Next Steps in Healthy Relationships, Jan. 26-Feb.1

Outline

 

Take off lying – put on truth

Because we are members together

Take off bad anger – put on good anger

So we don’t give the devil an opportunity

Take off stealing – put on useful work

So we can share with those in need

Take off harmful words – put on helpful talk

So we can build each other up
So we don’t upset the Holy Spirit

Take off bitter rage – put on compassion

Because in Christ God forgave you

 

Group Discussion Questions

  1. Where do you see yourself on the path to spiritual maturity in Christ? How would you describe where you are right now?
  2. Paul gives five important steps to build healthy relationships – each exhortation has a negative command and a positive command followed by a reason or motivation. In verse 25, identify each one, the negative command, the positive command and the reason. How do we tend to lie? Why is speaking truth so important? Where do you need to work on this?
  3. In verses 26-27, what are we do to and not to do and why? What are some differences between healthy and sinful anger? How is the devil related to anger?
  4. In verse 28, what should we stop doing? Start doing? Why? How do people steal at home? In the workplace? At church? What reason is given for doing useful work?
  5. In verse 29, what are we to avoid? To pursue? Why? What are some kinds of unwholesome speech? How is it common in homes? At work? At church? How could we practically build up others for their benefit with our words?
  6. In verse 30, what is the connection of unwholesome speech to the Holy Spirit? What do you think this means?
  7. In verses 31-32, what are we to get rid of? And what are we to do? What is our standard and model?
  8. How has God in Christ forgiven us?
  9. Why is forgiveness hard for you? Who do you need to forgive (don’t use names)?

 

Family Discussion Questions

  1. What is a neighbor? What kind of neighbor is Paul talking about in Ephesians 4:25 (NIV) (Ephesians 1:1 [NIV])?
  2. Do you find it hard to tell a friend or family member that something they’re doing upsets you? Why is that?
  3. What does Paul say we must do to our Christian brothers and sisters (4:25)?
  4. What would you do if a part of your body wasn’t working properly? What would happen if you didn’t get it fixed? How is this like the Christian “body” of believers?
  5. Do you ever get angry with your family members or friends? What are some of the things they do that make you upset? What are some of the things YOU do to make others upset? What does Paul tell us not to do when we get angry? What can this “sin” look like?
  6. What can happen if we don’t discuss the things that are upsetting us? How can the devil take advantage of us (4:27) when we don’t talk to those who have wronged or hurt us?
  7. What is “unwholesome talk”? What happens to our relationships when we’re not careful with what we say (James 3:9-10 [NIV])? What word in Ephesians 4:30 (NIV) does Paul use to describe how unwholesome talk makes God feel?
  8. Do you sin? How has God dealt with you in your sin? What should you do to those who sin against you (Matthew 6:12-15 [NIV])? ACTION: Memorize the Lord’s Prayer: Matthew 6:9-13 (NIV)

 

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