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Joshua House Small Group Discussion Guide Church Is A Building Ephesians 2:19-22 Church Is ____ Series Teaching Summary This past week at Joshua House, Jonathan Rue led us through a passage of Ephesians dealing specifically with the concept of a church as both a singular meeting place where believers can congregate, and also a collective entity that is built upon the infallibility of Jesus Christ and filled with the Holy Spirit.
Introduction This passage comes at the end of chapter 2 of Ephesians, wherein Paul is speaking the Gentiles about their role in the plan of God. Around AD 61, when Ephesians is thought to have been written, Gentiles were defined as any people group not born into Jewish ancestry. Prior to the coming of Jesus, Gentiles weren’t readily and immediately accepted into the religious beliefs of the Jewish people, but with the coming of the Christ, salvation was made freely acceptable to all people. Paul’s letter underscores this fact, reaffirming the fact that Jesus became a bridge between all people and God.
Getting into the Text First, pray. Then, read Ephesians 2:19-22 together. • What does it say we are in vs 19? (members of God’s family) • Then again, we are referred to by an analogy in vs 20 and 21. What is it? (a house and a temple). Connection to today: • Have you ever been invited into a family that wasn’t your own before? • If so, how did that experience make you feel wanted and valued?
Finding Ourselves in the Text •
If the text is directed towards Gentiles ( so us, those who weren’t born Israeli and with a Judaic faith tradition), how does it feel to know you are now invited into being one of God’s people, or one of his family members? What do you think it means in vs 20 when it says that we are His house?
Connection to today: As Jonathan mentioned in his sermon this past weekend, houses and buildings were often built with large pieces of stone cut so exactly that there was no need for an adhesive or sealant to bond the stones to each other. How do you think our community can more clearly reflect that idea of being “carefully joined together in Him” (vs 21).
The Challenge from the text • Why do you think Jesus is referred to as the cornerstone? • What does it mean to you that Jesus is the cornerstone? Read Psalm 118:22 • How do you think these two verses connect? Do you think Paul was referencing the writings of the psalms when referring to Jesus as that cornerstone? Connection to today: • This about the analogy of us as a house for the Holy Spirit to live inside. How does that sync with your own experiences with the Holy Spirit, if that’s something you feel comfortable sharing. • Jonathan talked about how we as the Church are being built everyday into a more perfect offering for God. How is God building you right now?
Ministry Time Pray once more and invite the Holy Spirit. 1. Invite people to get prayer if their families have caused them to feel unloved or unplaced, and offer encouragement that Jesus models a perfect family to us, and is fully welcoming and inclusive to all His children. 2. Offer prayer to those who feel like they haven’t experienced the true community that the Lord provides. 3. Offer prayer to those who wish to be built more into a dwelling place for the Lord.