1 Samuel 25; Ephesians 4:1-3; I Peter 3:9-12; Luke 17:3-4; Luke 23:34; James 5:16
Memory Text: Matthew 7:12 So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.
Why include “relationships” in a series of studies about emotions?
- Are relationships an emotion or the source of emotions?
- Clearly, people can incite negative emotions or prompt positive emotions.
David, Nabal and Abigail—
- Was David’s request fair or an ancient example of extortion–“protection money?”
- David admits his intent to take revenge was wrong and praises Abigail for preventing him taking things into his own hands.
- Lessons for those who are wronged?
- Is it OK to seek legal recourse when you are being or have been oppressed?
Peter’s admonition to return blessing for evil.
- Does God really hear the prayers of good people and ignore the prayers of the bad?
- What do you learn about David and about God from David’s kindness toward King Saul?
- What are the lessons here?
- E.g. A soft answer turns away anger.
- E.g. Respect generates respect.
- Let God take care of people changes.
- Does this mean human intervention, by law enforcement or political action or social action is inappropriate?
- C.f. Jacob benefitting at Laban’s expense.
- Must we forgive those who repent and ask for forgiveness?
- E.g. Abusing adult
- E.g. Assailant who leaves lasting physical or emotional damage
- Do we forgive only those who repent and ask for forgiveness?
- E.g. Jesus forgave those who killed him and we don’t read that they apologized.
- Forgiveness depends on us not the perpetrator.
- In what ways do those who forgive benefit? (Benefits to the one forgiven are more obviously true.)
- A question from the lesson quarterly: What should be recommended when forgiveness does not cause any change in abusive behavior?
Confess to one another. (James 5:16)
- What does James mean here?
- What hesitancies do you have about confession to others?
- Are there not appropriate boundaries, things that ought not to be shared?
- What of the Arab proverb, “Confession is good for the soul, but bad for the reputation?”
Build up one another.
- What prompts us to criticize and put others down?
- How might we address the cause of this behavior rather than just control or stifle the demeaning comments?