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Sermon Questions | Do This Through Me | July 19, 2015

Opener

  • Praise Him for choosing each one of us, for blessing us with the gift of faith in Him, and for justifying and declaring us righteous by the blood of Jesus.
  • Praise Jesus for filling us with the Holy Spirit so we can lean and depend on Him moment by moment and that we are His instrument (His pen) in sharing the Gospel and loving others .

Read

  • Stand and read 2 Cor. 3:1-6

Discuss

The Corinthian Christians are a “letter from Christ” to Paul. They are the result of Paul’s ministry, not written with ink, but heart-changed people by the Spirit of the living God. Paul’s competence (his adequacy, his sufficiency, his enabling) comes from God, not himself. Just like Paul, the Holy Spirit enables each of us as believers to be ministers of the New Covenant as we pray and ask Him to “do it through me.” Jesus is more than a helper. He is the doer, and He does all things well!

  • Discuss the popular thought that “God helps those who helps themselves.” Why is it a false teaching?
  • Share a time when a  “help me” prayer didn’t work for you. Did you turn it over to Jesus and ask Him to do His work through you? If not, what did you do?
  • Share how you are asking Jesus to work through rather than help you.

Closing Prayer

  • Pray for each other, for complete dependence and surrender to the Lord in dealing with whatever your “this” might be.
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Sermon Questions | No Matter What, Use Me | July 12, 2015

Opener

  • What prayer cliché do you use most often?
  • Those of us who are in Christ are blessed in many ways. Share with the group one of the ways you’ve been blessed.
  • Moving away from cliché prayers helps in our personal prayer life. How has this been true in your life?

Read

Acts 4             

Discuss

  • In Acts 4, what did this early church gathering pray about?
  • If they didn’t ask for protection, what did they ask for?
  • What was the significance of the place shaking after they prayed?
  • In Acts 5:40-42, what was the response of the disciples after being flogged (beaten) for their faith?
  • Describe a time when you asked God to use you (rather than protect you). How did He answer your prayer?
  • Discuss the idea of praying for protection being synonymous with praying for an easy Christian life.
  • Why did the disciples trade an easy life for one that would be filled with persecution and difficulty?
  • If we began to pray, “God use me,” how might it change the way we pray for our family, our church, and our nation?

Closing Thoughts/Prayer

If your group is larger, consider forming smaller groups for prayer time. Use this time to pray and ask God to use you rather than protect you.

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Talking to God Without Praying | Blessings in Jesus | July 2015

When someone believes in Jesus as their Savior the following blessings are instantly theirs.

Ephesians 2:8 – We get access to God’s grace

Ephesians 1:11 – We get an inheritance

John 1:12 – We become a child of God

2 Timothy 4:18 – We gain heavenly citizenship

Romans 8:17- We are heirs of God and joint heirs with Jesus

2 Corinthians 5:17 – We become a new creature

Romans 6:4 – We are buried with Him

John 10:28 – We have eternal life

John 14:27 – We have peace with God

John 15:15- We become a friend of God

Romans 4:6 – We receive imputed righteousness

Ephesians 2:6 – We are seated in heaven with Christ

1 John 1:3 – We gain fellowship with the trinity

Luke 7:48 – We are forgiven forever

Romans 8:9 – We are in dwelt by the Spirit

Romans 6:14 – We have victory over sin

Philippians 4:13 – We are given an inner strength from Christ

2 Timothy 1:7 – We have the power of a sound mind

2 Timothy 1:7 – We no longer have a spirit of fear

Ephesians 2:10 – We are God’s workmanship

Ephesians 1:5 – We are adopted by God

Romans 6:22 – We become a servant

Revelation 1:6 – We become priests

Romans 5:10 – We are reconciled to God

1 Corinthians 6:11 – We are sanctified

Ephesians 1:6 – We are accepted with Jesus

1 Corinthians 12:13 – We are baptized into the body of Christ

Galatians 3:27 – We put on Christ

Luke 10:20 – Our names are written in heaven

Titus 2:13 – We have hope in His return

Ephesians 4:30 – We are sealed by the Holy Spirit

1 John 2:1 – We have Christ as our advocate

Philippians 4:19 – Every need supplied by God

Hebrews 13:6 – The Lord is our helper

2 Corinthians 9:8 – We get abounding grace

Romans 8:38-39 – We get eternal love

Colossians 1:12-13 – We are delivered from darkness

Colossians 2:10 – We are complete in Christ

2 Corinthians 1:21 – We are anointed by God

Acts 1:8 – We have the power to witness

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Celebrating Freedom

We just observed Independence Day—a patriotic celebration for the liberties we have in America. I am thankful to be an American.

How did you celebrate? Were there fireworks, flags, picnics, or time with family and friends? Along with these festivities, we remember the sacrifice of others. We take time to reflect and give thanks for those who fought for this country and gave us freedom.
Freedom can be defined as:

  • the quality or state of being free
  • the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action
  • liberation from slavery or restraint or from the power of another: independence

As believers, there’s another freedom we celebrate—freedom in Christ. We’re a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17).

The Holy Spirit enables and helps us experience who we are in Christ. Our freedom is not about us but Christ in us. He removed the restraints we struggle under—like feeling that we’re not enough. Life in Christ isn’t about something we strive for, but something we already have. We are free to be who Christ says we are. That’s our true identity.

To grow in our understanding of our new identity takes faith. We are not passive but active in participating in a relationship with Christ. We choose to believe the truths about who God says we are and reject lies, surrendering to the Holy Spirit’s work and trusting Him to live through us.

Christ paid a sacrifice for this freedom. We celebrate it by allowing Him to live His life through us.

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Sermon Questions | Talking to God Without Praying | July 5, 2015

Opener

Prayer is an amazing opportunity to pause and talk with our precious Savior and creator of the universe. What if we started having really meaningful conversations with Jesus? The reality that Jesus dwells in you changes everything, even our prayers. As you approach today’s sermon questions, ask Jesus to do something new and fresh in your heart.

Read

Galatians 3:13-14

Ephesians 1:3

Discuss

  • How do you normally approach prayer? Is it a conversation or a list of requests?
  • Do you ever find yourself praying the same phrases without thinking about what you are praying? If so, why do you think this happens?
  • Steve mentioned that sometimes our prayers focus on asking God for blessing. What’s behind what you are asking for in prayer?
  • How does knowing the truth that as believers in Christ, we already have every blessing we need change the way you will pray in the future? (Ephesians 1:3)

Closing thoughts/prayer

  • Spend some time this week remembering the fullness of blessings that we have in Christ (scripture references are listed below).

Ephesians 2:8—We have access to God’s grace

John 1:12—We are children of God

2 Timothy 4:18—We have a heavenly citizenship

Romans 8:17—We are joint heirs with Christ

2 Corinthians 5:16-17—We are a new creation

John 10:28—We have eternal life

John 14:27—We have peace with God

John 15:15—We are a friend of God

Romans 4:6—We receive the righteousness of Christ

Ephesians 2:6—We are seated in heaven with Christ

Romans 8:9—We have the Spirit of God living in us

Romans 6:14—We have victory over sin

2 Timothy 1:7—We no longer have to live in fear.

Ephesians 2:10—We are His masterpiece.

  • Ask Jesus what it would look like for you to bless Him this week as you enter into prayer.

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