6-Week Series: Against All Odds


Summary: In a small youth group there are 3 keys to growth... God is the main focus.

Two weeks ago we started talking about how we are going to grow our youth group. We said that there are 3 essential pieces to growing the group. Those 3 pieces are ME, GOD, and MY FRIENDS.

We talked about how the most important person to growing our youth group is the person in the mirror. I brought in my best friend and the person I think most about. And I said that the person in the mirror must be committed to God and committed to our youth group.

If we are going to be a functional youth group (which means more than 2 teens each group), we need a strong foundation of teens that are committed to always being here.

We also defined a group as multiple (2 or more) people working together towards one common purpose. We talked a little bit about our purpose and why we exist.

Does anyone know what are purpose is? To DO the Great Commission by LIVE-ing the Great Commandment. GC2. Great Commission is Make Disciples. Great Commandment is to LOVE GOD and LOVE PEOPLE.

This week we are continuing our discussion on how to grow our youth group and talking about how GOD is our Only Hope.

And a couple weeks ago we looked at Peter at one of his worst moments. We saw him right after Jesus’ resurrection. And at this point, Peter had just denied Jesus 3 times… Jesus died on the cross… and Jesus had come back to life. The denial had never been talked about. There was this real awkwardness between Jesus and Peter.

So, Jesus and Peter got their relationship back together and then Jesus told Peter that he was going to die a terrible death. Then, he said 2 words… Follow Me! And Peter’s first response is to look at another disciple and say what about him? How is he going to die? And Jesus said don’t worry about him… You Follow Me!

So, Peter chooses to follow Jesus. And today’s lesson happens about 40 days later. Now, Jesus has ascended into heaven and has left the disciples “in charge” of things. He gives them a command and it is to go and wait until the Holy Spirit comes.

That’s where we pick it up in Acts 2. When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like a blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.

Ok… now put yourself in the disciples shoes. Your Leader and Master and Savior has just left and says go wait. So, they are just hiding in someone’s house. What would you be thinking at this time? Probably nervous, scared, confused, miss Jesus

And all of a sudden this huge wind blows through the house. And you see this flaming tongue in the middle of you and it separates and comes to land on your head. This is weird stuff if you ask me.

All of a sudden you know another language. You didn’t go to school. You didn’t use Rosetta Stone. You just supernaturally know how to speak another language.

So, the disciples go out into the street and start talking to people and everyone around can understand them. Now, this is during a big national holiday (Pentecost) so thousands and thousands of people from all over the world are in Jerusalem. It would kind of be like the Olympics.

And everyone there is amazed and listening and completely confused. These guys are all from the same small region and most of them are fishermen or shepherds. They haven’t owned homes for 3 years. They probably don’t look like these huge, intelligent world travelers.

So, some people say they are drunk. Now I don’t know about you, but I have never met a drunken person who can speak another real language when they are drunk. So, let’s skip down to verse 14… Then Peter (who?) stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice and addressed the crowd: “Fellow Jews…”

And he gives this awesome sermon and proclaims that Jesus is the Son of God and is the Messiah. He talks about how Jesus fulfilled prophecies. He talked about how Jesus died on the cross. He talked about Jesus’ resurrection. He gives one of the best sermons in the Bible and all of the other disciples translate it into their new language.

Ok… we are going to take a quick break from the story and we will get to the ending later. But I want to have a quick discussion about what happened from Peter at Jesus’ crucifixion and this day? What changed?

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