Be The Church week 7
2 Corinthians Ch 6
Fall Festival - October 16th (Bring items in this week if possible)
Major Points and Discussion Questions
1… We are God’s Co-Workers! (Reading vs 1-2)
To be a Christians is to be a Co-worker in the Gospel! Remember God’s Commission for all believers is the commission to Go Make Disciples of All nations! He wants to use you where you live where you work and where you play to make Disciples.
- Do you see yourself as Christ's Co-worker? How does this identity change your purpose in life?
- Have you ever been discipled by anyone in your life? What does it look like for you personally to make disciples?
2… Love others Sacrificially (Reading vs 3-13)
Pauls's Love and ministry to the Corinthians is an incredible example of us! He shows us a picture of Sacrificial love! Biblical love is sacrificial! We Learn this from Jesus! It is in the Gospel that we learn to love others in a sacrificial unconditional way. When we see God’s Love for us, we Love God, and when we love God, we Love others more than we love ourselves!
Sacrificial love is
- Rooted in the Gospel
- Involves “opening our hearts wide” to others!
- Perseveres through all things
- How does the Gospel encourage us and yet at the same time challenge us when it comes to loving others?
- How does worldly love differ from biblical love?
- What’s your next step in loving others sacrificially?
3… Pursue Holiness (Reading vs 6:14-7:1)
We see that God wants us to be in the world but not be of the world! The Church is to be a light in the world and in order to be a light in the world it has to be different from the world. A Church that Looks like the world and acts like the world has nothing left to offer the world. It’s not ok to synchronize the Gospel! It’s not ok to compromise the Gospel for the sake of fitting it. When we compromise the Gospel we lose the Gospel.
- Stay close to Jesus
- Value God's purpose for your life! (Ambassadors)
- Resist the urge to Compromise
- What is the secret to Pursuing Holiness?
- How does owning the mission of an ambassador keep you from compromising the Gospel?
- When you look into your life personally… is there any way that you might be compromising the Gospel? What are some practical ways that you see the Gospel compromised in our day?
(For Further Study)
Be The Church W7 - 2 Cor 6:1-7:1
1.. We are God’s Coworkers vs 1-2
6 As God’s co-workers we urge you not to receive God’s grace in vain. 2 For he says, “In the time of my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you.” I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation
Have you ever thought about the fact that God sees you as a coworker?
What does it mean to receive God’s Grace in Vain?
- To receive God’s grace and not spread it to others!
- To let it stop with you.
We are supposed to be conduits of God’s Grace. Ambassadors! Ministers! God making His appeal through us!
Practical Question: How do we live as God's Co-Workers?
A.. Known the Mission (Matt 28:18-20)
18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
B.. Accept the Responsibility (New Covenant…” Now is the time”)
To Follow Jesus is to fish for men! If I’m not fishing… I'm not following!
C.. Embrace the Lifestyle
Making disciples is not just something we do, it’s who we are!
Personal Question: Have you embraced this lifestyle? What is hindering you?
For some it’s SIN - Are you still living for yourself?
For some it’s Distractions - Are you caught up in civilian affairs?
For some it’s Lies: You think Abundant life is found elsewhere. Maybe you start to believe the lie that God can't use you.
2.. Love others sacrificially vs 3-13
3 We put no stumbling block in anyone’s path, so that our ministry will not be discredited. 4 Rather, as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way: in great endurance; in troubles, hardships and distresses; 5 in beatings, imprisonments and riots; in hard work, sleepless nights and hunger; 6 in purity, understanding, patience and kindness; in the Holy Spirit and in sincere love; 7 in truthful speech and in the power of God; with weapons of righteousness in the right hand and in the left; 8 through glory and dishonor, bad report and good report; genuine, yet regarded as impostors; 9 known, yet regarded as unknown; dying, and yet we live on; beaten, and yet not killed; 10 sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; poor, yet making many rich; having nothing, and yet possessing everything.
11 We have spoken freely to you, Corinthians, and opened wide our hearts to you. 12 We are not withholding our affection from you, but you are withholding yours from us. 13 As a fair exchange—I speak as to my children—open wide your hearts also.
Write this down! The Greatest stumbling block to my personal ministry is a lack of genuine Love for others! When you truly Love God and Love others, effective ministry naturally overflows!
Pails Love and ministry to the Corinthians is an incredible example for us!
Let’s learn from Pail!
3 Characteristics of Sacrificial Love
A.. Sacrificial Love is rooted in the gospel
Think about God’s love for us displayed in the Gospel:
John 3:16 - Romans 5:8 - 2 Corinthians 5:21
It’s deep. It’s generous. It’s not passive. It’s active. It’s selfless. It acted for my good. It’s overcoming. It moved heaven to earth to make a way for me! It’s sacrificial. He literally sacrificed everything. His only Son. His Best.
Truth! When we experience the Gospel we become like the Gospel.
Sacrificial love is who God is. It’s How God loves us. And when we love people the same way (The Gospel way), it tangibly displays the love of God to them.
The Bottom line is this. In order for us to love others this way we must be personally rooted in the gospel.
B.. Sacrificial Love Involves “opening our hearts wide” to others!
It’s relational. It’s transparent. It’s honest. It’s vulnerable. It’s literally opening up our lives to people. (All of it - Good, Bad, Ugly) The most effective ministry is when you open your hearts wide to people and invite them in to see the real you!
Doing Life with people!
This type of love breaks down walls! If there is one characteristic that we want for our Church it would be…. REAL!
One commentator said it this way…“Has anyone ever truly opened their heart
to you? It is a rare and moving occasion when the facades fall away and
someone shares their deepest self in a vulnerable and sincere way. I
experienced one of those precious moments when a dear friend revealed her
struggles to me. She had given me glimpses of what was going on prior to that
day, but I couldn’t fathom the depth and gravity of the situation. As we talked, I
felt my own heart begin to soften. I was able to love her in a new way and felt
an inexplicable joy of authenticity and connection.”
This is how Paul described his r-ship with the Corinthians.
He loved them. He went thru a lot for them. He sacrificed a lot for them.
He would literally do anything to see them reconciled to God.
This is what sacrificial love is all about. It’s a father/son type of love.
C.. Sacrificial Love perseveres through all things.
Listen to this list of Paul’s struggles!
Troubles, Hardships, Distress, Beatings, Imprisonment, Riots, Hard work, Sleepless nights, Hunger, Spiritual warfare, and Personal hurt.
It reminds me of Paul’s definition of Love in 1 Corinthians 13
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.
Question: Is your life characterized by sacrificial love for others?
(where you work, where you Live, where you Play)
Do people experience the sacrificial love of Christ through you?
3.. Pursue Holiness. 6:14-7:1
The Message Translations says it like this!
Don’t become partners with those who reject God. How can you make a partnership out of right and wrong? That’s not partnership; that’s war. Is light best friends with dark? Does Christ go strolling with the Devil? Do trust and mistrust hold hands? Who would think of setting up pagan idols in God’s holy Temple? But that is exactly what we are, each of us a temple in whom God lives…..
7:1 With promises like this, dear friends, let’s make a clean break with everything that defiles or distracts us, both within and without. Let’s make our entire lives fit and holy temples for the worship of God.
This is some serious Language!
There was a lot of conformity going on in the church of Corinth. The Culture was influencing the church.
Paul is afraid that the Church will fall into sin.
We see this later in Chapter 12
(Sexual sin, impurity, debauchery, discord, jealousy, slander, gossip, selfish ambition, arrogance) These Characteristics may be normal in the world but they shouldn’t be normal for the Church!
The Main Question:
How do we live in the world but not be of the world?
A.. We Stay Close to Jesus
John 15:5 Abide in Christ! Make our Home in Him!
The Closer we walk with Jesus the more we become like Him!
Spend time with Him: God’s Word, Prayer, Community, Next Steps .
Godly Relationships are important
We are not created to do life alone. Community is important! Not only Community but Godly Community! Who we yoke ourselves with matters! (Marriage, friendships etc)
B.. We Value God's Purpose for our lives
God wants to use you! Period! When we start to Value God's purpose for our lives and start walling in that purpose we don’t get caught up living like the world because were more focused on making an impact in it.
C.. We Resist the Urge to Compromise
We FIGHT! Our flesh loves the world. We have to daily deny self. We cannot be God’s light in the world if we compromise with the world.
Remember: A Church that looks like the world has nothing left to offer it!