January 07, 2024

Assigned Scripture

Isaiah 55:1-3a, 6-7

“Is anyone thirsty?
    Come and drink—
    even if you have no money!
Come, take your choice of wine or milk—
    it’s all free!
Why spend your money on food that does not give you strength?
    Why pay for food that does you no good?
Listen to me, and you will eat what is good.
    You will enjoy the finest food.

“Come to me with your ears wide open.
Listen, and you will find life.
I will make an everlasting covenant with you.
I will give you all the unfailing love I promised to David.

Seek the Lord while you can find him.
    Call on him now while he is near.
Let the wicked change their ways
    and banish the very thought of doing wrong.
Let them turn to the Lord that he may have mercy on them.
    Yes, turn to our God, for he will forgive generously.

John 7:37-43

37 On the last day, the climax of the festival, Jesus stood and shouted to the crowds, “Anyone who is thirsty may come to me! 38 Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.’”[a] 39 (When he said “living water,” he was speaking of the Spirit, who would be given to everyone believing in him. But the Spirit had not yet been given,[b] because Jesus had not yet entered into his glory.)

40 When the crowds heard him say this, some of them declared, “Surely this man is the Prophet we’ve been expecting.”[c] 41 Others said, “He is the Messiah.” Still others said, “But he can’t be! Will the Messiah come from Galilee? 42 For the Scriptures clearly state that the Messiah will be born of the royal line of David, in Bethlehem, the village where King David was born.”[d] 43 So the crowd was divided about him.

New Living Translation (NLT)
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Group Response

Following the weekly gathering, you’re invited to respond to the service by engaging in group discussion.

Discussion Questions

SUMMARY:

How many Christians actually enjoy the life that Jesus promised? How many of the “saved” are converted?  How many are apprentices of Jesus, learning to do easily and routinely the things that Jesus taught us to do?  If we were to get serious about discipleship – the believer and the Church – here are four dimensions of that must be involved. 

1. Do you think of Jesus’ words more as commands or invitations? What difference does it make?


2. Which of Jesus’ invitations resonate most with you in this season? (Matt. 11:28-30; John 4:13-14; 7:37-38; John 8:31-32, 36; John 10:10; John 14:27; John 15:11; John 16:13-15; John 17:17-19). How much of what He offered are you actually enjoying?


3. Which of the four elements come easiest and hardest for you: Encounter, Engagement Belonging, and Mission? What might be a good next step for you?