Leader’s Community Group Study Guide
For the week of March 29, 2020
STF CODE BLUE REVIVAL – EVERY NIGHT 7:30pm
Just as “CODE BLUE” is called to revive a patient from the threshold of death, so it our CODE BLUE to revive, renew, and restore life into all those who are willing to receive the invitation to LIVE. Join us each night online at stfchurch.com or on FB at STF Church to hear a message of LIFE and to live life abundantly!
The STF Go Team Trailer will be parked in front of our Ballast Point Campus. From 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday – Friday, our Go Team leaders will be accepting food donations from our church and community.
Suggested Donation Items:
*14oz boxed cereal
*Instant Oatmeal Individual Packets
*Condensed Soups (10.5 oz cans)
*Canned Pasta (beefaroni, raviolis, spaghetti o’s)
*Peanut Butter (plastic containers NO JARS**
*Boxed Macaroni & Cheese
*Crackers (sleeves, saltines or Ritz)
*Individual servings of fruit
*Squeezable Jelly *NO JARS*
*Basic toiletries (toothpaste, toothbrushes, mouthwash, soap, shampoo, etc.)
1. What is your favorite room in the house and why?
2. Complete this sentence: “Home is where . . .”
3. From this weekend’s sermon, which one statement, point or insight was most helpful, challenging or even confusing to you personally?
1. Read John 14:1-6. What comfort does Jesus offer his disciples?
(When Jesus said, “Let not your hearts be troubled,” He was comforting His disciples, who definitely had troubled hearts. Jesus promises them that His death will not be the end. He explains that His death and subsequent ascension into heaven, rather than leaving them destitute, will bring about two specific blessings: it will enable Him to prepare a place for them, and it will allow Him to send the Holy Spirit to comfort them.
When Jesus said He was going to “prepare a place” for the disciples, He was speaking of His death (John 14:3). His words mean that His death was the preparation for us to receive a place in the Father’s house. It is ready now.
When we face trouble, we may think that, if only Jesus were here with us, in person, standing beside us so that we could talk face to face, we could get through the trial. We are tempted to think that we could trust Him better if He were visible and in the flesh. When we begin to have these thoughts, we need to let our hearts be comforted by two key facts: Jesus has done everything that needs to be done for us to be welcomed into the Father’s house, so we are children of the King; and the Holy Spirit lives in us to help us, if we will yield ourselves to His leading. When we rest in the salvation that Jesus provided and rely on the Holy Spirit to help us navigate the dangerous world around us, we can keep from being troubled in our hearts.)
2. If Jesus is the Way, do you feel you are on a bumpy dead-end street, or on a four-lane highway? Why?
(First, we live in a fallen world in which all of us sin and none of us fully live up to our potential, so we all struggle with feelings of regret and disappointment.Take heart that every stage of life, is ordained by God and part of His good plan for us.
– Realize that God knows all about the past and that He can use us for His glory despite our past sins and failures. Continue to serve the Lord and find joy in Him.
– Determine to imitate Paul’s forward-looking perspective: “Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. All of us, then, who are mature should take such a view of things” (Philippians 3:13–15).
– By God’s grace, persevere in the trial: “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything” (James 1:2–4).
Holiness only results from a right relationship with God by believing in Jesus Christ as Savior (accepting His gift of eternal life). If we have not placed our faith in God’s Son alone to save us from our sins, then our pursuit of holiness is in vain. So, we must first make sure we are born-again believers (see John 3). If we truly are believers, then we recognize that our position in Christ automatically sets us apart from the world (1 Peter 2:9). After all, we have a relationship with the living God! Then we must daily live a set-apart life, not trying to “blend in” with the world, but instead living according to God’s Word as we study the Bible and grow in it.)
3. In light of John 14:6, how would you respond to someone who says, ‘there are many ways to God”?
(Jesus is the only way to heaven. Such an exclusive statement may confuse, surprise, or even offend, but it is true nonetheless. The Bible teaches that there is no other way to salvation than through Jesus Christ. Jesus Himself says in John 14:6, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” He is not a way, as in one of many; He is the way, as in the one and only. No one, regardless of reputation, achievement, special knowledge, or personal holiness, can come to God the Father except through Jesus.
Jesus is the only way to heaven for several reasons. Jesus was “chosen by God” to be the Savior (1 Peter 2:4). Jesus is the only One to have come down from heaven and returned there (John 3:13). He is the only person to have lived a perfect human life (Hebrews 4:15). He is the only sacrifice for sin (1 John 2:2; Hebrews 10:26). He alone fulfilled the Law and the Prophets (Matthew 5:17). He is the only man to have conquered death forever (Hebrews 2:14–15). He is the only Mediator between God and man (1 Timothy 2:5). He is the only man whom God has “exalted . . . to the highest place” (Philippians 2:9).
Jesus spoke of Himself as the only way to heaven in several places besides John 14:6. He presented Himself as the object of faith in Matthew 7:21–27. He said His words are life (John 6:63). He promised that those who believe in Him will have eternal life (John 3:14–15). He is the gate of the sheep (John 10:7); the bread of life (John 6:35); and the resurrection (John 11:25). No one else can rightly claim those titles.)
TAKING IT HOME
- Read 2 Corinthians 5:1-10. How does Paul’s confidence in his future relate to John 14:1-3? What role does faith play in this?
(Paul urged the Corinthians to look forward to their eternal home in heaven, a perspective that would enable them to endure hardships and disappointments in this life. We are also told by Jesus Himself that there are many rooms in God’s house and that He has gone before us to prepare a place for us. We have the assurance of His word that He will one day come back to earth and take us to where He is in heaven (John 14:1-4). Our belief in an eternal home in heaven is based on an explicit promise of Jesus. Heaven is most definitely a real place. Heaven truly does exist.
The apostle Paul exhorts Christians to “walk by faith and not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7). What we see here is a contrast between truth and perception—what we know and believe to be true and what we perceive to be true. This is where the Christian struggle with a lack of faith finds its basis. The main reason why so many Christians struggle with a lack of faith is that we follow our perceptions of what is true rather than what we know to be true by faith.)
2. How does Paul’s “home” affect his daily living (2 Corinthians 5:6-10)? How can knowing the location of your ultimate “home” affect your attitude on aging?
(Paul reminds his readers that followers of Christ must not build their lives around things that have no eternal significance. Rather than pursuing the same things the world pursues, a Christian should focus on the unseen realities such as Jesus and heaven.
We are no longer citizens of the world but apart from it (2 Corinthians 6:14—7:1). We understand that we are a part of a heavenly, God-ruled kingdom. Things of the earth no longer draw us (Colossians 3:2). We don’t fear or over-emphasize suffering on earth or the trials we face (Colossians 1:24; 1 Peter 3:14; 4:12–14), nor do we place importance on things the world values (1 Timothy 6:9–11). Even our bodies and our actions reflect that our minds are no longer conformed to the world (Romans 12:1–2) but are now instruments of righteousness to God (Romans 6:13). And our new kingdom perspective means we understand that our enemy is not the people around us but the spiritual forces that endeavor to keep the people from knowing God (Ephesians 6:12).)
3. How does God’s purpose (2 Corinthians 5:5) apply to a current crisis of yours and how can the group pray for you in light of it?