Canvey Methodist Church Bible Studies- 19th April 2022

Bible Study Tuesday 19th April 2022 -

Readings for Sunday:

Acts5:27-32;Psalm150;Revelation1:4-8;John20:19-31;

 

Let’s Turn the Pages:

1) Praising.

Psalm 150

1 Praise the Lord.[a] (Hebrew Hallelu Yah)

Praise God in his sanctuary;

    praise him in his mighty heavens.

2 Praise him for his acts of power;

    praise him for his surpassing greatness.

3 Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet,

    praise him with the harp and lyre,

4 praise him with timbrel and dancing,

    praise him with the strings and pipe,

5 praise him with the clash of cymbals,

    praise him with resounding cymbals.

6 Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.

Praise the Lord.(Hebrew Hallelu Yah).

 

Footnotes

a.Psalm 150:1 Hebrew Hallelu Yah; also in verse 6

 

Reflection:

What do you understand by the word Praise?

How do you react when someone Praises you?

What should be the place of Praise in our friendships, relationships and conversations?

In your prayers what do you Praise God For?

 

2) Fear, Doubt and Faith

 John 20:19-31.    New International Version

Jesus Appears to His Disciples

19 On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jewish leaders, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” 20 After he said this, he showed them his hands and side.The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord.

21 Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.”22 And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive anyone’s sins, their sins are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”

Jesus Appears to Thomas

24 Now Thomas(Aramaic for twin) (also known as Didymus (Greek for twin)[a]), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord!”

But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”

26 A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” 27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”

28 Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!”

29 Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

The Purpose of John’s Gospel

30 Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. 31 But these are written that you may believe[b] (continue to believe) that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.

Footnotes

a.John 20:24 Thomas (Aramaic) and Didymus (Greek) both mean twin.

b.John 20:31 Or may continue to believe

Reflection

How can we tell when something is real? Optical illusions are fascinating. Some are clever drawings but others demonstrate that our perceptions need to be checked and rechecked.

How many animals can you see in this picture?

The standout animals are an elephant, a donkey, dog, cat and mouse.

On closer inspection you may spot the snake hidden in the elephants tail - it will jump out at you when you see its small eye and mouth.

The more observant will also spot the mosquito buzzing around at the top of the elephant's rear leg. such as the fish disguised as the elephants eye.

A tortoise doubling up as the elephant's ear - There is also a dolphin masquerading as the elephant's trunk. What about the crocodile lurking as the elephant's bottom jaw.

But the real test will be if you can spot the crafty prawn hidden in the gap between the elephants front two legs. Finally there is a bird's head in the space between the elephant's forehead and its trunk

Well, this was just spotting things in a picture. What about real life? How do we know what is real there? What helps us to decide? Evidence and witnesses maybe! If so, is the witness of one person sufficient? If not, how many witnesses does it take to make something reliable?

In the matters of faith versus fact, was Thomas wise to be skeptical?

How do you experience God (Jesus) as real, or close to you? How can we support each other in our walk of faith as those who have not seen and yet have believed?”

3) Faith in action - Fearlessness and Witness

Acts 5:27-32.    New International Version

27 The apostles were brought in and made to appear before the Sanhedrin to be questioned by the high priest. 28 “We gave you strict orders not to teach in this name,”he said. “Yet you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching and are determined to make us guilty of this man’s blood.”

29 Peter and the other apostles replied: “We must obey God rather than human beings!30 The God of our ancestors raised Jesus from the dead—whom you killed by hanging him on a cross. 31 God exalted him to his own right hand as Prince and Savior that he might bring Israel to repentance and forgive their sins. 32 We are witnesses of these things, and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey him.”

 

Reflection:

How do we cope with criticism and put downs for expressing our faith?

How do we remain faithful and persistent in our witness to God’s love amongst those we live and move amongst?

 

Revelation 1:4-8.     New International Version

Greetings and Doxology

4 John, To the seven churches in the province of Asia: Grace and peace to you from him who is, and who was, and who is to come, and from the seven spirits[a] before his throne, 5 and from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood, 6 and has made us to be a kingdom and priests to serve his God and Father—to him be glory and power for ever and ever! Amen.

7 “Look, he is coming with the clouds,”[b]  and “every eye will see him,

even those who pierced him”; and all peoples on earth “will mourn because of him.”[c] So shall it be! Amen.

8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.”

Footnotes

a.Revelation 1:4 That is, the sevenfold Spirit

b.Revelation 1:7 Daniel 7:13

c.Revelation 1:7 Zech. 12:10