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Dinner with a Perfect Stranger: An Invitation Worth Consideringby David Gregory
Reading Group Guide
1. WEEK ONE: CHAPTERS 1—4
What was your initial reaction to the premise of the book?
Do you ever wish you could have some sit-down-and-talk time with God? Why? If you could sit down one-on-one with Jesus, what are two questions you would like to ask him?
Is there such a thing as actual reality? Why is it important for our belief system to correspond to reality? What difference does it make if it does not?
Whats wrong with saying about someones belief system that “Its true for them”?
How is Christianity distinct from the other primary world views, such as Islam, Hinduism, and atheistic naturalism (the material world is all there is)?
How does the Christian concept of God differ from the Islamic concept of God? Why does this matter in regard to humanitys deepest longings? How does your experience relate to this?
On page 28, Jesus makes the statement, “You dont want what youre ultimately trusting to be wrong.” What are you ultimately trusting concerning your eternal destiny? How do you know whether you will be with God for all eternity?
What are you trusting in the day to day aspects of your life, to live life to the fullest?
2. WEEK TWO: CHAPTERS 5 & 6
Why isnt God interested in having people try to perform for him? What is the implication of this for your own life?
If Gods business is restoring relationships, what does he want your response to be toward him? Toward others?
What do you think are the primary indicators that humanity is in rebellion against God?
Are there rips in the fabric of your life that only God is big enough to fix? Do you go to him with these things? How do you think he wants to use those rips for good purpose in your life (Romans 8:28-29)? How can you cooperate with God in his fixing process?
How does Islam water down Gods perfect holiness and justice? What is the way God can be both perfectly just and forgiving at the same time (see Romans 3:23-26)?
How would you answer the question Jesus poses to Nick on page 56: “Dont you think God loves you at least as much as you love Sara?”
Discuss the parable Jesus tells of the two schoolboys. How would describe the character of the friend with the better grades? How is God like this friend, only more so? Why?
What should be the impact on your life of knowing that God longs to have you with him, both in eternity and in your daily life now?
If you have not received the free gift from God that Jesus explains on page 58, what is keeping you from doing so now?
3. WEEK THREE: CHAPTERS 7 & 8
How is belief in God not a blind leap of faith? How is belief in Jesus as God in the flesh not a blind leap of faith?
What happens to someone on the inside when they place their trust in Jesus Christ?
If Jesus came to restore us to our original design, is God living in us part of how we were designed to live? What are the implications of this for you own life?
What aspects of your life would you like to change, but you dont seem to have the strength to do so? How does God want to be the one to do them through you?
In what sense is marriage “not about rules”? Why can Gods relationship with us be described the same way?
What does it mean to you personally that God became human?
Jesus said that he came to reveal the Father. Based on what you know about Jesus, how would you describe God the Father?
Most of the New Testament teaching on hell comes from Jesus himself. How does knowing this affect your view of hell?
How would you explain Gods purpose for the present time? In what sense will one day everything be made right?
What are the implications of the fact that God chose to suffer more than his creation
Are there hurts in your life that it seems God doesnt care about? If you are willing to share, what is one of them? What does this chapter have to say about whether God actually cares or not?
How does God use personal pain in His plan of restoring his relationship with people? Have there been wounds in your heart that have driven you to God? What were/are they? How did they drive you to Him?
4. WEEK FOUR: CHAPTERS 9 & 10
Are you stuck on a performance basis with God, trying to please Him through your own efforts? How does He want you to depend on Him living through you instead?
In what way is “God living in you” the best part of the message of Jesus? What difference should it make if God lives in us?
If God lives in you, is it possible to love those whom you dont have a positive emotional response to, at least at times? How does this happen in a practical sense?
Read the gospel of Luke, chapter 15. If you have placed your trust in Jesus as your Savior, is God “doing back flips” over you? What is the implication of that for you?
From the characterization in the book, how would you describe Jesus? What kind of person is he? What qualities of his stand out to you the most?
Which of the following aspects of the good news of Jesus Christ is most important to you:
·getting your sins forgiven
·being with God in eternity
·have a real relationship with God now
·receiving a changed heart with new desires from God
·God living in you now and forever
Overall, what was the most important aspect of the book to you personally?
What questions remain in your mind concerning any of the issues the book raised? Is getting an answer to these questions important to you? How are you going to go about getting your answers?
What is the personal application for you of Revelation 3:20, the Bible verse that the book closes with? How can we dine with Jesus daily?
What are action step(s) you would like to take concerning yourself as a result of reading this book?
What are action step(s) you would like to take concerning someone else as a result of reading this book?
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