Updated: Apr 23
(for individual, one-on-one discipleship, or community groups)
We're working through Ephesians Chapter 2, but before we do let's review some key ideas from Chapter 1.
God is up to something through Jesus Christ.
This something is humanity's rescue and restoration.
It extends and includes all people.
All those who accept God's rescue not only become restored but they become part of God's restoration plan for the world through Jesus.
Paul's prayer - the first step - as we embark on this journey is that we would have more Jesus.
More Jesus leads to more wisdom and insight.
God's power is at work in our lives.
What would you add? What were your big take-aways?
Let's Not Overcomplicate It
Last week we talked about not overcomplicating it. We want to keep with that idea and suggest this week that you try reading Chapter 2 in a different translation/paraphrase than you normally do.
That's it. Just read it in a version you don't have or wouldn't normally read it.
If you are new(er) to reading Scripture a different translation may help, give you greater access to the message the writers are trying to convey. If you are more familiar with Scripture, reading a different translation helps because it causes you to listen more closely and to hear the message in a new way.
Now you don't have to go out and buy a bunch of Bibles. Just go to Bible Gateway. You can type in the text you want to read and choose the translation you want to read. You can even choose to read multiple versions and compare them side-by-side by click on the parallel icon on the left. (Be careful you don't overdo it though. There's no medal for most translations read.)
Not sure what translation to read? Here are a few to choose from: NIV, NLT, NRSV, AMP, HSCB, MSG
So now let's talk.
As always we recommend starting with:
What words, phrases, or ideas are repeated? Do you see any other ideas or words repeated?
Then here are a few more to get you thinking:
What stands out to you?
If you did read more than one translation, what did you notice that was different or clearer?
How is life different between what they were at one time and what they are now? Look at verses 1-10 and then 11-22.
What impact on our relationships does Ephesians 2:8 have (the fact that we can't boast about the grace God has given us)? Check out Galatians 3:26-29. How would this change the way we see ourselves, each other, and interact with others outside our community?
What else does Paul say we are (verses 19-22)? What does it mean to be those things?
And it's always good to end with:
What do we learn about God (his character) in light of how He sees us and what he calls us to?
More Important than You Know
Talk to someone else about what you've read. These are great questions we'll use each week to apply the message and book of Ephesians to our daily lives.
Summarize what you've read in a couple of words or sentences.
What is the Holy Spirit saying to you?
What do you need to do about it?
How can we help you do what you said you needed to do?
Feel free to share what you're learning in the comments below.
Did you know with this little blog post and those 4 questions at the end you could lead a community group or study with one other person? Seriously! You could! If you're interested, let us know and we'll help you get connected and get started.