BIG IDEA: Jesus is alive. Simple, yet miraculous and life-giving for his church. Jesus’ church is made up of all those whom he has saved. He lived for his church’s righteousness, died for his church’s sin, and resurrected to eternal life for his church’s salvation, according to God’s definite plan (Acts 2:22-24). Jesus lives to save his church. The call goes out to all: repent (turn) from sin to Jesus for salvation. Jesus saves the religious from their sin of religion, he saves the rebellious from their sin of rebellion, and he saves the ravenous from their sin of ravaging when they turn to him. All those who come to him through repentance and faith are saved from sin and death to freedom and life in Jesus and given power by the Holy Spirit who comes to live inside them. Christians are forgiven in Jesus and given power by the Holy Spirit to live a new life- repenting from sin to Jesus for all their days, witnessing in word and deed about the resurrected and saving Jesus, and calling people to repent and believe on Jesus for salvation. Furthermore, when Jesus saves someone he saves them into his church. The church is likened to a flock of sheep, not lone wolves. We are sheep, Jesus is our Chief Shepherd, and sheep go in a flock.
ACTS 1:1-11 In the first book, O Theophilus, I have dealt with all that Jesus began to do and teach, 2 until the day when he was taken up, after he had given commands through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen. 3 He presented himself alive to them after his suffering by many proofs, appearing to them during forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God. 4 And while staying with them he ordered them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, he said, “you heard from me; 5 for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
6 So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” 7 He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority. 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” 9 And when he had said these things, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. 10 And while they were gazing into heaven as he went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, 11 and said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.” . . .
22 “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with mighty works and wonders and signs that God did through him in your midst, as you yourselves know—23 this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men. 24 God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it. . . .
36 “Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.” 37 Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” 38 And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.” 40 And with many other words he bore witness and continued to exhort them, saying, “Save yourselves from this crooked generation.” 41 So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls.
Q.1 Was there anything from Sunday’s sermon or the big idea that was new to you or had an affect on you? Did you hear anything that raised more questions in your mind?
Q.2 What part of the Bible in Acts 1 & 2 stood out to you the most and why?
Q.3 Which did you/do you most align with:
Religious (like the moral and upright men in Acts 2 that Peter is preaching to),
Rebellious (like the indifferent and disinterested Philippians Jailer- Acts 16:25-33), or
Ravenous (like the Apostle Paul who at one time boldly opposed Jesus- Acts 22:4-16)? Try and be specific.
Q.4 Do you think the world sees Christians as those that have power? (living new lives, seeking new goals, boldly sharing the gospel, sacrificially giving and serving) Explain you answer. If not, why not?
Q.5 Read Isaiah 59:1 & Acts 1:8 and discuss the following: Talk about your old life before Jesus saved you in contrast with your new life in Jesus after he saved you. *The power to live a new life, with new desires, and new affections, and a new identity that is secure in Jesus.
Q.6 Knowing that Jesus has a definite plan and The Lord God calls people to himself of all types, how does that compel you to share the gospel with people and compel them to repent to Jesus for salvation?