Wisdom in Loving Homosexuals

New Philly Hillside
Preached by Christian Lee on May 25, 2014, Sunday.
Duration: 88 minutes (audio)

Discussion Questions

PC: “I want to ask all the CG1’s to post a comment below right after your CG with feedback on what was good about your discussion time and how I can improve these discussion questions. This is a skill I’m still learning and I’d appreciate your help. Even if you are not a CG1, you can feel free to post a comment. If I like it, I may even add it so other CG’s later in the week can benefit from it. Thank you!”

 

A High View of Scripture

  1. Using three Scripture passages (Gen. 19; Lev. 18:22, 20:13; I Cor. 6:9-10), Pastor Christian argued that the Bible clearly teaches that homosexual acts or homosexual lust is sin (contrary to how some pro-homosexual advocates interpret the verses). As Christians, before we can relate to homosexuals in wisdom and love, why is it important that we start with a high view of Scripture?
  2.  
    Overcoming Homophobia

  3. What is homophobia? What are some examples of homophobia that you’ve seen?
  4. Do you think the church has been guilty of perpetuating homophobia? If so, in what ways and is there a need for the church to repent?
  5. How can Christians overcome homophobia?
  6.  
    Wisdom Toward Homosexuals

  7. Read this poem by Emily Dickinson (1263). Why did Pastor Christian mention this poem?

    Tell all the truth but tell it slant —
    Success in Circuit lies
    Too bright for our infirm Delight
    The Truth’s superb surprise
    As Lightning to the Children eased
    With explanation kind
    The Truth must dazzle gradually
    Or every man be blind

  8. Read John 8:1-11. For the woman caught in adultery, how did Jesus lead her to repentance (“Go now and leave your life of sin.”)?
  9. Why is it important to help homosexuals displace their identity in their sexual orientation?
  10. What did you think about Pastor Christian’s point about expanding our definition of masculinity and femininity? Why is this important?
  11.  
    Process Oriented Evangelism

  12. Martin Luther said: “Anything we look to more than we look to Christ for our sense of acceptability, joy, significance, hope, and security is by definition our god.” Some sure symptoms of idolatry are inordinate anxiety, anger, or discouragement when our idols are taken away. When such things are removed or lost, it doesn’t just make a person sad but it devastates them. How can sex and sexual orientation become an idol to Christians today?
  13. Discuss this quote from Tim Keller: “The gospel shows us that sexuality is supposed to reflect the self-giving of Christ. He gave himself, completely, without conditions. Consequently, we are not to seek intimacy while holding back the rest of our lives. If we give ourselves sexually, we are also to give ourselves legally, socially, and personally. Sex is to be shared only in a totally committed, permanent relationship of marriage.” [1]

 

Footnotes
  1. Tim Keller, Center Church, p. 49.

Comments

  1. Our CG was powerful last night. We only did 7 of the questions (1,2,4,6,7,8,9). It was a very natural flow of sharing and conversation because each question we went deeper and deeper into greater depth. For example, for number 6 someone mentioned the kindness of Christ. We then went deeper into what exactly is the kindness of Christ. How have you experienced repentance coming from God’s kindness? Basically, we went in the direction of how conversations went. The questions were great! They really led us to think deep. Unfortunately, we had to cut off our time because we went very long. It is easy to just go by the questions and finish on time, but we let the questions simmer a bit and led to other questions. Therefore, we could only go over some of the questions, which is ok. I think its really great to have the freedom to be flexible with the questions. These are great “base” questions. Something that is really powerful is the fact that the questions (question 6), led us into scripture. Personally, it is essential to go into the Word and go deep, especially in a group bible study.

    This is something really small but could be helpful: specific prayer points regarding the bible study. Although it is up to the leaders to lead that time and be led but he Spirit, I’m just curious what you would lead in prayer after this. Something I really loved (and sometimes didn’t like because of my flesh) last year in SG’s were the application and challenge points. We were challenged to practically engage in a certain way at the end of the bible study. This could be helpful as well. Again, this can be done by the leaders too.

    A very helpful thing to implement is maybe to guide people to the NP link on their phones right after to smart comment immediately after CG while thoughts are fresh and as things are shared.

  2. Joanna Oh says:

    Our CG did questions 1~4, 6~9. In general, discussions were good and all of us were open to share our own experiences growing up in different countries and backgrounds regards to relating to gay/lesbian people whom we knew. Our CG is pretty diverse in culture so we could compare how the views on homosexuals are different and what kind of bias exist but all had the same heart of compassion and desire to reach out in love and kindness. Naturally we end with time of prayer.

    The questions have been very helpful PC. I like that you tried to keep the questions simple and short. I’m glad we can choose ones we want to focus on cus 10 questions are too much to tackle in one CG so we skipped 2 and still went long. If we took our time and just let people talk and process it more than we would probably cover about 6~7 questions. I have more thinkers in my groups so they need time to think before sharing.

    I think this only affects Monday CGs but because we meet the day after sunday, I can’t give the questions ahead of time. Last year, we used to email the bible study ahead of CG meetings and it helped the discussions go much deeper and flowed alot better cus people came already chewing on the bible verses, sermon and thought about the questions already and they came prepared to share. Especially for more internal thinkers and processors, since they need time to think and before they can share. Mon CG can’t do much about this but Wed and Sat CG’s would benefit from it.

  3. Brady Miller says:

    I stared this discussion with the question: “Have you known anyone living this lifestyle? Has your attitude/interaction with them been loving to them?” From there we went over 1,3,5,6,7,8 and a modified 10, “how can we engage people who live this life in love and truth?”
    While talking about question 3 David brought up a great analogy of asking how we would treat a practicing Christian yoga master if he came to church. An interesting parallel.

    Usually I try to summarize questions to make it easier to convey; 1) “What defines what we see as right and wrong?” Then working around to get personal options before pointing to Scripture as being the ultimate touchstone for this, and the need for a high view of The Word. I like that the questions are really written out because it gives me a good feel of what is being asked and where the discussion should go.

  4. David Ahn says:

    We actually had our CG at a restaurant since it was the last time we would all be together (before different members leave), so the environment was a lot more relaxed compared to other CG’s. I share this because my feedback was affected accordingly.

    What was good:
    – People were very satisfied that this topic was addressed from the pulpit. I also felt the clear biblical teaching of why homosexuality was wrong brought clarity to some members.

    Some feedback:
    – I felt the questions reviewing the sermon seemed a little redundant. It seems good to review the sermon and its main points, but it’s a bit difficult to go through all the questions especially for such a big group. Consequently, it may take a lot of time to review the sermon rather than think collectively about how we can apply what we learned from the sermon.
    – I feel it would be good to add questions towards the end that are related to the topic but not necessarily covered in the sermon (perhaps applications points you wanted to cover during the sermon but couldn’t because of time constraints).

    Some things I did not included in the CG:
    – I ended the sermon by asking how the church should respond to legislation of same-sex marriage by giving the following options:
    1) Passively stand by
    2) Aggressively oppose
    3) Don’t know
    – After I asked the question, most of the CG members were unsure of what to do. Although this topic was not necessarily covered in the sermon, it challenged us as believers to deal with something that is directly related to us but we never were sure how to answer.

  5. Can i just say that our CG time has been such a blessing~! the questions are good but the fact that we are meeting to talk about/digest the wisdom imparted on Sundays has been so sweet~! today we started by asking everyone how they felt about this topic (how do you feel about homosexuality in general)- encouraged honesty – everyone gave really personal and deep answers – our CG is getting really intimate “family type atmosphere” with each other and we were being really raw with our thoughts and feelings. people mentioned they were happy to see that this topic was preached with wisdom – ***we were only able to go over questions 2 3 and 4 (our CG finds that we can only go through about 3-4 questions because of time, so Anna (cg2) and I meet up earlier to talk about which ones to talk about- we limit it to about 4 questions max sometimes we only have time for 3. we start off with the whole group talking about “mostly general questions” (30mins) then we break off into smaller groups and go more deeply into it (30mins) trying to give more people and opportunity to share- today we also went into role playing – imagine we just got a new cg member today and he/she was gay – what would you say, how would you act, what would you feel – also – imagine this gay person didn’t think homosexuality was a sin (just born this way) what would your response be and how would you go about this situation – this led to a great discussion time – to improve these discussion questions I think it would be good to add application points or practical points. *** Every CG we also have “family time” (sharing time -30mins- where one of the reserve leaders that Anna and I select beforehand share a testimony) we ended our CG today with “leadership building” (30mins) with Anna and I really building up and encouraging the leaders with wisdom and insight that we gained in our previous sg and cg experiences.

  6. Inoh Song says:

    I didn’t lead this this topic, but I think we can skip some of the basic comprehension questions in general unless the sermon was on some of the more rigorous subjects. Instead, we can have more in-depth questions that can keep the discussion going to see if people are actually processing what was taught.

  7. I loved the Questions and I felt like out of all the weeks, this week’s questions were the best! I found that they all flowed together. I didn’t have to change the order and I was able to lead a very organic discussion. This was also my first week where I was able to go through all the questions. Including the Emily Dickinson poem was clutch because what was casually mentioned during the sermon, we were able to more deeply consider and examine.

    One thing I really like is how the questions are categorized. For example, “high view of scripture”, “wisdom on..”. That really helps in leading the discussion and also makes the questions not look so intimidating for both the CG leader and for the members. Both the sermon topic and the discussion questions challenged us and opened each member to share diverse experiences. I thought it was great!

    The only thing that I would consider changing is maybe grouping the homophobia questions into one question. The three questions would be helpful for groups that maybe find that they struggle with homophobia but for my group, since we had little to no experience with homophobia, we were able to brainstorm on behalf of the church for the questions but we were a little disengaged. One question probably could have covered all three.

  8. These questions have been conducive to forming a culture of dynamic discussions during our CG meetings.

    1) They eliminate the need for the CG1/2 to be preachy from the get-go.
    – the questions, when facilitated thoughtfully and are met by a engaged/responsive group, naturally end up outlining the key points of the message and the best part is that it’s an interactive and collective journey that we go on together.

    2) We used questions 2~4, and that was already ample content to cover for about 40mins. Also, the best discussions have been provoked by truths like “Grace and Truth.” The ideas in this wisdom series that require the average CG-er to dig deeper and mine out the balance (sometimes paradoxically-nuanced revelations) of how the Fear of The Lord works itself out in any given situation of applying the word!

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