Monthly Archives: November 2014

WALKING IN THE LIGHT

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“This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.”

1 John 1:5–10

DISCUSS
How does John describe the Christian life in 1 John 1:9?
How does your faith in Jesus change your view of sin?
Is it possible to have faith in God and continue living in sin? Explain why or why not.
How does “walking in the light” encourage you to live your life before God and others? (See John 3:19–21.)
Why is repentance such an important part of the Christian life? What are the consequences if we are unwilling to repent? (See 1 John 1:6–10.)
Do you consider yourself someone who is quick to repent? What causes us to delay in repenting?
The theme of our study is “love one another.” How does this week’s passage relate to John’s big idea and his hope for Jesus’ church?

PRAY
Pray for everyone in the group to come to a greater understanding of God—that he is light (i.e., holy)—and how he desires for us to live by faith in Christ, trusting his cleansing work, not ours.
Pray for your group to “work out your own salvation with fear and trembling,” knowing that “it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure” (Phil. 2:12–13).

DO
This week’s text dives into the depths of our heart and life by examining whether or not we are walking in the light. This text provides a great opportunity to encourage your group to walk in the light with God and with one another. Depending on the makeup of your group, you can consider one of the following options:

Set aside some time at the end of your session for confession, prayer, and encouragement. You can keep the group together as a whole, or consider breaking up into smaller groups.
If you don’t have enough time, encourage people to get together outside of group time for confession, prayer, and encouragement.

God Is Bigger Than Your Worldly Troubles

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In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. John 16:33

Have you ever stopped to think how different life would be if we were still living in Eden? No broken relationships. No difficult pregnancies. No squabbles with spouses. No financial woes. No cancer. No feeling far away from God. (And this list doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface!)

Instead we live in a world marred by the effects of sin. We daily face all kinds of pain, trouble, suffering, weeping, loss and despair.

The temptation is to blame our woes on God, but let’s be honest: The human race did this to itself. All God ever did was love us, and—when we rebelled—implement a plan to rescue us.

The promise above—a statement by Jesus to his followers—is a sobering assessment of the way things are. But it is also a hopeful reminder of the once and future Paradise for which we were created.

In light of such truth, author Elisabeth Elliot counsels us: “Refuse self-pity. Refuse it absolutely. It is a deadly thing with power to destroy you. Turn your thoughts to Christ who has already carried your griefs and sorrows.”

God’s Promise to Me
Trials and sorrows are part of living in a fallen world.
I am bigger and more powerful than any worldly troubles you face.
My Prayer to God
Heavenly Father, trials and sorrows are a normal part of life. I don’t like this truth, but it reminds me of my need for you, God. I can take heart in the fact that you will have the final word. I praise you because you are powerful and sovereign over my life—even the hard times. Always keep me looking to you.

Content drawn from the Once-A-Day Bible Promises Devotional published by Zondervan (2012). Used with permission.

Welcome to the new site!

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The Vine Students logo

Hey guys! so stoked about our new website! it is still a work in progress getting information and content on so please be patient with us. If you have anything you want to see on the new website just go ahead and comment to this post. The blogs will just be encouragement for you guys throughout the day. The devotionals will be up within a week or so to help you guys apply what you are learning. Hope you guys like the site!

Faith

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What does it mean to have faith? This word is tossed around often within today’s society. So what is faith? Faith is the ability to envision what needs to be done and to trust God to accomplish it even though this may seem impossible to some people. You will come across two types of people considering faith. First, you will run into the person who is going through a difficult situation that seems impossible and will just be ready to give up. Second, you will run into the person who is in the same type of scenario but instead of giving up they will trust God in their difficulty. These people are usually known as the visionaries who dream big dreams, pray bold prayers, and attempt to accomplish incredible things for Jesus. These people tend to be optimistic, hopeful, persevering, and future-focused. These people also tend to be very convincing about the truth of Scripture because they themselves are so convinced of the truth and power of God and his Word. So the question for you is which person are you? The first person or the second person?

Faith is seen very often throughout scripture. The first that comes to mind is the life of Jesus. In one sense, the life of Jesus and his ministry can be summarized as one of faith because he continually trusted in God the father in all things. Faith can also be seen within the life of Paul the apostle, which is seen in the book of Acts. Stephen is also known as being “full of faith” (Acts 6:5). Mary was a woman of faith shown within scripture by trusting in God to give her a child even though she was a virgin (Luke 1:26-38). Scripture also has the “Hall of Faith” I like to call it in Hebrews 11. This gives many more examples of people throughout scripture who have displayed a life of faith.

Furthermore, the Christian today is called to a life of faith. There has to be faith since none of us were the twelve disciples who were with Jesus and seeing Jesus do many miraculous signs and wonders. The faith of a believer is trusting in the gospel message of what Jesus did during his time on earth as well as his crucifixion and resurrection. We are called to have “child like” faith. We are to be like a child who trusts their father in wherever the father may lead. The father is not going to lead their child into danger. The father is going to look out for the best interest of his child. The same is with God and us the father. My encouragement to you is to have that child like faith and have faith that in whatever situation you are in, God will be there alongside of you and guiding you.