Community Group Questions 12/11/11

Sermon Title: The Luminary, Part 2: Luminous Main Text:  John 1:4-8

Topics:

  • The light came into the world, and had witness that He was the true light.  A witness is important, because it is evidence that something is legitimate.
  • This seems ironic, because when a light comes on in the darkness, it seems like it shouldn’t need corroborating evidence.  When a light comes on in the darkness it is obvious to everyone.
  • Throughout Jesus’ ministry people kept asking for proof or a sign or a witness that He was the Messiah.  He told them that there were many witnesses: John the Baptist, the scripture, the signs He was doing, God the Father.  But we see that those signs were not enough for them, because they didn’t want to believe.  After He fed the 5000+, the next day, they asked for a sign, that they might believe.
  • The Bible tells us, it will always require faith to believe in Jesus.  God designed it that way.
  • Faith is not the absence of all doubt, that would be knowledge.  For something to require faith, it by definition requires a willful leap.
  • Christians should not be afraid or ashamed if a doubt creeps in.  They should push through with faith.  But that doesn’t mean blind faith.  We can seek out answers because God has provided those witnesses to confirm our faith.
  • For those who are on the fringes with doubts, coming near the light will reveal some of the motives as to why some reject the prospect of faith.
    • disappointment from life that is blamed on God
    • negative experiences with religion
    • don’t want to give up control of life
    • don’t want to give up something I like in my life
  • Some great resources if someone in a CG comes is struggling with doubting their faith:
    • The Case for Christ, Lee Strobel
    • The Case for Faith, Lee Strobel
    • The Reason for God, Tim Keller
    • What’s So Great about Christianity, Dinesh D’Souza
    • Evidence that Demands a Verdict, Josh McDowell

Key Questions:

  • Read John 1:4-8. John through his book shows us that there were many witnesses to Christ, but people still didn’t believed in Him. Why do you think they didn’t believe?
  • Read Hebrews 11:1. How is faith different from knowledge?
  • Billy Graham said, “Can you see God? You haven't seen him? I've never seen the wind. I see the effects of the wind, but I've never seen the wind. There's a mystery to it.” What are some other common everyday things, we exercise faith in?
  • What do you think is the biggest thing that makes people doubt the claims of Christ?
  • What from your own life has given you confidence that Jesus is Who He said He is?
  • What other things have you found that have convinced you that Jesus is who He said He is?
  • What has been the biggest form of doubt you have had to overcome? How did you overcome it?
  • Why do you think a Christian might be ashamed of and hide their doubt?
  • When is a time recently that you have been tempted with doubt?
  • What are some practical things we can do when we are struggling with doubt?
  • What have been some good resources that have helped you with doubt?

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