Acts 1:3-9 Being Witnesses

Welcome back the group and acknowledge any new members. Share with them that the purpose of the group is to help people discover more about God and how He relates to their lives. Explain that anyone is welcome, and if they have other friends that they would like to invite to join, they are welcome.

Care

Begin the session by asking:

· What are you thankful for this week?

· What are you struggling with and how can we help?

Spend time praying for their concerns

Accountability questions:

· How did you apply the lesson from last week? How did it go for you?

· Who did you share the story with, and what was their response?

Story: Acts 1:3-8

Relate the Purpose: Witnessing in the Power of the Holy Spirit

Relate the Background: The story is about Jesus and the apostles he had chosen. Jesus had risen from the dead and appeared to the apostles on several occasions over a period of forty days. Now he was ready to ascend back to heaven and was giving his very last instructions to his apostles concerning the coming and empowering of the Holy Spirit.

Read the Story: Either the facilitator or members of the group can read. Read it once with Bibles open with the members following along, and once with Bibles closed.

Acts 1:3-8

3 For forty days after Jesus had suffered and died, he proved in many ways that he had been raised from death. He appeared to his apostles and spoke to them about God’s kingdom. 4 While he was still with them, he said:

Don’t leave Jerusalem yet. Wait here for the Father to give you the Holy Spirit, just as I told you he has promised to do. 5 John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.

6 While the apostles were still with Jesus, they asked him, “Lord, are you now going to give Israel its own king again?”[a]

7 Jesus said to them, “You don’t need to know the time of those events that only the Father controls. 8 But the Holy Spirit will come upon you and give you power. Then you will tell everyone about me in Jerusalem, in all Judea, in Samaria, and everywhere in the world.”

Contemporary English Version (CEV) Copyright © 1995 by American Bible Society

Retell the Story: Have a group member retell the story in their own words. If they miss parts or misunderstand, ask the rest of the group to help them, or fill in what they have forgotten.

Ask Questions for discussion and clarification: These are sample questions you might use for this story. Also use your own. Let their answers to your questions do the teaching.

Application

What is your “I will _____________”for this lesson?

Who will you share this story with?

Summarize the Session (Relate to Purpose)

We believe that when Jesus gave instructions to the apostles after His resurrection before He left the earth, that He was giving orders to the church to fulfill until He comes back again. He wants each of us to be His witnesses. But we can only do what is needed with the power of the Holy Spirit in our lives. Only as He empowers us, can we be effective witnesses. We want to train you and equip you for the task, but only the Holy Spirit can give you the power you need. You need to appropriate His power by faith.

Close in Prayer:

Thank the Lord for the privilege of being witnesses for Christ. Thank Him for the Holy Spirit and His empowering. Pray that God would lead each person to share their own story with someone who does not yet know Christ. Pray that we will all appropriate His power and be effective witnesses to our community and the areas around us, that we might spread the gospel and successfully plant the church.

Set the time and place for the next meeting, and remind them to feel free to invite others to join the group.