Go back to normal view
Small Group Notes
Small group notes - Nov 5
Welcome: which of these scares you the most and why: war, earthquake, famine, persecution?
Worship: Sing or listen to a song about Jesus looking after us in difficult times. Examples: Oh God our help in ages past, God my rock. Christ alone, Cornerstone
Pray together for God to teach us from this difficult passage.
Word: Matthew 24: 1-14. Signs of the end of the age.
1. Why were the disciples so excited to see the splendour of the buildings?
2. What do you do and how do you feel when you hear about all the bad things-the troubles, disasters, tribulations.......happening in the world? Do you ever feel like saying, yes, I am living in the last days?
3. Why was the Temple destroyed? What do you think Christianity and Judaism would be like now if it had never been destroyed?
4. According to this passage, what happens when we fail spiritually, then refuse to repent, and our sins accumulate and escalate?
5. Jesus gives us some of the signs that will be warnings of what will come. What are they? What are we to look for? What are we not to look for?
6. Why do you suppose the Jewish groups, even in Roman occupation and impending doom, said the Temple represented God and God would not destroy Himself, so everyone was safe? Where was their trust? Why do people trust in things and not in God?
7. All things in the world will eventually become meaningless and be destroyed; only God will remain, along with those whose faith is in Him. How can your faith be strengthened in this knowledge?
8. If you knew the exact time and day Christ would come, would you be callous, lazy, and unproductive, as history has shown with such groups who think they know? Be honest!
Witness: "And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come." Matthew 24:14
What can you do both as a group and individually to further this?
Small group notes for November 12
Welcome: When you have left a job or a home to go to a new place, what things have you wanted to do or say?
Worship: play some quiet music for the group to listen to while you slowly read out the following meditation:
"A friend recently articulated one of the biggest problems we have in the Church today: ‘We give our problems to God, but five minutes later when he hasn’t done something we can see, we take it back and say “OK, I’ll sort it out myself”. What’s wrong with us?’
As you listen to the music give all the people and situations that come into your mind to God. Try to do the following:
Let go of the things that worry or trouble you.
Release people who have hurt or wronged you.
Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal anything in your life that is hindering your relationship with God or others, and ask for forgiveness.
Have patience in situations where you are unsure what to do.
Trust God to be God."
Word: John 14: 22-29
1. What can those who love Jesus expect (v. 23)?
2. Can one tell by your life that you love Jesus?
3. What is an indication that one does not love Jesus? (v. 24)?
4. Jesus also tells the disciples that He will give to them the Holy Spirit. What does the name Counselor tell us about the Holy Spirit’s ministry?
5. How has the Spirit been your Counselor or Comforter?
6. Why can the world not receive the Holy Spirit?
7. What must one do to receive the Holy Spirit?
8. What else will the Holy Spirit do for us (v 26)?
9. How have you experienced the Holy Spirit in these ways?
10. In v. 27 Jesus says that He will give His disciples (and us) peace. Considering what is ahead of them (Jesus’ arrest and persecution), what do you think Jesus meant when He promised peace?
11. He said He does not give as the world gives. How does the world give? How does Jesus give?
12. In verse 29 Jesus tells the disciples that He is telling them these things now so they will believe later. Has Jesus ever "told" you something that you did not understand so that you might believe at a later time?
Witness: pray for our church that we would be able to share the joy of fellowship with the Holy Spirit with others both inside and outside our congregations.
Small group notes - November 19.
Welcome: Have you ever known someone who was extremely talented but never used his or her talent? How did you feel for and about them for that?
Worship: Spend some time praising and thanking God for all the good things he has given us.
Word: Matthew 25: 14 - 30 The parable of the talents
1. Who do the various characters in the parable represent?
2. How do you think God feels when we do not put to use what He gives us?
3. Do you think the master was being too harsh with his servant? Why?
4. In the parable, the amounts of money were huge. What does it mean to you that God trusts you with His most valuable goods and people? What have you done? What will you do?
5. Do you really believe that real wealth in life is not in money, but rather in relationships and obedience? If not, why? If so, why?
6. How does it make you feel that, when your talents are functioning as they are given to you, you become Christ's hands and feet in the world?
7. The measuring stick that God uses to measure you is not against one another - what someone else has done, but rather what you are capable of. So, how can this motivate you to take the opportunities He has given and make the most of them?
8. How have you misjudged yourself and the opportunities He has given?
9. How does fear destroy your opportunity to be productive?
10. Do you believe it is each Christian's responsibility to find, develop, and exercise the talents and gifts given to him or her? If so, what is in the way from this happening in you and in others?
11. How can you take comfort that God only gives us the opportunities to match the abilities He has given us? How would this help you eradicate your fear?
Witness: What do you believe God has given you? What have you done with it? Where do you invest what He gives you? How do you make it count for His glory?
Small group notes - Nov 25
Welcome: which animals do you prefer - sheep or goats and why? What experience of interaction with either do you have?
Worship: sing or listen to a song about having compassion eg "Make me a channel of your peace" or "with a prayer you fed the hungry
Word: Matthew 25:31-46. The parable of the sheep and the goats.
1. What is the context of this parable: who is Jesus talking to and when?
2. What is the difference between the sheep and the goats?
3. The only difference between the sheep and the goats is what they did and didn't do. Why do you think Jesus makes care for the poor and needy THE issue by which he evaluates his followers in this story – rather than doctrine, personal holiness, or something else?
4. The Bible makes it clear that we can not earn our place in heaven by good works. What is the difference between “salvation by works” and the “good works” God calls us to, as his followers (refer also to Eph.2:8-10 and Jam.2:14-26).
5. Debates occur today about the tension between the spiritual and the social aspects of evangelism. How can we keep both of these important activities in balance?
6. The Bible refers to God’s heart for the poor and the needy frequently. Do you think that this theme is talked about enough in the church or has it been somewhat overlooked?
7. How can we live with a greater awareness that as we serve others, and care for the needy, we are really serving Jesus?
What practical things could each of us do to demonstrate a greater concern for the poor and needy on a regular basis? Is there anything you could do as a group?