05: Discipling the Sick – Hit the Mark
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He had only one hope. No other options. No other solutions. He had used every resource at his disposal and everything that concerned family members and friends could do had been done. Now dangling in a bed let down through the roof of Peter’s house, he was at his moment of truth.

The familiar story of the paralytic shared in Luke 5 contains many of the shared experiences of those facing sickness personally or dealing with loved ones who are sick. [...]

05: Discipling the Sick – Lesson Plan
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gless05

Key Thought : There is an intimate correlation among physical, emotional, and spiritual health. We need to minister to the total person.

[Lesson plan for Discipling the Sick January 27, 2014]

1. Have a volunteer read John 9:1-3.

a. Ask class members to share a thought on what the most important point in this text is.
b. How do we understand the seeming unfairness of those who are born with handicaps and less than normal physical or mental health? Can it be [...]

Tuesday: Healing the Mind and Body
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Through physical healing and mental restoration, Jesus made disciples. Often Christ’s patients suffered both mental and physical diseases. Physical restoration itself was never the final objective. The ultimate goal was always discipleship. Healing could provide twenty, fifty, perhaps seventy-five additional quality years. Discipleship offered eternal life with Christ.

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In Luke 8:26-39, the demon-possessed man from the Gerasene region begged to accompany Jesus. Instead, Christ commissioned him to evangelize his family and townspeople. Having been so [...]

Monday: Healing the Body
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Study Mark 2:1-12. What can we learn regarding the connection between physical sickness and sinfulness? What lessons should we not take from this story, as well?

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Contrary to biblical doctrine, ancient Greek philosophy separated the spiritual (soul) and physical (body) dimensions of human existence. Believing that human souls were immortal, many Greeks devalued the importance of their bodies. Because bodies were temporal, passing away with time, they were considered less valuable than was the enduring [...]

Sunday: The Healing Messiah
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Read Isaiah 53:4, Matthew 8:17, and John 9:1-3. In what way are we to understand these texts? What questions do they raise? What hope do they offer us?

Image © Darrel Tank from GoodSalt.com

In antiquity, sickness was considered the result of sinful actions. (And even today, who hasn’t at times-even if only for a moment-wondered if illness, either their own or that of a loved one, wasn’t brought on as a punishment for sin?) In the book of Job, his [...]

Sabbath: Discipling the Sick
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gless05

Read for This Week’s Study: Isa. 53:4, Matt. 8:17, Mark 2:1-12, Phil. 4:4-9, 1 John 3:20-22, John 11:37-44.

Memory Text: Large crowds came to him, bringing the lame, the blind, the crippled, the mute, and many others, and laid them at his feet; and he healed them. The people were amazed when they saw the mute speaking, the crippled made well, the lame walking and the blind seeing. And they praised the God of Israel. (Matthew 15:30-31, NIV)

During His ministry, Jesus [...]

Inside Story: Jonathan’s Wish
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Jonathan is a quiet boy with a shy smile. He lives in a small village in southern Mexico.

One day his neighbor, Tia Maria, invited Jonathan to go to Sabbath School with her. Jonathan had never been to church before. His mother said he could go, so he agreed.

On Sabbath Jonathan and Tia Maria walked to church. He liked Sabbath School, especially the mission story about children from faraway lands.

When he returned home, Jonathan told his mother what he had learned. [...]

Friday: Further Study: Discipling Children
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studymore

Further Study: Read Ellen G. White, “Blessing the Children,” pp. 511-517; “The Temple Cleansed Again,” p. 592, in The Desire of Ages. “Baptism”, pp. 93-95, in Testimonies for the Church, vol. 6; “Bible Teaching and Study,” pp. 185-186 in Education.

“It is still true that children are the most susceptible to the teachings of the gospel; their hearts are open to divine influences, and strong to retain the lessons received. The little children may be Christians, having an experience in accordance [...]

How Did the Boy Jesus Learn the Scriptures?
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http://www.goodsalt.com/details/pppas0506.html?r=ssnet

Since this interesting question came up in our comments, I did a little research. And it leads me to conclude that the contemporaries of Christ were far more literate than we like to give them credit for.

Now I’m not an expert in history or biblical languages, nor a mathematician, but I’m thinking that we can draw a few deductions from the biblical story and other sources. The Bible demonstrates that Christ had an intimate knowledge of the Scriptures as early [...]

Trustworthy People Don’t Ask You to Trust Them
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While flipping through the channels on my TV the other day, I ran across a “law and order” show in which a detective was saying how abusers always seek the trust of the person they want to abuse. I have heard similar things in pastor group meetings, and this has prompted me to share what little common sense I have on the matter.

If someone is trying to get you to trust them, be suspicious. Trustworthy people don’t need to ask [...]

04: Discipling Children – Thought Starters
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Image © Providence Collection from GoodSalt.com

[Thought questions for Discipling Children January 22, 2014

1. The Children’s Ministry. Do you remember special church times just for children? Sabbath school in a children’s division? Story time? Vacation Bible School? Or maybe even children’s church? How important is discipling children in your church family? In your home? By adding “in” after the “n” in “discipling,” have we spelled out a word for something we need more of for our children? Or not?

2. The Hebrew child. Can [...]

Thursday: Suffer the Little Children
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Image © Phil McKay from GoodSalt.com

Read Mark 10:13-16. How does Christ’s acceptance of children facilitate their acceptance of Him? How should His rebuke of the disciples be understood? What must we take away from this account for ourselves and how we relate to children?

Image © Phil McKay from GoodSalt.com

Surely Christ’s disciples were well-intentioned, although ignorant. They attempted to protect His valuable time, preserving His energy for more important matters. How greatly they misunderstood what Jesus wanted them to know.

Imagine being forsaken by gruff adults [...]