Into the Lesson
Before class begins, cluster the classroom chairs into groupings of two to five chairs. Pre-pare one slip of paper for each group with the phrase, Why We Do the Things We Do. Also write one of the following categories on each slip: mow the lawn; paint the house; get a college degree; clean and was the car; buy new clothes; take a family trip. (Feel free to shrink or expand the list based on class size.)
Tape one slip of paper underneath a chair in each group. Write Why We Do the Things We Do on the board or overhead.
At the beginning of class, ask each group to pick a “scribe” to take notes for their group and to be ready to report. At your signal each group will find the slip of paper taped under one of its chairs. They then will have only two minutes to create a list of the reasons or motivations for accomplishing the task written on their paper. After two minutes only the group with the longest list will be allowed to share its list with the class.
Make the transition to Bible study by saying, The kind of motivation and the strength of motivation we have for a task often determines what we do and how well we do it. God calls us to a task that is often difficult to accept or understand in a world that encourages us to be self-serving. God calls us to be servants as well as to be leaders. To accomplish that commission of being servant-leaders, we need to understand motivation: why Christians do (or should do)the things we do.”
Into the Word
The class will continue to work in their groups. Have one of your good readers read the entire text aloud; then give each team one of the following group assignments.
Team #1: Attitude of Unity (Philippians 2:1, 2).Paul begins this passage on servant-leadership with four “if-statements.” While the statements are rhetorical in nature, we know that Paul wants us to think about these truths. Examine verses 1 and 2; summarize your interpretation and application for the rest of the class.
Team #2: Attitude of Servant hood and of Christ(Philippians 2:3-5). Your group will address the theme “why we do the things we do.” Paul lists reasons why not to do things in church while also telling us what to do. Discover what Paul teaches about motivation for servant-leadership and give examples of why these actions/attitudes are or are not important.
Team #3: Christ’s Preexistence (Philippians2:6). Your task is to examine one portion of this hymn and interpret its significance for the rest of the class. Keep in mind the hymn’s theme of servant-leadership.
Team #4: Christ’s Incarnation (Philippians2:7. 8). Your task is to examine one portion of this hymn and interpret its significance for the rest of the class. Keep in mind the hymn’s theme of servant-leadership.
Team #5: Christ’s Exultation (Philippians 2:9-11). Your task is to examine one portion of this hymn and interpret its significance for the rest of the class. Keep in mind the hymn’s theme of servant-leadership.
Allow time for each group to report its conclusions. With five groups you will need to keep the reports somewhat brief. If you have a small class, double up some assignments.
Ask and discuss the following questions with the entire class:
1.Why and how is the concept of servant-leadership of value in the business world?
2.What do those “business world values” teach us about why servant-leadership is good for the church and for Christians—or is the teaching the other way around? Explain.
3. What project or class activity could we do together that demonstrate servant-leadership?.Following discussion of the last question, select an activity and assign a planning team; then make that activity happen in the near future.