Sermon by Dr. E. Dale Locke
Series:  Beautiful, Week 2 – “Our Best Play”

  1. Go around the group and have each person share an example out of their own life of something that was good news for them – either recent or in the past.
  1. When a person shares good news with another person, how are they likely to talk about it? Describe the kinds of words they use, their attitude, and their demeanor.
  1. Read Romans 10:13-15: “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can anyone preach unless they are sent?  As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”
  1. The word “gospel” means “good news.” Why is the message of Christ’s gospel good news?  What is good about it?
  1. Why do Christians often talk about the Christian faith as if it weren’t good news?

     6.  Read Psalm 32:1-2: “Blessed is the one whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered. Blessed is the one whose sin the LORD does not count against them and in whose spirit is no deceit.”

The Psalmist expresses deep gratitude that God forgave his sins. Often our gratitude for God’s forgiveness fades over time, and we begin to take it for granted.  Why is that?  What are some ways to keep that gratitude alive in our hearts?

  1. Read Colossians 2:13-14: “When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross.”

What do you notice in these verses?  What do these verses say about what Jesus did for us?

  1. Jesus was willing to be sacrificed in our place, so we no longer need to offer animal sacrifices like Jewish people did in the Old Testament. But the Bible speaks of us offering a sacrifice of praise.  How do we do that?
  1. Read Matthew 22:34-40: “Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’  All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

Jesus made it clear that the most important things God wants us to do are to love God and to love people. If Christians were to do better at living out these two commandments, what would be the impact on unbelievers?

  1. Why don’t we do these two things very well?
  2. Think of a person you know who loves God well and loves people well. Describe that person. What are some things they do, and what is it like to be around them?

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