Sermon Discussion Guide: 2/18/24


Text: 1 John 3:11-24

Big Idea: There is a life that leads to love, and a love that leads to life.

Summary: This week's message builds on last week's text which portrays those who are children of the devil versus those who are children of God. The "fruit" that evidences a genuinely changed "root" is (1) belief in Jesus Christ and (2) love for one another (see 1 Jn. 3:23). Love, then, serves as the prevailing ethic of the Kingdom of God.

Moreover, as the Christian life evidences love, the believer begins to see that living a life of love is where fulness of life is found—the type of life that Jesus says brings joy. Walking in the new life of Jesus looks like pursuing love that forgives and brings peace over tolerating hatred, which is the same heart as that of the murderer (1 John 3:11-15). Walking in the new life of Jesus looks like a willingness to set one's self and possessions aside for the good of another (1 John 3:16-18). Finally, walking in the new life of Jesus looks like a love that takes its eyes off of oneself—being freed from the condemnation of their own hearts—and sees those around (1 John 3:19-24).


1. What are some of the prevailing themes or truths that have been repeated so far in the 1 John series?

2. How do you understand "abiding in God," His commands for our lives, and the role of loving one another all working together in God's plan for our lives?

3. In what ways do you find it difficult to believe that loving others is the best way to experience life?

4. Anger is the expression of hatred in our hearts (Matt. 5:21-22). Do you tend to "blow up" when you get angry or "clam up"? How has God led you to grow in love in response to anger?

5. Love does not turn away from someone in need (1 Jn. 3:17). How do you navigate not being taken advantage of or unwisely stewarding your resources? What examples can you share of faithfulness to this, and what lessons have you learned along the way?

6. A life of love is one that has been freed from the condemnation of our own hearts (1 Jn. 3:20). This allows us to take our eyes off of ourselves, and it frees us to see others and move toward them in love. How has Gospel freedom developed in your journey?

7. What disciplines, practices, or habits do you pursue to make love your natural response in your day-to-day life? Do you need to rethink them or take up new ones? What creative practices could help guide your life in the way of love? (Think together as a group and see what you all come up with.)

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