Connect Group Notes: July 10th
The Holy Guide: He guides us to salvation and in our lives
Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.”
“How can someone be born when they are old?” Nicodemus asked. “Surely, they cannot enter a second time into their mother’s womb to be born!”
Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit.”
What we want for our people (Main Point of the Message): The Holy Spirit was given to us, to be our guide.
The Holy Spirit is our Guide – We must be born again by the Water of the Spirit
He Guides us to know
- That we are sinners and need to be forgiven- conviction
- Who Jesus is – and that we can be his Disciples
- Continues to convict us of sin as disciples – by his Kindness – as we take steps to becoming more like Jesus
- Teaches and reminds us of Jesus – and there we find peace
The Holy Spirit is our Guide
The Holy Spirit guides us first to Salvation. We must be born again by the Spirit John 3:3-5. It is the Holy Spirit by whom we are born again into the Kingdom – how does this happen?
Here is some of the things the Holy Spirit does to lead us into our salvation and then to keep guiding us as believers as we work out our salvation.
- He convicts us of sin before we are saved John 16:8 – before we are disciples of Jesus, we are in the world, and he convicts us of sin – we need to know we have sinned – it’s a work of the Spirit.
It may be that the implication here is that as the Spirit has come to believers, we play a part in this conviction. “The Advocate would carry out this work of proving the world to be in the wrong through the ministry of the Disciples“ Tyndale New Testament Commentaries: John, Colin G Kruse P 383
(Approach this with care – it is the believer’s job to love the world – and allow the Holy Spirit to convict via their good works and by speaking the truth IN LOVE. The truth is seed, the soil is love!)
- He guides us into the truth of who Jesus is – John 16:13 – it is the Spirit who will reveal Jesus to you. John 16 promises that the disciples will have the same connection with Jesus that they did when he was on earth – just by knowing the Spirit IVP Biblical Background Commentary.
This is great news for us – because by the Spirit we can be disciples of Jesus. For first century believers a disciple was one who followed a Rabi for a season to learn from him – it was a very relational tactile learning experience. Jesus in the scripture is promising that through the Spirit we can see Jesus – and become His disciples.
- Continues to convict us of sin as believers – Roman 2:4 – this is not a new concept; the Old Testament and Judaism knew that God’s grace was the only thing that made repentance possible. We need to understand as Christians that there is a difference between ‘conviction’ and ‘condemnation.’ The difference is the ‘hope’ of the revelation – conviction comes with hope of change, salvation, and redemption. Condemnation is judgment without hope. There is no condemnation in Christ (Romans 8:1) but the Holy Spirit brings conviction from sin. God’s conviction is not ever condemning – it is out of his Father heart knowing that sin is not good for us.
“The mercy and grace of God are not meant to make us feel we can sin and get away with it; they are meant to break our hearts so we will seek never to sin again” William Barclay, The Letter to the Romans P51
It is described in the verse before as riches of his kindness, forbearance, and patience. Hence, we should not judge others because God’s grace and kindness is the thing that leads us to repentance – it is his gift to us
- Teaches us all things- John 14 :26. Reminds us of who Jesus is and what he has taught – so we don’t forget as we travel in our Christian life. He is the Guide who travels alongside us
Jesus says we would not be alone when he ascended to the Right Hand of the Father John 14:16-18 to teach us. As he reminds us – he also Guides us into further conviction – yes – but also peace John 14:27 Why do we have peace now? Romans 5;1 -because of our salvation we have Peace with God!!
Back to where we started – we are born again by the Spirit
Grab moment – A great thought to explore – being a Disciple of Jesus is now a relationship with his Spirit. As the Spirit of the Son and the Father are in perfect unity, the Spirit leads us into following Jesus in the same way as the disciples did while Jesus was on earth.
Good thoughts on repentance from Tim Keller – which is connected to conviction
Tom Wright on the Conviction of the Holy Spirit
Connect Group Discussion Questions:
GATHER: (ensure that these questions centre around community)
- The Holy Spirit is in us and with us when we gather together. Share any striking experiences you have had of the Holy Spirit “showing up” in power when believers are together.
- Take a moment to pray and ask the Holy Spirit to remind you of any Bible verses or revelations about Jesus. Alternatively, He may remind you of something that you can encourage the group with.
GROW: (ensure that these questions prompt discussion on personal growth.)
- Baptism with water is usually done once but baptism in the Spirit is done many times. We need to be filled with the Spirit because it is possible to become “empty“. John Pearce (C3 Kawana Waters) asks these questions to assess our “spirit-level”:
- Are you drawn to prayer?
- Are you drawn to worship/worship music?
- Are you drawn to spending time in the Word?
- Are you excited to spend time with God’s people?
If the answer to any is NO, let’s ask the Holy Spirit to fill us again and help us do these things.
- How does the Holy Spirit help you to be a disciple of Jesus?
GO: (these are questions prompt discussion on spreading the good news)
- We are called to share the gospel with people and leave the convicting to God. Take a moment to consider if you know how to present the gospel to someone. What are the important elements we need to present to others?
- Who are the people you are seeking to reach with the good news at the moment. Let’s pray for them, that the Holy Spirit will be at work in their hearts.