What are the characteristics of a remarkable church?
“Remarkable things happen to remarkable people who worship a remarkable God,” explained Ray Brewer, superintendent of Northern Missouri District Assemblies of God, speaking at Christian Chapel on March 3, 2013. “As Christians, we should be continually astonished and delighted in the way God interacts and meets the needs of people.”
He pointed out that a remarkable church is focused on a Holy Spirit agenda, focused upon bringing friends in the presence of God, focuses on forgiveness of sins, sees remarkable acts of God’s power and realizes God is simply remarkable.
Luke 5:17 What was the agenda of the Pharisees and scribes who were present? Where had they come from?
What was the agenda or focus of the Holy Spirit?
In what ways is today’s church more focused on other agendas rather than God’s agenda? What would some of those agendas be?
Luke 5:18-19 What was the focus of the four friends? What are some creative ways you have heard about to bring people into the presence of the Lord?
How can you make sure the presence of God is felt in situations you are in every day?
When the presence of God is felt, does it always mean everyone will be happy? Were the Pharisees happy? Was the man who owned the house happy? Was the man who was healed happy? Were the people watching happy?
Luke 5:20 Since Jesus knew the agenda of the Holy Spirit was to heal that day in that place, why do you think he first forgave the man’s sins? What if he had just healed the man’s physical body? Which do you think we are more focused on today?
Was Jesus saying the man was sick because of his sins? Why or why not?
Why is it important for us to forgive? How does forgiving other people set us free?
Talk about how various sins paralyze us.
Luke 5:21-25 How is it that a remarkable church is able to see remarkable acts of God? Did the Pharisees recognize what happened?
Luke 5:26 The words “struck with astonishment” literally mean “out of themselves”. The people present were unable to control their bodies in their amazement or they were paralyzed with the realization that Jesus had just healed the paralyzed man.
When have you been struck with astonishment over something God has done in your life or the life of someone you know. Share with your group.
Prayer together for God to do remarkable things in your life, our church and our community.