Small Group Questions Week 49

The Gospel of Matthew

Week 49 – The Kingdom of Heaven Revisited

Transition:

In the passage from last week, Jesus covered a lot of ground. His teaching was set up by a question

from the Pharisees to test Him. They asked, “Is it lawful to divorce one’s wife for any cause?” Since Jesus

recognized that this was a loaded question, He did not answer it directly, but instead taught the truth about

marriage. (What marriage is according to God.) The conversation then turned to divorce (so He taught God’s

view of divorce). The passage ended with Jesus correcting His disciples (who had jumped to a wrong

conclusion) about marriage and singleness.

Context:

This week Jesus returns to the relationship between children and the kingdom of heaven. In this case,

He reveals that the kingdom of heaven belongs to them. Matthew then shares a story of when a wealthy young

man had the chance to gain eternal life (enter the kingdom of heaven) but did not take it. As he walked away in

sorrow, Jesus commented how difficult it was for a wealthy person to enter the kingdom. This confounded the

disciples. So, Jesus reassured them that their forsaking all and following Him was abundantly worth it.

Opening Questions:

• When you decided to become a follower of Jesus, was there anything that you knew you were going to need

to give up? If so, what was it? Was giving it up difficult for you? Why or why not?

• What are some ways that becoming a follower of Jesus has benefited you personally?

Scripture/Storying:

Matthew 19:13-30

Discipleship Questions:

• Why do you think some people were wanting Jesus to lay His hands on their children and pray for them?

Why do you think His disciples were rebuking the people for doing this? Are there any principles from this

that carry over to us today? If so, what are they? In what ways can they be applied to your own life situation?

• What does Jesus mean when He says that children belong to the kingdom of heaven? How does this affect

you personally? How does it affect how you view and treat others? How does it affect your view of God?

• Why do you think Jesus tells the rich young man, “There is only one who is good”? (Implied...the one who is

good is God Himself.) In other words, what purpose does it serve in Jesus’ conversation with the young

man?

• Discuss how Jesus gets to the actual heart of the young man in answering his question, “Teacher, what

good deed must I do to have eternal life?”. What do you learn from this that can be applied to conversations

you may have?

• How would you respond to someone who asked you, “So, in order to have eternal life, do I also need to sell

all that I have just like Jesus told this man?” If your answer is “no,” how does Jesus’ response about having

eternal life fit into your view of how a person receives eternal life?

• After Jesus mentions how difficult it is for a rich person to enter the kingdom of heaven, the disciples are

perplexed. Why? Jesus then goes on to explain saying, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things

are possible.” What does this mean?

• After Peter points out that the disciples have left everything to follow Him, Jesus lists several blessings for all

who have done this. Which blessings stand out to you and why? How do they help you as you follow Jesus

day-by-day?

Prayer time:

Pray that we ourselves will have healthy attitudes and outlooks about the kingdom of heaven, and

that we will find practical ways to help others do the same.