Use one or both of these questions to introduce the lesson.
1. What does it mean to be “mature” or “grown up”?
2. What are the similarities and differences of being clever and being wise?
Read Colossians 1:24-27.
1. In prison, Paul’s suffering and affliction were key components to his knowing Christ more completely and presenting the Word of God in its fullness to the church. Discuss how hardship and pain give us greater understanding of Jesus and help us mature in our faith. Share examples from your life when God has grown you the most through suffering and difficulties.
2. The word mystery is used twice in this section and three times in our reading. Through the text, discover and discuss together what was kept secret for ages and generations and what it means. Is the promise of discovering God’s plan only for a select group of privileged people, or do you think it’s more inclusive than that?
3. We hope for lots of things, don’t we? Talk about the places you put your hope. The word glory (doxa in Greek) in verse 27 is about the eternal future promised to Christ’s followers at the Savior’s second coming. For you, is Heaven a hope or a certainty?
Read Colossians 1:28, 29.
4. Great books, revolutionary diets or workouts, our children’s successes, and even life-changing purchases are some of the things we might proclaim daily through social media. Talk about what it means to proclaim Christ and to admonish and teach others with all wisdom for eternal purposes. What are practical ways we can do this in our everyday lives?
5. Maybe the last question threw you for a loop. How do we proclaim, admonish, and teach people about Christ with all wisdom? Read James 1:5 and discuss.
Read Colossians 2:1-5.
6. What was Paul’s ultimate goal for the Colossian believers according to verses 2 and 3? Discuss what encouraging, unified love has to do with understanding the full riches of Jesus Christ.
7. How should Christians deal with false doctrine? Read 2 Peter 1:16-21. Have you ever heard or been influenced by someone’s false notions and fine-sounding arguments regarding the character of God or the gospel of Christ? Discuss how we can identify and dispel false teaching among the body of believers.
Conclude your group time with prayer, using the following as a guide. Lord, grow us up in the fullness and truth of the gospel of Christ. Where we lack wisdom, Holy Spirit, prompt us to seek God. Let us so fully know you, Jesus, in our suffering that we one day will celebrate with you in our resurrection. Amen.