07: The Bond of Revival – Teaching Plan

Key Thought : A praying congregation with a common message and mission will revive the power of the Holy Spirit. There is priority in church unity and good relationships between members.gless07 (2)

[Teaching plan for The Bond of Revival August 12, 2013]

1. Have a volunteer read John 17:9-11.

a. Ask class members to share a thought on what the most important point in this text is.
b. What does it mean for Christ’s church, His people, to be one? In what ways are they to be as one? What doesn’t it mean?
c. Personal Application : How well does your local church reflect the unity spoken about here? How are you helping to bring unity? Share.
d. Case Study : One of your relatives states: Why doesn’t Jesus pray for the world? I thought He wanted all men to be saved. But here He says He doesn’t pray for the world, but only for those whom God has given Him. What does this mean?.” How would you respond to your relative?

2. Have a volunteer read Acts 5:42.

a. Ask class members to share a short thought on what the main idea of this text is.
b. How did the passion for preaching and teaching Jesus unite the church?
c. Personal Application : How connected are you with the SDA message and mission? Why are you a Seventh-day Adventist? Share your thoughts.
d. Case Study : One of your friends states, “Is one of the reasons the church isn’t united today because they are not daily preaching and teaching Jesus? Doesn’t unity depend on a sense of mission and outreach versus the idea of selfishness and complacency? How does your church match up?” How would you respond to your friend?

3. Have a volunteer read Acts 15:19-23.

a. Ask class members to share a short thought on what the most important point is in this passage.
b. How did the early church solve a major dispute over circumcision?
c. Personal Application : What is your role in the structure of the SDA church as a member? How might each member be more constructively involved? Share.
d. Case Study : One of your neighbors states, “I don’t want to join any church organization. Organization leads to dogma and church hierarchy. I think the last day church will be scattered believers from all faiths and creeds.” How would you respond to your neighbor?

4. Have a volunteer read Matthew 18:15-18.

a. Ask class members to share a short thought on what the main idea of this text is.
b. How does following the council here foster church unity? How often do we practice this council in our local church?
c. Personal Application : When people are put on sanctions or disfellowshipped for behavior unbecoming a Christian, why is there usually animosity and rebellion against church authority? Share your thoughts.
d. Case Study : Think of one person who needs to hear a message from this week’s lesson. Tell the class what you plan to do this week to share with them.

(Note : “Truth that is not lived, that is not imparted, loses its life-giving power, its healing virtue. Its blessings can be retained only as it is shared.” MH p. 149.



07: The Bond of Revival – Teaching Plan — 3 Comments

  1. [Moderator's note: Thank you for using full names when commenting. Thank you.]
    Are we born sinners or at what point do we become sinners.

  2. Very good question Deanna. We are all born with a heredity and tendency to sin. We are also born with the consequences of sin. However, it is my understanding through Scripture that we are not guilty of sin until we willfully and knowingly break God's law. "Everyone who sins is breaking God’s law, for all sin is contrary to the law of God." 1 John 3:4 NLT "“If you were blind, you wouldn’t be guilty,” Jesus replied. “But you remain guilty because you claim you can see." John 9:41 NLT This is why we don't baptize infants. They have no knowledge of sin until the age of accountability, therefore they have no guilt until they reach a point in their life where they understand what sin is. Of course Jesus has come to free us from sin. I once heard a man who had quit smoking several years ago say, "I will always be a smoker, but I will always choose not to smoke." While we are sinners, through God's grace we can choose not to sin.

    • William, I appreciate your explanation and generally agree even though I see some problems with it. The biggest problem to me is the sin offering of the sanctuary that was required, "If a person sins unintentionally against any of the commandments of the LORD in anything which ought not to be done" (Lev. 4:2 NKJV). The SDA Commentary refines what unintentional means, "That is, “unwittingly” (RSV), unintentionally, inadvertently, thoughtlessly, or carelessly" (The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, Volume 1, Page 727). It is an offering for all cases except willful disobedience which is covered in the trespass offering. All deviation from what is right is sin as the Hebrew word for sin (chata') shows which generally means to miss the mark which does not automatically imply an intention to do so. There are different degrees of guilt but sin is still sin and everyone has sinned (Rom 3:23) even those who do it in ignorance all the way down to an extremely young age.

      This is one of the reasons why I like Jn 3:4 as the primary definition of sin which says that "sin is lawlessness" (NKJV). It is a mindset that is promoted because of our carnal nature since the fall and involves choice. We all have a bent toward sin from birth. Even those who may not know the specifics still know within themselves what is right and wrong (Rom 1:18-20) and are therefore guilty. From what I understand that is the reason for the sin offering, to cover our sin done in ignorance of explicit knowledge. It may also be part of the reason why Jesus required that He be baptized even though He was sinless as a kind proxy for those who for whatever reason can't.

      As for infant baptism I think you are right. We wait to be sure that the person understands what they are doing. Only in knowledge does the rite become meaningful. Nor is it done in order to gain salvation for it is deep in symbolism - it is a statement of faith in God's work in us.


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