A Look in the Mirror: A Family to Belong To

May 7, 2017 | Tom Swanson | 1 Timothy 3:14-16


Getting Acquainted

1) What are some of your family memories? In a minute or so can you share a favorite family time when you laughed together, worked together or enjoyed some experience together?

2) Families enjoy good times, but families also have ground rules! Can you share one of your family ground rules in regard to household chores or expected behavior?

Getting into the Bible

3) Ephesians 2:19 uses two images for the church. We are both fellow citizens and members of a household. Read Philippians 3:17-20 and 1 Peter 2:9-12 for other references to the idea of the Church as a nation with citizens. How are these two images different? How is the vocabulary of citizenship different than the terms used in families? Are there ways in which the images are alike? Is there one of the images that speaks more clearly to your heart?

4) In writing to Timothy and the church in Ephesus, Paul says he is writing so that they all would know how one ought to behave in the household of God (1 Timothy 3:15). The word behave speaks here of a way of life that goes with being part of a family. The word often implies the idea of a turning: turning back, turning around or overturning. Read Galatians 1:11-16. What did Paul turn from in his former life?

Read Ephesians 2:1-3. Where do all of us naturally live unless Christ intervenes? What kind of life are we to then turn to? Read 2 Corinthians 1:12, Hebrews 13:18, and 1 Peter 1:13-19.

Working it out in Life

5) As you think back on the message about believers being part of God’s family, was there something in particular that you wanted to discuss or share with the group?

6) Families have shared experiences. What are some of the shared experiences we might expect to see in the family of God? (Ephesians 3:14-19 might give you some ideas.) How do those shared experiences help us to function well as a church?

Digging Deeper

7) Seeing the church as a family is a wonderful thing. But like anything else, it can be misapplied. Are there ways in which the image of the church as family could actually have a negative impact? How can we at CrossWay Fellowship take steps to make sure that the family image does not exclude others?

8) CrossWay Fellowship rightly places a high value in living out some of the family values of caring for and accepting each other. What have others done for you that display those family values? Are there ways that you are – or that you can – display those family values?

Series title: A Look in the Mirror

Message 1: May 7, 2017

Message title: A Family to Belong To

Message Scripture: 1 Timothy 3:14-16

Message summary: We all want to belong. We join clubs, support causes and give our time and resources to organizations in part because we want to belong. Because God made us relational, those that come to him are placed in his Church. The Church, we are told, is like a family. Like a family, the Church gives us both the joy and responsibility of belonging to something bigger than ourselves. We’ll look in the mirror of God’s Word again this morning and see God’s family…and our family!


1) We join the family   Ephesians 2:17-19

2)  We live in the family   1 Timothy 3:14-16