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Small Group Questions (03/22/2015)

Mar 25, 2015   //   by Timothy Stephen   //   Small Group Questions  //  No Comments
  1. Read the words of Romans 8:31-32.  Think about the story of Abraham on Mount Moriah.  Discuss the following –

–What do the words, ” . . .  how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?” mean to you?  How do these words encourage you in our daily walk?  How do they encourage you during difficulties and trials?

–For those who are parents, share what this means to you.

 

  1. Read I Peter 1:18-19 and Acts 20:28.  Discuss the phrase “unblemished and spotless” in the Peter passage.  Think about all we have learned regarding the blood of Christ.   Discuss the phrase, “. . . He purchased with His own blood.”  Remember the slave girl illustration in the message?  Unlike the man in the market, God did not pay silver or gold to purchase us, instead he gave his own blood.

Ephesians 1:13-14 describes the seal and the down payment or earnest.  What do these images tell us about the security we have as believers in Christ?  How should this encourage us in times of sin, or temptation and trails?  Discuss what the words of Philip. 1:6 mean to you.

Review Ezekiel 16:1-14 and Ephesians 5:25-30.  What are some ways things we learn from these images about the power of God’s love and grace?  What do they teach us about the transforming power of God’s love in our lives and the church?  How do these images encourage you in your commitment to Christ?

Small Group Questions (03/08/2015)

Mar 11, 2015   //   by Timothy Stephen   //   Small Group Questions  //  No Comments
1.  Read the words of Psalm 2:1-3.  Discuss how this Psalm describes the nature of sin in our world today?
2.  Another word for sin (not described in the message) describes it as “missing the mark”.  An example would be an archer missing the target.  How does this describe win and its impact on our lives individually?
3.  How important was it for Jesus, our sacrifice for sin, to be sinless himself?
4.  What would be the effect of the cross if Jesus had not been without sin?
5.  Read I Corinthians 15:12-19.  How important is it that we understand the cross and the resurrection as the foundation of our faith?
6.  Were all those who followed God prior to the cross saved by the blood of Christ, or some other means?  Explain.
7.  Discuss the various symbols found in the Tabernacle of Israel and how they foreshadow the New Testament and the work of Jesus Christ.

Small Group Questions (03/01/2015)

Mar 5, 2015   //   by Timothy Stephen   //   Small Group Questions  //  No Comments
1.  Take time to discuss the story of Adam and Eve’s sin in Genesis 3.  Be sure and focus on the three traits of fallen humanity – blame shifting, blaming God, and the self fix.  (See i Jn. 1:8, Rom. 9:20, Gen. 3:7, Heb. 9:14, Gen. 3:21)
2.  Reread our primary text for this series of messages on the blood of Christ – Hebrews 9:11-14, 22).  What are some things this passage teaches us about the cross of Christ?  As you consider the Scarlet Thread found throughout the  Bible, what passages stand out most in your heart and mind?
3.  Read Zechariah 3:1-5  Discuss this Biblical picture in light of what Christ and his blood means to us.
4.  Read Revelation 3:14 – Discuss the phrase “washed their robes in the blood of the lamb”.  This is a graphic picture.  What does it say/mean to you?

Small Group Questions (02/22/2015)

Feb 24, 2015   //   by Timothy Stephen   //   Small Group Questions  //  No Comments
Discuss the following statements made in Sunday’s message -
1.  Most of know that we are not the greatest, we just don’t want to be the least (last).
2.  Jesus taught that true authority (spiritual authrority) is a matter of function, not status.
3.  The discipline of service sets us free from the need to compare ourselves with others. (Comment on 2 Corinthians 10:12)
4.  One of the greatest dangers of religion is that it often leads to pride.
In the message, Pastor Dan listed six differences between self-righteous service and true service.  Take time to review and discuss these differences.
In the message, Pastor Dan iisted eight different kinds of service.  Review and discuss these.  Can you think of others?
True service teaches us humility.  Why is humility so important for those of us who follow Jesus Christ?

Small Group Questions (02/15/2015)

Feb 19, 2015   //   by Timothy Stephen   //   Small Group Questions  //  No Comments
1.  Discuss how the discipline of submission sets us free from the need to always get our own way.  How important is this in our individual lives?  How important is this in the church?
2.  Submission should never be practiced when it becomes desturctive.  Sometimes this is easy to determine and sometimes it is not.  What are some of the more difficult cirucmstances we may face regarding whether submission is destructive or not?  Example – A wife who feels trapped and unfulfilled due to an overbearing and domineering husband.
3.  How does the practice of submission bring true spiritual authority in our lives?  What is the price that we must pay to experience this kind of spritual authority?
4.  What are some ways we can encourage and help those who in positions of leadership in the church, but do not understand or practice submission – that is, those who no not understand spiritual authority.
5.  Share some issues or testimonies regarding submission issues in your life, past or present.

Small Group Questions (02/08/2015)

Feb 13, 2015   //   by Timothy Stephen   //   Small Group Questions  //  No Comments

1.  What are some things that discourage us from the practice of solitude?
2.  What are some ways you can relate to the story of Elijah at Mount Horeb as described in I Kings 19?
3.  Do you agree that many of our words/conversations are aimed at justifying our actions or inactions?  How does the practice of solitude help us to overcome this need to justify ourselves in the eyes of others?
4.  Discuss the needed balance between solitude and community.  Why are both important?  What are some pitfall associated with a lack of balance between community and solitude?
5. Review the Scriptures in the message detailing the practice of solitude by Jesus.  Take time to discuss and reflect on these passages.
6.  Review the practical advice on practicing solitude.  What are some things we can do to carry out this advice in our lives?
7.  Review the fruits of practicing solitude.  Which ones do you personally connect with?
Take time to pray and ask God to help with the discipline of solitude.

Small Group Questions (02/01/2015)

Feb 4, 2015   //   by Timothy Stephen   //   Small Group Questions  //  No Comments
  1. What does the phrase, “Simplicity is freedom” mean to you?
  2. Why is it important to understand that simplicity is an inward reality that results in an outward lifestyle?
  3. What are some pitfalls in our lives if we fail to understand this truth?  How do we cultivate this inward reality?
  4. What are some ways we can see ourselves set free from the desire for things?
  5. What does it mean to seek God’s kingdom first?  What does the promise of Matt. 6:33, “and all these things shall be added to you.” mean to you personally?
  6. Comment on the following statement – We buy things we don’t want to impress people we don’t like.
  7. How does a life of simplicity help us to recognize both the greed and lust of the world as well as the promise of God for his peace and provision in our lives?

Small Group Questions (12/14/2014)

Dec 18, 2014   //   by Timothy Stephen   //   Small Group Questions  //  No Comments
  1. In John 10:11, Jesus states that he is the good shepherd because he lays down his life for the sheep.  Compare this with the words of God to the religious “shepherds” of Israel in Ezekiel 34.
  2. Reread I Corinthians 1:26-29.  Why does God choose the things the world considers foolish?  (See verse 27).  What does this mean?  How does this shame the wise?  How significant is verse 29?  What does it teach us about God and his ways?  What does it teach us about fallen humanity and our ways?  What are some examples of this “boasting” in our world?
  3. Reread James 1:9-11.  How should this advice effect the church and our relaitonships with others in the congregation?  How important is this advice for those who are wealthy according to the standards of this world?  How important is this advice for the poor?
  4. Discuss the contrasts between the shepherds in the fields and the angelic host who announced the birth of Christ.  What are some lessons to be learned about the heart of God in this event?

Small Group Questions (12/07/2014)

Dec 11, 2014   //   by Timothy Stephen   //   Small Group Questions  //  No Comments
  1. Bethleham was a place associated with many Biblcal events.  Discuss the following events and how you think they related to God’s choice of Bethlehem as the birth place of his son . . .
    1. The death of Rachel and the birth of Ben Oni (Son of My Sorrow) or Bejamin (Son of My Right Hand – Jacob’s name for the son born to Rachel)
    2. The choice of young David as King of Israel in I Samuel 16.
  2. Augustus Caesar issued the decree that fulfilled the prophecy of Micah 5:2.  What does this tell us about the sovereignty of God in the history of our world and in our own lives?
  3. Take some time and talk about Advent in general.  What does this tradition mean to you?  What are some ways we can celebrate advent and keep our focus on the birht of Christ during this time of year?
  4. Share with members of your group times when the light of Christ has seen you through times of darkness.

Small Group Questions (11/30/2014)

Dec 4, 2014   //   by Timothy Stephen   //   Small Group Questions  //  No Comments
  1. The prophecy candle speaks of expectation and hope.  Discuss the importance of these two things in our lives in general.
  2. Read Romans 5:3-5 and discuss the progression of growth and maturity that takes place through suffering.  Answer the following – How does endurance in trials build character in our lives?   How do you define character?  How does character give birth to hope?  Does this imply that godly character produces hope while a lack of godly character leads to despair?  Discuss.
  3. How does the first coming of Christ lead us to think more about his second coming?
  4. What are some ways we prepare for the Christmas season and celebrate its true meaning?
  5. Read and discuss Psalm 27:14.  Why is waiting so hard?  What lessons does waiting teach us?

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