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Serving is a Riot!

November 4, 2018

What does God expect from those who lead his church?

The gospel has power to transform a CITY (Acts 19:1-41)!

  • When Word and Spirit come in power, Christ is HONORED (Acts 19:1-20)
  • The powerful gospel disrupts a city (Acts 19:21-41)

Spirit-empowered leaders EQUIP disciples (Acts 20:1-38)

  • Leaders initiate a ministry of ENCOURAGEMENT (Acts 20:1-12)
  • Leaders equip DISCIPLES to serve Christ and his church (20:13-38)
  1. Acts 20:13-17
  2. Acts 20:18-27
  3. Acts 20:28-31
  4. Acts 20:32-38

Getting started:

  • Head (what I must consider):
  • Heart (what I must believe):
  • Hands (what I must do):

Discussion Guide:

Main Idea: God calls his Spirit-empowered leaders to build his church by discipling others with his message of grace and to guard his church against divisive false teaching.


Recently Emily Thomes described her pre-Christian beliefs as “salad bar religion”, meaning she was picking and choosing what she believed from religious ideas about God and faith seen in our culture. Where have you experienced “salad bar” religion in your family, neighborhood or work?

After Paul’s return to Antioch (Acts 18), he begins a 3rd journey (Acts 19-20). What is the impact of Spirit’s work in Ephesus (Acts 19:1-20)? Why does God work in such extraordinary ways? Why is it necessary to receive the Spirit (Acts 19:1-7)? What is the relationship between faith in Jesus and receiving the Spirit (John 3:1-16)? What is the response to God’s power (Acts 19:17-20)?


Read Acts 19:21-41. The Temple of Artemis was known as one of the seven wonders of the world. Why was Demetrius so angry at Paul (19:23-27)? Why does the gospel often conflict with the economic interests of people even in our day? How did God protect Paul from violence (19:35-41)?

In Acts 20:1-6, how did Paul encourage his friends? What things did he do with his Christian friends in Troas (Acts 20:7-12)? Why is it significant that Paul raised a man from the dead (see Acts 9:37)?

Though Paul is anxious to get to Jerusalem before Pentecost, he stops in Miletus and summons the leaders of the Ephesian Church (Acts 20:13-38). As he addresses the past, present and future, what actions and attitudes does he model for pastors and church leaders?  


Why was it important for the Ephesians to burn their magic books (Acts 19:17-20)? Is there something in your life that you should get rid of or destroy because it hinders your walk?

What is the role of miracles in Acts 19-20? Does God still use the same methods? Why or why not? How do you see Jesus’ power at work today?

What can Acts 20:18-37 teach us about how Christian leaders should make disciples? How can you help the leaders at Stonebridge practice this example?

ASSIGNMENT: Evaluate your life. If someone in your family, or at work, or school described your lifestyle, what would they say about you? In what ways are you seeking to “finish the course and the ministry you’ve received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God” (20:24)?

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