Wednesday, December 01, 2010

The 7 signs of john

In Neil Cole's book Organic Leadership, he shares something called "The 7 Signs of John" (pp. 263-265) that was apparently first written down by Jaeson Ma in his book Blueprint. At any rate, Neil has a nice article with a downloadable worksheet on his CMAResources page (I highly recommend you visit this article).

This is such a cool idea. It is a simple process for evangelism and starting churches based on the words that the apostle John writes near the end of his Gospel. He said, "Therefore many other signs Jesus also performed in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these have been written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name" (John 20:30-31).

The seven signs from John are:
1. The turning of water into wine (2:1-12)
2. The healing of the royal officials son (4:46-54)
3. The healing of the paralytic at the pool of Bethesda (5:1-17)
4. The feeding of the five thousand (6:1-14)
5. The walking on water (6:15-25)
6. The healing of the man born blind (9:1-41)
7. The raising of Lazarus (11:1-46)

The way it works - which can be applied in any size group; either one-on-one, in a small group, or even a large group - is that each week the person or persons you are sharing with are encouraged to read one of the stories once every day (read the same story each day). So in the first week, they read the story of Jesus turning water into wine every day. At the end of the week when you get together and read the passage, you ask four simple questions and have a discussion about the passage. The questions are:
1. What does this story say to you about human nature?
2. What does this story say to you about the person of Jesus?
3. In what ways does this story affect your way of thinking about your own life?
4. With whom should you share this story?

He says discussing the answers to these questions with anyone who is a spiritual seeker can easily be done once a week over a cup of coffee, or anything. He also says that every organic church he has ever started began going weekly through these stories and simply answering the questions. And he has yet to go through this process and not have someone commit to following Christ.

I like this. I'm thinking I may do this in a sermon some Sunday. I am also wondering about the possibility of starting a Sunday School class or small group around this idea. Or maybe even using this for our council devotions next year (I had actually been thinking of having the council just read through the Sermon on the Mount before every meeting). I dunno. This just seems so simple, yet biblical and profound at the same time. Good stuff.

Peace out; and in.

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