Life Groups // Fall 2020 // Week 9
Posted November 7, 2020 — Lincoln Berean
His Testimony is True // John 19:31-42
Last week we came to a zenith in the story – the death of Jesus on the cross for the sins of the world. This week we see Him buried.
Take some time to read all of chapter 19, then focus on verses 31-42 as you seek to answer the following questions.
We don’t provide a lot of space for your answers to these questions, so we suggest having a journal handy to write down your thoughts. You’re not expected to have time for all these questions during your online meeting, but we encourage you to reflect on them and jot down thoughts on your own.
Getting to Know Each Other (Suggested time: 30 min)
Begin your group time by learning more about each other. Open up and have some fun! Here are some suggestions to get your conversation started:
- Have you ever purchased anything from a telemarketer or infomercial? If so, what was it? If not, why not?
- “Life is not measured by the number of breaths you take, but by the moments that take your breath away.” When have you had such a moment?
Begin to transition into group discussion.
1) Open group discussion with prayer. Here are a few potential prayer items:
- For the Spirit of God to lead you in truth
- For openness to what you’re learning together
- For friendships to deepen and grow
2) Invite someone (or a couple of people) to read John 19:31-42 to the group.
Study Questions (Suggested time: 40 min)
Please complete these questions prior to your group’s meeting time.
1) As you listened to the sermon this week, what is something that the Holy Spirit was bringing to your mind?
2) In verses 31-37, it is remarkable that the Roman soldier didn’t carry out the command to break the legs of Jesus, rather they chose to pierce His side to prove that He had died. Look up the following cross references:
Exodus 12:46, Numbers 9:12, Psalm 34:20, Zechariah 12:10
- How do these cross-references relate to the story of the crucifixion? What do they tell you about God’s involvement?
- How does fulfilled prophecy lend credibility to who Jesus is and what He did?
- How does the idea of God’s sovereignty (even in the midst of great evil), bring you comfort in your own life?
3) The ruling council would probably have had Jesus’ body put in a common grave outside the city walls. Yet in verses 38-42, Jesus is buried in a new, unused tomb of prestige in a garden using 75 pounds of burial spices (an excessive amount). Gardens were generally the setting for the entombment of Israel’s kings. Jerusalem had burial places for criminals and slaves. But Jesus is buried in splendor, in beauty, in an unused tomb, as if it had been carved for Him alone.
- How has your view of Jesus as a king changed over the course of the past few chapters in John?
- Is there anything in your life that you are struggling to submit to Jesus’ kingship right now? (We know we have asked this question before, but it is always a good idea to take stock of our lives. Sometimes things slip in and take the place of Jesus as king…)
4) In verses 38-39 we are introduced to Joseph of Arimathea and we meet Nicodemus for the third time. From John 3, we know that Nicodemus is a member of the ruling council and in Mark 16:1 we’re told that about Joseph as well. We also know that they are both secret disciples of Jesus. However, their actions in burying Jesus would have associated them publicly as followers.
- What do you think caused Joseph and Nicodemus to finally identify themselves with Jesus?
- Read John 12:42-43. How does this passage connect with Joseph & Nicodemus’ actions?
- Are there situations or relationships in your life where you need to be more public about your relationship with Jesus? What might it look like to respectfully live that out?
If you would like to learn more about opportunities to witness or participate in God’s kingdom in Lincoln and around the world, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or checkout this Facebook Group: www.facebook.com/groups/lincolnbereanlocal
Group Prayer (Suggested time: 10 min)
Take some time to praise God together from the scriptures. Give about 5 minutes for each person to look up a passage that is meaningful to them. Once everyone has a passage picked out, have someone read their passage. Then allow time for others to respond in prayer based on what was read. Then have the next person read their passage. If you are new to the Bible, here are a few suggestions of passages in which to find a couple of verses: John 15:1-17, Psalm 23, Isaiah 40:18-31, Colossians 1:15-20
- Before Group: Think of a prayer request—something that will be relevant for the next seven days.
- At Group: Share that request with your Life Group. Write down the other prayer requests shared.
- After Group: For the next seven days, try praying daily for the other requests shared in your group.