Simon believed, he got baptized, he followed Philip around town and still he wasn’t saved. Why? How can we be saved and stay saved? Listen as we talk about the ultimate fruit that validates salvation.
– Spiritual signs and wonders are pointers to Jesus. What was Simon fixating on and how does this explain why he was most likely not saved?
– What was the content of Peter’s rebuke to Simon? After Peter rebukes Simon, how does Simon respond and how does his reaction reveal that he doesn’t understand repentance and faith?
– Let’s suppose Simon got what he wanted and received supernatural power from God, but he remained unchanged at the core of his heart in regards to repentance, true faith in Christ and deliverance from bitterness and iniquity. How would Simon be a good example of Jesus’ warning in Matt 7:21-23? What is the wisdom or warning we gain when we connect Acts 8 and Matthew 7 regarding signs and wonders?
– How might we fall into the same trap that Simon fell into? Other than signs and wonders, what other things can easily become the focus of our lives?
– In our hearts, there is no multi-tasking. The eyes of our heart can only focus on one thing at a time. When we focus on something other than Jesus, our eyes have turned away from Jesus and we become utterly blind to Jesus. Do you agree or disagree?
– Describe a person who is truly gospel-centered versus somebody who only has the vocabulary of being gospel-centered.
– Read Matt 7:13-20. What are the odds of finding eternal life? Why is the Christian journey described as a difficult or narrow road?
– Describe the salvation journey from beginning to end, incorporating these terms in your explanation: Jesus is the Alpha, entry, narrow gate, difficult road, testing and trials, Jesus is the Way, abiding in Christ, Jesus is the Life, Jesus is the Omega, exit door, final destination and final salvation.
– You know a tree by its fruit. Bad fruit indicates a bad tree because the roots are bad. What was the fruit of Simon’s life? What is the ultimate fruit that validates our salvation? How can we ensure that we are on the road toward cultivating this kind of fruit?
– The supernaturally gifted ministers in Matt 7 give Jesus a pile of their works to validate their salvation, but Jesus is not primarily interested in their works because He’s interested in their hearts. If Jesus has your heart, you will do kingdom work but the order is extremely important. Do you find it easy or hard to keep this order right?
– Christian life is in one sense so easy. Just fix your eyes on Jesus and never look away. On the other hand, why is Christian life so incredibly hard? Many get tired of looking at Jesus or they lose interest in Him. One other reason to consider is that we become self-sufficient and think that we don’t need Jesus as much, as if He has ‘equipped’ us enough and now we can do this Christian life on our own. Can you identify with any of these?