Christmas Series Sermon Study: Session 10 (Fall 2023)

Session 10 – Small Group Study Guide

Download: PDF | Download: Word Doc

Review of Sermon Notes

Key Idea: Six marks of Christian service

  • Gospel-fueled (v. 1a)
    • The gospel frees us from guilt in serving
    • The gospel frees us from fear in serving
  • Consuming (v. 1b)
  • Humble (vv. 2-3)
  • Communal (vv. 4-5)
  • Strategic (vv. 6-7a)
    Three categories of gifting:
    • Talents
    • Treasure
    • Time
  • Sincere (vv. 7b-8)

Word: How this truth should be understood

  1. Read Romans 12:1. Notice the word “therefore,” and its importance. Paul grounds his command for us to serve with the first 11 chapters of Romans through the “therefore.” According to Paul and this text, why do we serve God? What are some of the “mercies of God” that come to mind from Romans 1-11?
  2. Notice that in Romans 12:1, Paul tells us that the nature of our serving is that we are to be “a living sacrifice” and that is our spiritual worship (some translations say “spiritual/reasonable service”). It has the idea of OT sacrifices to God in mind. But it’s also different in that we are living sacrifices. What does this tell you about your life and how God views it?
  3. At the end of our text, Paul tells us to serve “with cheerfulness.” As you go through the text, how does each of the six elements that Paul talks about (as summarized in Pastor David’s outline) fuel cheerful service? 

Worship: How this truth affects your heart

  1. In the beginning of the sermon, Pastor David mentioned that there’s a wide-range of serving that exists in the life of our church: Some of us serve in formal, visible ways, and others serve in informal, ways that might not be seen; some of us serve a bit, some of us don’t serve at all. But the hope is that we serve in better ways. Of the six marks of Christian service that Pastor David mentioned, what is one way you can thoughtfully grow in your service and how do you think that might help you grow in serving?
  2. In our text we see how in serving, we are tempted to think more highly of ourselves when we serve. In what ways do you see this attitude creep into your own heart when you serve whether it’s through comparison or anything else? How does the gospel – the fact that we were saved “by the mercies of God (v. 1),” – guard you from that lie?
  3. As you think about serving, one of the fears is that we might lose that cheerfulness. What tends to rob you of that cheerfulness when you serve? Additionally, what fuels that cheerfulness?

Work: How this truth works out in your life

  1. As “members one of another” (v. 5), we are reminded that we serve best when we know each other. Who is one person that you can get to know better so that you can better serve and love them? Take time to pray that God would move your heart toward them, and for opportunities to spend time with each other!
  2. One of the things that we’re reminded of in v. 6 is that we are all given various gifts according to the grace God has given us. We are encouraged to take stock of our lives and consider how we might use those gifts strategically. Think of it in these three ways: (1) Talents – your abilities, skills, personality, etc.; (2) Treasure – your belongings and possessions; (3) Time – your time throughout the week and days in your life. Take time to think about those three areas of your life and write those things down and at the end, write down ways that you might use your gifts to serve – whether formally or informally.
    ***See study guide link for chart
  3. If you were able to make your way through the ministry fair, what is one area of ministry that you can see yourself being involved in? Share with your small group why that area of ministry appeals to you, and what your next steps will be (whether it’s praying for it, reaching out to the ministry leader, etc.).

Sharing and Prayer

  1. As you think about this season and our study in Galatians, what is one area in which you’d like to grow in living out your faith? Write this down and prepare to follow-up and track God’s work in our future sessions!
  2. What are some ways that you’d like to apply what you just learned to that one area you’d like to grow in living out your faith?
  3. Share other prayer requests.