Tag Archives: ephesians 4:16
Week 4 – Fasten the Zipper
CARING FOR UNITY
- Jesus Prays for Unity
- Unity points to Jesus
1 Corinthians 1:10 – I appeal to you, brothers, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment. [ESV]
- Agree in what you say / No division
- Same understanding – Same conviction
Aim for Unity
- Stay Connected to the Vine
- Jesus is the Vine. We are the branches.
- Ephesians 4:16 – from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love. [ESV]
- Knit together. Properly working as each other individually.
- One mind. One purpose.
- 1 Peter 3:8 – Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind. [ESV]
- Live your gifts
- Romans 12:4-5 – For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function, so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. [ESV]
- All about Jesus
- Don’t let pride get in the way.
- Romans 12:16 – Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight. [ESV]
Psalm 133:1 – Behold, how good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell in unity! [ESV]
1) Read Romans 12:4-5 and Ephesians 4:15-16. Paul writes to the Ephesians about walking in unity. What did Paul say was important for us to do as followers of Christ in the Ephesians passage? Why do you think this action is important? What would be the result(s) of doing this? How do we ensure we are doing our own part? How do we encourage others to do the same?
2) Read Romans 12:16 and 1 Peter 3:8. These passages speak about the unity—one mind, one purpose—and the humility we should live by so we may live in harmony. How can we live with one mind, one purpose? How do we humble ourselves?
Handle with Care is a 6-week series focused on studying God’s Word and responding with care. The six weeks of messages may sound like instructions for laundry care — but you will soon find Handle with Care beckons you to examine within, to gauge how you truly love God and love others, and to grow inward and outward. Caring starts with the heart and pours out into the community.
- Week 1 – Stain Removal – Caring for God’s glory
- Week 2 – Do Not Bleach – Caring for Truth
- Week 3 – Add Fabric Softener – Caring like Barnabas
- Week 4 – Fasten the Zipper – Caring for Unity
- Week 5 – Empty Pockets – Caring for Treasures
- Week 6 – Iron Low Heat – Caring without Complacency
Week 1 – Leadership 101
ALONE WITH GOD
John 15:5 – I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in Me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing. [ESV]
TOGETHER WITH OTHERS
Luke 22:25-26 – Jesus told them, “In this world the kings and great men lord it over their people, yet they are called ‘friends of the people.’ But among you it will be different. Those who are the greatest among you should take the lowest rank, and the leader should be like a servant. Who is more important, the one who sits at the table or the one who serves? The one who sits at the table, of course. But not here! For I am among you as one who serves. [NLT]
Philippians 2:3-4 – Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. [ESV]
Psalm 90:12 – Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom. [NIV]
Breakout Session Questions:
1) Read Mark 1:35, Luke 5:16, and Matthew 14:23. What do these passages say about the rhythm of prayer? How does time with God help you to better lead those you are called to lead? How can you be more intentional with your time with God?
2) Read Philippians 2:3-4. What does it mean to count someone more significant than yourself? Why is this an important quality for a leader? How can you be intentional to look out for the interests of others?
3) Personal Reflection: Rest is important. Do you have a Sabbath day, a day when you don’t work but you rest with God? If not, consider why you have not made this a priority.
Week 2 – Leadership 101
Ephesians 4:14-16 – Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work. [NIV]
John 3:30 – He must increase, but I must decrease. [ESV]
Colossians 3:17 – Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father. [NASB]
Act in LOVE
1 Corinthians 16:14 – Do everything in love [NIV] (1 Corinthians 13)
Protect your MORAL AUTHORITY
1 John 3:18 – Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth. [NASB]
Matthew 20:26-28 – It is not this way among you, but whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be your slave; just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” [NASB]
Breakout Session Questions:
1) Read Matthew 23:1-26. In verse 3, what does Jesus say to the people? What would the behavior of the Pharisees and scribes do the people they were leading? In verse 4, we read of the heavy loads that are put on the shoulders of people—loads the leaders would not be willing to carry. What can we glean from this as a leader? Verse 13 is harsh. What does it say? What does that mean? Verses 23-24 speak of the giving of the scribes and Pharisees. How does this poorly reflect a leader? Verses 25-26 speak of the clean outside and the dirty inside. What does this mean for a leader?
“With all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” (v. 2-3 ESV)
- 2 With ALL
humility, lowliness of mind, modesty
gentleness, mildness, gentle strength (power with reserve & strength)
patience, forbearance, longsuffering, steadfastness, staying power
bearing with one another in love, enduring with, suffer, admit, persist
- 3 Eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace
ONE BODY – all part of one body
ONE SPIRIT – united by one Spirit – the Spirit of God – the Holy Spirit
ONE LORD – one Lord of all
ONE FAITH – one faith in Jesus Christ
ONE BAPTISM – one baptism in Christ
ONE GOD & FATHER OF ALL – one God, one Father of all
“To a true child of God, the invisible bond that unites all believers to Christ is far more tender, and lasting, and precious; and, as we come to recognize and realize that we are all dwelling in one sphere of life in Him, we learn to look on every believer as our brother, in a sense that is infinitely higher than all human relationships. This is the one and only way to bring disciples permanently together. All other plans for promoting the unity of the Church have failed.”
– A.T. Pierson
Bible Study Questions:
- Verse 7 mentions “grace given to each of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift.” What does this mean?
- Verse 11 mentions a list of different titles.
- What type of people were mentioned?
- What does Paul say these different people are responsible for?
- Verse 14 mentions what can happen to us.
- What can happen to us if we stay infants? What does this mean?
- How does this happen? (v. 14)
- How can we prevent this? (see verses 15-16)
- What happens when we each are united working together? (see verses 15-16)
This is one part of a 12-week Sermon Series and Bible Study focused on Ephesians. The 12 weeks include:
2 Corinthians 8:13-14 – “For I do not mean that others should be eased and you burdened, but that as a matter of fairness your abundance at the present time should supply their need, so that their abundance may supply your need, that there may be fairness.” (ESV) BURDEN & EASE
If one member of the body suffers – all suffer – 1 Corinthians 12:26
Burden causes fatigue, struggle, drowning—become overwhelmed & even angry
Yet we are to “Serve with gladness” – Psalm 100:2
- Delegation – You Cannot Do Everything
- Jethro & Moses (Exodus 18)
- Seven chosen for distribution including Stephen & Philip (Acts 6)
- Good reputation / Full of Spirit / Full of wisdom
- Know gifts / don’t serve in all areas – serve where you can give your all
- Not burdened that others may live at ease. Remember Exodus 16:18 – Manna was gathered and there was “nothing left over” and there was “no lack.” Each one gathered as much as they could eat.
- Recognize Burden – Take Note When You Are Drowning & Speak Up
- Moses says: “I am not able to carry all this people alone; the burden is too heavy for me” [Numbers 11:14 ESV]
- “Gather for me seventy of the elders… and I will take some of the Spirit that is on you and put it on them, and they shall bear the burden of the people with you, so that you may not bear it yourself alone.” [v. 16-17 ESV]
- Two is Better Than One [Ecclesiastes 4:9-12] – “Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a three-fold cord is not quickly broken.”(ESV)
- Jesus Above All
- Guard the Gospel [2 Timothy 1:12-14] “Which is why I suffer as I do. But I’m not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed, and I am convinced that he is able to guard until that Day what he has entrusted to me. Following the pattern of the sound words that you have heard from me, in the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. By the Holy Spirit who dwells within us, guard the good deposit entrusted to you.” (ESV)
- Keep aware not to take away from another’s walk. Equip. Empower.
Ephesians 4:15-16 “Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into Him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.” (ESV)