The Front Porch
2 CORINTHIANS 5:11-21
In 2 Corinthians 5:14-15, we hear that we, the church, are compelled by Christ’s love, because we are convinced that Jesus died for all, that they may live for him, “who died and was raised again.”
What does it look life for a person and a community to live compelled by Jesus’ love? How might others know that about them?
What does it mean to love someone from a worldly point of view? How does Christian love operate differently than worldly love?
Paul identifies the church as “Christ’s ambassadors” or emissaries, with this appeal: “We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.” How might the church be equipped to be reconciling ambassadors? What does the church need in order to respond to this commission?
1 CORINTHIANS 12:12-31
Why do you think we might be tempted to appreciate, notice, and commend the work of some parts of the Christian body and not others?
What is the danger in the church valuing or appreciating one part of its body over another? How does underappreciating a body part harm the church?
What might it look like if each person in our church were operating in the ways they are called, gifted, and equipped? How might the Lord make that happen?
In what ways might the Holy Spirit be inviting you to practical acts of love in our church?
The Family Room & Kitchen
When you think of genuinely belonging in a community or family, what comes to mind? What things might lead you to say “I belong here?”
What are some of your favorite memories from your childhood? How have good memories like these shaped who you are now?
In Ephesians 3:17 we hear Paul describing the church as “being rooted and established in love.”
In what ways has Jesus rooted and established our church in love?
How might we continue our legacy of practicing love for one another? Who might the Holy Spirit be inviting you to love, and how?
2 TIMOTHY 3:14-17
2 Timothy 3:14 says “Continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it.” How does our relationship with others influence our approach to learning? How does our relationship with Jesus influence our approach to learning?
Ephesians 2:20 tells us that we are building our church community together on the foundation of those saints in the Lord who have gone before us, particularly the apostles and prophets. Who are the people who have laid the foundation of your faith? Which parts of church-life have been foundational?
How might that word from Ephesians influence our approach to Christian discipling and instruction? How might that word influence our approach to those who come after us, who are being “built” into the house of God on our shoulders?
In Ephesians 2 the church is described as a household; the whole of which is unified to be the Lord’s holy temple—with Christ as the cornerstone. A cornerstone is the first stone laid in a building, preceding all other stones that will go into the building. It also geographically orients the direction of the building, even before it is built.
In what ways has Jesus been the cornerstone for our church? How have you seen the church follow and be directed by Christ?
In what ways has Jesus joined together – unified – the church?
What might be at risk if we – the church – were not unified, stabilized, and directed by Christ the Cornerstone?