- Have you ever read or studied Revelation before? Why or why not? If so, what did you learn?
- If you were asked to explain how to become happier before watching this video what do you think you would say? How does that differ from Revelation 1:3?
- What’s your first reaction to hearing that the Christian life is not promised to be easy and filled with earthly blessings?
- Have you ever heard or believed that being a Christian is the easy way to live life?
- Have you ever thought of yourself as a threat to the plans of Satan? Why or why not?
- Which characteristic of Jesus from verses 13-16 stands out to you the most? Which one do you need to see as true in your life right now?
- Do you see yourself or others around you seeking praise from other people instead of from God? Why or why not?
- How does it encourage you to know that Jesus tells the Ephesian church that He is among them and “knows” of their work?
- Have you ever had to endure some form of persecution for the sake of Jesus? How were you able to patiently endure?
- What is a part of your spiritual journey that you can remember to help you love Jesus more?
- How have you seen the “cookie-cutter Christian” idea of salvation play out in your life?
- What’s your experience been with repentance? Is it easy or hard for you? Why?
- Take time now to share some sin struggles that you have been needing to repent of. Be encouraged to know that you are fully loved by God and nothing you can say will affect His opinion of you.
- Why do you think it’s so difficult to “get rich quick” spiritually speaking?
- Have you ever experienced any sort of persecution (even in its mildest forms)? How and why do you think that happened?
- Read the description of Jesus in v.8. How do you think that depiction of Jesus can encourage a suffering church or an individual who is suffering?
- Why do you think Christianity experiences exponential growth under extreme persecution?
- In the same way that the Church’s growth was fueled by hardship, what difficult situation in your life right now can you see as something that is going to grow you?
- In what ways have you seen yourself being too willing to compromise with the world by diluting either the message or the morals of the Gospel?
- Living uncompromised is not easy. What assurances and encouragement can you take away from this session to help you?
- How would you define the word ‘truth’?
- How have you seen God emphasize different parts His character to you as you go through different seasons of life?
- What is the lens (or lenses) that you use to see and understand God in your life?
Leaders: As we will emphasize in the video teaching, the only sure fire way to see God rightly is through the lens of His Word. Other lenses may not be bad, but this question wants to accomplish that the Bible is the best way.
- What do you think it looks like to hold onto truth in our current culture and season of life?
- How would your life look different if you only cared about being called a faithful witness irregardless of how much it hurt?
- “Hate based in Truth is an extension of love.” How does this statement sit with you? Do you agree? Why or why not?
- How can you love others fully, but hate sin fiercely? Is that easy for you? Difficult? Do you have a tendency to be unbalanced in one direction?
- How does the idea of an eternal reward encourage you and energize you?
- Do you believe that the best days of your life could be ahead of you? Why or why not?
- How is it possible to have your circumstances change, but still be living in “the best days of your life”?
- “God cares about your personal holiness.” Do you believe that? Why or why not?
- How does the idea of being seen as holy or set apart by God encourage you?
- God knows that when we live set apart, it is for our own good. What do you think living a more set apart life looks like for you?
- Thinking about the graphic illustration on the white board, have you ever thought of righteous living as getting you somewhere (making you more like Jesus)? Or have you always thought of it as just following rules?
- Living more like Jesus will make our lives better. In what ways could your life be “better” without changing your bank account, health diagnosis, or circumstances you’re in?
- When you think about a church being “alive” what are the characteristics that come to your mind?
- What about the church you attend, would you characterize it as alive? Why or why not?
- If you were to ask your closest friends and family, would they say that your faith has a reputation of being alive? Why or why not?
- “A reputation only exists because it is either partly true presently, or fully true formerly.” Would you say that your reputation you talked about in question 3 is true now or was true in the past? What makes you think that?
- Of the 5 tips for spiritual authenticity, which one(s) do you need to put into practice? Why?
(1- Wake up. Get big. 2- Finish the job. 3- Remember. 4- Retain. 5- Repent.)
- There’s still time. What encourages you most as you look at verses 4-6 and realize that God isn’t done yet?
- In Philadelphia, Jesus had only good things to say! We’ve been hard on ourselves so far in this study, so let’s give ourselves some credit. What things do you think Jesus would commend in your Christian walk if He wrote to you?
- What do you think about the unpopular, but true statements about the narrow door of salvation? Do you agree that they’re true? Why or why not?
(1. The door is only opened by Christ, 2. The door is closed by Christ, 3. The door is closed on some “Christians”)
- What are some examples of (open doors) that God has given you in the past that you walked through?
- What do you think might be some open doors that God is presenting you with now?
- In verse 8, Jesus identifies an excuse the Philadelphian church may use to not take the opportunity. What is it? What hesitations do you have about the opportunities God is giving you now?
- How can you practically use the acronym O.P.E.N, to help you identify which open doors are from God and which ones are not?
- Thinking back over the last 7 sessions, what is one truth that will stick with you for a while?
- Who is a Christian you know that is “hot” or “on fire” for Jesus? What makes you say that about that person?
- Does it surprise you that Jesus says He would rather someone be cold than lukewarm? Why do you think He says that?
- What do you think being lukewarm looks like in your life and the lives of Christians in our culture today? How can you combat that by staying close to the source?
- How have you seen self-reliance take shape in your life and the lives of other Christians around you?
- Look at verses 18-19 again. The very things the Laodiceans were proud of (money, wool, eye hospital), were the exact deficiencies Jesus points out. How do you think this could take shape in your life?
- Jesus was a real man who lived and died. No one doubts that. The question is: did He come back to life? Have you ever thought about the story of Jesus like this? How should it change the way we live if this is true?