Study 7 of 13 on Discipleship

“In the song God Help the Outcasts….gypsy Esmeralda sings “I know I’m just an outcast…I shouldn’t speak to you…still I see your face and wonder…were you once an outcast, too?” To the church establishment of the day, Jesus was often considered an outcast….So how do we treat those who are not like what we think is OUR norm?…are we so caught up in the cultural wars instigated by the political?…or are we faithful to the example of Jesus who chose to dine with the publican, visit with the Samaritan, and touch a leper so each could know that there are no outcasts in the eyes of Him created all…equal.” –Falvo Fowler

Scriptural Basis:
Matt. 21:28–32, John 8:1–11, 16 Mark 5:1–20, John 4:5–32, Matt. 9:9–13.

Key Text:
“The woman then left her waterpot, went her way into the city, and said to the men, “Come, see a Man who told me all things that I ever did. Could this be the Christ?” Then they went out of the city and came to Him.” (John 4:28-30 NKJV).

1. Have you ever felt like an outcast? How did you handle that?
2. What are examples in the local church of outcasts or outsideness?
3. What are perceived as outcasts in today’s society based on Christian standards?
4. How can the church maintain the high standards of the law while nurturing the climate of forgiveness and genuine kindness? (Eph 5:3 and 1 Cor 13:7)
a. Can or should we aim for both
b. How can we balance living according to the Bible in a world of brokenness without seeming sanctimonious?
5. How can the gospel help heal the brokenness of any society?
a. How did it work with the slaves of America
b. Does that still pertain to many people who seem enslaved by their societal barriers
6. What can a local church do to help members understand this concept of “outsideness” or outcasts?

Christa Sarka from the Hungarian Union contributed to the questions of this lesso