Brian Ashcraft (Stand Alone Message): Study Guide

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Bottom Line

Power can force obedience, but only love can awaken love.

Study Verses

John 20:31, John 11:21-27, John 11:32-43

Key Points

  • The Gospel is not the prevention of death, but the gift of life. 
  • God doesn’t always act the way we think He should.

ENCOUNTER

  • Over the years, can you think of a time when you caught yourself saying, “God, if you would’ve _______”? What made you question what God was up to in this situation?
  • How did God use this situation to further your trust in Him as well as open your eyes towards His love for you?
  • Power can force obedience, but only love can awaken love. Do you agree with this statement? Why or why not? What makes you answer in the way that you do?

FORMATION

  • Read John 20:31. According to this passage, why were the Gospels written? What did the authors want their accounts of Jesus to do for those who read them?
  • Read John 11:21-27. What was Martha’s “God, if you would’ve _____” statement? How did Jesus respond to Martha’s push back? What did He want her to see and understand?
  • Read John 11:32-43. How is Jesus’ compassion displayed in this story? Why do you believe Jesus was moved to display His emotions?

EXPRESSION

“My faith suffers from too much freedom, to many temptations to disbelieve.  At times I want God to overwhelm me, to overcome my doubts with certainty, to give final proofs of his existence and his concern.”  Philip Yancey

  • Read the quote from Philip Yancey. What causes you, and others, to question God’s heart? What drives this doubt?
  • Where does doubt exist in your life right now? How are you processing and dealing with this doubt?
  • How can you display faith in the midst of your doubts and questions?
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