Holiness is a common biblical ideal, but it seems to have fallen out of favor in today’s church. Why do you think that is? Does holiness still matter?
Why does God focus so much on holiness? Doesn’t God want us to have fun and enjoy life? It seems like being holy is about limiting all the “good” things in life. What do you think it means when the Bible says, “Be holy as I am holy? “ (1 Peter 1: 15-16)
As you think about holiness as Paul talks about it in Romans 8, as a life where the Spirit is living in you and where you are being led by the Spirit, what does that look like in your life? How are you making progress toward living a holy life? What might need to change to make that possible? Who or what could help you become more holy in your living?
How does using your spiritual gifts and bearing the fruit of the Spirit connect to living holy lives?
What Spiritual gifts do you have? (see the list of spiritual gifts in Romans 12:3-8, 1 Corinthians 12: 4-11, Ephesians 4:3-13, 1 Peter 4: 7-11) How are your gifts being used at Hope or more widely in our community? If you don’t know what your spiritual gifts are, see Pastor Heidi, Pastor Sally, or Pastor Rod.
As you look at how you are living your life right now, what fruit of the Spirit is evident in your life? How might you live more intentionally so that you might bear more spiritual fruit?
In Romans 8: 5-8, Paul divides all of humanity into 2 categories - those who live according to the sinful nature, and those who live according to the Spirit. In your own words, what are the characteristics of each group?
Paul, in Romans 8: 12-14 says that we have an “obligation” (8:12) What does Paul mean when he uses that word in connection to living by the Spirit? What are the negative and positive aspects of that obligation?
Do you pray regularly for the Spirit to come into your life? If so, how? if not, why?
Use the following prayer as a first step to praying for the Spirit to come into your life so that you can reorient yourself to the work the Spirit of God wants to do in your life.
Come Holy Ghost, our souls inspire and lighten with celestial fire. The blessed unction from above is comfort, life and fire of love. Anoint and cheer our soiled face with the abundance of Thy grace. Keep far our foes. Give peace at home. Where Thou Art guide, no ill can come. Teach us to know the Father - Son - and Thee, of both to be but One, that through the ages all along, this may be our endless song. Praise to thine eternal merit, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Amen
Bishop John Cosin, 15-94-1672