Sermon Series Brand New Week 3 Discussion Questions 

Religion is powerful—so powerful it can shape our consciences. Unfortunately, our consciences have been shaped by a version of Christianity that reflects a blend of the rules-focused temple model and the Jesus movement, which is demonstrated by love. As a result, we’re tempted to prioritize law- keeping over loving others. How do we reconcile God’s law with Jesus’ call to love our neighbors? 

  1. When you hear the word “religion,” what comes to mind? Why? 

  2. What are some of the cultural consequences of people viewing Christians as judgmental and obsessed with rules instead of as a radically loving community? 

  3. Read Galatians 5:6, 14. What is challenging about the idea that all of the law is fulfilled in the command to “love your neighbor as yourself”? What is freeing about that idea? 

  4. During the message, Jon said, “Our consciences determine religious realities whether they reflect reality or not.” When has a shift in your conscience changed your religious reality? How did that shift affect your relationship with God? 

  5. Who is one person you need to start being for without demanding anything in return? What stands in the way of you loving that person? 

  6. What is one thing you can do this week to better love the person you identified in the previous question? What can this group do to support you?

Next Steps

Do your beliefs ever get in the way of your love? Do your views hinder you from loving someone? Most of us wrestle with that tension because we haven’t embraced the truth of gospel: if Jesus died for us, he is for us. God’s unmerited love for us and for those around us must inform our consciences and shape our behaviors. 

The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.
Galatians 5:6b 

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