by Peter Hiller

Download a printable PDF of the Word One Bible Study for Pentecost 5 Gospel.

Text: Matthew 11:25-30 for the 5th Sunday after Pentecost, Lectionary Series A


Participants will:

  1. Discover that life without Christ, life under the Law causes spiritual unrest.
  2. Recognize that Christ frees us from the burden of the Law through his death on the cross.

Materials Needed

Slips of paper
Waste basket

Group Guidelines

This Bible study has been developed for use in a small group of 6-8 persons. Choose as a leader the person whose birthday is closest to today. The leader’s purpose is to keep the group moving through the Bible study. One of the leaders most important functions is to encourage the participation of all members.

Building Community

  1. Forced choice: Have the entire class stand in the center of a room. Tell them that they will describe themselves by deciding which of two opposite words best describes themselves. Designate one side of the room for people to stand on who agree with the first option and the other side for those who agree with the second option. Continue through the list of descriptions and take time to discuss why people chose what they did.
    1. Ask participants which of the following words best describes them:
      wolf or Labrador Retriever                                       pillow or rock
      spring or fall                                                                 morning or evening
      party or solitude                                                          steak or pizza
      work or play                                                                 competitive or cooperative
      thrifty or extravagant                                                  calm or intense

Getting into Scripture

  1. Form a circle with the group and ask each member to answer each question. Encourage other members to ask questions to help clarify and broaden each person’s response.
    1. What was the highlight of your past week? Why?
    2. What was the low point of your past week? Why?
  2. Read together Matthew 11 :25-30.
  3. What causes spiritual unrest? See Romans 3:9-20 and Romans 6:23a.
  4. Life without Christ or life, under the law, means spiritual unrest In what ways do those apart from Christ experience “Spiritual unrest?” See Galatians 5:19-21.
  5. How do you suppose those who do not know Christ attempt to satisfy their spiritual unrest? Does it work?
  6. In what ways does Christ give us spiritual rest based on Matthew 11 :28-30, Colossians 1: 13-14, Ro mans 10:4, Isaiah 53:4-5 and Romans 6:23b?

Reinforcing What Has Been Learned

  1. Take five minutes to have each participant write down the answers to the following questions. After­ward have each participant share their answers.
  2. Describe a time in your life when a sin you committed created further discord or unrest later on?
  3. What does it mean to you when Christ says, “Come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest?”


Have each student write on a slip of paper the thing that is causing the most spiritual unrest in their life. Close in a circle prayer asking each participant to say the following … “Lord today I give to you my burdens.” At the same time have each person place their slip of paper into a trash basket in the center of the group. The leader will end by saying, “Thank you for taking our burdens and sins through your death on the cross. Amen!”