Sunday, November 08, 2020

Small Group Discussion Questions

James 3:13-18

  • James says that there are two different kinds of wisdom in this world: heavenly wisdom and worldly wisdom. How can you tell the difference, according to James? Why are they so easily confused?
  • What is the result of bitter envy and selfish ambition in verse 16? How have you experienced these results in your own life?
  • What does James mean when he says that “the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all, pure” in verse 17? Why would James say that purity is the first sign of wisdom? What are some other signs or manifestations of wisdom in verse 17? Take some time to define each of those terms.
  • In verse 18, James calls us to be peacemakers. This language echoes Jesus’ words in the Sermon on the Mount: “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” (Matthew 5:8-9) What is the relationship between purity of heart and peacemaking?
  • What does it mean to be a peacemaker in today’s world? What bold steps can you take this week to cultivate peace in your community? (Admitting our part in disunity? Creating space for healing and lament? Having that difficult conversation with humility?)
  • In what areas of your life do you need more heavenly wisdom? What can you do this week to seek this wisdom?

Note: Some of these questions were influenced by N. T. Wright’s book James: 9 Studies for Individuals and Groups