Jesus and the Demon-Possessed Man - Gospel According to Luke Conversation #5

Message Details: Watch or listen to this message
Message Text: Luke 8:26-39
Message Theme: We've still got demons today. They go by different names and appear in more subtle ways. We must not allow them a comfortable place in our lives. Let's allow Jesus to cast them out.

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Group Discussion Questions

  1. Can you remember a time when you realized someone was constantly being made a scapegoat (or “whipping boy”) whenever something went wrong?
    (Perhaps it was in school or in your neighborhood or at your workplace, etc.)
    Share your experience with the group.
  2. Why is there such a natural human tendency to blame bad things on those who are not readily accepted by society?
    How have you observed that happening in your world today?
  3. Can you tell about an experience that was impossible to explain in natural ways?
    In other words, tell about a time when you sensed some kind of supernatural force (evil or good) was involved in unexplainable ways?
  4. On a scale between 1 and 10, 1 being a completely material existence with no supernatural action and 10 being a world where supernatural forces are always at play, where would you place your views about the interaction of supernatural forces in the world?
  5. Collin used the analogy of Scooby-Doo episodes to describe how most people in our world view the presence of ghosts or monsters in our world.
    We tend to believe there's always an explainable, physical force behind the evil in our world.
    How does the pressure to see everything this way cause us to focus so intensely on the question of the supernatural that we can fail to grapple with the real challenge that Jesus is presenting for our lives?
  6. Read Luke 8:26-39.
    What stands out in this story to you? What stands out about the response of the people in the region to Jesus?
    How would you respond to this scene if present?
  7. Collin mentioned 2 factors that played a role in this story and similar stories in the early church in Acts 16:16-40 & 19:11-20:1.
    (You'll have to make a decision whether to dive into these stories or not with your time.)
    Fear and economic loss were threats in each story. How do you see those factors affecting our lives today?
  8. Do you agree or disagree with the following quote from Collin’s sermon?
    Share with the group why you see this the way you do.

    "As much as we pray for God to show up and do mighty wonders, I wonder if some of us have become more comfortable with tolerating and managing sin and the demonic in our lives more than we’re comfortable with the uncontrollable power of Jesus that might just change everything in our lives if we invited him to have his way in our lives.

    Some of us have evil cornered and chained in our lives. It’s sin we return to. It’s sin we’ve learned to manage. It’s sin that others won’t find out. It’s sin that leads to our economic advantage.

    And we don’t like it when anyone convicts us that the sin has to go. We don’t like it when Jesus shows up and starts casting out demons.

    We like Jesus when he forgives our sins. We don’t like it when Jesus starts meddling and trying to cast out all of the demons because we’re not sure we want them to leave."

  9. How do you see evil or the demonic at play in our world today?
  10. What can you do to guard against the subtle yet powerful influence of the world around us in shaping how you respond when you are tempted to justify protecting your own comfortable position instead of caring for others as Jesus calls us to do?
    What is our protection? (Consider the Armor of God in Ephesians 6.)