Study Guide


Everyday Theology - Romans 8:1-4 - Study Guide

Posted by Kim Stiver on

Everyday Theology Sermon Series

Throughout the Everyday Theology sermon series, we will explore foundational principles of the Christian faith in chapters 5-8 of the book of Romans. Rather than giving us only knowledge about God and His plan for restoring our relationship with Him through the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross, we will learn from Paul what it means to have more of God Himself and the life Jesus died to give us — right now and for eternity. 

Each week, your group will watch a brief video teaching from one of the Cornerstone pastors, complementing the corresponding sermon for the week. The study guide includes a warm-up question designed to help your group focus on the primary Scripture passage and its theological implications. The discussion section will jump into the meaning and impact of Paul’s major points. We’ll wrap things up with questions that explore how the passage applies to us today as followers of Jesus in a modern and chaotic world. For more info and ideas on leading your group, visit our sermon series resource page.

Please also encourage your group members to check out Daily Steps, Cornerstone's companion devotional guide for individual reflection, prayer, and meditation on related Scripture selections throughout the week!


This week we recommend that you begin your group time together in prayer and then watching the study guide video before you discuss the warm-up question. 

Watch this week’s video teaching from Kim Stiver, one of Cornerstone’s community pastors.


In the video you just watched, Kim suggested that your group spend some time dreaming together about what your life would be like, or how it would change if you could experience a complete release from all the negative emotions related to your past decisions, sins, or mistakes. 

Take a few moments to share with the group what it would be like for you to feel 100% free to pursue God’s best for your life. Answer one or more of the following questions as you feel comfortable doing so.

  • Are you living as freely and fully as a forgiven son or daughter of the King of the Universe? 
  • What do you think God’s best for your life might be? Is it different than the life you’re living now?
  • Is there something more you think He might be calling you to pursue?


Read Romans 8:1-4 in four different translations of the Bible — ESV, TPT, NLT, and The Message. (Leader Tip: Click the link to see all four versions in parallel.)

The eighth chapter of Romans has been called the greatest chapter in the Bible by many theologians and pastors for its comprehensive presentation of what it means to believe in Jesus and live abundantly through the power of the Holy Spirit. Paul, the author of Romans, begins the first verse of this amazing chapter with a forceful conclusion. In his sermon message, Worship Pastor John Orozco said, “Paul is not referring to something coming. He means now. Not eventually, but right now.”

  • What do Paul’s opening words of “therefore now” or “case closed” signify and why do you think he starts off the chapter that way? What does he want us to know that is already determined and finalized? 

  • Read Romans 7:21-25 in the NLT. How does this passage compare Paul’s life and struggles to the good news he declares in Romans 8:1-4? 

  • Paul frequently talked about his personal struggles in his letters to the churches. Read 1 Timothy 1:15-16 and 1 Corinthians 15:9. How does it help you in your walk with Jesus to know how much Paul struggled himself?

In the video, we learn about the difference between condemnation and conviction. Kim said, “The source of our doubts and misunderstandings is often traced back to our confusion between condemnation and conviction. Conviction is what the Holy Spirit stirs in us when we’ve done something wrong and haven’t asked for forgiveness yet from God or from the people we’ve hurt in the process. Condemnation is what Satan uses to make us feel hopeless, chained in guilt, and unable to move past our sins and into the freedom Jesus gives us. Satan is the master guilt tripper. Jesus is the master freedom maker.” 

  • Verse 1 has been called by some, "the most beautiful verse in the Bible." In your own words, what makes this verse so powerful? What does the good news it offers mean to you personally?

  • If Jesus came to not only take our punishment for us, but to also give us the freedom to live in the Spirit, why do you think we struggle so much with feeling guilt over sins we’ve acknowledged and asked God to forgive us for? 

  • In the past, what are some obstacles that have kept you chained to guilt and unable to live in the freedom of forgiveness? What helped you move forward to forgive yourself and others? 

  • Share a time when you’ve experienced healing and wholeness following the Holy Spirit’s conviction on your heart about something. 

In verses 2-4, we learn that only the Holy Spirit can give us the power to be obedient to God and triumph over sin. We are not able to fulfill the law — in other words, live perfectly without sinning — so Jesus steps in for us to not only take the punishment we deserve but also enable us to live freely to pursue God’s best for our lives. 

  • What is it about following rules and regulations that sometimes makes us feel more comfortable and safe than trusting in the Holy Spirit to guide us? 

  • Why do you think so many people fall into the trap of legalism and the faulty thinking that we have a role in our own forgiveness?

  • Have you ever felt as though you needed to do something for God or receive punishment before you could be truly forgiven? What was it like to feel that way? 

The video closes with a list of four freedoms that we are promised by Romans 8:1-4. Freedom from God judging you, people judging you, the law judging you, and you judging yourself. 

  • Which one of the four freedoms means the most to you personally?

  • Which is more difficult for you — forgiving yourself or forgiving others? Why? 

  • How does confessing our sins to one another help us heal and move forward in the freedom of Jesus? What can we do to make ourselves more gracious when hearing the confession of a friend or someone who’s wronged us?

  • In the next week, is there something you want to do related to these freedoms that you have not done before? Share with the group some ways they can pray for you with your next steps. 

Everyone has a next step with Jesus...What's yours?

Spend Time Alone with God

Daily Steps is a weekly devotional message designed as a companion to this sermon study guide. You will be guided as you spend time with God through personal reflection, Scripture readings, and prayer prompts. 


Get Your Worship On!

Do you love the worship music at Cornerstone? Then our new worship YouTube channel is for you! Enjoy all your favorites now featuring the worship teams from all of our campuses!

CF Worship Channel on YouTube


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