5/6-7/15 - The Day God Died - Lesson Series

When you hear or read about stories in the Bible, inevitably pictures come to mind. We imagine what the locations might look like and even wonder if the story is true. This series is filmed on location in Israel and goes through the last week of Jesus’s life and tells the story and the reason behind “The Day God Died.”
* This lesson series is from New Heights Church, Vancouver, Washington and is given by David Whiting. All rights are reserved by them. The lessons are linked directly to their website and are not our own.

1 - Most Important Week of History

This first lesson focuses on the most important week of history and gives us an overview of the historical, actual events that led up to the death of Jesus. We will look at this question: What was the most important week of human history and what does it mean for us?
Scripture Passages: Romans 5:8
Main Point: Jesus Died and rose again so we could have life with him!
Discussion Questions
  1. What is an amazing place you’ve visited? Describe what you imagined it would be like before you went, verses what it looked like after you went. 
  2. What stood out, encouraged or challenged you from today’s talk/video? 
  3. Was Easter a big deal in your home? How? In what way? 
  4. Christmas is a huge deal in our culture, but Easter isn’t as big of a celebration. How can we make it a big deal in our homes?
  5. How does seeing the places and understanding the details of Jesus’ last week give you a new perspective of Jesus?
  6. Read Romans 5:8 - Why is the actual, historical death of Jesus so significant to us today? What does it mean to you and for you?

2 - Why Did They Want Him Dead?

This second lesson focuses on the first couple of days of the last week of Jesus' life before the cross. Most of us know that Jesus died on the cross, but the question we will look into this week is "Why did they (the religious leaders) want Jesus dead?" and more importantly "Why was Jesus willing to die?"
Scripture Passages: John 12:27-28,32
Main Point: Jesus willingly died so we could have life with him!
Discussion Questions
  1. What are some things that you are willing to die for? 
  2. Read the verses below and answer, “Why Jesus Was Willing to Die?”
    1. John 12:27 – This was the very reason He came to earth
    2. John 12:28 – He came to glorify His Father
    3. Luke 19:10 – He came to seek and save the lost
    4. John 10:11 – He came to lay down His life for His followers 
    5. John 12:32 – He came to draw people to Himself
  3. What stood out to you from today’s lesson? A connection you hadn’t seen before? A truth that encouraged you?
  4. How does understanding the political/religious structure of the 1st century provide insight into the death of Jesus?
  5. Talk about Jesus’ willingness to die, compared to the religious leaders wanting Jesus dead?
  6. Are you willing to trust Jesus, that he died for you? 

3 - The Conspiracy and Arrest of Jesus

This third lesson focuses on the conspiring to kill Jesus. The crazy, and even beautiful thing about this, is God, the father, God the son, and God the Holy Spirit was already at work and accomplishing His plan in and through this conspiracy.
Scripture Passages: Acts 2:23-24, 4:27-28
Main Point: Jesus was involved in a divine conspiracy against himself, to rescue you!
Discussion Questions
  1. What are some of the crazy conspiracy theories you’ve heard?  
  2. Have you ever believed in a conspiracy theory before (that turned out to be untrue)?
  3. What was new, or impacted you most, from the message?
  4. How is The Story of Jesus’ final week fitting together for you in a new way?
  5. Read Acts 2:23-24 and Acts 4:27-28. How do you process the idea that wicked men put Jesus to death, yet it was part of God’s deliberate plan?
  6. God is at work in and through all things - even a virus like COVID-19. How might God be at work behind the scenes during this time?

4 - The Trials of Jesus

This 4th lesson focuses on the trials of Jesus. In a world where justice and unjust acts are brought to the forefront of our attention, it reminds us of the most unjust act in human history: the trial, conviction, and execution of Jesus. This week we will focus on the incredibly unjust trial of Jesus, and how the verdicts given can be some of the same verdicts given about Jesus today.  The question for us as we read this is What verdict will you give Jesus?" Your answer doesn't determine Jesus' fate, but yours.

This week, we also want to take time to hear the teens questions on injustice, race, fear, protests, respect authority, and so on. Our goal this week is to focus on praying and asking God for wisdom, not just answering the questions. One of the extremely difficult aspects of this situation is that it is so complex. There are so many layers. We want to have a safe place where discussion, love, questions and the Bible are brought out so that we can be together through this, continue the conversation with each other, and think biblically about all these issues.
Scripture Passages: John 3:36
Main Point: The death of Jesus caused death to die, so we could have life
Discussion Questions
  1. With all the calls for justice and all the turmoil in our country, what questions have come up in your mind? What questions do you have about injustice, race, rioting, protesting, respecting authority? (Don’t try to answer most or any questions this week. Take time to pray and ask God for wisdom. We will look at this more next week) 
  2. What impacted you, stood out to you, or was new to you from this week’s lesson? 
  3. What character in the story of the trials of Jesus stands out to you and why? Pilate? Herod? Caiaphas?
  4. What do you imagine Jesus may have been thinking during His trials or while He waited between trials?
  5. What were some of the injustices Jesus experienced? How does Jesus experiencing injustice comfort you during this time? 
  6. Below are some verdicts given by the people in the trial of Jesus, Which verdict do you give Jesus most of the time? How does this look in your daily life?
    1. You reject him with your life and actions? 
    2. You don’t want to deal with him? 
    3. You just want him to give you something? 
    4. You want him to be lord over everything you believe and do?
  7. What needs to change this week so you can have a proper verdict of Jesus?
  8. What does this phrase “The death of Jesus caused death to die, so we could have life” mean to you?

5 - The Death of Jesus

This 5th lesson focuses on the death of Jesus. For good reason, the cross is a symbol of hope in our culture, but it wasn't that symbol back in Jesus' day. It was a painful, horrible symbol of death. We want to look at what the crucifixion was like, what the first century burial was like, and why Jesus died.
Scripture Passages: Romans 10:9-10
Main Point: Jesus’ desire to save others is why He didn’t save himself. If He had saved Himself, He would have been unable to save you.
Discussion Questions
  1. Before you watched today’s lesson, what did you think the crucifixion was like?  
  2. From the lesson, what stood out to you, or what thoughts came to your mind as David described what flogging and crucifixion were like?
  3. As you think about why Jesus had to die, which characteristic of God stands out to you or moves you most? (Righteousness, Love, Wrath, Justice, Holiness, Wisdom)
  4. Read Romans 10:9-10 - What is one way you can personally apply this passage to your life?
  5. How does this lesson impact your view of the Cross and all that it means?
  6. What doubts or questions do you have that keep you from trusting Jesus today?
  7. ath of Jesus caused death to die, so we could have life” mean to you?

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