Welcome to the first week of our series Road to the Cross. This series focuses on the events leading up to Jesus’ death on the cross and takes us to Easter. Road to the Cross is a series to help us get acquainted or reacquainted with Jesus so our affection for Jesus grows. This week our conversation is about the betrayal Jesus experiences and what we can learn from it.
Building healthy and life-giving relationships.
What has been new or challenging in your life since last time the group met? Spend 20–30 minutes checking in with each other.
Share Part of Your Story
Growing up, did your family have any traditions for the time period leading up to Easter? What were they?
Small groups work best when everyone feels safe to share life’s joys and struggles. How can we make our small group a safe place?
Taking next steps toward Christ together.
Look back to Mark 14:1-26. Identify the big ideas, key words and main characters in these verses.
What is going on in Jerusalem at this time? Why do you think the Pharisees were so threatened by Jesus? How do you think they felt?
The First Meal
A woman breaks a jar of perfume and anoints Jesus’ head. What is so extravagant about this action?
Some people are upset about it. Why were they upset? Do people get upset about stuff like this today?
Jesus defends her with the statement “She did what she could do.” What is so powerful about this statement?
What are some situations you wish you could do more? How would you “do what you can” in those situations? How can Jesus’ statement provide good perspective?
The Second Meal
Jesus knows he is going to be betrayed. In an act of grace, he talks about it to offer Judas a chance to change his mind. Why do you think Jesus gives Judas another chance?
Have you ever felt like God gave you a chance to turn away from something wrong you were going to do? Did you listen or do it anyway?
What are some things we can do to be more responsive to God’s warnings?
Judas didn’t listen to Jesus’ warning and betrayed him. This means Jesus was betrayed by one of his closest friends. What feelings did Jesus probably experience because of the betrayal? Do you think most people think about Jesus having feelings?
When have you been betrayed? How did that feel?
Why can it be helpful to remember Jesus experienced some of those same emotions? How might this change the way we talk to him about betrayal?
The Passover was an important Jewish religious feast commemorating God’s rescue. Have someone in your group tell the exodus story about the Passover or read Exodus 12:1-17 aloud. Why is the Passover celebration such a big deal?
Jesus rewrites the script of the Passover. He lets them know his body will be broken and blood will be shed to rescue them. What is Jesus talking about? Why is this a New Covenant?
The Passover celebrated Israel’s rescue from slavery in Egypt. What is Jesus rescuing people from? How can we be rescued and become a part of the New Covenant?
Have you experienced this rescue? How did it happen and what was it like?
Today’s conversation revolved around an extravagant gift at a first meal, a betrayal at a second meal and Jesus’ connection to the Passover. Which of these three situations resonates most with you? What’s a next step you can take this week to grow in that area?
INVEST IN OTHERS
Valuing people outside the group and outside the faith.
Jesus came to rescue us. Who in your life are you hoping to share God’s rescue story with? How can your group be praying for that person and your relationship with them?
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