Sunday School Lessons
Mrs. Daisy B. Scott - Superintendent
(Updated July 21, 2019)

Sunday School classes start at 9:30 AM every Sunday.


The lesson segments include a synopsis of the lesson and a link to AudioBible.com where the reference Scripture will be played in audio and displayed on the screen.  If your computer cannot play the file, download a free copy of RealPlayer at the Real.com site. Also in each lesson segment will be a link to the New Living Translation version of the reference Scripture. This version is easier to understand than some of the other translations.


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July 7 – Jesus Teaches About Fulfilling the Law

Alternate Title #1 – Fulfilling the Law

Alternate Title #2 – Letting Your Light Shine


Bible Lesson:
Matthew 5:13-20 (KJV)


Key verse:
Matthew 5:16 (KJV) - "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."

What we shall learn from the lesson Scripture:
(Pop-up references come from The New Living Translation courtesy of Reftagger.com)

LESSON SYNOPSIS
The reference Scripture for today is part of the Sermon on the Mount. The total sermon was perhaps the greatest of Jesus' sermons. Even though his primary audience appeared to be His disciples (Matthew 5:1-2) a crowd of followers also benefited from His teaching (Matt 7:28-29).

In the segment of the sermon which we are studying today, three topics are discussed. First He said to those he was teaching that they were the salt of the earth and had a responsibility to remain that way so their effectiveness would not be lost (Matt 5:13).

Secondly, He said they were the Light of the World (Matt 5:14) and had a responsibility to be a beacon of understanding so others can see clearly what God wants them to know about Christ (Matt 5:15).

Thirdly, He declared that He did not come to destroy the Old Testament law and prophecies, but to fulfill them (Matt 5:17). In what ways was the fulfillment accomplished:

He was the Messiah which the prophecies pointed to (Jeremiah 31:31, 33, 34). The Old Testament sacrificial system was used on a Holy scale with the Son of God being the sacrificial Lamb who gave His blood on the cross. Thus the sacrificial system was brought to completionfulfillment.

In the sacrificial system, an animal stood in our place and gave its life to atone for the sins of the offerer. But, on the Holy scale, Jesus stood in the place for all of us and atoned for our past, present, and future sins. The New Covenant was initiated and all our sins were forgiven by the grace of God through the blood of Jesus.


OTHER DETAILS (SALT AND LIGHT)

SALT
Salt is an important substance today in cooking as well as tons of it being used every year to keep our roadways from freezing. Back during the time of the Sermon on the Mount, salt was arguably just as important and valuable. It provided the primary means to preserve meat since there was no refrigeration as is common today. It was also used to give a pleasant taste to cooked food.

Salt was one of the most important trade items and was even sometimes used as currency by the Roman Legions. To say someone was the salt of the earth could easily have a dual meaning. First, the disciples were important and valuable because they were tasked with spreading the Good News of Jesus Christ to the world. Secondly, it could mean they were "fundamentally good" which is a primary description of what is meant today about a person who is said to be the salt of the earth.

Jesus pointed out that regardless of how important their task was, they must remain vigilant and not lose their purpose and effectiveness. In that case, it would be like salt losing its flavor and purpose (Matt 5:13). When that happens, the salt might as well be thrown out because it is worthless.

LIGHT
When we use a light, in general, it is used so we can see something better. A world without light would be impossible to live in. Imagine the chaos if no one could see what they were doing. As an example, without light for the surgeon there would be little, if any, chance for a successful operation

Our light in the lesson is a metaphor for the godly good in us and in our lifestyle. The more good we do, the brighter our light becomes. Our light should shine so brightly that others can live a more godly life by using us as an example.

It's not sufficient that we have a light that shines. We must let our light shine unhindered so that others can benefit by seeing our godly ways. By others benefitting, we bring glory to God because we are helping the church fulfill its mission on earth. We must not hide our light.

As an example, it is not enough that we understand God's word, we should share that understanding with others. We must not hide our light from view.

All believers are given a spiritual giftsomething we will be good at which will benefit others in their walk with Christ. We should not hide that gift but display it for all to see and use. If we have a gift of encouragement, what good is it if we never use it to encourage someone. We must not hide our light.

What is the good in having great faith and wisdom if we do not use that power to help someone through tough times or to help them make a life-changing decision? We must not hide our light.


The Bible lesson link (at the beginning of the lesson) is for the King James Version. You may also wish to read the New Living Translation Bible Version of Matthew 5:13-20.

The key verse: Matthew 5:16 (NLT) - " In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father."





July 14 – Jesus Teaches Us to Love One Another

Alternate Title – Love One Another

Bible Lesson: Matthew 5:21-32 (KJV)


Key verses:
Matthew 5:23-24 (KJV) - "Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift."

What we shall learn from the lesson Scripture:
(Pop-up references come from The New Living Translation courtesy of Reftagger.com)


This lesson emphasizes how important it is to attack our sin not only from outward appearances but also that which resides inwardly in our heart. Let us use an analogy of sin being similar to an unwanted weed in our garden. It's more effective to kill a weed by destroying the hidden partthe rootrather than just the part we see above ground. Any good gardener knows that if we leave the root living, the weed will not die and soon we will see it flourishing again.

This analogy means that a very important aspect of our Christian walk with Christ is not only what we do outwardly, whether good or bad, but what was in our heart that caused our action. In Jesus' Sermon on the Mount, He said, "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God." (Matthew 5:8). A person who loves the Lord will seek to have purity of heart; a loving nature within.

Conversely, a person who has evil intentions or sinful thoughts has already sinned even if no outward physical sin is committed. We should seek forgiveness from God for physical sin but also for our evil or sinful thoughts. As an example, if a person wishes another person to be dead out of anger is wrong and sinful even if the act of murder is not committed (Matthew 5:22).

Let be clear about this. It's very good to avoid actual physical sin, but even better if we also avoid mental sin.

If a certain aspect of our lifestyle causes us to have sinful thoughts or actions, then that part of our lifestyle should be cut out. If going to a strip club causes a person to lust, then trips to the strip club should be cut out. This is the spirit of verse Matthew 5:29 as opposed to actually gouging out our eyes or cutting off our legs to keep us from doing wrong. Our wrong thinking is in the desires of the heart and mindthat is where the root resides.

It's easy to see how difficult to avoid sinning if our private sinful thoughts also count. But, on the other hand, think how great our society would be if we all had inward loving and godly wishes and thoughts about othersif we truly loved our neighbor as we are commanded to do (Mark 12:31).


The Bible lesson link (at the beginning of the lesson) is for the King James Version. You may also wish to read the New Living Translation Bible Version of Matthew 5:21-32.

The key verse: Matthew 5:23-24 (NLT) - "So if you are presenting a sacrifice at the altar in the Temple and you suddenly remember that someone has something against you, leave your sacrifice there at the altar. Go and be reconciled to that person. Then come and offer your sacrifice to God."





July 21 – Jesus Teaches Us About Transforming Love

Alternate Title #1 – Transforming Love

Alternate Title #2 - Love Your Enemies

Bible Lesson: Matthew 5:38-48 (KJV)


Key verses:
Matthew 5:43-44 (KJV) - "Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you."

What we shall learn from the lesson Scripture:
(Pop-up references come from The New Living Translation courtesy of Reftagger.com)

When a person demonstrates an insulting nature toward us, we may find it difficult to not return insult for insult. When a person shows us he/she is more of an enemy than a friend, it is difficult to be friendly and kind to that person. From our reference text, we can see that to love our enemies means to not resort to being an enemy in return; not to return hate with hate and insult for insult but to return hate with love.

We know Jesus said the second greatest commandment is to love our neighbor as we love our self (Mark 12:31). In our lesson text, He takes this declaration to a higher level: not just to love our neighbors, but to also love our enemies (Matthew 5:44 KJV). In effect, we must treat all people (enemies, friends, and those in-between) with kindness and love.

The text is meant to transform our thoughts and actions to be more Christian-like. In that regard, we can experience a personal Christian triumph in times when we can overcome our natural tendency to strike back at someone who has offended us. We can postulate that it will be an even greater personal triumph when we are conditioned to avoid innermost thoughts of retaliation during a time of provocation.

If there is a church member or neighbor who makes it a point to not greet us in passing, our natural tendency is to not speak to them either. This is a situation involving a person who is neither friend nor foe. But, if we are to love all people, what should we do in such a case? Matt 5:47 NIV answers that question:

"And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that?"

We can hope that because of our kind actions, our adversaries and those who treat us dismissively will be transformed. Whether or not this happens should not deter us from trying to be kind to everyone. We should hope and pray these people will be transformed to know Christ as we do. Because if they know Christ we should feel confident their heart will soften.

An example of the concept of loving our enemies is expressed in the following quote:

"We must love our enemies. I want you to love our enemies. Be good to them. This is what we must live by: We must return hate with love."

Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. made this statement from the porch of his house after it had been bombed with his wife and child inside. This happened in Montgomery, Alabama during the bus boycott and with his conciliatory words, an angry crowd bent on revenge, was subdued.

We know the non-violent civil rights movement led by Dr. King was successful in many respects. We can only imagine the lack of success the same movement would have yielded if he had encouraged violence and hatred instead of love.

In Matt 5:39 it tells us to "turn the other cheek." This doesn't mean if someone hits us on the side of our head with a baseball bat we should turn to them the other side. It does mean we should go the extra mile and use wisdom from above (James 3:17) to guide our reaction to an aggressor when it comes to protecting ourselves and our family.

In today's society, revenge and "payback" are central themes in many minds. A great number of movies have been based on getting even and making the bad guy pay for his/her wrongdoings. Sometimes we are disappointed that we didn't have a good "come back" for an insult or anger-provoking statement directed at us. We may then spend a lot of time regretting our inability to instantly return insult for insult.

If any of us had the power of God, we can only imagine how many people would get instant punishment for doing or saying something we didn't like. We should consider this when we make a decision to sin against God. Even though He has the power to exact instant punishment, quite often He gives us an opportunity to repent and be forgiven.

Our text teaches us to use discipline and restraint in our actions towards others who have provoked us with unkind words or actions. In fact, we can postulate that one chief Christian attribute should be "discipline" because, as Christians, we are called upon in many cases to use discipline. We should be slow to anger and quick to forgive. We should show love and kindness rather than revenge and hatred. That is how we want the Lord to be toward us, and that is how we should be toward others (James 1:19-20).

Let us now consider the last verse in our reference text: "Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect." (Matthew 5:48 NIV). We know we cannot be perfect as our heavenly Father but we certainly can consider how He has demonstrated to us what true and perfect love is. We can let the love He has shown to us help mold our love toward others.

From our human perspective, considering all He has done for us, to sin against God is like an insult to Himlike contempt and disobedience. How did He respond to the insulting sin of the world? He could have responded by destroying all who offended Him. But, instead, He responded by giving His Son to die a painful and agonizing death on the cross as a sacrifice for our sins, so that we could receive forgiveness. He returned insults and disobedience with love.

From a personal and human level, parents know how difficult and time-consuming it is to raise a child to adulthood. Parents sacrifice resources of all sorts to ensure the child survives illnesses and difficult times in life. The parents hope the child will be appreciative for their sacrifices. But when that same child returns love with contempt and disobedience to the parents, it is an insult, considering all which has been done for the child. This is disrespectful to the parents who love their children and only wish the best for them.

Likewise, we know that God loves us as our Heavenly Father because the Bible tells us so: "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3:16 KJV). Regardless of how much we have sinned against Him, we know we can still go to Him and repent. He will forgive us. This is how God loves us as the Father.

He loves us as God the Son. He willingly allowed himself to be tortured and nailed to a cross at the hands of His enemies. Insulting and blasphemous slurs were directed at Himthe Creator of all in existence. He suffered a slow, painful, and agonizing death for the benefit of all of humankind, even those who killed Him. He did this for us. This is how God loves us as the Son.

He loves us as God the Holy Spirit. God's Spiritthe Holy Spiritindwells all believers. That alone is amazing. He is there as an advocate, a teacher, comforter, and an enabler. He is there when we are sad and there when we are happy. His presence is an invaluable gift and He is there to help us live a Christian life. This is how God loves us as the Holy Spirit.

So we have seen how God has responded to our insulting sin. The question now is how will we respond to the insulting behavior of our enemies and even our friends? In today's society, even in the church, it doesn't take much for a person to be insulted. When it happens, will we strike back or be slow to anger?

After the lesson for today, hopefully we will think about what Jesus taught us in the text and rely on the Holy Spirit to guide our response to those who seek to provoke us or to unfairly criticize us.


The Bible lesson link (at the beginning of the lesson) is for the King James Version. You may also wish to read the New Living Translation Bible Version of Matthew 5:38-48.

The key verse: Matthew 5:43-44 (NLT) - "You have heard the law that says, 'Love your neighbor' and hate your enemy. But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you! "






July 28 – Jesus Teaches About Spiritual Discernment

Alternate Title #1 – Spiritual Discernment

Alternate Title #2 - Don't Judge Others

Bible Lesson: Matthew 7:1-6, 15-23 (KJV)


Key verses:
Matthew 7:15-16 (KJV) - "Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?"

What we shall learn from the lesson Scripture:
(Pop-up references come from The New Living Translation courtesy of Reftagger.com)

What we perceive is our reality. This reality is often based only on the information at our disposal even though it may be incomplete or incorrect. To form an opinion of someone based only on limited knowledge is called judgment. In that regard, a judge makes his/her decision based on the facts and information available.

On the other hand, spiritual discernment goes deeper than simple judgment. With spiritual discernment, we seek to know the root cause of a person's actions and to accurately determine the truth even though it may be obscure to the average mind. Spiritual discernment needs patience, wisdom, intuitiveness, and reliance on the Holy Spirit for insight. This should be the objective of a Christian rather than simply judgment.

As an example, when we see a person going to the club every night and drinking until drunk, we can judge the person as irresponsible and an alcoholic. But, with the help of the Holy Spirit, we may learn the true reasons behind the behavior are that he/she is a deeply troubled individual who is suffering from depression. The former is judgment and the latter is spiritual discernment. Judgment is an unwavering conviction whereas spiritual discernment could lead us to know the person needs our help.

Wouldn't we want others to not make snap critical judgments about us without knowing all the facts? And even if they knew all the facts, wouldn't we want them to help us correct our problem rather than using that problem as a loudspeaker of judgment to anyone who would listen? If we make snap judgments about other people, we deserve no better for ourselves (Matthew 7:1-2).

Jesus said it is hypocritical to judge others when we ourselves are so sinful (Matt 7:3-4). When the crowd wanted to stone to death an adulterous woman, it was Jesus who prevented this from happening by saying to the crowd, "Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her." (John 8:7 NIV).

We must be careful who we listen to especially when it comes to the reputation of someone else. We must be careful to not judge someone else simply based on what someone has told us or even solely on our own opinion. This is especially true about gossip when someone's opinion can be propagated as the truth.

There are times when we draw a conclusion about someone based solely on one side of the story or what we have seen rather than what we have determined as fact. As an example, we may judge a husband based solely on what the wife had to say (or vice versa). More than likely there are three stories: the wife's story, the husband's story, and the true story. Spiritual discernment seeks out the true story or it disregards anything less.

This is especially true when it comes to a person making a snap judgment about someone else. There are times when any one of us could, unfortunately, say the wrong thing in the wrong way at the wrong time. We all make mistakes. We should not judge them based solely on an unfortunate error of the tongue.

Using spiritual discernment will keep us on guard for those who would otherwise deceive us (Matt 7:15). This includes those who preach incorrect gospel or those who wish to manipulate us for their own purposes.

Most of us are not clairvoyant and can't see the hidden intentions a person may have. We can only remain observant as to what type of actions are associated with an individual. We will notice if he/she is kind, friendly, slow to anger, and slow to speak negatively about someone else. In essence, we will see if the type "fruit" that comes from a person like the good fruit which comes from a good tree (Matt 7:18-19).

But there is One who is clairvoyant and that is God. He has the ultimate spiritual discernment and knows our true heart and true intentions. He is the One who cannot be fooled. Jesus said, "Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven." (Matt 7:21 NIV).


The Bible lesson link (at the beginning of the lesson) is for the King James Version. You may also wish to read the New Living Translation Bible Version of Matthew 7:1-6, 15-23.

The key verse: Matthew 7:15-16 (NLT) - "Beware of false prophets who come disguised as harmless sheep but are really vicious wolves. You can identify them by their fruit, that is, by the way they act. Can you pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?"







August 4 – A Covenant Between Friends

Alternate Title – A Promise Between Friends

Bible Lesson: 1 Samuel 18:1-5; 19:1-7 (KJV)


Key verses:
1 Samuel 18:1 (KJV) - "And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking unto Saul, that the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul."

What we shall learn from the lesson Scripture:
(Pop-up references come from The New Living Translation courtesy of Reftagger.com)

Samuel had already told Saul that he would lose his kingship and another would take his place. (1 Samuel 13:14). This was done when David was still a young and obscure shepherd boy.

When David killed Goliath, he was not obscure anymore. He was brought to King Saul; still holding Goliath's head in his hand (1 Samuel 17:57.) After leaving Saul, David met his son, Jonathan. We can only imagine the admiration Jonathan had for David's brave act of going against the giant warrior Goliath.

Jonathan was also successful in battle (1 Samuel 13:3) and had taken a great personal risk when he and his armor-bearer attacked a Philistine outpost by themselves (1 Samuel 14:1-23).

Perhaps Jonathan and David saw in each other similar attributes such as faith in God, fearlessness in battle, and youth. But regardless of the reasons, their friendship was immediate and sincere (1 Samuel 18:1). Jonathan sealed the pact of friendship by giving David his robe, tunic, sword, bow, and belt. (1 Samuel 18:3-4). Thus a covenant was established between thema covenant of friendship.

Jonathan was the crown princethe next in line to be king after Saul. But this would not happen if God replaced Saul with David. That made David a rival for the throne but even this did not deter the friendship between Jonathan and David.

Because David was so well thought of by the people, Saul became jealous of David (1 Samuel 18:8-9). Eventually, he saw David as a rival and sought to kill him. But Jonathan protected David by coming to his defense with his father Saul (1 Samuel 19:6-7). When Saul's promised to spare David eventually fell through, it was Jonathan who warned David to escape Saul's plot to kill him (1 Samuel 20:22).

Sometimes a friendship can be used in God's plan for us. A true friend will tell us when we are doing right and when we a doing wrong. A true friend will stand by us in a time of need. Jonathan stood by David in a desperate time of need even though his father wanted to kill David. The greatest sign of friendship is if we are willing to lay our life down for a friend (John 15:13) as Jesus did for us.


The Bible lesson link (at the beginning of the lesson) is for the King James Version. You may also wish to read the New Living Translation Bible Version of Matthew 7:1-6, 15-23.

The key verse: 1 Samuel 18:1 (NLT) - "After David had finished talking with Saul, he met Jonathan, the king's son. There was an immediate bond between them, for Jonathan loved David."






August 11 – A Mother-Daughter Covenant

Alternate Title – A Mother-Daughter Promise

Bible Lesson: Ruth 1:6-11, 14-18 (KJV)


Key verse:
Ruth 1:16(KJV) - "And Ruth said, Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God: "

What we shall learn from the lesson Scripture:
(Pop-up references come from The New Living Translation courtesy of Reftagger.com)

The synopsis for this lesson will be posted on or before Thursday, July 25, 2019).


The Bible lesson link (at the beginning of the lesson) is for the King James Version. You may also wish to read the New Living Translation Bible Version of Ruth 1:6-11, 14-18.

The key verse: Ruth 1:16 (NLT) - "But Ruth replied, "Don't ask me to leave you and turn back. Wherever you go, I will go; wherever you live, I will live. Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God. "







For access to all chapters of the King James Version Bible in audio and visual formats, visit
the Audio-Bible.com web site.

For other versions (NIV, New Living Translation, etc.) of the Bible in audio and visual formats, visit the World Wide Study Bible page of Christian Classics Eternal Library site. Also visit the New Living Translation web site.

Some information on this page may be referenced from the NLT Study Bible, the Standard Lesson Commentary, and Commentary by David Guzik. Frederick L. Marsh is the commentary author of the information contained in this page. He is the author of the book: "The Book of the Holy Spirit: Joyful living." Any opinions expressed or writings on this page are his responsibility.



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