Saturday, October 8, 2011


a lesson from Matthew 23 using Nooma 04

Matthew 23:1-12
Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, “The scribes and the Pharisees teach with Moses’ authority. So be careful to do everything they tell you. But don’t follow their example, because they don’t practice what they preach. They make loads that are hard to carry and lay them on the shoulders of the people. However, they are not willing to lift a finger to move them. They do everything to attract people’s attention. They make their headbands large and the tassels on their shawls long. They love the place of honor at dinners and the front seats in synagogues. They love to be greeted in the marketplaces and to have people call them Rabbi. But don’t make others call you Rabbi, because you have only one teacher, and you are all followers. And don’t call anyone on earth your father, because you have only one Father, and he is in heaven. Don’t make others call you a leader, because you have only one leader, the Messiah. The person who is greatest among you will be your servant. Whoever honors himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be honored.” 

1) What do you think is Jesus’ big point here?

2) What do you suppose the Pharisees and scribes thought about it?

We’re going to watch Nooma 04: Sunday. (Trailer below.) It’s based on that passage above and Mark 7:1-22. Try to keep track of what you notice. If there’s a place you want to stop and talk, or rewind and rewatch, just say so.

3) What questions do you have?

4) What’s the big idea? How does it connect to what we read in Phillipians 3:7-9?
These things that I once considered valuable, I now consider worthless for Christ. It’s far more than that! I consider everything else worthless because I’m much better off knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. It’s because of him that I think of everything as worthless. I threw it all away in order to gain Christ and to have a relationship with him.

5) Jot down one thing you want to remember from this. Here's the trailer for Nooma 04. I'm sure you can find the whole video online, but I also urge you to support the ministry. They're doing downloads of individual Noomas for only $1.99 each now, or watch online for $1.00. 

Rob Bell makes reference to the Shema Israel here, and I agree that it goes well with what Jesus is saying. It's even how Jesus answers the scribes who ask him what the greatest commandment is. This presentation of the Shema is from Judaism 101, where you can see and hear the Hebrew, also:

Sh'ma Yis'ra'eil Adonai Eloheinu Adonai echad.
Hear, Israel, the Lord is our God, the Lord is One.

Barukh sheim k'vod malkhuto l'olam va'ed.
Blessed be the Name of His glorious kingdom for ever and ever.

V'ahav'ta eit Adonai Elohekha b'khol l'vav'kha uv'khol naf'sh'kha uv'khol m'odekha.
 And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.

V'hayu had'varim ha'eileh asher anokhi m'tzav'kha hayom al l'vavekha.
And these words that I command you today shall be in your heart.

V'shinan'tam l'vanekha v'dibar'ta bam
And you shall teach them diligently to your children, and you shall speak of them

b'shiv't'kha b'veitekha uv'lekh't'kha vaderekh uv'shakh'b'kha uv'kumekha
when you sit at home, and when you walk along the way, and when you lie down and when you rise up.

Uk'shar'tam l'ot al yadekha v'hayu l'totafot bein einekha.
And you shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be for frontlets between your eyes.

Ukh'tav'tam al m'zuzot beitekha uvish'arekha.
And you shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

The Shema almost always brings this song to mind:

Photo credit: Marion Doss @ Flickr. My Aunt Gert (Gertrude Golden) taught in a place like this.

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