As we grow in the gospel, we must realize our need for one another in this process. As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another (Prov. 27:17). We need to spur one another on to love and good deeds (Heb. 10:24-25).
We must encourage one another to grow in the gospel continually. But what does that really look like?
As believers, we talk about the gospel often, but do we really know what it is and why we need to grow in it? How are we to grow in it together?
What Is the Gospel?
The gospel is the good news of salvation found in the person and work of Jesus Christ.
The gospel is good news for the saved and the sinner alike. We don’t graduate from the gospel. We started here and we will end here (Gal. 3:2-3). The gospel is the power of salvation (Rom. 1:16) in the beginning and it keeps working in us until the end (1 Pet. 5:10).
What Is a Gospel Group?
A gospel group is a group smaller than a group in a worship service that gathers together for the purpose of discipleship.
While we have used many names to describe these groups (Sunday School, Bible study groups, fellowship groups, Life Groups, small groups, etc.), we are going to start using the term Gospel Groups to refer to groups that gather together to study the gospel, to apply the gospel, and to encourage one another to share the gospel.
We are not disallowing any previously used terms, we are simply trying to unite all the different types of groups out there. It will help us as we communicate with new folks about joining one.
- “Sunday” in the title won’t work because many of our groups are going to have to be replicated on another day of the week. We have many people serving on Sunday that can’t be a part of one, so having a “Sunday” School on a Wednesday won’t make sense.
- “School” is a word that causes some people to feel disqualified. I spoke with a man who said he flunked out of school growing up and the thought of school in church made him feel unable to join.
- “Bible Study” is the primary purpose of what these groups will be doing, but we want these groups to be more than just an hour a week – we desire them to be available for one another after the weekly Bible study concludes.
- So for all ages and all groups that are studying the gospel together, we will refer to them as Gospel Groups.
Gospel Group Values
Here are some values that we think are important for all Gospel Groups:
- AUTHORITY – God’s Word is our guide.
- MATURITY – Our leaders are growing.
- AUTHENTICITY – It is safe to be real.
- ACCOUNTABILITY – We keep each other on the right path.
- AVAILABILITY – We are accessible beyond the gathering.
- REPRODUCIBILITY – We grow to multiply.
What Is The Gospel Project?
Starting in September, we will use The Gospel Project as the guide for our Gospel Groups. It is a curriculum created by the Southern Baptist Convention’s publishing arm, LifeWay. These 13-week quarterlies will provide a biblical, united curriculum for all in the church.
The Gospel Project is a curriculum that:
- Walks through the Bible chronologically – We will get to see the big picture in the actual timeline.
- Lets the Bible set the agenda – This isn’t a topical study throwing stories together, we walk through the pivotal sections of Scripture and let it speak.
- Unites all ages – From the youngest to the oldest, all ages will be on the same page together enabling us to have family and multigenerational discipleship.
- Points to Jesus at every turn – Jesus wasn’t a plan B in the Bible. He is the centerpiece of the Old and New Testament and this guide shows that.
- Helps members become missionaries – Every lesson encourages believers to think outside the group. Who are we reaching? Who needs the gospel? How can we bring them in?
If we can get you in a Gospel Group to grow, please contact Jeremy to sign up for one today!