Fighting Together for The Faith

Philippians 1:27-30 

October 2nd - 8th, 2016

Warm Up: How important is our unity as believers in Jesus Christ and how do we fight for it? These were the questions raised in Sunday’s message as we looked at Philippians 1:27-30 together. Read John 17:21. According to Jesus, what is the reason we must be unified? What might this look like? Discuss the implications of this. 

  • Three truths about biblical unity were addressed at the beginning of Sunday’s sermon:     1. Believers’ unity is made in heaven. In other words, we don’t need to create unity between believers because it already exists based on the finished work of Jesus Christ. 2. Our unity does not mean uniformity where we are all the same (1 Corinthians 12:27) and 3. Unity will always cost us because others will oppose the very thing we have unified around. Our unity cost God everything in Christ. It will cost us time, commitment, and sacrifices as we join the cause of Christ. We will likely suffer as a result.
  • Which idea are you most familiar and comfortable with? Which idea are you least comfortable with? Why? 
  • How unified do you believe the Church at large is? What impact (positive or negative) does this make on the watching world around us? 
  • On Sunday George mentioned the reality of spiritual battle and how, in particular, those who graduate high school and step into higher education are radically confronted with ideologies and worldviews contrary to God and His Word. When looking at the landscape of professors across the nation, one could easily argue that it is largely made up of those who do not fear the Lord (Prov. 1:7) nor follow Jesus Christ. 
  • Read Philippians 1:28 aloud. In what ways have you personally experienced “intimidation” in these “higher education” settings? 
  • What is our role as followers of Jesus Christ to our kids and future generations?
  • Read Philippians 3:18-20. In Philippi, there were those who used the name of Christ yet sensuality in food, sex, and drink mastered them. They lost their sense of shame and became completely desensitized. Dwight Pentecost explains this saying, “By this the apostle means they have accepted the standards of a godless world and make those standards their standards. As long as society approves, they conclude that a holy God will approve. Instead of setting their course according to the revelation of the holiness of God given in His Word, they do as the Romans do. This tendency is pervading the Philippian church. With no difficulty at all, they conform to the standards of the world around them, and they are at ease because the world approves.” (Pentecost, J.D. The Joy of Living: A Study of Philippians) 
  • In what ways do you sense believers in our culture acquiescing to its values? Why?

Wrap Up: Pray through these three ‘calls to conduct’ for citizens of Heaven (Phil. 1:27). 1. Standing together in one spirit (we stand together like soldiers holding a line.) 2. Fighting together with one purpose (same team with the same goals) and 3. Struggling together through suffering (persecution and prison were an honor in Christ).