5. Self-Discipline - Study Questions
This Study Guide is for the Self-Discipline article by Ken Boa. Read it first.
Appendix: Study Guide for MEN7/52 Leadership Series
MEN 7/52 is a men's ministry of bible.org. Our desire is to see all men become true followers of Jesus Christ 7 days a week/52 weeks a year.
The Men’s Bible Study Leadership Series is presented by bible.org to help you build and fortify men in preparation for their roles as leaders in their families, churches, communities, and workplaces.
It is a leadership series because no matter what age or station in life a man finds himself, he is called to lead. Leadership hates a vacuum. If a man of God doesn’t stand up and lead, then someone else will and the consequences can be drastic for generations.
It is also a discipleship series because building men’s leadership requires ongoing personal relationships with someone who will shepherd and mentor them over the long term. Just as Christ lived in a community of relationship with His disciples, preparing them to lead, so too must we if we are to grow and be effective.
There are sixteen lessons that are designed to be conducted over a thirty-two week period. Your group should meet weekly at a specific time and place. First, participants should be expected to read all of the Scripture verses thoroughly, on a daily basis, and be encouraged to meditate on them. Second, they should read the article carefully and look for aspects of it that impact them personally. Third, they should complete the discussion questions thoughtfully, completely, and honestly, and diligently address personal applications. Finally, they should be prepared to share their answers during your group sessions.
The articles used in this series are written by Dr. Kenneth Boa. Dr. Boa is engaged in a ministry of relational evangelism and discipleship, teaching, writing, and speaking. He holds a B.S. from Case Institute of Technology, a Th.M. from Dallas Theological Seminary, a Ph.D. from New York University, and a D.Phil. from the University of Oxford in England.
By the time your group has finished this series, relationships and spiritual bonds should have formed. Authentic spiritual interdependence will be experienced, and men will know they are not alone in being who and what God wants them to be. It will be critical for the group to either stay together for the next series, or to stay in close touch weekly to continue the shepherding experience and forming true Christian brotherhood.
Leadership Qualities: Self-Discipline
God requires and empowers His men to be self-disciplined.
Read “Leadership Qualities: Self-Discipline” by Dr. Ken Boa and listen to his audio message online.
- Why is self-discipline needed?
- How do people differ in the areas where they need to be self-disciplined?
- What is the definition of self-discipline?
- In order to have discipline, what else must we have that goes hand-in-hand?
Read 1 Corinthians 9:24-27
The Apostle Paul teaches the church in Corinth that they must be strict in their training if they want to win the ultimate prize. He exhorts them to do as he does. He disciplines his body so that he can endure the rigors of being a follower of Christ. He doesn’t want to be disqualified.
- In the various areas of your life (faith, health, academics, career, athletics, fitness, hobbies, etc.), list the ones where you engage in ongoing training.
- In which of these areas does your training require you to really stretch beyond your current capabilities?
- Please describe the spiritual, physical, emotional, and intellectual energy you expend in these areas of training.
- How do you feel during and after you have expended this energy?
- What are the results?
- Do you see yourself as spiritually self-disciplined? If not, why?
- Where do you need strict, ongoing training?
Read Jeremiah 18:1-12, Numbers 14:18, Psalm 103:8, 2 Peter 3:8-9.
One of the central themes of the Old Testament is the rise and fall of God’s people as they vacillate between obedience and disobedience. Our lives so often reflect these same blessings and consequences, and His requirement for our obedience. But, God gives us ample time and patience to remold ourselves in true repentance.
- Jeremiah refers to the marred pot. What areas of your life are causing you to be spiritually marred?
- How big do some of these blemishes seem to you?
- What does God expect us to do when we are marred by spiritual blemishes?
- In Numbers 14:18, Psalm 103:8, and 2 Peter 3:8-9, what do we discover about God’s patience with us?
Read 2 Timothy 1:7, Galatians 5:16-26.
God never gives us a task to do without equipping us first. He requires our repentance and our obedience if we are to enjoy eternal life with Him. No matter how hard it is to be transformed, God always gives us the means to be in His will.
- In 2 Timothy 1:7, what great gift has God given us and through whom is it given?
- How strong is this gift and what does it enable us to have?
- What do people do when they refuse this gift and what are the consequences?
- Read Galatians 5:22-23. What spiritual fruit needs to be cultivated in your life?
- According to Galatians 5:24-26, what do we need to do to belong to Christ and how are we empowered to do it?
- With the Spirit of power and self-discipline that resides in you, what changes will you make in your life beginning now?
(Proverbs 12:26, 18:24, 22:24-25, 1 Corinthians 15:33) We are known by the company we keep. We are shaped by the people who influence and are in relationship with us. We need to surround ourselves only with righteous people, even if it is only one.
- In order for us to be righteous, who must we choose as our friends?
- What happens when we choose friends who are not righteous?
- Who are your best friends?
- What is it about them that draws you to friendship?
- Do your friends have solid Godly character?
- What does Paul teach us in 1 Corinthians 15:33 about choosing the right friends?
- What will you do to cultivate strong relationships with men of Christlike character?
Memory Verse: 2 Timothy 1:7
For God did not give us a Spirit of fear but of power and love and self-control.