The church knows and listens to the voice of God as He makes Himself and His Gospel visible/known in the Bible by preaching, devotions, teaching (John 10:3-5, 16, 27; 15:7, 15)
• Preaching is regarded as central to listening to God’s voice, central to our gatherings, and should be marked by passion, and be expository in nature (2 Timothy 4:1-8).
• Scripture is the highest authority (2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21; 1 Thess. 2:13; Acts 2:14-47; 4:23-25; 7:1-53; 8:26-35; 13:13-43; 17:10-12;). Even when indigenous people do not have a complete written translation of the Bible in their language, this does not diminish the authority of God’s Word.
• The church must be vitally interested in doctrine – preaching, defending, teaching, the deposit which we must treasure (1 Timothy 3:15; 6:2-3, 20; 2 Timothy 1:13-14). Churches must never shy away from depth in doctrine.
• Our fellowship comes from abiding in Christ which is almost synonymous with reading, studying, memorizing, meditating upon and listening to the Word of God (John 15:5, 7, 11; 1 John 1:1-3).
• True believers listen to and hear God’s voice (John 10:3-5 4, 16, 27; Luke 11:34-35). The church is discipled by teaching, training, and imitation (1 Cor. 4:16; 11:1; 2 Tim. 2:2; Phil. 4:9; Hebrews 13:7, 17).
• The glory of Christ is the Gospel which reflects the glory of God (2 Corinthians 3:18; 4:4-6).
• The Gospel made visual means....loving, serving, preaching, teaching, communion, baptism, discipling, giving, praying, caring…
• God's Word works in us sanctification (John 17:17; 1 Thess. 2:13; 1 Peter 2:2; 2 Timothy 3:16; 1:5; Hebrews 4:12; James 1 - doers of the Word; John 15 vine branches, apart from me you can do nothing; Psalm 119).
Questions to investigate:
a. How do we know the Bible is the Word of God? (2 Timothy 3:16; John 17:17; 2 Pet. 1:20-21; Exodus 3:4; Isaiah 41:21-24; 42:8-9; 1 Thess. 2:13)
b. Is the Bible our only authority? (The answer to this is no. We have other authorities in our lives but the Bible is the ultimate authority. Obey your elders, render to Caesar..)
c. Is it important to pray before reading your Bible? Why? (1 Corinthians 2:9ff)
d. Why should we memorize the Bible? (Psalm 119)
e .Why is our church fellowship so closely aligned with the Bible? (John 15:1-11; 1 John 1:1-3)
f. How do the church and individual believers defend the faith?
g. Have each team member share his/her favorite Bible passage.
h. Why does a true believer revel in the glory of Christ? Why isn’t this true for a non-believer?
i. Discuss the verses in John 10 and 15 about knowing the sheep and the sheep hearing Jesus' voice. What about Christians who have no interest in the Bible?
j. What does the phrase "expository preaching" mean? Can topical preaching be expository?
k. What does the word doctrine mean? Why are many people afraid of this word?