1. Based on verses 16-17, how would you respond to another Christian who told you certain foods, drinks, and days were absolutely to be avoided or upheld, as an aspect of Christian living? For example, eating meat, drinking alcohol, and certain things that must be done or not done on Sundays. (Note the contrast in verse 17 of “shadow” and “substance”). Check out Romans 14:1-23.
2. What does it mean to be “holding fast to the head” in verse 19? How does this keep us from the abuses mentioned in verse 18? See 1 Corinthians 12: 12-27
3. In verses 20-23 we are told to avoid “decrees, such as ‘Do not handle, do not taste, do not touch!’” These prohibitions, while giving the appearance of wise religious practice, are shown to be useless in avoiding “fleshly indulgence” (verse 23). How would you advise a student at a Christian college who is confused about signing a Code of Conduct required by the college that excludes certain practices that the student feels free to engage in as a Christian (for example, moderate use of alcohol at family holiday meals)? See Romans 8:1-7 and ll Corinthians 3:17