SERMON BASED RESOURCES
Dig into the sermon each week with your life group, spiritual growth partner, or even by yourself! We’ll provide ideas to jump start your group time (Community Building), discussion questions to go deep (Christ Centered Discussion), and ways to apply what you learned throughout the week (Faithfully Following).
We’re trying to encompass the messages from 11/20, 11/22, and 11/27 which will cover the rest of Romans 8 as well as a message from Nancy Moore based on the findings of the all-church survey.
These resources are intended to be used to discuss the weeks of November 20 – December 3. The questions in the Christ-Centered Discussion lean into the message from 11/20 (questions 1-4). The last question (#5) and some of the Faithfully Following elements can help aid a discussion the following week
- Describe one of your best days.
- What are some things you are thankful for at Woodlands? How has God worked through your experiences in his church to transform you into the image of Christ?
Christ Centered Discussion
1. The Story so far … From Timothy Keller’s book Romans 8-16 for You, “how can a Christian face the sufferings and temptations of life with overwhelming confidence, and a deep assurance that all the strife is more than worthwhile?”
The three sermon points could be so helpful in wrestling through this one: The Creation groans in frustration. We groan in anticipation. The Spirit groans in cooperation. There is a reality to face (we still live in a fallen world) and yet we have sure hope and help.
2. This major section of Romans (Chapters 5-8) started with our final hope (5:1-11), and now finishes emphasizing hope. Recall the meaning of “hope” from 5:2, 4-5. Why do you think God saved us “in this hope”, rather than giving us our full inheritance of resurrection glory immediately? (see Romans 8:24-25) Consider what waiting in hope accomplishes in us.
3. From the sermon, we heard that the Spirit is groaning in cooperation for us. Have you experienced feeling too weak to pray with words? How does it encourage you that the Spirit intercedes for you?
Read also Romans 8:34 and consider how Christ is now interceding for you. And remember Romans 8:15, where we are crying out to our Abba Father (daddy!). What encouragement do you draw from our triune God’s full participation in your prayer life?
4. Pastor Dave encouraged us to trust that the Spirit will help us navigate the futility and messiness of this life and help us grow in excitement for the one to come. Do you have a spiritual discipline or practice that opens you to the movement of the Spirit of God? How does this practice help you trust the Spirit’s movement and power in your life?
Get intensely practical here. Talk about the habits that are shaping your life. And how are they shaping your life? As a group of people seeking to faithfully follow Jesus, talk about how you are placing yourself in the pathways of grace for God to do his work in our lives. Also talk about areas where you need to grow in your trust of what He’s doing (Romans 8:28) – how can you grow in your trust? Pray into that!
5. Romans 8 begins with “there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (v.1) and ends with no separation “from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord” (v.39). What comfort do these truths bring to you in your life right now? In the past? As you look toward the future?
The fact that there is no condemnation is a legal term – justified – we do not have to pay the penalty for what our sinful actions require. Christ has done that. However, that doesn’t remove the guilt or shame you may feel as a Christ-follower when you fail. And yet this chapter culminates in the truth that there is no separation from his love. This is an opportunity to lean into the truth of the gospel and apply it to the past and present, and pray into future circumstances.
6. Engage The Word: This will conclude the study of Romans for 2022. How has your reading motivated you towards Christlikeness and a yearning for God? As we head into Advent, choose scripture that will help you fix your eyes on Jesus. How can our group help one another faithfully follow Jesus?
*Download the Resource Guide above for some helpful leader notes (included in the PDF).
Dinnertime Discussion: What frustrates you the most about living in a fallen world? How can Romans 8:22-25, 28 help you during times of trial?
See also I Peter 1:6; 5:10; Revelation 2:10; II Corinthians 4:17. Note that “good” in v. 28 does not mean earthly comfort, but refers to conformity to Christ (v.29), a closer fellowship with God, bearing good fruit for the Kingdom, and final glorification.
Developing Disciplines: Pick one of your favorite hymns (Great is Thy Faithfulness, How Great Thou Art, Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus, Amazing Grace…or pick your own). Spend time listening to this hymn and really meditate on the lyrics as you worship God and give Him thanks.
Practicing Prayer: From the message given on November 27 by Nancy Moore, what can you be giving thanks to God for how he worked in this last season? And where do you feel led to be praying for this church body? Make a list of each and return to it often in the next few months. Feel free to add to that list!
Gospel in Everyday Life: In Romans 5-8 Paul rehearses gospel blessings and reminds us of future glories awaiting believers in heaven. Make a list of blessings and trials that the Lord has used and is using in your life to point you to the hope of eternity. Share this with someone (in your life group, spiritual growth partner, or friend).
On your smartphone, long press this image to download and set as your background image (if it doesn’t download the current verse, try clearing out your cache).