Seven stories of hope: 1. The sinful woman

The first of the Seven Stories of Hope developed by Jeff Sundell (the beard above) for people who want to learn how to follow Jesus.


  • Do Stick to the bible stories.
  • Do only talk 30%, trainers, and let your group talk 70%
  • Do let the Holy Spirit work, rather than looking for right answers
  • Don’t talk about politics.
  • Don’t talk about religion, either good or bad.
  • Don’t chase “rabbits” (subjects which are appealing, but off the topic)
  • Don’t dominate the conversation; let everyone participate

1. First Third of the Disciple Cycle (20-30 minutes)

Trainer tells his/her story, then ask one or more of them to tell their story if they are comfortable doing so.

2. Second Third of the Disciple Cycle (20-30 minutes)

Ask two willing volunteers to read the story below in two different translations, (ask two different people, or you read it once, and one other person reads it once) then pray a short prayer (or ask someone to pray) for The Holy Spirit to teach us. Trainer then retells the story, to model for them to retell later.

Story: The Sinful Woman: Luke 7:36-50

Sword Bible Study Method: (remember: encourage ALL participation and answers)

  1. What does this story say about Jesus?
  2. What does this story say about the sinful woman? What does this story say about Simon the Pharisee (Jewish religious scholar)? What does this story say about the other guests?
  3. What are the sins to avoid in this story? What are the promises to claim in this story?
  4. What are the examples to follow in this story? What are the commands to obey in this story?
  5. Who do you identify with in this story? Why?

3. Final Third of the Disciple Cycle: Practice (20-30 minutes)

  • Get in groups of 2-3, and retell the Bible story above to each other in their own words. (or do a skit to retell the story)
  • Ask 2-3 willing volunteers to retell the story to everyone
  • Trainers share whom they will tell this story to this week. Do they have a friend they can share this story with this week?
  • Share personally (trainers) what you will do this week because of this story. Ask them what they will do because of this story. Pray for them to succeed at what they said they would do. (and other needs)

NOTE: When you get to the second study and beyond here's what you do for #1 First Third of the Disciple Cycle.

Fishing: Who did you retell last week’s story to? How did it go? Were there challenges, questions? Pray for friend and people who heard the story that week!

Following: How did you live out the story from last week in your own lives?

You can download all of the Seven Stories of Hope. Then find some people who want to learn more about Jesus. When you find them, do the study in their world, not yours. Their home or favourite cafe.