A Disciple’s Patient Hope

Passage: Mark 4:26-34

Guide for Group Discussion or Personal Reflection

Bobby Warrenburg - March 5, 2023

A Disciple's Patient Hope

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Read Mark 4:26-34:
     And he said, “The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground. 27 He sleeps and rises night and day, and the seed sprouts and grows; he knows not how. 28 The earth produces by itself, first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. 29 But when the grain is ripe, at once he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come.” 

     30 And he said, “With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable shall we use for it? 31 It is like a grain of mustard seed, which, when sown on the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth, 32 yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes larger than all the garden plants and puts out large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade.” 33 With many such parables he spoke the word to them, as they were able to hear it. 34 He did not speak to them without a parable, but privately to his own disciples he explained everything. (ESV) 


  1. Parables were meant to be meditated on. As you meditate on Jesus’s first parable here (vs.26-29) where he compares the kingdom of God to a man scattering seed on the ground, what do you think Jesus was trying to communicate?
  2. What additional truths was Jesus communicating in the second parable here (vs.30-32), where he compares the kingdom of God to a mustard seed?
  3. What were the various Jewish groups’ of Jesus’s day expectations and hopes for the kingdom of God? How did their expectations impact their response to Jesus?
  4. How do our expectations of what it’s like to follow Christ impact our experience with him?
  5. Right-handed power is force – force of knowledge, force of might, force of weapons. Left-handed power is what you use when you don’t want to just win a fight or a battle, but you want to win over the person. How did Jesus demonstrate left-handed power?
  6. Jesus asks his followers to be involved in spreading his kingdom and healing others even if our own lives and the lives of our family may not yet be completely healed. In fact our imperfection and weakness can actually make our ministry more powerful. Share how you’ve experienced this.
  7. How would you define hope?
  8. Consider one a difficult moment or experience inyour life. How did, or how does the gospel of Jesus Christ give you hope in that situation?
  9. Read theologian Reinhold Niebuhr’s Serenity Prayer: “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference, living one day at a time; enjoying one moment at a time; taking this world as it is and not as I would have it; trusting that You will make all things right if I surrender to Your will; so that I may be reasonably happy in this life and supremely happy with You forever in the next. Amen.”   Talk about this prayer together, and discuss how it relates to a circumstance in your own life.
  10. How can we in this small group encourage each other and help each other recognize the unstoppable power of God’s kingdom when one of us is going through what seems like a hopeless situation?
  11. What was the most helpful idea in this sermon for you personally? What did you sense God saying to you in this message?