BEFORE YOU GATHER
- Familiarize yourself with this Group Study Guide.
- If you missed it, CLICK HERE to watch the weekend sermon.
- Read Mark 1:1-13, 21-27; Mark 5:1-20.
- 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.
Let’s begin our journey into 2018 together in prayer. Let’s ask God to give us an open heart and mind to all that He has for us this year, that He would use us to encourage and strengthen each other, and use us to draw others to take their next steps with Jesus. Pray that our study in the Gospel of Mark would bring the Great News of Jesus to us and everyone around us!
Quick Connection: (5 minutes)
Have everyone take 30 seconds each to share a phrase or a moment from this weekend’s message that is still resonating with them. You also have the option to say “Pass.”
Large Group Discussion: (30 minutes)
This weekend’s message came from Mark 1:1-13, 21-27 and 5:1-20. If everyone has a Bible, let's go there together.
- As we begin our study of the Gospel of Mark, we learn that the author, Mark, had served both the Apostle Paul and the Apostle Peter, and had deserted Paul in a time of need. And God still used Mark to write one of the four gospels. Have you ever run from a difficult thing that God was asking you to do? Share a time when you ran and He faithfully welcomed you back and restored you.
- Pastor Steve taught us that failure doesn’t disqualify you for later greatness; it prepares you for greatness to serve Him. It’s what you do AFTER you stumble that defines you. Have you found this to be true in your life?
- In Mark 1:9-13, we read that, from the very start of His ministry, Jesus identified Himself with repentant sinners when He was baptized (even though He was not a sinner) and was tempted for 40 days in the wilderness. How does it help you to understand how much Jesus relates to and loves us?
- Mark 1 and 5 both recount stories of Jesus driving out demons, demonstrating that the demons recognized Jesus and were afraid of His authority and power. Ultimate Good and Evil are not equals (different than what we see in stories and movies). Evil is no match for Good, so we don’t have to be afraid. Does this change how you view the GOOD news of Jesus when it encounters evil at work in our world?
- When Jesus saves us, we have a story to share that will bring others to Jesus. What is your story of being set free? What has Jesus done for you? Who in your life needs to hear your story?
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.
As we close our time together, let’s pray for a boldness in this year. Pray that God would give us confidence in Him to speak and act with His authority over evil, over sickness, and help set people free. Let’s ask for a new revelation of how powerful Jesus really is and what He wants to do among us.