So the next generation will know – Homework for personal Bible study

Hey there disciple!

This past week we continued our Bible study series called “So the next generation will know” to help us face the challenges of young people leaving the Church (“rise of the ‘nones’).  This week’s lesson was titled, “Love Explores.”  In general we discussed turning teaching into real life-changing training.  Reading and gaining head-knowledge is good, but you need to deploy out into the comfort of the church to be fully obedient to Christ’s commands to make disciples of all the nations.

The below should take about 15 minutes to complete each day (if you take a while to reflect).  Stay faithful, for God Who blesses you is faithful.   Looking forward to connecting with you again on Wed October 21, 7pm (see text for conference call info).   

God bless you little brothers and sisters.

-bro. martin

BCAN Theme 2020: Life together in Christ!

Acts 2:42-47

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Day 1 Put your heart and head into the challenge

2 Peter 3:18 NKJV – but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen.

Acts 1:8 NKJV – “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

For disciples of Christ, the main objective for training is deploying. We need to look to see where God is at work around us – outside the four walls of the church building. As we grow to be more like Christ, we are motivated to do the things that Christ did. Christ brought hope and healing through the power of the gospel.  Those who were bound up by burdens of sin and oppression found liberty in God’s mercy and grace. The authors (Sean and Wallace) refer to this type of outreach as a “challenge” because obstacles will need to be overcome. The authors suggest a preparation process:

  1. Prayerfully propose and plan the CHALLENGE: Prayerfully consider who the people God is leading you to share with and serve.  Then don’t just show up somewhere without thinking through the logistics. For us this is true about School Supplies Distribution, Angel Tree, and 30 Hour Famine community service. we prayerfully propose and plan.
  2. Practice making your CASE for God’s truth: Practice does not make perfect, but it does lead to peak performance. We want to role play, simulate the sharing moments, give you opportunities to explain and explore your faith before the challenge day.  
  3. Purpose to come out of COMFORT ZONE: The challenge/outreach will stretch you, grow you. Growing pains are uncomfortable, but they are worth it in the end as you mature to look, act, and behave more and more like Christ.

Question: How do you personally go about trying to discern God’s will for your life? What do you look for to see God at work around you?  

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Day 2    Meet people where they are

Acts 17:22-23 NKJV – Then Paul stood in the midst of the Areopagus and said, “Men of Athens, I perceive that in all things you are very religious; for as I was passing through and considering the objects of your worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Therefore, the One whom you worship without knowing, Him I proclaim to you:

The authors suggest we deeply consider who God is leading us (StronG ministry) to share with and serve. As we reflect back to Acts 17 Paul was traveling all over seeking opportunities to present the message God had given him.  From Thessalonica, to Berea, to Athens, Paul was meeting people where they were.  Not only do we meet people where they are physically, but we also need to meet them where they are culturally and emotionally. In verses 22-23 we see Paul using a cultural and religious symbol of the Athenians in order to point them toward the One True God. Where can we go so that we too can say “Him I proclaim to you” for the spiritually seeking?

The authors describe some alternatives for a ministry like ours to consider.

  1. Street: For us this could be walking around a busy main street or town square type place.  The street could be good if we have a limited amount of time to share and serve.
  2. University Campus: For us this could be visiting a campus and having sharing sessions with a college group or co-laboring with a ministry that is working on the campus already. The campus could be good if we had more time and wanted to partner with a ministry of young people whose average age is older than ours…but not “too” old 😊.
  3. Door-to-door (canvasing) in a neighborhood: For us this could be walking around a residential area looking for opportunities to pray for households and also share with those walking around nearby. We could pick up trash we see so we also show kindness and care for the neighborhood. Canvasing could be good if we want to partner with a certain neighborhood’s association or if members of BCAN live their and ask us to be a blessing to their neighborhood.
  4. Community event (e.g., a fair): For us this could either be an orchestrated ministry event sort of like Church at the Park or a Suicide Awareness and Prevention event. The community event could be good if we are already working with a set of organizations and agencies and have a strong reputation with them for helping. Event coordination would take longer, but the impact might be greater.

In general the authors also suggest that you travel outside your city in order to come outside your comfort zone.

Question: Which of these places do you feel God leading you to go to share His truth? Do you sense God leading us to stay in Taunton or go beyond? If elsewhere, then where?

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Day 3    Bring people to Jesus Christ

Acts 17:30-31 NKJV – “Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent, because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising Him from the dead.”

Disciples of Jesus Christ meet people where they are, but they do not leave them there. Christ went out to find souls, but did not leave those souls stranded in the hands of the adversary. Our prayer of course is that God’s mercy would continue to be granted to those who have not accepted the free gift of salvation. In the past God overlooked some things people did, but the time will come in each life when God will call each person to give an account.

The One ordained and resurrected in these verses is Jesus Christ. Those who die without Christ die an eternal death.  God has called us to point the unsaved to Christ through our words and deeds. This is what Paul was doing in verses 30-31, and this is what we should do in our daily lives.

Question: If you had one Bible verse to share from memory with someone then what would be? (besides John 3:16).

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