The Bible Class Teacher A Great Responsibility

I.          INTRODUCTION:

A.  SCRIPTURE READING: 

Ephesians 4:11-16  =  And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and  teachers;  For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:  Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:  That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;  But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:  From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.”

2 Timothy 1:11-13  =  Whereunto I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.  For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.  Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.

Acts 5:42  =  And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.

B.        THE SUBJECT OF OUR DISCUSSION IS ABOUT BIBLE TEACHERS AND THE GREAT RESPONSIBILITY THAT IS PLACED UPON THEM.

1.        The responsibility of teaching God’s Word is the same whether the one making the proclamation of God’s Word is done by:  apostles,  prophets, evangelists,  pastors, or  teachers [Ephesians 4:11]

2.        The apostle Paul said in II Timothy 1:11, he was “… Appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.

3.        Consider the events in Acts 5:12-42 ---

a.         The Apostles had been just before this been imprisoned [ Acts 5:18 ] for the “…signs and wonders wrought among the people…” [ Acts 5:12 ]

b.         An angel of the Lord opens the prison and they are again teaching the people in the temple  [ Acts 5:21 ]

c.         Peter said when told they were not to teach in the name of Christ said [ Acts 5:29 ]  =  …We ought to obey God rather than men.

d.         The apostles never ceased teaching about Christ:  And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ” [ Acts 5:42 ].

C.       DURING THE NEXT FEW MINUTES LET ME IMPRESS UPON YOU THAT WOULD TEACH THE MESSAGE OF CHRIST THE GRAVE RESPONSIBILITY THAT IS INVOLVED IN TEACHING.

II.       DISCUSSION:

A.  THAT WHICH IS TO PROCLAIMED OR TAUGHT BY THE BIBLE TEACHER IS THE BIBLE.

1.        The inspired Scriptures are the only message of God that is profitable for man.

2 Timothy 3:16-17  =  All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:  That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.”

2.        The gospel of Christ is the only key to, or power of, salvation.

Romans 1:16  =  For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

3.        Why teach only this gospel of Christ?

a.         It is the only message sent to man from God and it came by Christ.

John 1:1  =  In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God."  John 1:14 =  "And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

John 17:14  =  I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world."  John 17:17 =  "Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth." John 17:20-21 =  "Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;  That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.

b.         The Words of Christ will be that by  which we will be judged.

John 12:48-50  =  He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day.  For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak.  And I know that his commandment is life everlasting: whatsoever I speak therefore, even as the Father said unto me, so I speak.

c.         There will be nothing more given, coming from God as to what is to be taught.

Hebrews 1:1-2  =  God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets,  Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;

Hebrews 12:2  =  Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

B.        IT MATTERS NOT WHETHER THE WORD OF GOD IS PREACHED BY A PREACHER, OR IS TAUGHT BY A BIBLE CLASS TEACHER, THE SAME  RESPONSIBILITY IS  PLACED ON BOTH OF THEM FOR THE MESSAGE IS THE SAME..

1.        The responsibility is not determined by the number of people present, or whether it is in a large auditorium, small class room, or to a single individual  -- the message to  be taught is  only that which came from God.

2.        The responsibility is centered upon the message being that of God and not of  man.

3.        The responsibility is therefore just as great upon the preacher as it is the Bible class teacher, or even any one that  teaches the Bible to another.

a.         Two types of  proclaimers  are found to be in Paul.

2 Timothy 1:11  =  Whereunto I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.

b.         These two types of proclaimers are also found in the same connection in Acts 5:42.

Acts 5:42  =  And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.

(1)      Teach:  The Greek word is didasko, pronounced (did-as'-ko); Meaning “to teach”;  Translated – “teach”.

(2)      Preach:  The Greek word is euaggelizo, pronounced (yoo-ang-ghel-id'-zo); Meaning  “to announce good news, especially the gospel;  Translated – “declare, bring glad tidings, preach (the gospel)”.

c.         The responsibility of proclaiming the gospel is the same for both those that preach and those that teach  for the work of both preacher and teacher is declaring the gospel of Christ through teaching.

d.         The Lord sent out the apostles in the Great Commission to both preach and teach:

Matthew 28:19-20  =   Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:  Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

Mark 16:15-16  =  And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.  He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

C.       THE GREAT RESPONSIBILITY IS EMPHASIZED BY THESE  SCRIPTURES.

Comment:  In some  of the following you will notice the words “preach and preaching” are used, but the point in each of them is centered on the proclamation of the gospel of Christ whether it be by  preaching  or teaching.

1.        It was the preaching (teaching) that brought  the Church into existence in Acts chapter one.

2.        It will be the preaching (teaching) of the gospel of Christ, or God’s  inspired Scriptures, that will keep the Church active and alive in reaching out to save sinners.

Romans 1:16  =  For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

2 Timothy 3:16-17  =  All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:  That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

3.        The proclamation of the gospel is the  only means to save them that believe and they can not believe what they  have not been  taught. [See Romans 1:16]

1 Corinthians 1:21  =  For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that  believe.  

Comment:   The Greek word here for “preaching” is kerugma, pronounced  (kay'-roog-mah); Meaning “a proclamation (especially of the gospel by preaching it  and/or teaching it);  Translated – “preaching”.   

4.        Consider carefully the preaching (teaching) in Romans 10:14-15 --  How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?  And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!

5.        Paul had this say about the great responsibility of preaching (teaching):      I Corinthians 9:16  =  For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!

6.        The teaching of many false prophets must be shown to be in error and this can only be done by teaching.

1 John 4:1  =  Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.

7.        The perverting of the gospel must be shown to be in opposition  to the gospel  of Christ, and  trouble to His church.

Galatians 1:6-9  =  I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel:  Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.  But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.  As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

8.        The pressing need of teaching man that which is wrong and that which is right to  enable him to be perfect in Christ.

Colossians 1:28  =  Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus:

9.        Paul charge Timothy to give serious attention to his preaching (teaching) with these words:

II Timothy 4:1-4  =  I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom;  Preach (teach, JHB) the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.  For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;  And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.

10.    Paul also had this to say to Timothy  in regard to his teaching:

I Timothy 2:7  =  Whereunto I am ordained a preacher, and an apostle, (I speak the truth in Christ, and lie not;) a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and verity.

I Timothy 4:11-16  =  These things command and teach.   Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.  Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine.  Neglect not the gift that is in thee, which was given thee by prophecy, with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery.  Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all.  Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee.

(1)      Be an example to the believers in word, conversation, love, spirit, faith and purity. [ I Timothy 4:12 ]

(2)      Give attention  to (meditate upon) your reading, exhortation, and doctrine.  [ I Timothy 4:13-15 ]

(3)      Give careful consideration to yourself, to the doctrine, and the application of them.  [ I Timothy 4:16 ]

(4)      A failure to do so will make the salvation of yourself and those that you teach void.  [ I Timothy 4:16 ]

11.    Christ summed up the great responsibility of  teaching (preaching)  the Word that came from God.

John 12:48  =  He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day.

12.    The Psalmist David wrote in Psalms 119:89  =  Forever, O Lord, thy word is settled in heaven.

D.       THE GREAT RESPONSIBILITY PLACED UPON THE TEACHER OF GOD’S WORD IS HELPING IN  THE   DEVELOPING OF THE SPIRITUAL NEEDS OF MANKIND:

1.        To be converted.

2.        The Need to be instructed in the Truth about God and man.

a.         Man’s relationship to God.

b.         Man’s relationship to his fellowman.

3.        To grow in character (spiritually).

4.        To enrich man’s spiritual life in Christian service.

5.        To properly be guided in understanding a Christian in:

a.         The Church.

b.         The home.

c.         The community.

6.        To accept Christian responsibility in serving the Lord.

7.        To strengthen others not be misled by every wind of doctrine by:

a.         Teaching correctly  Scriptures that are twisted out of context.

 Ephesians 4:14  =  That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;

2 Peter 3:16-18  =  As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.  Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness.  But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.

b.         Teaching the correct plan of salvation.

c.         Teaching  the conduct of man in every day living

(1)      Children are constantly being born and growing up.

(2)      Strangers are moving in.

(3)      New converts.

(4)      Failure of some to grow up as they should [Hebrews 5:12].

E.        SOME CAUTIONS  FOR TEACHERS ALSO EMPHASIZE THE GREAT RESPONSIBILITY PLACED UPON THEM:

1.        Do not attempt to teach what is not assuredly true.

2.        Do not undertake to teach what you do not understand.

3.        Do not try to teach, or explain, what cannot be explained.

4.        Do not waste time teaching what does not need to be taught.

5.        Do not teach more than the Word of God, nor less than the Word of God.

Deuteronomy 4:2  =  Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you."  
Deuteronomy 12:32  = "
What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it.

Jeremiah 26:2  =  Thus saith the LORD; Stand in the court of the LORD's house, and speak unto all the cities of Judah, which come to worship in the LORD's house, all the words that I command thee to speak unto them; diminish not a word:

Revelation 22:18-19 =  For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:  And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

III.    CONCLUSION:

A.  IN ESSENCE, THE MAIN RESPONSIBILITY OF THE BIBLE TEACHER, OR PREACHER, IS TO PROCLAIM THE  BIBLE TO MAN, WITH ONLY ONE PURPOSE IN MIND – THE SALVATION OF MAN’S SOUL.

B.   THE TEACHING OF GOD’S  WORD SHOULD BE THE PERSUASIVE WORD OF GOD AND NOT A SHOW OF MAN’S WISDOM.

1 Corinthians 2:1-5  =  And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God.  For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.  And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.  And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power:  That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.

C.       GIVE SERIOUS THOUGHT TO THESE WORDS FROM PSALM 119, IN CLOSING:

Psalms 119:102-106  =  I have not departed from thy judgments: for thou hast taught me.  How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!  Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way.  Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.  I have sworn, and I will perform it, that I will keep thy righteous judgments.

Psalms 119:112-116  =  I have inclined mine heart to perform thy statutes alway, even unto the end.  I hate vain thoughts: but thy law do I love.  Thou art my hiding place and my shield: I hope in thy word.  Depart from me, ye evildoers: for I will keep the commandments of my God.  Uphold me according unto thy word, that I may live: and let me not be ashamed of my hope.

Psalms 119:124-130  =  Deal with thy servant according unto thy mercy, and teach me thy statutes.  I am thy servant; give me understanding, that I may know thy testimonies.  It is time for thee, LORD, to work: for they have made void thy law.  Therefore I love thy commandments above gold; yea, above fine gold.  Therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right; and I hate every false way.  Thy testimonies are wonderful: therefore doth my soul keep them.  The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple.

Psalms 119: 133-135  =  Order my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me.  Deliver me from the oppression of man: so will I keep thy precepts.  Make thy face to shine upon thy servant; and teach me thy statutes.

Psalms 119:89  =  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven.

Psalms 119:160  =  The sum of thy word is truth;  and every one of thy righteous ordinances endureth for ever.  [ASV]

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