Christian Education
 
This page contains the content of Christian Education post.  It is one of the ways we use to extend the teaching ministry of the Church to our members, our friends and the world.  It is a supplement to the teaching that goes on in classrooms, meetings, and other gatherings of the Church where Christian theology, doctrine, and instruction is taught. We are welcomed and encouraged to comment on any of the messages by clicking the “SS Preview” link you want to comment on, going to the bottom of the page and filling in and Submitting the Reply at the end of the message.  Most of the post will have audio playback so you can listen to as well as read them.  We hope you are blessed, enlighten and inspired through our Christian Education forums and invite you to join us at any of our meetings.
 

Sunday School Commentary and Preview 1- 23-22

 

Greetings members and friends and welcome to another commentary and preview to this Sunday’s study of the Word.  This Sunday’s study text is entitled “Judges, Justice and Priest” and it is based on Deuteronomy 16:18-20, 17:8-13

Christians believe the God of Abraham and Father of Jesus is the One and only true God.  This God is also the Maker and Creator of everything which includes us.  As such, it is His prerogative to establish the principles, rules and standards His creation will operate under. 

All the physical and natural laws which govern our world and the universe are established by God.  Moral and ethical laws through which people relate to other people and things are also His to establish. 

One such law or principle is the ideal or notion of justice.  The underpinning of justice, as with God’s laws of morals and ethics, is found in the command to treat everyone the way one wants to be treated or to love others as oneself.  In keeping with this, we are commanded to seek what is fair and balanced when dealing with harm or injury to our relationships with others whether caused intentionally or unintentionally. 

In our fallen world, disruptions in harmonious relationship are going to occur.  To deal with those disruptions, God told the Israelites through Moses to appoint unto themselves judges.  The lesson text does not give the criteria or method for appointing judges, but it is mention and seen in other places. 

A judge will hold enormous power and authority to make decisions that impact on a society.  Therefore, judges should be God-fearing, respected within their community, wise, trustworthy, experienced and understanding in order to be appointed to judge the relationships of others. 

Beginning with these characteristics, judge’s decisions must be just.  To be just, a decision must be fair to all involved.  It should seek to repair, and to the extent it is possible, restore societal harmony to the place it was or to a better place.  

In order to do this, the text says justice cannot be twisted.  In other words, decision cannot be declared or rendered as fair and balanced when they are not.  They violate the divine principle of treating everyone the way one wants to be treated.  To prevent this from happening, judges must be impartial with those appearing before their court.  They must not show respect of persons or  accept gifts or bribes in making their decisions. 

A just judiciary is essential to the survival of the society as expressed in v. 20 with the words “so you may live or continue to be” in the land.  In the United States, the appointment of judges is the most important exercise in the nation which has turned into a partisan political endeavor that is leading to the disrespect of the decisions judges are called on to make. 

When people have no confidence in the decisions of the courts and refuse to abide by them, that signals the beginning of anarchy and the breakdown of law and order.  For a society to live, there must be confidence in and respect for the courts. 

The latter verses of the study text emphasize the importance of making just decisions especially in matters where a judge is incapable of making the decision.  Here Moses establishes a type of court of appeals rooted in the priesthood. 

When the civil courts proved inadequate to deal with a case, an appeal to the spiritual was to take its place.  The decisions made by the priest had the added sanction of Divine appointment because the priests were chosen or determined by Divine Law.  Their judgement was final and could not be appealed.  

It was similar to the United States Supreme Court from which there is no appeal of its’ decision.   Everyone was to abide by it without question regardless of how they felt about it.  Those who refused to abide by the judgement, were considered evil and had to be removed from society by way of death if necessary.  So shall the nation survive or continue. 

The United States is on the brink of chaos and anarchy because of how the members of the Supreme Court have been chosen recently.  When controversial and unpopular decisions were handed down in the pass, the nation generally when along with the decision because the populace had confidence in the process and judges were confirmed on an overwhelmingly bipartisan basis. 

Today, judicial appointments are held hostage and confirmed on an ideological and party line vote.  This is eroding confidence in the backstop of law and order and justice in this nation.  When the backstop no longer works, lawlessness and violence will take its place. 

God’s people need to recognize this and help restore integrity to the most importance exercise and process in society of appointing those who repair, restore and enhance societal relationship.  The law and its application must be fair and just to those who believe as well as those who don’t believe, to the God-fearing and the godless for harmony to prevail.  

Well, be sure to look over the study again and come prepared to offer your comments, questions and perspective on the meaning of the study.  If you can’t attend your own Sunday School class this Sunday, you can join us live and online at 9:00 am at www.fbmbc.org and clicking the online services link

You can also join us live by dialing 508 924-2890.  If you have any comments or questions, be sure to place them in the comment section or you can share them on Sunday.  So, let’s all have a great lesson and discussion this Sunday and remember to fear God and keep His commandments.

 

Pastor Jordan

 

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Sunday School Commentary and Preview 1-16-22

 

Greetings members and friends and welcome to another commentary and preview to this Sunday’s study of the Word.  This Sunday’s study text is entitled “The Laws of Justice and Mercy” and it is based on Exodus 23:1-12

Relationships.  This is the main focus of what the bible teaches us about.  It teaches us about how we should relate to God, how we should relate to others and even how we should relate to ourselves.  This Sunday’s study has important principles and commands concerning these relationships. 

The first commands and principles deal with truth.  When I first read them, I thought within myself how far are those who have influence upon others, especially certain current lawmakers, media broadcasters and others, from these commands.  Not only are we forbidden by God from spreading anything false, but neither are we to aid or assist in any way anyone to do this. 

Suffice it to say there is widespread aiding and abetting lies and liars going on in society today made exceptionally easy, quick and instantaneous through the internet and other global communications methods.  Once a lie to released, it can spread faster than a virus and can’t be recalled.  All the damage it causes can not be undone. 

God commands not to go along with a crowd when the crowd is wrong.  Because more and more people say something is right, okay or acceptable doesn’t make it so.  We are commanded not to allow popular opinion to shape and determine what is moral and just but the commands and teachings of God. 

Neither are we to respect persons in respect to justice.  People are guilty or innocent regardless of their race, economic status, nationality, sex or any other factor upon which a preference or favoritism could be shown. 

Mind you that some are and would attempt to use this as a means to maintain a privileged status when this command or principle was ignored to advantage them and disadvantage others.  To achieve a fair and equitable society acknowledge of pass wrongs should be made and remedies put in place to counteract the damage that was done to the extent it is possible.  

God commands us to do good and help those who would do evil to us.  For instance, it is not acceptable to take advantage of or be indifferent to someone’s situation even if they hate us, dislike us or are any way different from us.  No person is to be denied fairness, justice and equity because of their underprivileged status. 

We are commanded not to have any part of anything that is false or in condemning the innocent.  This God says we will most definitely answer for.  We are forbidden from accepting favors or bribes in exchange for any injustice or circumvention of truth. 

We are commanded to treat strangers and others unlike ourselves with kindness remembering our forefathers were once strangers and many of them were mistreated.  Here again, we are to treat others the way we want to be treated, not how we or those in our past may have been treated. 

He ends this study text with a command to care for the poor and less fortunate and a respect for the seventh day of rest.  A society owes it to God to take care of the poor.  God takes care of us and we must take care of each other in providing a floor for everyone. 

Another major problem with society is our greed and idolatry.  More and more of us seldom or never take the seventh day off in our pursuit of money and pleasure to honor and thank God for all He does for us. 

Again relationships.  How we treat and respect one another, God and ourselves is what God is most concerned about.  It forms the foundation of a holy and righteous kingdom and nation.  Right now, we as a people and nation are so far for this.  By continuing down this path of ignoring these commands and principles, a nation will surely collapse under its own immorality and disobedience to Divine commands. 

Well, again be sure to look over the study again and come prepared to offer your comments, questions and perspective on the meaning of the study.  If you can’t attend your own Sunday School class this Sunday, you can join us live and online at 9:00 am at www.fbmbc.org and clicking the online services link

You can also join us live by dialing 508 924-2890.  If you have any comments or questions, be sure to place them in the comment section or you can share them on Sunday.  So, let’s all have a great lesson and discussion this Sunday and remember to fear God and keep His commandments.

 

Pastor Jordan

 

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Sunday School Commentary and Preview 1- 9-22

 

Greetings members and friends and welcome to another commentary and preview to this Sunday’s study of the Word.  This Sunday’s study text is entitled “Hagar And Ishmael Are Not Forgotten” and it is based on Genesis 21:8-21.  

Not everyone who has heard of Abraham in the bible may not have heard of Ishmael.  People may have heard of Isaac and Jacob, but not Ishmael.  On the other hand, there are people who call themselves and are called Arabs who know of Ishmael, but may not know Isaac and Jacob. 

This is because the two great religions of Christianity and Islam both trace their roots to Abraham.  They diverge with the first two sons of Abraham.  According to both religions, Abrahams first son was by his slave. 

The bible said Abraham’s wife insisted that he have a child by Hagar, their slave or servant, in order for Sarah to have a family through this child.  This practice was not uncommon.  Both of Jacob’s wives, Rachael and Leah, did something similar with their slave women. 

The bible said that Sarah gave Hagar to Abraham to be his wife or better still to be understood as a concubine. Once Hagar was pregnant with Abraham’s child, she began to feel and behave beyond her status as a slave which incurred the wrath of Sarah.  She fled from Sarah but returned at the insistence of an angel to submit to Sarah’s authority and promises that God will take care of her son. 

Nearly 14 years later, Sarah bore her own son and named him Isaac.  Shortly after Isaac was weaned, Sarah saw something in the matter Ishmael interacted with Isaac and prompted her to insist that both Hagar and Ishmael be cast out of their family.  She did not want Ishmael to share in the inheritance Abraham would leave to his offspring. 

This request really disturbed Abraham and he didn’t want to do it.  But God again intervened and told Abraham to do as his wife has requested because I will fulfill the promises I have made to you through Isaac.  But because Ishmael is your son, God said he would take care of him and make a great nation from him. 

So, Abraham did as his wife asked and forced Hagar and Ishmael to leave after giving them some water and provisions.  Sometime after they were forced to leave, their water and provisions ran out.  They were both at the point of death when an angel responded to their cries of help. 

They were led to a well where they found the water they needed to survive.  Again, a promise was made to take care of Ishmael.  They remained in the wilderness where Ishmael became a hunter and archer and took a wife from the land of Egypt. 

Hagar and Ishmael are a result of the unwillingness of Sarah and Abraham to wait on the promise of God.  Abraham was 85 and Sarah was 75 and it looked to them that Sarah’s suggestion to have a son through Sarah’s slave woman was a reasonably way God would fulfill His promise.  After the deed was done, Sarah realized they had been presumptuous and should not have done what they did.  But then it was too late. 

This is a familiar story that plays out in most of our lives.  We try to help God out instead of being patient and waiting on Him to act.  Because of our impatience, we have and will make decisions we will later come to regret.  The song writer said “You can’t hurry God, you have to trust Him and give Him time, no matter our long it takes”. 

Even with this indiscretion, Abraham is still called the father of faith.  It was not his idea not to wait, but he shares in the blame because he yielded to the voice of his wife.  Yet he believed that God could fulfill His promise in Ishmael and is probably why he yielded to Sarah’s suggestion. 

Abraham loved Ishmael and asked God couldn’t Ishmael be the fulfillment of His promise.  But God told him not to worry about Ishmael because He would take care of him.  But His promise would be fulfilled in a son yet unborn and that son would be Isaac at the age of 100 and Sarah age 90. 

One final note.  Upon Abraham’s death, both of his sons Ishmael and Isaac came together to bury him. 

Well, again be sure to look over the study again and come prepared to offer your comments, questions and perspective on the meaning of the study.  If you can’t attend your own Sunday School class this Sunday, you can join us live and online at 9:00 am at www.fbmbc.org and clicking the online services link

You can also join us live by dialing 508 924-2890.  If you have any comments or questions, be sure to place them in the comment section or you can share them on Sunday.  So, let’s all have a great lesson and discussion this Sunday and remember to fear God and keep His commandments.

 

Pastor Jordan

 

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Sunday School Commentary and Preview 1- 2-22

 

Greetings members and friends and welcome to another commentary and preview to this Sunday’s study of the Word.  This Sunday’s study text is entitled “Justice, Vengeance and Mercy” and it is based on Genesis 4:1-13

The bible tells us that Adam and Eve had two sons named Cain and Abel.  It also tells us that the older brother, Cain, killed the younger brother.  The bible does not tell us the reason Cain killed his brother.  We are given a few details about their lives from which we can infer a motive for Cain’s actions. 

Cain was a tiller of the ground and Abel a keeper of sheep.  Sheep are livestock and are generally considered more valuable than food which is raised from the ground.  While both can be consumed by humans to sustain life, sheep and animals represent a higher form of life and their flesh is likewise more valuable because it is more expensive to replace that any field crop. 

Both Cain and Abel brought an offering unto the Lord.  Why either of them felt the need to bring an offering we are not told.  The Lord respected or appreciated the offering Abel brought but not the offering of Cain. 

Abel’s offering consisted of the best firstborn sheep of his flock.  Instead of keeping it for himself, he offered it to the Lord and the Lord responded positively toward his unselfish act as a way of honoring Him. 

Cain brought unto the Lord the less valuable nothing special about it fruit of the field.  His offering didn’t represent the selfless sacrifice of what was worthy of the honor the Lord is entitled to.  It may be inferred that God didn’t give Cain’s offering respect because it was not worthy of His respect.  

It must be noted however that the intrinsic value of a sacrifice alone does not make it worthy or acceptable.  The means of the giver (meaning what they are able to bring) and the intent and disposition of the heart also matter.  

Sometime after Cain’s offering was rejected, he was found angry and his face and appearance which the text refers to as countenance began to reflect his angry.  The Lord asks Cain the reason for His anger.  Cain didn’t reply or give his own reason for being angry. 

The Lord suggest in a statement to Cain that the root of his anger was in something he was not doing well.  What was it that Cain was not doing well that also caused him to offer to the Lord an unworthy offering or sacrifice?  We are not told.  But we are told that whatever it was, sin was lying at the door or has a role in it. 

Here God warns Cain to get control over sin or it will take control of him.  It was some sinful thing or thought that was causing Cain not to do well and was a cause for his anger.  These things led to Cain killing his brother for no just reason or cause. 

Cain did not get control over what he was not doing well and this led to him being willing and able to kill his brother over something that should not have arisen to or resulted in death.  We see this same thing playing out everyday in 2021, and now 2022, and all the years since. 

There is something in humanity that we are not doing well that if left uncontrolled drives us be cruel to others.  It left Cain unfeeling and uncaring about his brother saying he was not his brother’s keeper. 

And so it is with man today and everyday since.  We can be uncaring and unfeeling toward others, cruel,  hurtful and indifferent about their pain or suffering.  No wonder the second command is to love others as we love ourselves. 

God punished Cain for his evil deed toward his brother.  God will not allow evil to go unpunished.  From Abel to the last person standing, everyone will answer for the life they have chosen to lead and the deeds we have done and are doing.  The good news is that God offers forgiveness, but only if we repent by beginning to do well and seek to do His will.    

Well, again be sure to look over the study again and come prepared to offer your comments, questions and perspective on the meaning of the study.  If you can’t attend your own Sunday School class this Sunday, you can join us live and online at 9:00 am at www.fbmbc.org and clicking the online services link

You can also join us live by dialing 508 924-2890.  If you have any comments or questions, be sure to place them in the comment section or you can share them on Sunday.  So, let’s all have a great lesson and discussion this Sunday and remember to fear God and keep His commandments.

 

Pastor Jordan

 

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Sunday School Commentary and Preview 12-26-21

 

Greetings members and friends and welcome to another commentary and preview to this Sunday’s study of the Word.  This Sunday’s study text is entitled “Justice For God’s Beloved People” and it is based on Nahum 1:1-15

Nahum is one of the minor Old Testament prophets for which little is known with a burden.  The word “burden” is generally used to refer to a heavy weighing threatening prophecy.  The bible relates him to Elkosh.  While there are several speculations as to where this or to whom Elkosh refers to including somewhere in Galilee or Judah, no one really knows where or who this is.  

His burden was directed toward Nineveh, a city Jonah, also an Old Testament prophet had gone to and prophesied against some time earlier at God’s direction, which became the capital city of the Assyrian Empire.  

Some consider the Assyrian Empire the greatest of the Mesopotamian empires because of how far it reached geographically and because of significant developments in civil communication, planning and governance along with developments in the use of iron and other military strategies which gave them a superior advantage over others they fought.  

But sometimes kings, kingdoms and rulers begin to believe and behave like they don’t have to respect God.  This is what happened when the king of Assyria blasphemed the Lord at the siege of Jerusalem (2 Kgs 19:9-19).  There the Lord took out over 180 thousand in one night.  The remnant of that army left and never returned to Jerusalem. 

The burden that Nahum has against Nineveh is in part for this and their arrogance.  Nahum ascribes jealousy, anger and wrath to God.  By being jealous, God is protective of His name and honor.  His wrath and anger is like that of a father who is protective of His children and outraged and incensed by those who harm them or have ill intentions toward them.  He will not allow those who harm them or who blaspheme His name to go unpunished. 

God is not petty or trifling like someone who is easily offended and wants to repay someone for something they did.  On the contrary, God knows mankind and is slow to take offense for the things he does.  But God has a responsibility to remind man of his place and who He is tangling with.  So Nahum describes and reminds us of the awesomeness of God’s power. 

While the main part of his burden is directed toward Nineveh, it is a message to the entire world to remember and acknowledge who God is and that none can stand against Him and all must answer to Him. 

Then Nahum begins to lift up those who trust God and declares in a sense that God has their back and will not forsake them.  Even if it means avenging them after they have suffered, God will reward those who trust Him and judge those who oppose Him and harm those who trust Him.  

The once great and powerful city of Nineveh was so thoroughly overthrown and judged, that it is difficult to find where it once stood.  It will never bother God’s people or anyone else again.  The prophet said Nineveh went too far when it boasted about its conquest and insulted the Lord’s ability to save Jerusalem. 

God delivers His own into the hands of spoilers so that He may teach and discipline them.  But the spoilers need to recognize that it is God who gives them permission to do what they are doing and not to go overboard or forget that lest they end up being spoiled or judged for going too far.  For when God sees His people have had enough, He stops what He allowed to happen to them and begins the process of restoration. 

In conclusion we must always remember that God is on the throne and will judge the deeds of all people.  No one will get away with anything.  Though the righteous suffer, and not always because of something they have done though sometimes it is for that reason., our suffering is not in vain.  God will make everything right is the belief and faith all the true children of God in all and every age have.  

Well, again be sure to look over the study again and come prepared to offer your comments, questions and perspective on the meaning of the study.  If you can’t attend your own Sunday School class this Sunday, you can join us live and online at 9:00 am at www.fbmbc.org and clicking the online services link

You can also join us live by dialing 508 924-2890.  If you have any comments or questions, be sure to place them in the comment section or you can share them on Sunday.  So, let’s all have a great lesson and discussion this Sunday and remember to fear God and keep His commandments.

 

Pastor Jordan

 

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Sunday School Preview

Sunday School Commentary and Preview 12-19-21

Sunday School Preview

 

Greetings members and friends and welcome to another commentary and preview to this Sunday’s study of the Word.  This Sunday’s study text is entitled “Justice and Righteousness Reign” and it is based on Isaiah 9:2-7.  

In the text today, the prophet Isaiah gives a prophesy of hope that is directed to people who are distressed without much hope for things to get any better.  He describes his audience as people sitting in the dark.  People who are resigned to just a matter of time before death will come to end their weary lives. 

Many people in Isaiah’s time felt this way.  The nation was corrupt, life was difficult and they were being threaten by enemies around.  It was not a happy or joyous time to be alive.  People throughout human history have been and continue to be in a place like Isaiah is describing.  

Just imagine sitting in a completely dark and gloomy place or wilderness where there is no light at all and out of nowhere an unexpected light appears and begins to shine.  This is what Isaiah is describing. 

No matter what time in human history this occurs, it is one of the most joyous things that can happen to people sitting in darkness in the shadows of death.  The light provides a reason for hope and escape from a place of despair and gloom. 

In verses 3 and 4, Isaiah describes the change in mood that the present of the light brings.  He talks about joy and numbers being multiplied and the happiness people experience when there is an abundant harvest or when dividing the spoils and bounty when a great victory has been won.

In verse 5, Isaiah describes the thoroughness of the victory over the darkness and the causes thereof like an enemy whose boots and bloody clothes are fuel for fire.  An enemy who has been completely vanquished, disarmed and burned never to bother his audience again. 

Finally, Isaiah describes this light as the Messianic king who has come to sit on the throne of David promised by God.  To this King is ascribed divine attributes inherent in the names by which He is referred.  He is able to provide counsel that is wonderful or amazing.  He is a God who is mighty in the face of those who would oppose Him.  He is eternal and provides and cares for His people just as a father.  He grants peace to all who will trust and obey Him. 

Unlike other kingdoms that come and go, Messiah’s kingdom is eternal and everlasting.  It is founded and based upon righteous judgement which provides comfort for all who are denied it in this life.  Isaiah said we can be sure about this because the Lord Himself will see that it shall come to pass. 

So, Christians believe this prophesy is fulfilled in Jesus of Nazareth.  Christmas marks His coming into the world and by Him justice and righteousness shall reign for all time. 

Well, again be sure to look over the study again and come prepared to offer your comments, questions and perspective on the meaning of the study.  If you can’t attend your own Sunday School class this Sunday, you can join us live and online at 9:00 am at www.fbmbc.org and clicking the online services link

You can also join us live by dialing 508 924-2890.  If you have any comments or questions, be sure to place them in the comment section or you can share them on Sunday.  So, let’s all have a great lesson and discussion this Sunday and remember to fear God and keep His commandments.

 

Pastor Jordan

 

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Sunday School Commentary and Preview 12-12-21

 

Greetings members and friends and welcome to another commentary and preview to this Sunday’s study of the Word.  This Sunday’s study text is entitled “David Administers Justice and Kindness” and it is based on 2 Samuel 9:1-7, 9-12

Jonathan’s son Mephibosheth was only 5 years old when his father died.  He was left crippled and lame when his nurse accidently caused him to fall as they fled.  By the time David inquires about Jonathan’s descendants in this text, Mephibosheth has a young son. 

Assuming Mephibosheth was at least 17 or 18 when his son was born, David’s inquiry takes place somewhere between 12 and 20 years after Jonathan’s death.  Jonathan and David were very close friends and had sworn to each other to also treat each other and their family with kindness. 

David had been king now for about 16 years.  During that time, he had been engaged with securing the kingdom and establishing himself as king of all Israel.  At last, he has finally at a point where he could bring Saul’s family out in the open and show Jonathan’s family the kindness he had promised him.  Whatever the reason for the delay or the cause, at long last David is inquiring about Jonathan’s family for the sake of showing kindness to them. 

It just so happened that a servant of Saul, Jonathan’s father, was alive and taking care of Saul’s estate and his name was Ziba.  He was summoned and came before David.  David asked him if there was anyone left of Saul’s family that he could should kindness to.  Ziba told David that Jonathan had a son who did live and had that son brought to the king’s palace. 

David told Jonathan’s son not to be afraid because he was not brought there for him to harm him, but to bless him for his father’s sake.  He promised to restore to him all of his grandfather’s estate and that he would forever be welcomed and blessed in king’s house and table. 

David informed Ziba that he had given Mephibosheth all that had once belonged to Saul and that he, his sons and his servants would now maintain and cultivate that land for Mephibosheth.  Kings had that kind of power and authority over their subjects.   Ziba complied with the king’s command and he and his household would be taken care of out of that which came from the estate which would be passed on to Mephibosheth’s son, Mica. 

So Jonathan’s son, after many years of struggling to survive as a crippled man and forsaken outcast of his family, was received as one of David’s own sons and would sit with the king’s family at his table because of David’s love, devotion and promise to his friend Jonathan, Saul, the king who tried to kill him and he succeeded on the throne, son. 

One thing we can take away from all this is that we should not base our relationship with all others on what or how someone else feels about us or has treated us.  If this wasn’t the case, then David and Jonathan would have no dealings with each other. 

If we treated and felt the same way some people feel about us or have treated us, we would have nothing to do with those who are related to them in some way though they have not mistreated us and have nothing be good intentions toward us. 

Because we have had an unpleasant encounter with a certain person or group of individuals, it is not necessarily true all related to and associated with that person or group is the same way.  If we are not careful, we tend to paint everyone similar to someone else in some way with the same brush when we don’t know them or their intentions or feelings toward us. 

David and Jonathan didn’t let Jonathan’s father’s feelings toward David interfere with their feelings toward one another.  And because of it, someone’s life and that of his family that was a struggle at best and nearly forgotten and forsaken was now blessed because two people didn’t let what others did and think define how and what they would do and think.  And neither should we.  Because who knows, something similar could happen to us or someone we too befriended. 

Well, again be sure to look over the study again and come prepared to offer your comments, questions and perspective on the meaning of the study.  If you can’t attend your own Sunday School class this Sunday, you can join us live and online at 9:00 am at www.fbmbc.org and clicking the online services link

You can also join us live by dialing 508 924-2890.  If you have any comments or questions, be sure to place them in the comment section or you can share them on Sunday.  So, let’s all have a great lesson and discussion this Sunday and remember to fear God and keep His commandments.

 

Pastor Jordan

 

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Sunday School Commentary and Preview 12-5-21

 
Greetings members and friends and welcome to another commentary and preview to this Sunday’s study of the Word.  This Sunday’s study text is entitled “Justice and Obedience To The Law” and it is based on Deuteronomy 5:1-3; 10:12-13; 27:1-10
 
After the children of Israel rebelled and murmured against Moses and God following the spies report, God determined they were not ready nor worthy to enter the promised land which He had intended to give them as He promised their fathers.  As a result, He made them remain in the wilderness for forty years until that generation of those 20 and older were dead. 
 
Today’s study takes place at the end of that forty years.  If we are to take God’s words literally, then there would be no one in the congregation of Israel over the age of 59 except Moses, Joshua and Caleb.  I am inclined to believe that God’s declaration was to relieve Israel of a generation of people, so that most, and not necessarily all, of those 20 and over were dead. 
 
But literal or not, the children of Israel are set to enter the land promised to their fathers after wandering in the wilderness for forty years.  It had been that long since God made the Covenant with those who perished in the wilderness at Sinai also called Horeb.  Most of them were not born then, and most, if not all who were, were teenagers or younger. 
 
So in this study, of which the whole book of Deuteronomy is about, Moses leads this relatively young congregation of Israelites, purged of those who had died in the wilderness because of unbelief, into covenant with God before crossing Jordan into the promised land.  After calling them all together, he speaks to them about statues and ordinances. 
 
These are the words by which they shall live their lives.  He tells them that the Lord did not make this covenant with their fathers, but with them, all those who were there as he spoke and did not die in the wilderness.  God initiated the covenant with their fathers, but will complete it with them. 
 
Therefore, Moses urges them in the strongest possible terms to fear the Lord their God, to walk in all His ways and to love and to serve the Lord with all their heart and soul and to keep the commandments of the Lord and His statutes which he was commanding them for their good. 
 
Throughout Deuteronomy, Moses goes into some detail what all these ordinances and statues and commandments are.  At one point in the study text, it states that “Moses with the elders of Israel, commanded the people”.  It is curious to know who these “elders” were if no one was over the age of 59.  But they along with Moses charged the people to write all the words of this law upon stones that have been painted over with a type of lime or plaster upon which they were to write. 
 
Another group of stones were to be erected to form an altar to offer both burnt and peace offerings.  All of this was to establish or mark their presence in the new land and serve as a reminder to themselves and their posterity the words they were to live by. 
 
The final part of the study text establishes them as God’s covenant people.  It is like the end of a marriage ceremony when the minister pronounces the two are man and wife.  Moses pronounces to them that they are God’s people and as such they shall obey the voice of the Lord their God, observe His commandments and His statutes which he commanded them that day. 
 
The problem with Christians today is that we fail to see ourselves in a similar covenant relationship.  We don’t seem to think that obedience is important or necessary and that Jesus somehow absolves us from all accountability for disobedience and sin.  We have loss and some have never received the fear of the Lord. 
 
It is this fear, this reverence for God, that Moses insisted was paramount to entering and maintaining a covenant relationship with God.  It is the absence of this same fear that accounts for the sinful inconsistent witness and behavior of those of us who confess to be Christians or believers in God today. 
 
Well, again be sure to look over the study again and come prepared to offer your comments, questions and perspective on the meaning of the study.  If you can’t attend your own Sunday School class this Sunday, you can join us live and online at 9:00 am at www.fbmbc.org and clicking the online services link. 
 
You can also join us live by dialing 508 924-2890.  If you have any comments or questions, be sure to place them in the comment section or you can share them on Sunday.  So, let’s all have a great lesson and discussion this Sunday and remember to fear God and keep His commandments.
 
Pastor Jordan
 


Sunday School Commentary and Preview 11-28-21

 
Greetings members and friends and welcome to another commentary and preview to this Sunday’s study of the Word.  This Sunday’s study text is entitled “Good News For All” and it is based on Acts 10:34-47
 
The Acts of the Apostles is an account given by Luke of some of the things that happened in the immediate days, months and years after the death and resurrection of Jesus in the church.  While most of it records the missionary journeys of Apostle Paul and His interaction with the church at Jerusalem, it also records some significant events in the early life of the church that didn’t involve Paul. 
 
One such event was the sign God gave that the good news of the gospel was to be for all people and not the Jews only.  While Jesus was with the disciples, now apostles, He directed them not to go to the Gentiles, but to focus on the Jews in the house of Israel.  He once told a gentile woman seeking help for her daughter that it was not fit to get the children’s meat to the dogs. 
 
But His mission was to focus on those who already had God’s law and a context in which to receive His message.  Those outside the Jewish nation would have no idea what He was talking about and couldn’t place Him or His message in any context that would make any sense.  But after His mission was complete, He directed the Apostles to preach the gospel and make disciples of all nations everywhere. 
 
This was a transition and departure from what He had demonstrated and told them before.  So there was still reluctance and hesitancy to preach the gospel outside the Jewish nation for the same reasons while Jesus was with them and because there is no clear bridge between the Jews and Gentiles on which to bring the gospel. 
 
The first big breakthrough occurred when some gentiles who sought God were preached to by some Jews who knew God and had the gospel.  God arranged for Peter, the Jew with the gospel, to meet Cornelius, a gentile who feared and wanted to serve God.  God had Cornelius to find Peter and invite him to come to him and prepared Peter for Cornelius arrival and invitation to come. 
 
When Peter arrived at the home of Cornelius, a small crowd of people were waiting for him to hear what He had to say.  Peter perceived that his task was to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ to those who were gathered.  While he was in still preaching, the Holy Spirit filled those who were listening with the outward sign of speaking in tongues so that there could be not mistake as to what was happening. 
 
This was a clear sign and left no doubt that God has granted salvation to believing gentiles just as He had to the Jews.  Peter did not come alone but others Jews had accompanied him.  When they saw what happened, he asked those who came with him how could they now not baptize those who have received the Holy Spirit just as they had because God has accepted them.  So, Peter commanded that they be baptized. 
 
From this point on, the question of whether the gospel should be preached and given to the gentiles was settled.  The only thing that remained is how to reach and teach and preach to a heathenistic people and culture about a holy God who offers salvation to those who believe and obey His voice. 
 
That same task remains today and, in many ways, remain just as challenging as it was for Peter and the first Jewish disciples to reach the gentiles of their day as it is for the people of our day.  There were significant barriers those first disciples had to overcome.  Yet somehow, they found a way to get through to all those in their generation God had ordained for eternal life. 
 
We today face significant barriers and challenges to reaching those who are ordained for eternal life in our generation.  We must look for ways and methods for God to bring us together with God fearing people in our generation in every place in the world. 
 
There are those today who would choose salvation if they are able to overcome their doubt and fear that salvation is real and available to them.  Our task is and remains to help them overcome their doubt and fear. 
 
Well, again be sure to look over the study again and come prepared to offer your comments, questions and perspective on the meaning of the study.  If you can’t attend your own Sunday School class this Sunday, you can join us live and online at 9:00 am at www.fbmbc.org and clicking the online services link. 
 
You can also join us live by dialing 508 924-2890.  If you have any comments or questions, be sure to place them in the comment section or you can share them on Sunday.  So, let’s all have a great lesson and discussion this Sunday and remember to fear God and keep His commandments.
 
Pastor Jordan
 


Sunday School Commentary and Preview 11-21-21

 

Greetings members and friends and welcome to another commentary and preview to this Sunday’s study of the Word.  This Sunday’s study text is entitled “Rejoicing In Heaven” and it is based on Revelation 19:1-9

Today’s study lesson makes reference to “the great harlot” also known as Babylon.  The previous two chapters describe “Babylon” is some detail.  Babylon is described in these two chapters as the personification of a combination of religious and political and economic practices that are opposed to and in opposition to God. 

Babylon is particularly at odds against the true people of God and is directly responsible for the death and suffering encountered by many of them.  Babylon embodies all things that are enlisted to entice people away from God, amplify unbelief and is at the center of idolatrous devotion. 

So when she is revealed for who she is and is judged by God and brought down to nothing, most of humanity lamented and looked on with shock and horror while the people of God rejoiced that her day of judgement had finally come. 

The first few verses of Chapter 19, focus on the commentary of the aftermath of what is described as the “great whore or harlot”.  Again we hear the voices in heaven of persons who are witnessing the things God is doing with mankind and commenting as it is unfolding. 

They praise God for His salvation of mankind and His power which He used to do it resulting in His honor and glory.  They say He has rightly and justly judged the harlot and avenged the blood of His people shed by her. 

Some of this blood includes those who would have believed if not for the strong lure of the harlot to cause them to fornicate or commit idolatry with her.  Another voice urges God people to praise Him because He is Omnipotent meaning all powerful and He reigns.  He just didn’t start reigning with the fall of Babylon, but He has and always will reign. 

Yet one very powerful refrain I see and hear throughout the bible that is the principal unifier of all of God’s people from Abel to those mention in today’s text.  And that refrain is “the fear of God”.  I’m not going to expound on it here, but those who are called upon to praise God are those who fear Him. 

The multitude of voices in heaven say let us, meaning themselves and others, to be glad for the wedding day of the Lamb of God has finally come.  The bride of Christ or the Lamb is the Church, the redeemed He has bought with the price of His own blood. 

They are described as being arrayed to pure and bright linen with is the righteous acts performed by them.  Here again we can see that salvation isn’t as much about what we say as it is about what we do. 

The study text concludes with the blessing of being able to attend the marriage supper of the Lamb.  Of all the invitations one could receive, none is higher, more glorious or more honorable than one to the marriage supper of the Lamb of God.  John said that his guide told him to be sure to write this down because these words are from God and they are true. 

What a finish!  Just when the world thinks it has it all figured out, after it has built and placed all of its confidence in its ability to function without God, it shall all come clashing down in a matter of minutes that took centuries to build and people will be left with nothing who trusted in it.  There will be sorrow on earth but rejoicing in heaven. 

Well, again be sure to look over the study again and come prepared to offer your comments, questions and perspective on the meaning of the study.  If you can’t attend your own Sunday School class this Sunday, you can join us live and online at 9:00 am at www.fbmbc.org and clicking the online services link

You can also join us live by dialing 508 924-2890.  If you have any comments or questions, be sure to place them in the comment section or you can share them on Sunday.  So, let’s all have a great lesson and discussion this Sunday and remember to fear God and keep His commandments.

 

Pastor Jordan

 

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