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Small Group Discussion Guide

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-Beware of the Dogs!-

Ice-Breakers:

Share an example of a man-made, legalistic rule you were taught to follow to be a ‘good Christian.’ When you realized this behavior wasn’t really a sin, how did that affect your view of God and/or Christianity?

Questions:

Read Philippians 3:2-3; Galatians 1:8; Isaiah 64:6

  • Why is Paul so upset with these Jews who were telling people they must be circumcised and obey the Old Testament laws in order to be saved?
  • What does Paul mean when he says: ‘we... put no confidence in the flesh’?

Read Philippians 3:3; Colossians 2:11

  • Paul says there’s a new kind of circumcision for New Testament believers, one that is done by Christ. How well are you doing in the area of ‘putting off the sinful nature’? Share a recent struggle you’ve had with the sin nature.

Read Romans 6:14; Galatians 3:1-3; Galatians 5:1-6

  • How does knowing you are no longer under law but under grace change everything in the Christian life? What does Paul say is the only thing that counts? How are you doing in the areas of faith and love?

Application:

Below are 7 ways people might boast in their own righteousness. Discuss the meaning of each of these and talk about the one you have struggled with the most in life.

RITUALISM: ‘Circumcised on the eighth day’ [communion, baptism, confirmation]

NATIONALISM: ‘Of the nation of Israel’ [relying on cultural heritage]

ELITISM: ‘Of the tribe of Benjamin’ [leaning on family background]

RELIGIONISM: ‘A Hebrew of Hebrews’ [Baptist, Methodist, Catholic]

ARISTICISM: ‘A Pharisee’ [elder, deacon, pastor’s kid]

ENTHUSIASM: ‘Persecuted the church’ [enthusiastic about church, religion]

LEGALISM: ‘legalistic righteousness, faultless’ [don’t drink, don’t dance, rock music]

  

 

  

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