Small Group Studies

Escaping Ordinary Week 4

Jesus knew that He was sending us into an extraordinary life. Luke 12:11-12 records a promise from Him that says, “And when you are brought to trial in the synagogues and before rulers and authorities, don’t worry about how to defend yourself or what to say, for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that time what needs to be said.” The Holy Spirit, who Jesus promised in this verse and other passages of Scripture, came upon believers in the book of Acts. The Spirit gave believers power and the words to say when they needed to courageously defend and share their faith in Jesus. As a result, God fills the church with great boldness.


Who is the most courageous person that you know? Why?


Bible Study Questions

 1. What are some things that hold people back from being courageous?


2. Read Acts 4:1-4. Why were Peter and John arrested?

Acts 4:1-4

"While Peter and John were speaking to the people, they were confronted by the priests, the captain of the Temple guard, and some of the Sadducees. 2 These leaders were very disturbed that Peter and John were teaching the people that through Jesus there is a resurrection of the dead. 3 They arrested them and, since it was already evening, put them in jail until morning. 4 But many of the people who heard their message believed it, so the number of men who believed now totaled about 5,000."

3. Read Acts 4:7-13. Describe Peter’s response to the religious leaders. What was the source of His boldness?

Acts 4:7-13

"They brought in the two disciples and demanded, “By what power, or in whose name, have you done this?”

8 Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers and elders of our people, 9 are we being questioned today because we’ve done a good deed for a crippled man? Do you want to know how he was healed? 10 Let me clearly state to all of you and to all the people of Israel that he was healed by the powerful name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene, the man you crucified but whom God raised from the dead. 11 For Jesus is the one referred to in the Scriptures, where it says,

‘The stone that you builders rejected
has now become the cornerstone.’

12 There is salvation in no one else! God has given no other name under heaven by which we must be saved.”

13 The members of the council were amazed when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, for they could see that they were ordinary men with no special training in the Scriptures. They also recognized them as men who had been with Jesus."

4. Read Acts 4:27-31. What did believers pray for in these verses?

Acts 4:27-31

“In fact, this has happened here in this very city! For Herod Antipas, Pontius Pilate the governor, the Gentiles, and the people of Israel were all united against Jesus, your holy servant, whom you anointed. 28 But everything they did was determined beforehand according to your will. 29 And now, O Lord, hear their threats, and give us, your servants, great boldness in preaching your word. 30 Stretch out your hand with healing power; may miraculous signs and wonders be done through the name of your holy servant Jesus.”

31 After this prayer, the meeting place shook, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit. Then they preached the word of God with boldness."


1. How have you experienced boldness from the Holy Spirit in the past?

2. How does the church’s growth amidst persecution in the book of Acts encourage you in your faith?

3. What is an area of your life where you need boldness?


Take a few minutes as a group to follow the example of believers in the early church in Acts 4. Pray together for boldness. Pray that God would give each of you the boldness and courage to spread His name and message fearlessly, regardless of the cost. Then, be prepared to act on that boldness and courage.

Going Deeper
Courage often requires us to act even when we feel unequipped, unprepared, and have doubts over the outcome of our courageous act. In fact, Scripture is full of people who acted courageously despite their fears and doubts and the obstacles against them. Today we are going to study the stories of some of these men who acted courageously and be encouraged that we, too, can act courageously even when we have questions and feel a little bit fearful. In each of these stories, we will see of the faith of these men overcame their fear and led them to act courageously.

Moses certainly needed courage when God called him out of a life of hiding and isolation for a greater purpose. Of course, he had questions and he even wondered if he was the right man for the job. God graciously reassured him and let him know that he lacked nothing to accomplish this task that was certainly bigger than himself.
1. Read Exodus 3:1-10. What did God call Moses to do in these verses? How was obeying this an act of great courage?
2. Read Exodus 3:11-15, 4:1-9, and 4:10-17. Describe the doubts and fears that Moses had when it came to God’s instruction?
3. How did God respond to Moses each time he expressed his doubts and emotions?
4. Based on what you know about the story of Moses and the Israelites, how Moses act courageously? What happened when He courageously obeyed God?

Gideon was another man who God called to take courageous steps. Like Moses, he had questions. Every time, God gave him the reassurance he needed to know that he was indeed the man to accomplish this courageous task.
1. Read Judges 6:11-14. Describe God’s call to Gideon through the angel of the Lord in these verses.
2. Read Judges 6:15-16 and 6:33-40. Describe the doubts and fears that Gideon expressed when it came to God’s instruction?
3. How did God respond to Gideon when he expressed his doubts and fears?
4. Skim through Judges chapter 7. How did Gideon act courageously? What happened when he courageously obeyed God?

When his own life was at stake, Daniel had to courageously choose faith. Remarkably, Daniel did not express any fear or doubt. He simply courageously took the next steps to honor God and obey Him, no matter the cost.
1. Read Daniel 6:1-9. What act of courage did Daniel have to take in these verses. Daniel did not express fear, but what was at stake if Daniel acted courageously?
2. Read Daniel 6:19. How did Daniel respond in this moment?
3. Read Daniel 10:16-20. What happened when Daniel acted courageously?

Hebrews 11 and Faith:
Scripture is so full of stories of people who acted courageously that it would take a long, long time to recount them all. The writer of Hebrews spent a chapter highlighting heroes of the faith who acted courageously. As we read through this chapter, you will see that faith and courage are intricately connected. The greater our faith is, the greater courage we have.
1. Skim through Hebrews 11 individually. After a few minutes, come back together to discuss.
2. What did all of the men and women mentioned in this passage have in common?
3. How is faith directly related to courage?
4. Look at verses 39-40. What is the reward for those who act courageously in faith?

1. When it comes to your life, do you respond more in courage or fear? Why?
2. Think back to some of the people we looked at in Scripture today and how they responded when God called to live courageously. Who do you relate to the most? Why?
3. What act of courage do you feel like God is calling you to take now? What is holding you back?
Commit to praying for each other this week. Pray that God would fill each one of you with the courage to take a step toward obedience to God this week. Remember, you have no idea the reward on the other side of your obedience if you will choose to obey Him.