Last Night's Bible Class
It is a rare time when our Bible Class focuses so much on me.
In our Wednesday night bible class, we are studying Saint Paul’s letter to the Romans, a wonderfully systematic letter written by a great follower and disciple of our Lord Jesus Christ. To read Romans to its fullest extent, you have to read it slow, in my opinion, pondering Saint Paul’s sentence and section structure to truly grasp what he is “getting at” in his letter. I know, I am reading a little bit more into studying Scripture than I should, but it actually makes sense and makes our study have a deep-rooted understanding of what it means to be a Christian, but more importantly, what it means to be a Lutheran.
We’ve been slogging through Romans for a couple of months and last night, we finally started Chapter 2. Yes, we took plenty of time to go through Chapter 1, but we also had a couple of weeks off in between.
However, last night we only finished 5 verses, and to be honest, 5 verses is being a little generous.
In a nutshell, we were talking about what Saint Paul meant at the end of Chapter 1 into Chapter 2 when talking about righteousness, the Law, and our individual lives, which led us to talk about the topic of judgment and keeping the Law of God.
And yes, I used myself as the example. Several times I raised my faults and failures (my sins) as the example of how I’ve fallen short of God’s glory. But more importantly, how my failures, when staring at the Law, has driven me to true repentance and a full understanding of what my God has done for me.
In a pure Lutheran sense, our study last night was very fulfilling since Luther and his writings were raised several times (by me) and how we can use his Small Catechism as a prayer book.
However, it was my “confession” of various things that made the class. In a quick nutshell, I admitted:
1. I don’t pray as fervently or as often as I should. I fail to pray the Small Catechism on a daily basis. And I fail to truly repent of my sins daily, usually just mouthing the words found in the liturgy without really grasping a hold of them.
2. I still have this “dislike” for several people, including one person who stabbed me in the back a number of years ago. Last night, i believe I used the phrase, to some extent, that if he was cross the street and I was in my car, I would have a deep-seeded impulse to hit the accelerator.
3. I mentioned that a couple of weeks ago, I spent time in a maturnity ward in a local hospital with a group of people who were watching over a little premature baby (by the way, the baby is doing very well). It turned out that three of the woman I was standing with and ended up praying with were “actors” in the adult film industry. Now, I didn’t know that they were in that field; a nurse at the hospital mentioned it to me after I walked away from them. My problem – when I ended up seeing these women later on, I couldn’t help but judge them in my mind for their “work.” Oh, and did I judge them!
Of course, there were some other smaller “confessions” that were mentioned by me, but I am not getting into them now.
The focus of my confessions were on the difficulties we righteous Christians have with truly grasping the Law, no matter how much we think we do or that we think we’re better than everyone else because he think we hold onto the Law and “keep it.” It was a fascinating bible class that lasted two hours. I am glad that we were able to have this time together.
OK – that means if you’re not busy, we pick up from where we left off next Wednesday, starting at 7:00pm. Our Midweek Divine Service begins our time together. Please join us at Saint Matthew’s in New Milford, NJ!