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“The Seen and Unseen Battle” by Pastor Tony

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Life Group Discussion Guide 

PRINTER FRIENDLY VERSION

Thriving in Babylon  Sermon Series
The Seen and Unseen Battle” by Pastor Tony
Leaders, please choose only the best question(s) for your group

November 17, 2019
If you have questions, contact Pastor Ric,

Below are some discussion questions relating to a recent sermon. These are provided so that your Life Group can discuss what was shared. Previous Weeks’ Discussion Guides and Sermon Notes are available through the Sermons under the Resources menu. Click on the sermon series and then the sermon you are interested in.  You will see a paper icon under the sermon title. Click the icon to open the sermon notes. To listen to the sermon, click on the speaker icon.

Summary and Context:  Our series, Thriving in Babylon, is focused on how we can live for God even when the culture around us denies him and belittles/persecutes those who follow him. Daniel, because of his service and confidence in a faithful God, had the privilege of impacting the lives of four different kings and their kingdoms!  He thrived in his faith even in the midst of extreme cultural pressures because of his commitment to and relationship with the living God. As we wrap up this series, we are going to see the reality of spiritual battles within the culture.  These battles, many times, reveal themselves through human conflict, but the source is much more sinister.  Daniel’s story today reveals that sinister side, and its troubling effects upon him.  It also reveals how Daniel dealt with the unseen battle and how God gave him victory.

Sermon Texts:  Daniel 10:1-3, 12, 13; 14-11:1; Hebrews 1:14; Ephesians 6:10-17. 2 Kings 6:11-17

Discussion Guide:  

We can become so easily distracted with relational conflict and forget that spiritual warfare is real.  The truth is that the battle is more UNseen than seen—it is happening in the spiritual realm. How does a typical believer fight against the unseen?  By using the weapons provided us in Ephesians 6:13-17 

  1. Belt of truth.
  2. Breastplate of righteousness.
  3. Feet ready for sharing the gospel of peace.
  4. Shield of faith.
  5. Helmet of salvation
  6. Sword of the Spirit.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the six weapons (above) given to protect the believer in spiritual warfare. What exactly are they and how does a believer use them? How does prayer play a key part?

  2. What is the biggest mistake we can make as we face a spiritual battle?

  3. How much do the demands of an excessive culture affect our ability to utilize the weapons available to us? How do we counter that?

  4. Depression/Anxiety is a growing problem, especially among young people, affecting many in our culture. How can we discern what is physical, emotional and/or spiritual? 

  5. What part could a Life Group play in the spiritual battles of its members?

Each one of us are surrounded by people in our relational world, our Oikos, who are watching our responses to situations every day. 

  1. What strategy of the enemy is most effective, in your opinion, to adversely affect our oikos relationships? What is the best weapon to overcome it?

Digging Deeper:

  1. Go to the gospels and discover the stories of Jesus and how he dealt with his spiritual battles. What are the characteristics of his strategies?

 

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"Choosing Your Battles: What Hill To Die On" by Pastor Tony

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Group Discussion Guide

PRINTER FRIENDLY VERSION

Thriving in Babylon  Sermon Series
Choosing Your Battles:  What Hill to Die On” by Pastor Tony
Leaders, please choose the best question(s) for your group

November 10, 2019
If you have questions, contact Pastor Ric,

Below are some discussion questions relating to a recent sermon. These are provided so that your Life Group can discuss what was shared. Previous Weeks’ Discussion Guides and Sermon Notes are available through the Sermons under the Resources menu. Click on the sermon series and then the sermon you are interested in.  You will see a paper icon under the sermon title. Click the icon to open the sermon notes. To listen to the sermon, click on the speaker icon.

Summary and Context:  Our series, Thriving in Babylon, is focused on how we can live for God, even when the culture around us denies him and belittles/persecutes those who follow him. Daniel, because of his service and confidence in a faithful God, had the privilege of impacting the lives of four different kings and their kingdoms!  He thrived in his faith even in the midst of extreme cultural pressures because of his commitment to and open relationship with the living God.  Last week, Pastor Tony encouraged us to resolve to be individuals who develop credibility by leading through Godly wisdom. This week, we learn how to discern the best conversation to have and how we can speak to hearts focusing on the gospel, instead of becoming bogged down in endless offensive, politically-charged debates.

Sermon Texts: Daniel 1:3-8;  5:11,12;  6:13,19-20;  Mark 12:13-17

Tony’s Take Aways:

  1. Keep the good news of Jesus Christ, the gospel, as THE MAIN THING in your life and before others!

  2. Don’t let offense derail the message of the gospel in both your life and in your words.

  3. Let God fight the battles of offense as he does his work to promote his name. [Example: language and even events.]

Let Jesus’ name be the name that matters!

Discussion Questions:

Spend a few moments processing this teaching with your group.  What things impressed or impacted you? How could this make a difference in your life?

  1. Talk about why the word “evangelical” conjures up negative emotions for some unbelievers.

  2. What practical steps can we take to avoid getting trapped (Mark 12) in “political” arguments that lose sight of the gospel?

  3. Is it possible to build trusting friendships with those who vehemently disagree with the political persuasion to which you may adhere? How?

  4. What is your plan to process/decide which cultural traditions are simply offensive v. those that defile you? Talk about some of the issues you have identified, both those that are offensive and also those that defile. Have you recently changed your mind about any of these?            

Each one of us are surrounded by people in our relational world, our Oikos, who are watching our responses to situations every day. 

  1. Talk about a time with your oikos that you made the mistake of choosing to go off on an offense and hinder a relationship/the gospel message. What did you learn from that experience, and how could you have steered the conversation to be more gospel-oriented?

Digging Deeper:

  1. Daniel’s Babylonian name Belteshazzar had significance to the culture into which he was thrown. What do we know about the name of Jesus Christ?  When we explore the Greek and Hebrew origins of his name, what do we discover?  How does this name reflect who he is and what he has done for his people?  When considering these things, what scripture verses come to mind?
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