God’s Word teaches that a husband is to “leave his father and mother” to enter into marriage. This introduces the concept of SACRIFICE into marriage (and all other relationships). Sacrificing our own selfish desires for the sake of another is not easy. We will fail. But, the perfect “sacrificer” and husband, Jesus, has forgiven us for such failure. He gives us the power to forgive one another and build stronger relationships. This Bible study will focus on the importance of SACRIFICE and FORGIVENESS in building strong and lasting relationships.
Any feedback or questions you have on this study are encouraged (either in a comment at the end or by way of an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org). I’d be glad to respond to you and I’d also like to use constructive feedback to improve this study for later usage.
Life in God’s Way … A Bible Study
Rev. Dr. Todd A. Biermann
LESSON 3: Simply SACRIFICIAL Relationships
Read Eph. 5:31
- What sacrifice does God expect of a man on his wedding day?
- Every relationship requires us to sacrifice our own selfish desires in order to focus on the needs of the other person. What things might a person have to sacrifice in order to focus in love on his/her spouse? What things might a person need to sacrifice in order to focus in love on any other relationship?
- How has selfishness and a refusal to sacrifice hurt a relationship in your life?
Read John 15:13
- How did Jesus show the greatest kind of love for us as His bride?
- What comfort do we have from Jesus when we fail to sacrifice for others as we should?
Read James 5:16
- What does this verse teach us to do when we know our selfishness has hurt our relationship with someone?
- How is saying “Will you, please, forgive me?” different from saying “I’m sorry.”?
Read Luke 17:3
- What are we to do if someone asks for our forgiveness after his/her selfishness has hurt us? What kind of sacrifice might be necessary in order for us to forgive someone?
- Although forgiveness is to be freely granted to the penitent, this doesn’t totally erase the hurt that has been caused. What should and should not be done to work toward reconciliation after forgiveness is granted?
Apply the insights from this lesson to your life.
- How has a refusal to sacrifice your own selfish desires been hurtful in your marriage? …in another relationship? …in your relationship with Jesus Christ?
- What steps can you take to resolve the separation caused by your selfish behavior?
- How can/has the daily practice of “confession and forgiveness” be/been beneficial to your marriage? …to your other relationships with people? …to your relationship with Jesus Christ?
Pray: Dear Lord Jesus, thank you for sacrificing yourself on the cross to pay for all my sins. Please forgive me for my selfish ways that have separated me from you and others around me. Help me to be reconciled with those I have hurt through my selfishness. Lead us to your renewal, peace and joy as we celebrate your forgiveness and follow your way of sacrificial love each day. Amen.