Tuesday, April 14, 2015

On 4-19-15, 1 John 4:13-5:5 will be our Adult Sunday School/Uniform Series/International Sunday School Lesson herein is my commentary. This lesson is known by some as Trust in God’s Love or Believe God’s Love


Trust in God’s Love

Or

Believe God’s Love

1 John 4:13-5:5

International Sunday School Lesson

April 19th, 2015

 

Commentary

By

Jed Greenough

 

The scripture last week left off with this verse, "The one who keeps God's commands lives in him, and He in them. And this is how we know that He lives in us: We know it by the Spirit He gave us." 1 John 3:24 

We see this again as we begin this week reading basically this same thing in today's first verse. So as I concluded last week I would begin this week again by saying we should be encouraged by those two verses. 

What seems like very sophisticated scripture over the last two weeks need not intimidate but encourage. The fact is that though I tend toward the very conservative when interpreting scripture and think that making things easy opens the door for the devil there are times when we should “lighten" up. 

These last two weeks might make us all at times think we don't measure up but as I touched on last week the mere guilt or desire to be better is your proof of the Spirit in you. 

Don't get me wrong I am not condoning the status quo. I still believe we need to strive for the prize and stretch daily for sanctification through the Spirit's help but if you are at a point that you read the words from today and feel you aren't worthy than stop it and remember that none of us are and thus the necessity for Christ. 

In verse 18 we can remember that though the Bible tells us that "fear is the beginning of wisdom" it does not end there. Fearing you are not saved or dwelling on your unworthiness gets in the way of the love God wants from us and for us to give to each other. 

I make a big deal about the consistency of the Bible in showing the consistency of God’s word concerning the same issue wherever we are in the Bible. This scripture for today and last week does nothing to contradict that. 

Read these verses from today and you read in a verbose nature what Jesus said in a succinct manner in Matthew 22:34-40 

"Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” 

Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” 


Dissatisfaction with where we are or how we are or how we are doing in our lives as Christians will fail us. We will never measure up to scripture though we should strive but if we can get past it all and concentrate on what Christ said rest assured He will be satisfied with us. 

 

For Discussion:

  1. Do we superficially love one another?
  2. Discuss loving when you aren't loved in return.
  3. Discuss scriptures that talk of how we are to treat one another such as widows and those in jail. 
  4. Discuss in a general sense how this scripture makes you feel when you read it.

 

Upcoming Lessons

 

4-26-15     Watch Out for Deceivers!      2 John or  1 John 5:6-12, 18-20; 2 John


 

 

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 Biblica. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved

 

 

 

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

On 4-12-15, 1 John 3:11-24 will be our Adult Sunday School/Uniform Series/International Sunday School Lesson herein is my commentary. This lesson is known by some as Love One Another


Love One Another

1 John 3:11-24

International Sunday School Lesson

April 12th, 2015

 

Commentary

By

Jed Greenough

 

 

 

 

If this week in preparing for the lesson you went ahead and read the preceding verses of the chapter you might be depressed if you didn't finish with today's.
I may not have been depressed but I was somber about those verses.

That's the problem, from time to time, when we weekly just pull out a handful of verses and try and put together some ideas that we can contribute to each other and I will get back to that in the discussion questions.

Those not included first 10 verses say in a sobering and chilling effective way that if you keep on sinning you are not in Him, meaning Christ. Or more forcefully further along it also says that those who go on sinning are of the devil!

The theme continues in the few remaining verses concluding with verse 10 by hinting what this is all about as being how we love one another. But then thankfully with today's verses we start to see some answer because we both know you and I to some extent are still sinning.

The answer is love. I have always known it of myself that I need to love my brothers and sisters more and to make a difference. For some, loving is something they do like breathing, for others, like myself and I believe the author John, not so much.

Check out the early day description of John as one of the Sons of Thunder and I think just as you can see Paul's personality come out in scripture, you can see John's. It might be pure conjecture but I think John wrote so forcefully about this because he knew he needed to work on it and it shamed him.

Rather than being depressed by our sinning and be paralyzed I think we can be encouraged by John knowing he too was a work in progress.

As the last verse encourages, we do have the Spirit in us. If we didn't we wouldn't be shamed in the work we yet need to do to improve our love for each other.


For Discussion:

  1. Read the scripture where Jesus talks of the greatest commandment
  2. Discuss how you can lay down your life for others in a figurative sense
  3. One great lesson plan for this week could be to read a verse and discuss one at a time. This is a great week for this.
  4. I do this blog week after week because I love God and you. Discuss if that is why you teach or prepare as a student.
  5. Discuss what we do that literally shows we love.
  6. Discuss who the Bible shows we are clearly to be taking care of and thus showing our love towards.
  7. Discuss what your class could do together.

 

Upcoming Lessons

 

4-19-15     Trust in God's Love or Believe God's Love      1 John 4:13-5:5


 

 

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 Biblica. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved