RIVERSIDE BLOG

Post Author: Nathanael Ballew

Nathanael is a member of our leadership team and is responsible for organising all the Gatherings that happen across Riverside. He also works for Riverside Performing Arts (RPA).
February 27, 2022
And, Breathe | S6: A Transformed Community

Teaching Series Introduction:

“If God was small enough to be comprehended, he would not be big enough to be worshipped.” (Imad Shehadeh)

This is a series all about the Holy Spirit. Who, or what, is the Holy Spirit?

The bible is mainly written in Hebrew (Old Testament) and in Greek (New Testament). Each of these languages has one word (Hebrew – ruach; Greek – pneuma) that is used for three different English words – Spirit, breath and wind. And so, the way the bible describes the Holy Spirit can be both confusing and illuminated by these ideas…the wind that powers the sails, and the breath that gives life. So, what role does the Holy Spirit play in the life of Christians? This series takes a deep dive in who the Holy Spirit is and the difference he makes in our lives. It’s time to breathe again.

“The Lord of hosts is with us. He’s not watching us move through this stream of history, he’s actually navigating it with us through his Holy Spirit.” (Karen A Ellis)

Session 6:
A Transformed Community

TEACHING SERIES: And, Breathe
TITLE: Session 6: A Transformed Community
BY: Nathanael Ballew
DATE: 27 February 2022
PASSAGE: Romans (Chaper 12, verses 3 to 8) Read online

Listen Online: Podcast
Watch Online: Church At Home

Listen Online

Watch Online

Children’s & Youth Resources:

These resources will be used within the various groups in-person on a Sunday morning. This means that if you are unable to attend one of our Sunday Gatherings, you can still study and follow along with the same material at a time that is best for you. However you study, we encourage you to engage with your group as much as possible. If you would like to know about how you can get connected with our children’s or youth groups please contact us, we would love to hear from you.

Youth Resources

This Weeks Youth Video:

Children’s Resources

This weeks Children’s Video:

Bible Study Questions:

There are three different sets of questions for you to use, whether you are exploring God’s word within your Life Group, in other group settings, or simply using them on your own.

A. DISCUSSION STARTERS

These are simple questions to provoke discussion together out of the talk (ideal if you are watching our Sunday Service online with others in your group):

 

1) Was there anything that particularly struck you during the talk?

 

2) Was there anything that you didn’t necessarily agree with, or found difficult to understand in the talk?

 

3) How do you think you might live differently as a result of the talk?

B. QUESTIONS TO EXPLORE

These are questions that are based on the talk and the surrounding themes:

    1) When you think of church, do you think of it more as an event that you attend, or a family that you are a part of? Why?

     

    2) Read Romans 12:3-8. Paul is writing about how the Holy Spirit enables us to each play our part in the family of God’s people. What do you think v3 looks like in practice?

     

    3) In v4-5, the church is compared with a body. Think about a time when you have been unwell, or injured a part of your body. What did that reveal  about how essential every part of the body is? What might that reveal about the way every part of the church is both necessary and important?

     

    4) In v6, Paul highlights that gifts are a an act of sheer grace – not deserved or earned. How should this change the way you see the gifts of the Spirit?

     

    5) Notice in the list that Paul gives (v6-8) that there are two broad categories of these gifts – some for the church gathered in worship, and some about giving care to others. Both of these categories are oriented towards other people, not ourselves. The gifts we have been given are crucial for blessing other people! How does this change how you see your role as the church gathers in worship, and how you see your role in caring for others?

     

    6) In a culture that so highly values self-fulfilment why is being part of a church family/body so revolutionary? As we come out of this pandemic what might you need to do to use your gifts well?

     

    7) Take some time to pray – asking that God would help you see the crucial you can play in helping others.

     

    C. GOING DEEPER

    These are questions to help you go a little deeper, by exploring the wider biblical context.

     

    1) Imagine that you have to describe what ‘church’ is to someone who knows absolutely nothing. How would you describe ‘church’?

     

    2) Read Romans 12:3-8. Why do you think that verse 3 is so important when it comes to thinking about spiritual gifts? See also Philippians 2:3-5.

     

    3) Alongside verse 4-5, read 1 Corinthians 12:12-15. What do you think it means when Paul writes that ‘each member belongs to all the others’? (v6) What are the potential dangers of misunderstanding this verse?

     

    4) Notice in the list that Paul gives (v6-8) that there are two broad categories of these gifts – some for the church gathered in worship, and some about giving care to others. Both of these categories are oriented towards other people, not ourselves. The gifts we have been given are crucial for blessing other people! How does this change how you see your role as the church gathers in worship, and how you see your role in caring for others?

     

    5) Alongside the list of gifts in v6-8, read 1 Peter 4:11, Acts 20:35, Matthew 28:19-20, Hebrews 10:24-25. What is our attitude so important in how we use the gifts that God has given to the church?

     

    6) Russell Moore says, ‘In the New Testament, we don’t find our gift through self-examination and introspection and then find ways to express it. Instead, we love one another, serve one another, help one another, and in so doing we see how God has equipped us to do so.’ What do you make of that? What action might it prompt in your life?

     

    7) Take some time to pray – asking that God would help you see the crucial you can play in helping others.

      TRANSCRIPT:

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