Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Bible Study

     Yesterday I spent quite a bit of time on the internet looking for a good video commentary on Colossians.  We have been talking in The Gathering that our main purpose and desire is to be focused on Jesus, who He is, what He has done, what He says for us to do.  We have been thinking we need to be studying the Bible consistently to know these things.  Since Colossians has a wonderful passage that sums up who Christ is I thought that book might be the best place to begin, so I was trying to find some enlightening video teaching on it and other books of the Bible that we could watch and learn from as a group.
    Through searching I came upon this great resource:        
     The website says these sermons/commentaries are done by Dr. Bob Utley, a pastor in Texas, who, "as a local pastor, taught verse-by-verse through New Testament books on Sunday evenings and through Old Testament books on Wednesday evenings. All these teachings became the "Video and Audio Bible Commentaries" which are now available through this free website sponsored by Bible Lessons International."       
       What convinced me to listen to some of the sermons, though, was this comment:  "He approaches Bible teaching from an exegetical, verse-by-verse, historical- grammatical point of view. In addition, great effort is made to remove his, and our, social, cultural, experiential, and denominational biases. Bob tries to support his interpretation from the biblical text in one of six ways: (1) literary context; (2) historical setting of the biblical author; (3) word studies; (4) grammatical relationships; (5) parallel biblical passages; and (6) literary genres."  That sounds like the kind of teaching I need to hear and from which I could learn much.
     Country Guy and I downloaded and watched one of the sermons last night which we think could have been one of the best we've ever heard.  It is entitled, "The Bible is Eastern Literature." 
     We are thinking it would be a great one to watch at The Gathering Sunday night at 6:00.  (It seems our agenda may be changing--but didn't I say that might happen?)  We are thinking of doing the Mark Virkler series at a different time--possibly Wednesday nights--and then we could begin studying the Bible on Sunday nights.  Come hear Bob Utley Sunday night, if you can.  I think it will change your perspective on what it means to be a Christian and get you excited to study the Bible along with him as we watch other videos.

     Here is the passage on the supremacy of Christ which causes me to believe Colossians would be a great book to start with in our quest to better understand who He is.   Col. 1:15-20
    Christ is the visible image of the invisible God.
    He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation,
 for through him God created everything in the heavenly realms and on earth.
    He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see— such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world.
    Everything was created through him and for him.
 He existed before anything else, and he holds all creation together.
    Christ is also the head of the church, which is his body.
    He is the beginning, supreme over all who rise from the dead. 
So he is first in everything.
    For God in all his fullness was pleased to live in Christ, and through him God reconciled everything to himself.
    He made peace with everything in heaven and on earth by means of Christ’s blood on the cross.
      I couldn't resist adding verses 21 and 22 here because they tell us the great news that through Christ's sacrifice on the cross our relationship with God has been restored.  Hallelujah!!
   Col. 1:21,22. "This includes you who were once far away from God. You were his enemies, separated from him by your evil thoughts and actions.  Yet now he has reconciled you to himself through the death of Christ in his physical body. As a result, he has brought you into his own presence, and you are holy and blameless as you stand before him without a single fault."

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