I CAN BE CHANGED
Text: John 20:19-31
Series: Because He Lives

After encountering the risen Christ, the disciples were never the same again. What can we learn from their life transformation?

Discussion Guide 

1) I No Longer Live For Myself, I Live For Christ (19-23)

Name one fear that you have. Why do you fear it? How do you overcome or deal with your fear? Read John 20:19. What were the disciples fearful about? Did they have a good reason to fear? Explain.

When Jesus appeared to them, He said to them, “Peace be with you.” The Bible uses the Hebrew word “Shalom” to refer to the well-being that comes about because we are reconciled to God. This peace does not depend on the absence of conflicts or stressful situations. How does knowing Christ as our Lord and Saviour allow us to have such peace? Read and reflect on Romans 5:1-5. What does the Bible say is the source of our peace? Have you experienced the peace of God in your life recently? How has having the peace of God changed the way you see your concerns and troubles, or the way you prioritise the various concerns in your life?

On seeing Jesus, the disciples’ fear turned to joy (20). What do you think led to the transformation? Jesus then commissioned the disciples to spread the grace of God that they themselves had received (21-23). The disciples after encountering the risen Christ turned from timid men to bold agents of Christ. Today we may not see the physical Christ but we can encounter Him through Scripture and the Spirit, who points us to Him (John 14:26). How can your Life Group encourage one another to go deeper in Scripture to develop the mind of Christ (Philippians 2:5-8)? What are some simple activities you can do together to facilitate a deeper submission to the Spirit, so that you can be led and empowered by Him for life transformation? How would living for Christ’s cause transform your attitude, priorities and decisions? In what way would living for His cause be different from living for your own agenda? How can the Life Group spur one another on to live for Christ?

2) I No Longer Live By Sight, I Live By Faith (24-31)

Share one moment in your life when you doubted God. How did you feel? What went through your mind? What did you do? What made you do it? Was your faith strengthened or weakened after the incident? Why? Thomas, perhaps the greatest sceptic among the disciples, gave the highest confession of Jesus when he saw the risen Lord (28). What does Thomas’ transformation teach you about the power of witnessing Jesus’ resurrection? How does Jesus’ blessing on those who have not seen Him and yet have believed (29) encourage you (1 Peter 1:8-9)?

All of us go through doubts when what we see (or do not see) do not seem to align with what God’s Word says or promises. In such situations, we can choose to abandon faith by refusing to believe God or exercise faith by taking God at His word. Why do you think God can still be trusted despite what we see? How has He proven Himself to be faithful and trustworthy? Since God has the power to raise Jesus from the dead in order to fulfil His promise of sending the Messiah (Acts 2:24-32; 13:32-37), God will also fulfil all of His other promises. Do you agree? Why?

Are you going through a season of doubt now? What are you struggling with? Where can you go to for answers? What are the ways the Life Group can discover these answers together? Wrestling with doubt can build up our faith muscles. Perhaps you are doubting that God will provide for you as you live for Him. Read and reflect on Matthew 6:32-34. Share with the Life Group one source of concern or stress that you currently have. How can you surrender your concerns to God? For those involved in serving God, how have you experienced God’s provision as you faithfully serve Him? Share your story to encourage your Life Group to keep their focus on God even in the midst of doubt. Let’s also take time to pray for one another, that God may meet our needs and lead each of us to be in line with His purpose for our lives.

Reflection Questions 

1) I No Longer Live For Myself, I Live For Christ (19-23)
How can your Life Group encourage one another to go deeper in Scripture to develop the mind of Christ (Philippians 2:5-8)? What are some simple activities you can do together to facilitate a deeper submission to the Spirit, so that you can be led and empowered by Him for life transformation? How would living for Christ’s cause transform your attitude, priorities and decisions?

2) I No Longer Live By Sight, I Live By Faith (24-31)
All of us go through doubts when what we see do not seem to align with what God’s Word says or promises. In such situations, we can choose to abandon faith by refusing to believe God or exercise faith by taking God at His word. What are you struggling with? Where can you go to for answers? What are the ways the Life Group can discover these answers together or pray for one another in seasons of doubt?

I CAN BE CONFIDENT
Text: John 20:1-18
Series: Because He Lives

Beyond being a holiday or a tradition, Easter assures Christ-followers that our faith is not futile and our hope is secure.

Discussion Guide 

1) Jesus’ Resurrection Is The Basis Of My Faith (1-10)

Think of someone you trust. What qualities does he/she possess? What did he/she do to earn your trust? Now think of Jesus. Do you trust Him? What do you trust Him for? What is the basis of your trust?

In 1 Corinthians 15:17, it says that “if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile.”. Why is the Resurrection central to our faith? Why does it matter that the Resurrection is a factual event in history? Today we do not have direct access to the evidence of the empty tomb, but we have the Word that records the events and significance of the Resurrection. Can you recall and share some verses about the Resurrection with your Life Group?

Have you encountered challenges and crises, and felt discouraged and even disillusioned with God when there appeared to be no answered prayers or blessings? In such moments, why do you think it is important to base our faith on the Resurrection, instead of on our experiences and emotions? What difference do you think the basis of our faith will make in how we respond to difficult circumstances?

What promises does Jesus’ resurrection hold for believers? Share some promises from Scripture. If God could raise Jesus from death to life, would He be able to fulfill His other promises? Why do you say so? What does the Resurrection mean to you personally? What is a promise of God you are currently holding onto?

2) Jesus” Resurrection Changes My View Of Him (11-18)

The Resurrection proves that Jesus is no criminal who died on the cross because He did wrong. Instead, He is the Messiah who died on the cross for our sins. He was not cursed by God as many would think (Deut. 21:22-23), but He is the Son of God who died for us and was raised to be glorified.

With this in mind, read 2 Cor. 5:16. Why do you think many misunderstood Jesus during His day, and even today many still misunderstand Him? What was your initial impression of Jesus when you first heard of Him? For instance, did you see Him as a good person, wise teacher or holy prophet? How does the Resurrection elevate your view of Him? If we truly regard Jesus as not just a mere man but as God Himself, how would our response to Him look like (read Rom. 12:1-2)? If we are not living this way today, why?

In a way, the Resurrection renewed Mary Magdalene’s faith. She was overwhelmed with grief at the thought of Jesus being dead and could not recognise Him until He called her name. Are you facing a seemingly hopeless situation now, and nothing could comfort you? Is it causing you to waver or even lose your faith? How does the Resurrection encourage you to renew your faith in Christ? How does it give you the assurance that, no matter what happens, God is in control and He is able to lead and strengthen you according to His purpose?

Jesus’ resurrection and glorification ensure the resurrection and glorification of those who put their trust in Him (1 Cor. 15:20-23, 42-44; 1 Thess. 4:13-16). How does this truth encourage those of us who are facing the uncertainties of life, with death being the greatest uncertainty of all (1 Cor. 15:54-58)?

Reflection Questions 

1) Jesus’ Resurrection Is The Basis Of My Faith (1-10)
In 1 Corinthians 15:17, it says that “if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile.”. Why is the Resurrection central to our faith? Have you encountered challenges and crises, and felt discouraged and even disillusioned with God when there appeared to be no answered prayers or blessings? In such moments, why do you think it is important to base our faith on the Resurrection, instead of on our experiences and emotions?

2) Jesus’ Resurrection Changes My View Of Him (11-18)
What was your initial impression of Jesus when you first heard of Him? For instance, did you see Him as a good person, wise teacher or holy prophet? How does the Resurrection elevate your view of Him? If we truly regard Jesus as not just a mere man but as God Himself, how would our response to Him look like (read Rom. 12:1-2)?