Coastline Bible Church is doing an eight-week sermon series called: "Defined by Joy." The Apostle Paul helped plant the church in Philippi (see Acts 16) but never forget about them. They played a key role in supporting him as God called him to plant other churches. From this series we want to learn how to have our lives defined by joy and not circumstances. Paul modeled this well to the early church. For this series I volunteered to write the small group questions that go along with each sermon. It seemed like a waste to leave them in a file on my computer and not share them with everyone.
Small Group Questions | Joy in hardship | Philippians 1:12-30
As we study the book of Philippians we must remember that Paul is writing this letter from a Roman jail cell. Paul was wrongly arrested in the Temple in Jerusalem. Some Jews thought that Paul had brought a Gentile into the Temple Court and this caused a commotion. Paul was arrested and beaten. He was kept in chains because the Jews were looking for a way to kill him. Paul was ultimately taken to Rome where he wrote this letter to the church in Philippi. All day long He was chained to a Roman guard. Paul learned that his suffering gave him an opportunity to glorify God. Through all of this, Paul found joy in his hardship.
1) Neal shared a story about David McIntyre and his time on a show called Alone. On the show David spoke about how suffering shapes us in to the people we are today. Share a time when you suffered and how it shaped your life.
2) Read Philippians 1:12-14. Paul found a boldness to share his faith while being locked up in Rome. What motivates you to share your faith? On the other side, what keeps you from sharing your faith? (see 2 Timothy 4:5 about sharing your faith).
3) Paul was jailed in a private house while being chained to a Roman guard all day long. His chains gave him a boldness to proclaim the Gospel message. What do you feel chained to right now and how can you find boldness to share the gospel?
4) Paul encourages the church to keep Christ first and to keep proclaiming the Gospel no matter the situation (read Philippians 1:15-18). Why is Satan happy when he sees conflict arise in the church?
5) Paul had sufficient courage to face the task at hand (read Philippians 1:18b-21). Courage is a quality we see in many of our heroes of the faith. Read Daniel 1 and talk about how both these men had courage in their unique setting.
6) Read Philippians 1:22-26. Paul longed to be with the church and to be with the Lord. He knew it was better for him to stay. Who has God placed in your circle of influence that you can encourage with the love of God this week?
7) At the end of chapter one we learn about conducting ourselves in a manner worthy of the Gospel (read Philippians 1:27-30). Share one area that you think you excel in conducting yourself in a worthy manner and one area you’d like help to grow in.
Close your time in prayer by praying for: Family to Family ministry.
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