09-02-2018

09-02-18 West

Dr. E. Dale Locke

Sermon: How We Grow

  1. Talk about what kinds of changes and adjustments you are making in your life as you head into the fall of 2018 (back to school routine, new group activities, work responsibilities, etc.)
  2. Read John 9:1-16, 25

As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”

“Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him. As long as it is day, we must do the works of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work. While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”

After saying this, he spit on the ground, made some mud with the saliva, and put it on the man’s eyes. “Go,” he told him, “wash in the Pool of Siloam” (this word means “Sent”). So the man went and washed, and came home seeing.

His neighbors and those who had formerly seen him begging asked, “Isn’t this the same man who used to sit and beg?” Some claimed that he was.

Others said, “No, he only looks like him.”

But he himself insisted, “I am the man.”

10 “How then were your eyes opened?” they asked.

11 He replied, “The man they call Jesus made some mud and put it on my eyes. He told me to go to Siloam and wash. So I went and washed, and then I could see.”

12 “Where is this man?” they asked him.

“I don’t know,” he said.

13 They brought to the Pharisees the man who had been blind. 14 Now the day on which Jesus had made the mud and opened the man’s eyes was a Sabbath. 15 Therefore the Pharisees also asked him how he had received his sight. “He put mud on my eyes,” the man replied, “and I washed, and now I see.”

16 Some of the Pharisees said, “This man is not from God, for he does not keep the Sabbath.”

But others asked, “How can a sinner perform such signs?” So they were divided

 

25 He replied, “Whether he is a sinner or not, I don’t know. One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see!”

 

  1. Is there any significance in the phrase “As he went along…” in the first verse of this scripture passage? Explain your answer.

 

  1. Dale indicated that Jesus’ ministry during the 3 years he walked here on earth comprised of 3 main activities: Preaching, teaching and healing. Discuss where you recognize each of these actions taking place in this passage.

 

  1. Why do you think some people believe that difficulties or infirmities are the result of sin in the individual’s life (or their parent’s lives)?

 

  1. Talk about Jesus’ response to their question, in verses 3-5: “Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him. As long as it is day, we must do the works of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work. While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”

 

  1. How does an infirmity, difficulty or challenge in life display the works of God? Can you share a time when this happened in your life or the life of someone you know?

 

  1. Talk about verse 5 of this passage: While I am in the world, I am the light of the world”. Where in today’s world do you see God’s light of the world? Talk about a practical way you, or your group together, can “…do the works of him who sent me” to display the light of God in the world.

 

  1. Share your thoughts and feelings when you read Jesus’ method for healing this particular blind man, in verses 6-7: After saying this, he spit on the ground, made some mud with the saliva, and put it on the man’s eyes. “Go,” he told him, “wash in the Pool of Siloam” (this word means “Sent”). So the man went and washed, and came home seeing.

 

  1. What does this part of the story teach us about doing our part in allowing God to heal us?

 

  1. Is there something God is instructing you to do so that you can experience his healing? Share with your group if you are willing, and seek accountability to act on his instructions.

 

  1. Re-read John 9:16: 16 Some of the Pharisees said, “This man is not from God, for he does not keep the Sabbath.”

But others asked, “How can a sinner perform such signs?” So they were divided.

How does this passage illustrate the lack of faith of the Pharisees? What were the Pharisees’ expectations of a Messiah that Jesus was not living into? How can we avoid making the same error that the Pharisees did in regards to our expectations of who Jesus is?

 

  1. In John 9:25 the blind man responds to continual interrogation from the Pharisees. Read verse 25 again:  25 He replied, “Whether he is a sinner or not, I don’t know. One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see!”

What can you tell from this passage about the faith of the blind man as a result of following Jesus’ instructions to attain his sight? To learn more about his growing faith, read verses 17-24 of John 9.

 

  1. Read this quote from S. Lewis: “I believe in Jesus Christ as I believe that the sun has risen, not only because I can see it, but because by it I can see everything else.” Share your thoughts and feelings as you read this passage. Do you agree with C.S. Lewis? Why or why not?

 

  1. Pray together as a group for each person to tune into what instructions God may be giving to help each of us grow our faith. Share what that instruction is with members of your group for accountability and support, if you are willing.

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