Startup: How much can you trust what people say these days? How truthful are they? On a scale of one to ten (one = “totally dishonest,” ten = “completely honest”), rank each of the following categories of people according to your general perception of their overall truthfulness: government leaders; public school teachers; scientists; people in the news media; automobile salespeople; people who write TV commercials; business leaders; and pastors.
SEEING WHAT’S THERE
1. Imagine you were one of the disciples in this chapter’s opening scene in the olive grove. As you watched these events unfold, what would be your thoughts toward Judas? Toward Jesus? Toward yourself and the other disciples?
2. Why do you think the soldiers and officials responded as they did in verse 6?
3. How fully can you define the “cup” Jesus spoke of in verse 11, and why do you think He used this particular word to express what He meant?
4. In verse 36, Jesus tells Pilate what His kingdom is not. What would you add to Jesus’ words to tell what His kingdom is?
5. What are the most important choices made in this chapter, and how would you analyze each one?
6. Think again of the statement about Jesus in John 1:18. From what you see in chapter 18, what is God like?
7. EYE FOR DETAIL—From what you recall seeing in this chapter, try answering the following question without looking at your Bible: After Jesus was arrested and bound, who did the soldiers take Him to first? (See verse 12.)
CAPTURE THE ESSENCE
8. Discuss how much you agree or disagree with this statement: Peter’s actions in verse 10 showed that his basic instincts were brave and righteous.
9. If you knew everything that was going on, and you were standing next to Peter in the high priest’s courtyard in verses 25-27, what would you have wanted to say to him?
10. Why do you think Jesus answered Pilate the way He did in verse 34?
11. If you had only this chapter in Scripture to refer to, how would you use it to help show someone that Jesus is truly God?
FOR LIFE TODAY
12. As fully and as you can, how would you answer Pilate’s question in verse 38? What difference does this definition really make in your life?
13. Think well about the statement of purpose which Jesus gives for His life in verse 37—the reason for which He was born into the world. How much can you identify with this purpose in your own life? To what degree is this your purpose also?
14. Look closely also in verse 37 at what Jesus says about those who are “of the truth” or “on the side of truth.” Get in mind a picture of yourself one year in the future, as a man or woman who listens fully to the voice of Jesus. As this kind of person, what kinds of things do you see yourself doing?
FOR GOING DEEPER
Look again at Pilate’s question in verse 38. Then look at these other verses in John and discuss how John would answer the question himself—1:17; 4:23-24; 7:18; 8:32,44-46; 14:6; 16:13, and 17:17.
(from The Complete Bible Discussion Guide: New Testament, © 1992 by Questar Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved.)