NASHVILLE (BP) — This weekly Bible study appears in Baptist Press in a partnership with LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention. Through its Leadership and Adult Publishing team, LifeWay publishes Sunday School curricula and additional resources for all age groups.
This week’s Bible study is adapted from the Explore the Bible curriculum.
Bible Passage: Ephesians 5:22 – 6:4
— What makes the family such an important institution in the sharing of the Gospel?
— How can every believer — married or single, young or old — apply Paul’s commands to the family?
Food for thought:
Some things just go in one ear and out the other: Keep your arms and hands inside the car when riding a roller coaster. Wear a helmet. Bundle up before going outside.
We may have no desire to ride a roller coaster, get on a bicycle, or go outside to play in the snow, so we know these directions are for someone else. We may even rationalize not heeding the directives since we have ridden the coaster before, are just riding in our neighborhood, or will only be outside just long enough to collect snow to make ice cream. The directive just doesn’t apply to us.
In his Letter to the Ephesians, Paul called on wives to submit, husbands to love, children to obey and fathers to lovingly train their children. These directives defined how the Christian family was to function. His commands affirmed the dignity and value of the wife and the husband while also recognizing the different God-ordained roles to be played within a marriage. He also affirmed the role of parents in nurturing their children without minimizing the child’s responsibility for his or her actions.
Some of us may think these directives have nothing to do with us. We may be single or single again. We may have released our kids on their own recognizance, or may already feel like we have this down. Before we push this passage to the side, note that Paul built these directives by introducing the idea of mutual submission in verse 21. This mutual submission was one of the outcomes of being filled by the Spirit (v. 18). Submission is our yielding to the Spirit and God’s Word, which is needed by all of us. No matter the season of life, believers can joyfully submit to Christ, knowing His authority over us is always according to God’s will and in our best interest.
Explore the Bible
Explore the Bible is an ongoing Bible study curriculum that helps groups dig into the key truths of each Bible book, while keeping the group on pace to study through the Bible books in a systematic way. More information can be found at LifeWay.com/ExploreTheBible.