Reflection Guide: The Return of Christ

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Main Idea - Often when we talk about the return of Jesus we either get distracted in speculations about how and when, or we tune out entirely. Paul’s words encourage us to live sober lives understanding that Jesus will return to judge the living and the dead and make all things new. This reality awakens us to our need for Jesus and reminds us that this present life matters to God.

Listen to the sermon audio here.

You can also check out more resources for this series HERE.

Read through the following passages: 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11

Discuss the questions below with your MC or DNA group.

  1. What strikes you when you read this passage? What questions come to mind?
  2. As you read this text, what tensions do you feel?
  3. How does end times mania distract and discourage us from really hearing what Paul is saying here? Why are speculations and complex end times schemes unhelpful and even dangerous to our faith (consider 1 Timothy 1:3-4)?
  4. What are ways you find yourself going through life asleep or drunk on temporary concerns? What practices do we learn in this passage to help us “stay awake.” Consider verse 8. What might this look like practically and how can you help one another cultivate this in your life?
  5. Why is it important that we wait with a sober expectation of the return of Christ? How does our understanding of future things inform our present living?

Kids Worship Questions

  1. What is one thing that stuck out to you in this sermon? What questions come up that you could discuss with your parents or a pastor?
  2. While we wait for Jesus to return, how does Paul instruct us to live? Draw a picture that represents this way of living as we wait for Jesus to return.
  3. Have you ever done something wrong that you wouldn’t want others to know or felt bad about? How is Jesus good news for those who fear God’s judgment?
  4. Paul says in 1 Thessalonians 5:10, “God has not destined us for wrath but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep we might live with him.” Do you believe this? Anyone who trusts what God has done in Jesus can receive God’s forgiveness and new life.