The Treasure of the Kingdom of God

hidden-treasureI am preparing to teach this Sunday in our children’s department at church. We have been walking through the entire Bible during 2016. We have arrived at the teachings of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. In fact, all through the Bible, we have learned that it is all about Jesus. It has been lots of fun and very eye opening. Last week, we covered Jesus’ miracle of the feeding of the 5,000 in John 6. During Jesus’ 3 and 1/2 year ministry on this earth, many, many people were given the opportunity to repent and become disciples of Jesus Christ. The 11 of the 12 disciples answered the call, repented and dedicated their lives to discipleship. There were others, about 120 in all who ended up answering the call by the end of Jesus’ ministry. The vast majority of the people who heard the call, chose to walk away, not repenting and deciding not to dedicate their lives to discipleship. Some of those same people probably answered the call the second time it was offered, on the Day of Pentecost when 3,000 people repented and dedicated themselves to discipleship. Of the other 2,000 who answered the call a few days later, I am sure many of them were the same ones who had rejected the call when Jesus gave it. Praise God that He is the God of second chances, and third, and fourth etc. Continue reading

The mark of a genuine disciple

disciple

Attn: This is a long post 4,300 words long 😀

I have had some interesting discussions over the past year about what a genuine disciple of Christ is like. Some of the discussion points are

  1. Can a person be a believer in Christ without being a disciple of Christ?
  2. Is discipleship required to be a genuine believer in Christ?
  3. Can a person say yes to salvation and no to discipleship?
  4. Does Jesus call us to faith and then to discipleship?
  5. If you present salvation in the packaged deal of discipleship, does salvation depend on works instead of by faith alone?
  6. Is it possible to follow Christ and yet, still not be a genuine disciple?

I would like to try and answer these questions, not from a theological stance but, from a Biblical stance. Continue reading

Jesus feeds 5,000

10807452516_a6890f0df2_bI am excited to be able to teach the Word of God once again this coming weekend. As a children’s department, we are continuing our walk through the entire Bible, learning that the Bible is all about Jesus. Last week, we learned that in the miracle of Jesus calming the storm, Jesus used the miracle to teach the difference between fear and faith. The two cannot coexist. Fear drives out faith and faith drives out fear.

This week, we are going to examine the miracle of Jesus feeding the 5,000 in John 6. Anytime you witness a miracle from Jesus in the Gospels, you will encounter the following formula: miracle, teaching, and results. In John 6, we see this formula. I want to examine John 6 to see what we can learn about Christ and about ourselves. Continue reading

The Green Eyed Monster, Jealousy

static1.squarespace.comI am preparing to teach during our 5th-6th grade retreat in a couple of weeks. The weekend’s theme is overcoming our sin nature. One of the ways that our sin nature manifests itself is through the green eyed monster of jealousy. The prime manifestation of our sin nature is our selfishness. The green eyed monster of jealousy stems from our selfishness. Here is the Greek definition of the word translated into English as selfish, “This is being upset because someone got something and you did not. Instead of rejoicing with that person, you get upset because you wanted it“. Jealousy is a twin sister with envy. The difference is, jealousy produces envy. Envy means not only are you upset at what others have, you want it and if you cannot have it, you will destroy what they have so that the other person can be miserable with you. We are going to see how this place out in a real life situation between King Saul and the future King David. Continue reading

Fear vs. Faith

13962664_1092360710850344_5861196214084256199_nDear readers, I know that it has been a while since I have been able to write. It has been a busy summer and I am only now getting back into the swing of things for the school year. This Sunday, we are continuing our walk through the Bible in 2016. Our studies have centered on the ministry of Jesus over the past few weeks. This week, we are going to cover Jesus’ miracle of the calming of the sea. This is a crucial lesson for Jesus’ disciples both then and now. I have learned much from this lesson and I want to share it with you, as I think through the lesson in prep for teaching it. Our main text is Mark 4:35-41. Continue reading