[Footsteps of Faith 11] Called to Serve
Questions for Group Discussion
Reflection: What aspect or lesson from last week’s study or lecture most encouraged or challenged you? Why?
Having made a personal commitment to follow Christ, each believer is prepared for His purposes with spiritual gifts that equip them to serve Christ. Exercising those gifts benefits the entire family of God and brings personal blessing. Begin your study by praying to see the many existing opportunities to exercise your unique combination of spiritual gifts, natural abilities, and learned skills in His service.
The concept of “gift” is communicated utilizing two different Greek words. A gift [Gk doron] is used of gifts presented to one another, to the poor, or to God, of gifts given in support of the temple, and of the freely given gift of God of salvation. A spiritual gift [Gk charisma— from the root charis meaning grace] is a supernatural ability given by God’s grace to each believer to employ in building up the body of Jesus Christ to the glory of God. Believers are exhorted not to neglect their spiritual gift and to rekindle afresh their spiritual gift by taking advantage of opportunities available to serve the body of Christ.
Use your spiritual gift to serve one another!
Read Romans 12:3-16 and Ephesians 4:7-13 in at least two translations.
1. According to Rom. 12:3 and Eph. 4:7, who is the giver of spiritual gifts?
What does that teach us about our attitude toward those gifts?
2. Reread Eph. 4:12–13. What is the purpose of spiritual gifts according to these verses?
A. What will be the result of their exercise?
B. What will be the result if we fail to exercise those gifts?
3. According to Rom. 12:3–16, what do you learn from this analogy about how the Body of Christ is intended to function? What warnings can you glean from the passage?
4. How might you connect the idea of Eph. 2:10 with an understanding of spiritual gifts?
5. List the specific gifts mentioned in the Romans and Ephesians passages.
6. Do you know which of these spiritual gifts you have been given?
A. If so, how did you discover your gifting? Circle the ones you think you may have.
B. What additional insights do you gain from any of the cross-references on gifts in the Optional Studies for Personal Enrichment?
7. What danger does Paul warn of in Rom. 12:3 and how does his analogy of the body help put the various gifts in perspective? (See also 1 Cor. 12:12–27) What is Paul’s overriding concern that was also a concern of Jesus? (See Eph. 4:3 and John 17)
8. What can you learn about the danger of competition and comparison from these verses?
What is destroyed when we compare? (2 Cor. 10:12)
9. Where are you tempted to compare yourself with another?
A. How might you heed Paul’s warning?
B. What additional thoughts do you gain from 2 Cor. 10:17–18?
10. Summarize in one or two sentences your present understanding of the significance of spiritual gifts and their purpose for the church.
11. What one insight or lesson do you hope to remember from your study of the gifts of God and your call to service? Write it below to share in class, and then write it on the journal page entitled “Lessons Along the Way” at the back of your study guide.
Choose one verse from this week’s lesson to memorize. Write it here and meditate on it.
How would you feel if a special costly gift you had given a dear friend was ignored and left unopened? Open His gift and experience the transcending joy of sharing His gifts with one another!
Optional Studies for Personal Enrichment
Called to Serve
God has personally called, gifted, equipped, and empowered each believer to serve one another in building up the body of Christ to the glory of God. Utilize your word-study tools to examine the meaning of the following words. List the insights you learn from the related scriptural cross-references. How do these insights enhance your personal understanding of the gifts of God and your responsibility to serve Him?
Gifted and Called to Serve
Gift [Matt. 2:11] doron
Acts 2:38; 8:20; 10:45
Gift [Rom. 12:6] charisma
1 Cor. 7:7
1 Cor. 12:31
1 Tim. 4:14
2 Tim. 1:6
1 Peter 4:10
Gifts Ps. 127:3
Life is a gift in which to serve Him!