My images brought them about; my wooden image and metal god ordained them.” (v. 5b) Idols and images, as used in the passage depict things that are made from wood and metal. Certainly, God wanted to prove to them that it was He, and not their idols, that was responsible for the turn of events.

The people of Israel were very stubborn; they deliberately rebelled against the Lord, and preferred to make gods for themselves, which they worshipped, despite God’s constant warning against idolatry. God was displeased with their sinful and idolatrous lifestyle. He used the metaphoric expression “neck of iron” to describe their unwillingness to submit to His lordship, despite His marvellous works in their midst since they left Egypt. In the same vein, the phrase “brazen forehead” depicts a person with a closed mind, who had persisted in sinfulness. As His chosen people, God expected Israel to be a model to other nations in obedience, righteousness and trust but regrettably, they were influenced by other nations and became like them. Unlike humankind who is limited by space, God’s nature as the Omnipresent God (ever present) makes Him to know and predict future events before they take place, like the case of the Israelites. The reason for the prediction was to prevent the people from claiming that their god ordained them (v. 5). God sees and knows our future, even things we do not know about ourselves. The glory that is due Him should not be ascribed to people or other gods because He abhors disobedience, stubbornness and idolatry.

1. Discuss the possible reasons for humankind’s stubborn attitude toward God and the consequences.
2. Explain the areas Christians often demonstrate stubbornness. thereby displease God today.

[Isaiah 48:6-8, 17]

The fact has been established that God had predicted what the future holds for His people (Israel) and how everything happened, as He had foretold (v. 3). In verse 6, the people were admonished to admit the fulfilment of the prophecy with a promise to reveal new things, unknown things. Therefore, they cannot claim to have known about them. He said to them in verse 8, “You have neither heard nor understood; from of old your ears have not been open. Well do I know how treacherous you are; you were called a rebel from birth.” Because the people had been rebellious from birth, they were called a rebel. And if God had revealed the new things, probably Israel’s release from captivity in Babylon and the coming Servant (Isaiah 42:9) to His people, they would have claimed that they had foreknowledge of them. More so, they have not been trustworthy, having witnessed all of God’s great power and miracles. Prophet Isaiah, however, confirmed another promise in verse 17; he said that their Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel, is their Lord and God who teaches what is best for them and directs them in the way they should go.

The summary of the lesson is that our individual acts of sin merely prove that each of us is a transgressor from the womb. It means that human rebellion and sin are innate. Nevertheless, it should be noted that God’s promise to Israel was to continue to teach them and guide their ways, in fulfilment of His covenant relationship with their forefathers, even though they had made mistakes in time past. The message in verse 8 is an indication that the people were still obstinate and rebellious against God from the time they were born. This message is that even when we choose to go our own way, doing things the way we want without any recourse to God, His promise of constant guide cannot be cancelled. Therefore, believers in Christ should endeavour to forsake their sinful ways and embrace God’s promise to constantly teach us what is best and direct our paths.

1. Discuss ways the church can help this rebellious world to hear what God is saying today.
2. How can Christians overcome the innate desire to be rebellious against God?

● Based on today’s lesson, make a commitment to constantly obey God, as He directs our paths, from time to time.

Fellowship and Ministry Building Activities:
● Let a volunteer share a personal testimony of how he/she recently enjoyed the benefits of divine guidance.

Take Home: Write down three lessons you are taking home from today’s lesson.
● __________
● __________
● __________

Remain Inspired & Be Lifted!

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