Campus Bible Study Leaders
Welcome to Term 3!
Hasn’t God been kind to us this year? So many new students and the energy, joy and impact of being in-person for the first half of the year and Mid Year Conference! Then moving online wasn’t what we had planned or desired, but God showed that he was so clearly still at work as new students joined each week, Bible Triplets and one-to-ones continued, and students were saved!
And so as we start Term 3 online (and may well finish online as well), we have a great privilege and responsibility as Growth Group leaders to care for and guide those in our groups through this time. What a comfort it is to know that the God who is in control of COVID has given us His Word to equip us for life and godliness… even in COVID times!
Thank you for partnering with us to evangelise, teach, train and send each other as God’s servants into all the world!
Leading a Growth Group
Campus Growth Groups are an excellent context for teaching, training, pastoral care, community, evangelism, modelling, support, outreach, and … You get the idea 🙂 They are a really valuable ministry and we are very thankful for your service in this area!
Since we are online, the general structure will be meeting for an hour each week of Term over Zoom (or equivalent – ask a trainee if you need a hand with this). In your hour, aim to spend roughly 30min understanding and applying God’s word, 15min in prayer, and a bit of relational bump-time / culture setting / announcements / buffer time around the edges. See what works for your group.
Alongside this, we would love you to model and encourage engaging with The Bible Talks online. This will be live on Monday at 12pm, and then available on youtube / the CGG page throughout the week. You might watch together as a Growth Group or join a faculty watch-party – as the trainees in your faculty about the options.
We do want to recognise that online is harder for some, and that lockdown has been draining. So do be gracious and flexible with those in your group and seek to keep reaching out and connecting personally with those in your group. You don’t have to do this alone! Do organise for others in your group to meet with or follow-up with other group members.
Let’s keep being prayerful in our leadership, and if we can do anything to support you, just ask!
- Open Week – week 2
- Jesus gives Hope Mission – week 3
- (long weekend – public holiday Monday wk 4)
- Partnership week – week 5
- Flex week – week 6
- Thanksgiving – Thurs wk 10
- National Training Event – 6-9 December
This term we are working through both 1 and 2 Thessalonians in Growth Groups, and the whole book of Ezekiel at The Bible Talks! Unlike other terms this year, it means that the two series are running entirely independently. We hope the contrast is helpful for you and your groups engaging and discussing God’s word together.
We have broken 1 and 2 Thessalonians up into 9 passages, giving one flexible week. This might be a great opportunity for evangelism in week 3, or if you miss the public holiday in week 4, or to celebrate and reflect together in week 10. It’s up to you 🙂
CGG: 1 Thessalonians 1
TBT: Ezekiel 1-3
CGG: 1 Thessalonians 2:1-16
TBT: Ezekiel 4-7
TBT: Jesus gives Hope for the Struggling / Capable / Indifferent
CGG: 1 Thessalonians 2:17-3:13
TBT: Ezekiel 8-11
CGG: 1 Thessalonians 4:1-12
TBT: Ezekiel 12-24
CGG: 1 Thessalonians 4:13-5:11
TBT: Ezekiel 25-32
CGG: 1 Thessalonians 5:12-28
TBT: Ezekiel 33-34
CGG: 2 Thessalonians 1
TBT: Ezekiel 35-37
CGG: 2 Thessalonians 2
TBT: Ezekiel 38-39
CGG: 2 Thessalonians 3
TBT: Ezekiel 40-48
Jesus gives Hope
This term, we are working together to share the great hope that Jesus gives. In week 3, there will be three different evangelistic talks by a CBS grad – Vincent Chan, currently serving as a minister in Fairfield. In preparation, please encourage your groups to be praying for five unbelieving friends and chatting about who you can invite (always in an inclusive way, aware of any unbelievers who may be part of your group).
In week 3, there are a few options for encouraging evangelism in your group:
- you could give your groups the hour to try and connect with an unbelieving friend and invite them to watch a talk
- you could meet for a ‘normal’ growth group and pray for your friends and the talks
- you could run an evangelistic study and invite your friends to join and then stick around for the talk
- you could have a ‘social’ gathering (on Zoom) where you invite some friends, share a few testimonies, and then watch the talk together
We will meet for a combined leaders’ training during the CORE Theology hours in week 1 (Tues 4pm and Thur 2pm). If at all possible, it is expected that you will be at one of these hours. Both of these meetings will take place on Zoom – check your email for the link! Let a trainee in your faculty know if you can’t make it (or don’t get the link) and we will see if we can arrange another catch-up.
There will also be training on Wed at 3pm for online ministry, which will be a great resource for thinking how to make the most of this context. Again, check your emails for the link 🙂
During the rest of term, you will receive ongoing support and training in your faculties.
We expect that you will have completed Strand 4 – Serving Growth Groups by the time you are a Campus Growth Group leader, but if not, do it in your first term of leading (hopefully you have chatted with your ministry trainee about this!).
We are excited to keep growing our culture of evangelism in everything that we do, and Campus Growth Groups will be key to driving and supporting this!
One foundational evangelistic goal is that, compelled by the love of Christ, we desire every student at Campus Bible Study to pray weekly for five unbelieving friends! Can you join us in this – both praying and encouraging this culture on your groups?
Alongside our prayers, there will be:
- mission training in week 1 (Tues 3pm, Thu 2pm) – focusing on invitations and Bible Triplets
- evangelistic outreach talks in week 3 – Jesus gives Hope!
- an evangelistic course – Introducing Jesus – starting in week 4
- and every week, the opportunity to invite a friend to Growth Group, The Bible Talks, to read the Bible with you, or join a Bible Triplet!
In general, there are lots of ways that your growth group can promote and model evangelism. Some of these include:
- thinking evangelistically and inviting friends to Growth Group
- praying for non-Christian family and friends (using language and a manner that expects you may have unbelievers in your group already – if we don’t talk like this, then our groups won’t feel comfortable inviting their friends
- meeting up 1-1 with group members (in person or on the phone)
- modelling, organising and encouraging evangelistic bible triplets
- doing walk-up one week each term in bible study (if we can!)
- running explicitly evangelistic bible studies
- praying for missionaries in your group
- … be creative 🙂
Just if you aren’t exactly sure who the staff are…
- Campus Senior Staff
- Arts, FBE, UNSW Art and Design
1 Timothy 4:15-16
Practice these things, immerse yourself in them, so that all may see your progress. Keep a close watch on yourself and on the teaching. Persist in this, for by so doing you will save both yourself and your hearers.
English Standard Version
Hopefully you all went through this with a trainee before you committed to leading, but if not, these are our broad expectations of Bible study leaders.
“Practice these things, immerse yourself in them, so that all may see your progress. Keep a close watch on yourself and on the teaching. Persist in this, for by so doing you will save both yourself and your hearers.” 1 Tim 4:15-16
Practice these things (What is your role as a leader?)
- Pray for your group (pray for the individuals, for your time together, for growth and evangelism – if you desire your group to be or achieve something, pray for it)
- Attend a leaders’ team and work with your co-leader to faithfully prepare for the study
- Work out how to care for your group (this doesn’t mean doing everything yourself!) – aim for everyone in your group to be met up with 1-1 at least once in the Term (which may be you and your co-leader diving up the group for one-off catch-ups, or dividing up the group to meet in a number of 1-1s…or even Bible Triplets!)
- Follow up group members, particularly unbelievers and those not coming regularly
- Seek to train up other leaders in the group (start by giving them responsibilities in small ways, but it could also mean asking them to lead a study)
- In a mixed group, the expectation is that the male will lead the studies, rather than the female. Yet they are both in a leadership position, and so are to prepare together and to look after the group together (1 Tim 2:8-15, 1 Cor 11).
- Engage in personal evangelism – model, pray for and encourage evangelism in your group
- Be an active and regular member of your local church
Keep a close watch on yourself (What areas of godliness have you been growing in? What are you struggling with?)
- See 1 Tim 3:1-13; Titus 1:5-9 for expectations of leaders regarding godliness (self-controlled; humble; growing in maturity; not a recent convert; not addicted to alcohol; not greedy; sexual purity). In summary, people who are growing in maturity.
- Show progress in godliness (1 Tim 4:15-16) – this is to be an encouragement and example to your group
Be above reproach in your godliness (is there anything that you don’t want exposed?)
- Don’t date an unbeliever
And on the teaching– these are taken from AFES doctrinal statement (What do you disagree with? What don’t you understand?)
- The divine inspiration and infallibility of Holy Scripture as originally given and its supreme authority in all matters of faith and conduct.
- The unity of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit in the Godhead.
- The universal sinfulness and guilt of humanity since the fall, rendering men and women subject to God’s wrath and condemnation.
- The conception of Jesus Christ by the Holy Spirit and his birth by the virgin Mary.
- Redemption from the guilt, penalty and power of sin only through the sacrificial death, as our representative and substitute, of Jesus Christ, the incarnate Son of God.
- The bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.
- The necessity of the work of the Holy Spirit to make the death of Christ effective in the individual sinner, granting him or her repentance towards God, and faith in Jesus Christ.
- The indwelling and work of the Holy Spirit in the believer.
- The expectation of the personal return of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Persist in these things (How are you growing yourself and your group?)
- Commitment to regular personal Bible reading and prayer
- Commitment to personal evangelism
- Core theology
- Core training (if you haven’t done Growth Groups, it’d be great to do that as you lead a Bible study)
- Faculty leaders’ team where possible, and combined leaders’ training in Wk 1 of each Term (during the Core Theology hours)