T-Life Guide
Work Your Faith | Week 4: Impartial Love | June 25 - July 01
Recap on Sunday's Sermon
For a full recap of Sunday's sermon with media, visit the Work Your Faith - Impartial Love page.
  • Main Point: Our faith in God is gauged by our love for others.
  • Key Verse: James 2:8
  • Scripture References: Matthew 22:36-40 James 2:1 James 2:8-10 John 13:34-35 James 2:12-13
Living the Rest of Your Week
Introduction
As we continue this week though our series on the book of James, we are discovering that we gauge our faith by how we work our faith. Genuine saving faith will result in actions of faith. As we open James 2, we are immediately confronted by a key implication of whether we are living out our faith in Jesus is how we treat others through "horizontal morality." Rather than thinking Christianity is all about "me and God," we must understand that love of God and love of others are inseparable in His mind and heart. Our faith in God is gauged by how we love others. We love others to glorify God. "What does love require of me?" is the determining question for the faithful follower of Jesus. Love considers others and sacrifices for others (just like Jesus did) above one's own selfish or self-seeking desires. As we live out this love before a watching world, we are glorifying God on the Earth and fulfilling His purposes and callings on our lives as His disciples.
Discussion Questions
  1. Last week we were challenged to commit to memory the high-stakes of temptation and as well as to pray in the midst of temptation a simple prayer for God's provision to meet the desire and need as compared to the thing into which we are being tempted. Share any follow up from this week and how you've experienced freedom or not in the midst of temptation.
  2. Talk about favoritism. What does it look like? How does it feel to be at the "head of the table" as compared to being in one of the lesser seats? How does it feel to be passed over because of favoritism? Share some stories from your own experience of that of others.
  3. Now, consider the words of God from James again in James 2:1, 8-10. In the eyes of God, what are the implications of favoritism? How does God connect this sin to faith and love? What are the practical implications of favoritism that deny someone love and destroy our capacity to live as disciples of Jesus?
  4. Vertical Morality (What is a sin and what isn't? How close can I get to sin without sinning?) vs. Horizontal Morality (Love one another as He has loved us. Sacrificially.)...Share the differences. How do these two ideas of right and wrong or what should or should not be done impact how we live our lives? What are some examples of both? How does God view them? Can you provide examples of Jesus' Horizontal Morality when it came to times he was confronted by the sins and lives of others?
Moving Forward
Horizontal Morality orients ourselves toward loving visible people to glorify the invisible God. As such, Horizontal Morality asks, "What does love require of me?" It asks it in each and every situation with each and every individual. In order to begin this process of reorienting ourselves towards glorifying God through loving and sacrificing for others, this week we are challenged to live out Love's requirements in our day to day living. In order to do this, come up with a daily strategy to love others. This could mean thinking of a specific situation or person that you have been meaning to engage with the love of Jesus. It could mean doing an act of care for a neighbor or someone you don't even like as a means to glorify God. It could mean finding a co-worker whom you fundamentally disagree with in the realm of belief, values, and morality and to intentionally find ways to sacrificially love and serve them. Commit to pray this week for God's insights into your own "horizontal morality" and to be given opportunities to live it out before others this week to His glory. Share what God is speaking to your heart with others and ask their prayers and accountability to act on His voice.
The Word Speaking Life
If you really keep the royal law found in Scripture, "Love your neighbor as yourself," you are doing right. -James 2:8
Questions
If you have questions about this guide, contact our Empowering Team member, Jacob Peterson, at jacob@goyfc.org.
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