1-3-1-The Life of Christ
This course is to introduce you to complex theological issues, and the entire range of pastoral ministries.
In this semester you will find 13-2 part lessons introducing you to the life of Jesus Christ.
You will need one or more translations of the Bible.
lesson 1 – Part 1
These Goals are to give you an idea of what you will be able to do in this lesson once you have finished this part.
On completing this part you should be able to achieve the following goals.
1.Explain the importance of Jesus’ message on the kingdom of heaven those living in His day and ours.
2.Take part in a discussion on what the Bible teaches about the harmfulness of strife, and how to overcome it in the kingdom of heaven.
In order to understand the life of Christ, it is necessary for us to know something about his country and the people who lived there.
But the first thing you ought to do is take a minute out and ask God for His help along with the Holy Spirit’s help.
Jesus was born to Jewish parents in the land we know today as Israel. Although Jesus actually lived in what was known as the Roman Empire. They called the country Palestine.
Although Jesus was a native of Palestine He and His country man were called Jews. Israel had been conquered by the Romans.
Read Luke 1:1-4
Luke was concerned that the foundations of Christian belief be transmitted accurately and intact to future generations. Luke used many firsthand accounts. The Bible encourages you to investigate it’s claims thoroughly because your conclusion about Jesus is a life-and-death matter.
As a medical doctor, he used his skills in observation and analysis to thoroughly investigate the stories about Jesus. Our spiritual growth must involve careful, disciplined, and thorough investigation.
What do you learn from verses 1-4 about Luke? About the reason he wrote this gospel? About where he got his sources?
What aspect of the gospel first struck you as really good news?
What do you hope to gain from studying this Gospel?
To get the most out of this course what will you put into it?
How will you apply yourself to this course?
Lesson 1-Part 2
Read John 1:1-18
What Jesus taught and what he did are tied inseparably to who he is. John shows Jesus as fully human and fully God. If we cannot or do not believe this basic truth, we will not have enough faith to trust God for guidance in our life.
In Hebrew Scripture, the “Word”, was an agent of creation (Psalm 33.6), the source of God’s message to his people through the prophets (Hosea 1:2) and God’s law his standard of holliness (Psalm 119:11). John’s description shows clearly that he is speaking of Jesus (see especially 1:14) – a human being he knew and loved, but at the same time the Creator of the Universe, the ultimate revelation of God, the living picture of God’s holliness, the One in whom all things held together (Collossians 1:17). To John the Word was the Good News of Jesus Christ.
Remember that you exist only because God made you, and you have special gifts only because God gave them to you. With God you are something valuable and unique, apart from God you are nothing and if you try to live without him, you will be abandoning the purpose for which you were made.
Did you ever feel that your life is too complex for God to understand? Remember, God created the entire universe. his love is bigger than any problem you may face.
When we follow Jesus, the true light, he lights the path so we can avoid walking blindly and we can see how to live.
Have you allowed the light of Christ shine in your life?
Jesus helps us see our way to God and shows us how to walk along that way. The word “witness” indicates our role as reflectors of Christ’s light, and to point others to Christ, the Light.
Through faith in Christ, we are changed from the inside out – rearranging our attitudes, desires and motives.
By becoming human Christ became (1) the perfect teacher – in Jesus’ life we see how God thinks and therefore how we should think (Phillipians 2:5-11). (2) the perfect example – as a model of what we are to become, he shows us how to live and gives us the power to live that way (1 Peter 2:21). (3) the perfect sacrifice – Jesus came as a sacrifice for all sins, and his death satisfied God’s requirements for the removal of sins (Colossians 1:15-23).
As we get to know Christ better, our understanding of God will increase.
Why does this gospel begin “in the beginning” rather than at Jesus’ birth?
What facts about “the Word” can you find in verses 1-5? v10-18?
What is John the Baptist’s role as a witness?
Who or what fails to comprehend the light (vv. 5, 10, 11)? Why?
From the image of “receiving” someone (v12), how would you explain what faith is about? What is the result of this type of faith?
How would someone “full of grace and truth” treat others? In light of that, why are John (v15) and Moses (v17) given “second billing”?
From these passages, how can a person come to know God?
How much have you allowed Jesus to “dwell” with you? Are you keeping him at the door? Or have you given him the keys? Why?
What strikes you most about Jesus in these passages? Why?
What event or person was a “sign” that helped you decide to follow Jesus? How so?
This gospel suggests that knowing Jesus is an ever – growing experience. Do you feel like your life with Jesus is “in a rut”? Or are there some “cutting edges” of growth that you are experiencing? Why?
What do you expect would change in your life if you take this course and get to know Jesus better?
To get the most out of the course, what will you put into it? How will you apply yourself to the discipliness (of study, prayer, shared leadership, outreach, confidentiality, accountabillity, etc.)?
Jesus is our perfect leader and Savior. He offers forgiveness to all who will accept him as Lord of their lives and believe what he says is true.
Jesus’ love for people is good news for everyone. His message is for all people in every nation. Each one of us has an opportunity to respond to him in faith.
Jesus is more than an idea or teacher – he cares for you. Only this kind of deep love can satisfy your need.
The Holy Spirit was sent by God as confirmation of Jessus’ authority. The Holy Spirit is given to enable people to live for Christ. By faith we can have the Holy Spirit’s presence and power to witness and to serve.
Because Jesus is God’s Son, we can perfectly trust what he says. By trusting him, we can gain an open mind to understand God’s message and fulfill his purpose in our lives.
Jesus offers eternal life to us. We are invited to begin living in a personal eternal relationship with him that begins now. Although we must grow old and die, by trusting him we can have a new life that lasts forever.
Believing is active, living, and continuous trust in Jesus as Good. When we believe in his life, his words, his death, and his resurrection, we are cleansed from sin and receive power to follow him. But we must respond to him by believing.
Through God’s Holy Spirit we are drawn to him in faith. We must know the Holy Spirit to understand all Jesus taught. We can experience Jesus love and guidance as we allow the Holly Spirit to do his work in us.
Think about and respond in writing to the following statements and questions.
1.I consider the following individual to be a good leader?
2.The following qualities make this person a good leader?
3.I display the following similar qualities?
4.I do not display the following similar qualities?
5.I consider my greatest, most unique talents to be?
6.What can I learn about effective leadership by studying the leadership style?
7.Discuss what the Bible teaches about the harmfulness of strife?
TES:Praise the Mighty name of Jesus!!! Testimony of Tim Watts
Let me take this opportunity to share a little of my joy and peace
with you through my testimony. My name is Tim Watts, I am a 40 year old
retired Computer Scientist whose hobbies include model railroading and
being a concert pianist.
I came to Jesus about 5 years ago just after I turned 35, and after
the most devastating occurrence in my life happened. The reason that I
am retired is I have Systemic Lupus Erythematosus, I am a brittle
insulin dependent diabetic, a paraplegic (limited use of my legs), have
a hearing impairment and speech discrimination loss, plus a few other
I was diagnosed in Northern California, where I lived and operated
my own business at the time. The doctors recommended that I slow down
significantly, which I promptly ignored, continuing on in my greed for
money and power.
My only experiences with God prior to this time was, I was raised a
Roman Catholic, and only ran to God when I was in VietNam, scared to
death. I came out of the service with 7 purple hearts, a Silver Star, a
Bronze Star, and promptly forgot all about God. Sometimes I made it to
Mass most of the time I didn’t. I did not have any need for God then,
my business was successful, I made lots of money, enjoyed prestige,
belonged to the “right clubs” etc.
About a year after I was diagnosed with having Lupus, I really
started to feel the symptoms of the disease; constantly tired,
polyarthritis in the knees. I started going into the hospital more and
more frequently. I “lost” my hearing about 7/8 years ago. My thoughts
at the time were “if I lose my hearing, then I won’t be able t play
piano very well. I might as well take my life.” I “found” God real
quickly then! Somehow, He gave me the strength to go on. To be able to
still play, maybe not as a Concert Pianist, but well enough. After I
discovered that I could still play, I promptly forgot God again, and
forgot the talent that He allowed me to keep. Shortly after, I
discovered that I had Carpal Tunnel Syndrome in both hands, which
required surgery. Hey, time to get scared and find God again-I could
lose the ability to properly play piano. When God led me through that
one, I promptly forgot Him and the talent He let me keep again.
Finally about 5 years ago, I sat down and realized that my health
was rapidly deteriorating, many more things had gone wrong, I now have
lung problems, vision problems, diabetes from the medication I am
taking. It got to the point in 1985 that I had to quit working. Granted
I had a fairly substantial amount of money saved to live on while I
waited for Social Security….problem was, the money ran out before
Social Security came in. I didn’t receive my first check until December
At that point, with no money, no hope and no earthly place to turn,
I finally got it through my head to turn to God. Hadn’t he gotten me
through the scary parts before? Sure enough, there He was waiting for
me to welcome Him into my heart, accept Him as my Lord and Saviour.
Even though I had turned my back on Him so many times before, He was
willing to come into my life again. I wondered how anyone could put up
with the kind of nonsense I had given Him. The minute I gave my heart
to Jesus, a great peace settled over me, and I knew that as long as I
had Jesus, there was NOTHING on the face of the earth that could get me
down and keep me down. Since that time, I have had 2 major heart
attacks, lung problems, I have to have chemotherapy IV every week and
by mouth every day, I have to take Prednisolone which made me an
insulin dependent diabetic, I have to wear a pump that pumps insulin
(480 units a day) into my veins 24 hours a day. I have to use a
synthetic morphine so that the pain doesn’t get too bad, even though it
is bad, sometimes so bad that I cry. When I cry, I pray to Jesus to
comfort me…and there He is. He is better than any medication that I
have ever taken. His promises of strength is the only thing that keeps
me going on. I don’t know why this pain and suffering happened to me,
but I know that there is a reason for it and as long as I have Jesus, I
can face anything.
He has been with me through many trials and tribulations which I
could never have made without him. I am sure that there are more down
the road. But as long as I have Jesus I can face them.
Pray for me.
In Jesus’ perfect love Tim Watts
2418 Hudson St. Baltimore, MD 21224-3637