Be The Church week 10
1 Corinthians 9
Important Announcements! CGLM this Sunday at 5:00 at the Church Office.
Choose a couple of your favorite points and questions to discuss from the following. (Don’t use all six points!)
Theme: Finishing well! Paul wants the Corinthians to finish what they started when it comes to their giving toward the Jerusalem Church! They started well! They were excited and passionate about their giving. They set an example for others around them. Paul wanted them to continue and finish strong. When it comes to the Christian life, How do we end well?
1.. Where you begin determines how you end sometimes. Vs 1-5
A bad past doesn’t have to determine your future and a good past doesn’t automatically guarantee that you have a good future. However sometimes how you begin will determine how you end… if you let it define you!
The powerful thing about the Gospel is it redefines us! Christ can redefine and redeem that that once identified you and change your identity in him and use you to glorify Him. Remember to start with the right place in the Gospel! (Jesus’ work and ability) If you start in the wrong place with the gospel, (My effort and ability) You may not finish well. Where you begin matters! (If you begin with your performance then you will end with your performance and the truth is you won’t last long. However, If you begin in God’s love and Grace then His love begins to compel us into Christian living and that gives us affection for christ and perseverance in our lives!
- When it comes to living the Christian life, why is it important that you remember Jesus’ work and your identity in Him?
2.. Don’t reject accountability vs 5
We can be so insecure in christ that we can't receive any correction or accountability. Remember… there is nothing more unloving than watching someone ruin their life while people just sit back and remain quiet. Biblical correction is Loving! Some good ingredients for accountability: Humility, Trust, and An agreed-upon mutual goal (you can't force someone to go somewhere where they don’t want to go.)
- Why do we naturally not like accountability… and why is it important to have in our life?
- Do you have any space in your life for accountability? If so How has it impacted your life for the good?
3.. Be intentional about your harvest vs 6-7
What we sow is what we reap. Paul says if you sow sparingly you will reap sparingly and if you sow generously you will reap generously. Give what you have decided in your hearts. What do you want to reap? Do you want to reap Generously? Then Sow Generously! Be intentional about what you harvest! What do you want to produce? Whatever that is… that's what you need to sow into! You decide. (intentional choice) Paul says Give what you have decided in your heart. It’s one thing to have ‘good intentions” and it's another to be intentional.
- If we are to reap what we sow then based on what you’re sowing what are you going to reap? (This doesn’t necessarily say “what” you will reap… it just says you will reap what you sow. It does show us that if we sow generously into a kingdom work God will not waste our money! whatever we sow into His kingdom we will reap.)
- When it comes to giving would you consider yourself a reluctant giver or a cheerful one?
4.. Remember your purpose and keep grinding vs 8-10
Continue in the purpose that God’s given you. The reason for God’s blessing is for prosperous ministry not just so we can be prosperous! You will reap a harvest! Don’t give up. If you have the courage to step God will give you the strength to take the next step. He Promises that we will reap a harvest for His kingdom. He has given us this so we can have a prosperous ministry and an eternal ministry. Keep going!
GRIT: One of the most necessary characteristics of the Christian life. Sometimes we can think that we are tough. Then we have a humbling experience and realize that we’re not as tough as we like to think we are. GRIT is a manifestation of GRACE! Grace produces Grit! (perseverance) Jesus was Full of Grace and Truth. Perseverance! For the Joy set before Him, He endured the cross. The joy wasn’t the cross but it was the other side of it. A Redeemed creation and a redeemed people! We are gritty when the holy spirit is working in us to accomplish for us and through us what we cant accomplish on our own!
- How have you seen Grace produce Grit (perseverance) in your life?
- How do you respond when adversity comes your way? Are you quick to throw in the towel or are you quick to fix your eyes on Christ and remain faithful?
5.. The Mission must Matter Vs 12-14
Paul tells them to finish what they started! He challenges them to Stay on mission. Complete the Mission! They were giving to an eternal cause that would end up bringing unity between the Jews and the Gentiles. The Corinthians were Mission-focused! Giving to people who were different from them! They show us that the key to finishing well is staying focused on the mission that God has put before us.
- Where would you rate God and His mission in your life compared to everything else? Is the Mission a part of your life? Or is it the thing that your life revolves around?
6.. Christ's Love must compel us Vs 15
If your going to finish well then christ's love must compel us. Right actions with wrong motives is legalism! Romans 12:1-2 says “in View of God’s Mercy!” Out of what He has done for us! This is our Reasonable response!
- How have you seen legalism in your life or the life of the church?
- Why is it necessary that the love of Christ be the motivation for everything in your life?