If you missed the sermon on Mark 15:22-39, here it is: A Gamers view of the crucifixion (or looking out with Jesus)
- Discuss the different people who were present at the crucifixion – what were they doing there, what motives might they have had, how did they respond on the day?
- Discuss your reaction to the crucifixion (look at all the gospel accounts and Psalm 22).
- In the sermon it was suggested that the crucifixion requires a response? Does it? If so, what is your response?
- We were challenged earlier in the service to encourage eachother with scriptures which have been helpful to us this year. Spend some time as a group doing this and consider learning a new scripture, together, each week.
If you missed the sermon, you can pick it up here: It started with a kiss….
- Read the passage: Mark makes a point of translating the Hebrew word Abba, to ensure everyone knows what this word means – why is it a significant word and what does it tell us about the kind of relationship God wants to have with us?
- Discuss and work out what we can learn from:
- the words of Jesus prayer – what exactly did Jesus mean?
- why did the disciples keep sleeping?
- why did Jesus pray the same things more than once?
- What if anything surprises you about Jesus arrest?
- If Peter was willing to draw a sword and fight, what made all the disciples run away?
- What can we learn from this passage for our lives in the here and now in Ely?
Here is the sermon, in case you missed it: Your Choice
1. Read through the ‘Good shepherd passage’ John 10: 7-18. As a group discuss the passage, unpicking the various aspects i.e. who are the sheep, who is the hired man etc. etc.
2. Sunday’s message focused on verse 10. What is this ‘rich and satisfying life’ that Jesus talks about? How might Christians be missing out on experiencing this life in the present?
3. The Gospel message is more than ‘God is Love’ – Discuss.
4. People need to hear the Gospel. A) how can we as individuals tell them? B) how as a church can we encourage and enable each other to share that Good News.
5. Spend some time in prayer thanking God for those who visited on Sunday and also praying for those individuals.
Every now and then, in this crazy society we live, I think we need reminding of this:
“I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept his claim to be God. That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — on the level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God, but let us not come with any patronising nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.”
Some study questions based on the sermon Do You Have Real Peace?
- Read Colossians 2:8-14
- Verse 8 – How might we be captured, and by what kinds of empty philosophies and high sounding nonsense?
- Verses 9 & 10 – Why is it crucial that we see and believe the truth that Christ is both completely man and completely God? Also what does it mean, “that you are complete by your union with God“?
- Verses 11 & 12 – Discuss what we heard in the sermon about these verses on circumcision and baptism. How might we overstate or understate the importance of a public declaration of faith in baptism?
- Verses 13 & 14 – Pastor says, “These are powerful statements and if taken to heart will have a profound affect on the believer” Do you agree, if so (or not) why, and what difference is it going to have on your life with Christ?
This study is based on the sermon What you see is what you get!
- Before reading the passage share with each other how you would answer someone who asks ‘who is Jesus Christ, and why should I be bothered?’
- Reading: Colossians 1:15-20
This passage is full of incredible and sometimes complex statements which we unpacked in the sermon.
- As a group take each phrase and carefully discuss what it says about the person and work of Christ
- What difference does having a right understanding of who He is make to us as individuals today.
Pray for the fellowship of Ebenezer Lumley and the family of Rev.Angel Ama-Lamin who died recently. Peter had the privilege to pray for him whilst in Sierra Leone.
Pray for the new clinic which has been established at The Theological College at Jui. This clinic will serve the local community. Pray especially for the little girl with third degree burns to her leg.
Pray for the patients and staff at the hospital at Koidu. Peter and Janet were given the opportunity to visit and pray for individuals, including Muslims. They also met Victoria a three year old who had accidentally been pushed backwards into boiling water. Her chance of survival is minimal but with prayer and God’s intervention a miracle is possible.
Sierra Leone is heading for elections early next year and the process has started with voter registration. Pray against any form of violence approach that electoral process and for God to lead the people of this country to vote for the right person.
Pray for wisdom for Bishop Theophilus as he makes important decisions. Pray also for Magnus, Daniel and Alex as they advise and support the Bishop.
Thank God for the wonderful work that is happening at Bethesda. Pray for Allusine, Musa and Issa as they have been reunited to their family but desire to be back at Bethesda. Thank God for Aminata and Sallie and pray that He will heal Sallie from her discomfort.
Thank God for the stoic teachers in our schools; against all odds they continue to give their best. Also pray for our pastors; for safety in travel, protection against illness and a fresh vitality in their ministry.
Some questions from Russell, based on his sermon: Peace and Persecution
Read Matthew 5:1-12
- What is a Peacemaker? Why are we called to be Peacemakers?
- Discuss the difference between Peace the world offers and what Peace God gives?
Choose an example and discuss why you chose it.
- Read Luke 6:27-28 – What ways can we as Christians show peace to those who are indifferent?
- What is persecution? Have you ever experienced it in any form? And how did that make you feel?
- Looking at v11 – What is our response to this? And why is there such great joy and blessing from such suffering?
- Take a moment or two and pray for our brothers & sisters caught up in persecution.
This study is based on the sermon: Need an attitude adjustment?
Reading: Matthew 5:6-8
- How do you feel when the Lord reminds you through His Word, or a sermon about a need to change your attitude?
- Verse 6:
- what does it mean to hunger and thirst?
- what might cause us to lose our appetite for God, and the things of God?
- how can that be remedied?
- Verse 7:
- what is mercy?
- what is the condition on us being shown mercy?
- what if we don’t feel merciful?
- Verse 8:
- what does a pure heart look like?
- how can you have a pure heart?
- what does it mean to see God; is that a promise for now or for the future?
- Homework: ask the Lord to show you any areas in your life where there needs to be an ‘attitude adjustment’, and follow that up with a commitment to let Him do that work with you and for you.
Study based on Gordon’s sermon: Jewish Feasts Part 4 – Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur)
Reading: Leviticus 23:26-32
- Leviticus 16 contains instructions for the priest on the Day of Atonement. Why do you think Aaron needed to make atonement for himself before making atonement for the people? (see vv 11–14). How is this step different from when Christ performed His Atonement? (Hebrews 9: 6-15)
- Why did Aaron need two goats? (see vv. 6–10). How do both goats (the one used for the offering and the one used as the scapegoat) represent Christ and His Atonement? (see vv. 20–22).
- Using Hebrews 10 vv1-18 compare the work of the High Priest with that of Christ in achieving atonement.
- Discuss the effects of Christ’s finished work of Atonement, past (sins forgiven), present (no condemnation) and future (We shall be like Him).
This term’s prayer pointers:
- Give regular thanks for answered prayer;
- Pray that The Lord will build His Church at New Connexions: spiritually, physically and numerically;
- Seek the Lord for direction as to outreach in the year ahead.