Discussion Questions

Faith Step DEBRIEF & FOLLOW UP

• What is the Holy Spirit showing you from this last week?
• How does God desire for you to grow as a disciple or disciple maker?
• How can this group help you in your Christian journey?

WEEK 10 - discussion questions

• In what ways have you experienced the attack of the enemy? How did you respond in those situations? 
• What are some ways we can help one another during those times?

Strengthened - Day 5 - Legacy: Beloved/Faithful/Servant

Listen:

Ephesians 6:21-24 21 So that you also may know how I am and what I am doing, Tychicus the beloved brother and faithful minister in the Lord will tell you everything. 22 I have sent him to you for this very purpose, that you may know how we are, and that he may encourage your hearts. 23 Peace be to the brothers, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 24 Grace be with all who love our Lord Jesus Christ with love incorruptible.

Learn:

How do you want to be remembered? At Resurrection Church we often use the word “legacy.” It speaks to the heart of the aforementioned question.

Paul sent the Ephesian letter via a man named Tychicus. Not much is known of Tychicus. We know that he was from Asia (Acts 20:4), and we have a few words in the NT to describe him. In Ephesians we read “beloved brother” and “faithful minister.” Elsewhere we read “fellow servant” with Paul. He was a person known as “beloved” and “faithful.” Isn’t that a beautiful legacy?

When we think of people in the Bible, we often think of big names: Abraham, Moses, David, Paul, and Jesus. But do we consider people like Tychicus? Faithful, beloved servants who helped to move the Gospel forward…but had seemingly small roles. Most of us will play seemingly small roles in the greater story of God. Tychicus fulfilled his calling, lovingly and faithfully. How about you?

Live:

• How do you think you’ll be remembered?

• How would you most like to be remembered as a disciple of Jesus?

• Action - Spend some time in prayer praising God for a continued legacy moving the Gospel forward.

Strengthened - Day 4 - Praying in the Spirit

Listen:

Ephesians 6:18-20 - 18 praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, 19 and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak.

Learn:

Some of the fondest memories I had growing up were times when I went camping or fishing with my dad. I can still remember the feeling of hitting the road in his 1972 El Camino. The best trips were the ones that took the longest. These times were a treasure, not only because it provided me with an escape from my younger siblings but also because along the way I had my dad’s full attention. He heard me and I heard him.

Prayer for the Christian is communion with God. It’s an essential part of our being in relationship with our Heavenly Father. We can know that he hears us because his word tells us so (Psalm 139:1–4). We know that God wants us to pray; he has created it so we can enjoy him (Rev. 3:20). However, what we ask of God must be in accordance to his will (1 John 5:14).

Paul, in verses 18-20, makes a distinct connection to the armor of God and praying. Paul said that praying in the Spirit is our main weapon of warfare. He reminds us again that we cannot succeed against our enemy if we rely on ourselves. He also outlines when, how, and who we should pray for. When should we pray? At all times. How? In the Spirit. For Who? For all the saints. God desires that we would pray to him about everything (Heb. 4:16) and to seek his guidance, counsel, and protection in our lives. All this because he is our good and loving father who has “blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing” (Eph. 1:3), who desires to hear us and us to hear him.

Live:

• How does having access to the God of the universe make you feel?

• In what ways are you neglecting that relationship?

• Action - Spend some time in prayer praising God for his listening heart and answers to prayer in your life.

Strengthened - Day 3 - Standing Firm

Listen:

Ephesians 6:13-17 - 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. 14 Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. 16 In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; 17 and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God,

Learn:

As a teenager I played football on my school’s team primarily as a defensive guard. I wasn’t the biggest of players or the fastest, but I could hold position on a run and break through the offensive line when needed; however, my primary role was to keep the other team from passing through - to hold position.

Similarly, the apostle Paul calls Christians to be on guard. To hold position and stand firm when our opponent, the devil, is coming against us. When he attacks and attempts to take us off course. Off the mission that God has given to his people. As he noted in the previous verses, it is impossible to stand against these attacks apart from the strength of God, and we can only stand when we are equipped with the full armor that God has given us in Jesus Christ.

The disciple who is not abiding in Jesus is like a defensive guard, with no gear on, standing on the line of scrimmage during a game. We make ourselves vulnerable to the lies and accusations of our spiritual enemies when we are not fully suited in the protection of our Lord and savior and when we neglect the protection God has supplied for us.

Notice in the verses above that our only offensive weapon is, “the sword of the Spirit.” We war against Satan’s schemes with the truth of the gospel to remind ourselves that Jesus has won the victory. In Him we can stand believing: in God’s truth (John 17:17), that the Lord is our righteousness (2 Cor. 5:21), that the gospel brings us peace (Rom 5:8), fighting the fight of faith (Eph. 2:8), trusting our salvation is secure (Acts 4:12), by the power of the Spirit (Rom. 8:9-11).

Live:

• How are you guarding yourself from the attacks of the enemy?

• Are you wearing the whole armor of God?

• Action - Spend some time in prayer asking God to make you aware of the enemy’s attacks and to help you to stand against them when they come.

Strengthened - Day 2 - God's Armor

Listen:

Ephesians 6:11-12 - 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.

Learn:

Armor is an essential part of any soldier’s arsenal. This was true for the soldiers of Rome and remains the same today. Though the technology of armor has improved, the principle has remained the same: protect the wearer during battle. During Paul’s life he would have seen many Roman soldiers, especially in his later years when he was imprisoned and guarded by them. They primarily wore armor made from strips of iron and leather (lorica segmentata in Latin), a metal helmet, a rectangular shield, a short sword for stabbing and a long spear for throwing. It is noted that the soldiers even carried their weapons during times of peace. They were always ready for battle.

We as Christians are in warfare. It is a spiritual warfare, not against flesh and blood, but against the schemes of the devil, the cosmic powers, and against the spiritual forces of evil. Paul is not calling us to this war but is rather stating it as fact. His desire is for us to be aware of our, very real, spiritual enemies who are under the headship of Satan. All of which are against us and want nothing more than to knock us down against our place of standing. However, God is our protection and our armor.

Notice that in Isaiah 59:17, the Lord is the one who wears the armor. And in Psalm 28:7, David proclaims that the Lord is his strength and shield. This means that the armor of God is from him and it is his armor that we are given. And the schemes of the devil cannot touch us when we stand against them in the power of God. Jesus has won and in him we have victory (Rom. 6:20, Heb. 2:14).

Live:

• How does being protected by God make you feel?

• Where in your life are you living in a peace mentality rather than warfare?

• Action - Spend some time in prayer praising God for the armor he provides us in Jesus.

Strengthened - Day 1 - True Strength

Listen:

Ephesians 6:10 - 10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might.

Learn:

In the first three chapters of Ephesians, Paul is identifying our inheritance and identity in Jesus. The next two and a half chapters then address how we are to walk as God’s children. Now, in his closing remarks to the church, Paul gives a discourse on the warfare we will face as believers. This warfare is a spiritual battle that we all take part in; however, a battle that we are not to fight in our own assets, in our own power, or alone. Paul rather, urges us to rely upon the Lord and his might. He reminds us that God wants to be our strength, as his strength is immeasurable.

This means that our Lord is not far off looking out and waiting to see how we will do on the battlefield. Our God is fighting for us and desires to be our strength. He is walking through the difficulties of life right beside us.

Whatever we face in life whether physical or spiritual battles, suffering or hardships - we can trust that the Lord “who made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them” (Psalm 146:6-7) is with those he chose and adopted in Christ (Eph. 1:4-5). The beauty is that God is a loving father who holds us up, when we are downcast (Psalm 3:30), who will be with us always (Matthew 28:20b), and who has proven all this at the cross of Jesus.

Live:

• How have you been relying upon your strength rather than the Lord’s?

• What would it look like for you to trust in His strength and not your own?

• Action - Spend some time in prayer praising God for His strength and might.

Strengthened - Week 10 - Memory Verse

Ephesians 6:10-12

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.