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Showing posts from January, 2010

The Search to Belong: For Whom Am I Responsible?

Currently, I'm trying to post a few times a week summaries of chapters from books I've read over the past few years. These are the books that have really informed my thinking on discipleship and small groups. Hopefully, they'll provide a good opportunity for you to think through some of these same thoughts.

Today, I'm looking at chapter two from the book The Search to Belong by Joe Myers. This chapter is entitled, "Longing to Belong."

Belonging means different things to different people. According to Myers, "belonging happens when you identify with another entity -- a person or organization, or perhaps a species, culture, or ethnic group." Myers points out that belonging is not necessary reciprocal as Bob may feel he belongs to a group while others in the group may not sense that Bob truly belongs.

In a church setting, people often want to know what it means to "belong". Must one become a member to belong? Do they need to be part of an of…

Chronicles of the Kingdom: LIFEgroup Questions for Exodus 20

Can anyone in the group recite all ten commandments? in order?

Together read Exodus 20:1-17.

Which of the ten is the easiest to obey? Which of the ten is the most difficult?

As a group (or you can assign this to different individuals) go through each of the ten commandments and discuss the following:
What would cause someone to not obey this command?
What is a modern day example of how someone might break this command?How would you rewrite this command in a positive way? (3 and 4 are already positive, so you can just rewrite them in your own words) 1. You must not have any other Gods before me.
2. You must not make any idols or bow down to them.
3. You must not misuse the name of God.
4. Remember to keep the Sabbath holy.
5. Honor your father and mother.
6. You must not commit murder.
7. You must not commit adultery.
8. You must not steal.
9. You must not testify falsely against your neighbor.
10. You must not covet anything that belongs to your neighbor.

What new thoughts do you have about the t…

Chronicles of the Kingdom: LIFEgroup Questions for Exodus 12

What was the worst job you ever had? What made it so bad?

Exodus 12 is about God's rescue of Israel from slavery. If you had been a slave your entire life, what do you think would bother you the most?
I can never do what I want to doMy boss doesn't care about me or my health
All my work is for someone else's benefitThere is no hope for my children's futureRead Exodus 12:40-42. As the people were leaving Egypt, what kinds of thoughts do you think were going through their mind?

The night God freed Israel, he killed the firstborn son of every Egyptian family. The Israelite children were saved if they sprinkled the blood of a lamb on the door. Why do you think God chose a lamb for this symbol?

Read John 1:29 and 1 Corinthians 5:7. Why is Jesus called a lamb? How is the symbol of Jesus as a lamb parallel to the symbol in Exodus 20?

Read Romans 6:16-18

What kind of sins hold people in slavery?

What do you think it means to be freed from sin?

How does someone who is freed from sin…

Why Small Groups? Fellowship.

Currently, I'm trying to post a few times a week summaries of chapters from books I've read over the past few years. These are the books that have really informed my thinking on discipleship and small groups. Hopefully, they'll provide a good opportunity for you to think through some of these same thoughts.

Today, I'm looking at chapter two from the book "Why Small Groups". This chapter is an essay written by John Loftness entitled, "Fellowship Rediscovered."

Fellowship is one of those "Christian" words that we use at church but not really in any other part of life. Often for Baptists, fellowship is tied very closely to food. However, fellowship is a biblical word that can teach us about our relationships if we work to understand what it really means. In this chapter, Loftness writes a few thoughts of definition regarding fellowship. He writes:
"fellowship", as it is found in the English Bible, is a translation of the Greek word…

Chronicles of the Kingdom: Lifegroup Questions for Genesis 12

What are two or three possessions you would never want to part with? Why?

Why is giving things up often so difficult? What are some situations when giving things up is very easy?

Read Genesis 12:1. God tells Abraham (still called "Abram" in this passage) to leave his city, his friends, and his family (each translation differs, but this is a close approximation).

Which of these three do you think would be most difficult to leave (city, friends, family)? Why?

Why do you think God asked Abraham to leave? Why couldn't he have stayed where he was and received God's blessing?

Read Luke 9:57-62. What did Jesus say these people needed to leave behind in order to follow him?

Read Matthew 19:16-22. What did Jesus say this person needed to leave behind in order to follow him?

If Jesus were to interact with people today, what kinds of things do you think he would tell them to leave behind in order to follow him?

What are the things you think God might be telling you to leave behi…

Chronicles of the Kingdom: Genesis 3

Do you like to be flattered? Why or why not?

When is flattery good? When is it bad?

Read Genesis 3:1-5. How did the serpent "flatter" Eve?

In what ways was the serpent's message a "feel good" message?

Read Genesis 3:6-7. Did the serpent's promises come true? Why or why not?

Would you rather have someone tell you the painful truth, or would you rather have them save you the pain by leaving you in the dark? Why?

Read Genesis 3:14-19. What part of these verses is most depressing? Why?

With which of these verses can you identify? How have you experienced the truth of these words?

Most of God's words in these verses are descriptive of different kinds of dysfunction that resulted from Adam and Eve's sin. How have you observed the sin of others (or your own) create dysfunction?

Why do you think God wanted Adam and Eve to know what the results of their choice were going to be? How do you think these words benefited them?

What was God's solution to the dys…