This next week I'll be enjoying having the opportunity to lead our adults in our annual Summer Adult Bible Study series. We pattern this somewhat after the old January Bible Studies that were popular for many years among Southern Baptists and which I suspect some still observe.
We started doing these series my second year on staff at First Baptist here in Lee's Summit and have done so every year but one since that time. Our focus this year will be on the book of Galatians with its theme of the freedom we have in Christ. I've also been going through Phillip Yancey's What's So Amazing about Grace with a couple of guys and his insights on legalism dovetail quite well with Paul's emphasis in this letter.
The first several years we did these, we began with either testimonies of folks who had gone or recent missions trips, singing groups, etc., then we had refreshments followed by the Bible study. For the last couple of years, we've dispensed with the other speakers and activities (but not the refreshments of course--we are Baptists after all!). We typically have somewhere between 80 and 100 adults who attend the four-night study--not a bad turnout for a midsummer weeknight activity.
These weeks of the Summer Adult Bible Study series are about as close as I get now to my former days as a seminary professor, and I relish the opportunity to teach the Scriptures to some folks who want to go deeper into God's Word. Prayerfully, we will all also seek to apply the truths we discover to our daily lives.