Ephesians 5:22-33 - God's Design for Marriage (Part 2)

Application Questions

  1. What is something God has been teaching you through your Bible reading this week? 
     
  2. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  3. Read Ephesians 5:25-27. What kind of love is described in this passage? What are its motivators and its goals? Husbands, what are some practical examples of how displaying this kind of love towards your wife is different than worldly expressions of love?
     
  4. Husbands, what are some ways you can encourage holiness in your wife by your own words, actions, or example? Is holiness something you desire in your marriage?
     
  5. Read Ephesians 5:28-30. Husbands, consider the way you talk about your wife among your peers. (Such as at work or with other guys.) Do you speak as highly about your wife as you do about yourself? Does the way you talk about your wife convey that you cherish her, or are you tempted to build yourself up at her expense by complaining about what you have to put up with at home? What are some ways you can be intentional about cultivating in your own heart the kind of love mentioned in these verses?
     
  6. Read Ephesians 5:31-33. When you consider that marriage is meant to be a picture of Christ’s sacrificial and unceasing love for us, how does that impact the way you view your own responsibility in your marriage? How does it impact the value you place on your marriage and on the marriages of other believers you know?

Ephesians 5:22-33 - God’s Design for Marriage (Part 1)

Application Questions

  1. What is something God has been teaching you through your Bible reading this week? 
     
  2. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  3. Read Ephesians 5:22-24. What are some cultural expectations that are in opposition to this passage?
     
  4. In what ways is marriage a testimony to others? What are some ways that marriage is a picture of our relationship with Christ? What implications does this have for the significance of the marriage covenant?
     
  5. Wives, how should this passage impact your attitudes and thoughts towards your husband, even when he frustrates you? How does it impact the way you speak about him in front of your friends or your children? 
     
  6. Husbands, do you lead in a sacrificial way that makes it easier for your wife to submit to your leadership, or in a selfish way that makes it aggravating or uncomfortable to submit to your leadership? What are some practical indicators of this in your marriage?
     
  7. What limits are put on the wife’s submission in Colossians 3:18 and Acts 5:29? How do these passages act as a guideline for what husbands and wives should desire from and encourage in one another?

Acts 19:21-41 - A War of Worship: Artemis of the Ephesians Vs. the Risen Christ

Application Questions

  1. What is something God has been teaching you through your Bible reading this week? 
     
  2. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  3. Read Acts 19:21-27. What are the primary motivators (idols) in Demetrius’ life? What are the primary motivators in your life? Are any of them in opposition to the work of Christ in you? If so, confess them and ask your community group to help you stay on guard against such motivators.
     
  4. Read Acts 19:28-34. Have you experienced any times when living as a Christian brought opposition from your peers? What are some truths/values in Scripture that are an affront to our culture?
     
  5. Read Acts 19:35-41. Notice how God protected the disciples, both from being attacked by the rioters, and from being involved in the riot. How can this reminder of God’s protection be applied to our own lives in situations where we feel the urge to stand up for ourselves or prove that we’re right?
     
  6. Take time to pray that God would help you to be a light to the people around you and a testimony to non-believers, even those who loudly oppose the Gospel.

2 Corinthians 12:1-10 - The Thorn of Paul and the Power of Christ

Application Questions

  1. What is something God has been teaching you through your Bible reading this week? 
     
  2. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  3. Read 2 Corinthians 12:1-5. What is something God has done in your life that is so clearly an act of God that you can testify about it to others without boasting? (See Ephesians 2:8-9)
     
  4. Read 2 Corinthians 12:6-10. What trials has God used in your life to humble you and remind you of your dependence on Him?
     
  5. What are some areas in your life where you may be weak? (In regards to spiritual disciplines, disposition, personality, etc.) How might God grow you in those weaknesses or use them to bless others? What are some practical ways you can exercise reliance on God through those weaknesses?
     
  6. Take time to pray that God would use His work in your life to bless others, even if it means using you in ways that you feel weak or don’t feel especially gifted.

Ephesians 5:15-21 - Be Imitators of God (Part 3)

Application Questions

  1. What is something God has been teaching you through your Bible reading this week? 
     
  2. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  3. Read Ephesians 5:15-21. What commands are given in this passage and which ones do you find most challenging to live out in your life?
     
  4. What is one specific way you could personally apply verse 15 by making better use of your time this week? Consider asking someone else (community group member, family member, someone else in the church, etc.) to help keep you accountable in your daily schedule.
     
  5. People often wonder what God’s will is for their lives. Yet, verse 17 commands us to understand what the will of the Lord is. Based on everything in Ephesians 5 that leads up to this command, what is the will of the Lord for your life?
     
  6. Take time to pray that God would help you to grow in thankfulness towards Him and in humility, according to Ephesians 5:20-21. Then, think of a couple practical ways you can intentionally cultivate those attitudes this week. What’s one area that you need to humbly submit to others in order to show your reverence to Christ? 

Ephesians 5:1-14 (Part 2) - Be Imitators of God

Discussion Questions

  1. What is something God has been teaching you through your Bible reading this week? 
     
  2. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  3. Read Ephesians 5:3-4. What six sins are we instructed to “put off”? What light does 2 Corinthians 6:16-7:1 shed on this idea of putting off filthiness?
     
  4. Consider Ephesians 5:4 along with Matthew 12:33-37. Why is it so crucial to be holy even in our speech? (See also James 3:1-12)
     
  5. Read Ephesians 5:5-6. What warning is given in this passage? 16. Paul gives a similar warning in I Corinthians 6:9-11. Based on these two passages, why would a sexually immoral person, an impure person, someone who is covetous, have no inheritance in the kingdom of God?
     
  6. Read Ephesians 5:7-14. When you consider the contrast between light and darkness in this passage, ask yourself whether there are certain areas of your life – your thought processes, your attitudes, your social media habits – that are living in darkness or perhaps living in a “gray” zone. Are there changes you need to make in your life, based on Paul’s admonition to live in the light? How can your community group help you make these changes?

Ephesians 5:1-14 (Part 1) - Be Imitators of God

Discussion Questions

  1. What is something God has been teaching you through your Bible reading this week? 
     
  2. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  3. Read Ephesians 5:1-2. How do we imitate God as we walk in love? (See John 10:11 and Philippians 2:4)
     
  4. Read Ephesians 5:3-4. What six sins are we instructed to “put off”? What light does 2 Corinthians 6:16-7:1 shed on this idea of putting off filthiness?
     
  5. Consider Ephesians 5:4 along with Matthew 12:33-37. Why is it so crucial to be holy even in our speech? (See also James 3:1-12)
     
  6. Read Ephesians 5:5-14. When you consider the contrast between light and darkness in this passage, ask yourself whether there are certain areas of your life – your thought processes, your attitudes, your social media habits – that are living in darkness or perhaps living in a “gray” zone. Are there changes you need to make in your life, based on Paul’s admonition to live in the light? How can your community group help you make these changes?

Matthew 1:18-25 - God With Us: The Enduring Promise of God's Presence

Family Christmas Quiz

[See if you or your family can answer these Christmas questions, and then use the Scripture references to look up the answers and see if you were right!]

  1.  Who told Joseph to travel to Bethlehem? (Luke 2:1-4) 
     
  2. Where and when did the wise men meet Jesus? (Matthew 2:1, 8-12, 16)
     
  3. How many angels spoke to the shepherds? (Luke 2:8-14)
     
  4. This devout man was told by the Holy Spirit that he would not die until he had seen the Christ. (Luke 2:25-32)
     
  5. What are the names of the relatives Mary stayed with for 3 months after the angel’s announcement? (Luke 1:35-40)
     
  6. If Jesus was born in Bethlehem, why is He called “Jesus of Nazareth”? (Matthew 2:13-23)
     
  7. Can you list all 8 occurrences of angels and/or dreams in the Christmas story? (Matthew 1:18-2:23 and Luke 1:8-2:20)

Ephesians 4:25-32 - The Practical Pursuit of Holiness

Discussion Questions

  1. What is something God has been teaching you through your Bible reading this week? 
     
  2. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  3. Read Ephesians 4:25-27. How might this passage, impact the way you interact with other when you are angry? According to verse 27, what is really at stake when believers are angry with one another? How does this affect the value you place on unity within the body of Christ?
     
  4. Read Ephesians 4:28-30. What criteria are given for speech? What are some ways in which a believer’s speech could grieve the Holy Spirit?
     
  5. Read Ephesians 4:31-32. What contrasts can be drawn between the things listed in verse 31 and the things listed in verse 32? According to verse 32, what is the motivation and the source of our ability to do these things?
     
  6. Other than the five specific areas of the Christian life addressed in this passage, what are some other areas in which you need to continually apply the “put off” and “put on” pattern of Ephesians 4?  What Scripture passages do you use to “renew” your mind and guide you in that process?

Ephesians 4:17-24 - Walk in Holiness

Discussion Questions

  1. What is something God has been teaching you through your Bible reading this week? 
     
  2. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  3. Read Ephesians 4:17-24. Compare the differences between the old self and the new self. How does Galatians 5:16-26 help us to apply Ephesians 4:17-24?
     
  4. What causes the differences between the old self (futile way of the Gentiles) and the righteous way of the new self? (Compare Ephesians 4:18 with Ephesians 4:20-21.)
     
  5. When you consider the ignorance and hardness of heart that alienates from God (v18) and the difference that being taught the truth of Christ makes (verses 20-21) why is it important to be discerning in the things you allow to influence your life? What are some examples of being discerning in regards to the way you spend your time, the people you hang out with, the music you listen to, movies you watch, etc.?
     
  6. Are there traces of the “old self” that you still deal with in your own life? How does the reminder of the truth of Christ encourage you? What are ways your community group can help you in the process of renewing your mind?

Jude 1:17-25 - Keep Yourselves in the Love of The God Who Keeps You: A Lesson in Christian Perseverance

Discussion Questions

  1. What is something God has been teaching you through your Bible reading this week? 
     
  2. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  3. Read Jude 1:17-20. Jude calls believers to remember the predictions of the apostles. Why is it important for us to remember the truths of Scripture when we consider everything going on in our world?
     
  4. Based on verses 18-19, what are characteristics of the ungodly?
     
  5. Read Jude 1:20-21. According to these verses, how are believers to be different than the ungodly described in the previous verses?
     
  6. Read Jude 1:22-23. We see in verse 21 that we are shown mercy by Jesus Christ. Then, verses 22-23 remind us twice to have mercy on others. What are some practical examples of ways you can show mercy to other believers. What are some practical examples of ways you can show mercy to non-believers? Do you have an example of a time when a believer showed you mercy?
     
  7. Read Jude 1:24-25. What characteristics of God are mentioned in verse 25. How does this reminder of God’s character encourage your own spiritual perseverance in light of verse 24? (See also Philippians 1:6)

Jude 1:1-16 - Contend for the Faith!: An Appeal for Christian Discernment

Discussion Questions

  1. 1. What is something God has been teaching you through your Bible reading this week? 
     
  2. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  3. How would you discern that the following unbiblical phrases are false, based on Jude and other passages in scripture?
     
    1. “God wants me to be happy, therefore he’s OK with my sin. He is a God fo Grace, after all” 
       
    2. “It is so old fashioned to say I have to get married before moving in with the person I love.” 
       
    3. “God told me that I should quit my job and join the circus, and I won’t listen to any godly counsel from anyone else because I’m totally convinced God told me to do this.”
       
    4. “How I live out my Christian beliefs is between me and God, so whether or not you think I’m sinning is none of your business.”
       
    5. “Jesus visited me in a dream, revealed new truth to me, and gave me a personal tour of heaven. Buy my book to discover these new truths for yourself and find out what heaven is like!”
       
    6. “Jesus is so loving, he couldn’t possibly send people to hell. I’m sure eventually God saves everyone–maybe even after they die.”

Ephesians 4:1-16 - Unity in Christ

Discussion Questions

  1. What is something God has been teaching you through your Bible reading this week? 
     
  2. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  3. Read Ephesians 4:1-16. What is the calling you’ve been called to in verse 1? Are you walking (living your life) according to the truths of Ephesians chapters 1-3? What are some areas in your life that might need to change to better match the truths in Ephesians?
     
  4. Read Jesus’ prayer for all believers in John 17:20-26. Considering that passage as well as Ephesians 4:1-6, why is unity among believers so important? 
     
  5. What is the purpose for spiritual gifts mentioned in verses 12 and 13? What are some ways you can use your particular gifts for this purpose? 
     
  6. What does it mean to be “tossed to and fro by the waves...” in verse 14? What are some examples of the things warned against in verse 14?
     
  7. How do members of the body of Christ guard against the warning in verse 14? (See verses 15-16).

Ephesians 3:14-21 - Strength in Your Inner Being

Discussion Questions

  1. What is something God has been teaching you through your Bible reading this week? 
     
  2. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  3. Read Ephesians 3:14-21. The reason Paul gives for his prayer is found in the things God has done at the end of chapter 2. What has God been doing in your life that compels you to pray? What things has Christ done that give us reason to pray?
     
  4. How can you use Paul’s prayer for a model as you pray for God to work in your own life and in the lives of others?
     
  5. What is the significance of the phrase “with all the saints” in verse 18? Why is it important to understand God’s love in the context of our relationships with fellow believers?
     
  6. Consider the way Paul concludes his prayer in verses 20 and 21. How should these verses inform the way that we pray and the kinds of things we pray about? How do you think the purpose seen in verse 21 affects the confidence seen in verse 20?

Ephesians 3:1-13 - The Mystery of God Revealed

Discussion Questions

  1. What is something God has been teaching you through your Bible reading this week? 
     
  2. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  3. Read Ephesians 3:1–7. Paul says he is a prisoner of Christ on behalf of you Gentiles. Have you considered the fact that real people in the Bible and throughout history have been imprisoned, tortured, and killed so that you might know the Gospel? How does this reality impact your own faith? How does it impact your interactions with non-believers?
     
  4. Read Ephesians 3:8-13. Verse 8 refers to the gospel of Christ as unsearchable riches. What things in your life do you consider your riches? Are there things that compete with the gospel for your attention or affection? What are practical steps you can take to remind yourself of the unsearchable riches of Christ?
     
  5. How does Ephesians 3:10 impact your view of the church? Considering this text as well as Hebrews 10:23-25, why is it important to be committed to meeting regularly with the local assembly of believers?
     
  6. Because we have been given boldness and confident access to God through our faith in Christ Jesus, take time to pray together as a group for those who are suffering for the sake of the gospel.

Ephesians 2:11-22 - God's New Humanity

Discussion Questions

  1. What is something God has been teaching you through your Bible reading this week? 
     
  2. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  3. Read Ephesians 2:11-12. What are the readers called to remember in verse 12? Why does Paul want us to remember these? 
     
  4. Read Ephesians 2:13-18. What difference does Christ’s work make when compared with verses 11-12? 
     
  5. What impact should the truths of verses 13-15 have on the way you view and respond to cultural distrust, racism, nationalism, missions, and hospitality?
     
  6. Is there any group of ethnic people you are tempted to be racist or hostile towards in your thoughts, words, attitudes, or actions? How does a proper understanding of Christ’s death and the image of God in people help guard against such temptation? (See also Genesis 1:27, Acts 17:27, Revelation 5:9.)
     
  7. Read Ephesians 2:19-22. How does this passage inform your understanding of the church? How can the church be a testimony to the world of the unity that Christ brings?

3 John - In a Manner Worthy of God: Supporting Truth to the Edges of the World

Discussion Questions

  1. What is something God has been teaching you through your Bible reading this week? 
     
  2. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  3. Read 3 John. Compare the instructions in 3 John 5-8 with that of 2 John 7-11. Based on these two passages, what responsibilites do we have in regards to partnering with others for the gospel?
     
  4. What evidences of sinful pride do we see in the example of Diotrephes in 3 John 9-10? Consider each of Diotrephes’ actions. How would doing the inverse of these actions cultivate attitudes of humility and build unity in the church? 
     
  5. How are 3 John 9-10 and 13-14 good examples to imitate in admonishing or encouraging other believers? (See also Matt. 18:15)
     
  6. What are ways that you and/or your community group can be more involved in supporting gospel workers?

2 John - True Love is "Truth Love"

Discussion Questions

  1. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  2. Read 2 John. What does it mean to walk in the truth (v4) and walk according to his commandments (v5)? (See James 1:22-25). Do you rejoice when you see others walking in the truth? How does your walk demonstrate your love for God?
     
  3. What kinds of false teachers/deceivers do we face today? How can we be on-guard against them? What roles do spritual disciplines, theology, and doctrine play in this?
     
  4. What are some ways of the ways that you have seen false teachers trying to deceive people?
     
  5. What implications do verses 10-11 have regarding church governance, church membership, and restorative church discipline? 
     
  6. What implications does John’s example in verse 12 have for us in our mass-communication, technology-driven culture?

Ephesians 2:1-10 - You Were Dead... But GOD

Discussion Questions

  1. What is one truth or “take-away” from the sermon that you found particularly challenging/convicting/helpful?
     
  2. Read Eph. 2:1-3. What does it mean to be “dead in trespasses and sins”? (See Romans 1:18-23, 3:10-18, Eph. 4:18-19.)
     
  3. Read Eph. 2:4-10. How does being alive in Christ contrast with the deadness of verses 1-3? (See Galatians 5:13-26)
     
  4. How are you tempted to fall back into the Galatians 5:19-21 way of life? Spend some time in prayer asking God to show you any sinful way in your life and confess that sin to God. Ask God to grow you in the evidences of life found in Galatians 5:22-24. 
     
  5. What role do works play in Eph. 2:8-10? How does this impact the way you view your own spiritual walk? How does it affect the way you view yourself in relation to unbelievers or other believers?
     
  6. What was your understanding of the Gospel before you were saved? How has your understanding of the Gospel changed since then? How would you use this passage to help a non-Christian understand the Gospel?