June 30, 2024

Assigned Scripture

John 1:45-51

45 Philip went to look for Nathanael and told him, “We have found the very person Moses[a] and the prophets wrote about! His name is Jesus, the son of Joseph from Nazareth.”

46 “Nazareth!” exclaimed Nathanael. “Can anything good come from Nazareth?”

“Come and see for yourself,” Philip replied.

47 As they approached, Jesus said, “Now here is a genuine son of Israel—a man of complete integrity.”

48 “How do you know about me?” Nathanael asked.

Jesus replied, “I could see you under the fig tree before Philip found you.”

49 Then Nathanael exclaimed, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God—the King of Israel!”

50 Jesus asked him, “Do you believe this just because I told you I had seen you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than this.” 51 Then he said, “I tell you the truth, you will all see heaven open and the angels of God going up and down on the Son of Man, the one who is the stairway between heaven and earth.

Matthew 4:1-11

Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted there by the devil. For forty days and forty nights he fasted and became very hungry.

During that time the devil[a] came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become loaves of bread.”

But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say,

‘People do not live by bread alone,
    but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’[b]

Then the devil took him to the holy city, Jerusalem, to the highest point of the Temple, and said, “If you are the Son of God, jump off! For the Scriptures say,

‘He will order his angels to protect you.
And they will hold you up with their hands
    so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.’[c]

Jesus responded, “The Scriptures also say, ‘You must not test the Lord your God.’[d]

Next the devil took him to the peak of a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. “I will give it all to you,” he said, “if you will kneel down and worship me.”

10 “Get out of here, Satan,” Jesus told him. “For the Scriptures say,

‘You must worship the Lord your God
    and serve only him.’[e]

11 Then the devil went away, and angels came and took care of Jesus.

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.

Many times we believe that how we are perceived impacts if and how we can do good ministry. What happens when we are inaccurately perceived? What is our response? Do we need to correct people’s perception so that ministry can be done? What Jesus shows us is that we can surpass people’s perceptions of us and do GREAT ministry. Before we do that we have to deal with how we perceive ourselves. We need to deal with our own understanding of our identity. Jesus shows us the areas of identity that we tend to wrestle with and what His foundation was for His own identity so he could do GREAT ministry. 

Discussion Questions

1. What are the areas where God is calling you to sacrifice so that you can have a deeper relationship with him and hear him clearly? What are some of the hindrances of making those sacrifices? What are some small things that we can do to make sacrificial living a part of our culture as a church, as families and individuals?
 
2. Was there a time in your life when you could not see God moving and the desire came to question his presence or if he was working? If yes, can you describe this event and how you were able to trust God through it even if you could not see Him moving. 
 
3. In this world today and in ministry how do you see people compromising to obtain power? What is it that you believe is missing from our understanding of our identities that allows for this?