Texts: 1 Cor. 3 & 4
In a Nutshell: The cross is not the only major concept Paul uses to create an effective image for Christian living. A building, a temple of God is also used by Paul to describe the church. Those who are “working on building” the church should heed Paul’s warning to “build with caution!” It's much too easy to get side tracked by a misplaced allegiance and thus misdirected with our resolve.
Ice Breaker: If your life could be illustrated by a church or “house of worship” would it be a Crystal Cathedral, a thatched roof hut in the bush, a Mega Church, or a small country church in the mid-west? And why?
CONNECTING WITH THE TEXTS:
- What appeared to be going on in the Church at Corinth? (3:1-4)
- What illustration from nature did Paul use to describe the role of different church leaders? (3:5-9)
- How might the church’s growth be compared to the building of a structure? (3:10-15)
- Unravel verses 21-23. What do they say in your own words?
- How did Paul say leaders should be regarded? (4:1)
- What seems to fuel a cult of personality worship? (4:6,7)
- Looking at 4:8-21, what gave Paul his influence over the Christians at Corinth?
REFLECTING ON YOUR LIFE:
- What influences might promote people to have allegiance toward one leader over another?
- The message of the cross and the best influence of leadership is seen in sacrificing self for a bigger cause. This sounds foolish to the world. How can we know this is God’s desired pattern for living?
- What is the difference between a life that is sacrificial and someone that “plays the martyr” to recruit naive followers?
CONNECTING WITH YOUR CHURCH:
- How might the church protect itself from cult like personalities becoming leaders?
- What would a “shadow of the cross” cast across our leader’s lives look like in our church?
- What would a “shadow of the cross” cast across our church’s follower’s lives look like based on these Scriptures?
CARE Sheet Resources:
- The Cult of Personality, an edgy video (if you watch this be sure to watch the last 3 seconds)
- Here is a good article on religious personalities that display tendencies of “cult personality.”
- The Peterborough Cathedral video (A cruciform Church)
- The demise of the Crystal Cathedral - Robert Shuller's granddaughter speaks out.
- A history video about the Rock Churches of Ethiopia
- A summary of the question "What is a Cruciform Life?"
Sanctity of Human Life Resources:
- Columbia Life Network website:
- 40 Days for Life Campaign:
- Abby Johnson's Interview: a former abortion clinic manager
- Eclipse of Reason - 1987 video of a live abortion. (The first six minutes of this video is not graphic and is a good update from credible sources on the abortion issue)
Title: “Shadows of the Cross – on the Family”
Text: 1 Cor. 5-7
Questions: How would you define “sexual immorality” and it’s dangers with your children in light of 1 Cor. 5? How should Christians handle conflict between brothers and sisters in Christ in light of 1 Cor. 6? Based on 1 Cor. 7 is marriage good or bad? Why?
Parents with your children: This week work with your children on what makes a good friend and how Jesus expects us to treat our friends. Focus on the Family has a good on line article about teaching our kids a healthy world view on sexuality. Later this spring on Wednesday night we will have a session for parents of young children (teen and preteen) on what you can do to help your child be spiritually and emotionally ready for finding their life mate. (http://www.focusonthefamily.com/parenting/sexuality/teaching_children_healthy_sexuality.aspx)