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Spiritual Growth Agendas

Chris Brown on Larry King
Anger Self Control Sin


Main Point of Discussion: Because we all have a sinful nature, we all have the potential to act in terrible ways. That’s why it is critical as Christians to defeat the inclinations of our flesh through the power of the Holy Spirit

The Background:
R&B singer Chris Brown pleaded guilty to felony assault after a widely publicized incident with his former girlfriend, Rihanna. A second felony charge of making criminal threats was dropped.

On August 25, 2009 Brown was sentenced to five years probation and six months of community labor.

Brown breaks his silence to CNN's Larry King in his first TV interview since assaulting Rihanna.

He talks about what happened the night of the assault, the infamous photo of a battered Rihanna and his feelings for her today.

Introducing the Clip:
Today I want to show you a clip from the interview with Chris Brown on
Larry King Live. As we watch it, pay close attention to Brown’s tone and wording when he talks about the incident.

Clip: http://www.cnn.com/2009/SHOWBIZ/Music/09/03/lkl.chris.brown/index.html#cnnSTCVideo



Key Interview Dialogue:
    King: What do you think caused you to be violent? I mean, you have to think about it. Everybody -- we all think about ourselves -- why did I lose my temper, why did I get angry over this?

    Brown: I mean, that's relationships. I wouldn't say it's O.K. I think, just in relationships in general, there's chances where you lose your temper or like arguments get heated or whatever the case may be. I'm not saying domestic violence is a part of relationships.

    I feel like that we're young. We're both young. So nobody taught us how to love one another. Nobody taught us a book on how to control our emotions or our anger. I'm not trying to fall on the fact that I'm young. I'm just saying it's a lot of stuff that I wish I could have changed that night.

    King: When you hear about all the things that the police and the reports say you did, how do you react to that?

    Brown: I'll just look at it and like, "Wow, like, I'm in shock. Because, first of all, that's not who I am as a person and that's not who I promise I want to be.

    King: Do you remember doing it?

    Brown: No.

    King: You don't remember doing it?

    Brown: I don't. It's like it's crazy to me.

    King: You're a great dancer, a great singer, you're popular, you're known all over the world. Do you ever say to yourself I screwed up?

    Brown: Every day. Every day. I think this is probably -- like I said, it's probably one of the worst moments of my life. And I always wish like I could take it back. And every day, it's just something that sticks in my mind. And I've said countless times how sorry I am to Rihanna, and I just accepted full responsibility. But it's just one of those things I wish I could have relived and just handled totally different.
The full interview script can be found at this link:
http://www.cnn.com/2009/SHOWBIZ/Music/09/03/lkl.chris.brown/index.html

Transitional Statement:
You probably noticed several interesting things during the interview, one of the most prominent to me is the connection to something that is true for all of us in this room- which is the fact that we all have a side to us we’d rather not admit to having.


Divide into Small Groups:
Let’s go ahead and split up into our discussion groups, and then afterward we’ll come back together for a final word.

CLICK HERE for a quick training article on how to maximize your small groups using our small group format—a great resource to equip your small group leaders.

Discussion Questions:

  1. AROUND THE CIRCLE: Before we begin, tell everyone your name and what was your reaction when the story of Brown’s assault broke?

  2. ASK A FEW: Did you automatically feel like he was guilty? Why or why not?

  3. ASK A FEW: Do you think Rihanna shares any blame? If so, how much?

  4. ASK A FEW: What did you notice about his tone and body language? (Examples- remorse? denial? humility?)

  5. ASK A FEW: Why do you think he didn’t want to talk about the incident?

  6. ASK A FEW: Why do you think he can’t remember what happened?

  7. ASK A FEW: Do you agree or disagree with Brown’s answer to King’s question?

    • King: What do you think caused you to be violent? I mean, you have to think about it. Everybody -- we all think about ourselves -- why did I lose my temper, why did I get angry over this?

      Brown: I mean, that's relationships. I wouldn't say it's O.K. I think, just in relationships in general, there's chances where you lose your temper or like arguments get heated or whatever the case may be.

  8. ASK A FEW: What do you think causes people to react and behave in terrible ways?

  9. Read the following passage:

      Galatians 5:16-25 (NLT)

      So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves. The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions. When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God.

      But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!

      Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there. Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives.

  10. ASK SOMEONE: According to this passage, what is at the root of our bad behavior?

  11. ASK A FEW: Why is our sinful nature such a powerful force? (Leaders – All humans are born as sinners and we start sinning very early in life. Ever seen a 2 year old not want to share his toys? That’s because his sin nature is at work. In other words, sinning is as natural and easy to us as breathing. We don’t have to think to breathe, nor do we have to think to sin. It just comes to us naturally. That’s why the sin nature is such a powerful force.)

  12. ASK A FEW: Where did our sinful nature come from? (i.e. we were born with it as a result of the Fall.)

  13. ASK A FEW: Do you think the potential to commit felony abuse is inside you? Why or why not?

  14. ASK A FEW: In the clip, Chris Brown said, “Nobody taught us a book on how to control our emotions or our anger.” Do you think we can learn to totally control our sinful nature in our own power? Why or why not?

  15. ASK A FEW: How would the world have responded if Chris Brown said he was violent because of his sinful nature?

  16. ASK A FEW: When have you felt the battle between the Holy Spirit and your sinful nature?

  17. ASK A FEW: Does it initially feel good when we give into our sinful nature?

  18. ASK A FEW: When we do, will there always be regret later? Why or why not?

  19. ASK A FEW: According to the passage, what is one motivation for not following our sinful nature? (“Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God.”)

  20. ASK A FEW: What counsel does Paul give us for fighting our flesh? (allow the Holy Spirit to control us)

  21. ASK A FEW: What are some specific ways we can fight our sinful nature and not end up with heavy regret and consequences?

Wrap Up:
Someone once asked the famous preacher Charles Spurgeon about what determines which nature will prevail—the Spirit or the flesh. The person described it as an all-out fight between two dogs. Which one will win? Spurgeon said, “The one you feed.” When we go places we know are tempting or look at things we know are destructive, we feed the sinful nature. However, when we pray, meditate on the Bible, etc., you strengthen the power of the Spirit in you. Let’s take a minute and reflect on our spiritual ‘diet’ to make sure we’re not setting ourselves up for defeat.


Give the students a few minutes to think, then give them time in silence to pray for help in not giving into the sinful nature.

After a few minutes, close in prayer and invite people to trust Christ.

Close in Prayer

Written by Lane Palmer

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