Weekly Lessons and Daily Bible Readings

September 27th: God's Plan Revealed

September 27, 2020 -  September 30, 2020   Time: 9:00 AM

"God's Plan Revealed"
Background: Genesis 43; 45:1-15
Devotional Reading: John 14:1-14
Keep in Mind
"Now therefore be not grieved, nor angry with yourselves, that ye sold me hither: for God did send me before you to preserve life." (Genesis 45:5, KJV)
Aim for Change
By the end of the lesson, we will. UNDERSTAND how Joseph viewed his past mistreatment at the hand of his brothers, RECOGNIZE how God is at work in difficult circumstances, and RESPOND to mistreatment not with vengeance but with creative transforming initiatives.
Focal Verses: Genesis 45:1-15
1Joseph could stand it no longer. There were many people in the room, and he said to his attendants, “Out, all of you!” So he was alone with his brothers when he told them who he was.
2Then he broke down and wept. He wept so loudly the Egyptians could hear him, and word of it quickly carried to Pharaoh’s palace.
3“I am Joseph!” he said to his brothers. “Is my father still alive?” But his brothers were speechless! They were stunned to realize that Joseph was standing there in front of them.
4“Please, come closer,” he said to them. So they came closer. And he said again, “I am Joseph, your brother, whom you sold into slavery in Egypt.
5But don’t be upset, and don’t be angry with yourselves for selling me to this place. It was God who sent me here ahead of you to preserve your lives.
6This famine that has ravaged the land for two years will last five more years, and there will be neither plowing nor harvesting. 
7God has sent me ahead of you to keep you and your families alive and to preserve many survivors. 
8So it was God who sent me here, not you! And he is the one who made me an adviser to Pharaoh—the manager of his entire palace and the governor of all Egypt.
9“Now hurry back to my father and tell him, ‘This is what your son Joseph says: God has made me master over all the land of Egypt. So come down to me immediately! 
10You can live in the region of Goshen, where you can be near me with all your children and grandchildren, your flocks and herds, and everything you own.
11I will take care of you there, for there are still five years of famine ahead of us. Otherwise you, your household, and all your animals will starve.”
12Then Joseph added, “Look! You can see for yourselves, and so can my brother Benjamin, that I really am Joseph! 
13Go tell my father of my honored position here in Egypt. Describe for him everything you have seen, and then bring my father here quickly.”
14Weeping with joy, he embraced Benjamin, and Benjamin did the same. 
15Then Joseph kissed each of his brothers and wept over them, and after that they began talking freely with him.
Daily Bible Readings:
Monday --- "During Trouble, Maintain Hope in God" -- Psalm 43
Tuesday --- "Benjamin Sent to Joseph with Gifts" -- Genesis 43:1-15
Wednesday --- "Stolen Cup Found in Benjamin's Grain" -- Genesis 44:1-13
Thursday --- "Brothers Offer to Become Slaves to Joseph" -- Genesis 44:14-17
Friday --- "Judah Pleads with Joseph for Benjamin" --- Genesis 44:18-26
Saturday --- "Jacob Will Die Without Seeing Benjamin" -- Genesis 44:27-34
Sunday --- "Joseph  and His Brothers Reconcile Their Differences" -- Genesis 45:1-15

October 4th: Love and Devotion to Others

October 04, 2020 -  November 08, 2020   Time: 9:00 AM

"Love and Devotion to Others"
Background: 1 Samuel 19:1-7, 23:1-18; 2 Samuel 9
Devotional Reading: Matthew 5:43-48
Keep in Mind
"And Jonathan spake good of David unto Saul his father, and said unto him, Let not the King sin aginst his servant, against David; because he hath not sinned against thee, and because his works have been to thee-ward very good." (1 Samuel 19:4, KJV)
Aim for Change
By the end of the lesson, we will EXPLORE the story of Jonathan's defense of David when David was opposed by Saul, LONG for love and justice within the family and beyond, and GROW in love and devotion for justice for others.
Focal Verses: 1 Samuel 19:1-7

1Saul now urged his servants and his son Jonathan to assassinate David. But Jonathan, because of his strong affection for David, 
told him what his father was planning. “Tomorrow morning,” he warned him, “you must find a hiding place out in the fields. 
I’ll ask my father to go out there with me, and I’ll talk to him about you. Then I’ll tell you everything I can find out.”
The next morning Jonathan spoke with his father about David, saying many good things about him. “The king must not sin against his servant David,” Jonathan said. “He’s never done anything to harm you. He has always helped you in any way he could. 
Have you forgotten about the time he risked his life to kill the Philistine giant and how the Lord brought a great victory to all Israel as a result? You were certainly happy about it then. Why should you murder an innocent man like David? There is no reason for it at all!”
So Saul listened to Jonathan and vowed, “As surely as the Lord lives, David will not be killed.”
Afterward Jonathan called David and told him what had happened. Then he brought David to Saul, and David served in the court as before.

Daily Bible Readings:
Monday --- "Timothy, My Brother, and Coworker" -- 1 Thessalonians 3:1-6
Tuesday --- "David Slays Philistine with a Stone" -- 1 Samuel 17:41-51
Wednesday --- "David and Jonathan Bond Together" -- 1 Samuel 18:1-5
Thursday --- "Saul Jealous of and Fears David" -- 1 Samuel 18:12-18 
Friday --- "Jonathan Asserts David as Next King" --- 1 Samuel 23:14-18
Saturday --- "David Provides for Jonathan's Son Mephibosheth" -- 2 Samuel 9:1-10
Sunday --- "Saul Promises to Preserve David's Life" -- 1 Samuel 19:1-7

October 11th: Love Your Enemies

October 11, 2020 -  October 16, 2020   Time: 9:00 AM

"Love Your Enemies"
Background: Luke 6:27-36
Devotional Reading: Isaiah 1:12-17
Keep in Mind
"But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you, bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefuly use you." (Luke 6:27-28, KJV)
Aim for Change
By the end of the lesson, we will EXPLORE Jesus' teaching about what it means to love our enemies, REFLECT on times we felt hate toward others or were hated by others, and IDENTIFY ways to love our enemies.
Focal Verses: Luke 6:27-36

27 “But to you who are willing to listen, I say, love your enemies! Do good to those who hate you. 
28 Bless those who curse you. Pray for those who hurt you. 
29 If someone slaps you on one cheek, offer the other cheek also. If someone demands your coat, offer your shirt also. 
30 Give to anyone who asks; and when things are taken away from you, don’t try to get them back. 
31 Do to others as you would like them to do to you.
32 “If you love only those who love you, why should you get credit for that? Even sinners love those who love them!
33 And if you do good only to those who do good to you, why should you get credit? Even sinners do that much! 
34 And if you lend money only to those who can repay you, why should you get credit? Even sinners will lend to other sinners for a full return.
35 “Love your enemies! Do good to them. Lend to them without expecting to be repaid. Then your reward from heaven will be very great, and you will truly be acting as children of the Most High, for he is kind to those who are unthankful and wicked. 
36 You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate.

Daily Bible Readings:
Monday --- "The Lord Is Merciful and Grecious" -- Psalm 103:1-14
Tuesday --- "Responding to Unwanted Demands" -- Matthew 5:38-42
Wednesday --- "Handling Family Difficulties" -- Leviticus 25:35-39
Thursday --- "Home Life of the Faithful" -- Psalm 128
Friday --- "Forgiving the Ignorant" --- Luke 23:32-36
Saturday --- "Blessed and Rewarded" -- Matthew 5:1-12
Sunday --- "Love and Forgive Your Enemies" -- Luke 6:27-36

October 18th: Loving Your Neighbor

October 18, 2020 -  October 23, 2020   Time: 9:00 AM

"Loving Your Neighbor"
Background: Leviticus 19:18, 34; Luke 10:25-37
Devotional Reading: John 5:1-15
Keep in Mind
"Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves? And he said, He that shewed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise." (Luke 10:36-37, KJV)
Aim for Change
By the end of the lesson, we will EXPLORE the concept of neighbor in the conversation between Jesus and the lawyer, VALUE all people as God does, and SHARE love and mercy with those who are in need, even those who are different from us.
Focal Verses: Luke 10:25-36

25 One day an expert in religious law stood up to test Jesus by asking him this question: “Teacher, what should I do to inherit eternal life?”
26 Jesus replied, “What does the law of Moses say? How do you read it?”
27 The man answered, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind.’ And, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”[
28 “Right!” Jesus told him. “Do this and you will live!”
29 The man wanted to justify his actions, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”
30 Jesus replied with a story: “A Jewish man was traveling from Jerusalem down to Jericho, and he was attacked by bandits. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him up, and left him half dead beside the road.
31 “By chance a priest came along. But when he saw the man lying there, he crossed to the other side of the road and passed him by.
32 A Temple assistant walked over and looked at him lying there, but he also passed by on the other side.
33 “Then a despised Samaritan came along, and when he saw the man, he felt compassion for him. 
34 Going over to him, the Samaritan soothed his wounds with olive oil and wine and bandaged them. Then he put the man on his own donkey and took him to an inn, where he took care of him. 
35 The next day he handed the innkeeper two silver coins, telling him, ‘Take care of this man. If his bill runs higher than this, I’ll pay you the next time I’m here.’
36 “Now which of these three would you say was a neighbor to the man who was attacked by bandits?” Jesus asked.

Daily Bible Readings:

Monday --- "Help Your Neighbor In Need" -- Deuteronomy 15:7-11
Tuesday --- "Love God and Brothers and Sisters" -- 1 John 4:16-21
Wednesday --- "Adopt the First Commandments" -- Mark 12:28-34
Thursday --- "Jesus Accepts Thanks from Healed Samaritan" -- Luke 17:11-19
Friday --- "Jacob Lives with Joseph in Egypt" --- Acts 7:9-15
Saturday --- "Jesus Offers Samaritan Woman Living Water" -- John 4:1-15
Sunday --- "Follow the Samaritan's Example" -- Luke 10:25-37

October 25th: Love Divine

October 25, 2020 -  October 30, 2020   Time: 9:00 AM

"Love Divine"
Background: 1 Corinthians 12:27-14:1
Devotional Reading: Romans 12:9-21
Keep in Mind
"And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity." (1 Corinthians 13:13, KJV)
Aim for Change
By the end of the lesson, we will DEFINE Paul's understanding of love as the apex of the Spirit-led life, APPRECIATE love as motivation to share our God-given gifts, and ACT in love when sharing our God-given gifts.
Focal Verses: 1 Corinthians 13:1-13

1If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 
If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. 
If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.
Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud 
or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. 
It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. 
Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.
Prophecy and speaking in unknown languages and special knowledge will become useless. But love will last forever! 
Now our knowledge is partial and incomplete, and even the gift of prophecy reveals only part of the whole picture! 
10 But when the time of perfection comes, these partial things will become useless.
11 When I was a child, I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child. But when I grew up, I put away childish things. 
12 Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.
13 Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.

Daily Bible Readings:
Monday --- "Activists and Supporters Share Victories" -- 1 Samuel 30:21-25
Tuesday --- "The New Life in Christ" -- Romans 12:1-8
Wednesday --- "Live by the Mind of Christ" -- Philippians 2:3-8
Thursday --- "Faith, Hope, and Love in Action" -- Colossians 1:3-8
Friday --- "Gifts for the Good of All" --- 1 Corinthians 12:4-11
Saturday --- "Pray with the Mind and Spirit" -- 1 Corinthians 14:13-19
Sunday --- "The Life of Love" -- 1 Corinthians 13

November 1st: Loving by Serving

November 01, 2020 -  November 05, 2020   Time: 9:00 AM

"Loving by Serving"
Background: John 13:1-35
Devotional Reading: John 15:18-16:4

Keep in Mind
"For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you." (John 13:15, KJV)

Aim for Change
By the end of the lesson, we will CONSIDER the significance of Jesus washing the disciples' feet, REPENT of pride that has prevented serving selflessly, and SERVE others as an expression of Christian love

Focal Verses: Genesis John 13:1-15, 34-35

1There was a man named Nicodemus, a Jewish religious leader who was a Pharisee. 
After dark one evening, he came to speak with Jesus. “Rabbi,” he said, “we all know that God has sent you to teach us. Your miraculous signs are evidence that God is with you.”
Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.”
“What do you mean?” exclaimed Nicodemus. “How can an old man go back into his mother’s womb and be born again?”
Jesus replied, “I assure you, no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit. 
Humans can reproduce only human life, but the Holy Spirit gives birth to spiritual life.
So don’t be surprised when I say, ‘You must be born again.’ 
The wind blows wherever it wants. Just as you can hear the wind but can’t tell where it comes from or where it is going, so you can’t explain how people are born of the Spirit.”
“How are these things possible?” Nicodemus asked.
10 Jesus replied, “You are a respected Jewish teacher, and yet you don’t understand these things? 
11 I assure you, we tell you what we know and have seen, and yet you won’t believe our testimony. 
12 But if you don’t believe me when I tell you about earthly things, how can you possibly believe if I tell you about heavenly things? 
13 No one has ever gone to heaven and returned. But the Son of Man has come down from heaven. 
14 And as Moses lifted up the bronze snake on a pole in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, 
15 so that everyone who believes in him will have eternal life.
34 For he is sent by God. He speaks God’s words, for God gives him the Spirit without limit. 
35 The Father loves his Son and has put everything into his hands. 

Monday --- "Laban Arranges to Wash Servant's Feet" -- Genesis 24:24-33
Tuesday --- "Brothers Provided Water to Wash Feet" -- Genesis 43:20-25
Wednesday --- "Servants and Masters, but Same Lord" -- Ephesians 4:6-9
Thursday --- "Peter Denies Jesus Three Times" -- John 13:36-38; 18:15-18, 25-27
Friday --- "Jesus Betrayed by a Trusted Disciple" -- Psalm 41:8-10; John 13:21-30
Saturday --- "Mary Anoints Jesus' Feet with Perfume" -- John 12:1-7
Sunday --- "Jesus Loved Disciples; Washed Their Feet" -- John 13:1-15, 34-35

November 8th: Abiding Love

November 08, 2020 -  November 12, 2020   Time: 9:00 AM

"Abiding Love"

Background: John 15:4-17
Devotional Reading: Psalm 80:7-19
(Keep in Mind)

"I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in himim, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing
." (John 15:5, KJV)

Aim for Change
By the end of the lesson, we will COMPREHEND how the metaphor of the vine and the branches applies to Jesus and those who follow Him; YEARN for a more intimate, life-giving relationship with Jesus; and COMMIT to keeping Christ's commandments and abiding in his love.

Focal Verses: John 15:4-17

Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me.
“Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing. 
Anyone who does not remain in me is thrown away like a useless branch and withers. Such branches are gathered into a pile to be burned. 
But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted! 
When you produce much fruit, you are my true disciples. This brings great glory to my Father.
“I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love. 
10 When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. 
11 I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow! 
12 This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. 
13 There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 
14 You are my friends if you do what I command. 
15 I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me. 
16 You didn’t choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name. 
17 This is my command: Love each other.

Daily Bible Readings:
Monday --- "God Is Disappointed with Israel" -- Isaiah 5:1-7
Tuesday --- "God Will Redeem Israel" -- Isaiah 27:2-6
Wednesday --- "Believers Continue God's Work" -- John 14:8-14
Thursday --- "Jesus Freely Lays Down His Life" -- John 10:11-18
Friday --- "Facing the World as Jesus Did" --- John 15:18-25
Saturday --- "Jesus Tends to His Vineyard" -- John 15:1-3
Sunday --- "Always Love One Another" -- John 15:4-17