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 1 Study 3

                                        December 21, 2014

 

Study Scriptures for this week's Lesson: Luke 2:1-40

 

Key Verse: Luke 2:11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord (KJV).

 

Central Truth: Jesus was born to be the Savior of the world.

 

Our Focus: To examine the events surrounding Christ's birth and accept Him as Savior.

 

 

                                            The Savior Is Born

 

 

                                                                                         

Introducing the study

 

Christ's birth is celebrated around the globe. Though clouded by materialism and secularism, the story is heralded through all forms of media as the world takes notice once again of this pivotal moment in history. This study examines both the glorious majesty and the profound humility of Christ's birth. The divine Son of God assumed lowly human form on our behalf. Truly it is the greatest story ever told. But God did not send His Son to give the world a heartwarming story. Rather He sent His Son to  redeem the world from sin. The role of God's people is to convey that message and help the world realize that they can receive no greater gift than the Christ of Christmas. At the end of this study, you will be able to: (1). explain the circumstances and significance surrounding Jesus' humble birth. (2). Rejoice in the wonder of the announcement of Christ's birth to the shepherds and all the world. (3). Convey to others the message of God's redemptive purpose in sending His Son to the earth.

 

Humble Birth

 

For Mary and Joseph, the timing of Caesar Augustus's decree to take a census was anything but ideal (Luke 2:1-5). Making an eighty-mile journey over rugged terrain would not have been a pleasant prospect with Mary's pregnancy at full term. Yet, as head of the household, Joseph was required to travel to his ancestral home of Bethlehem to be registered. Events were shaping up to fulfill Micah's prophecy that the Messiah would be born in Bethlehem given some 700 years before (see Micah 5:2). When Joseph and Mary reached Bethlehem, Luke records that the time for Mary to give birth had arrived (verse 6). Due to the throngs of people in town for the census, there was no place for them to stay. Mary and Joseph's only option was a humble stable--possibly a cave being utilized as a place to house animals. There, the Savior of the world was born. In their situation, Mary didn't even have a midwife attending the birth. So she wrapped the Christ child in strips of cloth and laid Him in  a manager. It's hard to imagine a more humble beginning for the Savior.

 

[For Personal Reflection] "What are some specific events you can recall as being critical to fulfilling God's plan in your life?" 

 

Angelic Announcement

 

While Jesus was born in humble, common circumstances, the announcement of His birth in Bethlehem was anything but common. As a band of shepherds kept watch over their sheep at night, the angel of the Lord suddenly appeared and God's glory flooded the landscape (Luke 2:8-9). Needless to say, the shepherds were terrified! But they had no reason to be fearful. This announcement proved to be the best news the world would ever receive: The Messiah, Christ the Lord, the Savior of the world, had been born. Then the heavens burst forth with the praise of an angelic choir (verses 10-14). The shepherds hastened to Bethlehem to see for themselves what had happened, and quickly learned that the message was true. There was the newborn Savior in a manger (verses 15-16).The scene was true to the mission of the Lord. He would be Savior of all. And what did the shepherds do with the news? They swiftly began telling everyone they encountered about  the Child, and, not surprisingly, the hearers were astonished (verses 17-20). The shepherds were willing witnesses to the advent of God's greatest gift. Meanwhile, Mary pondered and treasured in her heart all that had occurred. She was playing a central role in fulfillment of God's great plan. In the same way, we may find ourselves at a loss over what God is doing all around us. We can treasure the events in our heart, and one day, God will show us what He  has done in our lives.

 

[For Personal Reflection] How does Christ's birth affect your approach to Christmas?

 

Seeing God's Salvation

 

In accordance with the Law, Jesus was presented at the temple in Jerusalem for the purification offering (Luke 2:21-24). Their humble circumstances were reflected in the presentation of doves and pigeons, the offering of the poor. As the new parents approached the temple, an aged man named Simeon had been led by the Spirit to enter the temple (see verses 25-32). On this day, the promise he'd received--that he would one day see the Messiah--was realized. However, he foresaw both the glory of Christ's work of redemption, as well as the harsh reality of His sacrifice. Simeon reminds us that the joy of Christmas is tinged with the sober reality of what our Savior sacrificed for us. Simeon also provides us today with a powerful example of tenacious faith and hope. He clung to the promises of God, even as many years passed before those promises came into fulfillment. Sadly, some Christians today become discouraged by ungodliness and spiritual need that surrounds them. They might even struggle with the hope of a spiritual awakening that would bring multitudes to Christ. Yet we cannot lose sight of the reality that God is at work in the world. Let us hold to the conviction that a powerful move of the Holy Spirit will take place before Christ returns, resulting in a great harvest of souls. We must continue to pray and work to the end. Also in the temple area was a widow and prophetess named Anna (verses 32-38). She, too, understood that this was no ordinary child. Her response to the Savior was one that we all are wise to emulate. She burst into praise, giving glory to God for His great gift. Like Anna, all who know the Christ of Christmas as Lord and Savior are commissioned to respond to Him in like manner. Our hearts ought to be filled with worship and praise. Jesus, our Redeemer, has come. Our redemption has been made possible, and through Christ we find the matchless hope of being spared God's judgment for our sin. Because of Jesus, we receive eternal life through God's indescribable mercy. That is the message of Christmas! 

 

[For Personal reflection] How would you described the significance of Christ's birth to an unbeliever?

 

 Discipleship in Action

 

As you experience the joy and wonder of the Christmas season, make an effort to reflect on God's mission in sending His Son. Examine the biblical background of His birth. Let the significance of the season settle into your heart. Then, as you have opportunity, convey that significance to others in your Christmas gatherings. The people in the Christmas story can show us how to respond. Like Mary, we  can wonder at what God has done in us because of Christ. Just as Simeon and Anna rejoiced that the Messiah had come, bringing light to Jews and Gentiles alike, we can rejoice and worship God for His indescribable gift. And like the shepherds, we can tell others the gospel in the Christmas story--God sent His Son in human form to become our Savior. 
  

                                                                REJOICE, SALVATION IS HERE!                                                   

                          
 
 

 

 

 Monday               God's Anointed Son.                              Psalm 2:1-12

 

 

 

Tuesday               Sure Prophecy.                                        Isaiah 9:2-7

 

 

 

Wednesday        Source of Our Peace.                              Isaiah 53:1-5              

 

 

Thursday           Virgin Birth.                                              Matthew 1:18-25                     

 

 

 

Friday                 Cause for Rejoicing.                               Matthew 2:1-11                

 

 

 

Saturday            Miraculous Conception Foretold.           Luke 1:26-35                                             

 

   

 See You In Sunday School Next Week!!!! 

 

   

Copyright Reference:  Radiant Life, Volume 96 Number 2 Dec. Jan. Feb 2014-15 by Gospel Publishing House, 1445 N. Boonville Ave, Springfield, Mo  65802.

 

 

 

                                                                                                                                Dr. June Normil