NOTE: Following is a copy of the discussion guide that will be used in MoSt Church’s LIFE groups tomorrow (Jan. 6). This guide will enable your follow-up of my sermon tomorrow morning entitled The 3 R’s: Respect. Look under the category title “LIFE group guides” and you’ll find an archive of previous discussion guides. All Scripture texts reproduced below are from the CEB.
To recall the fundamental place respect holds in all our dealings with God and people.
• I will make of you a great nation and will bless you. I will make your name respected, and you will be a blessing. (Gen. 12.2)
• Each of you must respect your mother and father … (Lev. 19.3)
• You must rise in the presence of an old person and respect the elderly. (Lev. 19.32)
• … respect the LORD and act accordingly, because there can be no injustice, playing favorites, or taking bribes when it comes to the LORD our God. (2 Chron. 19.7)
• The fear of the LORD is wise instruction, and humility comes before respect. (Prov. 15.33)
• … if I’m a master, where is my respect? says the Lord … to you priests who despise my name. So you say, “How have we despised your name?” (Mal. 1.6)
• … give respect to those you should respect … (Rom. 13.7)
• … submit to each other out of respect for Christ. (Eph. 5.21)
• Brothers and sisters, we ask you to respect those who are working with you, leading you, and instructing you. (1 Thes. 5.12)
• … they should first learn to respect their own family and repay their parents, because this pleases God. (1 Tim. 5.4)
• … let’s serve in a way that is pleasing to God with respect and awe … (Heb. 12.28)
• Have respectful fear of God. (1 Pet. 2.17)
Icebreaker questions are meant to help us all just start talking. Choose one of the following to discuss as a group.
1. In 1965, Otis Redding wrote the song that Aretha Franklin made famous in 1968: Respect. How much of this song’s lyrics can your group recall?
2. What words do you consider as virtual synonyms of the word “respect?” Antonyms?
These questions are meant to help us grapple with Scripture related to this morning’s sermon. Choose some.
1. Humility precedes respect (Prov. 15.33). What else might precede receiving respect?
2. How could/should/would a church express respect for her leaders (1 Thes. 5.12)?
3. What marks of disrespect are singled out for explicit mention in the preceding texts?
These questions facilitate our sharing what we sense God’s Spirit is doing with us thru his word. Choose some.
1. Respect has degrees, but can a human become worthy of zero respect? Explain.
2. What sort of things quickly breed disrespect in your heart for others? Why?
3. What behaviors in people do you witness the church rewarding with respect?
4. Is this statement true or false: “Live right and you’ll be respected.” Explain.
5. Sinless Jesus was not respected, but was despised and rejected. How could this be?
6. How does a person’s respect for Christ affect their respect for people?
7. Finish this sentence: “During my life in Christ, I believe I’ve grown in respect of ____.”