NEW Quarterly Series Announced
I am excited to announce our Sabbath school series on Spiritual Formation for 2023. This adult Bible study series comes to you by request. Over the last year, I’ve asked church leaders and teachers what kind of material they needed from the Bible Advocate Press. The overwhelming response was for lessons that aid local churches in developing deeper, intentional, and resilient disciples. So these lessons are our attempt to fulfill that request.
The Christian life lends itself to many metaphors. This series looks at four: our walking in the way, climbing the mountain, cultivating fruit, and growing up. These express what Eugene Peterson called “a long obedience in the same direction.” It is a process — the walk, the climb, the fruit, the growth — and is a product of time and dedication and discipline. This is what authentic formation, the second word in our title, entails. It’s what lifelong discipleship looks like.
But the first word is even more important. Spiritual formation isn’t self-help or a personal program. It is yielding ourselves to the transforming power of the Holy Spirit. The journey to maturity isn’t taken alone. The Spirit goes with us, guiding us. As Paul said, “If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit”; “as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God” (Galatians 5:25; Romans 8:14). This is what Jesus’ disciples do and who they are.
The four quarterlies in this series are about our life and journey in the Holy Spirit toward conformity to Christ. The first lessons will explore the spiritual disciplines, the foundation of discipleship. Next we hike up the mountain and hear the Lord’s Beatitudes anew (Matthew 5). Third quarter, we will visit the orchard of the fruits of the Spirit (Galatians 5). We conclude the series by seeing how the Holy Spirit is growing up the body of Christ in a community of faith (Romans 12). We need each other on this journey.
Special thanks to my writing collaborators for this series. Pastor Kurt Lang and Elder Whaid Rose join me with years of experience in preaching and teaching on these very subjects. We hope that you are equipped and inspired by these lessons.
Create a standing order at our online store and get all of our new studies as they’re released each quarter. https://cog7.org/online-store/standing-order-for-curriculum-materials-printed-and-digital/