Before the Session
Facilitator: In advance of the session
- Review today’s scripture text and the session activities to help better facilitate the discussion.
- Have the Bible Background Video ready to view.
- Encourage your group to listen to the Faithelement podcast ahead of the next session (Share the link via email or social media).
- Research current events on the Internet, or use the in-session links to review some issues you may wish to discuss while establishing your context.
- Bring some newspapers and/or magazines – enough to allow every one or two group members to peruse as part of the context for the session.
Distribute some magazines to the group and encourage them to take a few moments to look through the newspapers and magazines, particularly the advertisements, to see how much we’re worried about death. After a few minutes, ask:
- Death is something most of us seldom talk about, but that controls so much of what we do. In what ways are we trying to “cheat” or delay death?
- In what ways do terrorists, politicians, entertainer,s and advertisers take advantage of our fear of (and fascination with) death?
- Why do you think that we human beings – both Christian and non-Christian – fear death so much?
- What might cause someone to not fear death so much and why?
Read Luke 24:1-12, then watch the Bible Background Video.
Tell the group:
Some of us are so familiar with the resurrection story that it’s hard to experience it in a fresh or new way. As we look through the story this morning, look through the eyes of these women who make the discovery and try to see the experience through their eyes!
- What were the women coming to do – and why did they wait a full day to do it?
- Why do you think the women would have come so early to do their work?
- When the women arrived at the tomb and found the stone rolled away, what thoughts might have gone through their mind?
- Why would they not have immediately thought, “maybe he’s alive again?”
- Why might God have chosen such fearful messengers to announce Jesus’ resurrection?
- In a society that dominated by males, why do you think God chose these women to first experience Jesus’ resurrection?
- For what reasons were these women more suited to receive the message than the men?
- Why do you think the women and the twelve didn’t understand or believe Jesus when he originally told them what would happen ?
- Why do you think the apostles didn’t believe the women, even after Peter saw for himself?
Continue by asking questions like:
- In what ways do people understand Jesus’ resurrection to be Good News and why?
- Where do you understand the cross and the empty tomb to be inseparable parts of God’s Good News?
- In what ways does this Good News speak affect your life today?
- In what way are you controlled by death, or afraid of death – your own, or someone else’s – and how does Jesus’ resurrection address that?
- What claim do you think the events of Easter Sunday have upon us, at least in terms of what it calls us to do or be for others?
Close with prayer, thanking God for the Good News of Jesus’ resurrection this Easter Sunday!
Writer: Jon Parks