Sunday, April 20, 2014

On 4-27-14, Isaiah 53:3-8, Luke 24:25-27, 44-47 or Isaiah 53:5-8a; Luke 24:25-27 will be our Adult Sunday School/Uniform Series/International Sunday School Lesson herein is my commentary. This lesson is known by some as From Suffering to Glory

From Suffering to Glory
 Isaiah 53:3-8, Luke 24:25-27, 44-47 or Isaiah 53:5-8a; Luke 24:25-27
International Sunday School Lesson
April 27, 2014
                                                                                 


Commentary
By
Jed Greenough




Spring is here!  Well I hope when this is posted anyway because as I write this a few weeks in advance we still have snow in our forecast where I’m at despite what the calendar says.  In any case spring is eventually a time of growth and birth, renewal and energy.  The winter blahs are replaced by spring ahs.
As we consider our lesson for this Sunday I think that this scripture is one that should encourage us to plant the seeds in our churches for renewed growth.  I don’t mean a growth in numbers but growth doctrinally and in practice where you worship.
By the time you read this the scripture for today will be too late for those who don’t attend your class but it needn’t be for you.  Use this scripture as a renewing force to accomplish growth where you worship.
This scripture shows people why they can have faith in the Bible.  The words in Isaiah for today that for us so clearly points to Christ were written roughly 700 years prior to His life.  The Jews who had them all that time could not apply them to Christ even those who walked with Him as we see the need for Him to explain in today’s scripture from Luke.
And clearly if He took the time to explain it to them it was vital, after all these were the ones who quickly, effectively and bravely built the new church.  Similarly, it was Paul who said, “For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified.”  1 Corinthians 2:2
This was all Paul wanted to concentrate on the Corinthians knowing, Jesus Christ, why He had to suffer and die and arise on the third day.  This really should be at the core for all of us and we all must be able to explain it to the next individual.
“For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.  For it is written: “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.”  1 Corinthians 1:18-19
Really without hearing, knowing and understanding how will any come to a true faith?  Again according to 1 Corinthians 1 there will be some, whether Jew or Greek or Gentile that will find it foolishness while others will see the wisdom of God.  Also from Isaiah 53 this time verse 1, “Who has believed our message and to who has the arm of the Lord been revealed?” The answer is you and me and some of those who we can share these Biblical facts with just as Christ did.
You know when asked about the signs of the End of the Age Christ talked in Matthew 24 about falling stars and we’ve had plenty of those lately in the form of meteor showers.  He also said the moon will not give its light and we had a lunar eclipse just a couple weeks ago with three more soon to follow.  Eventually just as Spring will firmly arrive for good so too will Christ.  We only have a limited amount of time to educate and be educated.  Plant the seeds while it’s the right season!

For Discussion:
1.      Discuss how the scripture from Isaiah 53 makes you feel.
2.      Read all of Isaiah 53 and the not included 1 Corinthians chapters 1 & 2.
3.      Discuss parallels you see between the scripture from Isaiah and the synoptic gospels.
4.      Discuss places in the New Testament where the scripture from Isaiah 53 is literally quoted.
5.      As I mentioned in another commentary read about the Ethiopian eunuch in Acts 8 as he came to faith after having these words from Isaiah 53 explained to him by Philip!!
6.      Discuss how Christ was foretold throughout the Old Testament.
7.      Discuss repentance after hearing and understanding.

Upcoming Lessons
5-4-14            Jesus Resists Temptation, Deuteronomy 6:13-16; Matthew 4:1-11 or Deuteronomy 6:13-16; Matthew 4:4-11
5-11-14          Jesus’ Mission on Earth, Isaiah 61:1-3; Luke 4:14-21 or Luke 4:14-21
5-18-14          Jesus’ Teaching on the Law, Matthew 15:1-11, 15-20
5-25-14          The Greatest Commandment, Leviticus 19:18; Deuteronomy 6:4-9; Mark 12:28-34





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


Sunday, April 13, 2014

On 4-20-14, Hosea 6:1-3, Luke 24:1-12 will be our Adult Sunday School/Uniform Series/International Sunday School Lesson herein is my commentary. This lesson is known by some as The Third Day

The Third Day
Hosea 6:1-3, Luke 24:1-12
International Sunday School Lesson
April 20, 2014
                                                                                 


Commentary
By
Jed Greenough

Good luck this week folks!
I mean it.  This week is a tough one to draw Hosea and Luke together.  For me it would really be a stretch.  Is it for you?
In my opinion to say that the three days being referred to in Hosea as being about the resurrection of Jesus would be the stretch.  In Hosea we are reading of an Israel that needed to turn or indeed return to God.
What I would do is concentrate on the Luke scripture where Christ is raised on the third day.  That is what all of us are doing this Easter weekend.  Like Israel mentioned in Hosea 6 will be saved if they turn to God so will all who believe in Jesus and turned to Him for forgiveness.
Jesus Himself though He told His followers while He was with them that He would arise on the third day the story of the resurrection as accounted by the women was doubted.
We know that they treated the words according to today’s scripture as “nonsense”.  What a feeling that most have created in the women!  Peter at least was intrigued or excited enough to literally run to see what had happened at Jesus tomb.  But after he left the scene himself he wondered what had actually occurred there.
For me this always gets me thinking about the sharing and the believing of the gospel message.
The women saw angels, yes, but they excitedly believed and they enthusiastically wanted to share the good news.  Do we show such enthusiasm?
After hearing some may have treated them with derision or at least skepticism.  Have you dared to expose yourself to such treatment?
A few react like Peter and want to know more.  He would discover the truth soon enough but what a great example of how we need to follow up to strike while the iron is hot as it were with those who share some interest in our message.  How are we doing in our churches to be readily there to follow up with the interested?
The hardest part is getting the message to people if we expect to just deliver it in the confines of the church.  Studies show they usually only come through the door is they come with someone.  We must literally bring them through our doors or we must bring the message to them.
But what happens next is just as important, that they hear the gospel message about salvation and the follow through.  People who do have an interest, who are enabled by the Father need to feel as comfortable as they did in coming through the door to find out more.
Yes, the message is sometimes met with derision as the women’s message was but they no doubt felt self-satisfied when they were proved true.  Let’s dare to have the same experience.  Share the message! Everyone deserves to be as the Israel in Hosea 3 to repent and be restored.

For Discussion:
1.      Discuss why you did or did not invite someone to church this week especially!
2.      Discuss why it is hard for someone to visit a church.
3.      Discuss why it is hard for some to invite people to join them at church.
4.      Discuss the reaction of the women.
5.      Discuss the reaction of those they told.
6.      Discuss the reaction of people today when they hear.
7.      Happy Easter, I hope you actually had Sunday School this week!
Upcoming Lessons
4-20-14         The Third Day, Hosea 6:1-3, Luke 24:1-12
4-27-14         From Suffering to Glory, Isaiah 53:3-8, Luke 24:25-27, 44-47 or Isaiah 53:5-8a; Luke 24:25-27
5-4-14            Jesus Resists Temptation, Deuteronomy 6:13-16; Matthew 4:1-11 or Deuteronomy 6:13-16; Matthew 4:4-11
5-11-14          Jesus’ Mission on Earth, Isaiah 61:1-3; Luke 4:14-21 or Luke 4:14-21
5-18-14          Jesus’ Teaching on the Law, Matthew 15:1-11, 15-20
5-25-14          The Greatest Commandment, Leviticus 19:18; Deuteronomy 6:4-9; Mark 12:28-34





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