Further Study: Read Ellen G. White, The Lifework, pp. 269, 270, in Education; and Laboring for the Middle Class, pp. 564-566, in Evangelism.
In this closing work of the gospel there is a vast field to be occupied; and, more than ever before, the work is to enlist helpers from the common people. Both the youth and those older in years will be called from the field, from the vineyard, and from the workshop, and sent forth by the Master to [...]
Perhaps the most socially attractive feature of primitive Christianity was the absence of class distinctions. Dividing walls had crumbled beneath the gospel’s weight. The common person triumphed through Christ. Christ transformed the ordinary into the extraordinary. Carpenters, tax collectors, stonecutters, queens, domestic servants, priests, Greeks, Romans, men, women, wealthy, and the destitute all became equals within Christ’s kingdom of grace. In reality, the Christian community was to be a classless society.
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What do each of [...]
An evangelist once celebrated (perhaps bragged about) the attendance of quality upper-class people at his seminars. (One would hope he equally celebrated the attendance of the more ordinary types, as well.)
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With Christ, however, no class distinctions existed; no one was ordinary; everyone was an exception. Not surprisingly, Jesus reached the masses with commonplace illustrations and straightforward speech. Nothing about His manner suggested that anyone was excluded from His concern. Modern disciple-makers must likewise carefully [...]
Key Thought : People who know their limitations and trust God for guidance can accomplish extraordinary things for Him.
[Lesson plan for Discipling the "Ordinary" February 3, 2014]
1. Have a volunteer read Luke 2:21-24.
a. Ask class members to share a thought on what the most important point in this text is.
b. Why did Jesus’ parents offer two turtle doves rather than a lamb or bullock for His purification?
c. Personal Application: What hindered you from accepting Christ and living the [...]
In the New Testament, Peter stands out as one of the most influential of all the disciples. In fact, he ended up being one of the most influential people in all of human history. Talk about changing the ordinary into the extraordinary!
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Read the following texts. How do they help us to understand how Peter had been so radically changed, despite tremendous faults?
Luke 5:1-11. What did Peter say here which showed that He was open [...]
Read John 2:1-11 and Matthew 15:32-39. How did Jesus use simple, everyday desires and needs to make disciples and transform lives?
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Ordinary people share natural physical, emotional, and social desires. They want physical nourishment, personal significance, and friendship. Jesus understood these characteristics, placing Himself in social situations that provided opportunities to reach people through these universal desires.
Whether Jesus was changing water into unfermented wine from the fruit of the vine, or turning fishermen into preachers [...]
Read Luke 2:21-28, Mark 6:2-4, and Leviticus 12:8. What do these verses tell us about the economic class into which Jesus was born? How would that class have influenced His ministry?
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Joseph and Mary’s purification offering clearly indicated their economically poor background. This tradition sprang from the Mosaic legislation recorded in Leviticus 12:8, and it required that a lamb be brought for this offering. However, a compassionate exemption had been provided for impoverished people. Turtledoves [...]
Read for This Week’s Study: Luke 2:21-28; Matt. 15:32-39; Matt. 16:13-17; Luke 12:6-7; 13:1-5; James 2:1-9.
Memory Text: Now as he walked by the sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and Andrew his brother casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers. And Jesus said unto them, Come ye after me, and I will make you to become fishers of men. And straightway they forsook their nets, and followed him (Mark 1:16-18).
Christ’s death was the great equalizer: it showed [...]
While living in Texas I was taking a Texas history class at a community college. In writing a paper for class, I mentioned a political figure who was assassinated. I contrasted the pomp and circumstance of his funeral with the plain funeral of the man who killed him and was killed shortly after. I pointed out in my paper that, humanly speaking, the political figure was not any more of a saint than the man who killed him, yet he [...]