Want to learn more about Teachings of Jesus? Use these Bible Studies for personal devotion, group Bible studies, or teaching a church class. Below are links to the lessons in this 13-part series.
One of the greatest blessings of my life was to have a
loving father. It was my father who taught me that fear and love are
not inconsistent. I had no doubt that my father loved me absolutely.
On the other hand, I understood what judgment meant! It was a
wonderful combination that shapes my understanding of our great
Father in heaven. Our understanding of our Father in Heaven is even
better informed by what Jesus had to say about Him. That is our study
this week. Let’s plunge into our Bible and see what we can learn
about our loving heavenly Father!
Who is Jesus? This is the most important question in
life. Recall our discussion last week about Thomas worrying because
he did not know the directions to the place Jesus was preparing for
him in heaven? Jesus explained to Thomas that He was not talking
about a map, He was talking about theology. In John 14:5-6 Jesus
explains that He is the only way to heaven. Like Thomas, this is
something we want to be sure we get right! Let’s jump into our study
of the Bible and learn more about Jesus!
Have you noticed that even within your church
denomination there are different groups of believers? One large group
that cuts across denominational lines is known as “charismatic” or
“Pentecostal.” According to the “ReligionFacts” web site,
Pentecostals constitute the largest Christian group – about 500
million worldwide. These Christians have a special focus on the work
of the Holy Spirit. What is the focus of your church? Let’s dive
into our study of the Bible and see what we can learn about the Holy
Spirit and our Christian walk!
You undoubtedly have opinions on many things. I know I
do. On some issues I think my opinion is important because I know a
lot about the subject. On other issues I know very little and want to
learn more from those who are knowledgeable on the subject. On many
issues, what I think doesn’t really matter. On a few issues, my
opinion can change things. What is the most important issue on which
we can have an opinion? I think it is the question of eternal life.
Who is most informed on that subject? Jesus! What He did changed the
course of human history. Let’s jump into our study of the Bible and
learn more about Jesus’ opinion on salvation!
In our last two lessons we discussed the power of the
Holy Spirit, grace and salvation. That logically leads to our study
this week. What would you answer if someone asked: “How can I be
saved?” Many years ago, a fellow in my Sabbath School class asked me
whether he was saved. I told him I was sure that he was saved because
he knew the gospel, he understood grace. However, I as I reviewed our
conversation later, it occurred to me that with my focus on grace, I
had not suggested that he repent of his sins. He unexpectedly died a
little later. Sometimes our conversations are more important than we
realize. Let’s jump into our study of the Bible to be sure we know
what to say when someone asks us, “How can I be saved?”
Recently, I was in a Bible study where the teacher kept
stressing that Christians are saved “from their sins” and not “in
their sins.” What, exactly, does that mean? If it means that we are
not saved if we have sin in our life, then the statement is false. If
it means that someone who is saved by grace partners with the Holy
Spirit to live a life in accord with God’s will, then the statement
is true. Our lesson this week is about becoming more like Jesus –
who lived a sinless life. Let’s explore the Biblical view of being
saved from our sins!
When I was a young, I read statements about the lofty
standards by which Christians are required to live. When I read the
requirements and attitudes involved, I said, “I cannot do this. Why
even try?” How did it make any sense to live a miserable life trying
to reach an unattainable standard? I should just reject the whole
idea because I was certainly destined to fail! Thankfully, it also
seemed impossible to live a life without Jesus. Later, I learned
about grace and was greatly relieved that I was saved by grace alone,
and the lofty standard set before me was the goal of a lifetime, not
a requirement for salvation. Let’s dive into our study of the Bible
and explore the standard set before those who are saved!
A significant part of my job over the years is handling
religious liberty cases. I only represent “the little guy,” meaning
employees, in a narrow area of workplace religious freedom. However,
a very important question in this kind of case is whether the
employee has a sincere religious belief. I have learned to avoid
representing employees who do not have a solid connection to a local
church. Those who regularly worship with a group of believers are
much more likely to hold sincere religious beliefs. Why is that?
Let’s explore what the Bible teaches about the believer and the
Most Christians know that Jesus taught us to share the
gospel. How much time do you spend thinking about how to accomplish
this goal? If you are like me, your focus is more inward: How do I
accomplish some work-related goal? How do I get someone to think I’m
worthy of respect or likeable? How can I better enjoy my free time?
How would your life be different if the first and most important
question of the day was, “How do I bring glory to God today? How do I
advance the Kingdom of God today?” Let’s dive into our study of the
Bible and see what we can learn about how to advance God’s Kingdom!
If you follow this lesson you know that I teach
salvation by grace alone. Our study this week reveals that the law,
if properly kept, requires an extraordinary standard of conduct. This
extraordinary standard makes some believe that God’s law is not that
relevant in light of grace. If we can’t keep the law, and keeping it
is not the key to heaven, why try? On the other hand, anyone who
contemplates the universe knows the importance of the law. Laws, like
gravity, rule everything. Not only is our universe controlled by
laws, but there are natural laws that control the circumstances of
our lives. The train wreck of nations and individuals who believe
they are outside of the law can be seen all around us. Let’s plunge
into our study of the Bible and learn more!
I love the Sabbath! In general, it is hard for me to
rest. If I’m at home, and I see something that needs to be done, I
almost always do it. When I’m at work, I always have something I must
do. At any other time than the Sabbath, I feel guilty (or something
like that) when I’m resting and there are things to do. On the
Sabbath, however, my guilt is gone. If I start thinking about the
work I must do, I say to myself, “This is the Sabbath, work is off-limits.” What a blessing to have a guilt-free time of rest! The
Sabbath is an important Bible doctrine, so let’s dive right into our
In 1 Corinthians 15:26 we are promised that at Jesus’
Second Coming “the last enemy to be destroyed is death.” That is
good news and it is the subject of our Bible study this week. Do you
think it is significant that death is the “last” enemy destroyed?
Wouldn’t you rather it be the first? How many times in life have we
been unhappy with God about the death of a friend or family member?
What do we say to others who feel anger? If you believe, as I do,
that God is in charge of the universe, how do we explain human
tragedy? Should we even try? Let’s dive into our study of the Bible
and see what we can learn!
When I was a young man I hoped that Jesus would delay
His Second Coming. All of my close relatives were alive, and I had
not yet gotten married. Since it seemed that Jesus said there would
be no marriage in heaven, I thought maybe if He shuffled His feet a
little that would be okay with me. I suspect some of my readers are
desperate for Jesus to come again, and others are okay with more
delay. My thought is that we have no idea how great things will be
when Jesus comes and takes us to heaven. If we really knew, no one
would be content with delay. Let’s plunge into our study of the Bible
and see what we can learn about the Second Coming of Jesus!