This weekend, JP walked us through Acts 25 and 26. Using the historical story of Paul being on trial before Festus and Agrippa, JP showed us four pieces of evidence that should mark Christians: belief in the Resurrection, a life of Repentance, a life marked by Righteousness, and constantly Retelling the gospel story. If you were tried today for being a Christian—if being a Christian was illegal—would you be found guilty?
- “Evidence of having a relationship with Jesus is you believe in the Resurrection. This is central to our belief. Absolutely central. Do you literally believe that 2,000 years ago Jesus died and rose from the grave? That’s a psychotic thing if it’s false, and it’s of utmost importance if it’s true.” How often do you meditate on the reality of the resurrection and the eternal impact it has on your life? Take time this week to reflect and journal about who Christ is and what He did for you by raising from the dead.
- “Evidence of having a relationship with Jesus is Repentance. Am I saying you’ll stop sinning if you are a Christian? No. I’m saying if you continue to return to the same sin over and over without doing everything you can to put it to death you should be concerned. Repentance means you were pursuing sin, and then Jesus comes in and completely changes your direction. You turn and move toward Jesus.” What sin in your life do you need to repent of? Share this with your community group and ask them to help you develop a plan of how you will repent—how you will turn and move toward Jesus.
- “Evidence of having a relationship with Jesus is Righteousness. I want to make it abundantly clear that we are talking about deeds. Why? Because that’s the word Scripture uses. It should concern you if your life is not marked by the fruit of the Spirit. We are saved by faith alone, but the faith that saves is never alone.” Read Ephesians 2:8-10, Matthew 5:14-16, Matthew 7:15-20, and Galatians 5:22-23. Which fruit of the Spirit could you grow most in, and how can you put that fruit into action this next week?
- “Evidence of having a relationship with Jesus is Retelling the story. People trust Christians before they trust Christ. That’s God’s plan. He could’ve used the angels or He could’ve made rocks cry out, but He chose you. Is there anything in your life that you love that you don’t talk about? Everyone is an evangelist for what they love.” What do you spend the most money, time, and conversation on? Ask your community group to answer this question for you and repent if the answer isn’t Jesus (see question 2); then, ask them to help you identify ways and places to talk about Jesus more (work, family, neighborhood, etc.).
Click here to download a resource to help you answer the question, "Did Jesus really rise from the dead?"