Study Questions (Suggested time: 40 min)
Please complete these questions prior to your group’s meeting time.
1) Read Ephesians 4:1-2. The first half of Ephesians (chapters 1-3) is a reminder of what Christ has done for us and who we are in Him. In chapter 4, Paul begins to explain how we’re to live out of the new life Christ has given us.
How does the rest of this passage help us understand what Paul meant by walking (living) in a manner worthy of our calling?
2) In verse 2, Paul mentions four qualities that characterize those who are walking in a manner worth of their calling: humility, gentleness, patience and love.
- Humility is seeing myself in a proper light – as one who is entirely dependent on God. In order to have humility, empowered by the Spirit, we must renounce self-centeredness.
- Gentleness is being kind, careful and strong in the midst of chaotic division and anger. In order to have gentleness, empowered by the Spirit, we must renounce harshness and violence.
- Patience is endurance – the ability to wait out something tedious without getting upset. In order to have patience, empowered by the Spirit, we must renounce the tyranny of our own agendas.
- Love is a willful inclination (choice) to act for the good of another. In order to have love, empowered by the Spirit, we must renounce our rights.
a. Which of the above qualities comes easiest for you? If you’re willing, share how this plays out in your life.
b. Which of the above qualities is hardest for you to live out of? How come?
3) Read verses 1-6 again. Paul mentions one more thing in verse 3 that is crucial to coming together as believers. He says to “preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” Paul indicates that we’re already one in Christ. He doesn’t say to become unified – he says to preserve the unity that already exists in Christ.
a. Consider a follower of Jesus with whom you struggle to live in unity.
b. Does it change your thoughts about this person if you view them as one with you in Christ? If so, how?
4) According to this passage, “walking in a manner worth of your calling” is walking (living) in a way that promotes community and unity in the body of Christ. We’re tempted to think that Paul is telling us to live out these qualities (humility, gentleness, patience, love) in our individual lives, yet Paul emphasizes the need for relationships that preserve unity. .
a. Has living in community been helpful to your growth in Christ? If so, how?
b. Has your experience of living in community with others made it challenging to grow in Christ? If so, how?
c. What’s one thing you can do this week to begin “walking in a manner worthy of your calling” in one of these areas (humility, gentleness, patience, love, unity)? If you’d like, share with your group and ask them to pray for you.