CELEBRATE HEAVEN! Bible Talk Discussions on Rev 20, 21, 22

Scripture: Revelation 20:10-15

Big Idea: We Will All Face Heaven or Hell

Ice Breaker: 

  • What are your favorite home movies of you and/or your family?
  • What's the most embarrassing thing caught on film of you or your family or friends?
  • Contemplate this (just contemplate, not sharing publicly this one) — what if the most sinful thing you've every done were caught on film, what would that look like in and HD three camera shot? What if it were shown here in our small group, how would you feel? How would that be intensified if the apostle Paul came in and joined our viewing party? And how would you feel if Jesus, Himself, came in and sat down to watch and listen to your most dark and shameful home movie? It's that very idea that brings us to the Scripture we will consider today. Turn to Rev 20:10.

Read Revelation 20:10-15

Questions:

  • v. 10 How is the torment described in the lake of fire and sulphur?
  • v. 11 Why would the earth and heaven flee from the presence of God on His white throne? How would you respond if you suddenly came into the presence of God in all His glory?
  • v. 12 What are the different books that are mentioned on the throne? What role will these books play on judgment day for all people great and small? When it's your turn to appear before the throne, what will happen (describe the details)?
  • v. 15 What happens if your name is not written in the book of life? How was the lake of fire described in v. 10? What happens if your name is written in the book of life? How can you ensure that your name is written in the book of life? If you knew for certain that your name was written in the book of life, how would it affect the way you live your days on earth?

Final Charge: Study the Scriptures to gain clarity on inclusion in the book of life. With that security, live passionately for Christ's grace and for other's inclusion!


Scripture: Revelation 21:1-8

Big Idea: Radical Earth Makeover

Ice Breaker: 

  • What do you most like about shows like "Radical Home Makeover"?
  • If your home was chosen for the show, what would you hope to see when they yell "Move that Bus!" and you gaze at your newly renovated home?
  • How would your life be different in your sweet new home? 
  • As the show's seasons progressed, they stopped trying to renovate and started to completely tear down the old home and build a brand new home on the same spot. That idea seems to be what God has in mind for our home here on Earth as we now read about the New Earth that He will prepare for us:

Read Revelation 21:1-8

Questions:

  • v.1. Why are both heaven AND earth described to be made new? When you think about eternity does it usually include a new earth or just heaven? Describe some of your imaginative speculations about eternity.
  • v.2-3 Will we go up to be with God or will He come down to be with us? Describe how that might look when earth is made new and the heavenly realms come down to join the new earth. (Promote some imaginative brainstorming.)
  • v.4 What personal pains or mourning will you be glad to see removed in the new earth? What particular pain removal among your family and friends will you most celebrate? (This might include disease, mental health issues, emotional disorders, chronic ailments, etc.)
  • v.6-7 All this wonder and glory is a guaranteed inheritance for those of us who are "victorious" - what does that mean to an audience in 95AD reading this letter? What does it mean to us?
  •   v.8 What is the contrast to "victorious" as described in v.8? Which of these sins is most alarming and challenging to you?  
  • What can we do to ensure "victory" and security as we look forward to a radically new home, new body, and new intimacy with God?

Final Charge: Be sobered by the warning of this passage. Be astounded by the encouragement of this passage. Let the conviction of this passage become a springboard for you to study His Word to be sure that your victory will be based on Scripture rather than on tradition or good intentions. 


Scripture: Revelation 22:1-5

Big Idea: Gazing into the Face of God in a Garden Paradise

Ice Breaker: 

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  • Who is someone — maybe your child, your spouse, your mom or dad — into whose face you love to gaze? What feeling sweeps over you when you look into their eyes?
  • How do you feel when someone you love gazes into your eyes?
  • Well … we ain't seen nothing yet! We're about to gaze into the eyes of someone who loves us even more! And the feelings that we experience will be transforming - here's a quote from Heaven: "{cke_protected_1}To look into God’s eyes will be to see what we’ve always longed to see: the person who made us and for whom we were made. And we will see him in the place he made for us, and for which we were made. Seeing God will be like seeing everything else for the first time. We will discover that seeing God is our greatest joy, and life itself. Every other joy of Heaven will be derivative, flowing from the fountain of our relationship with God. Beholding and knowing God, we will see ourselves, and all other people and events, through God’s eyes. We will spend eternity worshipping, exploring, and serving our great God. We will see his breath-taking beauty in everything and everyone around us." Let's see the Bible passage that presents this idea.

Read Revelation 22:1-5

Questions:

  • v1. Let's do our best to imagine and describe each of the elements presented here.
    • escribe the "river of the water of life."
    • escribe the "throne of God and of the Lamb."
    • Describe this Main Street on the New Earth.
    • Finally, describe the Tree of Life.
    • What does this scene remind you of in the Bible? (Eden)
  • v3. Why is it important to stress that nothing here will be accursed (remember Gen 3:17 and the great curse from eating form the Tree of Life)? What will be different from the Garden of Eden and the New Earth? How will living without fear of curse affect your outlook on each day? The curse affected our human nature (death, disease, frustration) and all of creation itself (Romans 8:18-22); without the curse what do you most look forward to NOT experiencing in the New Earth?
  • v4. "They will see His face!!!" What is required of us in order to see the face of God? (Matthew 5:8) What does that say about our transformed state?
  • v5. What would the lighting be like in this room if instead of lamps we had the glorious presence of God? Who will reign forever and ever (if clarity is needed, see also 2Tim 2:12 and Rom 5:17)? What will be our responsibilities (again, use some imagination here) as we reign? What does that say about our transformed state (that we will be in a position to judge angels, take charge over cities, and share reigning responsibilities with God)?
  • What do you most look forward to experiencing in heaven?