As we grow older, many of us tend to disconnect from the Easter message. We realize as adults that our lives seldom look like Easter Sunday morning. Parts of our lives remain dark instead of bright, and instead of a happy ending we have had many endings that were not happy. However, the story of Easter is not only about life, it is also about death. The story of easter isn't just about faith, it is also about fear. It isn't just all supernatural. The story of Easter is strikingly human. When we begin to connect our own story to the story of Easter, it becomes more meaningful to us and of more consequence to our everyday lives.
1. What stands out to you about your childhood version of Easter? How has it changed as you grew older?
2. There are many more characters and emotions that are part of the Easter than we usually think of. Besides Jesus, there were Lazarus, Caiaphas & the Religious Establishment, the people, Jesus’ brothers, Mary, Judas, Simon Peter, Pilate, John, Joseph, and Nicodemus. In the story of this unwanted circumstance, Jesus’ premature death, these characters went through a range of emotions that involved unanswered prayers, unhealthy fears, guilt, shame, prejudice, bigotry, disbelief, betrayal, doubt, pride, corruption, insecurity, anxiety, and stress. Which of these stood out to you the most?
3. Why is the fact that Jesus’ brothers didn’t believe him until after his death such a compelling reason to believe in the resurrection?
4. Do you think Christianity emphasizes eternal life over a better life? Do you think people think better life when they think Jesus? Why or why not?
5. When you think of an abundant life or better life that Jesus spoke of in John 10:10, what comes to your mind?
6. John connected believing with receiving life. How would you define truly believing?
7. Paul said the very same spirit that raised Jesus from the dead lives also in us. Think about the implications of that. Inside of us as believers is the spirit of resurrection. Why should this change the way we view our faith?
Don't miss the kick off to next week's series, What Lies Beneath.
And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you. Romans 8:11 NIV