Community Group Leader’s Guide
For the week of April 14, 2019
Please announce this to your group if you meet before Wednesday morning:
This Tuesday at Chapel (8-9) and Wednesday at the Men’s Bible Study (6:45-7:45) we’re going to spend a consecrated time of prayer for our Good Friday and Easter Services. A hot breakfast will be served at both gatherings. Please join us, if you are able.
1. Share with your group an Easter tradition you have in your family.
2. If you could choose, what role would you like to take in a high profile court case (judge, jury, expert witness, prosecutor, etc.)?
3. Looking back at your notes from this week’s teaching, was there anything you heard for the first time or that caught your attention, challenged or confused you?
1. After reading Mark 15:1-20, what three adjectives would you use to describe Pilate in this story?
Pilate repeatedly stated that he found no fault in Jesus (John 18:38; Luke 23:14; John 19:4; Luke 23:22; Matthew 27:24). His problem was that he lacked the courage to stand for what he believed. He wanted to avoid a riot (Matthew 27:24), so he was “willing to content the people”(Mark 15:15). Pilate thought he could avoid making a decision by sending Jesus to Herod, the ruler of Galilee (Luke 16:6-12), but Herod only sent Jesus back after mocking him.
2. Why do the people, after witnessing Jesus’ miracles, hearing his teachings, and praising him with hosannas, now demand that Jesus be crucified?
It’s good to remember that not everyone at Triumphal Entry was celebrating the Lord. Most of the city was puzzled: “When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, ‘Who is this?’” (Matthew 21:10) and the Jewish leaders were indignant (verse 15). Some of the same crowd who shouted, “Hosanna!” may also have been part of the crowd shouting “Crucify Him!” but we can’t be sure. If some people did join both crowds, it may be because they had grown disillusioned with Jesus when they discovered He was not going to set up the kingdom immediately—or perhaps they disliked Jesus’ insistence that they repent. Also, it’s quite possible that the crowd gathered before Pilate at that early hour had been assembled and suborned by the Jewish leaders.
3. Which of the characters in this story can you relate to?
- Pilate – selling short my convictions in exchange for “peace”
- Jesus – acting on my convictions and suffering the consequences
- the crowd – swayed by others
- Barabbas – guilty, yet released
4. Review Mark 15:21-47 and then discuss the following questions. What is significant about the centurion’s confirmation of Jesus’ death? Joseph of Arimathea, a member of the Sanhedrin, took great risks by taking care of the body of Jesus. What kind of man do you think Joseph was?
Jesus’ prayer “Father, forgive them” was answered in the lives of many people. The Roman centurion at the foot of the cross, upon seeing how Jesus died, exclaimed, “Surely this man was the Son of God!” After Jesus’ death on the cross, Joseph, at great risk to himself and his reputation, went to Pilate to request Jesus’ body. Following Jewish custom, Joseph, hurriedly placed Jesus in Joseph’s own tomb, located in a garden near the place of Jesus’ crucifixion. Unbeknownst to Joseph, his choice to put Jesus in Joseph’s tomb fulfilled Isaiah’s prophecy spoken hundreds of years before Jesus’ death: “He was assigned a grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death, though he had done no violence, nor was any deceit in his mouth”(Isaiah 53:9). This is one of the many prophecies that have confirmed Jesus’ identity as the Messiah and Son of God.
TAKING IT HOME
1. When did the Crucifixion begin to make a difference in your own life?
- when I understood my sins were forgiven
- when I felt the peace of God in my life for the first time
- when I was able to forgive others
- when I committed my life to following Jesus
- other: _____________________________
2. When have you been like the soldiers and “played games” at the cross?
- when I am selfish
- when I stray from God
- when I take my faith for granted
- when I don’t take my faith seriously
- other: ______________________________
3. If Jesus came today, who would “crucify” him? What would be the charge against him? Where would you be?
4. What difference does the death of Christ and the forgiveness of God make in the way you live your life today? How can this group pray for you in light of your answer?
The following is to do at home during the week to prepare you for Easter Sunday:
1. Write a note to Jesus expressing your feelings about his crucifixion.
2. Read Mark 15:21-31. What irony do you see in : the sign posted on the cross (v 26)? Jesus being ridiculed for his ability to save others but not himself (vv. 29-32)? What aspect f the crucifixion was the worst for Jesus do you think: The physical pain? Feeling forsaken by God? What does this say about your part in his crucifixion?
3. How was the cry of Jesus (Mark 15:34; Psalm 22:1), the tearing of the temple curtain (Mark 15:38; Matthew 27:51-53; Hebrews 10:19-22), and the faith of the centurion (Mark 15:39) all related?
4. Write a response to the question, “What then shall I do with Jesus?”(Matthew 27:22)
5. Spend time in prayer that you will experience this year’s Easter in a whole new way. Ask God to reveal to you who you need to invite to share the good news of Jesus.
EASTER SERVICES – INVITE YOUR NEIGHBORS, FRIENDS, & FAMILY!
GOOD FRIDAY – 5PM & 7PM at BP
EASTER SERVICE TIMES –
Ballast Point Campus: 8:30, 10:00, 11:30am
Davis Island Campus: 10:30am
Channel District: 11:00am
WAYS TO SERVE
Each CG has the ability to receive a project that they can do DURING their CG time! Just return it back to the Children’s Dept the following Sunday a.m. Lets get WILD and help prepare for VBS KIDS! Email email@example.com to get your craft project to make/cut-out/color/etc. Also, please take peacock feather with something you can contribute to VBS
VBS Into The Wild!
Join us on our adventure Into The Wild? Click one of the buttons below to volunteer for VBS 2019.
UPCOMING MISSION TRIPS
Billings, Montana Missions Outreach Prep. Team (Trip 1)
About: This year STF will partner with GracePoint Church and support them in reaching out to the Billings Heights community by inviting people with door-hangers, hosting a neighborhood block party, helping to lead the GracePoint kids ministry Sun morning as well as the opportunity to get to know Pastor Jim & Brandi Taber on a hiking excursion with them in the scenic mountains of Montana.
Date: June 28 – July 2
Team Leader: Marc Corradino, STF Missions Pastor
Billings, Montana Sports Camp Mission (Trip 2)
About: This year STF will partner with GracePoint Church and help to host a Baseball/Soccer Sports Camp with Score Int. in Billings with Baseball Chapel and a community game included. We will also help GracePoint Church throw a block party that will engage their surrounding community and strengthen relationships there. This will be an incredible time of encouragement and partnership with Pastor Jim & Brandi Taber and GracePoint Church.
Date: August 5 – 9
Team Leader: Pastor JJ Johnson, STF Senior Pastor
“BAMA” Student Mission Trip- Prichard, Alabama
About: Partnering with Light of the Village for a week of working with under-priveleged kids.
Date: June 16 – 22 (Please register for this trip separately on the Events page)
Team Leaders: Charlie Thiemann, STF Middle & High School Director, Ally Richie, STF College & Girls’ Student Director
Guatemala Sports Mission Outreach
We will partner with the “Little Lambs of Guatemala” in sports outreach.
Date: July 20 – 28
Team Leaders: David & Shelby DeVinney, STF Missions Committee Chair
Cuba 2 Becoming 1 Couples Trip
About: STF couples will go to serve alongside 2B1 Cuba Ministries to strengthen marriages and transform lives with the gospel.
Date: Oct 16 – 20
Team Leaders: Pastor Gio & Suzie Llerena, STF Associate & Married Life Pastor
BIBLE VERSES FOR REFLECTION: Matthew 21:10-17; John 12:1-8
Lord God, days before Jesus’ death, your Son sat with Lazarus, whom He had raised from the dead, and ate dinner with His friends. Once again, your Gospel tells us, Martha served, and Mary knelt at Jesus’ feet to anoint Him with costly perfume. The disciple who was about to betray Him said that it was a waste. He didn’t care about the poor, really — he just wanted to fill his own pockets and make Mary feel ashamed.
Lord God, often we cannot discern what is best: when to be busy serving, or when to rest at Your Son’s feet and learn; when to pour out costly perfume for Your sake, even if the world thinks it’s a waste. Give us ears to hear you, eyes to see and a discerning heart to know.
For the sake of Your Son, Jesus Christ,
BIBLE VERSES FOR REFLECTION: Matthew 26:36-46; Hebrews 5:7-9
Dear God, the message of the cross is difficult to take. How can death give way to life? How can weakness be strength? Yet Your Word says that Jesus, being God, took on human flesh and suffered the worst kind of death. How can this be? This message is hard to understand. Your weakness is greater than our strength. Help us to know that none of us can boast before You. It is only in Christ Jesus that we can boast. In His name, we ask You to help our unbelief, that we may love You and walk in the way Jesus taught us.
BIBLE VERSES FOR REFLECTION: Matthew 26:27-56; 1 Corinthians 1:18
Holy Father, we tremble to think that it was one of Jesus’ own friends who betrayed Him — one who sat by Him, who broke bread with Him. Give us strength, we pray, to walk faithfully with Your Son, even when the road we walk is rocky, even when the message of the cross seems like foolishness, and even when we feel betrayed. You, Lord, are always faithful. We stumble. We become lost. But You are steady and sure. Give us the grace to endure our troubles and reveal to us the glory of Your Kingdom. We pray through Your Son, Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, who lives in us.
BIBLE VERSES FOR REFLECTION: John 13:1-17, 34-35
God, You sent Your Son into the world, and before His hour had come, He washed His disciples’ feet. You had given all things into His hands. He had come from You and was going to You, and what did He do? He knelt on the floor and washed His friends’ feet. He was their teacher, Savior and Lord, yet He washed their feet. Holy Spirit, help us learn from His example. Help us do as He has done for us. The world will know we are His disciples if we love one another. Strengthen our hands and our hearts for love and service. Father, keep before our eyes the image of Your Son, who, being God, became a servant for our sake. All glory be to Him who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
BIBLE VERSES FOR REFLECTION: John 18-19; Isaiah 52:13-15; Hebrews 10:16-25
Abba Father, when He was on the cross, Your Son cried out to You, “Why have you forsaken me?” You seemed so far from His cry and His distress. Those who stood at the foot of the cross wondered where You were as they saw Jesus mocked and shamed and killed. Father, we, too, ask where You are when there is trouble and suffering and death, and we cry out to you for help. Be near us and strengthen us so that we may praise You for Your deliverance. Sometimes our lives seem to be a succession of Fridays, and we cannot see what’s “Good.” Teach us to call on Your name as Jesus did. Help us trust in You like little children.
In Your name,
BIBLE VERSES FOR REFLECTION Matthew 17:1-6; Lamentations 3:1-9, 19-24
Lord God, On the Sabbath, Jesus rested. He was in the grave. He had finished His work. To most people’s eyes it looked as if it were all over. He was dead and buried — but only as a seed dies when it is planted in the earth: not to decay, but to spring to new life. Teach us to take refuge in You when we are afraid. Teach us that death is not our end. Teach us to hope always in You and in the Resurrection, the making of all things new.
Through Jesus Christ our Lord,
BIBLE VERSES FOR REFLECTION: Matthew 28; Revelation 5:11-14; Psalm 118:1-2,14-24
Heavenly Father, You loved this world so much that You gave Your one and only Son so that we might be called Your children, too. Lord, help us live in the gladness and grace of Easter Sunday every day. Let us have hearts of thankfulness for Your sacrifice. Let us have eyes that look upon Your grace and rejoice in our salvation. Help us walk in that mighty grace and tell Your good news to the world. Help us be the church for the city. Show us how to glorify Your name in and around South Tampa.
All for Your glory do we pray, Lord
Good Friday services: Ballast Point Campus, 5 and 7 p.m.
Easter Sunday services: BP, 8:30 (East/West), 10, 11:30; DI, 10:30; CD,11