Ice Breaker (optional – choose one below)
- Have you ever re-gifted something?
- What is the coolest thing you have found in an attic or basement?
- Each election season – millions of people associate themselves with a personality and as a result of their association they will be stereotyped in any number of ways. More often than not, these stereotypes are false labels used to paint the ‘other’ party in an unfavorable light. Have you ever been concerned about how people might think differently about you as a result of who you were politically affiliated with?
Sometimes hand-me-downs are good. Antique furniture. Vintage clothing. Your cousin Ralph’s awesome vinyl collection. But no one wants to be hated — especially hate that belongs to someone else. Jesus says that we can expect the world’s second hand hate as we follow Him and share His message.
What stood out to you from this weekend’s message?
How did the songs we sang relate to the message?
Right or wrong, who we choose to associate with, will influence other people’s perception of us. Have you ever been treated a certain way (good or bad) because you were associated with someone else?
What does the Bible say?
Read John 15:18-27
- Who would want to persecute Christians?
- What can we expect from the world’s system?
- Why would the world treat Christians in this way?
Apply the Message
- Have you ever noticed how people who spend time together start to talk, act and sometimes even look like each other? Why do you think that is?
- As we continue to grow in our relationship with Jesus – we can expect that as outsiders watch our community – they will more and more see Christ’s characteristics.
- If Jesus lived and worked in your context, how do you think He would relate to modern “haters?”
- What is the biggest change you can make right now to help you to love people where they are and encourage them to grow in their relationship with Jesus?
- The final verse we looked at this week was an instruction that Jesus gave his disciples (and to us) – we must share willingly about the hope we have in Jesus Christ. As a group, brainstorm a list of ways that our relationship with Jesus impacts us. We need to be ready to give a response for the hope that is in us! (1 Peter 3:15)Your group’s list might include “small” things like: not needing to control or worry about the future, having a guide for healthy relationships, having healthy boundaries between work and family or could include “heavy” things like being empowered by the Holy Spirit to live a life that was impossible before God. The important thing is that we grow in our understanding that God’s relationship with us has an impact on every part of our lives. If we don’t see how God practically matters to us today it will be hard to share that with others!
Challenge: Try to have a list that is twice as long as the number of people in your group today.
Tweet this: There’s a big difference between picking a fight and enduring persecution #BookofJohn @get_hope
Tweet this: Living in this world and loving the things in this world are not the same thing #BookofJohn @get_hope
Tweet this: Christians today must think through their cultural position more carefully than at any other point in US history #BookofJohn @get_hope