“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:34-35
In our last Teaching Notes we began sharing some of the lessons taught during a discipleship seminar at churches more than 40 years ago. We addressed the Center, Goals and Outline of discipleship.
In this edition we are going to look at the Disciple’s Basic Eight.
“And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” Matthew 28:18-20
The resurrected Jesus stood before His disciples just before He ascended to Heaven. He had their attention. Jesus told His disciples to “go” and “make disciples” in the knowledge that He had “all authority” in heaven and on earth. The disciples knew what Jesus meant by “make disciples” because they were His disciples. They understood the process of becoming a “disciple” of Jesus Christ because He had done that with them. They knew it meant obeying (observing) everything Jesus had commanded them.
In this next section of Teaching Notes we will look at several parts of a discipleship seminar taught at churches during the mid-1970’s. I hope it will help you in your walk with Christ and invite you to share the notes with others who have a desire to be “committed followers” of Jesus.
The term “seeker” is used a lot in Christian circles today (e.g. seeker friendly, seeker sensitive, seeker focused). I found this Bible study about being a seeker from more than 40 years ago that may be helpful as you consider the proper use of the term.
“For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead …” Romans 1:20
In our last study in Romans we looked at the purpose for God’s wrath.
In this study we will look at how God has made His existence clear to people.
“Then He said to them, ‘These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me.’ And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures.” Luke 24:44-45
Following His resurrection, Jesus opened the understanding of His disciples so they would comprehend the Scriptures (Law of Moses, Prophets, Psalms) and see that the words in them were about Jesus. The Old Testament predicted a Messiah. The New Testament revealed that Jesus is the Messiah.
The entire Bible paints a beautiful “Portrait of Jesus.”
You may be familiar with Lee Strobel’s book The Case for Faith. It was published three years ago (Zondervan, 2014). While I am also a career journalist and former atheist and will recommend Lee’s book to you, this Teaching Notes is not about his book.
I wrote this Bible study about 40 years ago (1976) and titled it “A Case for Faith” to address how the Apostle John presented his case for faith in Jesus Christ in his Gospel account. I had been saved for about five years by that time and was amazed at the perfection of God’s Word and the Gospel of Christ. I still am.
In a recent Teaching Notes we looked what the Bible teaches about Praise. We now look at six reasons for your church to praise the Lord.
Though I was involved in Hinduism, Taoism and Buddhism prior to becoming an atheist, I didn’t think of that as being part of the occult. However, the definition of the word might lead you to think of Eastern religions as being part of the occult –
Definition of “occult” (Dictionary.com, Merriam-Webster, Oxford Dictionary, Cambridge English Dictionary)
- of or relating to magic, astrology, or any system claiming use or knowledge of secret or supernatural powers or agencies
- Mystical, supernatural, or magical powers, practices, or phenomena
- relating to mysterious or supernaturalpowers and activities
- beyond the range of ordinary knowledge or understanding; mysterious
- Communicated only to the initiated; esoteric
- not revealed
- hidden from view
I saw the connection between Eastern mystical religions and the occult soon after becoming a Christian. As I learned more about that connection, I shared my findings in Bible studies and other speaking opportunities.
I was a well-known atheist in the area where I lived in the late 1960’s and early 70’s because of hosting a daily radio talk show where religion was often a topic of discussion. I was a “strong” atheist and used my position to challenge and mock the beliefs of religious people, especially Christians.
After becoming a Christian, I received many invitations to share my story at churches, religious group meetings and on Christian radio programs. The earliest notes I’ve found from my talks about atheism is from a talk I gave on radio more than 40 years ago. I share these notes with the hope they might help you understand the thinking of atheists and the great privilege we have to share Christ with them.
“For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them.” Romans 1:18-19
In our last study in Romans we looked at the history of the ungodly and unrighteous suppressing the truth in unrighteousness.
In this study we will begin looking at the purpose for God’s wrath.