The Purpose of Ministry Bible Study

Week 3 – The Purpose of Ministry

Colossians 1:24-2:5

PRAY

Begin this time in prayer, confessing any sins you can recall, thanking the Lord for the gift of His Word, and asking for His Spirit to guide your study.

MEMORIZE

Colossians 1:28 – Write it out to get your memorization started.

OBSERVE

Record your observations as you read the passage.

  1. List every verb in the passage.
  1. Record any repeated theme or phrase within this passage.
(Also, include words and phrases that are closely related, even if not exact duplicates (such as “philosophy” and “elementary principles of the world”). You will also want to highlight things that are repeated in other passages (such as “elementary principles” found also in 2:20). Repeated concepts reveal something important to the author’s argument or provide clues to understanding his flow of thought.)

INTERPRET

A skill that is a bridge between observation and interpretation is to create and answer your own questions. The chart below provides examples of the types of questions you might ask.

WHO IS

WHAT IS THE

WHY DID THE AUTHOR

HOW

…Paul talking about?

…accomplishing the action?

…benefiting from the action?

….meaning of this word?

…significance of this phrase?

…implication of this statement?

…relationship between these phrases?

…choose this word?

…include this phrase, statement, or command?

…not say __________ ?

…was this action accomplished?

…will this situation occur?

  1. Create and answer any two of your own interpretive questions from this passage.
  2. How does 1:24-2:5 relate to 1:15-23? (Hint: Notice the change of subject from “you” in 1:15-23 to “I” here.)
  3. Answer the following questions about Paul’s role as a minister from this passage …

    Why does Paul refer to his role as a “stewardship” in 1:25? (See Luke 16:2-4; 1 Corinthians 9:17; Ephesians 3:2)

      1. What were the responsibilities of his role as a minister?
      2. What was the goal or purpose of these responsibilities?
      3. What resources had God provided to carry out these responsibilities?
  4. What was lacking in Christ’s afflictions that Paul was filling up? (See 2 Corinthians 1:3-7; 4:7-18; Philippians 1:12- 14; 2 Timothy 2:8-10) In contrast, what was NOT lacking in Christ’s afflictions? (See Hebrews 7:27; 9:12, 28; 10:10) 
  5. What does it mean to strive according to Christ’s power in verse 29? (See Ephesians 1:18-21 and Philippians 2:12-13) How do we practically depend on the strength of the Lord)
APPLY

LIVE, WORK, PLAY MAP
In Jesus’s time, a “family” would include workers, extended family, and people residing in their home. For us, our circle can also include our family, our friends, coworkers, neighbors and acquaintances. It can include the guy at the gas station that you see at each fill up or the barista that serves you that mocha latte each morning. It is anyone that we commonly encounter on a regular basis which gives us the ability to have influence in their lives.

Often when Jesus or His disciples found people that were open to the gospel, He would eventually share the message with their entire network. Jesus met the woman at the well (John 4), and after revealing His message and who He was as Messiah, she was amazed and told her whole town AND many believed! We want to see the same happen. As followers of Jesus, we are participants in a greater story of God’s plan of salvation. We are representatives of Christ wherever and with whomever we find ourselves.

Draw your own network: Think about the people in your spheres in influence. With whom do you live, work, and play? Be as exhaustive as possible and brainstorm away! Also, think about people that are just beyond your normal spheres. People that are that next step out- perhaps an acquaintance that you don’t know well, a neighbor who is different from you ethnically, socially, or economically; a community member that the Holy Spirit has put in your path but is more a stranger than friend? Be creative and think outside the box on this one!
 
  1. In what ways are you participating in seeing every person find and follow Jesus?
  1. As you think about your spheres of influence where you live, work, and play, can you identify people by name who do not know Jesus at all?
  1. Prayerfully determine the main biblical truth or principle that God revealed to you during your study. A few questions to ask are:

Is there a promise for me to claim?

Is there a truth for me to believe?

Is there a command for me to obey?

  1. What specifically will you do this week to begin applying this principle in your daily life? Determine how this truth or principle impacts the relationships in your life where you live, work, and play.

Create a personal application statement that expresses how you will apply this truth to your life.



Christ Is Sovereign Bible Study

Week 2 – Christ Is Sovereign

Colossians 1:15-23

PRAY 

Begin this time in prayer, confessing any sins you can recall, thanking the Lord for the gift of His Word, and asking for His Spirit to guide your study.

MEMORIZE

Colossians 1:15-16 – Write it out to get your memorization started.

OBSERVE

Continue to make observations; answering the question “What do I see?”

  1. List every description of the person of Jesus.
  1. List every description of what Jesus does.

INTERPRET

As you answer the questions below, continue using your first tow interpretive skills (use the context and study cross references), and add this third one – look up key words (such as “image” and “firstborn” in this passage. While doing so in English is helpful, looking them up in Greek is far better and is surprisingly easy thanks to the internet. Go to lumina.bible.org. Simply search for the passage at the top of the screen, and relevant text will appear. Be sure that “NET2” is your selected Bible in the drop down box, and then select the tab for “Greek” on the right side of the screen. Now hovering overran word in English will highlight the corresponding Greek term and reveal its Strong’s definition in the opposite window. For even further study, you can select a word, click the magnifying glass above it, then choose to run a “Word Search,” “Strong’s Search,” or “Word Study.” The first will provide all Biblical references that use the English term. The second will provide all Biblical references that use the Greek tern. And the third will provide the full definition and derivatives of the Greek term. What used to take multiple books and many hours now takes one internet browser and a few seconds! 

  1. In what ways does Paul establish both the death and humanity of Jesus in this passage? What happens if you deny one or the other?
  2. What range of meanings does the word “firstborn” (verses 15 and 18) have? (See Psalm 89:27; Luke 2:7; Romans 8:29; Hebrews 11:28, 12:22-23)
  3. What is the likeliest meaning of “firstborn” in this passage considering the surrounding context?
  4. Paul’s description of Christ as “firstborn” in verses 15 and 18 marks 2 different sections in this passage. How does. Paul’s description of Christ change from 1:15-18a to 1:18b-20?
  5. Focusing on verses 20-23, what is reconciliation? Why is it needed? How was it made possible? Who will enjoy it? (See Romans 8:20-21) When will it be finally accomplished?
  6. Explain the “if” statement of verse 23 in your own words. In particular, what is at stake by our continuance in the faith? Does our continued growth determine whether we are presented to Christ as saved or how Christ evaluates us at our inevitable presentation to Him? (See 1 Corinthians 3:10-15; 2 Timothy 2:10-13, 15; 1 John 2:27-28)

APPLY

  1. In what ways does Jesus occupy the first place in your life? In what areas do other people or other things take priority over Jesus?
  1. What truths about Christ do you want to remember when sharing about your faith in Him with others who do not know Him?
  1. Prayerfully determine the main biblical truth or principle that God revealed to you during your study. A few questions to ask are:

Is there a promise for me to claim?

Is there a truth for me to believe?

Is there a command for me to obey?

  1. What specifically will you do this week to begin applying this principle in your daily life? Determine how this truth or principle impacts the relationships in your life where you live, work, and play.

Create a personal application statement that expresses how you will apply this truth to your life.



Grateful for Remaining Faithful Bible Study

Week 1 – Grateful for Remaining Faithful

Colossians 1:1-14

PRAY 

Begin this time in prayer, confessing any sins you can recall, thanking the Lord for the gift of His Word, and asking for His Spirit to guide your study.

MEMORIZE

Colossians 1:9-10 – Write it out to get your memorization started.

OBSERVE

Every time we study the Bible, the first thing to ask is, “What do I see?”. This is the crucial skill of observation, and it lays the groundwork for the rest of the study. We will learn a new observation skill each week to practice along with the others we have already learned. This week, simply reach the passage and write down one to two observations for each verse in the space below. Observations might identify people, places, or events, point out repeated words or key terms, record important connections between words and sentences, or even pain tout something missing that we expected to see. For example, an observation from verse 1 is “Paul identifies as an apostle.”

  1. What key themes does Paul introduce at the beginning of this letter?
  1. Based on your observations, what is the general tone of the beginning of this letter?

INTERPRET

Observations from Colossians 1:1-14 should have stirred up questions like, “What is an apostle?” How do we answer such questions? Fortunately, we do not have to run to a commentary or study Bible for the answers (though these are helpful tools to check our conclusions)! The most important interpretation skill is to use the context. Look for important clues in the sentences and paragraphs that come before and after the vests in question. Try to follow the author’s flow of thought through the whole chapter. Using the context may take to you to the previous section and cause you to reach ahead in the book for clues. A second skill is to study related to the verses you are studying. Each lesson atypically has cross references to look up. 

  1. The word gospel simply means “good news.” What particular good news are Paul and Timothy speaking of in 1:5? (See Romans 1:1-17 and 1 Corinthians 15:1-6) How does the rest of this passage demonstrate why this message is such good news?
  1. What is the relationship between faith, love, and hope in verses 4-5? How do they fit together? Why is each so essential to our spiritual lives? If one is weak, how are they other two affected? (See 1 Corinthians 13:13 and Ephesians 1:15-18)
  1. In verses 9-12, why does Paul pray for these believers to be filled with knowledge, wisdom, and understanding? What should these things produce in our lives? (See Romans 12:2 and James 3:17)
  1. According to this passage, what had God done for us so that we can “walk in a manner worthy of the Lord”? (See Acts 26:18; Romans 8:2-4; Ephesians 1:19-20)
  1. In verse 12, for what “inheritance” are we to be thankful? How does it relate to the redemption provided to us in verse 14? (See also Colossians 3:24; Romans 8:23; Ephesians 1:13-14)

APPLY

Our Bible study is only complete once we apply what we’ve learned. Begin by answering a few reflection questions designed to demonstrate how each passage relates to our own lives. Next, step back and look at the passage as a whole and list potential principles. A “principle” is simply a fact or command stated or implied in a particular passage that is practically relevant to our lives. A principle is not specific to a particular person or time. Finally, decide on specific action steps the tyou will begin to take right away to apply the principle in your daily life and consider how the principle impact the relationships in your life.

  1. If we are to please God “in all respects,” then which areas of your life would not be pleasing to Him? What needs to change so that those areas of your life are realigned to His will and desire?
  1. Are you trying to please God and do good works in your own strength? How can you depend on His Spirit this week in a new way?
  1. Prayerfully determine the main biblical truth or principle that God revealed to you during your study. A few questions to ask are:

Is there a promise for me to claim?

Is there a truth for me to believe?

Is there a command for me to obey?

  1. What specifically will you do this week to begin applying this principle in your daily life? Determine how this truth or principle impacts the relationships in your life where you live, work, and play.

Create a personal application statement that expresses how you will apply this truth to your life.



Following Paul’s Example – Bible Study Guide

A Generous Life

Week 1 – Following Paul’s Example

Bible Study Guide

Pray: Begin this time in prayer, confessing any sins you can recall, thanking the Lord for the gift of His Word, and asking for His Spirit to guide your study.

MEMORIZE: Acts 20:35 – Write it out to get your memorization started.

OBSERVE: Acts 20:17-35

  1. Write down any observations you have in this passage (i.e. people, places, repeated words, key terms, etc.).
  1. List the ways Paul lived his life as an example for the church leaders to follow.

Interpret: Acts 20:17-35

  1. Paul says in verse 18 that he “lived among you the whole time from the first day that I set foot in Asia.” Why does Paul make it a point to stress that he lived among them?
  1. What does Paul mean by verse 24 when he says that he does not give value to his life? In what does Paul see the value for his life?
  1. Read Ezekiel 33:1-6. How does this relate to Paul’s words in verse 26? How is Paul “innocent of the blood of all”?
  1. Paul points out in verse 33 that he lived a life free from coveting things. Why is coveting someone else things such a bad thing? (see Exodus 20:17, Ephesians 5:5, Colossians 3:5)
  1. Paul mentions in verse 35 that Jesus says “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” How does this compare to Jesus’ outlining a person who is blessed in Matthew 5:3-12?

Apply: Acts 20:17-35

  1. Why do you think God “gave” His Son? What did the Son give? Was it a willing gift?
  1. What is one thing that stood out to you from this week’s sermon?
  1. What is the best way to “help the weak”? List one way you can do that this week.
 


Jonah Bible Study

How do we respond when God calls us to do something? Do we listen or ignore Him? As Pastor Ryan preaches through the book of Jonah on Sunday mornings, you are invited to take your own personal journey through the book as well. This Bible study guide will help you through the process of studying the book of Jonah on your own or in a small group. We hope that this will help you understand the book of Jonah on a deeper level than you had before.