O how the mighty have fallen! Like the Israelites, our region has discovered what can happen when there are (“New York”) Giants in the land. And Bill (“Joshua”) Belichick wasn’t able to inspire them to be “strong and courageous” enough. I won’t comment publicly anywhere else, so I thought I’d sneak it in here. 18-1 never looked so bad.

Week number SIX! I didn’t hear from anyone this week. I hope you are all still reading. Get through those plagues (in Exodus). Deliverance is coming!

Category 1 – NT – Gospels

  • Day 1 – Matthew 12:38-50
  • Day 2 – Matthew 13:1-23
  • Day 3 – Matthew 13:24-43
  • Day 4 – Matthew 13:44-58
  • Day 5 – Matthew 14:1-21
  • Day 6 – Matthew 14:22-36

For category 1 readers , your question for possible reflection, application and comment on the blog is this: Jesus gave His disciples an interesting response to their question, “Why are you teaching in parables?” (Matthew 13:10ff). What was Jesus’ stated motive for teaching in this fashion, and what can we learn and apply in regard to our own ministry among the lost?

Category 2 – NT History & Epistles

  • Day 1 – Acts 18:1-17
  • Day 2 – Acts 18:18-28
  • Day 3 – Acts 19:1-22
  • Day 4 – Acts 19:23-41
  • Day 5 – Acts 20:1-12
  • Day 6 – Acts 20:13-38

For category 2 readers , your question for possible reflection, application and comment on the blog is this: The story of Apollos reminds us that we can know the truth, but not know it as well as we should. What practical steps (other than our Bible reading plan) could you take to know “the way of God more accurately?”

Category 3 – OT Poetry & Wisdom

  • Day 1 – Psalm 29
  • Day 2 – Psalm 30
  • Day 3 – Psalm 31
  • Day 4 – Psalm 32
  • Day 5 – Psalm 33
  • Day 6 – Psalm 34

For category 3 readers, your question for possible reflection, application and comment on the blog is this: Consider from Psalm 32 the list of effects that David says unconfessed sin might have in a believer’s life. Have you ever experienced such things, and how has forgiveness and a cleansed conscience brought relief? As you recall, be sure to praise the Lord for those times of refreshing.

Category 4 – OT Historical & Prophetic

  • Day 1 – Exodus 16-18
  • Day 2 – Exodus 19-20
  • Day 3 – Exodus 21-23
  • Day 4 – Exodus 24-26
  • Day 5 – Exodus 27-29
  • Day 6 – Exodus 30-31

For category 4 readers, your question for possible reflection, application and comment on the blog is this: Here is a hard one…In 1 Corinithians 10:1-4 we read that the water from the rock (as Paul says) was Christ. What does Paul mean? How does this relate to our lives (i.e., in what ways do we experience the same provision, and how should we respond to God as a result)?

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About Brian Sayers

Brian has been an elder, and staff pastor, at Christ Community Church since September of 2000. He is a 1998 graduate of The Master's Seminary (M.Div).

4 Comments

  1. BethC on February 12, 2008 at 6:41 am

    On the Matthew question- speaking in parables was a judgement. Jesus knew that they were not ones given to Him by the Father. He interpreted his parables to His disciples, but He was basically teaching nonsense to the religious leaders and multitudes since they had already rejected Him. Can we apply this? I don’t think so. We don’t know who will be the elect. We can judge in the form of discernment and not throw pearls to swine, but we do not judge in the sense of condeming people to hell (Matthew 7). Only God condemns people to hell. I would say that no, we shouldn’t start speaking in parables. If Jesus doesn’t remove the blinders from a persons eyes we can bring them to the Bible show them the verses and it’s the same as us speaking in parables. I think we need to be as clear as possible. Only God knows who will understand and accept Him. We can, however, apply Matthew 7, and not preach the truth to people who are completely hostile towards it.

  2. BethC on February 12, 2008 at 7:12 am

    Apollos (my second choice for a name after Nehemiah!)- was a Greek who was raised in a Jewish culture and knew the OT scriptures better than the Jews did and was very good at debating them, yet he still was instructed in the new faith by Priscilla and Aquila. Besides reading the Bible, it’s helpful to learn about world history. This would even be helpful in sharing the gospel to Muslims as there is a lot of overlap of the OT and the Quoran. Learning about Jewish culture and biblical archeology is also helpful. I still feel so lost about OT history- dates, places, rulers etc. The other way of learning the way of God is being open to instruction by others. Apollos seemed to have his facts and history down, but it seem like he was still open to instruction by Priscilla and Aquila on how to live out his faith. Perhaps, we can have superior intellectual knowledge, but still need to seek out other’s help in identifying sin in our life. We can follow the example of others around us in how to live out our faith and develop a heart for Christ.

  3. Brian Sayers on February 15, 2008 at 12:59 pm

    I agree with Beth, that there is a parallel to Jesus’ teaching in parables and our responsibility to not cast our pearls of truth to the pigs, or to give what is holy to dogs (Matthew 7). It is hard to measure at times what constitutes a “pig” or a “dog,” but often it makes itself clear when they are turning and tearing you to pieces as Jesus said they often would.

    Apollos was a humble man, despite his incredible giftedness. He was always willing to learn, and he was not too proud to learn from anyone. On a practical level, he subjected himself to instruction from other believers–Aquilla and Priscilla. We should make every effort to be learning from those around us (teaching opportunities, like ABF and home fellowships), as well as learning as much as possible from those who have gone before us (tapes, MP3s and good books–especially the older books, that have stood the test of time, and proven they are just modern fads).

  4. Brian Sayers on February 15, 2008 at 1:01 pm

    How about making a goal of reading one chapter a week from a good Christian book. If you did this, you would probably have read 3-5 good books a year. Perhaps you should “fast” from email and internet one night/day a week in order to free up the time for this reading.

    Just a thought
    Brian

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