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1. Jesus is the resurrection

  • Scripture Reference: John 11:25-26
  • Leader Notes
    • Jesus begins by reminding the church that he is the first and the last, and that he is the one who died and rose again.
    • Their faith is being challenged, and Jesus is reminding them of who he is. He is also reminding them that he holds power over death.
    • Jesus also wants to teach us about his character as we need it, and he uses the circumstances of our lives to teach us those things. No matter how long we walk with Jesus, we can never exhaust all there is to know about him.
  • Questions for Reflection
    • What aspect of Jesus’ character is he trying to teach you right now through the circumstances of your life?
    • Where in your life have you seen Jesus bring about resurrection?
    • What does the resurrection of Jesus mean to me?

2. Be resilient under pressure

  • Scripture Reference: 2 Timothy 3:12, Matthew 10:22
  • Leader Notes
    • The church in Smyrna was completely impoverished, had nothing at all, but they were actually rich.
    • If you want to follow after Jesus then there will be push back from the world that rejects him. We all want to be liked, but following Jesus is costly..
    • In a world of comfort, we need to learn the resilience of our faith that comes through enduring challenges.
  • Questions for Reflection
    • Where am I struggling to persevere in an area of struggle?
    • What could I be doing to help build a persevering faith?

3. Hope in the resurrection

  • Scripture Reference: Revelation 20:6
  • Leader Notes
    • The person that is faithful has no reason to fear the second (spiritual death).
    • If you are born again the second death has no power over you.
    • The resurrection of Jesus gives us hope that physical death does not have the final word.
  • Questions for reflection
    • How can I live more in the light of the victory that Jesus achieved?