Family Time
March 15, 2019, 11:00 AM

God is Love: 1 John 4



Good ways to start Family Devotional Time: 

1. Find a spot - Depending on the age of your family (children, grandchildren, nephews, nieces, etc.) you can do this inside, outside, or at the dinner table if you are like us and your baby needs to eat to be able to be still and listen 

2. Pray – Thank God for His Word and ask Him to speak through His Word to you and your family.


Good Reminders:
Who wrote 1 John? Although the book does not explicitly state the author, the earliest testimony of the church names John the author. The three epistles 1st, 2nd, and 3rd John all bear his writing characteristics.
Who is John? One of Jesus’s closest disciples. Therefore, he is an eyewitness! (1 John 1:1-3)
Who is the author speaking to? There is no specific recipient named. Therefore, it is called a general epistle. John was writing to believers.
Why is the author speaking to them? He is writing this letter to remind the reader of the gospel truth (Jesus defeating death on the cross) so that they may have fellowship with Christ and other believers, false teachers would not sway them, and they would not fall into sin (1 John 1:3-4; 2:1).

SCRIPTURE: 1 John 4:7-21
Central Truth: We know God is love, because He sent His Son Jesus to die on the cross for our sins. In turn, if we love God, we must love others the way He loves us!


Ideas for reading the passage this week:
- It’s always good for dad or the male leader to lead in the devotional time when available. If you think your older son is ready to lead a devotional, let him do it sometime!
- Don’t forget to read with passion!
- Have the kids read some parts, if they are able!
- If you have extra time, read 1 Corinthians 13 as it explains all the characteristics of godly love.


OBSERVATIONS
Questions to Ask:
Once again, tailor this to your family. Obviously, with our one year old we just read the passage and tell him the central truth, and that is as much as his attention span can handle J
-Can anyone retell the passage in his or her own words?
-What does this passage say about God? (Ask this question as soon as your little one is able to dialogue with you!)
-What does this passage say about those who are believers?
-Are there any other observations you made?
-Are there any questions about the passage?*(Remember to help your family focus on the central truths of the passage. Do not get too sidetracked from what the passage is mainly about. With that said, always give whoever freedom to ask questions and don’t make them feel silly.)

APPLICATION
-How could you allow God to change your attitude and actions to please Him based on this passage?
-How can we love on another better this week?
-How can we put what we have learned into practice this week?
-How can we use what we have learned to point others to Christ?
-How will what we learned today affect our worship of the Lord this weekend?

PRAYER
Thank the Lord for His Word, praise Him for all that He has done, and ask Him to help you and your family apply what He has taught you. If you have time, you can always ask your family members if there is anything you haven’t talked about that they want to pray for. You can do this every day as well!


*Questions that may arise:
What does propitiation mean? Propitiation means that Jesus completely satisfied God’s requirement for sins, so that we could be forgiven. You could use an example of someone owing a debt to someone (us), but then this prince (Jesus) stepped in and paid the debt for you. Not only did he pay the debt for you, but He wanted to become your best friend, bring you to His palace, and share His inheritance with you as well! You could keep going with this example.


What does it mean when the Bible says perfect love casts out fear? The writer is explaining to the reader that when we become a believer we do not have to be terrified of God’s wrath. We still revere God and stand in awe of Him and His glory, but we do not have to live in fear of eternal punishment.
  




February 22, 2019, 12:00 PM

Faith In Action: James 2



Good ways to start Family Devotional Time:

1. Find a spot - Depending on the age of your family (children, grandchildren, nephews, nieces, etc.) you can do this inside, outside, or at the dinner table if you are like us and your baby needs to eat to be able to be still and listen  

2. Pray – Thank God for His Word and ask Him to speak through His Word to you and your family.
 
Good Reminders: Who wrote James? James (James 1:1) Who is James? James is the half-brother of Jesus Who is the author speaking to? The 12 tribes in the Dispersion (believers, specifically Jewish believers, who were being persecuted) (James 1:1) Why is the author speaking to them? To encourage them to endure (stay strong in the faith, despite being hurt for their beliefs in Jesus) and put “feet to their faith.”
 SCRIPTURE  (James 2) Central Truth: Do not treat others better because they are wealthy or look a certain way. We are to love everyone equally. Also, our actions display what we believe. If we truly believe in Jesus, then our actions should line up with how He tells us to act in His Word. 
 
Ideas for reading the passage this week: 1. It’s always good for dad or the male leader to lead in the devotional time when available. Also, always feel free to have your older son lead the devotional if you think he is ready!

2. Have the kids read some parts, if they are able!
 
-Activities at the end of the lesson:  1. Let each person do a family trust fall to teach what faith producing works means. If you believe your family will hold you up (faith), then you will fall into their arms (action). 2. You can also all sit down in chairs together. If you believe that chair will hold you up (faith), then you will sit in it (action).
 
 
OBSERVATIONS Questions to Ask: Once again, tailor this to your family. Obviously, with our one year old we just read the passage and tell him the central truth, and that is as much as his attention span can handle.
 
-Can anyone describe the passage we just read in his or her words? -What does this passage say about God? (Ask this question as soon as your little one is able to dialogue with you!)
-What does this passage reveal about you? -What does it say about those who are following God? -Are there any other observations you made? -Are there any questions about the passage?*(Remember to help your family focus on the central truths of the passage. Do not get too sidetracked from what the passage or story is mainly about. With that said, always give whoever freedom to ask questions and don’t make them feel silly.)


APPLICATION -How can we put what we have learned into practice this week? -How can you love your “neighbor” better this week? -Do you need to ask forgiveness for committing the sin of favoritism? -How can we use what we have learned to point others to Christ? -How will what we learned today affect our worship of the Lord this weekend?
 
 
PRAYER Thank the Lord for His Word, praise Him for all that He has done, and ask Him to help you and your family apply what He has taught you. If you have time, you can always ask your family members if there is anything you haven’t talked about that they want to pray for. You can do this throughout the week at the dinner table as well.
 
 
*Questions that may arise:
 
-Is James saying that works save you? 
 
James is not saying that works save you. When we look at the Bible as a whole, we see that we are saved by faith, and that salvation is a gift from God (Ephesians 2:8-9). We also see throughout the Bible that when we have abiding faith, it will show by the fruit we produce (John 15:5). In simpler terms, when we believe Jesus as Savior and submit to Him as Lord, our lives change. As we learn more about Jesus and what He desires for us, our actions look more and more like His. Faith is active together with our works (James 2:22).