Y – The Practice of Kingdom Building

///Y – The Practice of Kingdom Building
Y – The Practice of Kingdom Building2017-03-30T17:07:01+00:00
Study Explanation
Key Scripture
Discussion Guides
Growing Exercises
Recommended Reading

Explanation

In Matthew 6:10, Jesus defines God’s Kingdom as where God is king and his will is done.  Technically speaking then, kingdom building is any activity that leads others to follow God as king, or any activity that facilitates God’s will on earth.  Thus, the scale of the Kingdom of God is quite large as it encompasses any activity that facilitates God’s will on earth.  Furthermore, the section on the “Kingdom of God” explores more of the scope and scale of the Kingdom and how to build it.  This section entitled “Kingdom Building” will focus more on the first part of the definition: leading others to follow God as king.  This is a needed and natural extension of the section on the “Kingdom of God” because God’s heart is for people.  He created us for fellowship with him.  I believe the macro theme of scripture is “I will be your God and you will be my people.”  God loves people and desires to bring us into fellowship with him.  Thus, this section will cover what is often referred to as evangelism and missions.  Do we have a responsibility to lead others to God?  How do we do that?  Is not God working to this end as well?  How do we cooperate with him in this endeavor?  How does the kingdom grow in this way?  Does the scripture give instructions or principles to help us accomplish this task?  These are the questions and topics that we will explore in this section.

KEY SCRIPTURES

Key Scriptures

Key Scriptures are designed to give a biblical overview of the topic in question.  They are extremely valuable for gaining an immediate general understanding of what the Bible teaches on a given subject.  Key Scriptures are the first place you should explore when starting a new subject.  They can be discussed individually, in part, or in whole.  Generic inductive Bible study questions are provided to assist you in your discussion.  Key Scriptures are also good for memorizing and reference.

People are lost without God

Isaiah 59:2 – But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear. NIV

1 John 1:8 – If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. NIV

See also Ezekiel 18:20, & Romans 3:23

Jesus offers genuine life

John 10:10 – I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. NIV

John 14:6 – I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. NIV

Acts 4:12 – Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved. NIV

See also Psalm 16:11, & 1 Timothy 2:5-6

Christians are called to lead others to God and life

Matthew 4:19 – “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.” NIV

1 Peter 2:9 – But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. NIV

See also 2 Corinthians 3:6 and 1 Peter 3:15

Christians are called to build God’s Kingdom

Matthew 6:33 – But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. NIV

Matthew 16:19 – I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” NIV

See also Matthew 10:7, & Luke 12:32

God is actively advancing his Kingdom

Matthew 11:12 – From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven has been forcefully advancing, and forceful men lay hold of it. NIV

Luke 11:20 – But if I drive out demons by the finger of God, then the kingdom of God has come to you. NIV

See also Matthew 13: 31-31; & 25:34

The gospel is our message

Ephesians 6:19 – Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel. NIV

Revelation 14:6 – Then I saw another angel flying in midair, and he had the eternal gospel to proclaim to those who live on the earth — to every nation, tribe, language and people. NIV

See also Mark 16: 15-17, & Acts 10:36

Our lives validate our message

Philippians 1:27 – Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ. NIV

1 Peter 2:12 – Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us. NIV

See also 2 Corinthians 9:13

Inductive Bible Study Questions

to be used with individual Key Scriptures

  • What is the primary point of this passage?
  • How does this passage challenge us?
  • How does this passage comfort or encourage us?
  • What does this passage teach us about God?
  • What spiritual insights are found in this passage?
  • What are the personal & spiritual implications of this text?
  • What does this passage ask or require of us?

Inductive Bible Study Questions

to be used with individual Key Scriptures

  • What is the primary point of this passage?
  • How does this passage challenge us?
  • How does this passage comfort or encourage us?
  • What does this passage teach us about God?
  • What spiritual insights are found in this passage?
  • What are the personal & spiritual implications of this text?
  • What does this passage ask or require of us?

DISCUSSION GUIDES

People are Lost without God

Y1 – Missing the Kingdom – Matthew 6:10

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Kingdom of God, Lordship, Heaven, Blessing

  1. According to the passage, what one place does the kingdom definitely exist?
  2. What other place can the kingdom possibly exist?
  3. Why does the text indicate the kingdom is always present in heaven?
  4. What condition must be met for the kingdom to exist on earth?
  5. If God is the king and his kingdom is where his will is done, then what is God’s will?
  6. Describe the character and nature of God.
  7. What qualities do you most appreciate about God?
  8. What would a place be like where these qualities are experienced in their perfection?
  9. What would a place be like that is absent of all of the various qualities that define God and flow from his person?
  10. Do you believe people would rather experience a place or state where God, his will and his qualities are fully expressed or a place or state that is absent of these qualities… explain?
  11. How and why do people both desire and resist God’s kingdom on earth?
  12. Why would Jesus ask us to pray for his kingdom?
  • Approach all scripture prayerfully open
Rating: 4.0. From 2 votes.
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Y2 – He Carried our Sin – Isaiah 53

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Sin, Cross, Jesus Sacrifice, Judgment, Salvation

  1. Who is this prophecy speaking about?
  2. How does it strike you that this passage was written hundreds of years before Jesus?
  3. What event is the passage describing?
  4. What words does the text use to describe the guilt those being saved?
  5. According to the text, what is the fate of these people?
  6. Why does the text indicate they are deserving of judgment?
  7. Do you believe that everyone is guilty of turning away from God at one time or another as verse 6 indicates?
  8. Is judgment still being expressed and is justice being done?
  9. Who carries the punishment for the people?
  10. What does the text say is the result of this act?
  11. What is the benefit for the people?
  12. What happens is no intercession is made?
  13. How do the people stand before God?
  14. How would you describe God’s feelings towards us based on this passage?
  • Approach God’s Word with humility, honesty and teachability
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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Y3 – Rejecting Life – Romans 6:23

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Sin, Eternal Life, Salvation, Spiritual Life

  1. Describe the difference between a wage and a gift.
  2. According to the text, what have we earned?
  3. How did we earn this; what did we do to deserve such a wage?
  4. What are we given?
  5. Did we do anything to deserve this gift?
  6. What does it mean to you that God gives life?
  7. What is life in God like?
  8. How does the fact this life is eternal magnify the gift?
  9. How does the text say we receive this gift; how does it come to us?
  10. Is it possible to reject a gift?
  11. Is it possible to reject God’s gift of eternal life?
  12. If we reject Jesus and his gift of eternal life; what, according to the text, are we left with?
  13. Why do so many people insist on what they have earned rather than what God has given?
  • These questions are only suggestions, allow the Holy Spirit to be your guide
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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Y4 – Choosing Darkness – Ephesians 5: 1-18

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Kingdom of Darkness, Greed, Immorality, Light, Choosing God

  1. What ideas are being contrasted in this passage?
  2. Describe the kingdom of light.
  3. Why do you suppose it is called the kingdom of light?
  4. Is this a synonym for the Kingdom of God… explain?
  5. Describe the kingdom of darkness?
  6. Why do you suppose it is called the kingdom of darkness?
  7. How is the kingdom of God defined (See Matthew 6:10)?
  8. How do people seek God’s kingdom?
  9. How do we seek the kingdom of darkness?
  10. Which kingdom do immoral and greedy people seek?
  11. Is verse 5 prescriptive or descriptive?
  12. How and why does God allow us to choose the kingdom we inhabit?
  13. Do you believe that on judgment day God only recognizes or validates the choices we made while on earth?
  • These questions are simply a foundation for you to build upon
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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Jesus Offers Life

Y5 – The Good News of the Kingdom – Matthew 9: 35-38

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Good News, Kingdom of God, Jesus King, Religion

  1. What is the good news of the Kingdom of God?
  2. What is the Kingdom of God (See Matthew 6:10)?
  3. How is it that Jesus could definitely say the kingdom has come upon them?
  4. How and why is Jesus (Hint… Jesus is the king) able to enact God’s will and usher in his kingdom?
  5. What proof does God give that Jesus is able to manifest God’s will: his love, grace, peace, mercy and grace?
  6. If Jesus uses the terms ‘sheep’ and ‘shepherd’ in a religious context, how does he describe the people’s religious leadership and subsequent relationship with God?
  7. Why would his message have been considered good news to the people?
  8. Why is Jesus and his message such a breath of fresh air?
  9. Do you believe the message of Jesus and his kingdom is good news today?
  10. Why does the logic flow of the passage naturally lead to Jesus calling others to share this good news?
  11. Why do some people believe that Jesus and his kingdom are real, but never tell anyone or make any effort to build the kingdom?
  • Create your own study by adding and subtracting questions as needed
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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Y6 – Sheep of the Good Shepherd – John 10: 1-18

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Dependence, Following Jesus, Spiritual Life, God’s People

  1. Why does Jesus call his people sheep when some view sheep as a derogatory term?
  2. Is this a statement about the nature of people or about the relationship he desires to have with his people (See Psalm 23)?
  3. How does this image of the Good Shepherd support the macro narrative of scripture: “I will be your God, you will be my people?”
  4. List the various ways this passage describes how Jesus feels about his sheep?
  5. What is Jesus referring to in verse 11 when he says he lays down his life for his sheep?
  6. What is Jesus referring to in verse 17 when he says that he not only lays down his life, but takes it up again?
  7. What does the text indicate is the benefit of being part of Christ’s flock?
  8. What does “life to the full” mean to you?
  9. How does the text indicate we become part of Christs flock?
  10. What do verses 1 and 9 indicate about those who are not of Christ’s flock?
  • Your questions are probably better than mine
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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Y7 – The Secret to Eternal Life – John 3: 16-18

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Eternal Life, Judgment, Condemnation, God’s Love

  1. Why might some people think Jesus came to condemn the world?
  2. Do people today ever have the impression that Jesus is about condemnation and judgment? Is this idea biblical?
  3. Where do people get ideas like this?
  4. With what fate does Jesus contrast eternal life in this passage?
  5. From what you know of the scriptures, what is implied and involved in this concept of perishing?
  6. Which side of the equation does Jesus seek to influence on our behalf: condemnation or eternal life?
  7. In what way is this life Jesus came to give conditional?
  8. What does the text say we must believe to gain eternal life?
  9. What does it mean to believe in him: that he is God, that he died for our sins, that he can remove our sins, that he is the way to eternal life, that he is the way to abundant life, some, or even all of the above?
  10. Is eternal life a quantitative, qualitative statement, or both?
  11. What is Jesus referring to when he says that he gave his one and only son?
  12. What does this passage reveal about the kind of love God has for us?
  • Spend time with the questions prior to leading a group or coaching time
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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Y8 – Everlasting Life – Revelation 21: 1-4

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Eternal Life, Heaven, Beauty, Bride of Christ, God’s People

  1. Which part of this passage are you most looking forward to in eternity?
  2. What does the idea of the New Jerusalem being a bride beautifully dressed for her husband speak to you?
  3. How beautiful must something be for God to call it beautiful or for him to make a special attempt to make it beautiful?
  4. This passage uses a wedding metaphor; how and where do we see other wedding metaphors in the Bible to describe the relationship between God and his people?
  5. What does the wedding metaphor reveal about the kind of relationship we will have with God at that time?
  6. Describe the old order that has passed away?
  7. How much of this world’s brokenness, pain and suffering is caused by sin either directly or indirectly?
  8. What is implied by the idea that there will be no more death, mourning, crying or pain?
  9. Does this passage imply there will be no more sin?
  10. What would it be like to live in a world with no sin?
  11. How is verse 3 a consummation of God’s ultimate kingdom and his design for people from the beginning of creation?
  12. Do you agree with the author that this idea is the metanarrative of scripture: “I will be your God and you will be my people?”
  13. Why is this kind of relationship with God the most enriching and satisfying relationship a person can have?
  • Interrogatives are keys that unlock wonderful secrets 
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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Christians are Called to Lead Others to God and Life

Y9 – The Main Thing – 1 Corinthians 3: 1-9

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Spiritual Leadership, Unity, Ministry

  1. Do Christians sometimes have this tendency to latch on to various leaders, ideas and fads rather than keeping our focus on Christ… explain?
  2. Does this passage appear to you to be an early attempt for Christians to fracture or denominationalize?
  3. In your opinion, are the things that typically divide Christians substantive, a distraction, both, or neither?
  4. Paul may have had some genuine differences with Apollos, why does Paul not take this opportunity to lobby and bolster his position?
  5. What does Paul teach in this passage about where our true focus should lie? What is Paul trying to communicate when he refers to both himself and Apollos as mere servants?
  6. According to Paul, who is the real power behind all ministry?
  7. Where does this leave all people regarding their role in the kingdom?
  8. Do you believe as it says in verse 5 that each person has been assigned a task?
  9. Why is this task of leading people to life in the kingdom more important than our differences?
  • Be like a detective who interrogates scripture 
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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Y10 – Salt and Light – Matthew 5: 13-16

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Witnesses, Evangelism, Light

  1. How is verse 16 the key to how Jesus intends we understand the metaphors in this passage?
  2. What kind of good deeds do you suppose cause others to praise our Father in heaven?
  3. Describe someone you know who has this effect on others.
  4. Salt preserves, flavors and causes thirst; which of these effects do you think Jesus was referring to?
  5. Do you agree with the following statement: darkness begets darkness and light begets light?
  6. Describe deeds of darkness. Describe deeds of light.
  7. Is the light of which Jesus speaks the gospel, love, mercy, grace, truth, or something else?
  8. How do we know from this passage that light definitely has a moral or active component?
  9. How do we know from scripture that light also speaks of truth and the gospel (See John 1 and John 8:12)?
  10. How are the gospel and the ethics of the gospel merged in the life of an individual?
  11. What exactly does it mean to lead others to the light?
  • The insight is found in scripture; questions are simply tools to mine the ore
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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Called to Build God’s Kingdom

Y11 – Sowing the Gospel Seed – Luke 8: 4-15

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Evangelism, Gospel, Forgiveness, Grace, Heart

  1. When verse 11 calls the seed the word of God, can we assume this includes the gospel: forgiveness and grace available through Jesus and his death on the cross… explain?
  2. Who scatters the seed? Who is the farmer (Mark 4: 26-29; 1 Corinthians 3:6 & 9:11)?
  3. How do those who hearts are like the path respond to God’s Word or the gospel?
  4. Have you met others who seem to be resistant to God’s Word?
  5. How do those whose hearts are thorny soil respond to God’s Word or the gospel?
  6. Have you met others who allow the desires of the world to choke out spiritual things?
  7. How do those whose heart is the rocky soil respond to God’s Word or the gospel?
  8. Have you met those who wither away spiritually because they never seem to find deep roots in God?
  9. How do we recognize those whose hearts are good soil?
  10. Is it the farmer’s job to discern soils and only sow in good soil?
  11. Was this even possible when sowing by hand in a day and time when there was neither farm machinery nor herbicides?
  12. Can the farmer even find good soil considering that he doesn’t know where a path might develop in a freshly tilled field, nor where all the stones are, nor where thorns or brambles may spring up?
  13. If it is a given that in the parable that even the most diligent farmer cannot help but scatter seed on a variety of soils, then what is the point of the parable?
  14. Why is it the farmer’s job to scatter as much seed as possible?
  15. What does this parable teach us about our responsibility to scatter seed today?
  • Follow the lines of curiosity 
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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Y12 – Witnesses for Christ – Acts 1:8

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Witnesses, Mission, Evangelism

  1. Is this passage prescriptive or descriptive; in other words, is it a command, a promise, or both?
  2. What is a witness of something?
  3. What is a Christian witness?
  4. Do people always believe witnesses?
  5. Why is it hard to refute a witness?
  6. What pattern is demonstrated by the geography mentioned in the passage?
  7. What does this pattern teach us about our responsibility to be witnesses?
  8. What is our Jerusalem?
  9. Why is it important to be a witness in our Jerusalem?
  10. Why is it important to be a witness to the ends of the earth (See Matthew 24:14; Revelation 14:6)?
  11. Many people feel incapable of being a witness for Jesus, how do we know that we can do it?
  12. Respond to the following statement: ‘all Christians are witnesses, they determine if they are good witnesses or poor witnesses.’
  13. What does a good witness look like?
  • Group leaders may wish to consult a commentary for background information 
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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Y13 – Into all the Earth – Matthew 28: 18-20

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Mission, Evangelism, Promise, Power, God’s Presence

  1. Is this passage prescriptive or descriptive; in other words, is it a command, a promise, or both?
  2. Where is the command? Where is the promise?
  3. What exactly is the nature of the command in this passage?
  4. Do Christians ever confuse making converts with making disciples?
  5. What is the difference between a convert and a disciple?
  6. Does the passage give us any clue about how to make disciples?
  7. How do we know we are included in this command and that it was not just given to the disciples?
  8. This passage is called the Great Commission; how long is this Great Commission good for?
  9. When is this Great Commission fulfilled?
  10. Is this Great Commission for individuals or for the church as a whole?
  11. Is every Christian called to participate in the Great Commission?
  12. Is every Christian called to go?
  13. What should the attitude of the average Christian be towards the Great Commission?
  • Seek to connect the dots with other scriptures and Bible content 
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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The Kingdom Grows as People Come to Christ

Y14 – Growing the Kingdom – Acts 8: 12-13

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Jesus King, Kingdom Growth, Evangelism

  1. What is the Kingdom of God (See Matthew 6:10)?
  2. Who is the king of the kingdom?
  3. According to this passage, how do people enter the kingdom of God?
  4. What does baptism represent (See Romans 6: 1-4)?
  5. According to verse 12, what is it that precedes baptism?
  6. Does the passage give an indication of the focus of their belief?
  7. How is the kingdom and the gospel related to one another?
  8. Do people ever attempt to grow the kingdom without introducing people to the king?
  9. Why is it impossible to grow the kingdom without increasing allegiance to the king?
  • There are no greater tools for effective Bible study than humility, honesty, and diligence
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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Y15 – The Gospel of the Kingdom – Colossians 1: 9-14

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Light, Kingdom of Darkness, Gospel, Good News

  1. Which two kingdoms are being contrasted in this passage?
  2. According to verse 13, who is the king of the kingdom?
  3. Does verse 14 give us any indication about how we enter the kingdom?
  4. Why do we need to be rescued from the kingdom of darkness?
  5. Why can we not save ourselves from the kingdom of darkness?
  6. According to verse 9 what is spiritual wisdom and understanding?
  7. What does God’s will have to do with the kingdom (see Matthew 6:10)?
  8. What does verse 10 teach comes once we understand God’s will?
  9. How is the gospel presented in this passage (the gospel being the message of salvation and grace through Jesus)?
  10. According to this passage, how are the gospel and the kingdom related to one another?
  11. The word gospel means good news; why is the message of Jesus and his kingdom good news?
  • You are responsible for your level of engagement
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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God is Actively Growing his Kingdom

Y16 – God of the Harvest – Mark 4: 26-29

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Evangelism, Kingdom Growth, Faithfulness

  1. What aspect of the kingdom is Jesus talking about in this passage?
  2. Why should the harvest, or kingdom growth, concern us?
  3. How does the parable assume that citizens of the kingdom desire a harvest?
  4. What is man’s part in the harvest?
  5. What real world kingdom activities correspond to man’s part in the harvest?
  6. What is God’s part in the harvest of wheat?
  7. What does this teach us about leading others to the kingdom of Jesus?
  8. What is our responsibility in leading others to Jesus?
  9. What is God’s responsibility?
  10. How do people sometimes try to take responsibility for God’s part in the process?
  11. Does it comfort or reassure you in some way to know that God is building his kingdom and that you do not have to shoulder the responsibility for that?
  • Go beyond the obvious by avoiding “Yes” or “No” answers
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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Y17 – The Growth of the Kingdom – Matthew 13:33

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Kingdom Growth, Evangelism

  1. Describe the kingdom of God (See Matthew 6:10).
  2. What aspect of the kingdom is this parable taking about?
  3. How important do you think kingdom growth is to God?
  4. Is God’s kingdom a physical kingdom or a spiritual one?
  5. How does yeast work in a lump of dough?
  6. What does this comparison to yeast teach us about the qualities of the kingdom?
  7. What qualities of the kingdom naturally spread from heart to heart?
  8. Yeast works in secret and unseen ways, how is God’s kingdom similar?
  9. How can we tell when God has silently captured someone’s heart?
  10. How do we sometimes over estimate our role in leading others into God’s kingdom?
  11. How do we sometimes under estimate our role in leading others into God’s Kingdom?
  • Think before answering
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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The Gospel is our Message

Y18 – I am Not Ashamed – Romans 1: 16-17

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Gospel, World, Boldness, Faith, Evangelism

  1. Why might someone be tempted to be ashamed of the gospel today?
  2. How does the world work to subtlety and not so subtlety be ashamed of Jesus and his gospel?
  3. What is Paul’s rationale for not allowing the world to sour his identification with Jesus and his gospel?
  4. How does Paul define the gospel in this passage?
  5. How do we gain a righteousness from God (See Romans 3: 21-26)?
  6. Faith requires trust; what exactly are we trusting in?
  7. Why is faith in Christ for salvation through grace to remove sins a message we should be sharing with others?
  8. What does it say about someone who believes others are lost, spiritually dying, and going to hell while remaining silent about the gospel or good news that would save them?
  9. Do you honestly feel like Paul or do you sometimes hesitate to share the gospel with others because the world has made you self-conscious?
  10. What can we learn from Paul about being bolder in sharing Christ?
  • Thoughtful silence is the soil of epiphany
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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Y19 – Paul’s Approach to Sharing Jesus – 1 Corinthians 2: 1-5

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Evangelism, Humility, Faith, Gospel, Grace

  1. Why do most Christians struggle to share their faith with others?
  2. How does this passage address and reassure many of these concerns?
  3. Why do many Christians feel pressure when sharing their faith?
  4. Does this passage remove that pressure?
  5. Does Paul view making converts as his responsibility?
  6. Who does Paul view as the real power behind turning the hearts of people towards God?
  7. Why do people feel pressure to change other’s hearts regarding Jesus?
  8. Does this passage impact how we relate to people?
  9. What does Paul mean when he says he knows nothing except Jesus and him crucified?
  10. Why does Paul place so much trust in the message of the gospel?
  11. How do Christians today seek to use earthly wisdom to lead others to Christ?
  12. How is Paul’s approach different?
  13. What can we learn from Paul about sharing Jesus?
  •  Seek Nuance
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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Our Lives Validate the Gospel

Y20 – Living the Gospel – 1 Thessalonians 2: 1-12

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Evangelism, Witnesses, Good Deeds, Service, Integrity

  1. How would you describe Paul’s attitude towards those with whom he shared Jesus?
  2. List the various ways Paul describes his behavior in this passage.
  3. What does Paul mean when he says that “as apostles we could have been a burden to you?”
  4. What does it look like when a Christian leader becomes a burden to those he or she is supposed to serve?
  5. Describe why Paul felt his behavior enhanced his credibility as a messenger of the gospel?
  6. Describe why felt his behavior enhanced the credibility of the gospel itself?
  7. Do you agree or disagree: how we share is as important as what we share?
  8. Why is it vital for the life of the messenger to be consistent with the message?
  9. How effective is the message of the gospel when those who wield it have questionable motives or morals?
  10. Explain your response to the following statement: ‘when people know you are a Christian, you are a witness 24/7 whether you wish to be or not.’
  • Be sure to explore all the resources for each doctrine, virtue, and practice
Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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Y21 – The Shining Stars of the Kingdom – Philippians 2: 14-18

Key Words: Kingdom Building, Joy, Service, World, Witnesses, Sacrifice

  1. What is causing Paul in the passage to rejoice and be glad?
  2. List the various ways Paul hints at his service and selflessness in the passage.
  3. Why does he rejoice in such efforts?
  4. List the various contrasts in the passage.
  5. What causes Christians to be blameless, pure and without fault in our relationship with others?
  6. Describe the attitude this represents.
  7. Why would such people shine like stars among a “crooked and depraved generation?”
  8. What does this image convey regarding how others view righteous and godly people?
  9. In what context does verse 16 say we shine like stars?
  10. How do our lives and relationships enhance our ability to shine like stars and hold out the word of life?
  11. What image comes to mind when Paul indicates he is poured out like a drink offering?
  12. Why is it all worth it to Paul?
  13. What is it that makes the suffering and sacrifice that often comes with life in Christ well worth the sacrifice?
  • Remember there are additional studies in the Key Scriptures section
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GROWING EXERCISES

  1. Learn to naturally and effectively share the gospel. The truth is that while effective evangelism does not necessarily involve tracts and canned presentations, we should be able to communicate how to become a Christian when the opportunity presents itself.  This is when tracts such as “Four Spiritual Laws” or “Steps to Peace with God” can be helpful.  Programs such as “Evangelism Explosion” or other training seminars can also help people become comfortable with sharing their faith.  Ask your pastor or a Christian friend which approach they recommend.  Use this guide to learn a basic gospel outline and principles needed to share with someone how to become a Christian.
  1. Share your faith. Once you have learned how to share with someone how to become a Christian, begin praying for an opportunity to tell someone else.  In fact, as Christians, we should always be on the lookout for opportunities to share the good news of Jesus with someone else.  Pray for God to open hearts and doors for the message of Christ, and for the courage to faithfully share when that door is open.  Debrief and discuss your efforts with your Christian friend.
  1. Develop a prayer list of people you suspect do not have a relationship with Jesus. Pray regularly for God to move in several ways in their lives.
  1. Pray for opportunities to build a closer relationship with them
  2. Pray for opportunities to serve and demonstrate the gospel to them
  3. Pray that God would soften and open their hearts towards God
  4. Pray that they would become spiritually aware and understand the gospel
  5. Pray that others would share the gospel with them
  6. Pray for opportunities for you to share the gospel with them
  7. Pray that God draw their hearts towards him
  1. Interview someone who you know is a good evangelist. Invite them to coffee or lunch and ask the following questions.
  1. What led you to make sharing your faith a priority in your life?
  2. What is the hardest part about sharing your faith?
  3. What is it like to lead someone to Christ?
  4. Can you explain your general approach in how you share with others?
  5. Do you believe this is something I can do?
  6. What advice and/or tips can you give me about sharing my faith?
  7. What resources do you suggest regarding sharing my faith?
  1. Volunteer at a Billy or Franklin Graham Crusade as a counselor. You will receive great training in how to lead others to Christ as well as numerous opportunities.  It really is an amazing experience!
  1. Volunteer for a local ministry or mission opportunity such as feeding the hungry, ESL, Senior Care ministry, etc… Use this ministry as a platform to build relationships with people and share your faith.  Local missions and ministry is a great platform because spiritual dialogue is a natural extension of the setting.  For example, would you mind if I shared with you why I do this ministry?  Another conversation starter is to say, “I do this because I want to share God’s love.  Yet, what I do for you is nothing compared with what God has done for you.  Would you mind if I told you about that?  Another conversation starter is to ask to pray for needs in people’s lives.  When finished, simply ask if you can share about the one to whom we just prayed and how we can know he loves and cares about us.  See what I mean?  The context is ripe for sharing.  In fact, ministry without sharing Christ is incomplete.  We must give the gospel along with whatever aid we offer.
  1. Participate in a mission partnership in your church. Go on an overseas trip or even commit long term to a local partnership.  Be intentional with your efforts regarding the kingdom.  The idea is to build kingdom efforts into your life.  It is important to develop our passion and heart for kingdom ministries.  Approach your experience not just as a ministry opportunity, but as a learning exercise.  Ask God to show you where you are gifted along with where and how you can best contribute to the kingdom.  Commit to make mission a regular part of your life.
  1. Develop a new mission partnership for your church. Many churches struggle to reach out beyond themselves.  It is often difficult for pastors to commit large amounts of energy to developing new mission partnerships without broad support from the congregation.  However, once leadership rises from within the congregation pastors can easily come alongside, support, encourage, equip and promote.  In fact, your pastor may be the best source for where to look for a new mission partnership if you do not already have one in mind.  Another way to find a good partnership is to ask Christian friends what partnerships they are involved in.  If something sounds good, discover how you can go on their next trip.  Go on several trips and vet several different mission organizations or projects prior to choosing which one you desire to participate in.  It is highly recommended that prior to starting any new mission partnership for your church that you read ‘When Helping Hurts’ by Corbett and Fikkert.  It is hands down the most helpful resource for church mission partnerships.
  1. Learn about unreached people groups. A great place to start is to google GSEC (Global Status of Evangelical Christianity).

Following this link…

http://public.imb.org/globalresearch/Documents/GSECOverviews/2015-01_GSEC_Overview.pdf

As you familiarize yourself with the countries and people groups needing to be reached with the gospel take the following steps.

  1. Begin praying for the nations and various people groups by name
  2. Ask God to show you how you can be a part of reaching the nations
  3. Discover which of these people groups may live in your area
  4. Discover who is reaching out to interested people groups
  5. Pray for the mission leaders reaching out to various people groups
  1. Adopt an unreached people group. Churches and individuals are beginning to adopt unreached people and effectively reach them for Christ.  Once you familiarize yourself with various people groups ask God to reveal a people group you can help reach.  Perhaps this is a people group with populations living near you.  Perhaps this is a group in a country where you have a natural connection or affinity.  Perhaps this is a group others you know desire to reach.  God gives a passion to reach various peoples in different ways.

The first thing you will want to do is to share with your church leadership what you desire to do and share your passion, vision and desire to do whatever is necessary to reach these people.  Begin to read and study regarding how to effectively engage and reach unreached people groups.  Read the various mission books in the suggested reading list starting with Radical, Church Planting Movements and T4T.  Seek out partnerships and alliances through your denomination and mission groups working in that region.  Gather a team around you for support and encouragement as together you develop a strategy to engage your people group.  Chances are you will find someone else already targeting this group and you can cooperate with them.  Do your homework, build a team, determine a strategy and faithfully execute that strategy.  You must note that any strategy to reach an unreached people will be a long term strategy that will involve numerous visits, relationship building, ground coordination, as well as a strategy to congregationalize and multiply new converts.  Again, such an effort typically involves cooperation with others.

RECOMMENDED READING

  1. Living Proof by Jim Petersen
  2. The Master Plan of Evangelism by Robert Coleman
  3. Evangelism Handbook by Alvin Reid
  4. Evangelism is… by Dave Earley and David Wheeler
  5. Learning Evangelism from Jesus by Jerram Barrs
  6. The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren
  7. Missionary Methods: St. Paul’s or Ours by Roland Allen
  8. T4T by Ying Kai
  9. Radical by David Platt
  10. When Helping Hurts by Steve Corbett and Brian Fikkert
  11. Church Planting Movements by David Garrison
  12. Indigenous Church Planting by Charles Brock
  13. Perspectives on World Christian Movements by Ralph Winter and Steven Hawthorne
  14. Serving with Eyes Wide Open by David Livermore
  15. The Shaping pf Things to Come by Michael Frost and Alan Hirsch