Date: April 2, 2023
Session Title: Jesus Died for Me
The Point: Jesus’s death on the cross made forgiveness possible for me.
Get Into the Study
Before asking the icebreaker question, ask if anyone can define the term Imposter Syndrome. Allow time for answers and examples of when students have felt this way.
According to Psychology Today: 5 Ways to Overcome Imposter Syndrome, people who feel the imposter syndrome usually have a gnawing feeling of self-doubt and incompetence along with the dread of being exposed as a fraud. A person might feel inauthentic, question his ability, and convince himself that he isn’t fit for a job that he can do well.
Women and men may experience imposter syndrome differently. A study provided evidence that men who tend to feel imposter syndrome will have more anxiety when they receive negative feedback and will give less effort. However, women who feel “like an imposter” do the opposite—they will work harder after receiving negative feedback. But both men and women who display imposter syndrome tend to live in constant fear of being “found out” rather than having a humble confidence that comes with knowing your experience and worth in a fitting role.
While many people struggle with imposter syndrome, it’s the opposite of what some people’s struggles. Sometimes, we might have more confidence than we should and think we are better than we really are at something!
After this discussion, ask the opening icebreaker question.
At the recent Academy Awards, the nominees in the top five categories received gift bags. Even if they didn’t win an Oscar, they walked away with a gift bag valued at over $126.000 (According to Forbes.com). Lash Fary, the founder of the giftbag company Distinctive Assets, is the person behind the curation of very expensive gift bags which are given each year to the Oscar nominees. The gift bags included items such as:
- An 8-person trip to Faro Punta Imperatore Lighthouse in Italy (valued at over $40,000)
- Trip to another estate in Canada (valued at over $40,000)
- Skincare products and plastic surgery options (valued at over $15,000)
- Clothing and luggage sets
- Drinks and various other products…there will be upwards off 75 brands products in each bag each year. [Click here for more info about these gifts.]
Brands will pay up to $4,000 in fees for the opportunity to gift their products and gifts to the nominees, in hopes that the Hollywood stars will be seen using the gifts and posting about the gifts on social media.
For the Oscar nominees, while these gift bags are high value, there is one gift that is beyond all human gifts we might give to each other. Jesus’s gift is more valuable than any gift bag. You don’t have to be one of an elite, select few like some Hollywood star; Christ’s gift is offered to you.
EXTRA was written by Ryan Sanders. He holds the ThM and MDiv from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Ryan serves as Lay Pastor at McLean Bible Church, is married with three children, and lives in Washington, DC. Find more about Ryan at RyanJSanders.com.
Live It Out [Option from the Daily Discipleship Guide]
Use this activity to reinforce your group study of John 19 by challenging participants to listen to the Scripture content on their own this week.
This option gives group members an opportunity to revisit the content of John 19 by listening to it be read aloud sometime during the week as a time of personal worship.
Live It Out [Option from the Adult Leader Guide, p. 64]
Display or print copies of the song “Were You There (When They Crucified My Lord)?” or similar song about the cross. Invite a volunteer to lead the class in singing the song. Afterward, ask members to share their emotions as they sang the song. Invite them to describe what Jesus’ sacrifice means to them personally. Then close in prayer.
- When have you had to admit you aren’t as good at something as you’d like to think are.
- What skill have you been unable to master?
- When have you realized you weren’t as good at something as you had thought?
- What stands out to you about Jesus being crucified between two known sinners?
- Which detail about Jesus’s crucifixion stands out to you as you read this passage?
- What are some ways we can mourn and celebrate the cross?
- What emotions do you experience when you read about Jesus’ crucifixion?
- What can we learn about Jesus’s sacrifice from this passage?
- How did Jesus’ death make forgiveness possible for us?
- How have you been impacted by the death of Jesus?
- Why was it important that there were witnesses to Jesus’ death and burial?
- How does the involvement of Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea give credibility to the death of Jesus?
- What are some ways we can honor Jesus’ death?
- What are some ways people have tried to discount or distort Jesus’ death over the centuries?
For Those in Your Group
Send the following link to your group members as either a teaser before the group meets or as a follow-up thought:
Click here for a 20-minute podcast for both the group member and the leader.