2 Corinthians

Paul: Zeal.

Introduction / Review:

zeal

Def: great energy or enthusiasm in pursuit of a cause or an objective.

Romans 12:11 - Do not be slothful in zeal...

Romans 9:1-3I am speaking the truth in Christ—I am not lying; my conscience bears me witness in the Holy Spirit—that I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsmen according to the flesh.

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Exodus 32:32 - But now, if you will forgive their sin—but if not, please blot me out of your book that you have written.

Why I Am Fired Up to Share Christ (2 Cor 5:14-21):

  1. I am Controlled by Jesus' love. (2 Cor 5:14-15)
  2. I see people as Spiritual beings. (2 Cor 5:16-17)
  3. I Represent God to people! (2 Cor 5:18-20)
  4. I have a Life-Changing message! (2 Cor 5:21)

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Small Group Discussion
Read 2 Corinthians 5:14-21

1 - On a scale of 1-10, rate your zeal for Christ (1 = no zeal, 10 = on fire sharing Christ with everyone). How can you score a higher rating?

2 - How do you recognize a “red apple”? How can you start a conversation with them about Jesus Christ?

3 - Explain the Gospel using 2 Cor 5:21. Could you explain that to someone who needs to hear it?

BREAKOUT

Pray for: zeal, ability to spot “red apples”, and boldness to share Christ!

I Will Not Fear, I Will Be Strong.

Review / Introduction:

1 Corinthians 10:13 - No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

2 Corinthians 12:1-6

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The Path to Living in God's Strength in 3 Easy Steps! (2 Cor 12:7-10)

  1. Step 1: Acknowledge God's Sovereignty. (2 Cor 12:7)
  2. Step 2: Get Real with God. (2 Cor 12:7)
  3. Isaiah 40:31 - they who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength

  4. Step 3: Be Weak, so that grace is your strength. (2 Cor 12:9)
  5. Last Step: How Do I Know I Am Living In God's Strength? When I am Content. (2 Cor 12:10)

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Small Group Questions (Whole Group):
Read 2 Corinthians 12:1-10

  1. What was the worse piece of advice / lamest attempt at being comforted that you have ever experienced / heard?

  2. "Satan wants to tear you down and God wants to build you up - and they are both using the same thing to do it." React to this statement in light of Biblical and personal testimony.

  3. What's the difference between "saying your prayers" and "praying"?

  4. How do you know, truly know, that you are living in God’s strength? (See 2 Cor 12:10)

  5. What was your one big "take-away" from this passage / message? 
     

Breakout Questions:

When was the last time you truly prayed, on your face, crying out before the Lord? How can you be more consistent in doing so? Challenge one another on this and pray for one another. 

Because Giving Glorifies God

Review:

1 Corinthians 10:31 - ...whatever you do, do all to the GLORY of God.

How Does Giving Glorify God?

  1. Giving results in THANKFULNESS . (2 Cor 9:11-12)

  2. Giving proves AUTHENTICITY . (2 Cor 9:13)

  3. Giving grows RELATIONSHIPS . (2 Cor 9:14)

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Small Group Questions (Whole Group):
Read 2 Corinthians 9:11-15

  1. How would you define what it means to "glorify God"? How does financial giving glorify God?
     
  2. In 2 Corinthians 9:13, Paul says that giving is a proof of genuine salvation. How is giving an evidence that someone is truly born again?

Breakout Questions:

Pray for one another to grow as givers: rightly motivated, generous, and trusting God!

Because God Gives to Me

God's Economics 101:


  1. The PRINCIPLE. (2 Cor 9:6)


  2. The PRACTICE. (2 Cor 9:7)


  3. The PROMISE. (2 Cor 9:8)


  4. The PRECEDENT. (2 Cor 9:9)


  5. The PROVISION. (2 Cor 9:10)

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Small Group Questions (Whole Group):
Read 2 Corinthians 9:6-10

  1. How do people misapply this teaching? (think of the TV preachers!) What does the Bible actually teach about sowing and reaping when it comes to giving?
     
  2. Why does Paul quote Psalm 112:9 in 2 Corinthians 9:9?
     
  3. Explain "God loves a cheerful giver". What does that mean? Why does God give more to cheerful givers (hint: verses 8 and 10)?

Breakout Questions:

Pray for one another! Specifically to grow in generosity that trusts God to keep His Word about giving.

Because Jesus Loves to Give

When We Give Like Jesus:


We give SELFLESSLY. (2 Cor 8:9)


We FINISH what we start. (2 Cor 8:10-12)


EVERYONE is taken care of. (2 Cor 8:13-15)

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Parents / Children Discussion Questions:

Discuss this passage / sermon with your children this week! Ask: "Why does the church take an offering? What happens with that money?" Explain how the money we give: supports this ministry, helps Harvest Bible Fellowship (which trains pastors and plants more churches), and helps other various needs (Moldova church offering, Action Packs, etc).

Small Group Questions (Whole Group):
Read 2 Corinthians 8:8-15

  1. Explain 2 Corinthians 8:9. What does this mean? Why did Paul say this in the middle of a passage on giving? What does this say about how we should give?
     
  2. Why did Paul quote Exodus 16:18 in 2 Corinthians 8:15? What was his point?

Breakout Questions:

Pray for one another!