August’s Worship For All (catchup online here) finished the theme of the Bible with a look at the New Testament.
In conclusion, the Gospels tell us the story of Jesus - the big miracles and the small encounters and are very important but to really understand what it means to follow Jesus, to really know what Jesus has planned for us - you need the whole of the New Testament.
The New Testament is a ‘build a Christian’ kit. Not in the Ikea or Lego sense of “put prayer A in service B”. But in the sense of a set of stories of people who struggled, who made mistakes, who sometimes did amazing things, and above all grappled with what it meant to live as children of God; as Christians. We learn from these stories. God uses them. So read them! Mark’s gospel is a good place to start and the Acts of the Apostles is a roller-coaster story. Read and understand how all that happens relates to the Old Testament story, to God’s big plan for us all; recognise how they are stories of their time and place - and yet they speak to us across the centuries. Every time we read these stories, we find something new in them, because that, it seems, is how God likes it! Read the stories and hear God speak. Hear God speak and learn!
The New Testament was summarised in 50 words…
Gabriel announced Mary bore Jesus taught Disciples followed Jesus crucified Hope gone Jesus risen Christ ascended Spirit flowed Peter spoke People saved Churches grew Saul persecuted Peter imprisoned Saul envisioned Paul travelled Faith spread Churches planted Paul wrote Leaders supported John saw Jesus revealed Death defeated God honoured New Jerusalem