Be Strong

Ephesians 6:10-13 | November 5th, 2017

 

Warm Up: As we come to Ephesians 6, Paul returns to a focus on “strength,” a theme woven throughout the letter. Physical training is common in our culture. The benefits of health, fitness, and exercise are well understood. What do you learn in physical exercise and disciplines that can be carried over into a growing and strength-building walk with Jesus? 

Read Ephesians 6:10-13. Paul is conveying to the Ephesians that they need to be strong, not to “show off,” but for the purpose of engaging in the spiritual battle. As Pastor George mentioned, “every believer is engaged in the spiritual battle, whether we want to or not.”

• How have you experienced this spiritual battle at various times in your life? 

• In what ways are you battling right now? 

• What enables you to “stand strong” most in the midst of battles? 

• On Sunday, Pastor George laid out 5 ways we can be strengthened in the Lord: 1. Being filled with the Holy Spirit 2. Engaging in worship 3. Practicing thanksgiving 4. Submitting ourselves to Christ 5. Knowing the Word of God and practicing prayer. Read through the following passages together and discuss how they inspire you to stand strong. Discuss anything else the Holy Spirit brings to mind as you contemplate these passages:

1. Being filled with the Holy Spirit

“Therefore, dear brothers and sisters, you have no obligation to do what your sinful nature urges you to do. For if you live by its dictates, you will die. But if through the power of the Spirit you put to death the deeds of your sinful nature, you will live. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when He adopted you as His own children.” — Romans 8:12-15

2. Engage in Worship 

“But let all who take refuge in You rejoice; let them sing joyful praises forever. Spread Your protection over them, that all who love Your name may be filled with joy.” — Psalms 5:11

3. Practice Thanksgiving 

“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.” — Philippians 4:6-7,

4. Submitting oneself to Christ

“So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come close to God, and God will come close to you... Humble yourselves before the Lord, and He will lift you up in honor.” — James 4:7-8a,10

5. Knowing the Word of God

“For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires.” — Hebrews 4:12

Wrap Up: Being strong in the Lord takes discipline, sacrifice, and a willingness to follow Him. God’s desire for us is to be strong, the only question is “do we share in that desire for spiritual strength?” Spend some time in prayer asking for God’s strength for the spiritual battle you are currently engaged in. Share some areas that you know you are weak and that you would like prayer for to become stronger.