The BIG IDEA
Many good things happen when God’s people come together and center their lives on Christ.
Not being connected to God’s family cuts us off from all that God wants for us.
Live out our faith in Christ by connecting with other believers and encouraging others in the power of the Holy Spirit.
I WANT MY STUDENTS TO:
- KNOW: How important it is to live in connection with other believers.
- EXPERIENCE: The joy that comes from being with other believers as we follow Christ.
- DO: Make it a priority to be connected to other believers.
The idea box is a place where you can find some creative ideas for leading this study. You might find videos, activities, or great illustrations that really bring the main point home. The ideas come from small group leaders like you, so if you have an idea that isn’t in there, click below to share it with the community!
*WHAT DO YOU THINK?
Tia placed her faith in Jesus last month, and she’s already felt the difference he’s made in her life. She has a joy and peace she never had before. She finds herself thinking about others when her life used to be pretty self-absorbed. And she’s been growing in meaningful friendships with other followers of Christ that have been really refreshing to her. But she’s wondering how God wants her to relate to these friends who share her faith in Christ. She’s heard people say that going to church is important, but it seems like there should be more to it than that. What advice would you give Tia?
WHAT DOES GOD SAY ABOUT THIS?
*Read Acts 2:42-47.
*1. This passage is a snapshot of how the Christians lived in the days shortly after Jesus died and rose again. What kind of things stand out to you about their community?
Allow the group to discuss. They were devoted to the apostles’ teaching, being together, and praying together. God was working powerfully among them, particularly through the apostles. Love for each other was more important than holding on to their stuff, so they were generous with each other. They were together in large- and small-group settings. They were glad and were praising God. God was adding more new followers of Christ to their number day after day.
*2. Verse 42 says they were devoted to the teaching of the apostles (the leaders of God’s people at this time), living life together (some translations say “the breaking of bread”), and prayer. Why do you think they were devoted to these things?
Allow the group to discuss. Learning more about Jesus, spending time with people who shared a relationship with Jesus, and connecting with Jesus in prayer are all things that fuel life’s most important relationship–a relationship with God–so it makes sense that they would want to focus on them.
3. Verse 43 says they kept feeling a sense of awe and that God was doing great things among them. How do you think this fed their desire to be together?
Allow the group to discuss. Having the sense that God was at work among them and seeing him do great things right before their eyes made them want to be together all the more, so that they could continue to experience more of God together.
4. Verses 44-45 show that people were more important to them than possessions. How do you think this kind of generosity affected their relationships with each other?
Allow the group to discuss. Experiencing this kind of generosity likely drew them closer to each other and to Jesus, the ultimate example and source of this kind of generosity.
5. Verse 46 shows that they continued to meet regularly in the temple (a large-group setting) and in homes (a small-group setting). Why do you think both were important for their growth with God?
Allow the group to discuss. Coming together in a large-group setting likely reminded them that their relationship with God was so much bigger than one person alone with God. Coming together in a small-group setting contributed to building relationships and caring for individual needs.
6. Verse 46 also states they did common, everyday things together, like eating meals. How do you think this contributed to growth with God and each other?
Allow the group to discuss. It increased the bonds with God and with each other. Seeing God in each others’ lives likely helped them appreciate God even more.
7. Why do you think that praising God (verse 47) was a regular part of their lives together?
Allow the group to discuss. God was doing so many amazing things among them on a regular basis that it must have been hard not to praise him!
*8. What difference do you think it made for this community that new followers of Christ were joining every day (verse 47)?
Allow the group to discuss. It must have added to the excitement of what God was doing. It likely gave fresh perspective to those who had been followers of Jesus for a longer time. It gave opportunities for older believers to take younger ones under their wings.
HOW DO WE APPLY THIS TO OUR LIVES?
*9. How do you think God would use this kind of community if it were a regular part of your life?
Allow the group to discuss.
10. How can the local church help you connect with other believers?
The local church is the primary way that God has given us to connect with other believers. Part of your job as a leader is to help your students connect and learn how to grow in the local church. Your youth group or Cru will only be here for your student for a few more years. Helping them connect well to the local church is an important part of your role.
*11. What’s a step you think God wants you to take in his power to experience more of this kind of community in a large-group and small-group setting?
Allow the group to discuss. Make sure to emphasize the importance of being connected to a Christ-centered local church.
Our review cards are an excellent way to review your past lessons with your students before each study. Not every lesson has one yet but if we have them, you can find them on the PRINT page. Check them out and use them each week to help your students grab hold of the truths in these studies.
What ideas do you have that could improve this study? Are there creative things you do to bring this topic home to your students? Please share with the community clicking the FEEDBACK button or leaving a comment below.