I started a bible study at Ntare school for the 8th graders in my literature class. Now I have a hard time figuring out why over 40 of them signed up, even showing up two days early, or on the day, two hours early. A) This could be God giving them a hunger for the word B) It could be my american-ness C) it could be that I cooked spaghetti. I’ve always been of the opinion that a little incentive with bible study doesn’t hurt. Flat out, I’ll tell you that girls were the reason I kept coming back to Focus in high school – but it’s a good thing they were there.
No girls here though.
We’ve started going through the book of Luke from Chapter one. No agenda except to open the book and see what God says to us. I like bible studies that are historical, so I am looking up facts and context as much as I can, eg. (Herod, where nazareth is, how far Mary had to walk to visit Elizabeth). I am, however, using Mark Driscoll’s sermons on Luke as jumping off points. He is taking three years to go through Luke with Mars Hill Church, and the coolest part is that he took a camera crew to Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Nazareth, and other biblical locations Luke went to conduct his investigation. The boys enjoyed those video clips.
From the amazing wealth of knowledge these boys have about all topics, bible espeically, it’s safe to say many of them come from christian homes. My big prayer is a) that the boys will understand the true gospel and the true storyline of scripture as they grow and b) that they will be strengthened in their lives by bible studies like these, not just filling their heads with facts. My radar with them is, like many of the heavily-churched in Uganda, they will come from the Peter side of Galatians 2. If you haven’t read Galatians 2 recently, go read it. You’ll remember that Paul confronts Peter about being afraid of the circumcision crowd and their powerful legalistic pressure. While many of the students can be very moral, they can easily fall in the trap of being worksy (God is pleased with me because I don’t sin) or judgmental (we don’t sin like these people do…)
Please pray that the bible would be the bible and would begin to help boys at Ntare piece together a theology of truth in love. It’s likely many of these boys will be the next generations of Ugandan leaders.