Know Your Bible

VOL. 12                                                                                                                          July 28, 2013                                                                                                                            NO. 25



One of the areas of our work that needs continual attention is Bible classes. We need to be concerned that each class has the equipment essential to doing a good job. Of vital importance are the teaching materials provided - they must be suited to the age group and sound in content with emphasis placed on the Word of God as the source of authority in spiritual matters. And then we need to recognize that it is difficult for a class to rise above the one doing the teaching. The devotion that teachers have, their diligence in study, etc., will be reflected in those they endeavor to teach. Here are some marks of a good teacher:

1. A GOOD TEACHER WORSHIPS. He/she attends all services, both on Lord's day and mid-week unless unavoidably hindered.

2. A GOOD TEACHER PREPARES. He/she spends hours in fresh study of the subject, arrives before the students begin coming, sees that the room is in readiness.

3. A GOOD TEACHER SETS A GOOD EXAMPLE. He/she lives consistently, shuns evil, refuses to compromise truth, never does anything that might encourage students to get involved in wrong.

4. A GOOD TEACHER VISITS. He/she contacts absentees, new pupils and prospective pupils personally.

5. A GOOD TEACHER USES THE BIBLE IN SUCH A WAY THAT THE LESSON IS BIBLE-CENTERED. He/she makes the student feel at home with God's word.

6. A GOOD TEACHER MAINTAINS ORDER IN THE CLASSROOM AT ALL TIMES. He/she exercises discipline when necessary. One unruly student will not be allowed to destroy learning environment. 

---Aude McKee

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As the young child was walking through the shopping mall with his mother, he got very excited and began shouting, "That's my teacher! That's my teacher!" The teacher was accustomed to such salutations from her young students. She waved at the child and gave the embarrassed mother an understanding smile. The child could hardly wait to get home to tell his friends about seeing his teacher at the mall. He just could not imagine his teacher going shopping, just like a "real person".

"Be not many of you teachers, my brethren, knowing that we shall receive heavier judgment. For in many things we all stumble" (James 3:1-2a). Brethren expect some degree of faithfulness and maturity in the man who stands behind the rostrum and teaches the adult Bible class. At the same time, those students in the class well understand the distinction between maturity and sinless perfection. No matter who stands before the class to teach - he is just a man, subject to the same frailties and handicaps as others. If the teacher makes a slip of the tongue, or misses the point in a lesson, or even stumbles in his daily living - mature Christians can keep things in perspective while addressing the problem.

But what about the kids? When their Bible class teacher behaves carelessly or indifferently in regard to truth, the implications and consequences are severe. The child does not operate from a basis of spiritual maturity - he is in the process of acquiring it. The faith and zeal of the youngster can be shaken drastically by inconsistent and confusing behavior he sees in his teacher.

Why would a mature man or woman spend several hours preparing to teach the children about the importance of worship - and then the same teacher forsake the assembly on Sunday night? "Mom, where's my teacher tonight?" Why would a teacher emphasize the importance of "our gospel meeting" to a group of eager children, and then miss the meeting himself? And what would the little girl think, if after the Wednesday night lesson on modest apparel, she saw her teacher at the park on Saturday dressed quite immodestly? "Hey Mom, that's my ~teacher!"

"And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me: but whoso shall cause one of these little ones that believe on me to stumble, it is profitable for him that a great millstone should be hanged about his neck, and that he should be sunk in the depth of the sea" (Matthew 18:5-6) .

We are certainly blessed with some excellent teachers for the children’s Bible classes. Hours and hours are spent in lesson preparation. Let’s be mindful, however, that with all the attention given to preparing and delivering a lesson – there are some accompanying responsibilities which are quite significant. 

---David Thomley

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There are many views concerning the means by which people acquire faith. Some people say that the alien sinner is to pray for faith. Others may say that God miraculously strikes a person with faith, and they may cite how they received "theirs" one day in a cornfield. We need to consider what the Bible has to say on this subject realizing that the subjective feelings and speculations of men matter little.

The subject of how to acquire faith is very important because faith is very important. Hebrews 11:6 tells us that without faith it is impossible to please God. Further, John 3:16 says, "For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." Thus, since faith is essential, it is important to know how to acquire faith.

The teaching of the Scriptures on this subject is very clear. God's Word, the Bible, is where we acquire our faith. Romans 10:17 says, "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God." Furthermore, John 20:31 shows us the effect of the recorded miracles of Christ. It says, "But these are written that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God. . . ." In John 17, Jesus prayed for unity among his apostles. He stated, "Neither pray I for them alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word." Thus, according to Jesus, belief would come by the preaching of the Apostles. The conversion cases illustrate this point also. With the Corinthians, for example (Acts 18:8), it was a matter of them hearing, believing, and being baptized. (Note also: Acts 15:7, 11:13-14; Luke 8:12.)

Many do not have faith, or become weak in faith because they have not turned to or have turned away from the source of faith. That source is the Bible; it is the producer of our faith.

---Mike Johnson 

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Know Your Bible" is e-mailed weekly by the church of Christ which meets at 112 Roberts Avenue in Wise, Virginia. If you know of others who might benefit from the articles contained in this bulletin, we would be glad to have you submit their e-mail addresses and we will include them in next week's mailing. If you are receiving this bulletin and do not wish to continue to do so, please e-mail us with your desire to be removed from the mailing list and we will remove your address promptly. Continue to the bottom of this page and further instructions will be given as to how you may contact us.

--- E.R. Hall, Jr.





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