Teachers Study: "desires"
Our desires must be focused on Him: Christ our Lord. We must feel the anticipation and the excitement to be with and in Him, so that we not only hear His Word; but we do His Word, the Word of God. So if we become stuck in our anxious thoughts, confusion, or the stressed out urgency of life, we stop and get our focus right! Pray that the Holy Sprit intercedes in you and removes the disruptions. Allow yourself to receive His comfort and grace. Remember it is not anything we do or effort on our part, we are only to receive what Christ our Lord gives us. And to receive, we need to make sure stuff that gets in the way, are out of the way.
Augustine, a "Catholic Saint," was one of the foremost philosophers and theologians of early Christianity. While serving (396-430) as bishop of Hippo Regius, the leading figure in the church, he was perhaps the greatest Christian thinker of all time and the one person with the biggest influence in theology for Catholics and Protestants, even more than the reformers. He also was the main person who influenced the "western world view," our cultural and identity both in Europe and the U.S.!
Augustine fought vigorously against his bad habits and sin nature, so he can grow deeper in our Lord. Until he learned a lesson from a small child, which he felt was the Word of God. Let Augustine's influence keep influencing you!
Remember to begin in prayer!
· Prayer 5 min
· Pick one of the options 5-10 min
· Read lesson and bible passages 10-15min
· Discussion groups 15-30 min
· Going deep 5-10 min
· End in prayer and repeat application. 5 min
Total lesson time 45 min- 1 hr
Get several maps of your city (AAA is a great source), preferably the large ones which you have trouble re-folding.
§ Ask students to find various ways from their home to the church.
§ Ask what is the shortest way?
§ Have you ever went somewhere and got totally lost? Did you use a map?
Say: "Maps show us the big picture of streets and places of a city. They are designed to give directions, but do not actually give us the directions. We have to look at it and find our own way. Even though the directions are already there for us to see, we have to do the work to find them."
§ How is this like the Bible?
We can just cruise along life without the effort to look in the map and see if we can find our way, but all we do is get ourselves lost, especially in an unknown big city: The city of life.
§ Read Psalm 119:133
(Have students take turns reading this first section in a round, or highlight and assign readings to those who like to read in public.)
· The Bible calls us to faith and accountability in its entirety, to have faith in it without risk (since our place is already secured in heaven!), and with trust in any situation we encounter.
· The Bible is reliable and stands the test of time, so is your trust there or elsewhere?
· The Bible is the reliable source of historical information, the record of God speaking!
· The Bible is the source for our contact and guidance with our creator!
· The Bible is our story, our history, our struggles, our opportunities, our hope, and the climax of His plan and redemption.
· The Bible tells who we are and what we are, it gives us purpose and meaning. Our response is how we choose to live.
· The Bible is our source for life, liberty, and happiness!
The Bible is not to be a secret, but shared and communicated with power and conviction, because it has been entrusted to us as bearers of, as agents of, and witness of it's truth!
· This will give you greater personal conviction! (Philippians 3:10)
· Your life will change! (John 1:1-3)
· Your attitudes will change! (I Cor. 5:10)
· You will be pointed in the right direction! (Isaiah 40:31)
· The glory of God will be pointed out to you! (Jeremiah 1:6f)
· The Bible will break through our self-will and deceptions, including sin, temptations, and rationalizations, because the Bible is the voice of God! (II Cor 11:1f)
· The temptation of Jesus was to satisfy His physical hunger, but His focus was the Father!
· There is no other final authority than the Word of God!
Lesson: "FIND OUT FOR YOURSELVES!!!"
REMEMBER: THE BIBLE CHANGES LIVES!!!
· You will become a greater person by being a greater servant.
· Your message and witness will be increased greatly.
· Bible study reveals real life principles for us all. Our problems and struggles become minor shadows to His glory!
The promise of scripture is that it may not promise us riches and problem free lives, what it does promise is His presence. When we place our trust in Christ because of His word to guide us, then we will have lives enriched with purpose, meaning, and fulfillment. Joshua 1:8; Proverbs 1; Psalm 1
· Let us not forget the results of placing Christ first in our lives! Psalm 119:11;105; John 8:31-36; 15:11; 16:33; 17:17
THE GOAL OF BIBLE STUDY: DON'T JUST INTERPRET IT, BUT APPLY TO YOUR LIFE!!!
REMEMBER: BE SURE TO INCORPORATE WHAT YOU KNOW INTO YOUR LIFE!!!· It is not enough to know something; but we must be able to do something. This is what our response to grace and sanctification is about!
There are too many people in the world that just do not get it! Just as the Pharisees asked Jesus for a miracle after He fed over 4,000 people! Just as some crazy guy was screaming at the airport ticket person to get on his flight after they announced the airport is closed due to fog. Just as so many Christians sit in their pews every Sunday and do nothing for the Lord; they just do not get it! (Mark 8)
One of the great things about the Bible is it is honest with the characters that it portrays. If we were to write such a book, would we explain our weakness and stupidity, or how great we are? The Bible reveals the good, the bad, and the ugly, and it will with us too!
"You search the scriptures because you believe they give you eternal life. But the Scriptures point to me." (John 5:39 New Living Bible)
The question is do we get it? Since the Bible is God's authoritative Word, we no doubt will spend more time in it! Are we prepared to allow the Word of God to get in us, make changes, transform, and renew our minds for His glory? (Romans 12)
· If the Bible is not where you place your trust, then where is your trust and where will it lead you?
· We cannot have the Words of Jesus without the Bible.NOW WHAT, NOW I KNOW WHY; WHAT DO I DO?
So how do we study the Bible? Countless copies of scripture are sold and sit on shelves and bookcases unread! Why? Because people do not know how to engage it, how to read the Word of our Lord: Too apprehensive with fear of conviction or unsure how to go about it.
Yet God himself gives us the directions and the ability to proceed. Matt 7:7John; 14:24; James 1:25
We can make the Bible real in our lives, so let us not be filled with fear or with apprehension; but put our discouragement away with confidence that we can go before God by the power of His Spirit, through His Word!
This is the last study on the why and importance of the Bible.
Divide into your small groups and ask the group collectively to write a love letter to the Bible. They can also forego the small groups and do this individually, spending quite and alone time doing this.
In small groups or all together ask:
· What did you say and mean?
· What will you do now that you know you love the Bible?
· If you do not love the Bible why? What is in your way?
Turn off the lights and ask rhetorically: "What is passion?" "What are you passionate about?" Do you have passion for your Lord first, or yourself? If it is you, what is in the Lord's way?
Spend time in prayer, pray that the Lord convicts everyone here with a passion and love for His Word.
© 2000, Rev. Richard .J. Krejcir Ph.D. Discipleship Tools www.discipleshiptools.org