This week during Love, Sex and Dating, Pastor Tim will be preaching about sex. This subject matter is a PG-13 rating, so be mindful of how you approach this in your group. If your group is mostly singles, we’ll be giving the framework of biblical sexuality. In the digging deeper section we’ll be discussing lust and how to escape its clutches. Feel free to use this guide any way that will help your group. Don’t feel like you have to go through all the questions, but really take the time to connect and love on your group.
[Q] What was the worst date you’ve ever experienced?
[Q] If you’re comfortable, share with the group your first kiss. Was that a good experience or a slightly awkward one.
These questions are ways to review the message. Feel free to let the discussion go wherever it needs to go.
[Q] What struck you about this Sunday’s message?
[Q] List some examples where you’ve experienced sex as a god, as gross or as a gift?
Apply the Bible
[Q] In the city of Corinth there was a prevailing belief that what you did with your body was just with your body, but what you did with your spirit was separate. Paul, writing from a Jewish perspective, is teaching that there is no such division. Body and soul are connected. Which is why in verse 14 he writes that Jesus was resurrected from the dead and we too will be resurrected. Because of the Resurrection, how does God view our bodies?
Spirituality cannot be divorced from our bodies. Our future hope is that we, as well as the entire created order, will experience Resurrection. Therefore, our bodies will be redeemed. There is a false teaching that we will spend eternity as disembodied spirits floating around like ghosts. However, the Old and New Testament teaches that the body is good, the body is also what is being redeemed which is why sexuality is so important to Christian well-being. Our bodies are part of God’s redemption plan.
[Q] According to verse 16, how is the spirituality linked to sex?
Sex functions as a type of spiritual cement. It is not just like any physical activity like sleeping or eating. It is actually designed to bond you with another person. Not just emotionally or physically but also spiritually. When you are spiritually bonded together, it is not easily broken apart.
This is actually an earlier reference to Genesis 2: 24. Where man and woman would come together, the two would become one. For singles, remember it says that two would become one, not two halves would become one. Help remind singles that they are fully whole and complete people in the sight of God and do not need to be completed by another person.
When we have sex before marriage, and with multiple partners we find ourselves linked to people at the level of soul and spirit. For many people, these can be very painful and bring up great guilt and regret. When having this conversation with your group be very careful and kind. Encourage your group to know that God has called them for more. God brings forgiveness and mercy and will restore and redeem us from sin and its effects.
[Q] Why in verse 18, does sexual sin mean sinning against your own body?
If we are joined with Christ, when we commit sexual sins we are literally bringing Jesus into that sin. Our bodies cannot be joined with Jesus and with sexual immorality. While Jesus forgives all our sin, and all sin is the same, not all of the consequences of sin are the same. When we sin sexually and join ourselves with multiple people, we are gluing our spirits to several people which is a source of pain and heartache.
[Q] In the Scriptures, the Temple has believed it was where God dwelled. The Temple was where heaven and earth intersected. But now, because of Jesus, it says that Christians are the Temple of the Holy Spirit. What does it mean that your body is a Temple? How does sexual sin pollute the Temple?
For Christians, the Holy Spirit now dwells within us. This is another aspect that when we sin WITH our bodies, that through Christ is dedicated to Him, we bring Jesus directly into our sin. Jesus can still heal and redeem our sexual brokenness, but the consequences to our body and soul can go deep. While there are a myriad of physical consequences, the spiritual consequences like being spiritually joined with another, sexual memories, and increased openness to further temptation.
[Q] What is Paul’s recommendation when it comes with sexual temptation?
RUN!! Don’t try to argue against it, but flee! Get away from sexual temptation. The struggle is is that we live in a sex-saturated culture (similar to the Corinthians). Yet the advice Paul has for them and us is to cut and run. Paul is probably thinking about the story in Genesis 39: 10-12. Where Joseph is being seduced by Potiphar’s wife and runs away leaving his clothes behind.
[Q] Because sexuality is such an incredible gift from God, Satan wants to do whatever it takes to corrupt it. Jesus reminds us that we were bought with a price, not just our souls but our actual bodies. Therefore, we can honor God with our bodies. How can you honor God with your body?
One aspect of our Christian discipleship that is often neglected is caring for our bodies. Sometimes we are so focused on study and learned that we don’t eat right or exercise. While this is a side discussion, part of being a fully complete disciple is that we care for our bodies, our souls (emotional health) and our spirits (biblical/theological).
We also honor God with our bodies by being faithful to our wives and husbands if you are married. If you are single, your body belongs to Christ. And you must conduct yourself in a worthy manner as a single to honor God with your body. To live a life that is sexually pure.
God is a God of redemption. This discussion can be very difficult for some in your group. Take time to pray for one another. Have your group share honestly their struggles for sexual purity if you feel comfortable. Have the group pray over those that need a fresh touch from God to experience and feel His forgiveness and grace.
Chance to Serve
Consider serving during Parents Night Out. This event is hosted once a month at our Mountainside and Parsippany campuses. During this event parents can drop their kids off for three hours of child care. Take the time to help bless our special needs parents. Serve on your own or serve with your group. For other opportunities check out the Liquid serve site.
Read Matthew 5: 27-30
[Q] Is there a difference between lust and attraction? What do you think it is?
Being attracted to someone is natural. In fact, God made us to be attracted to one another. This is normal and healthy. Song of Songs is a celebration of physical attraction and biblical sexuality. Lust, on the other hand, involves a choice and an act of will. Whenever we experience physical attraction (normal), but they use fantasy or pornography to gratify our sinful desires it turns into lust. Often, people will speak about their “uncontrollable” lust, but Scripture is clear that we are to be self-controlled. While we may experience and celebrate physical attraction, we must be on guard that it doesn’t become lust.
[Q] Jesus starts off by saying, “You’ve heard it said,” where have people heard this? How did Jesus expand this teaching?
Jesus is quoting the 10 commandments. Jesus then takes it from the external to the heart. The heart is where all sin starts. Jesus came to die so that we could have pure hearts, therefore Jesus had to change the focus from the externals which lead to legalism to the heart where real life change can take place.
[Q] What do you think Jesus means in verses 29-30?
This is a radical teaching. Very few people will actually take these verses literally. Most understand that Jesus, the Master teacher, is using hyperbole and exaggeration to make a point.
[Q] What could vs. 29 to 30 look like? How can it be visible for others?
In Jesus teaching, He is making it clear that to protect against sin may require that Christ-followers not act the same as the world. This will lead to Christians sticking out in visible ways. Whether it is not seeing certain movies, reading certain books, or participating in certain activities that the world deems as normal and “healthy outlets” Christians may look as foolish as someone walking around without limbs and eyes. The heart must be protected that is why boundaries are essential.
[Q] A woman from our church wrote these words on her computer “As for me and my mouse, we will serve the Lord.” This was there as a reminder to her kids and the family that the choices we make online will honor God. What are some ways that you can protect your hearts from sexual sin?
Don’t be afraid to get really practical here. Having signs in your home like the one above will help people think about what they are doing. When friends come over, they are a reminder of what you and your family are about. Putting protective software in place on your computer and phones as well as having other believers in your life to hold you accountable are all great resources for you to tap into.
[Q] Read 1 Corinthians 10: 13. Why is this good news when we face temptation?
Here God promises to give us a way out whenever we experience temptation. How can you train yourselves to look for those ways out? This is a good follow up question to keep the discussion going.