1999 James A. Fowler
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I. Biblical references
A. There are no direct references
to "interpersonal relationships"
B. The Bible is full of indirect
references to relationships between persons
of Eden - Adam and Eve - Gen. 2,3
commandments - Exod. 20:2-17
First four commandments - relationship with God
Last six commandments - relationships with other people
covenant commandments of love
Love God - Matt. 22:37-40
Love your neighbor as yourself - Rom. 13:8-10; Gal. 5:14
heaven and earth - Rev. 21:1-8
II. God's intent for interpersonal relationships.
A. The Trinity is the perfect model
for interpersonal relationships.
three persons of the Godhead interact in perfect interpersonal
perfect character of God is expressed interpersonally to the
other persons of the Godhead.
B. Ideal human interpersonal relationships
require the Divine character expressed through human behavior
C. The perfect and ideal community of
interpersonal relationships must be based on the common-unity
of God's presence and the expression of His character toward
III. Broken personal relationships attributable to
A. Selfishness - Gal. 5:19-21; Phil.
B. Lack of communication - Eph. 4:
IV. Differing personalities will tend to exhibit differing
SELF-ishness patterns that are detrimental
to their interpersonal relationships.
A. "S" pattern
to dominate and intimidate others
people to accomplish own objectives
of imperfection and weakness in others
B. "E" pattern
to compromise in order to be liked by others
talking; not a good listener
to exaggerate; less than truthful
C. "L" pattern
rather than active participants
won't address problems
by claiming inadequacy, lack of time or energy
D. "F" pattern
their way, procedure, technique is the only way
about their belief-system being "right"
more important than people
V. World-system contrary to God's intent for interpersonal
covetousness; "use people, love things"
VI. Proper interpersonal relationships will acknowledge,
accept and respect differing positional
A. God and man
is Lord - I Pet. 3:15
to all other interpersonal relationships
B. Husband and wife - Eph. 5:22-33; Col.
3:18,19; I Pet. 3:1-7
C. Parent and child - Exod. 20:12; Eph.
6:1-4; Col. 3:20,21
D. Employer and employee - Eph. 6:5-9;
Col. 3:22-25; I Pet. 2:18
E. Leadership and people
- I Tim. 3:1-10; 5:17-20; Titus 1:5-9; Heb. 13:17; I Pet. 5:1-4
- Rom. 13:1,5,7; I Pet. 2:13-17
VII. Unique context of interpersonal relationships within
A. Based upon personal relationship
with God in Christ - I Pet. 2:17
B. Christ in one Christian wants to relate
properly to Christ in another
C. Social community of interpersonal
relationships in Body of Christ.
D. Expression of divine action between
(fruit) - Gal. 5:22,23
(gifts) - Rom. 12:3-8; I Cor. 12; Eph. 4:11,12; I Pet. 4:10,11
VIII. Examples of traits of character expression of God
in interpersonal relationships of Christians.
A. love, compassion - Jn. 13:34,35;
I Cor. 13; Gal. 5:13; Col. 3:12,14; Heb. 13:1-3
B. honesty, integrity, trust, reliability,
faithfulness - Gal. 5:22,23; Eph. 4:15,25
C. justice, fairness - Matt. 23:23; James
D. humility, meekness - Matt. 23:12;
I Pet. 5:5,6;
E. patience - Col. 3:12; I Thess. 5:14;
endurance - I Pet. 2:20; 4:12-14
F. non-retaliatory - I Thesss. 5:15;
I Pet. 2:21-23; 3:9-12
G. deference, submission - Eph. 5:21;
Heb. 13:17; I Pet. 5:5
H. transparent, open, listener
I. encouragement - I Thess. 2:11,12;
4:18; 5:11,14; Heb. 3:13; 10:24,25
J. acceptance, non-judgmentalism - Matt.
7:1-3; Rom. 5:15,16; 14:1,3; 15:7
K. forgiveness, reconciliation - Matt.
5:23,24; Lk. 17:3-6; II Cor. 5:19; Eph. 4:32
L. peacemaker - Matt. 5:9; I Thess..
M. confession, sharing, vulnerability
- James 5:16
N. help the weak - Rom. 14:1; I Thess.
O. confrontation - Rom. 15:14; I Thess.
P. supportive; flexibility; accept differences,
Q. agree to disagree - Rom. 14:5; I Cor.