Leader Guide 2024: Spring Week 6


For the week of April 28, 2024
This guide is designed to give helpful hints in preparing & leading your group in discussion.

Beginning to Think About New Groups for the Fall
With our weekly church attendance continuing to climb, we foresee a significant need for additional groups in the fall. Please be praying with us as we begin to see who might be able to lead those groups.  

Submit your group’s attendance online at northcoastchurch.com/attendance. If you’re not sure how to post attendance, you can check out the guide here: lifegroups.northcoastchurch.com/how-to-post-attendance

1. Have you ever received a handwritten letter that was especially meaningful to you?

2. This week, we read letters to two churches. If you personally were to receive one of these letters, which one do you think you would receive and why?

In other words, which one do you relate to more?

Additional Question: Damean talked about how God signed each letter to the churches with a different name for Himself based on His character. If God were to sign His letters to you with one of His names, how do you think He would sign it?

3. What stood out to you most from what you heard or read in this weekend’s message?

Additional Question: Damean talked about the messaging that some churches and Christians have used to evangelize: “turn or burn.” Is this a message you have heard before from other churches and Christians? What was your response hearing Damean talk about that?

The letters in Revelation 2:8-17 were written to real people in real places with a message for them, but we can also learn from them. As you read them, think through what lessons they may hold for us and our Life Group.

If you were to rewrite these letters in your own words to our Life Group, what would you say to us?

Additional Scripture:

  • “Balaam was a prototype of all corrupt teachers. According to Numbers 22-24 and 31, Balaam combined the sins of immorality and idolatry to please Balak, the king of Moab, because he could not curse Israel directly” (Enduring Word Commentary).
  • How do the Christians in Pergamum (vs. 12-17) resemble the Christians in Corinth Paul wrote to in 1 Corinthians 5:1-9?

1. While some of us will never face the same kind of persecution as the church of Smyrna or fellow Christians around the world, where might you take a hit for your faith in your context or community? How do you respond in those situations?

This is not meant for us to compare our circumstances to others, but rather to help us contextualize the passage for our lives, and for where we are in the world and in time.

  • Have you ever felt harassed or punished for you faith?
  • Do you try to avoid places like that, or do you lean in as a representative of Christ?

Additional Scripture & Questions:

 2 Timothy 3:12

It seems that living a godly life means you will face persecution. Where and how has godliness meant rejection, ridicule, harassment, punishment, etc. for you?

Matthew 5:10-12

Just like the church in Smyrna was called “rich” in the midst of their persecution, we often hear about how persecuted Christians are blessed, and how God uses the persecuted church in significant ways to spread the gospel and expand His kingdom. Why do you think the persecuted church is “blessed”?

 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

The main instruction to the church of Smyrna was to just keep remaining faithful. Is there somewhere in your life you could use the encouragement to stay faithful? How might these verses from Paul in 2 Corinthians encourage you?

2. Have you ever allowed culture to influence your faith and lead you to compromise, or have you stayed strong in the midst of culture? How have you or haven’t you?

Not one of us is immune to falling prey to idolatry, sin, influence of culture, compromise, etc. This is not a question asking, “how have you failed?” The hope is we can evaluate how this happens or doesn’t happen and how we navigate this in our own lives.

Additional Questions:

  • There may be times we have done both of these—times we have given in and times we have stayed strong. If that is true for you, what made the difference in you being able to stay strong?
  • In regard to being influenced by culture or the idolatry around us, at what point is this culture’s fault, versus your own internal desires? What role does culture play and what role do you play?
  • Have you seen someone you know or love struggle with staying strong in the midst of culture or surrounding idolatry? What advice or encouragement would you give to them?
  • Where are you most likely or tempted to compromise because of the law of the land?
  • Have you ever given up an idol? What was that experience like for you?

Additional Scripture:

Romans 12:1-2

How does renewing our minds keep us from conforming to the patterns of this world?

1. How do you stay encouraged in a culture that wants you to compromise your beliefs? What is something you could do this week to help?

Group Challenge Idea: Challenge everyone to find a verse that would encourage them or speak to this idea and ask them to text it in your group chat, or come prepared with it next week.

2. Damean mentioned that we turn and learn as a mark of repentance. What is something you learned this weekend, and how will you apply it? What does it mean if we don’t apply it?

Prayer Idea: At the end of his teaching, Damean prayed, inviting people to repent. Take some time to pray for those who may have heard this weekend’s message and realized there is an area of their life they need to “turn” or repent. Pray for them to be strengthened in the Lord and to be able to live a godly life.