Let me tell you why you are here. You’re here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth. If you lose your saltiness, how will people taste godliness? You’ve lost your usefulness and will end up in the garbage. (Matthew 5:13)
Here is a simple, rule-of-thumb guide for behavior: Ask yourself what you want people to do for you, then grab the initiative and do it for them. Add up God’s Law and Prophets and this is what you get. (Matthew 7:12)
Change your life. God’s kingdom is here. (Matthew 4:17)
God said, “My presence will go with you. I’ll see the journey to the end.” (Exodus 33:14)
All you need to remember is that God will never let you down; God will never let you be pushed past your limit; God will always be there to help you come through it. (1 Corinthians 10:13b)
- January 8: Mark 1
- January 16: Mark 2
- January 23: Mark 3
- January 30: Mark 4
- February 6: Mark 5
- February 13: Mark 6
- February 20: Mark 7
- Read the Bible to get familiar with it (try to read it thru in a year, or take 2 years)
- Read a Psalm a day (for 30 days, skip day 31) – you will have read them all in 5 months
- Read a chapter a day – Set goals and you can get thru the Bible rather easily
- If you follow the daily readings posted on the Facebook group page you will get through almost the entire Bible in 3 years.
- Look at the Bible for direction, comfort – how better to 1) know you are loved, unconditionally and 2) to learn how to love others.
- Everyone has the right and responsibility to investigate and interpret the Bible for yourself.
- Since we are doing research (study), there are 6 basic questions one can ask of every thing you are investigating (5W & 1H = Who, What, Where, When, Why and How). Yes, play reporter and get to know the Bible better.
- The Bible is not a rule Book!!
- Basic steps of applying the Bible to your life 1) Observation, 2) Interpretation and 3) Application
Various methods of study
Verse Analysis – what is the importance of a verse?
- Pick a verse
- Message of the verse
- Context – how does it fit in the passage
- Questions – ask a question of how it may affect your life or reflect God’s love
- Application – how can I use the verse to grow in my service/love to God
ABC Bible Study
- Read – select a book or passage of the Bible. Read the whole thing in one sitting. Then read it again in another version. Try to read it in at least 2 versions (the more the merrier). Try to read the book/passage at least 4 times to get familiar with it before you think of starting your study.
- A TITLE – Give it a title and outline the book/passage. Ignore the chapter designations and outline it as you feel it should be organized.
- BEST VERSE – does it have a key verse that sums up the book/passage? You may even find you will want to memorize the verse – to help you to remember the message of the study.
- CHALLENGE – does the book/passage talk to you? What was your first impression of it? How did you feel? Where did it take your thoughts? Did it challenge you in some manner?
- DIFFICULTIES – Can you explain the book/passage to someone else? If not, why?
- ESSENCE – What is the heart of the message God is trying to tell you with this book/passage?
Taking it to the next level – ABC Study with a few twists
- LOOK at Parallel passages
- LOOK at Parallel verses
- BACKGROUND – research a) WHO wrote the passage, b) WHEN was it written, c) To WHOM was it written, d) WHY was it written, e) WHAT purpose/message was the writer trying to convey to the readers at the time?
- WHERE – get a map, see any references to locations, people that may be mentioned.
- You may even want to read a commentary about the book/passage.
- Read the book/passage out loud or listen to it on tape/CD. It is amazing how hearing it read changes the way you interpret it.
These steps are basic. I hope this will help you get ready for this evening and the rest of the year. Each of you are wonderfully and uniquely made in the imagine of God. Because of that, I am so blessed and honored to be your pastor.
Sing God a brand-new song!
Earth and everyone in it, sing!
Sing to God — worship God!
Shout the news of God’s victory from sea to sea,
Take the news of God’s glory to the lost,
News of God’s wonders to one and all! (Psalm 96:1-3)
The angel said, “Don’t be afraid. I’m here to announce a great and joyful event that is meant for everybody, worldwide: A Savior has just been born in David’s town, a Savior who is Messiah and Master. This is what you’re to look for: a baby wrapped in a blanket and lying in a manger.” (Luke 2:10-12)
Take the old prophets as your mentors. They put up with anything, went through everything, and never once quit, all the time honoring God. What a gift life is to those who stay the course! You’ve heard, of course, of Job’s staying power, and you know how God brought it all together for him at the end. That’s because God cares, cares right down to the last detail. (James 5:11)
“Joseph, son of David, don’t hesitate to get married. Mary’s pregnancy is Spirit-conceived. God’s Holy Spirit has made her pregnant. She will bring a son to birth, and when she does, you, Joseph, will name him Jesus — ‘God saves’ — because he will save his people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:22)