#3: "Eternal Life"
Discussion Questions and Study Guide

Discussion Questions

  • According to these verses, what is eternal life? 

    • "You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him. And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent" (John 17:2-3).

  • According to these verses, what does it mean to be born again or born anew?

    • But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God" (John 1:12-13).

    • "Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again" (John 3:5-7).

  • According to these verses, what is the manifestation of a new life?

    • "We know that we have passed from death to life because we love the brethren. He who does not love his brother abides in death" (John 3:14). 

  • Open discussion question: what did you learn or how were you inspired by this video?

Group Guidelines for Discussion

  1. No one can dominate or monopolize the conversation, rather give an opportunity for everyone to participate.

  2. No one has a final verdict for interpretation.

  3. Everyone is encouraged to participate whether or not they have the popular understanding.

  4. Do not criticize anyone or cast a negative light and treat each other with love and kindness.

Study Outline with Supplemental Scriptures

 

I.  QUESTION: (timestamp 00:22) Henry, what are some common misunderstandings about Eternal Life?

A.  The most common misunderstanding is to think that eternal life is in the future. This comes from King James' translation of John 3:16 "whosoever believes has everlasting life."

1. From this translation, "everlasting," many interpret as your life going on without ending.

2. But the word "eternal" is defined as "perpetual": without beginning and without end. 

3. It is another kind of life; it is not your life waiting for the future, but it is a life that is now.

4. Knowing eternal life has to be today, which is why Jesus said that He would "give eternal life" (John 17:2): knowing the Father and the Son (see John 17:3)

5. We do not need to wait to have eternal life, but we can have it today.

II. QUESTION: (timestamp 01:30) Could you tell us more about this eternal life? What is it exactly? 

A. We would have to say, "Whose life is perpetual? Whose life does not have a beginning or an ending? 

1. That is God! Only God is eternal ((Deut. 16:27; Isaiah 40:28; Rom. 16:26).

2. So eternal life is God's life (John 6:54; John 17:3; cf. Eph. 4:18).

3. And eternal life is His divine life and nature (2 Peter 1:3-4).

4. It is a life we do not have when we are born physically.

5. Eternal life is referring to a new divine life with God that starts when we believe.

III.  QUESTION: (timestamp 02:03) Jesus said eternal life is to know the Father. Can you tell us more?

A.  It is to know the Father and the Son, and that knowing started when we first came to faith. When we first believed and had the revelation of Jesus Christ.

1. When we first believed in Jesus, and we accepted Him at that moment, we got to know Jesus. 

2. We got to know the Father God, and we received eternal life. LORD's prayer eternal life is to "know" (have a relationship with) Jesus and the Father

B. "But as many, as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God" (John 1:13)

IV.  QUESTION: (timestamp 02:30) What does it mean to be "born of God"? What does that mean, and why is that important?

A.  That is from John 3, where we have this term where Nicodemus asked about entering into the Kingdom (see John 3:4). Jesus says, "You must be born again." (see John 3:3). A better translation of that is "born from above" (John 3:4-7).

1.  It is not just born again; it is "born anew." It is a new kind of birth.

2.  That is why when Nicodemus says, "How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born?" (John 3:4)

3.  Jesus answers, "That which is born of the flesh is flesh" (John 3:6a).

a)  It does not matter how many times you go back to your mother's womb and start all over again. 

b)  You will still be flesh. You will end up the same way.

c)  A lot of people say, "I wish I could do it all over again." If you do it all over again, it is still flesh.

4.   Jesus then says, "That is which born of the spirit is spirit" (John 3:6b).

a)  This is another birth; you are being born of God, the Spirit.

b)  This is a birth from above; this is to be born anew or again.

V.  QUESTION: (timestamp 03:42) How does anything enter into a kingdom?

A.  (Illustration) Jesus said, "You can't enter into the Kingdom of God unless you are born anew. 

1. You can't enter into the Monkey's Kingdom unless you are born a monkey. 

2.  No animal can enter into the Human Kingdom unless you are born a human being.

3.  There is no way to see or perceive or enter into the Kingdom of God unless we are born of God.

4.  We have God's life and God's nature (John 1:12-13; Eph. 4:18; 2Pet. 1:4).

VI.  QUESTION: (timestamp 04:29) So why do we need to be born again? What is missing that we have to be born again?

A.  According to the Bible, we are dead! The Bible tells us that we are dead in our trespasses and sins (Ephesians 2:1).

1.  You may say, "I'm not dead!" Look at all the people in the world. Everyone is active; they are making money; they are having children.

2.  In the Bible, death there is referring to spiritual death.

B.  A person has three parts: their body (physical life); their soul (psychological being); and their spirit (spiritual life); Their spirit is dead in that there is no activity in their spirit in relation to God (I Thes. 5:23).

1.  That is why people all over the earth even after they have a great time, after they accomplished something great, still feel like something is missing. 

2.  There is something empty. There is something not fulfilled in their hearts (John 4:7-26; 7:37-39). 

3.  That part is their spirit saying, "I am crying out for God! I need a relationship with God! I want to be filled with God." 

4.  No matter how rich they are. No matter how successful they are. They are still crying out, "I need a relationship with God!" 

C.  That is to be born anew: at that point, when you say, "LORD Jesus! I want You! I receive You!"

1.  At that very point, the Spirit of God, the LORD Jesus Himself, comes into your being, comes into your spirit and your spirit becomes alive. (Rom. 10:13; Eph. 2:5)

2.  All of us who have been born anew can testify of that time when we first believed and prayed. We received the LORD. We saw Him. We came alive saying, "I didn't know life was like this!" (John 10:10)

3.  That is why we need to be born anew: to have another life, to be alive, to come alive because we were dead. 

4.  That is great news! That is why we preach the Gospel that people can come alive.

VII.  QUESTION: (timestamp 07:19) What does eternal life have to do with oneness?

A.  In First John, chapter three tells us that we know we have passed from death into life if we love the brethren. Brethren means both male and female (I John 3:14). 

1.  If we love the brethren, that is the sign. That is the testimony that we have passed from death into life. 

2.  We are dead in our spirit. How do we know we have life? Because we love the brothers and sisters, the other believers who also have eternal life.

3.  That has everything to do with oneness. 

B. The new commandment is "love one another as I have loved you" (John 13:34).

1.  We cannot love like Jesus unless we are born anew, unless we have passed from death into life.

2.  Unless you have eternal life, you cannot love like Jesus because it is God's life that can love His enemies (Rom. 5:10). 

3.  It is God's life that can love those that are different than He is

4.  We are very different, yet He came to love us.

VIII.  STATEMENT: (timestamp 08:50) I love this phrase that Jesus is the One who is loving my brother. It is not me trying harder to love my brother. It is Him! It is His life loving through me!

A.  That is from His commandment. Love one another "as I have loved you." (John 13:34). It is the same love that Jesus has ( John 14:15-28; 16:7). Right after that, Jesus said to His disciples:

1.  "I am going away." (John 16:7). "It is to your advantage that I go away" (John 16:7). Because if I don't go away, I can only be with you. 

2.  But when I go away, I can come again (see John 16:7)

3.  "I will send another Comforter." (John 14:15) I will come again, and I will be with you forever. (see John 14:15-28; 16:7; 17:26)

4.  So Jesus shows us how we can fulfill His New Commandment by coming into us.

B.  How can you love as Jesus loves? 

1.  This is only possible if Jesus comes into you and lives in you and through you.

2.  So Jesus can live through you so that your love will be part of His love.

3.  His love will be empowering your love.

4.  His love will be strengthening your love and will add eternity to your love.

IX.   QUESTION: (timestamp 10:34) In John 17, Jesus equates eternal life to being "kept in the Father's name." What does it mean to be kept in the Father's Name? Why is that important for oneness?

A.  First of all, this is Jesus' prayer. Jesus said, "I give you eternal life" (John 10:28; 17:2-3), and then he prays, "Father, keep through Your name...that they may be one as We are." Jesus said to keep them in the Father's Name (John 17:11).

1.  In the Bible, "name" is referring to the person.

2.  We see an example of this in Acts, "There is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved" except the Name of Jesus (Acts 4:12). In both Acts 4 and John 17, the word "name" is referring to the Person.

3.  So to be kept in the Father's Name means to be kept in the Father.

4.  Eternal life has everything to do with the Father because we are born of God.

B.  (Illustration) I am Hon because my Father was a Hon. 

1. He was a human being, so I'm a human being. 

2. Physically he is my Father, but spiritually our real Father is God now. 

3. God is our eternal Father, and we need to be kept in Him. 

C.  How does that make us One? As Christians, we have identified ourselves with so many other names. Paul asks, "Why do you say 'I'm of Paul? I'm of Peter? I'm of Apollos'" (I Corinthians 1:12 see also 3:4)

1.  Those Christians have identified themselves with Paul, with Peter, with Apollos.

2.  Today we have identified ourselves with Baptists, Pentecostals, Catholics, Young Earth, Gap Theory, Tongue Speaking, etc.

3.  We have identified ourselves with so many identities other than the Father's Name. 

4.  All of these identities are a factor in our division.

D.  Jesus' prayer is, "Come back to one Name! Come back to the Father's Name." We all have eternal life through the common faith, so stay in that Name. Give up your other names. Yes, you still may go to the Catholic Church or the Baptist Church, or the Pentecostal Church, but what is your real identity? 

1.  Jesus is your real identity!

2.  Our Father God is our real identity.

3.  If we come back to this, then we have one identity. 

E.  (Illustration) I am from Hong Kong, and you are from the United States, but my identity is not from a Hong Kong person. My identity and your identity should be our Father who is in Heaven. 

X.  STATEMENT (timestamp 13:35) We carry our earthly Father's Name. That is our identity in our first birth. There is nothing wrong with having some affiliation with different denominations or different expressions, but it is not our identity.

A.  Political affiliation is not our identity.

1.  In this climate today, people say, "I'm a Republican" or "I'm a democrat." "I voted for Trump" or "I voted for Biden."

2.  Trump becomes your identity, or Biden becomes your identity.

3.  Or anti-Trump becomes your identity, or anti-Biden becomes your identity or anti-Vaxxing, but that is not who we are! 

4.  Yes, you can vote for Trump. Yes, you can vote for Biden--whoever else. 

5.   I wasn't born anew to be a Republican or a Democrat.

B.  Our identity is only in our Father God. That is who we are when we are born anew.

1.  I was born anew to be a Child of God and the same with you, and that is our unity. 

2.  That is why eternal life in the Father is the first gift, "Keep them in Your Name, Father!" (John 17:11) That they may be one. 

XI.  STATEMENT: (timestamp 15:42) When we first came to Christ, we didn't care about denominational affiliations.

A.    When I first came to Jesus, I didn't know about this doctrine or that doctrine. 

1.  I just wanted to tell people my testimony of finding Jesus. 

2.  Any Christians that I meet. I was just happy to say, "Let me just tell you what happened to me!" 

3.  And I want to hear what happened to them. How did you come to love Jesus? Then listen to what they say. 

B.  Then we got complicated. Asking questions like "What is your doctrine?" And, "What church do you go to?" 

1.  Right away, we pigeonholed our brothers and sisters by asking one question: "What church do you go to?" 

2.  Immediately, we have them pegged doctrinally and even politically or culturally.

C.  So, let's not ask that question of "What church do you go to?" Let's just stay in the Father's Name. And not have any other identification as a believer.'

XII.  QUESTION: (timestamp 17:30) What are some things for us to consider? What is a vision for us to cast as we are thinking about this discussion about eternal life? 

 A.  We need to come back to the simplicity of our faith in Christ.

1.  Come back to what it means to be saved. 

2.  Come back to what it means to be "born again" and "born anew."

3.  What does it mean? It means we have eternal life! We have another life!

B.  The bickering and the fighting and prejudice are in our first birth, but now we have another birth. We have eternal life. Because of this eternal life, which is Christ in us, we love the brethren. 

1.  We love those that are different from us. 

2.  We love even those that have contrary ideas from us. Not because we love their ideas. No! We still have contrary opinions.

3.  We can love them despite their contrary ideas. 

4.  That is the takeaway from our discussion here. Let's come back to our eternal life. The life that is really life (1Tim. 6:12). Jesus Christ came to give us life (John 10:10).​

Group Guidelines for Discussion

  1. No one can dominate or monopolize the conversation, rather give an opportunity for everyone to participate.

  2. No one has a final verdict for interpretation.

  3. Everyone is encouraged to participate whether or not they have the popular understanding.

  4. Do not criticize anyone or cast a negative light and treat each other with love and kindness.

Discussion Questions

  • According to these verses, what is eternal life? 

    • "You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him. And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent" (John 17:2-3).

  • According to these verses, what does it mean to be born again or born anew?

    • But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God" (John 1:12-13).

    • "Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again" (John 3:5-7).

  • According to these verses, what is the manifestation of a new life?

    • "We know that we have passed from death to life because we love the brethren. He who does not love his brother abides in death" (John 3:14). 

  • Open discussion question: what did you learn or how were you inspired by this video?

For further study:

  1. One Ekklesia: chap 15

  2. CEI 15