Life Group Questions from the Sermon on 7/16/17

 

Ice Breaker: Most homes have a welcome mat outside the front door, if you have one, what does your say or look like? Why does your say or look the way it does?

 

Say: Although welcome mats are often used to wipe dirt and mud off our shoes, the worst thing that can come into our homes could be a dirty heart. Hopefully, through today’s discussion, we can clean up our hearts and have homes that have more Godly order than chaos.

 

Rescue People

 

Often people are hurt outside their home, take their hurt home with them, and then inflict hurt on their homes. The cycle is hard to end, but possible to end with the intervention of the Lord and His people.

 

  • What is one way that we can help people have a more positive and Christ-like day?

  • What is one way that we can help people have a more positive and Christ-like experience at home?

  • Take time to pray for ways to influence families and homes for the Lord

 

Show Them What We Do

 

Galatians 5:19–24 19Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, 21envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit.

 

In Galatians 5:19-25, Paul wrote to the Galatians about chaos and order. He started off by talking about 15 works of the flesh that bring chaos into our life. These 15 works can be divided into four different categories:

 

  1. Immorality (sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality)

 

Immorality may not be the worse thing in this list that can destroy a home, but immorality is often the most graphic. It’s shockingly painful to see a family fall apart due to immorality. Instead of being dedicated to our family and home, immorality rewires our brain to be dedicated to other people and other things.

 

  • What leads to immorality, and how can immorality be avoided?

  • When are people the most likely to fall into immorality? Why?

 

  1. Idolatry (idolatry, sorcery/witchcraft)

 

Idols come in a lot of forms. Not only that, but idols make promises to gratify us; yet, idols ironically lay us on an altar of sacrifice and pain that never truly brings us the fulfillment the idol promised. When we are willing to worship idols like success, money, fame, etc., we will sacrifice our family and our home on the idol’s altar. ‘Sorcery,’ coming from the Greek word, pharmacia, talks about drug abuse. Drug abuse sacrifices the same things as idolatry to hopefully achieve a ‘high’ promised by the drug.

 

  • How does worshipping an idol negatively impact a home?

  • How does drug abuse negatively impact a home?

 

  1. Ill Will (enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy)

 

Homes should be safe spaces, not war zones. Unfortunately, more homes resemble war zones because ill will is rampant. When hurts have not been dealt with and they continue to linger on, Satan grabs foot and hand holds to crawl all over someone’s life. What could be a simple statement, question, or joke, suddenly becomes the spark to ignite a huge fight.

 

  • Why do you think Paul used eight words to describe ill will?

  • If we say we love God, that God’s love is in us, but we have ill will toward others, are we truly full of God’s love? Why or why not?

 

  1. Immoderation (drunkenness, orgies, and things like these)

 

Not being able to control ourselves is tough. Immoderation can’t say ‘no’ to anything. Immoderation never has enough, and it’s always seeking the next drink, party, drug, sexual encounter, etc.

 

  • What are signs someone can’t control themselves?

  • What are some possible chaotic behaviors that are ‘things like these’?

 

In the same way that Genesis 1 started with chaos, Paul then moved on to talk about how life can be when God is in the center of our lives and begins to create order. The problem with the things in the works of the flesh are that they are “I” focused. Paul then moved on to talk about nine works of the Spirit in our life that bring the fruit of the Spirit in three different areas:

 

  1. Godly Living (love, joy, peace)

 

The only way to have love, joy, and peace is to live for God. Living for God is the key that unlocks the door to God’s love, joy, and peace. Godly living puts faith at the core of who we are, and because of our faith, we live for God.

 

  • What are some ways to live for God?

  • Why can we not find love, joy, and peace, without living for God?

 

  1. Others Before Ourselves (patience, kindness, goodness)

 

Just like the works of the flesh, if we put “I” in front of everyone else, we hinder the work of the Spirit in our lives. Truly, there’s nothing more like God than to put others before ourselves. It’s hard sometimes to put others before ourselves because although every person bears the image of God, not everyone acts like it! Regardless, we should put others before ourselves because Jesus put us, sinners who separated ourselves from Him for all eternity, before Himself.

 

  • What would it look like for us to put others before ourselves? Examples?

  • How do patience, kindness, and goodness, help us put others before ourselves?

  • What are some ways the Spirit leads us to serve others?

 

  1. Directional Living (faithfulness, gentleness, self-control)

 

When life pulls us in multiple directions, we need to make sure we have directional living. Directional living keeps us focused on the prize: Christ. The greatest evidence of directional living is to remain faithful when our life feels like it’s falling apart, to be gentle with the world is harsh, and to have self-control when the works of the flesh want to pull us into chaos.

 

  • Ask someone to read Proverbs 3:5-6 and then ask, “What are the key things that lead to God making our paths straight?”

  • Many people want to make a big splash, but just like a big splash, the effects are often short lived. We need to make a directional, deep impact into the world. How can faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control help us make a deep impact on the world for Christ?

  • Why do we want to give up when things get tough?

 

Send Them Out to do What We Do

 

When “I” is at the center of our lives, chaos rules, but when God is at the center of our lives, He brings order into our lives. This week, sit down in your home and write out the issues your home has, and then investigate to see what is at the root of the issue. Hint: this is not a blame game, doing this will help you see if God is at the center of your heart and home, or if your heart has “I” at the center.