by Meg@bluffparkbaptist.org | Thursday, November 19, 2015
We are taking the opportunity to declare December as “Sunday School Emphasis Month”. I know that many churches have changed the name and even times of Sunday morning Bible study. Some refer to it as “small groups” and maybe even stopped meeting on Sunday mornings; rather meeting at homes at night during the week. Is that a bad thing? Of course not. Anytime you open yourself up to God’s word good things can happen. But we do have to be careful not to lose sight of the importance of foundational Bible study. There is often big difference between small groups and Bible study. Let me explain.
Most small groups deal with discipleship. That’s good in so many ways; they take Christians deeper into God’s work and teach application and personal growth. We need those things…desperately. But Discipleship studies assume a foundation; a basic starting place from which to begin the journey. That’s where small group Bible study…AKA Sunday School…comes in.
Sunday School teaches the Bible from a theological point of view that dissects the scripture so that we can understand it from several points of view. As we got through a book of the Bible we hear of the author; of his culture and purposes for writing. We take a verse by verse look at what is written so that we can have a better understanding of what God is saying to us. It builds a strong and solid foundation. We can then build on that foundation through discipleship opportunities and can more easily decipher false doctrines that can creep into more generalized studies.
For example, a well-know speaker wrote that God would honor our faith by giving us what we ask for. He quoted a couple of bible verses, most notably John 15:7-8 (KJV) “ If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples”. Because I had studied the book of John closely, as you would more likely do in a Sunday School class, I knew he was misusing that verse in its application.
So make it a point to avail yourself of the opportunity we offer every Sunday morning to come and study the Bible. Be more knowledgeable so that you can become a better disciple.