Session 6 – Small Group Study Guide
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Word: How this truth should be understood
- This passage begins in verse 11 with the word, “Therefore.” How is this passage tied to the previous verses and why is this important?
- Read v. 13. What Paul is saying is that he doesn’t mind if people think he is crazy (“besides ourselves”) for living for and expending his life for Christ the way that he has been. Why was Paul okay with this?
- In verse 14, Paul explains that reason why he lives the way he lives is because “the love of Christ controls us.” Paul could have referred to anything – His holiness, His law, His judgment, etc. But he specifically chose to speak of Christ’s love. Why do you think this is significant?
Worship: How this truth affects your heart
- In our study of the text, we saw how the fear of the Lord should move us toward Him rather than away from Him. For Paul, it meant faithfully persuading others and even a willingness to suffer for Him. But often times we move away from Him because we are eclipsed by other fears instead. What is one area of fear in your life – whether it’s fear of persecution, fear of sacrifice, etc. – and how does that move you away from God? Alternatively, how might that area of your life look different if instead you were more constrained by the fear of the Lord instead?
- In verse 14, Paul directs us to this truth: Jesus’ love is the overarching and defining reality. Jesus calls us to live as ambassadors, because He loves us. In other words, living as an ambassador for Christ is actually good for us – it’s not just something we have to do. As Pastor Kim said, “God doesn’t call us to do these things as duty, but rather because it’s a delight.” So as you think about this idea, how does living faithfully and radically as an ambassador of Christ good for you? What are the benefits that you would reap from this?
Work: How this truth works out in your life
- Practically speaking, fear of the Lord looks like this: Living by acknowledging the greatness of God’s character and God’s claim on our life. During this season we want to intentionally consider the unbelievers in our life. So think about a person in your life that you’re hoping to share the gospel with – what would be the next step in witnessing to them?
- The radicalness of Paul’s life for Christ made an undeniable impact on others. They could not help but notice and even want to know more. Our hope is the same – to have such a radicalness to our lives that has such gravity that it causes others to want to know more about our Christ. Consider these three areas of life: (1) Evangelism; (2) Generosity; and (3) Serving. What steps could you take toward radicalness that impacts those around you?
- Take time to pray that God would help you faithfully take steps toward such radicalness. As you do so, also pray for others to do the same, and to do so as you’re constrained by both the fear of the Lord and the love of Christ.
Sharing and Prayer
- As you think about this season, 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!
- 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?
- Share other prayer requests.