Matthew 28:18-20

18 Then Jesus came up and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

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Acts 20:17-38

17 From Miletus he sent a message to Ephesus, telling the elders of the church to come to him.

18 When they arrived, he said to them, “You yourselves know how I lived the whole time I was with you, from the first day I set foot in the province of Asia, 19 serving the Lord with all humility and with tears, and with the trials that happened to me because of the plots of the Jews. 20 You know that I did not hold back from proclaiming to you anything that would be helpful, and from teaching you publicly and from house to house, 21 testifying to both Jews and Greeks about repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus. 22 And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem without knowing what will happen to me there, 23 except that the Holy Spirit warns me in town after town that imprisonment and persecutions are waiting for me. 24 But I do not consider my life worth anything to myself, so that I may finish my task and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the good news of God’s grace.

25 “And now I know that none of you among whom I went around proclaiming the kingdom will see me again. 26 Therefore I declare to you today that I am innocent of the blood of you all. 27 For I did not hold back from announcing to you the whole purpose of God. 28 Watch out for yourselves and for all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God that he obtained with the blood of his own Son. 29 I know that after I am gone fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. 30 Even from among your own group men will arise, teaching perversions of the truth to draw the disciples away after them. 31 Therefore be alert, remembering that night and day for three years I did not stop warning each one of you with tears. 32 And now I entrust you to God and to the message of his grace. This message is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified. 33 I have desired no one’s silver or gold or clothing. 34 You yourselves know that these hands of mine provided for my needs and the needs of those who were with me. 35 By all these things, I have shown you that by working in this way we must help the weak, and remember the words of the Lord Jesus that he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”

36 When he had said these things, he knelt down with them all and prayed. 37 They all began to weep loudly, and hugged Paul and kissed him, 38 especially saddened by what he had said, that they were not going to see him again. Then they accompanied him to the ship.

Luke 9:18-27

  • Can you grow without being uncomfortable?
  • What transformation are you hoping for?
  • What does “losing the couch” look like for you?
  • What does “taking the cross” look like for you?
  • In what way do you need to intentionally deny yourself?
  • What does it look like for you to uniquely love through the cross?
  • How does knowing the outcome help you embrace the weakness of the cross?

Peter’s Confession

18 Once when Jesus was praying by himself, and his disciples were nearby, he asked them, “Who do the crowds say that I am?” 19 They answered, “John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others that one of the prophets of long ago has risen.” 20 Then he said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered, “The Christ of God.” 21 But he forcefully commanded them not to tell this to anyone, 22 saying, “The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, chief priests, and experts in the law, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.”

A Call to Discipleship

23 Then he said to them all, “If anyone wants to become my follower, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow me. 24 For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of me will save it. 25 For what does it benefit a person if he gains the whole world but loses or forfeits himself? 26 For whoever is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of that person when he comes in his glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels. 27 But I tell you most certainly, there are some standing here who will not experience death before they see the kingdom of God.”

Luke 9:18-27

  • Can you grow without being uncomfortable?
  • What transformation are you hoping for?
  • What does “losing the couch” look like for you?
  • What does “taking the cross” look like for you?
  • In what way do you need to intentionally deny yourself?
  • What does it look like for you to uniquely love through the cross?
  • How does knowing the outcome help you embrace the weakness of the cross?

Peter’s Confession

18 Once when Jesus was praying by himself, and his disciples were nearby, he asked them, “Who do the crowds say that I am?” 19 They answered, “John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others that one of the prophets of long ago has risen.” 20 Then he said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered, “The Christ of God.” 21 But he forcefully commanded them not to tell this to anyone, 22 saying, “The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, chief priests, and experts in the law, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.”

A Call to Discipleship

23 Then he said to them all, “If anyone wants to become my follower, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow me. 24 For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of me will save it. 25 For what does it benefit a person if he gains the whole world but loses or forfeits himself? 26 For whoever is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of that person when he comes in his glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels. 27 But I tell you most certainly, there are some standing here who will not experience death before they see the kingdom of God.”

James 5:13-18

What do you fear when you think about confessing your sins to another person?
Can you name your shame to your group?
Can you see the problem behind the problem?
How would it feel to choose healing over hiding?
What do you long for?
How is your group doing in creating a safe place to come out of hiding?
How can they improve?
What would be our one next step to help everyone come out of hiding and into healing?

Prayer for the Sick

13 Is anyone among you suffering? He should pray. Is anyone in good spirits? He should sing praises. 14 Is anyone among you ill? He should summon the elders of the church, and they should pray for him and anoint him with olive oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick and the Lord will raise him up – and if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. 16 So confess your sins to one another and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great effectiveness. 17 Elijah was a human being like us, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain and there was no rain on the land for three years and six months! 18 Then he prayed again, and the sky gave rain and the land sprouted with a harvest.

James 5:13-18

What do you fear when you think about confessing your sins to another person?
Can you name your shame to your group?
Can you see the problem behind the problem?
How would it feel to choose healing over hiding?
What do you long for?
How is your group doing in creating a safe place to come out of hiding?
How can they improve?
What would be our one next step to help everyone come out of hiding and into healing?

Prayer for the Sick

13 Is anyone among you suffering? He should pray. Is anyone in good spirits? He should sing praises. 14 Is anyone among you ill? He should summon the elders of the church, and they should pray for him and anoint him with olive oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick and the Lord will raise him up – and if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. 16 So confess your sins to one another and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great effectiveness. 17 Elijah was a human being like us, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain and there was no rain on the land for three years and six months! 18 Then he prayed again, and the sky gave rain and the land sprouted with a harvest.

Luke 8:40-55

Restoration and Healing

40 Now when Jesus returned, the crowd welcomed him, because they were all waiting for him. 41 Then a man named Jairus, who was a leader of the synagogue, came up. Falling at Jesus’ feet, he pleaded with him to come to his house, 42 because he had an only daughter, about twelve years old, and she was dying.

As Jesus was on his way, the crowds pressed around him. 43 Now a woman was there who had been suffering from a hemorrhage for twelve years but could not be healed by anyone. 44 She came up behind Jesus and touched the edge of his cloak, and at once the bleeding stopped. 45 Then Jesus asked, “Who was it who touched me?” When they all denied it, Peter said, “Master, the crowds are surrounding you and pressing against you!” 46 But Jesus said, “Someone touched me, for I know that power has gone out from me.” 47 When the woman saw that she could not escape notice, she came trembling and fell down before him. In the presence of all the people, she explained why she had touched him and how she had been immediately healed. 48 Then he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace.”

49 While he was still speaking, someone from the synagogue leader’s house came and said, “Your daughter is dead; do not trouble the teacher any longer.” 50 But when Jesus heard this, he told him, “Do not be afraid; just believe, and she will be healed.” 51 Now when he came to the house, Jesus did not let anyone go in with him except Peter, John, and James, and the child’s father and mother. 52 Now they were all wailing and mourning for her, but he said, “Stop your weeping; she is not dead but asleep!” 53 And they began making fun of him, because they knew that she was dead. 54 But Jesus gently took her by the hand and said, “Child, get up.” 55 Her spirit returned, and she got up immediately. Then he told them to give her something to eat.