Sundays | 9am & 10:30am | The Woodlands, TX

Ephesians 5:15-21

Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, 16 making the most of your time, because the days are evil. 17 So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. 18 And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit, 19 speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord; 20 always giving thanks for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God, even the Father; 21 and be subject to one another in the fear of Christ.

Do you live an intentional life? It’s hard, isn’t it? Our busy lives are, in many ways, reactive to the push and pull of our families, jobs, and even the world around us. We have been studying how to, as the Bible says, “walk” in the new life Jesus gave us by “putting on” the things that make us more like Him. In our passage today, Paul ties a nice bow on the things we’ve learned and tells us how to make the most of the time we’ve been given.—Ephesians 5:15-21

Many times, when you see a “therefore” in the Bible, you know you are about to read a “so what” passage. In other words, “If this is true, how does that apply to my life?” In this case, Paul seems to be saying, “HEADS UP – WATCH YOUR STEP” when he tells us to be careful about how we walk. He says we have limited precious time that should not be wasted. He warns us to keep our minds clear so the Spirit can direct us in community with God in worship and each other in fellowship.

We saw that the Holy Spirit Himself is intentional and active in shaping and guiding us toward becoming more Christlike.

Discussion Questions

Living Wisely in a Busy World:
1. Redeeming the Time: Verse 16 emphasizes “making the most of your time because the days are evil.” Some versions of the Bible say, “redeeming the time.” Which things cause you to waste time? How can we identify and avoid distractions to redeem our time for what truly matters? Is this just time management or something more?
2. Discerning God’s Will: Verse 17 encourages us to “understand what the will of the Lord is.” Share ways we can actively seek God’s will for our lives. What’s the difference between looking for God’s direction moment by moment versus seeking His long-range vision for our lives? Is one more important than the other?

Living with a Spirit-Filled Life:
1. Drunkenness vs. Holy Spirit: Verse 18 contrasts being “drunk with wine” with being “filled with the Spirit.” Is alcohol a problem for you or someone you love? Why did Paul call on alcohol as a counterexample to a Spirit-led life?
2. Expressing Faith Through Action: Verse 19 mentions “speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs.” Does anyone actually do that? How can we express our faith creatively and actively encourage one another?
3. Thankfulness in All Circumstances: Verse 20 encourages “giving thanks always for all things to God in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Can we really give thanks for all things? How can we cultivate a spirit of gratitude, even in difficult times?

Living in Submission and Harmony:
1. Submitting to One Another: Verse 21 discusses being “subject to one another in the fear of Christ.” Isn’t fear a negative word? What do fear and submission look like in healthy relationships, and how can we practice it effectively?
2. Overcoming Conflict: How can we apply the principles of submission, thanksgiving, and gratitude to navigate conflict and promote harmony within the church?
3. Taking Action: What practical steps can you take this week to live more wisely, be filled with the Spirit, and submit to God and one another?

- Encourage open and respectful dialogue, allowing diverse perspectives.
Maintain a safe space for sharing individual experiences and struggles.
- Use the verses as a springboard for broader discussion, not just answering the specific questions.
- End your session with plenty of time for prayer.
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