MEETING #21

I REGULARLY SHARE MY STORY AND GOD’S STORY.

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DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

  1. Why is your sharing your story a powerful witness to those who don’t know Jesus yet?
  2. What is your motivation for sharing the gospel? Does evangelism feel like a religious duty/burden? If so, why do you think you feel this way?
  3. What is the biblical motivation for sharing the gospel (2 Tim 1:8-12)?
  4. Talk about a time you have shared your story with a nonbeliever you knew well. What happened? Why don’t we do this more often?
  5. What obstacles do you have in sharing your story and God’s story? Are these legitimate or are they excuses?
  6. Who is someone we can share our story with before the next time we meet? There is no need to force this conversation, so engaging someone in a spiritual conversation may be your next step.

BIBLE BACKING

2 Timothy 1:8-12

8 Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God, 9 who saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace, which he gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began, 10 and which now has been manifested through the appearing of our Savior Christ Jesus, who abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel, 11 for which I was appointed a preacher and apostle and teacher, 12 which is why I suffer as I do. But I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed, and I am convinced that he is able to guard until that day what has been entrusted to me.

Romans 1:16-17

16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, “The righteous shall live by faith.”

Ephesians 2:1-10

And you were dead in the trespasses and sins 2 in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— 3 among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. 4 But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, 5 even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— 6 and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

Ephesians 6:19-20

19 and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak.

Acts 21:39-22:21

39 Paul replied, “I am a Jew, from Tarsus in Cilicia, a citizen of no obscure city. I beg you, permit me to speak to the people.” 40 And when he had given him permission, Paul, standing on the steps, motioned with his hand to the people. And when there was a great hush, he addressed them in the Hebrew language, saying:

22 “Brothers and fathers, hear the defense that I now make before you.”

2 And when they heard that he was addressing them in the Hebrew language, they became even more quiet. And he said:

3 “I am a Jew, born in Tarsus in Cilicia, but brought up in this city, educated at the feet of Gamaliel according to the strict manner of the law of our fathers, being zealous for God as all of you are this day. 4 I persecuted this Way to the death, binding and delivering to prison both men and women, 5 as the high priest and the whole council of elders can bear me witness. From them I received letters to the brothers, and I journeyed toward Damascus to take those also who were there and bring them in bonds to Jerusalem to be punished.

6 “As I was on my way and drew near to Damascus, about noon a great light from heaven suddenly shone around me.7 And I fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to me, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?’ 8 And I answered, ‘Who are you, Lord?’ And he said to me, ‘I am Jesus of Nazareth, whom you are persecuting.’ 9 Now those who were with me saw the light but did not understand the voice of the one who was speaking to me. 10 And I said, ‘What shall I do, Lord?’ And the Lord said to me, ‘Rise, and go into Damascus, and there you will be told all that is appointed for you to do.’ 11 And since I could not see because of the brightness of that light, I was led by the hand by those who were with me, and came into Damascus.

12 “And one Ananias, a devout man according to the law, well spoken of by all the Jews who lived there, 13 came to me, and standing by me said to me, ‘Brother Saul, receive your sight.’ And at that very hour I received my sight and saw him. 14 And he said, ‘The God of our fathers appointed you to know his will, to see the Righteous One and to hear a voice from his mouth; 15 for you will be a witness for him to everyone of what you have seen and heard. 16 And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on his name.’

17 “When I had returned to Jerusalem and was praying in the temple, I fell into a trance 18 and saw him saying to me, ‘Make haste and get out of Jerusalem quickly, because they will not accept your testimony about me.’ 19 And I said, ‘Lord, they themselves know that in one synagogue after another I imprisoned and beat those who believed in you.20 And when the blood of Stephen your witness was being shed, I myself was standing by and approving and watching over the garments of those who killed him.’ 21 And he said to me, ‘Go, for I will send you far away to the Gentiles.’”

TOOLS

Books

Every Good Endeavor by Tim Keller

Finish the Mission by John Piper

Just Walk Across the Room by Bill Hybels

The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel

Just Courage by Gary A. Haugen

Evangelism Resources

3 Circles Method

This is the method of sharing the gospel we use here at The Heights. It’s not the only way, but it is the way what we train our people in. Skip to to Meeting 19 if you would like to be trained in this sooner. There is an app that goes through the 3 Circles, though there are some minor differences than they way we do it at The Heights. It is called the Life Conversation Guide App. Click here for more info.

How Good is Good Enough by Andy Stanley

Tactics by Gregory Koukl

Texas Baptists Resources: http://texasbaptists.org/ministries/great-commission/evangelism/church-training-and-resources

Romans Road to Salvation: http://www.teenmissions.org/resources/roman-road-to-salvation/

Evangelism Explosion Steps to Life: http://evangelismexplosion.org/resources/steps-to-life/

Example Risks

You want to walk away from your R3 group with an action step every time. These are ONLY examples of an action step. By no means are they required. Please feel free to (and seek to) come up with your own. The goal of R3 is to take realistic steps forward together. Please only choose one step and be prepared to report back to your group on how you did the next time you meet.

  1. Write out your spiritual autobiography. Explain your life before Christ, how He saved you, and how His grace changed and is changing your life. Try to keep it under one page single-spaced.
  2. Engage someone in your Crossroads in a spiritual conversation. Let them know you want to talk about spiritual matters beforehand, pick a topic, and hear what they have to say about it. (Examples: “What is our purpose in life?”, “Do you think God exists? What is God like? Why do you think that?”, or “Why do you think such evil exists in the world?”) After listening, respond with the the Christian view as far as you are able. Pray before and after.
  3. Practice sharing the gospel to one another inside your R3 group. (If you are tracking along with the R3 Meeting Guide, you will have done this already.)
  4. Download the Life on Mission App and use its simple illustrations to share the gospel with someone you know.
  5. As an R3 group, go out to a mall’s food court or somewhere similar with the intention of having a spiritual conversation with them and (optional) buy them a meal. Introduce yourself by saying: “Hi, my name is ______, and I am with a local church and we trying to get people’s thoughts on some big spiritual questions.” Start by asking one of the questions from the Explore God series (click here to see questions) and hearing what they have to say. If you are able, share the gospel with them.