Week of June 24th • Discussion Guide
Ephesians 5:22-33 (ESV)
22 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.
25 Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, 26 that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, 27 so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. 28 In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, 30 because we are members of his body. 31 “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” 32 This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church. 33 However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.
Open your Bible and first pray. Ask the Holy Spirit to teach, correct, and train you (2 Timothy 3:16). As you’re reading, ask these questions:
- What is the context of the passage?
- Who is being talked to or about?
- What was said in the passages before and after it?
- What are the historical, cultural, and political things to take into consideration?
- What is happening in this passage?
- Is this a command, teaching, or a story?
- What things are emphasized, repeated, or related?
- What do you see about God?
- How does this talk about God the Father’s will for creation, culture, or your life?
- How does this talk about Jesus’ victory and accomplishments on our behalf?
- How does this talk about the power of the Holy Spirit for us or for His plan of redemption?
- What do you see about man?
- What do you see about yourself in this passage?
- What do you see about others?
- How does this passage speak to the younger brother? To the older brother? (Luke 15:11–32)
Spend some time reflecting. Ask yourself these questions, and discuss your thoughts:
- How do you think the author wants his audience to respond?
- Is this a passage of celebration, lament, correction…?
- What do you learn about God’s character?
- What attributes of God are more deeply affirmed as you read this?
- What attributes of God challenge you?
- What wrong beliefs about God and myself did I have?
- What challenges my worldview?
- What challenges the way I view my “neighbor”?
- How is Jesus the hero of this passage?
- In what ways can you move the passage away from being about yourself?
- How do you discover Jesus as the central figure?
After examining the passage, apply the text to your own life. Ask yourself these questions:
- How do I need to repent?
- What truths do I need to believe?
- What false beliefs must I turn from?
- What idols have I discovered while reading this?
- What can I do – empowered by the Holy Spirit – today to apply this passage?
- How does this passage affect my personal life?
- How does this passage affect the way I interact in community?
- How does this passage affect the way I engage my “neighbors”?
Pray through the passage and your application, asking God to change your heart and to change your life, based on the time you’ve spent in God’s Word with your community.
Pray for one another to be able to be obedient to God’s word for His glory and their joy.
After you finish, share what God taught you with at least one person—your roommate, your spouse, your kids, or your coworkers. Don't keep what God taught you to yourself.