An adaptive plan for groups meeting online for Session 4.
Session 4: Justified
Suggested Week of Use: March 22, 2020
Core Passage: Romans 3:21-4:3
Adapted Group Plan for Groups Meeting Online
1. Study Romans 3:21–4:3 in preparation.
Use the Explore the Text section in the Leader Guide or the Key Words and Commentary in the Leader Helps of the Daily Discipleship Guide to broaden your understanding of the key words Paul uses in this text. Pay close attention to Romans 3:24 and the words and phrases included.
2. Create the group meeting id.
If needed, create a unique meeting id using the online meeting tool you selected.
3. Send an email or social media post to the group.
Suggested wording: We all fall short when it comes to God’s righteousness. Sin is the great equalizer for all people. In Romans, the apostle Paul explains that through faith in Jesus we find God’s grace and His willingness to cover our shortcomings. Let’s celebrate God’s gift of salvation this week!Focus on Romans 3:21–4:3 in your Bible and the comments for session 4 in your Explore the Bible Personal Study Guide. Be sure to focus on Romans 3:24 and the words and phrases Paul used.
We will meet at (add time) using (name of online tool). Here is the link to our meeting: (add meeting id).
Attach a digital version of the Personal Study Guide, session 4 or Daily Discipleship Guide, session 4.
4. Listen to the Adult Leader Training Podcast.
Go to https://goexplorethebible.com/adults-training/ for an overview of the main points and some key ideas from this lesson.
5. Create a plan.
The following plan is an adaptation of the plan provided in the Leader Guide, Daily Discipleship Guide, and Leader Pack download. It is abbreviated based on best practices for teaching online.
Begin. As people join the online group, inquire about their experiences with social distancing.
After most have arrived, emphasize experiences shared that point to feelings of separation from others and being standoffish from others. Compare this separation to being distant from God due to sin.
Say: The major portion of the beginning of Paul’s letter focused on the fact that everyone falls short when it comes to God’s righteousness. In Romans 3, Paul shifted to the solution to this problem by explaining that only through faith in Jesus can a person find God’s grace to cover shortcomings.
READ Romans 3:21-23. Call attention to this paragraph or section on page 36 of the PSG and page 37 (Day 1) of the DDG: God saw no distinction between Jews and Gentiles. They all have the same need. They all receive the same benefit. They all receive it the same way. They are all sinners granted salvation through the work of Jesus alone.
DIRECT the group to read the paragraph except using the word “we” instead or “they” in the paragraph. You may even want to direct them to write the word “we” over “they” in their copies of the PSG or DDG.
Ask: How is sin the great equalizer?
READ Romans 3:24.
Ask: What word or phrase in verse 24 stands out the most? How does that word or phrase counter the reality of verse 23? (PSG, p. 37: DDG, p. 35) Use information from your study to briefly explore the significance of each word or phrase.
Ask: How might we explain and illustrate how Jesus’ sacrifice redeems those who believe in Him as Savior?
Challenge: Encourage the group to complete the Bible Skill activity (PSG, p. 38, DDG, p. 35) later that afternoon.
Summarize the rest of the passage, using the outline of the passage included in the PSG (see passage headings) or the outline included on page 34 of the DDG (Through Faith, In Jesus, For All People). Point out that this is one way of summarizing the gospel. Challenge the group to look for ways of sharing Jesus with their neighbors as we all practice social distancing.
If using the Daily Discipleship Guide, encourage the group to use the daily features in the week ahead to gain deeper insight into Romans 3:21-4:3.
RELATE: Invite the group to share prayer requests. Discuss ways the group can keep up with each other during this coming week.
6. Focus on Relationships
Set a goal of contacting a certain number of group members daily to simply pray with them. You may want to do it by text or phone.
Be sure to send digital copies of the next session to group members who do not have a print copy. If using the Personal Study Guide, encourage them to read the passage and comments prior to the nest online gathering.
Send a message by Wednesday, giving any insights gained from the Bible Skill as a way of encouraging the group.