Welcome to “Sunday SchoolSunday School”.  Each week we will highlight our Adult Class Sunday School Lesson for the upcoming week.  This site is designed to prepare you for the upcoming lesson, and give you greater insight into the Word of God.  Get ready to bestretched.  Get ready for an exciting  journey.  Get ready for a stir in your Soul.

 

Daily Scripture reading for the week is at the end of the page.           

 

                                                                                                                                                                                Dr. June Normil

 


 

 

                                            Unit 2 Study 9

                                        November 2, 2014

 

Study Scriptures for this week's Lesson: Matthew 13:24-30,36-43; 21:28-32; Mark 4:26-32; John 3:1-5

 

Key Verse: John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, Verily, I  say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God (KJV).

 

Central Truth: Followers of Jesus Christ are citizens of God's kingdom.

 

Our Focus: To highlight what Jesus said about the kingdom of God and live as citizens of the kingdom.

 

 

                                            Stories about the Kingdom

 

 

                                                                                         

Introducing the study

 

God's kingdom is at work in this world. He has a plan, and He is fulfilling it in spite of opposition from Satan and those who are under Satan's influence. All believers are a part of God's kingdom. It is important, then, for us to understand the dynamics of this kingdom and what it means to live as a citizen and servant of God. This week's study examines some of Jesus' teaching concerning the kingdom. Allow this study to help you understand how God is moving in the world, how He can enable you to remain spiritually strong in the face of evil, and how you can take part in the work of proclaiming His kingdom to those who need to hear. At the end of this study, you will be able to: (1). Understand what the kingdom of God is and why it is important. (2). Realize that each believer has a place in God's kingdom. (3). Desire to become involved in expanding God's kingdom.

 

Who Enters the Kingdom?

 

As Jesus began to perform miracles, people took notice. Nicodemus, a Pharisee, was especially interested in what Jesus was doing and teaching. He recognized that there was something supernatural about Jesus (see John 3:2). In his  curiosity, Nicodemus approached Jesus to discuss some theological issues. Jesus, however, bypassed Nicodemus's initial comment and revealed his greatest need: Nicodemus needed to be born again (verse 3). The kingdom of God is a spiritual kingdom, and we can only understand it through spiritual discernment and godly instruction (verse 3; 1 Corinthians 2:6). In order to begin to grasp truths of the kingdom, we must be born again. Being born again cleanses a person from the defilement of sin and makes him a new creation in Christ ( 2 Corinthians 5:17). No one  can enter God's kingdom without this new birth. Jesus further illustrated this teaching with a parable about two sons (Matthew 21:28-32). A Jewish son disobeying his father was a serious offense. Jesus' hearers would recoiled at the actions of this first son. But the first son realized the error of his ways, repented of his wrongs, and obeyed his father. The second son initially seemed like an obedient child. The word sir demonstrated respect. But at the end he showed no real intention of obeying his father. Jesus' query in verse 31 confronted the religious authorities with their lack of obedience to God. Conversely, prostitutes and tax collectors had rejected God throughout their lives. But when the heard the saving message of Christ, they turned to Him. The Jewish leaders claimed to be the obedient sons of God, yet their actions showed otherwise. Jesus' message is clear: Only those who repent of their sins, turn to God, and obey Him will enter His kingdom. No amount of good works or clean living can qualify us for citizenship.

 

[For Personal Reflection] "Are you born again? And how can you be sure of your status before God?"   

 

The Kingdom Grows

 

Jesus often used agricultural elements in His parables because the society in which He  lived was an agricultural society. People would have readily grasped His teachings. There is something mysterious about planting a seed. Farmers of Jesus' day did not understand how the seeds germinated and grew. The farmer in Mark 4:26-32 planted the seed but he could not make it grow. There is a growing cycle that culminates in the harvest. In the same way, we  might not understand everything concerning the growth of God's kingdom and His spiritual work in us. While we must cultivate a relationship with God by reading His Word, only He can produce spiritual growth within us. Not only   is the growth in God's kingdom a mystery, but it is also a miracle. While God's kingdom is eternal, the Church and its part in God's kingdom started small: Jesus and His twelve disciples. Yet  as these men faithfully proclaimed Christ after the Day of Pentecost, the Church began to grow exponentially. Three thousand accepted Christ as Savior on that day (Acts 2:41). Later, another five thousand also accepted Christ as  Savior (Acts 4:4). And the Church continues to grow with the expansion of God's kingdom. This growth occurs as people accept Christ as Savior and Leader of their lives. We can participate in tis growth when we surrender to God, asking Him to work through our lives to spread the gospel around the  world. The  work of evangelism is a fundamental way by which we serve in the kingdom of God.

 

[For Personal Reflection] How are you involved in helping God's kingdom grow? 

 

Christ Will Cleanse the Kingdom

 

While God's kingdom continues to grow, its growth does not come without opposition. Jesus used another agricultural illustration to teach this truth. The parable in Matthew 13:24-30 describes an enemy sabotaging a farmer's crop by sowing tares, or weeds, among the wheat. The servants would not have recognized this weed until it began to mature. as a result, they were puzzled concerning why this weed was there. Their first response was to pull the weed. But the farmer knew better. The roots of the weed were intertwined with the wheat, and pulling the weeds would damage the crop yield because some wheat plants would also be pulled. The time for destroying the weeds would come at harvest. As He explained the parable in verses 35-43, Jesus wanted His disciples to understand that even as the kingdom f God progress (verses 38-39). Satan, the evil enemy of the kingdom, would try everything possible to hinder God's  kingdom. Likewise, today the enemy is trying to destroy what God is doing in our world. It is vital that we reach out in love to those bound by sin. As we move closer to the time of God's judgment, we should express our concern about the spiritual condition of those around us through our actions as well as our attitudes. Satan's influence in this world is temporary; there is a coming judgment. Just as the farmer burned the weeds at harvest, God will punish those who rejected Him at the end of this present age. Hell is real. Verse 42 describes the horror of eternal judgment. Believers, however, will not experience this torment. God has a very different future in store for His people. As with many of Jesus' teachings, this parable includes a warning. we must listen closely to Him and obey His teachings if we are to avoid the judgment that is coming upon this world. Then, in spite of the spiritual challenges we face, let us keep our focus fixed upon the blessings of god's eternal kingdom. This is our greatest hope.

 

[For Personal reflection] How can you maintain your focus on Christ among all the evil in this world?

 

 Discipleship in Action

 

This week's study on God's kingdom may have helped you realize how God is working in the world to fulfill His plan. God's kingdom is an everlasting kingdom. Even though people oppose God, His kingdom will triumph. Perhaps you are facing opposition because of your faith in Jesus Christ. Ask God to help you respond with love toward those who oppose you. Pray that they, too, may find Christ as their Savior. Then ask God to equip you to share their Savior. Then ask God to equip you to share the gospel with them. Maybe, as you read this week's lesson, you realize that you are not part of God's kingdom; you have never accepted Christ as savior. You can do so today. repent by turning from your sins. Ask Him to be the Lord of your life, then follow Him wherever He leads.   
  

                                                                BLOOM WHERE YOU ARE PLANTED!                                                   

                          
 
 

 

 

 Monday               The kingdom Is the Lords.                 1 Chronicles 29:10-13

 

 

 

Tuesday               Christ's kingdom Foretold.                    Isaiah 9:2-7

 

 

 

Wednesday         The Indestructible Kingdom.              Daniel 2:36-45                                    

 

 

Thursday           Christ's Unending Kingdom.                    Luke 1:26-33                        

 

 

 

Friday                Future of the Kingdom                           1 Corinthians 15:20-28                    

 

 

 

Saturday           Receiving the Kingdom.                           Hebrews 12:22-29                          

 

   

 See You In Sunday School Next Week!!!! 

 

   

Copyright Reference:  Radiant Life, Volume 96 Number 1 Sep. Oct. Nov 2014 by Gospel Publishing House, 1445 N. Boonville Ave, Springfield, Mo  65802.

 

 

 

                                                                                                                                Dr. June Normil