Packed ongoing.001

 

 

I am currently preaching a sermon series on Sunday mornings at Wildwood Community Church called “Packed” – based out of Paul’s Epistle to the Ephesians.  During this series, I am using my blog to post study prompts, devotionals, sermon audio/video, and discussion questions to help facilitate personal or group study of this book.  NOTE: At the bottom of this post, I have a set of links to previous resources in this series.

Ephesians 6:10-20 – Study Prompts #1

  1. As you pray for your study today, ask God to use His Word in your life as the writer of Hebrews prayed in Hebrews 13:20-21: “May the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing His will, and may He work in us what is pleasing to Him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever.  Amen.”
  2. Read Ephesians 6:10-20
  3. In 6:10 Paul begins his conclusion to his letter.  As he starts his conclusion he encourages Christians to (literally): “allow yourself to be strengthen by the Lord.”  Based on your study of Ephesians and your knowledge of the Bible in general, how much strength can the Lord offer to those who “are strengthened” by Him?  Think of an issue you are facing right now in life.  Is the Lord’s power greater than, equal to, or less than the circumstances you face?
  4. In your understanding, what does it mean to be “strengthened” by the Lord?  What does it look like?  How would a Christian go about applying this command?
  5. After a call for strength, Paul reminds the Christian why they need strength.  He points out that Christians have a real enemy.  In 6:11, who does Paul identify as the enemy of the Christian, and how does Paul describe this enemies tactics?
  6. STUDY NOTE:  There is a significant contrast between God and the Devil.  Besides the obvious difference (one is perfectly good while one is absolutely evil), God has the divine attribute of omnipresence (He can be everywhere at once), while Satan is limited to one physical location at a time.  This does not mean that Satan only has INFLUENCE in one area at a time, but that he can only be in one PLACE at a time.  Satan has influence beyond his single location through his army of demonic angels who follow him.  Ephesians 6:12 refers to these demonic angels when it says, “rulers”, “authorities”, “cosmic powers over this present darkness”, and “spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.”  These are all descriptions of demons who, together with the Devil, wage war against Christians through their schemes.  It is important to note that both Satan and demons are seen here as real and as waging war against followers of Christ.  Before ever talking about the Christian putting on the armor of God, Paul argues for why armor is necessary by describing the powerful enemy who seeks to destroy and discredit followers of Christ.
  7. Paul says that the Christian’s real struggle in life is NOT against other people (“flesh and blood”).  Instead the struggle is against Satan and his schemes.  This perspective is directly related to the Christian’s purpose in life.  The Christian’s purpose in life is to glorify God by growing in our relationship with Him and sharing the good news of Jesus Christ with a lost and dying world.  As it pertains to that goal, our chief enemy is Satan, not other people.  Since this is the goal of the church, Satan, not other people, is the chief enemy that every church faces.  Much of the time, church’s (and individuals) spend time thinking that their enemy is “flesh and blood.”  What are some of the things you think are your “enemies” right now?  Why do you think that?  How would understanding that the devil is your enemy change your perspective and actions?
  8. When Paul ministered in the city of Ephesus, a riot broke out in the city.  The details of this event are recorded in Acts 19:21-41.  Scan those verses and detail what/who Paul might have been tempted to think was his enemy?  In what way was the devil Paul’s enemy during the riot in Acts 19?
  9. If we think that our fight is primarily against flesh and blood, we are tempted to think that we can win the fight based on our own “flesh and blood.”  However, understanding that the fight is primarily against those in the heavenly places, a Christian is drawn into more than just a life of external behaviors, but a life of internal prayer and dependence upon God who can win the fight on our behalf (“be strong in the Lord.”)  As you wrap up your time of study today, if you are able, listen to the Chris Tomlin song “Whom Shall I Fear (God of Angel Armies)” and reflect on its lyrics (listed below):

You hear me when I call

You are my morning song

Though darkness fills the night

It cannot hide the light

Whom shall I fear

You crush the enemy

Underneath my feet

You are my sword and shield

Though troubles linger still

Whom shall I fear

I know who goes before me

I know who stands behind

The God of angel armies

Is always by my side

The one who reigns forever

He is a friend of mine

The God of angel armies

Is always by my side

My strength is in Your name

For You alone can save

You will deliver me

Yours is the victory

Whom shall I fear

Whom shall I fear

I know who goes before me

I know who stands behind

The God of angel armies

Is always by my side

The one who reigns forever

He is a friend of mine

The God of angel armies

Is always by my side

And nothing formed against me shall stand

You hold the whole world in Your hands

I’m holding on to Your promises

You are faithful

You are faithful

And nothing formed against me shall stand

You hold the whole world in Your hands

I’m holding on to Your promises

You are faithful

You are faithful

You are faithful

I know who goes before me

I know who stands behind

The God of angel armies

Is always by my side

The one who reigns forever

He is a friend of mine

The God of angel armies

Is always by my side

I know who goes before me

I know who stands behind

The God of angel armies

Is always by my side

The one who reigns forever

He is a friend of mine

The God of angel armies

Is always by my side

The God of angel armies

Is always by my side

For more resources related to this study of Ephesians click on the following links:

Packed Schedule.001

5 thoughts on “Ephesians 6:10-20 (Study Prompts #1)

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