Click below to download the Cornerstone Connections leader’s guide and student lesson. This week’s resources also include two lesson plans and a discussion starter video which offer different ways of looking at the topic. Each lesson plan includes opening activities, scripture passages, discussion questions, and real-life applications.
Humble Hero (Desire of Ages)
Chapter 37 - The First Evangelists
The thought of witnessing to our faith in God can often make us feel anxious and intimidated: What do I say? However, our witness can be merely one story away.
This lesson is going to show how Jesus’ ministry was actually bigger than we often realize. In fact, the 12 disciples were just the beginning of Jesus’ plan for change.
This activity will require as much or as little preparation as you are able to give it. The more you prepare the better this activity will go.
For either plan outlined below, divide the students into groups of about to 2-3 people. Tell them to visit 1-2 other Sabbath School classrooms depending on your church and the size of your group. Let them know they only have 5 minutes to be back in the room.
Best Plan: A week ahead of time contact the other Sabbath School leaders at your church and let them know that the youth will be making a short visit to their class. Have the students bring something refreshing like a bottle of water to each person, or some homemade cookies in snack bags for later consumption. Also let that class know that the youth are coming with a message that Jesus loves them.
Good Plan: If you are reading this the Friday night before Sabbath School, that’s OK. You probably won’t get to warn other Sabbath Schools that you are coming. Maybe you can scrounge up something to take to give the other Sabbath School members, but if not, just send a message of Jesus’ love to each Sabbath School and have the students return.
(Bonus points: Don’t just go to the children’s Sabbath School classes, visit the adults as well.)
Before we open our Bibles this morning I’d like you to discuss these questions:
This week we will be looking at something incredible that Jesus did. He let humans spread His special message. Think about it for a second. Jesus was here on earth, people could have heard about God from Him, but instead He gave the job of healing and teaching to not only the 12 disciples but also to an even bigger group of people. It is that group of 72 disciples that we will be focusing on this morning. I hope that as we learn you will see how important you are to the Kingdom of God and the task of spreading the good news of that Kingdom.
BIBLE STUDY GUIDE
(3x5 cards needed for final portion of study)
Perhaps you’ve heard of the synoptic gospels. They are Matthew, Mark, and Luke. They all share very similar stories and much of the time you can find the same story, from different perspectives, in each of those gospels. What is interesting is to find the stories in the synoptic gospels that are told by only one of the authors.
Today we are going to be looking at one of those stories. Before we jump to our main text I want to highlight that Jesus did something incredible with His small group of 12 disciples. Each of the synoptic writers records how Jesus sent His 12 disciples out on a little mini mission trip to get experience sharing the new “Kingdom of God” message (Matthew 10; Mark 6:7-11; Luke 9:1-6). However, today we want to talk about another group of missionaries that Jesus sent out that is found in Luke 10.
Read Luke 10:1.
1After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them two by two ahead of him to every town and place where he was about to go.
I hope that one of the things that you gleaned from your discussion is that even though we hear a lot about the 12 disciples in the gospel accounts, Jesus was thinking much bigger. Why? There are lots of reasons. Here are some, but feel free to add more:
1. He knew that He (God) wouldn’t be around to impress the crowds forever.
2. Humans actually might believe changed humans more than a deity.
3. It’s an important part of the discipleship process to make disciples.
4. It’s important to look to see where the Holy Spirit is leading you to do evangelism.
5. Add some of your own reasons here.
The next section is often used as an evangelism handbook. Read Luke 10:2-12.
2 These were his instructions to them: “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields. 3 Now go, and remember that I am sending you out as lambs among wolves. 4 Don’t take any money with you, nor a traveler’s bag, nor an extra pair of sandals. And don’t stop to greet anyone on the road.
5 “Whenever you enter someone’s home, first say, ‘May God’s peace be on this house.’ 6 If those who live there are peaceful, the blessing will stand; if they are not, the blessing will return to you. 7 Don’t move around from home to home. Stay in one place, eating and drinking what they provide. Don’t hesitate to accept hospitality, because those who work deserve their pay.
8 “If you enter a town and it welcomes you, eat whatever is set before you. 9 Heal the sick, and tell them, ‘The Kingdom of God is near you now.’ 10 But if a town refuses to welcome you, go out into its streets and say, 11 ‘We wipe even the dust of your town from our feet to show that we have abandoned you to your fate. And know this—the Kingdom of God is near!’ 12 I assure you, even wicked Sodom will be better off than such a town on judgment day.
Read Luke 10:16.
16 Then he said to the disciples, “Anyone who accepts your message is also accepting me. And anyone who rejects you is rejecting me. And anyone who rejects me is rejecting God, who sent me.”
I hope you are seeing how important your role is. I really believe that the story of these 72 missionaries/evangelists is a precursor to what Jesus expects all of us to do, and a reminder from Luke, who was writing primarily to the Gentile Christians, that being a disciple of Jesus isn’t some sort of super exclusive group.
We have to finish out the chapter because it talks about what gives God joy! And, you probably guessed it, it’s you. Let’s read and discuss how to bring joy to God.
Read Luke 10:17-24.
17 When the seventy-two disciples returned, they joyfully reported to him, “Lord, even the demons obey us when we use your name!”
18 “Yes,” he told them, “I saw Satan fall from heaven like lightning! 19 Look, I have given you authority over all the power of the enemy, and you can walk among snakes and scorpions and crush them. Nothing will injure you. 20 But don’t rejoice because evil spirits obey you; rejoice because your names are registered in heaven.”
21 At that same time Jesus was filled with the joy of the Holy Spirit, and he said, “O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, thank you for hiding these things from those who think themselves wise and clever, and for revealing them to the childlike. Yes, Father, it pleased you to do it this way.
22 “My Father has entrusted everything to me. No one truly knows the Son except the Father, and no one truly knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.”
23 Then when they were alone, he turned to the disciples and said, “Blessed are the eyes that see what you have seen. 24 I tell you, many prophets and kings longed to see what you see, but they didn’t see it. And they longed to hear what you hear, but they didn’t hear it.”
Something makes me smile when I read about a joyful Jesus. And nothing brings Jesus more joy than people coming to know God the Father and that the Father is full of love for His creation. And I’m always amazed at how important you and I are to making that happen.
This morning we started our time together practicing sharing Jesus’ life right here in our church, a (hopefully) safe place to do that. But this week it’s important for us to go ahead of Jesus (and behind the Holy Spirit) and share the kingdom message in our places of influence. Let’s make an action plan of how we will do that. (Leaders: Give students a 3x5 card or piece of paper to write their action plan on.) On your cards write the following:
Humble Hero, chapter 37 - The First Evangelists
For a Relational Bible Study (RBS) you’ll want to get into the Scripture passage and encourage the youth to imagine participating in the story while it’s happening. Then you will be able to better apply it to your own situation today.
You will need to ask God for the Holy Spirit to be present as your small group discusses the questions (no more than 3-6 people in a group is recommended). Start with the opening question. It is a personal question and the answer is unique for each individual. There is no right answer and nobody is an expert here, so don’t be surprised when you hear different responses. You are depending on the Holy Spirit to be present and to speak through your group. Say what God prompts you to say, and listen to what others share.
Take turns reading the chapter out loud. Follow that with giving the students some time to individually mark their responses to the questions (a PDF version of the handout is available as a download). This gives each person a starting point for responding when you start to share as a group. Next, begin the discussion by asking the students to share what they marked and why on each question as you work your way through. Feel free to take more time on some questions than others as discussion warrants.
Encourage each person in the group to apply what is discussed to their personal lives and to share with the group what they believe God wants them to do. Then ask them to pray that God will help each of them to follow through in doing so. Remind them to expect that God will show them ways to live out the message of this passage in the coming week, and that they are free to ask others in the group to help hold them accountable.
Be sure everyone takes time for personal applications before you end your Sabbath School time together.
Jesus’ ministry continued to expand as He traveled, preached, healed, and blessed. He had healed countless people who had been close to death and even raised some people from death, the most recent being Jairus’s daughter. Along with this miracle came another. A woman who had been bleeding for ten years was healed by simply touching the hem of Jesus’ robe and by her incredible and immense faith, she was healed. Jesus’ power was more apparent than ever.
As the disciples traveled over the countryside of Israel, they grew to know Jesus as more than a teacher but as also a friend. They saw and learned from His gentle way and wise words and this helped them conquer the strife and conflict they would face while carrying out their mission. They were being prepared for a mission of their own that would come sooner than they knew. In this lesson we will learn what the disciples, and we, were called to do. Would you have the courage to set out on the same mission they were sent on, to unselfishly help others and set yourself up to be persecuted?
LOST AND FOUND
What is your favorite way to help others?
Read Matthew 10:1-42.
1Jesus called his twelve disciples together and gave them authority to cast out evil spirits and to heal every kind of disease and illness. 2 Here are the names of the twelve apostles:
first, Simon (also called Peter),
then Andrew (Peter’s brother),
James (son of Zebedee),
John (James’s brother),
Matthew (the tax collector),
James (son of Alphaeus),
4 Simon (the zealot),
Judas Iscariot (who later betrayed him).
5 Jesus sent out the twelve apostles with these instructions: “Don’t go to the Gentiles or the Samaritans, 6 but only to the people of Israel—God’s lost sheep. 7 Go and announce to them that the Kingdom of Heaven is near. 8 Heal the sick, raise the dead, cure those with leprosy, and cast out demons. Give as freely as you have received!
9 “Don’t take any money in your money belts—no gold, silver, or even copper coins. 10 Don’t carry a traveler’s bag with a change of clothes and sandals or even a walking stick. Don’t hesitate to accept hospitality, because those who work deserve to be fed.
11 “Whenever you enter a city or village, search for a worthy person and stay in his home until you leave town. 12 When you enter the home, give it your blessing. 13 If it turns out to be a worthy home, let your blessing stand; if it is not, take back the blessing. 14 If any household or town refuses to welcome you or listen to your message, shake its dust from your feet as you leave. 15 I tell you the truth, the wicked cities of Sodom and Gomorrah will be better off than such a town on the judgment day.
16 “Look, I am sending you out as sheep among wolves. So be as shrewd as snakes and harmless as doves. 17 But beware! For you will be handed over to the courts and will be flogged with whips in the synagogues. 18 You will stand trial before governors and kings because you are my followers. But this will be your opportunity to tell the rulers and other unbelievers about me. 19 When you are arrested, don’t worry about how to respond or what to say. God will give you the right words at the right time. 20 For it is not you who will be speaking—it will be the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.
21 “A brother will betray his brother to death, a father will betray his own child, and children will rebel against their parents and cause them to be killed. 22 And all nations will hate you because you are my followers. But everyone who endures to the end will be saved. 23 When you are persecuted in one town, flee to the next. I tell you the truth, the Son of Man will return before you have reached all the towns of Israel.
24 “Students are not greater than their teacher, and slaves are not greater than their master. 25 Students are to be like their teacher, and slaves are to be like their master. And since I, the master of the household, have been called the prince of demons, the members of my household will be called by even worse names!
26 “But don’t be afraid of those who threaten you. For the time is coming when everything that is covered will be revealed, and all that is secret will be made known to all. 27 What I tell you now in the darkness, shout abroad when daybreak comes. What I whisper in your ear, shout from the housetops for all to hear!
28 “Don’t be afraid of those who want to kill your body; they cannot touch your soul. Fear only God, who can destroy both soul and body in hell. 29 What is the price of two sparrows—one copper coin? But not a single sparrow can fall to the ground without your Father knowing it. 30 And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. 31 So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.
32 “Everyone who acknowledges me publicly here on earth, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. 33 But everyone who denies me here on earth, I will also deny before my Father in heaven.
34 “Don’t imagine that I came to bring peace to the earth! I came not to bring peace, but a sword.
35 ‘I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. 36 Your enemies will be right in your own household!’
37 “If you love your father or mother more than you love me, you are not worthy of being mine; or if you love your son or daughter more than me, you are not worthy of being mine. 38 If you refuse to take up your cross and follow me, you are not worthy of being mine. 39 If you cling to your life, you will lose it; but if you give up your life for me, you will find it.
40 “Anyone who receives you receives me, and anyone who receives me receives the Father who sent me. 41 If you receive a prophet as one who speaks for God, you will be given the same reward as a prophet. And if you receive righteous people because of their righteousness, you will be given a reward like theirs. 42 And if you give even a cup of cold water to one of the least of my followers, you will surely be rewarded.”
1. Who would you want as your partner if you were the one Jesus was sending out?
2. Why do you think Jesus described the house of Israel as “lost sheep?”
3. What preparation do you think you would need if God were to send you on a mission?
4. Why should we not fear those who “kill the body”?
5. What did Jesus tell the disciples to do?
6. Why do you think that Jesus sent the disciples out in pairs? (select all that apply)
7. Jesus warned the disciples that they were to be persecuted and that is a fair warning for us today as well. What are some things we are called to do that may result in persecution for us?
8. What do you think Jesus meant when He said, “I did not come to bring peace but a sword”? Jesus was also the “Prince of Peace” and tells us to be peacemakers. How do all of these ideas fit together?
Throughout the entire time the disciples had followed Jesus, He was preparing them for a job they did not yet know they would have. They watched and learned how to treat others, how to deal with persecution, and how to heal the soul and body. Now, Jesus had told them their purpose and what they were to do and why. They watched as He was calm and gentle with the children, the sick, and the injured, but they also watched as he lashed out with a whip and overturned tables. They learned that while they were to bring peace, the peaceful way is not always effective. They would soon have to put all these lessons into action and set out on their own missions.
Serpents are known as some of the most crafty and intelligent creatures and doves as one of the gentlest. Jesus wants us to be both.
Teach Me How to Pray
By Kymone Hinds
It seems like such a simple request. It was a request made by the disciples to Jesus one day. They saw Him praying and were so impressed and impacted by His prayer that they wanted to learn to pray like Him.
Prayer can be one of the easiest things to do and one of the most difficult things at the same time. It’s like talking to a friend - that’s easy. It’s talking to a friend you can’t see or hear audibly – that’s hard. Let’s be honest, you look weird talking to someone that is invisible.
Even though God is unseen it does not mean that He is not accessible. He can be reached. He is just a prayer away. This guide will help you to connect with Him deeper and get more out of your time in prayer.
Help eliminate hunger. Purchase ready to eat and easy to open food items and assemble them in resealable plastic bags. Donate to shelters or use for street ministry.
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Re-use plastic bags for a great cause. Save plastic bags and convert them into a sleeping mat for the homeless.
Cost: Less than $5.00
Help small children learn at home. This easy sew bean bag craft can help children learn alphabets, numbers, or shapes.
Cost: Less than $5.00