MAY 15: BOLD

By Ken R. Speakman
Member, Tulip Grove Baptist Church, Old Hickory

Sunday School Lessons explore the bibleFocal Passage: Acts 9:36-43

As we continue our study of Acts 9, we find Peter performing two miracles – he heals Aeneas and raises Dorcas from the dead. During the events of Saul’s conversion, Peter has been engaged in an itinerant ministry with John (Acts 8:25), and finds himself visiting the believers in Lydda, a city close to Jerusalem.  It’s possible this area had been evangelized by converts at Pentecost, or by believers who had been scattered during the great persecution. Philip could have ministered there when leaving the Ethiopian eunuch (Acts 8:40). [Read more…]

Facebooktwittermail

MAY 15: REDEEMED FROM DEVASTATING FAILURE

By Gene Price
Pastor, Tumbling Creek Baptist Church, Gleason

Sunday School Lesson Bible Studies For LifeFocal Passage: Luke 22:54-62; Acts 4:8-13

At the Olympic Games every four years, 90 percent of the best athletes in the world do not win a medal. They try but they fail. Likewise, the Bible records many people who failed. Oftentimes we fail at the point of our greatest strength. The Bible says that Moses was a meek man, yet he lost his temper and struck the rock. Abraham was called the father of faith, but he lied twice, stating that Sarah was not his wife. David was called a man after God’s own heart, yet he commited adultery. [Read more…]

Facebooktwittermail

MAY 8: CONVERTED

By Ken R. Speakman
Member, Tulip Grove Baptist Church, Old Hickory

Sunday School Lessons explore the bibleFocal Passage: Acts 9:3-9, 15-20

In Acts, chapter 9, the Scripture focuses on a zealous young Pharisee named Saul. He is mentioned in chapter 8 as the young man who guarded the robes of those who stoned Stephen. Saul had studied under the brilliant Pharisee scholar Gamaliel. Gamaliel was convinced that the apostles should be left alone (5:34). Saul disagreed and considered them a threat to Judaism and felt they were a blasphemy against the God of Abraham. Saul felt Christians must be exterminated and “The Way” (the earliest designation for Christians) stamped out.  Chapter 9 opens with, “Saul was still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord.” [Read more…]

Facebooktwittermail

MAY 1: OBEDIENT

By Ken R. Speakman
Member, Tulip Grove Baptist Church, Old Hickory

Sunday School Lessons explore the bibleFocal Passage: Acts 8:26-31, 35-39

The mandate of Acts 1:8 which Jesus gave the disciples is about to begin. Following the martyrdom of Stephen, persecution of the Jerusalem church intensified. Believers (except the apostles) flee Jerusalem for their lives into the nearby regions of Judea and Samaria. [Read more…]

Facebooktwittermail

APR. 24: SELFLESS

By Ken R. Speakman
Member, Tulip Grove Baptist Church, Old Hickory

Sunday School Lessons explore the bibleFocal Passage: Acts 6:1-10

The Jerusalem church was experiencing growing pains that impacted the apostles’ ministry.  The membership of the church had grown into the thousands and the staff of only 12 found it difficult to attend to the needs of so many. The first dissension in the church arises.

There were two kinds of Jews in the early church. Our text names them as Hellenistic Jews and Hebrew Jews. The Hebrew Jews were descendants of the faithful Jews who left Babylon under the leadership of Ezra and Nehemiah. They endured the difficulties of rebuilding Jerusalem. They were committed to the Hebrew Scriptures and spoke Hebrew and Aramaic. The Hellenistic Jews descended from Jews who had chosen, for whatever reason, to live outside the land of Palestine. They were still Jews, but they spoke Greek and absorbed some of the Greek culture into their lifestyle. [Read more…]

Facebooktwittermail

APR. 17: FAITHFUL

By Ken R. Speakman
Member, Tulip Grove Baptist Church, Old Hickory

Sunday School Lessons explore the bibleFocal Passage: Acts 5:25-35, 38-42

As word about the deaths of Ananias and Sapphira spread, a wave of godly fear swept over the church, which now has great power and great fear. Growth continued and believers were now meeting regularly at the Temple and house to house. God gave the apostles power to perform great miracles and many believed, both men and women. Crowds came from villages surrounding Jerusalem and began to bring their sick to the apostles for healing (vv. 15-16).

The center of the apostles’ message was the Lord Jesus Christ, the very name the Sanhedrin had condemned and the person they had crucified. Because of the great success the apostles were having, the high priest and the officials were filled with jealousy. They had commanded Peter and John not to mention the name of Jesus but they obeyed the Lord and not man. They arrested the apostles and put them in jail, but an angel miraculously delivered them without unlocking the doors or alerting the guards.   [Read more…]

Facebooktwittermail

APR. 10: INTEGRITY

By Ken R. Speakman
Member, Tulip Grove Baptist Church, Old Hickory

Sunday School Lessons explore the bibleFocal Passage: Acts 4:36-37; 5:1-11

In our last study we observed Peter and John standing before the Sanhedrin with the healed beggar. They had been commanded not to speak of Jesus. They went to the church and told their story. The church broke out in a spontaneous time of prayer (Acts 4:23).

The church was growing in spirit and number and encountered the first dose of persecution when Peter and John healed the lame beggar. The apostle’s display of courage before the entire counsel of Jewish religious leaders greatly encouraged the church. The church was joyful and their contagious spirit attracted many to join them. [Read more…]

Facebooktwittermail

APR. 3: COURAGEOUS

By Ken R. Speakman
Member, Tulip Grove Baptist Church, Old Hickory

Sunday School Lessons explore the bibleFocal Passage: Acts 4:1-13

We begin our lesson in chapter 4 by turning our attention to events of chapter 3. Peter and John are about to enter the temple when they encounter a lame beggar who has been lame since birth. In the name of Jesus the beggar is healed and begins to leap and jump. This story weaves its way through the middle of chapter 4. As a result of this beggar’s conversion, the persecution of the early church begins.

Just as the Old Testament prophets were able to authenticate themselves through miracles, so the New Testament church period opened with apostles whom Christ has given power to heal (Matthew 10:8). These miracles were performed to demonstrate the power of the gospel and bring glory to the Lord Jesus. After seeing the miracle of healing the lame beggar, more than 5,000 believed.   [Read more…]

Facebooktwittermail

MAR. 20: UNIFIED

By Ken R. Speakman
Member, Tulip Grove Baptist Church, Old Hickory

Sunday School Lessons explore the bibleFocal Passage: Acts 2: 41-47

Speaking boldly under the power of the Holy Spirit, Peter challenged those who heard him to repent and show the sincerity of their decision by being baptized. He told the crowd that Jesus was the Messiah, God had raised Him from the grave and they had seen Him. Peter’s words pierced their hearts and they cried out, “what must we do?” Peter replied, “repent, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ.”

Verse 38 should not be used to teach salvation by baptism. Baptism comes as a result of salvation, and is a witness that one has accepted Christ. Verse 41 tells us that about 3,000 new believers were added to the church. What would the disciples do with them? How would they disciple them? They had no New Testament, no manuals, and no church organization. [Read more…]

Facebooktwittermail

MAR. 13: EMPOWERED

By Ken R. Speakman
Member, Tulip Grove Baptist Church, Old Hickory

Sunday School Lessons explore the bibleFocal Passage: Acts 2:1-15

Thousands jammed the streets of Jerusalem. Jewish law required all males living within 20 miles of Jerusalem to attend. Ordinary labor was prohibited during this national holiday, and all shops were closed. Many Jews had traveled from many other nations to stay for the Passover and Pentecost. Unknown to them, according to the divine plan of God, and the promise to the disciples, (Acts 1: 4-5), a new dispensation was only hours away. The third person of the Godhead would make His electrifying descent from the throne of heaven. Acts 2, is the story of that descent. [Read more…]

Facebooktwittermail