DBS Leader Notes
Pay special attention to questions three and four. The key to multiplication is making sure people carry out the "I will" statements. This ensures breaking free from knowledge based discipleship and embracing obedience based disciple making. Question three generates repentance and creates habits of obedience. Question four ensures others hear the story or are trained to do a DBS with another group of people. The critical elements of an expanding movement are changing lives, story sharing, and person to person training. John 14:15; Matthew 7:24-27; James 1:22-25; Romans 6:16; 1 Samuel 15:22; Matthew 28:20.
Encourage multiplication. Inform the participants that anyone who knows how to do a Discovery Bible Study can lead a Discovery Group. This results in rapid multiplication without compromising the truthfulness of Scripture. Watch Discovery Study Overview (7:58).
Do not teach. The job of the leader is to guide the participants to self discovery. This is done by asking questions, not lecture. "Jesus regularly asked questions. In fact, the Gospels portray him asking far more questions than he was asked."1 People remember what they discover for themselves more than what they hear from others. Build reliance on God by answering questions with questions that help students find answers in Scripture. Show them how to find relevant verses. Let the Holy Spirit be the teacher. This will be new for veteran Bible study leaders, but will pay off in the long run because it builds downline dependence upon the Holy Spirit, not continued reliance upon a human leader.
Deepen a DBS with believers by asking follow up questions. Compliment the answers given by believers, with follow up questions. Use, the terms what, why, how, where, when, and who, to create deeper discussion. For instance, "What does this mean?" "Why is this important?" "How do you apply this to your life?" "When did this happen in your life?" "Where is the best place to see this happen?" and "Who helped you understand this?" Simple secondary questions can generate transformative conversation. Also ask questions that direct people to Scripture to find answers. For instance, "What do the verses in the preceding passage say about why this is important?" or "What does this cross reference tell us about how to apply this truth to our lives?" Regardless of the follow-up questions, circle back and ask for "I will..." responses to questions three and four.
Consider using the DBS list of studies. They are excellent for those new to studying the Bible or leading a Discovery Group. Begin with Stories of Hope, then Creation to Christ, and finally the Church to Eternity.
Divide a large group into smaller groups. DBS works best in groups, however, a group of more than 12 should be divided into smaller breakouts for discussion purposes.
Notice the genre of Scripture. Biblical revelation was progressive as it was recorded. Some truths of Scripture were true for their time only; some are timeless. A helpful resource is Reading The Bible For All Its Worth.
While not necessary, consider additional resources.
1. Warrick Farah, Motus Dei: The Movement of God to Disciple the Nations (Littleton, CO: William Carey, 2021), Chapter 16, p. 283, Kindle