Yesterday, I wrote a pretty straightforward letter to those who teach others in our churches, small groups or wherever they might teach. In the sense of fairness, this morning I thought I would spread the wealth and talk to students for a few minutes.
Be there. Unlike the calling to teach or preach, the calling to be a good student of God’s Word is not specific; it is a general call issued to all believers. Friends, read our verse above; to study diligently in the Bible is just not something our Father asks us to do. It is a command; He has directed that we study His Word. Before anybody goes off on me, I am NOT saying God has commanded us to be in Sunday School every week; that would be legalistic and wrong. On the other hand, He has clearly commanded us to be students of His Word. Sunday School and other training courses provide a wonderful opportunity to do that.
Be prepared. Study ahead of time. Friends, if you come to Sunday School with the expectation that this is where you will first see the lesson, then you are behind from the very beginning. Read the lesson. Read the associated Scripture. Read any daily devotionals that may come along with the lesson. The men and women who are there to teach you have likely spent some hours preparing to teach you; the least you can to is spend just a bit of time getting ready.
Be a participant. First, come to class ready to answer questions. Most good teachers I know ask questions of students, often unexpectedly. Be ready, as it might be you. Most teachers I know welcome questions and student participation from those in a class. Some leave time at the end for general discussion and participation. Some lesson plans have pre-planned discussion questions. We generally don’t get to thrust our hands up during the sermon and ask questions or clarify a point. Sunday school is the perfect place for that and most teachers welcome it.
Be a Berean.
“ These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so” Acts 17:11
This is simple. Don’t ever believe something just because some teacher or preacher said it. Fact check us, every time. We might simply be mistaken about something; we might be false teachers with evil intent. Be a Berean. The bad news is that this means students will study three times for any given lesson. You need to study before you arrive, listen and apply yourself while you are there, and study what you were taught.
That sound like an investment, doesn’t it?