Hospitality is one of the chief Christian virtues. Offering hospitality reflects genuine Christian faith. There are many Biblical examples of those who opened their homes to be used by God. In this lesson we want to learn the meaning of opening our homes.
Read Romans 12:1. In the context of Romans, what did Paul mean by the expression “In view of God’s mercy”? (Ro5:6–8) How is God’s mercy the source and foundation of Christian hospitality? Read Romans 12:13. What does “hospitality” mean? Why is it important to show hospitality to God’s needy people? (1Co12:27; Jn13:34–35)
Read Hebrews 13:2. According to this verse, to whom should we not forget to show hospitality? What makes it difficult to do this? How did Abraham set a good example? (Ge18:1–8) How will Jesus bless those who show hospitality to strangers? (Mt25:34–36)
Read Acts 2:42–47. How did the early Christians in Jerusalem use their homes? How was this possible for them? (Ac2:4; Gal5:22–23) How did breaking bread in their homes especially contribute to the growth of their church? How does this network of fellowship in their homes show us a picture of a genuine Christian community?
Read Acts 16:14–15. How were Lydia and Paul different? After accepting the gospel, on what basis did she persuade him to come to her home? (16:15) What barriers did this break? What made it possible for them to accept each other? (Ro15:7; Col3:11) In light of this, how is Christian hospitality different from human hospitality?
Read 2 Kings 4:8–10. Describe the Shunammite woman. How did she regard Elisha, and what did she do for him? How did God bless her? (2Ki4:17) Consider some New Testament examples (Lk10:38; Ac12:12; 2Ti1:16). What are some things that make it challenging for us to open our homes to God’s servants? Why is it important to do so?
Read 3 John 5–8. What problem was John addressing in this letter? (9–10) How did he encourage Gaius? (5–6) For what purpose should we show hospitality to our gospel co-workers, even though we may not know them well (7–8)? Why is co-working so important in fighting for the truth?