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Lesson 45: The Practice Of Sharing The Gospel

Sunday, July 22, 9:45 AM - Sunday, July 22, 12:00 PM

Teacher Prep Video

The LIFE: Embracing The Life Of A Christ-Follower

The LIFE: Embracing The Life Of A Christ-Follower

Part 2: The Picture Of A Disciple

Unit 6: A Disciple Invests In Multiplication

Lesson 45: The Practice Of Sharing The Gospel

 

What we want students to learn: That students would accept the call to be messengers of the Gospel as part of their identity as Christ-followers.

 

What we want students to do with what they’ve learned: To practice what it looks like to practically share their faith with others.

 

Scripture Focus: Romans 10:12-15

 

Supporting Scripture: John 4:28-30 and 4:39-42

 

Overview: As your students have gone through this yearlong study on what it means to be a follower of Christ, they have repeatedly come face-to-face with the idea that sharing their faith is part of what it means to be a Christ-follower. In this lesson, they are going to be focusing on what it means to practically do this. You’ll have the opportunity to not only challenge them to share their faith but equip them in doing so. 

 

Teacher Prep Video                                     

Each LIFE lesson comes with a Teacher Prep Video. These are short videos designed to help you grasp the main point of the lesson as you prepare to teach.

 

To access your LIFE lesson 45 Teacher Prep Video, login to your Lesson Manager, navigate to lesson 45, and click on the “Background” tab. You’ll notice the Teacher Prep Video near the top of the Lesson Manager window.

 

Bible Background

The Bible Background is designed to help you provide some context for the Scripture you’ll be studying. The Details gives you background info for each book. The Setting informs you of what’s happening in and around the passage. The Main Point gives you an overview of how the passage will be used in the lesson.

  • What do we mean by “context”? In every YM360 Bible Study lesson, you’ll notice we make a point to encourage you to provide the context for the passages you study. By “context” we mean at the very least helping students know who wrote the book, when it was written, and why it was written.
  • What’s the big deal? When we teach the Bible without giving context, students don’t get a “big picture” understanding of the story of the Bible. But this view is vital to grasping the story of God’s plan of redemption for humankind. As you teach, use the Bible Background to help summarize the context.

 

The Details

  • Author: Paul is the author of Romans.
  • Time frame: Romans was probably written from Corinth in the winter of 56-57 AD.
  • Purpose: Since the church in Rome had not received comprehensive theological teaching on salvation and other implications of following Christ, Paul wrote Romans to ensure a good understanding of such things. In addition, since many Jewish Christians were rejecting some of the new Gentile converts, it was essential that a level playing field be given to all Believers. This is what Paul was advocating for in Romans.

 

The Setting

Up to this point in his letter to the Romans, Paul has spent a lot of time describing what it means to be saved by faith and what it looks like to live as a forgiven disciple of Jesus. When he gets to our passage in chapter ten, Paul is in the middle of describing how God used Israel—His chosen people—to reveal and proclaim his rescue plan for any who would call on Him, whether Jew or Gentile. Paul contrasts in chapter 10 the impossibility of being justified by following God’s law with the simplicity of being justified by our faith in Jesus, culminating with Romans 10:9-10, which we looked at in week two. Romans 10:12-15 flows out of this idea that we are justified by a saving faith in Jesus, not by any works on our part. Since that is true, Paul argues that our role as followers of Jesus is to simply proclaim this incredible news to others as loudly as we can.

 

The Main Point

Paul’s purpose in this short passage is to convey a sense of urgency: a crucial part of being a disciple is to share the Gospel with people who don’t yet have a saving relationship with Jesus. He reiterates in verses 12 and 13 that God’s grace is open to all who put their trust in him. Paul then asks in 10:14-15 four questions to communicate the following: people cannot call on the name of the Lord unless they believe; they cannot believe unless they hear (the Gospel, that is); they cannot hear unless someone preaches (or proclaims); and no one can preach unless they are sent. It’s tempting to focus on just one or two of Paul’s questions. However, to do so could either put too much emphasis on the role we play in someone’s journey to trusting in Christ or downplay God’s role in His plan to spread the Good News of Jesus to the world through followers of Jesus. The four questions in 10:14-15 communicate that God has already sent those who are to proclaim the Good News so that people would hear, believe, and call on the name of the Lord. And the people He sent is us, those who already are disciples of Jesus.

 

Lesson Plan

The Lesson Plan contains three elements: an introductory activity called The Lead In; the Bible Study section called The Main Event; and an application-focused segment called The Last Word.

 

The Lead In

·         Goal: To get students thinking about what it means to tell someone about a good thing, food, or activity that the other person has never really experienced.

·         Setup: You’ll need a watch or a smartphone to set a timer for sixty seconds.

 

FIRST, set up the activity by having students identify something they enjoy that most of the group has never experienced. Ask:

·         What is something you like that you think at least half of us in this group has never tried? It could be food, a type of music or band, visiting a place, or anything else you enjoy. It just needs to be something at least half the people in this group have never tried.

o   Give students time to share so that most people can identify at least one thing they like that most people in the group have never experienced.

 

NEXT, invite some students to tell others in their group why others should try the thing they enjoy. Say:

·         We’re going to have a chance to convince others why they should try whatever it is you said you enjoy. A few ground rules: 1) You have sixty seconds to make your case, 2) You can only try to convince people to try what you enjoy; this is not a time to argue with those who have tried what you enjoy and didn't like it, 3) You cannot interrupt or argue with someone while they are making their case. Who’s up first?

 

Allow at least a few students to convince the group to try whatever it is they said they enjoy. Make sure each student sticks to the sixty-second time limit, but a couple of follow up questions from the group is okay.

 

THEN, help your students debrief the exercise. Ask:

·         For those of you who had to convince the group to try something, what was that like?

o   Answers will vary.

·         How badly did you want your friends to try what you were telling them about?

o   Answers will vary.

·         Was it hard for you when people didn’t seem interested in what you were convincing them to try?

o   Answers will vary.

 

Ask follow up questions to help students articulate how it felt for people not to want to try what they enjoy. Ask:

·         For those of you being convinced, do you now want to try something that one of your friends here talked about? What convinced you?

o   Answers will vary.

 

FINALLY, tell your students that you’ll be talking today about what it looks like to introduce others to Jesus who may never have met Him. Say:

·         When we try to convince others to try something we like, we’re passionate about it, because we like it and we think it will make their life better. In fact, many of you like what you were sharing about so much that you didn’t need to think about what to say, it just came out. But when it comes to introducing others to Jesus, it can be hard, right? We’re going to talk a little about that today.

 

Transition into The Main Event portion of the lesson.

 

 

The Main Event

·         Goal: That students would accept the call to be messengers of the Gospel as part of their identity as Christ-followers.

  • Set Up: You may benefit from a dry-erase board, but it’s not critical. Make sure students have a Bible or that they are able to look along with a friend.

 

FIRST, remind your group that at the beginning of The LIFE, you talked about what it means to become a follower of Jesus. Say/ask:

·         We’ve talked a lot about what it means to follow Jesus in this series. But if you had to explain to someone how to become a follower of Jesus, what would you say?

o   Answers will vary. Make sure you point the discussion toward trusting in Jesus’ work on the cross, perhaps using a passage such as Romans 10:9-10 to refresh students’ memory.

·         Which do you think is harder: Telling a friend about something you enjoy like a band or a type of food—like we did at the beginning of our study today—or telling a friend about your relationship with Jesus?

o   Allow space for honest discussion. The reality is that many Christ-followers don’t really know where to begin when it comes to telling others about Jesus.

 

NEXT, introduce your group to the Bible passage you’ll study today. Have a student read Romans 10:12-13 and ask:

·         What do you think Paul means when he says that there’s no difference between Jew or Gentile (someone who’s not Jewish)?

o   Answer: God does not favor one person over another when it comes to His grace. As Paul says, “The same Lord is Lord of all” (v. 12).

·         Who does Paul say God richly blesses?

o   Answer: All who call on him (verse 12).

·         And who will be saved?

o   Answer: “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord” (v. 13).

·         So, is there anyone who, in faith, calls on God—or to put it another way, trusts in Him—who won’t enter into a saving relationship with Jesus?

o   Answer: The obvious answer is of course, “No.” There is no one outside the reaches of God’s grace. Make sure you point toward the idea that anyone can receive God’s grace who calls on Him.

 

THEN, continue the conversation by having a student read Romans 10:14-15. Say:

·         Paul asks a lot of questions in these two verses. What is he trying to communicate in each of these questions?

o   Answer: 1) That someone needs to believe in (or trust) God in order to call on Him; 2) That someone cannot believe in God unless they hear about Him; 3) That they cannot hear unless someone preaches to them; 4) That someone cannot preach unless that person is sent.

·         Paul says, “preach,” so that means that only pastors who preach in church on Sundays can tell someone about Jesus, right?

o   Answer: The word “preach” has the sense “to proclaim.” Paul is not talking about church services, but rather telling everyone who will listen about the Gospel.

·         In verse 15, Paul says that someone cannot proclaim the Good News unless they are sent. Who do you think is doing the sending?

o   Answer: From the context of Romans 10, it’s implied that God is the one who sends people to proclaim his Good News.

·         What do you think the connection is between God sending, followers of Jesus proclaiming, and people believing in God and calling on Him?

o   Answers will vary. Give your group a few minutes to wrestle through this question. The point you want to direct them to is that God wants people to hear about His Son Jesus, and that His “Plan A” to make that happen was to send people who already have a relationship with Jesus to tell others about Him.

 

FINALLY, lead a discussion about being messengers of the Gospel as part of what it means to follow Jesus. Ask:

·         Based on what we just heard from Paul, why do we tell others about Jesus?

o   Possible answers: It’s God’s plan for people to hear about Jesus through Christ-followers; God has already sent us; God wants us to play a part in people’s journey toward Jesus. Be careful to help students see that while evangelism is a primary mandate for disciples of Jesus, it doesn’t mean that someone else’s salvation rests on our “works” of evangelism, any more than our own salvation rests on our own works.

·         It’s pretty clear from this passage that we are a part of God’s plan to help others hear about Jesus. So why is it so hard to do that?

o   Answers will vary; give students space to share how they feel about telling others about Jesus.

 

Ask if there are any questions and if there are none, transition into The Last Word.

 

 

The Last Word

  • Goal: To practice what it looks like to practically share their faith with others.
  • Setup: Every person will need a copy of the “Messengers” handout located in your Lesson 45 documents.

 

FIRST, refresh your group’s memory of the interaction between Jesus and the Samaritan woman. Ask:

·         Remember a while ago when we looked at the passage where Jesus travelled through Samaria and met the woman at the well? Who can recap the story really quickly? 

o   Answers will vary. Jesus intentionally reached across several social and cultural differences to serve the Samaritan woman. The woman, believing Jesus to be the Messiah, then told everyone in town about Jesus. People came out to meet him, and many put their trust in Jesus.

 

NEXT, help your group see the story from a different angle, looking at how the Samaritan woman shared about Jesus with the people in her town. Have a student read John 4:28-30 and 4:39-42. Ask:

·         What do you notice about what the woman did?

o   Answer: Give your group time to identify the details of how she shared with others about Jesus.

·         How much about Jesus did she know when she went back to town to tell people about Him?

o   Answer: Most of what she knew was just from her personal experience with Him.

·         When she went back to town to tell people about her interaction with Jesus, what did she hope would happen? (Hint: look at verse 29.)

o   Answer: That they would simply come and meet Jesus themselves.

·         How did people in the town react when they were introduced to Jesus?

o   Answer: They heard for themselves, and put their trust in Him as their Savior.

 

THEN, introduce the “Messengers” handout. Make sure everyone has a copy of the handout and something to write with, then say:

·         When it comes to telling others about Jesus, the most powerful thing we can share is our own experience with Him, just like the Samaritan woman did. Remember at the beginning when some of you shared about something you really enjoyed that you wanted other people to experience? What did you talk about most when you tried to convince others?

o   Answers will vary. Most students likely spoke from their own personal experience.

·         The really cool thing is that to do this, we don’t need to know everything about the Bible or be able to answer every single question someone might have about God. We’re going to talk about how to do this in our own lives, using what the Samaritan woman did as a template. Take a look at your handout. We are going to take about five minutes and fill this out. I know it’s not a lot of time, but I want what you write down to be your first reaction to the questions. And some of you may not have yet put your trust in Jesus. That’s okay; be honest as you answer the questions from where you are with Jesus.

 

Make sure your students understand the handout. Point out that the “When did you first trust that Jesus was your savior?” and “How has Jesus impacted your life?” questions are specifically about their relationship with Jesus, rather than how much they like church or youth group.

 

NEXT, give your group time to share about what they wrote. Ask:

·         I’d love to hear some of your stories. What did you write down that you’d like to share?

o   If you need to, model vulnerability through sharing what you wrote down. Encourage students who share, pointing out that their stories might be just what someone needs to hear about Jesus.

·         What was the hardest thing about answering the questions and putting your story down on paper?

o   Answers will vary.

·         What name did you write down for the last question?

o   Answers will vary. Encourage your group for their courage in sharing their story in the upcoming week.

 

FINALLY, encourage students to share their story this week with the person they wrote down in the last question. Say:

·         Sharing your story can take a lot of courage, but it can mean a lot to someone who doesn’t yet know Jesus. We can feel like we might get questions we don’t know the answer to or that we’ll say something wrong. The most powerful tool you have in telling people about Jesus is your own story, and I can’t wait to hear about the conversations you have this week. I’ll be praying for you for sure!

 

Close your Bible study in prayer, perhaps praying for those your students will share Jesus with this week.

 

  • Don’t forget to distribute the devotions to your students this week. If you’re posting them on Instagram or some other means of electronic distribution, make sure you inform students of when they will be receiving them.
  • Use the Social Media Guide to stay in touch with students via text or Instagram and to encourage them to follow through with reading their devotions.