Bible Reading for September 12-18

1 Corinthians 1

In what ways might Paul’s thanksgiving be a back-handed compliment: I thank God that he gives you grace … you need it! Do you think such a view is justified? Why or why not?

Given this introductory thanksgiving, what do you think we will find as we read through this letter?

In what ways are divisions still an issue for the church today? How do the divisions we face compare to those Paul describes?

What reasons do you have to boast in the Lord?

1 Corinthians 2

In what ways are simple messages more important for God’s kingdom than messages of “lofty speech?”

Why is “Jesus Christ and him crucified” the most important message you can know?

What does it mean to have the mind of Christ?

1 Corinthians 3

What does it take for each of us to be ready for “solid food” teaching, versus milk?

Paul says that multiple people work together to bring individuals to a place where God gives spiritual growth? How does this help affirm the part of ministry you are performing as having a much bigger scope than you working all be yourself?

Do you know that you are God’s temple and that God’s spirit dwells in you? How does this knowledge impact the way you live your life?

1 Corinthians 4

What does Paul mean when he says he is a fool for Christ’s sake?

In what ways have you had similar experiences to Paul: hungry, thirsty, poorly dressed, buffeted, homeless, reviled, persecuted, slandered, and the scum of the earth? Do you think people will sign up for this sort of discipleship? Why or why not?

Are you able to tell someone to imitate your life? If not, what do you need to do to get to that place?

1 Corinthians 5

How do you think the church today would react if they heard of a situation like Paul describes with a man and his father’s wife? Why do you think the Corinthian church tolerated this?

How does boasting within the church affect the entire church?

In what ways should we purge evil doers from the church today? Do you think doing so is a popular opinion? Why or why not?

Bible Readings for September 5-11

Acts 24

Why were the Jewish leaders so adamant to slander Paul, even when their accusations made little sense and were basically unsubstantiated?

What sort of actions do you take or safeguards do you have in place to ensure you have a clear conscience before God and man?

What do you think caused Felix to be alarmed while listening to Paul? To what degree do you think Felix was affected by his repeated conversations with Paul?

Acts 25

In what ways was Festus used to save the life of Paul?

Why is it that Felix in the previous chapter and Festus in the current one wanted to do the Jews a favor? Was this a successful political move? How else might we evaluate their actions?

What does it say about Paul’s actions that despite all the accusations Festus heard about Paul, Festus still is at a loss about what charges to bring against Paul?

Acts 26

How would you summarize Paul’s defense to King Agrippa?

How does Paul’s conversion story here compare to the previous stories we have read about Paul in Acts?

Why would it have been important for Paul to be obedient to the vision he faced while on the road to Damascus?

Acts 27

What would make Paul think the centurion guarding him would listen to Paul’s advice about sailing more than he would listen to the owner and pilot of the ship? What might this tell us about the rapport Paul had with those he was around?

Do you think perceptions changed about safe sailing times after the storm hit? Why do you think this is the case?

In what ways does Paul’s sharing food with the crew resemble a sharing of the Lord’s supper? Is this significant and if so, why?

Acts 28

Why do you think the Christians in Rome had heard nothing negative about Paul? What sort of credibility does this give Paul’s message and ministry?

How significant is Paul’s statement that the salvation of God has been sent to the Gentiles?

What do you think happened to Paul beyond what we have recorded in the book of Acts?