One of the great privileges of our time in the States was having the opportunity to teach an adult Sunday School class at 2 of our supporting Churches. At Granada Heights Friends Church, I was able to teach on all of the Sundays in June from 10:00-10:45AM. At Morgan Hill Presbyterian Church, I was able to preach on the second Sunday morning in July and then teach the same class for 3 consecutive Thursday evenings from 7:00-8:30PM (wonderful snacks provided by my wonderful wife).
The class was called, "Jesus the Great Storyteller: An Introduction to the Parables of Jesus." I proposed this topic because, for the past several years here in Ukraine, I have been preaching through Jesus' parables. I guess I've probably covered about a dozen of them, so far. During that time, I've had to do some investigatory work on parables as a Biblical literary genre and have grown ever more aware of the need to sharpen my skills in this area if I want to keep producing quality sermons on the parables. These blessed congregations gave me the stimulus to do such skill sharpening by letting me teach the class. I am more and more enamored by these powerful stories the more I study them. They are so rich in revealing realities of the Kingdom of God and so radical in the claim that they make on the lives of Jesus' followers. I'll continue studying them for years to come while still only beginning to grasp their intended meaning and call to action.
I want to thank both congregations for the opportunity to teach and I want to thank those who attended the class (60-80 at GHFC and 15-20 at MHPC). I especially thank MHPC for recording everything and making it available online. Here's a link to the sermon page. The parable sermon was delivered on July 8. And here's a link to the class, which also includes a link to a PDF download of the class notes (lesson 3 has a bibliography of recommended books on the parables). Thanks to someone at GHFC for the super-cool graphic. And thanks to the Great Storyteller Himself or leaving us with these poignant stories that continue to clarify what Kingdom living is all about.
If you choose to listen, please don't hesitate to comment. Both commendations and criticisms are welcome.