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WOFCF Bible Explosion - 7/25/18


                                                                                                              July 25, 2018

                                                                                                                                                                                   WOFCF Bible Study Explosion

 

                        Fruit of the Spirit Series – Part 8 of 9, Gentleness (Gal 5:22-23)

 

Another virtue in connection with godly living is gentleness. Gentleness begins with an inner quality of heart-attitude. This evening, we will continue with our Fruit of the Spirit series on Gentleness. Our Adult Bible Study lessons will remain ‘group-discussion’ focused. Please feel free to share your thoughts, ask questions, and explain some of your experiences as we continue to grow in the Gospel and in ministry. So with no further delay, let’s begin with our weekly Bible Explosion!

 

Topic #1 Looks can be deceiving!

Apostle Peter points out that it is not one's external appearance that is paramount, "Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.” (). This kind of heart comes through the believer's union with Christ who describes his own self as "gentle and humble in heart" (Read ). This was demonstrated in his life. As prophesied, Jesus came to earth and lived in humble circumstances. Even later, his triumphal entry into Jerusalem came not as a victorious warrior or riding on a charger or in a splendid chariot, but "…your king comes to you, gentle and riding on a donkey, and a colt, the foal of a donkey.” ( & ). What can we learn from this and what does it say about us in demonstrating gentleness even in ministry?

 

Jesus said that appearances can deceive people into thinking that they are spiritually healthy. After the Pharisees accused Him and His followers of breaking religious traditions by not washing their hands before they ate, Jesus said that the Pharisees had laid aside commands of God for man-made, religious traditions. He reminded them that kingdom righteousness was not an outside-in job but an inside-out, transforming work of God. Jesus said that they looked impressive spiritually, but their hearts were diseased and distant: “[They] honor Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me” (Matt. 15:8). Their talk never matched their walk, thus producing the illegitimate child of hypocrisy.

 

What are your thoughts, any dialogues, or scriptures you like to share?  

 

Topic #2 Working on a ‘Heart-Attitude’

Accordingly, as a Fruit of the Spirit, gentleness begins with a heart-attitude that ‘flows’ out toward others. James remarks, "Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom.” (). Paul exhorts the Colossian Christians to have a Christ-like heart, which extends itself in gentleness toward others and, when necessary, reaches out in forgiveness (Read ). Paul similarly in  links gentleness of conduct with such virtues as humility, patience, and a love toward fellow believers, which makes "every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace."

 

Such a heart-attitude should be especially prominent in church leaders (Read ). In cases where needed spiritual correction is called for, the more spiritually mature should "restore that person gently (or in a spirit of gentleness). But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted." (Gal.6:1-2). As well, where defending the faith is involved believers should "always be ready to give an answer to anyone who asks about the hope you possess. Yet do it with courtesy and respect, keeping a good conscience" (). In both cases, then, the early proverb proves itself true: "A gentle response turns away anger but a harsh word stirs up wrath" (). In all these instances gentleness is not to be equated with weakness but rather involves an inner God-given strength of character, which shields a person from arrogance. Accordingly, gentleness is a fitting complement for an introduction to the last Fruit of the Spirit virtue…Self-Control.

 

What are your thoughts, any dialogues, or scriptures you like to share?


4 Comments to WOFCF Bible Explosion - 7/25/18:

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