April 30, 2023
Message Big Idea
Luke loves to use the word “devoted” when speaking of the new community of God’s people, the church. Devotion clearly gives the sense of a binding promise or pledge… somewhat like marriage vows. As followers of Jesus, our lives are about being devoted to God and to each other. This is serious business! In this short section of scripture, the new community is described as a group of people who were bound to God and each other – devoted – even when things got tough!
- In a sense, the church is the only organization in the world that exists for the outsider. Do you agree or disagree with that statement?
- What sorts of groups in our culture are more like an “enclave” (someone look up the definition) than an inclusive, welcoming community? (People in “lifestyle enclaves” are far more devoted to themselves than they are to others.)
- Go around the group and share key highlights or takeaways from the previous Sunday’s message. What jumped out at you as impactful and/or made you want to know more?
- When we look at the first church, what attitudes and actions marked the heartbeat of God’s new community people? (If you were a first-century person who was not a follower of Jesus, how would you describe this strange group of people who were giving their stuff away to help each other and gathering for worship with such frequency?)
- In what ways is our church community marked by the early church’s heart and habits?
- What could it look like for our small group to imitate the early church?
- Describe a time when you did not feel like going to worship, or serving in an area of ministry, or caring for another person, but you did it out of sheer devotion to God and others.
- What happens in your heart and life when you choose to act on devotion rather than feeling?
Live It Out
- What is one truth from this passage would you like to take to heart and act upon? How will this affect your life?
- Who can you share this with during the week?