His Now | 01/14/24
1. Israel was God’s chosen people, as are we the Church. What's the implication of being "His People", meaning we are chosen for a purpose rather than being preferred/special?
a) With this in mind, how do we, as the American/Western Church sometimes get this wrong?
b) How can we guard against that mindset?
a) How has this always been God’s intention, and how does this affect your view of God and Biblical history?
b) What does it mean for us to be “a priesthood”, and what are the implications for the way we live?
a) What does the way God delivered you show you? And how does that affect the way you relate to Him?
b) How does grace fit into this, both in the context of salvation and after we’re saved when we sin?
c) What was God’s purpose in delivering Israel out of Egypt, and how does that relate to us as His People today?
5. We are called to be distinctive as God’s People. What stops you from being different to non-believers, and what can you do about it?
6. We are God's People, not God’s Person.
a) How can we have a communal mindset as a church body?
b) What would it look like for you to give your allegiance to His People?
c) What was God’s purpose in calling us into a community of believers?
Worship Now | 01/21/24
1. Read Matthew 4:8-10. The devil had a specific form of worship in mind. What do we typically think worship is?
a) What does Jesus' answer reveal about the true nature of worship?
2. Read Romans 12:1. Paul introduces this new concept of worshiping God by offering ourselves to Him as a 'living sacrifice'. What does this actually mean to be a living sacrifice?
a) What are some of the practical ways we can worship God in this way?
3. Read Romans 12:1-2. How does serving/worshiping God enable us to better understand God's will for us?
4. Read John 4:19-24. What does it mean to worship the Father in spirit and in truth?
a) How was this a subtle invitation to the woman Jesus was speaking to?
b) It's also an invitation to us today. What changes do you need to make to accept this invitation?
5. Read Deuteronomy 6:10-14. How can physical comforts and conveniences affect our worship of God?
a) What things are you tempted to worship rather than God?
6. God's word to our church family this year is: ‘Draw near to God with a sincere heart and the full assurance that faith brings… Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name; make known among the nations what he has done.’ (Hebrews 10:22 / Psalm 105:1). How can you draw nearer to God with a sincere heart, in spirit and truth, this week?
Family Now | 01/28/24
1. Think about the idea of being dependent on others. What thoughts/feelings do you associate with that? Contrast that with the idea of being independent. How do those two ideas originate from our culture?
2. How is individualism actually a modern idol?
a) What would happen if we recognized it as the idol it is in our life?
3. Portland and Vancouver are two of the most depressed cities in the country. How does this illustrate the tension between the independence we want and the community we crave?
4. Read 1 Corinthians 12:12-27. What does interdependence look like in the Body of Christ?
a) What responses/hesitancy do you have to God calling you to be interdependent?
5. The Holy Spirit is like the “emulsifier” that joins different elements together in unity. How does diversity being an intentional part of God’s design counteract: a) our tendency to compare ourselves, b) our self-sufficiency, c) our resistance to leadership/communal vision, d) our sense of not being needed?
6. Read 1 Corinthians 12:26-27 again. How are you essential for the health of the church?
a) Do you treat other people as if that is true of them? Why/why not?
7. How can we recognize when we are putting our personal needs/preferences/expectations of others above the needs of the Body?
8. Read 1 Corinthians 13:4-8. Why does the interdependence of the church speak to our divided world that’s feeling lonely and isolated, in a way that’s imperfect but irresistible?
Evangelize Now | 02/04/24
1. Discuss this quote from Tozer: "Time is a resource that is non renewable and non transferable." Reflect on the urgency of sharing our stories and the message of Jesus with others. Does it feel urgent to you?
a) Do you live as if it is urgent (why/why not)?
b) Do you feel equipped to share (why/what do you need/how can you get equipped)?
2. How is our willingness to share Jesus with others reflect our love for Him?
3. Read the account of Philip and the Ethiopian eunuch in Acts 8:26-40. What does this teach you about God's sovereignty in the process of salvation (the power that actually saves people), and how God positions us to share His message with others?
4. Read the word God gave us last year: John 15:4-16. What opportunities do you have to share the gospel simply because of where you are in your normal life?
a) Who has He brought into your everyday life who doesn’t know Him? Stop and take some time to be still and ask the Spirit to show you who He wants you to share Him with.
5. "We share, but the Holy Spirit convicts". How does this encourage/motivate you?
6. If the purpose of salvation is reconciliation, what things might He be wanting to reconcile in our lives?
a) How can we bring the life of Jesus into these places in our lives and communities, as vehicles for bringing the gospel to others?
7. Practice sharing the gospel with each other.