Sermon Based Group Homework
For the message on May 15, 2022
Passage: Acts 19:1-7
In part 4 of our Upstream series, Mike reinforced three foundational teachings of the New Testament about coming to faith in Jesus.
GETTING TO KNOW YOU
Describe the moment you turned from your sin and placed your faith in Jesus to forgive you and lead your life. (Allow time for many to share.)
LET’S GO DEEPER
1. The disciples of John the Baptist were sincere yet were still lost and separated from God. They were religious and had good intentions, but they missed Jesus and what He did for them on the cross to pay for their sins. What do the following passages say about being religious in place of knowing Jesus personally?
2 Timothy 3:1-5 (NLT2)
1 You should know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times. 2 For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred. 3 They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good. 4 They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God. 5 They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. Stay away from people like that!
Matthew 23:27-28 (NLT2)
27 “What sorrow awaits you teachers of religious law and you Pharisees. Hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs—beautiful on the outside but filled on the inside with dead people’s bones and all sorts of impurity. 28 Outwardly you look like righteous people, but inwardly your hearts are filled with hypocrisy and lawlessness.
James 1:26-27 (NLT2)
26 If you claim to be religious but don’t control your tongue, you are fooling yourself, and your religion is worthless. 27 Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.
What are some ways people today rely on “religion” instead of a relationship with Jesus to make themselves OK with God? Why do you think they settle for religion over relationship?
2. After the disciples of John the Baptist come to faith in Jesus, they received the Holy Spirit. What do the following passages teach us about the indwelling of the Spirit in the lives of believers?
2 Corinthians 1:21-22 (NLT2)
21 It is God who enables us, along with you, to stand firm for Christ. He has commissioned us, 22 and he has identified us as his own by placing the Holy Spirit in our hearts as the first installment that guarantees everything he has promised us.
Romans 8:9-11 (NLT2)
9 But you are not controlled by your sinful nature. You are controlled by the Spirit if you have the Spirit of God living in you. (And remember that those who do not have the Spirit of Christ living in them do not belong to him at all.) 10 And Christ lives within you, so even though your body will die because of sin, the Spirit gives you life because you have been made right with God. 11 The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. And just as God raised Christ Jesus from the dead, he will give life to your mortal bodies by this same Spirit living within you.
Describe how the presence of the Spirit in your heart has made a difference in your life.
3. Once the disciples of John the Baptist heard and believed the truth about Jesus as their Messiah, they went public with their faith. They were baptized after coming to a sincere faith in Christ.
Growing up, what were you taught about the meaning of baptism and when it occurs?
Why do so many believers delay their baptism or refuse to be baptized after they turn to the Lord for salvation?
Why do you think going public with your faith by baptism is important? Why shouldn’t we delay getting baptized?
TAKE IT HOME
1. What is your biggest takeaway from this sermon and study?
2. Do you have any prayer requests for your group?