Good Samaritan Ministries, located in Beaverton, is midway through its 2014 season of Bible Classes. Bible Class at Good Samaritan Ministries (GSM) is unique from nearly every other Biblical Class or Study available today. What makes it unique? The primary difference between GSM's classes and most other Biblical Studies is that rather than studying the Bible, GSM's Bible Class is centered around allowing the Bible to study us.
There are two key elements that work together to make these classes unique:
No Experience Necessary
One does not need to be an expert to teach the Word of God. In fact, some would argue that an advanced degree in a seminary actually hinders one's ability to teach. Sound strange? In our experience, we have found that a great majority of sermons and Bible studies tend to drive the audience to a somewhat premeditated, prepackaged conclusion.
There is generally nothing wrong with this. From our childhood we are taught to structure our essays and messages concisely so that at the beginning, the audience knows what your talking points will be and what they are supposed to get out of it. It is an approach that appeals to those who value efficiency.
This approach may work well in academic circles and “how to” books, yet it is a complete and total disaster when employed in an attempt to teach the Word of the Living God. The Word of God is alive. For the Bible to be anything more than a collection of stories mixed with cryptic narratives, it must be given free reign to move about the room and stir up the hearts of all those who have ears to hear.
Open the Bible as if You Have Never Read It Before
The holiness and perfection of the Bible allows us to learn something new each time that we read it. For this reason, it is imperative that the both the teacher and the class agree to open the Bible as if they have never read it before.
Many Christians have preconceived notions and prejudices regarding the parts of the Bible that must be overcome for the Word of God to move in a new way in their lives. Opening the Bible as if they have never read it before accomplishes this goal for most people. It frees the hearer to listen anew, to uncover diamonds in the rough, and to stop and smell the roses.
It is like stopping along an oft-travelled stretch of highway to take in the breathless beauty of a sunset. Opening the Bible as if one has never read it before allows the Word of God to accomplish its primordial purpose:
The Spiritual rebirth of all who have eyes to see and ears to hear.
The 2014 GSM Bible Class series will continue every Wednesday evening at 6:00pm in the Beaverton Office through March 12th.