BEFORE YOU GATHER
- Familiarize yourself with this Group Study Guide.
- If you missed it, CLICK HERE to watch the weekend sermon.
- Read Mark 5:21-43
- Sit in prayerful silence with God for a while, and ask the Holy Spirit if there is anything that he wants you to share during your group’s time together.
RESOURCES FOR FURTHER GROWTH & DISCIPLESHIP
- (Video Resource) Read Scripture: Mark, The Bible Project
- (Video Resource) The Gospel According to Mark, The Bible Project
- (Commentary) Mark for Everyone, by N.T. Wright
- (Commentary) NIV Application Commentary, by David Garland
Opening Prayer: (1-5 minutes)
In light of what God is saying through this week’s message, here’s some suggestions of how your group can invite God into your time together.
Consider praying one of the following:
- A prayer of thanksgiving for the incredible sacrifice Jesus has made on our behalf.
- A prayer for understanding of how we should respond to such a sacrifice.
- A prayer for wisdom to better understand what Jesus means when He says, “This is my body, broken for you,” and “This is my blood of the New Covenant.”
- A prayer for God’s Spirit to be present, guiding, encouraging, correcting, and interceding.
Quick Connection: (5 minutes)
Our story in Mark 14 is about extravagant acts of worship and sacrifice. When have you made a sacrifice for someone? When has someone made a sacrifice for you?
Large Group Discussion: (30 minutes)
This weekend’s message came from Mark 14. If everyone has a Bible, let's go there together.
- In Mark 14 we read of the extravagant act of worship performed by an anonymous woman. In this over-the-top act of worship, this woman gave 100% of the most valuable thing she had and, in doing so, surrendered her security. Her act of worship was an act of complete sacrifice.
- Reflect on your personal worship experiences. Which experiences feel the most authentic? (i.e.: singing, dancing, giving generous gifts, offering precious time, etc…?) What acts of worship make you feel most connected to God?
- Are there ways that you can push the boundaries of those acts of worship? How you do those things in a more extravagant or over-the-top way?
- Pastor Steve highlighted the harsh reaction of the observers.
- Why do you think the Christ followers in the room reacted so negatively to the woman?
- Have you ever seen someone react negatively to an act of worship? Do you ever find yourself reacting negatively to someone else’s worship? In your opinion, what thoughts, feelings, or beliefs may motivate those reactions?
- What promises and truths does the Bible give us that you could use to fight those negative reactions to genuine worship?
- Pastor Steve taught that it was this woman, not the disciples, who had recognized the Holy Moment of this gathering. He asked, “What holy moments have I missed?”
- What changes could you make to your daily rhythm that would free you to tune into the holy moments that occur throughout your days?
- How might a willingness to worship extravagantly posture us to notice and live in the Holy Moments during our days?
- Pastor Steve also suggested that an equally important role in worship maybe rising to the defense of someone who is recklessly worshiping. How can you support others in their extravagant sacrifices?
CHALLENGE: Don’t let THIS week be the same as every other week of the year! Find Jesus, bring Him your most generous worship this week, linger in His presence. This is the week for your worship to cost you something. Figure out what that looks like.
- As Jesus prepares to eat the Passover with His disciples, he does something astonishing. Jesus redefines the bread and the wine. He says, “This bread is my body” and “This cup is my blood of the new covenant.”
As you enter into this last part of the discussion, consider allowing yourself to sit with the scriptures. Read Mark 14:22-24 and review these points from this weekends sermon. Journal, listen, pray, cry, (or don’t cry). Simply allow the Holy Spirit to be fully present as you follow Jesus command to “remember.” Ask Jesus how you can respond in extravagant worship this week.
Jesus' Sacrifice as Bread:
- From now on when you eat this bread remember Me.
- The matzo is unleavened (no yeast) because yeast represents sin - and I’m sinless.
- The matzo is striped because my body will soon be striped.
- The matzo is pierced because I will be pierced.
Jesus' Sacrifice as Wine:
- The Son of God was at Mt Sinai bringing in the OLD Covenant and now He is headed for Mt Calvary to bring in the NEW Covenant.
- The blood of Christ spilled to atone for our sin.
- The blood of Christ shed to break every bondage, setting us free.
- Jesus, by His blood, purchases a better covenant at Calvary than Sinai could ever offer.
HE has rescued us, HE has redeemed us, HE has saved us, HE has made us His own people.
CLOSING PRAYER (5-15 minutes):
In light of what God is saying through this week’s message, here’s some suggestions of what your group could talk about with God in prayer.
Ask God how can you respond to Jesus extravagant sacrifice this week with an extravagant act of worship.