Loving Your Distant Neighbors

Aug 30, 2020    Lori McDaniel    Romans 15
This week, we will hear from Lori McDaniel as she continues our LOVE BETTER series. Below is the discussion guide based on her message. There is a ton of information/questions as you dialogue in your group. Feel free to use what you wish to guide your discussion.

Thank you for all you do! Please know that we are praying for you as you lead your group!

TEXT - Romans 15

1. The message focused on “How can we love those distanced from us - people on another continent that speak a different language, eat different food, drive on a different side of the road?”
Is it even our responsibility as believers to love people so far away?
How do we love those who are believers?
How can we love those who are of a different religion and don’t know Christ?

2. Let’s look at the church in Rome that Paul wrote to. They were made up of Jews following Christ and Gentiles following Christ. Each group had their own traditions. Read Romans 14:1-9. What kind of differences did they have? How did Paul address their differences and encourage them?

3. Why is unity important in a church if they are to advance the kingdom of God not just locally, but also globally? In what ways does disunity threaten to disrupt a church from participating in God’s global mission?

4. Paul quotes verses from the Old Testament to support his mission cause of making Christ name known among the Gentiles. (See verses from Psalm and Isaiah quoted in Romans 15: 9, 10, 11, 12, 21) All of Scripture speaks to God’s mission of making His name known in all the earth. His mission has been given to the church. When you consider God’s mission of making His name known, what role do you see yourself playing?

5. Read 2 Cor 5:14-15: “For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.”

When you read this verse and consider such strong words like “Christ's love compels us” and “we are convinced” and “who no longer live for themselves but for Christ,” what stirs within you regarding your life and how you live it?

6. Paul says that he makes it his “ambition to preach Christ where He has not yet been named.” It’s hard to imagine places that have no gospel access. Today, where are these places or areas that have little to no gospel access? Who are these people? Determine one nation to pray for.

7. Paul inspired and pleaded with the church in Rome to do two things:
1) help him on his journey to Spain (15:24) and
2) strive with him in prayer (15:30).

• How are giving and praying a part of God’s mission of making His name known in all the earth?

• According to these verses, what should we pray concerning others hearing about Christ?

• What was Paul’s prayer in Romans 10:1?

• What did Paul ask to be prayed in Colossians 4:3?

• What did Jesus tell his disciples to pray? Matthew 9:38?