Friday, June 27, 2008

The revolution has begun

This week's small group curriculum kicks off a study series of the teachings of Jesus that should take us through most of the summer. We are calling this summer the "Red Letter Summer."

Big Idea:
Jesus came into this world to start a revolution driven by repentance and the changing of the human heart, not by civil unrest or military action. We are called to join the revolution. But be warned, everything about your life will and must change.

Jesus began His earthly ministry with the words, “Repent! For the kingdom of Heaven is at hand.” In other words, people needed to think differently because everything was about to be turned upside-down. Jesus was initiating the greatest revolution ever seen, by bringing the kingdom of Heaven to earth. This kingdom wasn’t going to expand by force, but by the transformation of the human heart. God’s revolutionary agenda is here, and it advances by servanthood, humility, obedience, faith, hope, and love – beginning with the poorest, weakest, and meekest, and growing to become a movement that topples the power structures of this world.

Are you ready to join the revolution? Are you ready to be a citizen of the Kingdom of God rather than this world? If so, here are four Kingdom essentials you must embrace and live-out. First, you must align yourself with Kingdom values. In every facet of life, you must know God’s way and live it. Second, you must accept Kingdom purposes. Your reason for living goes beyond worldly agendas and motives. You were created to love without limitation, to serve without hesitation, to worship without intimidation, and to share the gospel without fear of man. Third, you must embrace Kingdom relationships. You become a member of God’s family, not based on social status or physical DNA, but by choosing to accept and obediently follow Christ. Fourth, you must adopt kingdom priorities. What matters most to God must ultimately matter most to you. This stuff is revolutionary!

Discussion Questions: (read the scripture & discuss)

Matthew 5:3-10
How can we incorporate these kingdom values into our daily lives? Discuss the changes you need to make for this passage to describe you. Encourage each other to go for it, and hold one another accountable.

Matthew 6:33
What happens when we put God’s plans before ours? Share personal experiences.

Romans 12:1-2
How do we change our thoughts and actions to line up with the Kingdom of God? Discuss how reading God’s Word has renewed your minds and changed your thinking.

Taking Action:
  1. Deepen your understanding of God’s Kingdom by reading through the gospel of Matthew with your family or friends.
  2. Memorize the Beatitudes, and begin to implement Kingdom practices. Start by sharing Jesus with others.

Ministry Time

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