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*[PART I (THEMES FROM THE OLD TESTAMENT)]*
Good parental responsibility refers to the duties and obligations that parents have to ensure the well-being and overall development of their children. It involves providing for the child’s physical, emotional, and social needs, as well as setting boundaries and expectations, providing guidance and discipline when necessary, and fostering a safe and nurturing environment for the child to grow and thrive in.
King Asa is known in the Bible as one of the good kings of Judah who did what was right in the eyes of the Lord. He was also a good parent who set a good example for his children and brought them up in the way of the Lord.
Firstly, King Asa made sure his children were brought up in a God-fearing environment. He removed all the idols and high places that were degrading the worship of God in Judah. He even removed his own mother from her position as the queen mother because she was promoting worship of false gods. Asa’s decision to reform the worship of God in Judah created an environment where his children could grow up to know and love God.
Secondly, King Asa encouraged his children to follow God’s ways. He was not content with just removing the idols, but he actively sought to promote the worship of God. He took steps to ensure that the people of Judah were instructed in the ways of God. He even gathered together the people of Judah to make a covenant with God to follow His ways. Asa took the lead in following God’s ways, and this set an example for his children to follow.
Thirdly, King Asa showed concern and care for the spiritual well-being of his children. When his son became sick, Asa sought the Lord for help and healing. He did not rely on his own abilities, but he sought God’s direction. He did everything in his power to help his son, but ultimately he trusted in the Lord’s sovereignty over all things.
In summary, King Asa proved to be a good parent in the Bible by seeking to create a God-fearing environment for his children to grow up in, encouraging them to follow God’s ways, and showing concern and care for their spiritual well-being. His actions and leadership in following God’s ways set an example for his children to follow.
The division in Israel during King Rehoboam’s reign was caused by his unwise decision to reject the request of the elders to lighten the burden placed on them by his father, King Solomon. Instead, he followed the advice of his young friends who suggested that he increase the burden on the people. This decision led to the rebellion of the people of Israel against the house of David.
The elders of Israel had approached King Rehoboam and requested him to lighten the burden that his father, King Solomon, had placed on them. They said, “Your father made our yoke heavy. Now, therefore, lighten the hard service of your father and his heavy yoke upon us and we will serve you” (1 Kings 12:4). Rehoboam asked them to come back after three days for his response.
During the three-day period, Rehoboam consulted with two groups of advisers. The first group was the elders who had served as advisers to his father, King Solomon. They advised him to listen to the people and to lighten their burden. The second group was his peers, who were young men like him. They advised him to make the burden even heavier.
When the elders returned on the third day, Rehoboam rejected their request and spoke harshly to them, following the advice of his young friends. The people of Israel were angered by this and rebelled against the house of David. They said, “What portion have we in David? neither have we inheritance in the son of Jesse: to your tents, O Israel: now see to thine own house, David. So Israel departed unto their tents” (1 Kings 12:16).
This led to the division of Israel into two kingdoms, the northern kingdom of Israel and the southern kingdom of Judah. Jeroboam was made the king of Israel, while Rehoboam reigned in Judah. The division was a fulfillment of a prophecy, but it was also caused by Rehoboam’s unwise decision to follow the advice of his young friends and reject the counsel of the elders who had served his father.
(i) God would always punish anyone who disobeys Him no matter his position
(ii) When we are in position of leadership, it is advisable to listen to the voice of those we are leading and consider their social well-being anytime we want to impose any tax, labour, law, etc.
(iii) Solomon was at various times warned to desist from his wrong doings and returm to the Lord, but he refused, we should learn to obey the voice of the Lord in all our undertakings so that we may succeed and prosper
(iv) Owing to his wisdomn and wealth Solomon felt arrogant and proud.This contributed to his downfall.
*[PART II(THEMES FROM THE EPISTLES)]*
Humility is a state of beirg humble, meek, lowly ad modest. A humble person is not arrogant. Humility is one of the attribues of a good Christian.
(I) a humble person is not arrogant
(II) a humble person is not proud
(III) a humble person admits his mistakes when corrected and is always open to correction
(IV)a humble person treats everyone with respect and kindness irrespective of their social,ethic,religious status
(I)God loves the humble-minded and exalts him but debases the proud.
(II)God gives grace to the humble; he or she reaps the reward of humility
(III)Humility creates unity, understanding and progress in the society
(IV) humble person renders selfless services to the Society: he puts the interest of the society first in whatever he or she does
We can learn from the letter of Paul that all the nine gifts of the spirit are very important. In his example, he stated that God has arranged the different parts of the body to be mutually independent and necessary for the existence of the entire body while some parts may seem to be weak they are indispensable. The parts which we consider less honourable are vested with greater honour; the unpresentable parts are treated with greater modesty which other presentable parts do not require. Every part of the body is interconnected.
The same is true for the body of Christ. the body was created by God for unity and not discord, for connection and not competition. Every part of the body was strategically placed. In the body of Christ, God appointed apostles, prophets, teachers, workers of miracles, helpers, administrators and speakers in various kinds of things. They must all use their gift to the glory of God and for the church growth.
A spiritual gift is meant for the good of the entire church community, they are to promote good relationship among Christians in the community of faith. Spiritual gifts should make the church united and not divide the church. As such, unity is key. Above all spiritual gifts are given to the church to glorify the name of God therefore no one should be pompous in the use of his or her gift.
(i) We must say no to discrimination in the church
(ii)We must avoid all forms of pride or placing a gift above other gifts.
(iii) There may be diversity. However, there must be unity in our diversity.
*[PART III(THEMES FROM THE FOUR GOSPELS AND ACTS OF THE APOSTLES)]*
The church at Lydda and Joppa was established by scattered Christians who settled there after they flee from the persecution in Jerusalem. This territory was successfully evangelized by Philip and later visited by Peter to perform the miracles of healing.
At Joppa, there was a disciple called Tabitha or Dorcas. She was full of good works and acts of charity. She died suddenly and was laid in an upper room. The disciples sent two men down to Joppa to entreat Peter who was residing at Lydda to come without delay. Peter followed them to Joppa and was taken to the upper room. He put the weeping disciples outside and knelt and prayed.
Turning to the body he said, “Tabitha, rise” Dorcas opened her eyes and saw Peter, Peter gave her his hands and lifted her. He presented her alive to the saints. Many believed in the Lord and Peter stayed in Joppa for many days with one Simon, a tanner.
(i) We should obey the great commission like Peter
(ii) With God all things are possible
The trial of Jesus by the high priest took place after he was arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane. The high priest, Caiaphas, gathered the chief priests and elders of the people to question Jesus.
“Then the chief priests and the whole Sanhedrin met together to find some false evidence against Jesus, to put him to death.” Throughout the trial, various witnesses were called to testify against Jesus, but their statements were conflicting and unreliable. “At last two men came forward and said, ‘This man said, “I am able to destroy the Temple of God and rebuild it in three days.”’Despite the lack of concrete evidence, the high priest continued to press Jesus for a confession. “The high priest stood up and said to him, ‘Have you no answer? What is it that they testify against you?’ But Jesus was silent.” Caiphas then asked Jesus if he was the Son of God, to which Jesus replied, “You say so. But I tell you, from now on you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power and coming on the clouds of heaven.” This enraged the high priest and he accused Jesus of blasphemy, ultimately leading to his conviction and sentencing to death. “Then the high priest tore his clothes and said, ‘He has blasphemed! Why do we still need witnesses? You have now heard his blasphemy. What is your verdict?’ They answered, ‘He deserves death.'”
verdict?’ They answered, ‘He deserves death.'” – Matthew 26:65-66
Thus, the trial of Jesus by the high priest was a clear demonstration of the corruption and injustice present in the religious and political institutions of his time.
(i) Lack of faith or doubt in God’s existence
(ii)Suffering or negative experiences that cause one to question God’s goodness
(iii) Influence of opposing belief systems or philosophies
(iv) Rebellion or disobedience to God’s commands.