MAR. 26: MORE THAN A PROPHET?

By Charles D. Earl
Former Director of Missions, Holston Valley Baptist Assoc., Rogersville

Sunday School Lessons explore the bibleFocal Passage: Matthew 21:1-11

Our text for this fourth lesson in a series of 13 is the first 11 verses of Matthew 21, and the subject is “More than a Prophet?”  As we study the world’s religions we find that many of them acknowledge Christ as a great prophet. Judaism, Islam, and several others admit that Christ was a great prophet and have admiration and respect for Him. But those of us who know Him and claim Him as Savior know that He is more, far more than just a great prophet. We know He is Jesus Christ, Son of the living God. We know Him as our Lord and Savior.  [Read more…]

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MAR. 26: VICTORIOUS FAITH

By Mark D. Proctor
Pastor, Highland Park Baptist Church, Columbia

Sunday School Lesson Bible Studies For LifeFocal Passage: Hebrews 11:1-6

Curious, isn’t it, that the book of the Bible that encourages believers to have faith based on evidence of things not seen is itself evidence of an author not known? The writer of Hebrews uses tactile terms to give believers hope that true faith — concrete faith — pleases God and writes this passage to show that while we enjoy its benefits, concrete faith is mixed, poured, finished, and cured by God.

Engineers know that the key to strong concrete is getting the right recipe — the mix of cement, aggregate, sand, and water. It’s called slurry. The right slurry, poured into well-constructed forms, and finished and cured correctly results in strong concrete.  [Read more…]

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MAR. 19: WHAT IS REQUIRED?

By Charles D. Earl
Former Director of Missions, Holston Valley Baptist Assoc., Rogersville

Sunday School Lessons explore the bibleFocal Passage: Matthew 19:16-26

Our lesson title does not tell us what the “what” is talking about.  That is, what is required for what?  However, as we begin studying the text we soon discover that the “what” is discussing what is required to be saved. Verse 16 tells us that a man approaches Jesus and asks Him the question, “Good Master, what good thing must I do, that I may have eternal life?” Ah, that’s what the “what” wants to know. Let us examine the answer Jesus gives this man. [Read more…]

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MAR. 19: VICTORY OVER SIN

By Mark D. Proctor
Pastor, Highland Park Baptist Church, Columbia

Sunday School Lesson Bible Studies For LifeFocal Passage: Romans 6:4-14

Sin might be rendered powerless. Dead to sin. Sin will not rule over you. Treat yourself to a study of Romans 6 by picking out phrases such as these that let you off the hook. What if sin couldn’t touch you? What if Satan the great puppeteer could pull the strings but the marionette didn’t dance? Paul describes just such a life — a life married to Christ so completely that our everyday actions are not governed by Satan, not even by us, but by the power of Christ.  But how? “How” is the reason pastors’ counseling calendars are filled to overflowing with those seeking freedom from the day to day slavery to secret sin. How do we escape? [Read more…]

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MAR. 12: IS JESUS FULLY GOD?

By Charles D. Earl
Former Director of Missions, Holston Valley Baptist Assoc., Rogersville

Sunday School Lessons explore the bibleFocal Passage: Matthew 17:1-13

Our text in Matthew 17 begins with the words that introduce to us one of the most wonderful and most inspirational events in the whole New Testament. This event in the life of Jesus happens after He has had many, many opportunities of teaching. He uses in these teaching periods probably His most favorite teaching tool which, of course, was telling parables. He also has worked several miracles, among which is the healing of the centurion’s servant, Jairus’ daughter.  Many who were blind had received their sight. During this interim period Jesus had also called His disciples and sent them forth to preach and to heal.   [Read more…]

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MAR. 12: VICTORIOUS HOPE

By Mark Proctor
Pastor, Highland Park Baptist Church, Columbia

Sunday School Lesson Bible Studies For LifeFocal Passage: Matthew 8:5-13

Hope. Everyone craves it. The little leaguer says, “I hope we win the game” but has no way of knowing the outcome. Hope to this little hitter is little more than a dream.  But a believer’s hope is broader and wider still. Isaiah prophesied 700 years before Christ that, “… the gentiles will trust in his name” (Matthew 12:21). And in the story of the healing of the centurion’s servant in Matthew 8, we see that very thing — a gentile, the centurion, trusting in Christ’s name and authority and willingness to heal. And he demonstrated that hope with his feet, his ears, and his lips. [Read more…]

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MAR. 5: WHO IS JESUS?

By Charles Earl
Former Director of Missions, Holston Valley Baptist Assoc., Rogersville

Sunday School Lessons explore the bibleFocal Passage: Matthew 16:13-28

Since all of our lessons are taken from the Gospel of Matthew we need to look briefly at this man who wrote the book. The name Matthew means “gift from God.” Matthew, of course, was a Jew, and he identifies himself in Matthew 10:3 as “Matthew the tax collector.” On first blush it seems somewhat incongruous to us that a tax collector would choose to refer to himself as a tax collector of the Roman government.  [Read more…]

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MAR. 5: JESUS, OUR VICTOR

By Mark Proctor
Pastor, Highland Park Baptist Church, Columbia

Sunday School Lesson Bible Studies For LifeFocal Passage:  Revelation 1:12-20

What does Jesus look like in your church?  Some might picture a benevolent lover of children, with a large lap and a tender heart.  Others might envision a healer, frequenting the hospitals, or a teacher, majestically ensconced in the pulpit.  The apostle John was “in the spirit on the Lord’s day” while on Patmos and got the chance that you and I have never had — he got to see Jesus.  He gives us two accounts in Revelation of Jesus, one in chapter 19 of the millennial king Jesus — a future Jesus — and this one in chapter 1 of the present day Jesus, the Christ of the Church.  [Read more…]

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FEB. 26: REDEEMED AND SECURE

By Mark Proctor
Pastor, Highland Park Baptist Church, Columbia

Sunday School Lessons explore the bibleFocal Passage: Ruth 3:8-13; 4:13-17

I love the story of the traveler who pulled his car into a gas station in Kentucky and asked the attendant how far it was to Glasgow.  “28,465 miles,” was the reply.  “I didn’t mean Glasgow, Scotland.  I meant Glasgow, Kentucky!”  “So did I” said the attendant.  “In the direction you’re headed, it’s 28,465 miles.  If  you’ll turn around and go the other direction, it’s only 11 miles!”  The Bible teaches a more serious version of this story: “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death” (Proverbs 14:12 ESV). [Read more…]

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FEB. 26: GIVING WITH JOY

By Justin Randolph
Pastor, Zion Hill Baptist Church, Sevierville

Sunday School Lesson Bible Studies For LifeFocal Passage: Philippians 4:10-20

More is the word that perhaps best characterizes our society — more wealth, more luxury, more significance, more gizmos, and more love.  Sometimes we do not even know what we need more of, we just know we want more. It seems we are always in search of contentment, but never quite finding it.   [Read more…]

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