Read John 8:48-59.
“Jesus said unto them, ‘Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am” (v. 58).
Every faith traces their history back to outstanding figures of the past. Abraham was often considered the “father” of the Jewish faith. Indeed, his willingness to heed God’s call (Gen. 12), his intimate intercession with God (Gen. 19), his obedient dedication to God (Gen. 22), were among the examples that caused him to be revered by the Jews. In the Hebrews 11 “Hall of Fame,” Abraham is mentioned for his faith. Although Abraham’s sacrifices and intercession were exemplary, he could not atone for “Adam’s fallen race.”
Renown and reputation does not make a redeemer! While the Jews sought and looked forward to a “rescuer,” Jesus Christ came to be the Redeemer. He came to provide the atonement needed to bring “whosoever will” into an “at-one-ment” relationship with God. In many respects Abraham provided an example of faithful service, but Jesus Christ offers us living faith so that we can be a part of “the family of God!” While remembering Abraham may be inspirational, turning to Jesus Christ is transforming! Truly the Son of God has no equal! (Rodney Stearns)
“Great God, how infinite art Thou!
How poor and weak we are!
Let the whole race of creatures bow,
And pay their praise to Thee.”
“Greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world”(I John 4:4).
Focus Texr: Hebrews 1:1-14
Central Trust: Jesus Christ is God's Son and our Savior.
Objective: By the end of this lesson my students should be able to relate basic information concerning the Book of Hebrews.
I. Expressing the Father (Hebrews 1:1-3)
II. Exalted Above Angels (Hebrews 1:4-8)
III. Enduring Forever (Hebrews 1:9-14)
What prompted this woman to go to such an extreme effort to touch the hem of Jesus’ garment (see Luke 8:48)? What does this example teach us about genuine faith? Is faith something passive? Or does it manifest as something active? Explain the difference between these two different ways of understanding faith.
The Epistle of James has a lot to say about faith, especially in chapter 2. James summarizes his teaching on faith in 2:18 where he says, "shew me they faith without works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works." James seems to be answering the question posed in our lesson by saying that genuine faith is active - that to say we have faith and not act on the basis of that faith is a contradiction. When I describe myself as a "believer in Christ," I am saying that my faith in Christ is the organizing principle of my life. But even then, faith is not passive. Faith in God is a constant source of spiritual motivation - a force that compels the Christian to action that demonstrates faith. James seems to be saying that if we are not acting on our faith, we likely do not have any. (Gordon Snider)
Read Luke 8:40-42, 49-58
“And her spirit came again, and she arose straightway: and he commanded to give her meat” (v. 55).
Jairus’ daughter was just entering into young womanhood, and now she was dead. Mocking Jairus for bringing Jesus to his home to heal his daughter, the mourners were loudly scornful of Jesus. They had no respect for the Lord or His power. The mockery did not hinder Jesus’ power. Out of the public eye yet in the presence of her parents and the disciples Peter, James, and John; Jesus touched the maiden’s hand and called her to arise. Jesus honored Jairus’ faith and restored life to his daughter.
According to established Jewish traditions, Jesus should have been considered “unclean” and to have lost His spiritual power because of being touched by the woman with the issue of blood. Yet Jesus had not lost any of His spiritual power; He remained undefiled, the pure and sinless Son of God able to raise Jairus’s daughter from death by the touch of His hand. (LeAnn Davison)
The crowd laughed at Him in their unbelief
wallowing in their deep sorrow and grief.
Then touching her hand as she lay on the bed
….. a resurrection miracle took place.
The life-giving Spirit quickened her soul
and she stood before them alive and whole.
Taken from Talitha, cumi by Royston
When the world says all is lost, and there is no hope, Jesus says, “Have Faith and believe.”
Focus Text: Luke 8:41-55
CENTRAL TRUTH: The touch of Jesus upon our lives can enable us to have faith in His provision for our need.
OBJECTIVE: By the end of this lesson my students should be able to identify needs which they should trust God to supply.
I. A Faith That Calls for Help (Luke 8:41, 42)
II. A Faith That Acts (Luke 8:43-48)
III. A Faith That Is Rewarded (Luke 8:49-55)
One of the discussion questions for today is, "In what do people place their final or ultimate faith and trust?" This post is designed to offer a possible answer to that question.
In today's lesson, Pilate seems to places his ultimate trust in power - the ability to control. Another way of wording the same truth is that Pilate placed ultimate trust in his own self-sufficiency. Many people still do the same. "I don't need any help" seems to be ingrained in the American psyche - the idea that "I can pull myself up by my own bootstraps."
Another common point of trust is our own intellect. Maybe it is formal education, but more often people trust in their own logic or ingenuity. For such a person, there is no problem they cannot solve; no dilemma they cannot wiggle out of. You might refer to them as the "Teflon kid" - they are convinced that nothing can stick to them!
Some people trust their own experience. They feel they have been through it all, and they have the answers to their own or anyone else's situation.
Our lesson today shows that if place ultimate trust in anything other they God, we are sure to be disappointed. "The arm of flesh will fail you; you dare not trust your own" (George Duffield).
Gordon L Snider
Director of Publications for Herald & Banner Press