Looking to grow in your understanding of God’s word and how it applies to your life? One of the many Next Steps available at Hoboken Grace this fall is the nine-week Story Study series — four courses exploring Genesis, John, Acts and Romans.
Each class will break down a book sentence by sentence, while also looking at these stories in a larger context — allowing you to see the role they play in God’s story and your story.
With just a few weeks before the Story Studies kick off, we asked each instructor what you’ll get out of their class.
Amy (leading the Genesis study, Sundays, 9:30-10:30 a.m.)
When I started to follow Christ, I realized I needed to know more of who He is and who He says I am. I grew up going to church and hearing Bible stories in Sunday School, but I never really read the Bible for myself until I was in my 30s.
After deciding I wanted to follow Him with my life, I realized I needed to know more of who He is and who He says I am. As I began to read the Bible, I discovered it was exciting, and the more I got to know God, the more I wanted to know Him better. I needed to know what God said about things so that I could follow Him. Without studying His word for myself, I was really just depending on who others said He was and what He could do.
I now have the exciting opportunity to teach Sunday Studies and watch others discover more of who He is. I have loved watching the people in the classes become more aware of God’s love for them and witnessing the actions that truth has led them to take in their own lives. I encourage anyone who has a desire to know Him more to join one of the Studies. You don’t have to have any previous Bible knowledge or you can come with plenty of Bible knowledge. God always shows us something more when we are in His word.
Jason (leading the Acts study, Sundays, 11 a.m.-12 p.m.)
Jesus has just returned to the Father, and his band of early followers are left to wonder how they will accomplish the goal of spreading the good news about Him to the entire world. Starting from this point, the book of Acts tells the story of the early church — its beginnings, its challenges and its amazing growth. This study will walk through the text, focusing not only on the history of the early church, but how this story impacts our lives today.
Rob (leading the John study, Wednesdays, 8-9:30 p.m.)
Sometimes life throws you a curve ball, and it can feel like everything is falling apart. In that moment, many believers are drawn to prayer and the Bible for guidance. But sometimes, the emotions of the challenging time make it hard to think clearly.
N. T. Wright describes the virtues of Bible study like this, as he comments on Romans 12:2’s concept of renewing the mind: “Here, in fact, is one of the major differences between virtue ethics and other schemes of thought: the thinking is front-loaded. A person relying on a duty- or rule-based ethic, faced with a challenge or dilemma, needs to think on the spot: Is there a rule? Is there a duty? A person following a spontaneity ethic, of course, won’t want to think at all. For someone developing a virtue ethic, on the other hand, the hard thinking has already been done some time before a particular crisis or challenge presents itself. The character has been formed by conscious choice and habit. Whether or not there is time for thought, the emergency will be met and dealt with.”
And so, in a weekly Story Study, we are able to work and talk together as a group about some of the key wisdom of the Christian faith. As we wrestle with these ideas together, we are front-loading the thinking, developing a deeper relationship with God that we can and will draw on whenever life’s challenges come our way.
Chris High Sr. (leading the Romans study, Tuesdays, 8-9 p.m.)
Opening a present that is too good to be true. Many of us have accepted the gospel and carry it around with us. We talk of how precious the present is to us, how hard it is to live by, how we need to be better at living it out. But if you do not understand Romans, you probably have never opened it. In this class we open Romans in a way that will change you forever. You will experience the goodness of God in ways you did not know were possible. You will discover a grace that will transform you from the inside out. You will grasp the argument of Romans and how the pieces all fit together so you can use this present the rest of your life. All of which will leave you saying, “This is too good to be true.”
To learn more about the Story Study classes and other Next Steps at Hoboken Grace, click here.