1st Peter - Living On The Outside, Keith Ferrin

  1. What do you think of when you hear the phrase “be holy because I am holy?” Is that even possible?
  2. What is one step/decision/habit you could take when it comes to being “internally-minded?”
  3. What is one step/decision/habit you could take when it comes to being “externally-minded?”
  4. What is one step/decision/habit you could take when it comes to being “eternally-minded?”
  5. What stood out to you as you simply heard the letter of 1 Peter?

1st Peter - Living Out Our Faith In A Foreign Land

The first Christ-followers lived in a time/place that was hostile to their faith. Peter (yes, that Peter) was a leader who wrote words of wisdom and encouragement to Christians in a foreign land.

Read 1st Peter 1:1-12

  1. As a christian do you feel like an outsider in a foreign land? If so why, and how long have you felt this way?
  2. Sometimes the circumstances in society or life can rise up and cause us to forget how big and good our God is. In those moments when we are so focused on our circumstances which of these do you find yourself most prone to?
    1. Challenges to your faith
    2. Your joy being stolen
    3. God's glory is eclipsed by circumstances
  3. In Christ we have an inheritance that is eternal and focusing on that is a way to help shift our perspective from our circumstances to our Living Hope in Jesus. Nate shared 3 ways that looking ahead enables this shift. Which one of these is God working with you on this week?
    1. Your faith being proven or improved
    2. Increased joy
    3. God revealing His glory to you in a new way
  4.  As christians we don't have to be influenced by this world but sometimes it is hard with what we put in front of ourselves. Which of these ways below would help you have a Living Hope this week?
    1. Changing time spent on news/social media vs prayer/scripture
    2. Finding a way to encourage someone
    3. Finding a way to serve someone
    4. Share your hope in Jesus with someone
       

Legacy - State of the Church

Inheritance is the STUFF we leave behind, Legacy is the IMPACT we leave behind. -Pastor Nate

Read 2 Corinthians 5:13-17

  1. As we reflect on 20 years of God's faithfulness to the work He's doing through us at Cascade, what has been the most impactful part of Cascade's ministry to you so far?
  2. How do you believe you have been a part of ministering to others during your time at Cascade?
  3. Pastor Nate had 4 points as he discussed what it mean to live because Jesus died for us. How do these points influence you and your next season of ministry at Cascade?
    1. We don't live for ourselves
    2. We live with abandon
    3. We are a new creation
    4. We are being changed 
  4. Let us focus on transformation and ask "God what is next me?"

 

Legacy - Live Generously

This week we look at some of the urban legends we hear for what it means to live generously. Maybe these urban legends are new to you or maybe you've heard these before.  Please spend some time discussing each one and see where you fit in. Maybe the Holy Spirit has something to say to you as you consider these urban legends. 

Have you heard these before? Do you believe them? What does scripture say about them?

  1. Urban Legend #1 “If I am generous with my TIME and MONEY I won’t have enough for myself.” see Acts 2:42-47

  2. Urban Legend #2
    “Once I get _________________ then I will be generous .” see David's Response in 2 Samuel 24:24

  3. Urban Legend #3
    “The church is just after my time and money” 

  4. Urban Legend #4
    “My generosity of time and resources should come out of my abundance.” see Acts 4:32-35

Legacy- Love People

  1. Think back to last week's message about Loving God, what do remember about the idea of living a God-Centered Life?
  2. Re-Read, Mark 12:29-30, what does Jesus say and how does that relate to Loving God and Loving People?
  3. How did we define what a Legacy is this week?
  4. Read aloud, John 13:33-35, what is Jesus' new command to the disciples?
  5. How does that command impact the Gospel of Jesus?
  6. Whose legacy are you apart of and what was the road they paved for you?
  7. What is the legacy you are building today look like, and how do you know?
  8. Whose name did you write on your Love People card and what are the three ways you will choose to love them this week?

Legacy - Love God

We all leave something behind. The stuff we leave is divided up through a last will and testament. But what about the actual impact we leave? That's part of our LEGACY! At Cascade, we believe God has given clear focus to living a life that really makes a difference.

  1. Read Mark 12:28-30 Do you Love the Lord your God? What would you say is that state of your relationship with Him?
  2. If you feel far from God do you know how to reach out to Him for comfort? Read John 15:1-17
  3. Do you trust God's word that He loves you and wants a relationship with you?
  4. Here is a prayer of encouragement. Read it out loud if you like! “Father, this year I am yours. I see how you love me and I want to love you right back. Please make my life fruitful. Increase my joy, deepen my love and keep me close to your heart. I want to please you this year no matter what else happens in my life. AMEN”

Old Testament Overview

In preparation for reading through the Bible in 2017, Pastor Nate teaches a high-level overview of the purpose and content of the Old Testament. All of Scripture tells God's rescue story!

  1. Have you ever read through the Old Testament? If not, what do you think is holding you back?
  2. What are some things about the Old Testament that surprise you?
  3. Do you have a favorite book or story in the Old Testament? What and why?
  4. Have you ever felt like the Old Testament is less relevant than the New Testament?
  5. Would we as a group consider reading through the Old Testament together?

Christmas Future

  1. For our talk of Christmas Future we are looking at our need for hope. We start in Leviticus 25:10 seeing how God gave His people a reset year called Jubilee. How does understanding the year of Jubilee give you hope?
  2. While the Old Testament community had a Jubilee year we see Jesus quoting Isaiah in Luke 4:14-21 and fulfilling the prophecy in Isaiah 61 thereby announcing a Jubilee age, that He is the Messiah. Do you have hope in Jesus as your jubilee?
  3. Pastor Nate showed us 4 ways that Jesus is our Jubilee. How are these Good News for you in the current season?
    1. He offers Forgiveness, 1 John 1:9
    2. He offers Freedom, John 8:36
    3. He offers Restoration, Matthew 17:11
    4. He offers Faith and Hope, 1 John 5:4

Christmas Time, Past Present Future - Voice of Shame or Redemption

  1. If the Ghost of Christmas Past came to you tonight; what mistakes would he remind you of?
  2. What part of the cycle of brokenness does the enemy use to hold you captive?
  3. Do you find yourself trapped by silence?  Who do you have in your life that you trust to be transparent with?
  4. The voice of redemption starts by revealing the weight of our sin?  How is this different from worldly sorrow?
  5. What happens in your heart when you discover that you are not alone in your sin?
  6. How does it feel to know God can redeem and use your past for the kingdom of God?  How could this play out in your life?
  7. What will it take to convince you that you can truly come into the throne room of God and follow His voice?  Do you trust that He isn't finished with your story?

ONE: More - Person Of Peace

  1. When you think of the Person of Peace as someone who is hospitable to you and cares for you, yet they do not yet know Jesus as their Savior... who comes to mind?
  2. When you think about the Harvest being plentiful and the workers being few... how do you feel about that?
  3. As you assess your life how are you actively joining the Lord in his Harvest?
  4. If it is God's job to win people to salvation in him why does he also provide a place of service for us in that process?

ONE: More - What If We Each Could Reach Just One?

  1. When you think of the people in your life who you can influence for Jesus what keeps you from investing in them?
  2. When you think of getting someone to “Church,” do you think of the church as a location or do you think of yourself as the “Church"?
  3. If you are the Church what does that mean in your neighborhood, your workplace and your family?
  4. How will you challenge yourself to invest in your ONE this year?

#priorities - Haggai 2

Read Haggai 2

  1.  In verses 1-9 we see a warning that Pastor Mike referred to as "This is not that" meaning we tend to get stuck in a preference battle or may think things of the past are better than current things. Where in your life or maybe even how you view the church have you seen yourself get stuck on your preferences?
  2. In verses 10-19 we see a reminder to stay focused on our walk with God and a warning that Proximity to or contact with a holy thing doesn’t automatically make you holy. Are there ways in which you may have allowed yourself to drift in your walk or allowed yourself to believe that works of some sort are a reasonable replacement to your active walk with God?
  3. In verses 20-23 we see that with God we have a glorious future but we have to finish in Him. What are some things that you look forward to in you eternal future with Him? 

#priorities - Haggai 1

When we neglect God's priorities for the sake of our own, we may find ourselves caught in an empty pursuit. But when we realign our priorities to match His we find the fulfillment we long for. 

Read Haggai 1:1-15

  1. Pastor Mike made the comment that our priorities are linked to our values. What are some priorities in your life?
  2. No look at where you spend your time and financial resources, do they show you that you have different priorities? Why or why not?
  3. Read Matthew 6:25-33, How does this help shape what your priorities should be?
  4. 150 years from now will you still believe you had the correct things prioritized in your life? 

Imago Dei: Family, Pay It Forward

What is the purpose of the family?  What does God have to say about raising the next generation?  Pastor Nate speaks from Eph 6 and Deut 6 in this final talk in the Imago Dei series.

Read Ephesians 5:22 - 6:3

  1. What do you believe it means to cultivate a marriage centered home?
  2. What are some ways that a child centered home can ruin a marriage?
  3. Pastor Nate said kids have a responsibility in the home... to Obey and Honor. How does that parallel our relationship with God as His kids?
  4. We also heard that parents have a responsibility in the home... to Teach, Nurture, Love, Coach and Model. What are some ways that you do that in your home or maybe with others in your life?

 

Imago Dei: The Gift Of Sex

This week we dig in to a topic that could be fraught with baggage for many people but be reminded that God loves us and forgives us even when we sin.

Instead of questions this week we'll have more general discussion points that could flow freely as you work through them. As you ponder them, consider what scripture has to say about each point as well as try to discern how you have agreed to disagreed in your thoughts and actions up to this point in time. 

Read 1 Corinthians 6:12-7:5

  1. The Gift of sex: God is for sex, He created your body for sex, He created your body for sex in marriage
  2. Honor God with your body: if you're not married... say NO to sex, if you are married... say YES to sex
  3. Honor each other: serve your spouse by meeting his/her needs, communicate your needs and desires, don't use sex as a lever to manipulate one another
  4. Biblical reasons to have sex in marriage: pleasure, children, oneness, knowlegde, comfort, protection
  5. Biblical reasons to NOT have sex: physically separated, illness, childbirth, working through a problem

Imago Dei: Holy Together

  1. Today we discuss how marriage is more for our holiness then our happiness. How can you change the focus of your marriage from happiness to holiness? 
  2. Our true happiness can only be found in Christ yet sometimes we put our happiness in our marriage or family. What expectations do you have for your spouse that they fail to fulfill and how should those expectations be placed on God instead?
  3. What part of your marriage should you see as being a model for God's relationship with us?
  4. How do you need to find God's heart for your spouse? 

Imago Dei : Better Together

 Today as we continue our study of Imago Dei (image of God) we see how God uses the creation of Eve to complete this in humanity, but soon this is broken by sin and now we compete as a result. But God as a loving father works to restore us to Him and each other.

  1. Read Genesis 2:18-25 Male and Female are better together according to scripture. How do you think they better reflect Gods image together?
  2. Read Genesis 3:14-19 We see the image of God broken in Genesis. How has this impacted humanity and the world around us?
  3. How have you seen this change over time?
  4. Read Ephesians 5:22-33 The Gospel is the good news that unites us to God and has the power to restore our relationships. How do you see the Gospel portrayed in this passage?
  5. Is there anything in this passage you find uncomfortable or counter cultural?
  6. Read Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 Here we see Solomons ancient wisdom telling us that we are better together and you may find this in sharp contrast to today's current wisdom. In what ways does this reflect the heart of God for his people to be in community and relationship with each other?

Imago Dei: The Feminie Heart - Hurdles & Redemption

  1. Kaitlyn and Amy asked the question, "What does it mean to be a woman?" and they shared some of the ideas they have heard, what stood out to you and what do you believe it means to be a woman?

  2. Read Genesis 1:26-31 and then talk about how you see Women being created for Relationship, Leadership, and Responsibility?

  3. How do you see the roles of men and women being portrayed in our culture today and how does that align or not align with scripture?

  4. Read Genesis 2:18-31 and discuss what Nate described as the term "Helper" from the Hebrew word "ezer", what does this word mean and how do you see it working itself out in your life?

  5. Discuss how Genesis 3:1-16 caused brokenness in femininity through sin, what were the results of Eve's sin?

  6. Thinking about how God is redeeming femininity, reflect for a moment on Ephesians 2:1-5. How does this passage encourage you in your walk and as you views other in your life? 

  7. For Women: How can you embrace who God designed you to be in your life?

  8. For Men: How can you support the women in your life in the process of embracing God's design?

Imago Dei: The Masculine Heart - Hurdles & Redemption

What does it mean to be a man? Our culture is not really not clear today. And when does a boy become a man? Most cultures have had a mile-marker that highlight the moment that the tribe/family/community considers a boy to be a man, but not ours. Let's look to Scripture to see what God says about the meaning of being a man.

  1. In 1 Corinthians 16:13-14 Paul says to "act like men" assuming that we'll know what that means, but do we? Discuss some of the things culture says a man is and then reflect on how scripture sees what it means to be a man.
  2. In Genesis 1:26-28 we see mankind made in the image of God so the tell us a bit about the meaning and role of a man according to scripture.
    1. How do you see men as created for relationship in this text?
    2. How do you see men as created for leadership in this text?
    3. How do you see men as created for responsibility in this text?
  3. In Genesis 3:1-13 we see the unfolding of the fall of mankind.
    1. In verse 6 we see that Adam was with Eve. What do you think is the significance of this?
    2. In verse 12 we see Adam blaming Eve for his sin. How do you think these two events in v6 and v12 have affected the rest of mankind?
  4. Reflect for a moment on Ephesians 2:1-5. How does this passage encourage you in your walk and as you views other in your life? Is anyone beyond the reach of God?
  5. Pray 1 Corinthians 16:13-14 over the men in your group and that we would see the redemption of biblical manhood in our church and society.

 

Imago Dei: In His Image

Our culture is always shifting. Society tells us who we should be as men and women, but its message keeps changing. But, the Bible teaches us exactly who we are—men and women created equally but uniquely. God’s beautiful design for us is true and perfect, leading to joy and fulfillment.

Read Psalm 8:3-8, 139:13-16 & Genesis 1:26-28

  1. What spoke to you/stood out to you/resonated with you from today’s message? 
  2. Before today, when you heard “created in God’s image”, what did it mean to you? 
  3. Why is the creation of humanity different from the rest of God’s creation? What are some clues to this reality?
  4. What are some ways that our culture devalues or minimizes human life? Abortion, racism, classism, ageism, etc. Have you been personally involved or impacted by any of these? This could be with you as the object (the one being devalued) or the as the subject (the one doing the devaluing). 
  5. As a believer with a solid understanding of “Imago Dei”, how should this impact the way we live our lives? We would see and treat others as the valuable, beautiful creation of God, regardless of anything else (e.g. race, appearance, class, contribution, age, beliefs, etc.).