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Lesson Three: Full-length

Journey to the Jordan

Laurie Aker

NOTE: FOR A PDF COPY OF THIS LESSON'S DISCUSSION GUIDE PLEASE VISIT OUR WEBSITE -DISCUSSION GUIDE FOR GROUP OR INDIVIDUAL USE Lesson Three: Journey to the Jordan LESSON SUMMARY In order to follow Christ we must be willing to leave. To be more like Jesus, we need to leave our extra baggage behind-all we think we need, our ways of doing things, the familiar and safe, what we desire to do. Sometimes, if we are slow to follow, reluctant to surrender, or unwilling to submit, a few small steps can take a lifetime. Yet when we humble ourselves under the mighty hand of God and submit to Him in every way, we enter into the precious, magnificent inner chambers of the kingdom of God, where nothing in this world can ever compare. So let’s journey to the Jordan as the people did in response to John the Baptist’s call for them to repent of their sins…and find Jesus there. Opening Prayer: Heavenly Father, we thank you for this time you have provided for us to come together to hear from you and have fellowship in your Word and to learn and apply your Word to our hearts. We need you, Lord. We need your grace all the time. We praise you for your goodness and your love and mercy. Please open our hearts to you and to one another and lead our discussion. Help us not to fear, but to put all of our hope in Christ. Help us to remember there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. May you be glorified in all our thoughts and words and deeds. In Jesus’ name, Amen. I. LECTURE Will someone share how the Lord used the lecture to speak to your heart? Did anyone have any questions or concerns about the lecture? If you ever have a question or something is unclear, please let us know. We want to serve you in any way we can! II. QUESTIONS FROM THE HOMEWORK Go through the homework, occasionally calling on women. Read scriptures aloud. After asking a question, remember to allow a brief period of quiet “wait-time” to give women a chance to think before answering. After pausing, if no one shares, go ahead with your answer, rephrase the question, and/or move on. DAY ONE- 1. Are you ready for a journey—to seek and discover what the Lord has said in His Word, to understand His heart, and to know Him better than ever before? What excites you about this journey? 2. Would someone vulnerably share what you confessed to the Lord that you don’t want to leave in order to follow Him? DAY TWO- 3. Please read Mark 1:4-5. What does Isaiah the prophet say about John? Why was John in the wilderness? Why do you think the Father was “well pleased” with His Son? 4. What family traditions or beliefs might you have to leave; what items on your schedule or to-do list might you have to ignore; or what things might you have to let get disorganized in order to establish God’s order and obey the call to follow Jesus? DAY THREE- 5. Read Matthew 3:13-15. Does anyone have a question about baptism? Please feel free to contact your small group leader if you have any questions or concerns. 6. If you are a believer and have been baptized, are you living as though you have died and now live for Christ alone? Did you ask anyone you know to be honest with you about whether or not they see you living a life fully abandoned to Christ and His Word? 7. What are your thoughts and feelings toward your Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ? Who is He to you? DAY FOUR- 8. Read Acts 2:38. Are you living a life of continual repentance? In what areas do you need to repent? DAY FIVE- 9. In the Titus passage, what does Paul tell Titus to tell his flock? What does this passage say about who we once were? And what did Jesus do for us? 10. What does Jesus say it means to follow? 11. What do you think the steps would be to follow Christ on the path of righteousness, to live according to the kingdom of God? III. PLEASE FILL OUT YOUR HOMEWORK ACCOUNTABILITY CARDS IV. PLEASE RECITE YOUR SCRIPTURE MEMORY VERSES TOGETHER V. TAKING THE TRUTH TO HEART TIME We will now focus on taking God’s truth to our hearts and bringing it to life. James 5:16a states; “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.” And 1 Peter 2:24 says, “He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.” Please turn to your Taking the Truth to Heart Review page. We will each have 3 minutes so that every woman will have a chance to share. Please record one another’s confessions on the Taking the Truth to Heart Guide on the following page so you can pray for one another throughout the week. Leaders please set the example by going first. VI. PLEASE CLOSE IN PRAYER

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PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING: Sample lessons and audio/video files (below) are accessible for each study for those who would like to preview a study. Our audio/video resources are meant to be used in conjunction with the study workbooks for a full mentoring and discipleship experience. Due to this, most of our workbooks are password protected; passwords are located in the corresponding workbooks––If you do not have a workbook containing the passwords please contact us at info@thistlebend.org If you do not have a workbook and would like to purchase one today––select the tab "Purchase This Study Today" listed on the previous page. More information about JESUS, I NEED YOU: This introductory-level discipleship study will challenge women to really know Jesus and look to Him in ways they may never have before. Throughout this study, the teachings of Jesus will be unfolded, and participants will be encouraged to put aside the demands of their present-day world and sit at Jesus’ feet so they might truly hear His message. As they learn to listen attentively, their hearts will be pierced by the voice of Jesus in God’s Word. They will come to know His heart and know that they can ask Him for the grace they need to obey Him fully. Be sure to order the companion study, Jesus, I Want to Love You, after completing this study. -Focus Scripture: Matthew 1-5 (with a focus on the Beatitudes) -Length: Eleven weeks -Introductory Level (30-45 min. daily) -Written by Laurie Aker

Purchase This Study Today

Digital Copy and Hard Copy Available

This introductory-level discipleship study will challenge women to really know Jesus and look to Him in ways they may never have before. Throughout this study, the teachings of Jesus will be unfolded, and participants will be encouraged to put aside the demands of their present-day world and sit at Jesus’ feet so they might truly hear His message. As they learn to listen attentively, their hearts will be pierced by the voice of Jesus in God’s Word. They will come to know His heart and know that they can ask Him for the grace they need to obey Him fully. Be sure to order the companion study, Jesus, I Want to Love You, after completing this study.

Supplementary Study Materials

Memory Verses, Syllabus, and Commentary

MEMORY PASSAGE: Matthew 5: 3-17 ESV Lesson 1: vv. 3-4 Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. Lesson 2: vv. 5-6 Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied. Lesson 3: v. 7 Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy. Lesson 4: vv. 8-9 Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. Lesson 5: v. 10 Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Lesson 6: vv. 11-12 Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you Lesson 7: v. 13 You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people's feet. Lesson 8: vv. 14-15 You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. Lesson 9: v. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. Lesson 10: Review lessons 1-9