BY: Nathanael Ballew
DATE: Sunday 2 April 2023
BIBLE PASSAGES: Read online
James | Chapter 5 | Verses 13-19
How should we pray and does it even work? The Christian author Pete Greig said, in response to the question of who prays nowadays “Everyone prays. Even non-Christians pray. The difference when Christians do it is they are climbing into the lap of their heavenly Father!” Prayer can be a mystery. Why are some prayers seemingly answered and others not? However, what if we reimagined what many seem to have allowed prayer to become, a wish list of what we think should happen, and instead turn it into a powerful relationship with an ever present loving Heavenly Father.
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 James Chapter 5, verses 13-19
1 | Were there any points that stood out for you from the talk on Sunday? Was there anything you particularly agreed or disagreed with?
2 | The Christian author Pete Greig said, ‘Everyone prays. Even non-Christians pray. The difference when Christians do it is they are climbing into the lap of their heavenly Father.’ What is your response to this quote? Have you had struggles with prayer? What have these been?
3 | Verses 13-14 give examples of people praying both on their own and also with others. What is the significance of both individual prayer and corporate prayer? Share your experiences of how both have impacted your walk with God.
4 | How do you think the example of Jesus might have influenced the way James taught and thought about prayer?
5 | We can often think of prayer as the avenue through which we get God to do the things we ask. However, Richard Foster writes ‘prayer is the central avenue God uses to transform us’. How does this view on prayer impact your thinking?
As you work thorugh these questions pray for one another to deepen and develop your relationship with Jesus in this year ahead.
Bible Study Resources
BOOK | The Letter of James by Scot McKnight (a shorter version with questions is also available: James & Galatians by
Scot McKnight). Please contact us to borrow a copy if you are preparing teaching material.
BOOK | The IVP Bible Background: Commentary by Craig S. Keener.
# Helpful for a brief overview of James.