Husband. Dad to 5. Student Ministry Pastor. Follower of Jesus. Yatta yatta.


I have said numerous times on this blog that I’m not interested in teaching students what to think, but rather how to think.  The latest world events provide prime material for just such a lesson.

Tonight in our guys small groups we decided to capitalize on the debate surrounding the death or killing of Osama Bin Laden.  It made for some great discussion.  Here’s the outline if you wanna dive in and get your students talking.

We opened with this video.

then we followed this basic script for conversation and thinking:


  • What do you think about the Osama Bin Laden thing?  
  • What do you think about him being killed by the U.S. Navy SEALS?  
  • What do you think about celebrations in the streets?  
  • Was this revenge or justice?”

READ: Romans 12:14-21  (one side of the issue at hand)


  • What does this have to do with the Osama Bin Laden thing? 
  • How do you tend to respond when you’ve been wronged? 
  • What does this passage teach about revenge?
  • How do you know if “as far as it depends on you”, you’ve done all that is required for peace? 
  • What does this passage mean for those in the police force or the military today?

  • How does this video relate to the passage in Romans 12?
  • Why was he unwilling to die for his enemy? What do you think you’d do if it was you? 
  • Who do you think you would die trying to save? 
  • What do you think about Chris Plekenpol’s assertion that we treat God like terrorists treated him?
READ: Romans 5:5-8
  • How does this passage relate to the I am Second video we just watched?
  • What does this passage tell us about God, ourselves, and our enemies? 
  • What difference does this text make in for those who follow Jesus?  

READ: Romans 13:1-5 (the other side of the issue at hand)

  • How does this passage relate to the Romans 12 passage? (Make note that it is IMMEDIATELY following chapter 12’s text)  How are they different?  How do they build on one another? 
  • What do you agree with or disagree with in this passage? 
  • What kind of authority is the kind we should submit to?  
  • How do you know when an authority is set up by God and when one is not?  
  • Do you think that the U.S. armed forces were used by God to bring justice or used by the evil one to bring about revenge?  Or do you have a different view all together?  What evidence would you give to support your answer? 
There you go my youth ministry friends.  If you end up using it, be sure and comment sometime and tell me how your discussion went.  Praying with you that our students learn how to think and translate life and faith in the real world.


  1. You know I’m not in youth ministry Brian, but I LOVE LOVE LOVE that you teaching your student to THINK.

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