As we head into the summer months, I thought we might benefit by taking a more intensive look at a smaller section of scripture, indeed focusing for 10 weeks on a mere 17 verses. It must be said that these are no ordinary 17 verses of the Bible though: they are Exodus 20:1-17, what we know to be the Ten Commandments.
Now before you object, fearing 2½ months of “thou shalt nots”, let me hasten to add that I will be using as a resource the book Words of Life: Jesus and the Promise of the Ten Commandments Today, by Adam Hamilton. Adopting his insights to our unique setting, we will discover how even the prohibitions of the Decalogue (10 Words) point to life-giving “thou shalt” encouragements. I encountered Hamilton’s scholarship in a sermon series he preached at the United Methodist Church of the Resurrection in 2020 and knew that I wanted to share his insights and hopefulness with you.
As we emerge from the isolation of the pandemic, I think it will be helpful if we reflect on these guidelines for our living, helping us both grow in our faith and our faithful expression of God’s love.
This series will carry us into August. While we are considering the topics in our weekly worship, I am also hoping to organize small group sessions where the insights and inspirations of the book can take deeper root in order to bear more bountiful fruit through our daily walk with Christ.
If you would like to be part of such a study group, whether that be in person, online, or hybrid, send an email expressing your interest to: firstname.lastname@example.org or call the church office: (209) 472-2177.
Each gathering will run about 40 minutes on the Zoom platform and will include prayer and discussion of the scriptures which will be the basis for the coming Sunday’s worship. (The weekly Bible study guidelines in the worship bulletin detail the readings for the week.)
To try it out, find the time or leader that appeals most to you and simply email them asking that they invite you to their Zoom group.
Monday, 2:00 p.m.
Leader: Pastor Gary Pope-Sears
Tuesday, 7:00 p.m.
Leader: Kathleen Kimber