“Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry… you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander and filthy language from your lips.” (Colossians 3:5, 8)
“You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.” (1 John 4:4)
Orientation to the Material
This week Pastor Mike began his sermon talking about people having an addiction to chocolate or working out. These aren’t the traditional vices we normally think of people being “addicted” to. Have someone in your group act as the writer to compile a list on a piece of paper. Leaving out the traditional vices of alcohol, drugs and sex/pornography, how many addictions can you list as a group? Take a few minutes to brainstorm and see how long your list can be…
1. Have one person in your group read John 8:34 and 1 John 1:8. Being a “slave” to sin is another way of saying “I’m addicted…” If we are all slaves to sin, that means we are all addicts, including you. Is this hard for you to comprehend? Why or why not.
2. Read 1 John 1:8 again. Take that list you made earlier. Are there “addictions” on that list that you struggle with? For those that feel comfortable, share your struggle with the group.
3. Read Romans 7:14-19. Pastor Mike said this weekend that the first step was to “Admit I am powerless over sin-addiction…” Why is it important to admit that you are powerless and that you cannot control sin-addiction?
4. Have someone read Titus 3:5. Notice, in particular, Paul saying, “God saved, us, not because of righteous things we had done…” This weekend Pastor Mike said, “The key is not what you do, do, do. But what Christ has done, done, done.” Respond to this quote.
1. Read Romans 8:26. To overcome addiction to sin, according to Paul, who must we rely on? How can you make the Holy Spirit more central to help you through addiction? Discuss with your group
2. Read James 5:16. How can other trusted Christians help you overcome sin-addiction?
3. Read John 3:17-21. Confessing our sin is powerful. We, almost naturally, want to hide our sin and keep it in the darkness. But in the darkness, we sit alone and in shame, perpetuating addiction. Have someone in the group who feels comfortable share what it was like to finally confess sin and admit their weakness. Why do you think confession to each other is so freeing when it comes to addiction?
Have the group leader open in prayer for the small group. Then, leave a time for silence and let everyone in the group examine their heart for these “signature sins” Pastor Mike discussed this weekend. In silence, or if someone in the group feels comfortable praying out loud, repent of these sins to God. Ask his forgiveness knowing He is faithful to forgive. Let the small group leader then end the prayer time by praying for each member of the group, specifically that they may each find one or two people of like gender who can safely become their accountability partner. Close prayer time by thanking God for His forgiveness.