"You Can Count on Me" - Bruno Mars Sermon Texts: Mark 14 & John 21
IN A NUTSHELL - People disappoint us! Period… And we have disappointed others. But Jesus, though he will never give us everything we want, will not let us down. You can always count on Jesus to see through the circumstances, provide what is essential, receive us just as we are, AND refuse to leave us where he found us!
ICE BREAKER – Without naming names, describe a time when you felt betrayed by someone close to you and how it affected your relationship with that person. If you are brave enough, share a time when you were the one who let someone else down and hurt them by something you said or did (or didn’t do).?
CONNECTING TO THE TEXT
- What are the pros and cons of being the type of person to be bold in your commitments like Peter? (e.g. First one to step out in faith- Mt. 14:28, and first one to step out in failure- Mt. 14:30.)
- List the ways Peter fails in following Jesus in the New Testament. (doesn’t let children come to Jesus –Mk 10:13-14, doesn’t want Jesus to wash his feet – Jn. 13:8, wants to worship Elijah and Moses on the mountain – Mt. 17:4, falls asleep during prayer time – Mk 14:37, sinks after walking on the water – Mt. 14:30, cuts off Malchus’ ear – Jn. 18:10, denies Christ 3 times – Mk. 14:72, doesn’t believe Jesus is resurrected at first –Mk. 16:11-13, shows favoritism to Jewish Christians in Jerusalem – Gal. 2:11-14)
- In what way did Jesus make a special point to restore his relationship with Peter? Mk. 16:7
- Thinking about Peter’s betrayal, what meaning or significance, if any, do you think there was in how Jesus phrased this exchange? (Asking 3 times “Do you love me?”)
REFLECTING UPON OUR LIVES
- Have you ever made a bold promise to God about something in your life? ( A behavior, a habit, a goal, a mission, finances, purity, substance abuse, gossip, forgiveness, ministry involvement, etc.) Were you able to keep it? If so, what details came together so that you succeeded? If not, what happened that caused you to fail?
- Knowing that Peter was restored by Christ after all he did wrong, can you draw comfort that Christ can restore you after all you’ve done wrong?
CONNECTING WITH THE WAY WE DO CHURCH
- If we are to follow Jesus’ example, what should be our response when others hurt and betray us? Discuss some practical ways to do this.
- What can you do to restore that relationship and show grace to them? Think of ways to build bridges, rather than burn them.
- Take some time to pray for one another and encourage one another to receive God’s forgiveness and to forgive others who have hurt you as well.
NEXT WEEK – Over the next two months we will see the growth, challenges and successes of the early Church, with particular focus on any place that a family is spotlighted. Another element of spiritual authority will be addressed on 2/26. Holy defiance is boldness without arrogance and always seeks to avoid crossing God’s line of authority. For next Sunday read Act 9 and Acts 16. Be prepared to discuss how Saul was different once converted and became known as “Paul.”