BY: Tim Chilvers
DATE: Sunday 2 July 2023
‘BIBLE PASSAGES: Read online
Revelation | Chapter 3 | Verses 1-6
Have you ever walked in your sleep? It can be a very disorientating thing to wake up when you’re doing so. And yet, sometimes, you need to be woken up because you’re heading into massive danger. For these ancient readers they needed to be woken up. In many respects they had very successful lives, and yet they were almost unconscious to the huge problems in their midst. But if they could wake up, even though it might be disorientating, the results would be wonderful.
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No resources this week – Joint Gathering at Tally Ho.
BIBLE STUDY QUESTIONS
Each week there are TWO different sets of questions for you to use, whether you are exploring the Bible within your Life Group, in other group settings, or simply using them on your own.
A | DISCUSSION STARTERS
These are simple questions to provoke discussion together out of the talk (ideal if you are watching our Sunday Service online with others in your group):
1 | Was there anything that particularly helped you during the talk?
2 | Was there anything that you didn’t necessarily agree with, or found difficult to understand in the talk?
3 | As a result of the talk, what:
a. Changes do you want to see?
b. Truths do you need to remember?
c. Actions do you need to take?
B | QUESTIONS TO EXPLORE
These are questions that are based on the talk and the surrounding themes:
Read: Revelation, Chapter 3, verses 1-6
1 | Have you ever slept walked, or witnessed somebody sleep walking? What was it like?
2 | In Revelation 3:1, Jesus describes the church in Sardis as having a reputation for being alive, but being spiritually dead. How is this both an encouragement and a challenge to Christians today?
3 | The church in Sardis is urged to “wake up” and strengthen what remains (Revelation 3:2). In a sense, they are sleep walking through life. What does it mean for Christians to be spiritually awake and alive? How can we practically apply this to our lives and our church today?
4 | In verse 3, Jesus warns the church in Sardis to remember what they have received and heard. How can we ensure that we do not forget or neglect the teachings and truths of the Gospel in our own lives? Are there any specific practices or disciplines that can help us in this regard?
5 | Revelation 3:4 speaks of a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their clothes and will walk with Jesus in spotless garments. What might it mean to keep our garments clean? How might this apply to individuals and to a church like Riverside?
6 | In verse 5, Jesus promises that those who overcome will be dressed in white and their names will not be blotted out of the Book of Life. How does this promise give assurance and hope to Christians today?
7 | The church in Sardis is warned that Jesus will come like a thief, and they must be watchful (Revelation 3:3). What does it mean to be ‘watchful’? Can you think of other parts of the Bible when t theme of watchfulness and readiness appear? What practical steps can we take to live in a ‘watchful’ way?
8 | The letter to the church in Sardis contrasts their reputation, with their actual spiritual condition. How can we guard against a gap between our outward appearances and our inner spiritual life?
9 | The church in Sardis is urged to repent and strengthen what remains (Revelation 3:2). How does the concept of repentance apply to believers today? What might ‘strengthening what remains’ look like in practice?
As you work through these questions pray for one another to deepen and develop your relationship with Jesus.
BIBLE STUDY RESOURCES
BLOG LINKS | Meditations on Revelation 2-3’ by Sam Storms.
Revelation for the Rest of Us’ by Scot McKnight and Cody Matchett
‘Revelation’ (Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament; BECNT) by Grant Osborne
‘Revelation’ (New Cambridge Bible Commentary; NCBC) by Ben Witherington