May 17, 2020

Let’s spend some time thinking together with God about this week’s message.   If you haven’t heard it yet, you can watch it online here. Throughout this exercise, be aware of what God might be saying to you and what you are going to do about it.

FOR GROUPS

READ

The Scripture for this week was John 15:1-17.  Read the passage and spend three minutes of silence while you try to discern what God is saying to you through the passage. 

DISCUSS

The Big Idea for this message was “The gospel is most alive when we are actively living it out!” Dave contrasted two postures for sharing the gospel. One is more intellectually oriented and aims to convince people of the truths of the gospel. The other is more relationally oriented and advocates giving people a front-row seat to you honestly living out your faith.  What have been some of your experiences with either of these? Have you found one to be more effective and fruitful?

Dave suggested that the good news is not about going to heaven someday, it’s about heaven coming to earth in the person of Jesus, and how Jesus wants to have a relationship with us through faith.  What do you think of this idea? What role does “heaven” play in your thinking about the good news?  To what degree is future residency in heaven a motivating factor in your faith journey?

Mark, Aly, Tyler, and Rachel discussed the idea of sharing the love of Jesus over the “long-haul” – that you should find a context where you can deepen relationship with people who are not followers of Jesus over a long period of time.  What is it about the “long-haul” context that can be so effective? Have you ever made a “long-haul” commitment to sharing the love of Jesus with a specific person? What has this looked like? 

PRAY

Spend three minutes asking the Holy Spirit to give you some thoughts about how to live differently in light of what was revealed to you through the Scripture and hearing from others in your Group. 

FOR individual Study

READ

The Scripture for this week was John 15:1-17. Read the passages and spend three minutes of silence while you try to discern what God is saying to you through the passages. 

CONSIDER

In verse 11, Jesus says that “I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.”  What is the “this” he’s referring to in the previous passages? 

Why do you think love and joy are connected? What about remaining or abiding in Jesus’ love 

leads to joy?

What do you think it means for our joy to be complete? What is Jesus claiming here? Does a life of complete joy still have hardship in it?

In verse 7, Jesus warns that, “If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned.” The presence of the word “like” indicates that Jesus is using a simile to make a point. What point is he trying to make? What is he saying about the person who does not remain or abide in him?  What is an interpretation of this that you think someone might conclude based on the imagery; and further, is this the right interpretation?

PRAY

Spend three minutes asking the Holy Spirit to give you some thoughts about how to live differently in light of what was revealed to you through the Scripture. 

SHARE

Use what you learned to spark conversation with someone.  Ask what they think about some of these topics. 

Want to find a community to talk through some of these ideas? Check out our Groups and eGroups here.