Following God’s instructions for family relationships helps root us more deeply in Christ.
Tell about a time you rebelled against your parents only to later realize that they were right.
We all have baggage. Even if you were/are a model child, there are times when we disagree with our parents or those who raised us. Paul wrote instructions for family relationships in his letters to the Colossians and the Ephesians. The verses he wrote are very straightforward to read, and yet can be very difficult in practice. Let’s discuss ways in which we can become better children and better parents.
ENCOUNTERING GOD THROUGH BIBLE STUDY
Read Colossians 3:20-21 as well as the parallel verses in Ephesians 6:1-4
- What does it mean to be obedient?
- What is the connection between listening and obedience?
- Are you more likely to obey someone if you have a relationship with them? What is the connection between rules and relationship?
- Why are we apt to dismiss the advice of our parents?
- Take a look at the verses about parents. What does it mean to “exasperate our children”?
- What is the difference between “fault finding” and correcting wrong behavior?
- What is the difference between punishment and discipline?
- What faults do you find in your children (or do your parents find in you)? Are these true sins that you need to repent of or are they personal preferences?
Don’t feel the need to ask every question. Pick out the questions which will fit your group best and ask those – you know your group better than we do!
- According to Strong’s concordance, the Greek word used for “obey” in Colossians 3:20 means “to listen, to harken.” If you do a search for the word obey throughout the Bible, you will find that it is very often followed by the words “my voice.” Thus, obedience and instruction go hand in hand.
- See above. In addition, we have to listen to (or read) instruction to know what we are to obey.
- Pastor Chris notes that “rules without relationships equal rebellion.” Obviously Adam and Eve rebelled in spite of their relationship with God, but that story and the story of the prodigal son show us the importance of a relationship in bringing reconciliation.
- Opinion-some may feel that parents are out of touch, or there may be emotional baggage.
- Answer may be examples or opinions. For reference, the Strong’s definition here is “to stir up, excite, stimulate, to provoke”
- Opinion-“fault finding” suggests looking for things to be angry about rather than neutral observation.
- This may be opinion as well depending on what word people used when growing up. Note that part of the Strong’s definition of discipline includes “instruction which aims at increasing virtue.