This is lesson 7 of 8 in Extraordinary Joy, a bible study on Philippians.
- Main Point of the Passage: Paul urged Christians in Philippi to experience the peace of God by submitting their thoughts and actions to Him.
- Main Point of the Lesson: We can experience the peace of God when we submit our thoughts and actions to Him.
- Main Application of the Lesson: Participants will identify and adopt habits of thinking and acting that lead to peace.
- Key Verses: Philippians 4:7, “And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”
- Word Studies: “worry” in Philippians 4:6
To prepare for this lesson, write your own answers to each of the questions below. You will share some of your answers with the group, but make it your goal to talk less than 20% of the Bible study time. Ask the questions, listen to your group, and let them carry the Bible study. You’ll be amazed.
If you plan to use the optional homework, you’ll need two or three volunteers each week. A few days before your Bible study, choose two volunteers and give each of them one of the following assignments. Tell them you’d like them to take 3-5 minutes to share their work with the group.
Once everyone in your group is sitting in a circle, say, “Here’s the first question. Everyone answers the first question, and it’s just for fun.” Then read the first question, pause, and listen to your group’s answers.
Smile Question: When you were a kid what was your favorite show?
Share Question: What are some of the healthy ways and unhealthy ways you cope when you’re feeling stressed?
Introduce the Passage: We can experience the peace of God when we submit our thoughts and actions to Him. That’s what Paul urged Christians to do in Philippians 4:2–9.
- Optional: Have a member of your group either recite the passage or give a detailed summary of the passage.
- Optional: Have a member of your group present their word study on the following word(s):
- worry in Philippians 4:6
Study Question: Let’s read Philippians 4:2–9 and answer this question: what are the characteristics of a mind submitted to God?
Possible answers include:
- Rejoicing in the Lord (v. 4)
- Graciousness (v. 5)
- Not worrying (v. 6)
- Prayer (v. 6)
- Thanksgiving (v. 6)
- Thinking about whatever is good (v. 8)
- Doing the things you have learned and observed from mature Christians (v. 9)
Connect-the-Dots Question: What might have made Paul or his readers feel worried?
Count-the-Cost Question: Tell about a time you experienced God’s peace by doing something Paul instructed in this passage.
Let’s-Do-It Question: What will you choose to do or think next time you feel worry?
Prayer: Father, thank you for allowing us to experience your peace. Teach us to submit our thoughts and our actions to you when we face situations that would cause us to worry. Amen.
Optional homework for next time: After your group discussion and prayer, distribute the attached pages to volunteers in preparation for your next Bible study.