Pastor Steve Patton – Jonah 1:7-16

September 24th, 2017

Pastor Christian Simas – Jonah 1:4-6

September 17th, 2017

Personal Reflection/Study Questions:
– Use Scripture to support your answers.
1. Buddha’s last words were, “Strive without ceasing.” This seems similar to the Apostle Paul’s words to us in 1 Corinthians 9:24, “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it.” How are they, in fact, very different?

2. Describe the greater context surrounding each command.

Discussion Questions:
1. In the chaos of the storm, the sailors went reaching for whatever help they could find. How have you experienced this sort of desperate reaching for something outside of yourself in a time of need?

2. What does it mean to you that everyone practices a form of religion?

3. Read Romans 8:28. If this is true, and we are in Christ, what do we think about the crisis riddled stories that brought us to where we are now?

4. What happens when faith and self-reliance are working at the same time in your life?

5. Jesus’ final words from the cross were, “it is finished.” What does that mean to us?

6. Contrast Jesus’ final words with that of Buddha, “Strive without ceasing.” What about Jesus’ words give you confidence and assurance that Buddha’s cannot?

7. If it truly is finished, how does that enable us to live a life of obedience to God?

Pastor Christian Simas – Jonah 1:1-4

September 3rd, 2017

Personal Reflection/Study Questions:
– Use Scripture to support your answers.
1. What are some other passages in the Bible that contain the phrase, “But the LORD” or “But God”?

2. What does this phrase imply in each case?

Discussion Questions:
1. Think of a time (past or present) when God brought a great storm into your life. How did you respond to him in it?

2. How does it make you feel that v.4 begins with, “But the LORD”?

3. How does your view of the storm you described earlier change when you see that God has sent it with a purpose?

4. “These actions [storms] declare God’s tenacious commitment to reconciliation with humanity.” – James Bruckner
– What does it mean to us that the storm isn’t evidence of God’s hate or disdain, but evidence of his grace and mercy?

5. Romans 2:4 tells us that God’s kindness is meant to lead us to repentance. What is the result of viewing storms as God’s kindness toward us?

6. “Because of Jesus, the storm, which is often an object of judgement, has now become an object of grace.” – Christian Simas
– How do we respond to this statement?

Pastor Christian Simas – Jonah 1:3

August 27th, 2017

Personal Reflection/Study Questions:
– Use Scripture to support your answers.
1. What is our only hope in life and death?

2. Is it possible to really flee from the presence of God? Why, or why not?

Discussion Questions:
1. Have you ever tried to flee from God’s presence? What caused you to do this?

2. In what way’s is God’s call on your life challenging?

3. Read Luke 6:27-28. In what ways would our lives look different if we lived out this command?

4. Read Psalm 139:7-12. In light of the fact that we cannot hide, or flee, from God’s presence, how then should we think about his call on our lives?

5. How does Ephesians 2:8-10 inform (or influence/shape) our approach to obedience?

6. Jonah heard the word of God and fled. How will we set out to live into the call of God on our lives this week?

Pastor Christian Simas – Jonah 1:1-2

August 20th, 2017

Personal Reflection/Study Questions:
-Use Scripture to support your answers.
1. Read through/reflect on the book of Ecclesiastes. How have you come to identify with the author’s thesis statement that “All is vanity”?

2. Read John 1:1-18. What does it mean that Jesus is the “Word” or the meaning of life?

Discussion Questions:
1. “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” – Mark Twain
– What gives your life meaning?

2. Read Jonah 1:1. What does it mean to us that God is a speaking God?

3. What are some of the ways in which God speaks to us?

4. Read Matthew 28:18-20. In what ways does this passage give us confidence and power to fulfill the mission Jesus has clearly called us into?

5. Knowing the depths of our own sins, what does it mean to us that before we were sent by God we were pursued by God?

6. Read John 20:21. What does it look like for us to respond to this verse with our lives?

Pastor Christian Simas – Introduction to the book of Jonah

Scripture Readers – Deacon Lauren McDermott and Matt Eck

August 13th, 2017

Personal Reflection/Study Questions:
-Use scripture to support your answers.
1. What are some Biblical examples of God’s grace going to extreme lengths to save?

Discussion Questions:
1. Aspects of the story of the Book of Jonah are familiar to most. What have you typically understood the story to be about?

2. Hearing Jonah read aloud, what aspects of the story are most striking/intriguing to you?

3. Tell about a time that you felt God’s grace was not able to accomplish God’s purposes (e.g., “if God only knew what I have done he wouldn’t forgive me”, or “that man is too evil to receive salvation”).

4. In what ways does God’s grace demand that you go further than you might like or find comfortable?

5. “You contribute nothing to your salvation except the sin that made it necessary.” – Jonathan Edwards
– If we were the evil Ninevites that God radically saved, how would that influence the love and mercy we show to others?