Sunday: Bottom Dwellers
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Image © Jeff Preston from GoodSalt.com

Societies establish hierarchies. Wealthy or well-educated people usually acquire the highest positions.

Image © Jeff Preston from GoodSalt.com

Good moral citizens, the ordinary people, normally occupy the middle rungs on the social ladder. That leaves the bottom dwellers, those such as prostitutes, substance abusers, criminals, the homeless, and others. During Christ’s time, that list also included lepers and tax collectors.

Read Matthew 21:28-32 and Luke 15:1-10. What do these passages teach regarding Christ’s attitude toward social outcasts?

What happened that propelled the social [...]

Significance of One Ordinary Person
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GoodSalt.com-lwjas0293

History is full of the stories of great people who have had a monumental influence on the history of their church, their country or the world.

Jesus With Ordinary People Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com

But what about ordinary people – people like you and me?

Most of us probably know at least intellectually that Christ would have died for just one sinner – a sinner like you or me.1  But have we stopped to consider what that means?

It means that [...]

Sabbath: Jesus and the Social Outcasts
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gless07

Read for This Week’s Study: Matt. 21:28-32, John 8:1-11, Mark 5:1-20, John 4:5-32, Matt. 9:9-13.

Memory Text: The woman then left her waterpot, went her way into the city, and said to the men, Come, see a Man who told me all things that I ever did. Could this be the Christ? (John 4:28-30, NKJV).

A young woman-having come from an unbelievably sad and horrible background (which included two out-of-wedlock children by the time she was fifteen years old) sat in prison, [...]

Inside Story: Just in Time
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Megy groaned as another contraction tore through her body. She had been in labor for18 hours, and her baby hadn’t arrived yet. Four men carried Megy on a stretcher toward the river several miles away, where they hoped to meet a public vehicle that could take Megy to the government clinic.

Storm clouds gathered on the horizon and threatened heavy rain. If the men couldn’t reach the river before the rains swelled it, they couldn’t cross. Megy’s life and the life [...]

Friday: Further Study: Discipling the “Ordinary”
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studymore

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 [...]

06: Discipling the ‘Ordinary’ – Thought Starters
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Image © Pacific Press from GoodSalt.com

[Thought questions for Discipling the "ordinary" February 5, 2014]

Image © Pacific Press from GoodSalt.com

1. The great equalizer. How hard should we work to bring the wealthy, the influential, the highly educated into our fellowship? If we are all equal in Christ, doesn’t that equality extend to powerful politicians and brilliant scientists? Or is it our mission to disregard the highly placed and focus on the lowly of spirit or, in our lesson’s terminology, the “ordinary”? Can we dare leave anyone [...]

Confessions of a Rich Bible Worker
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Image © Stan Myers from GoodSalt.com

“And all the believers met together in one place and shared everything they had.  They sold their property and possessions and shared the money with those in need. They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity.” Acts 2:44-46 NLT

Image © Stan Myers from GoodSalt.com

As a very rich Bible Worker I would like to speak out today on a social issue. It seems by some news [...]

Thursday: A Classless Society
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Image © Rolf Jansson from GoodSalt.com

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.

Image © Rolf Jansson from GoodSalt.com

What do each of [...]

06: Discipling the “Ordinary” – Hit the Mark
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The word of the day is Potential. Everyone has potential. No one can decide what its limits are. Only God knows. And we must try to develop potential; not just in ourselves but also in those we serve. Potential.

“In the common walks of life there is many a man patiently treading the round of daily toil, unconscious that he possesses powers which, if called into action, would raise him to an equality with the world’s most honored men. The touch [...]

Wednesday: Heavenly Evaluation
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Image © Standard Publishing from GoodSalt.com

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.)

Image © Standard Publishing from GoodSalt.com

 

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 [...]

06: Discipling the Ordinary – Lesson Plan
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gless06

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 [...]