SERIES: Discerning Truth
Week #5: Discerning the Truth Transforms Our Way of Life (Part 2)
2 Peter 3:14-18
BOTTOM LINE: Because we discern truth, we grow. Because we grow, we are even better at discerning truth.
“But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.” – 2 Peter 3:18 ESV
Throughout his letter, Peter challenged the false teaching of his day that taught there was no coming “Day of the Lord.” Those who believed this false teaching lived life however they wanted and not for the Lord. Peter reaffirmed the promise of the coming judgement and encouraged his readers to discern the truth of the gospel in their culture. This practice of discerning truth is one that we must carry into 21st Century life.
Peter ends his letter with the admonition to GROW. As we discern truth, we grow. Because we grow, we are even better at discerning truth. This week Pastor Brian will walk us through 2 Peter 3:18, taking a closer look at Peter’s admonition to grow.
GROW IN THE GRACE AND KNOWLEDGE OF JESUS:
- GROW: (auxano) – “grow to the extreme limit”
- Ephesians 4:14-16
- Grow in the GRACE of Jesus: (charis) – “the favor of the Master”
- Ephesians 2:8-9 // Hebrews 2:9
- In the favor and joy and peace of grace. In the delight of grace.
- In the offering of true grace to others (both in word and deed).
- Grow in the KNOWLEDGE of Jesus: (gnosis) – “come to know and experience”
- Learn about Jesus
- Learn from Jesus
THE RESULT OF GROWTH IN THE KNOWLEDGE OF JESUS:
- 2 Peter 1:2 “…grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.”
- How is your “growing” going? Are you stuck? Are you maturing? Are you discerning truth or believing falsehood?
Begin your session with prayer and use the following questions/discussion to get the conversation started…
For many of our groups, this week will be a return to gathering together. While some have continued to gather virtually, others have taken a break from gathering over the past weeks. Some have met in person in different settings, and others are still meeting virtually. Regardless of where and how your group is meeting, this is a great time to spend a few minutes reconnecting, getting to know those who may be new, and sharing about what’s been going on in the past weeks. Answer these questions.
Q: (If new people or non-regulars are present) Will you all take a minute to introduce yourself and share two interesting things about you?
Q: What’s been the most exciting or significant thing that has happened in your life in the past weeks?
Q: What’s the biggest challenge you are facing or have faced in the past weeks?
Q: What are you looking forward to in the near future? (It can’t be COVID related…that is too easy!)
One of the greatest values of being part of a LifeGroup is connecting to others in biblical community. Encourage your group to commit to making the group a regular part of their lives. Encourage them to connect with others outside of the weekly gathering, pray for one another, look for ways to serve and bless each other, and practice loving one another well while being open and on the lookout for people who need to join the group and experience the same.
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Read 2 Peter 3:14-18. Ask and discuss the following questions.
Q: What is the relationship between spiritual growth and discernment?
Q: How does growing in our faith help us grow in our discernment? How does growing in discernment help us grow in our faith? Share an example of this from your life.
Q: Pastor Brian shared this week that “growing in Jesus is very intentional, it doesn’t just happen.” How have you seen intentionality or a lack thereof affect your spiritual growth?
Q: In verse 18, Peter tells us to “grow in the grace” of Jesus. The Greek word used here means “favor of the Master.” How have you experienced grace or the favor of the Master in your life? What does it mean to “grow in the grace” of Jesus?
Q: It’s important for us to not just learn about Jesus, but to also learn from Jesus. In what ways are you currently seeking to learn more about Jesus? How are you seeking to learn from Jesus?
Q: What are you learning about Jesus? What are you learning from Jesus?
Q: What does Peter say is the result of growing in the grace and knowledge of Jesus? (Hint: read 2 Peter 1:2)
Q: What is your personal “take-away” from this week’s message? What is one specific thing the Lord spoke to you this week?
Q: What is your “action step” this week? How are you planning to apply what God has spoken to you?
As you conclude today, take time to pray for those in your group. Pray for specific challenges that were expressed earlier in the gathering. Ask the group how others can pray for them today. Pray for the things that group members were looking forward too. Encourage your group to keep praying for these things this week and that everyone would truly experience what it means to “grow in the grace and knowledge” of Jesus this next week!
SCRIPTURES FROM THIS WEEK’S MESSAGE:
- 2 Peter 3:14-18, Ephesians 4:14-16, 2:8-9, Hebrews 2:9, 2 Peter 1:2
NEXT WEEK’S MESSAGE: “10 Days of Repentance: Rosh Hashana”