Monday, October 14, 2013

The Curriculum of Jesus

Over the past several months I have been reading the A.B. Bruce Classic: The Training of the Twelve  with several friends. This book is a masterpiece, but it is a tough read because of the writing style common in theological books of the nineteenth century. I think many today are missing out on the gems in this book. To that end, I plan to paraphrase sections of the book in this space over the next few weeks. I will do my best to capture the thoughts of the author while updating the language. I appreciate your feedback.

For today, I will merely list what Bruce says are the main areas that Jesus focused on as he trained the twelve in fulfillment of his promise to take common fishermen and make them fishers of men. He taught these things primarily by having people be with Him and by relying on the training of experience and the future teaching of Holy Spirit.These are the topics:

1.                   The nature of the Kingdom
2.                   Prayer
3.                   Freedom and true holiness
4.                   His own person (Jesus)
5.                   The cross & importance of His death
6.                   Humility
7.                   Self-Sacrifice
8.                   The leaven of Pharisaism and Sadduceeism
9.                   The mission of the Holy Spirit (the comforter)

How does this list correlate with yours? The first five would be on my list. I was struck while reading the book, with the amount of energy Jesus put into focusing on humility. I am also realizing that if we are serious about obeying the great commission and teaching people to obey Jesus, we might stray into Pharisaic legalism. So I see the value of number eight. I also was struck by how much Jesus relied on the future ministry of the Holy Spirit in the lives of the disciples. It's a pretty good list of topics and one that will impact me as I seek to invest in the next generation of Kingdom Leaders.

1 comment:

  1. Al, I was struck too not only on how much Jesus teaches on humility, but also how much he teaches on character, or "temper" as Bruce calls it. One thing that cannot be overstated: one of Jesus's top topics, if not the top topic, was himself (#4). He is the only one who can do this and be still be humble. We ought to emphasize the same topic.