NOTE: Following is a copy of the discussion guide that will be used in MoSt Church’s LIFE groups tomorrow (Sun., Nov. 13). Gladwyn Kiddoe, a missionary in Jamaica that MoSt has long helped support, will be the guest speaker tomorrow morning. It’s only appropriate then that our time together in our LIFE groups tomorrow night be built around the subject of missions and Matthew 28:18-20. You’ll find these LIFE group discussion guides categorized each week here on my site under the category title LIFE group guides.
To broaden our thinking about our daily role in the spread of God’s good news and kingdom.
Jesus came near and spoke to them, “I’ve received all authority in heaven and on earth. Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey everything that I’ve commanded you. Look, I myself will be with you every day until the end of this present age.” (Matthew 28:18-20 CEB)
Icebreaker questions are meant to simply get us all talking. Choose one of the following to discuss as a group.
1. When you pack to go on a trip, what are some items you tend to forget?
2. Tell us about a time when you were very much out of your comfort zone, in a setting or environment unfamiliar to you, and yet felt very much “alive” and “on point.”
These questions are intended to help us grapple directly with the sermon’s primary Scripture text.
1. How does vs. 18 address the needs of those Jesus sends out? How does it speak to the needs of those to whom they’ll go?
2. Jesus says the mission is to “make disciples” (vs. 19). What is a “disciple?”
3. How does vs. 19 speak directly against bias, bigotry, favoritism, and prejudice and for diversity, inclusion, unity, and welcome?
4. What does it mean to baptize someone “in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (vs. 19)? What does it not mean?
5. What does Jesus’ promise of his continuing presence with the disciples (vs. 20) intended to do for them as they share the good news of him and live out his kingdom in daily life?
These questions facilitate our sharing what we sense God’s Spirit is doing with us through his word.
1. It’s very easy to lose sight of our objective, namely to “make disciples.” What sort of things would you say we sometimes, wittingly or unwittingly, substitute for “making disciples?”
2. Verse 19 can legitimately be translated “as you go.” How does this change in rendering affect your understanding of this passage (vs. 18-20) and our means of practicing it?
3. Which speaks most powerfully to you right now: your need to practice what Jesus commands you or how you must rely on his presence with you in it all (vs. 20)? Why?
4. Note the “company” baptism (vs. 19) keeps in this passage (vs. 18-20). What does this say to you about the significance and meaning of baptism?
5. This one is deep. What role do you see the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit play individually¸ as it were, in this passage? What does this say to you about God’s character and desires?
6. What would we all do well to pray for often in connection with missionaries and the people to whom they minister? As a group, brainstorm a list and write it out.
7. Via a chain prayer, pray the list you created in response to question # 6 above.