John: Lesson 3: Jesus’ Early Ministry: The Temple and Nicodemus (John 2:13-3:21)

Jesus Cleanses the Temple (John 2:13-25)   Excursus: One or Two Temple Cleansings? Matthew, Mark, and Luke all tell of Jesus cleansing the Temple: Matthew 21:12-13, Mark 11:15-17, and Luke 19:45-46.  John’s account, besides being much longer, differs in several ways:   John Other Gospel Accounts Refers to oxen and sheep Not mentioned Jesus uses […]

Unnoticed Connections in Scripture: Lesson 1: Creation

God’s First and Later Creational Acts Genesis 1:1 begins with bereshit bara, with a word order that doesn’t match the way we think in English: “beginning create.”  Bereshit always means the beginning of something, not the first in an absolute sense.  To express the first of something in an absolute sense, the Hebrew for this […]

John: Lesson 2: A Week of Witness: John 1:19-2:12

Day 1: John the Baptizer’s Witness Read John 1:19-23 John quoted Isaiah 40:3, revealing he was “making straight the way of the Lord.” What does John understand his role to be?   Read John 1:24-25 Malachi 4:5: “Remember the instruction of Moses my servant, the statutes and ordinances I commanded him at Horeb for all […]

John: Lesson 1, Introduction and Prologue

Introduction Author Early Christian tradition testifies to the Apostle John as the author of the Gospel of John, who was assisted by Prochurus as the scribe.  Irenaeus (180 AD), Clement of Alexandria (200 AD), and other early Christian writers all agree the Apostle John is the author of the 4th Gospel. John, the disciple of […]

Being Fully Human: Lesson 4

How Creation Shapes Our Understanding of Vocation In Lesson 1, we explored God creating us in His likeness and image.  Today, we examine this again, but this time to understand how God’s creation of us shapes our vocations of service.  Genesis 1:27-28: So God created mankind in his own image; in his own image God […]

The Parables of Jesus: Lesson 14: Two Parables in a Vineyard Setting

The Unusual Vineyard Owner: Matthew 19:30-20:16 Immediate Setting In Matthew 19:16, a man approached Jesus: “Teacher, what good must I do to gain eternal life?”  Jesus then brought up God’s Law (vs. 18-19), to which the man responded, “I have kept all these.”  So, Jesus told him something He knew he couldn’t do, “Go, sell […]

Being Fully Human: Lesson 3

In His Body, Christ Redeemed Us, Bringing Us into His Body To save us, Jesus became incarnate, which means the eternal God also became fully human by His human birth.  As both God and man, He considered it necessary to become a physical being to save us physical beings.  In His human nature, He became […]

The Parables of Jesus: Lesson 13: Two Parables on What Someone’s Prayer Reveals

The Parable of the Unjust Judge: Luke 18:1-8 Background in Luke Luke 17: 11-18: 8 is a significant unit focused on the “end times” with four major parts: Jesus heals the ten lepers: 17: 11-19, Jesus answers a question by some Pharisees about the coming of God’s Kingdom: 17:20-21, Jesus instructs His disciple on the […]

Being Fully Human: Lesson 2

Our Lord’s Physical Redemption Equals a Physical Salvation Last week, we learned the Hebrew term for “soul” [nephesh] or “spirit” [ruach] refers to the whole person as a living being.  Human beings live as souls—we do not “have” souls.  This association is so close we even find nephesh being used to refer to someone who […]

The Parables of Jesus: Lesson 12: Two Parables on Forgiveness

The Parable of the Two Debtors: Luke 7:36-50 Background in Luke Before Jesus tells this parable, we find an unnamed woman in the house of Simon the Pharisee.  This is early in Jesus’ public ministry.  She washes His feet with her tears and dries them with her hair, kissing His feet and anointing them. Though […]