Live Streams and Devotionals
We post here on Mondays or Tuesdays
BLBC YouTube posts devotionals at 9am: Saturdays 9am pastor Carlos Meléndez; Wednesdays 7pm Bible Study with Don Fraasch
BLBC Instagram posts devotionals at 5pm
In our present situation, Jan and I are reminded of the words the Apostle Paul wrote to his church family in Thessalonica, "But we brethren, being taken away from you for a short time in presence, not in heart, endeavored the more eagerly to see your face with great desire" (I Thess. 2:17).
I pray that you all are faring well and are experiencing the peace of God in the midst of this turmoil. Please, if any of you would like to talk or you need prayer, call me. I also want to let you know that Jan and I consulted with Sutter Health several weeks ago. We were told that we were no longer contagious and we are free to enter society again. Never-the-less, I only go to the church building occasionally when it looks like the church is unpopulated to pick up commentaries, to make a few phone calls from my office or to video my sermon on my phone. Jan makes sure to remind me to carry anti-bacterial wipes and Lysol spray to wipe down any surface I touch when I am there just to be extra safe!
I want to say a big THANK YOU to everyone who continues to put in time and effort to keep connected with each other and to produce things like videos of the service, prayers and praise, cleaning, taking care of finances and the building, serving each other and a hundred other ways you are finding to serve the Lord by serving our church, each other and our community. It is times like these that we are challenged to persevere in the midst of suffering and hardship. As James tells us, "My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect (mature) and complete, lacking nothing" (James 1:2-4).
In His service,
Zoom Bible Study (last week)
contact Jay or Mark for this week's outline and zoom.com times. For .docx see Podcasts-BibleStudies
Overview: This lesson is designed to awaken group members to the fact that when they put their faith in Christ it radically changed who they are on the inside which allows them to have a radical relationship with God.
Introduction: The purpose of this section is to get to know the other group members a little and introduce the topic:
1. Prayer: Begin by letting the group know that you want everyone to get to know each other and get to know Jesus as well. Pause and pray for just that. Also, write down and pray for specific requests members may have.
2. Say: In this week’s lesson Jesus explains spiritual birth by comparing to physical birth
1. Allow group members to guess the answers as you give them the following quiz:
1. What is the age of the oldest mother ever to give birth (Sarah in the Bible 90/ in modern history age 63,
2. Weight of largest baby born? (22 lbs, 8 oz).
3. Highest number of children born to one mother? (69,n16 sets of twins, 7 triplets, 4 quadruplets)
2. Have various group members share any facts or circumstances about their own birth they have learned.
Instruction: This section helps group members understand the miraculous nature of spiritual birth.
1. Select three group members to give a dramatic reading of John 3:1-12. The characters are: The Narrator, Nicodemus, and Jesus.
a. Say: Just as physical birth is necessary to enter the world, spiritual birth is required to have a relationship with God.
b. Say: Just as we can’t take credit for our physical birth, we cannot reach God on our own. Why?
a. The group to detect everything they we learn about Nicodemus in John 3:1-2.
b. Re-read John 3:9-12 and discuss how the conversation between Nicodemus and Jesus is going? Explain.
Observation: This section introduces the passage and helps group members
1. Have a volunteer Read John 3:11-13
2. Say: Just as we had to depend on our parents to hear stories of our physical birth, we depend on Jesus to explain spiritual birth.
3. Read John 3:16 and ask, “Why do you think some people have trouble accepting such a simple concepts?
4. Say: Just as our parents often are the one’s that explain “the facts of life” to us, Jesus told Nicodemus “the spiritual facts of life in John 3:16
a. Read: Have a volunteer read John 3:16
b. Ask a volunteer: As simply as you can use John 3:16 to explain John 3:16 to the rest of the group. Be sure they cover the following facts:
1. God loves you.
2. Jesus had to die for your sins
3. You must put your faith in Him
4. You will receive life with God forever
Application: This section encourages the group members share the story of their own spiritual birth and practice telling the Gospel with others by:
1. Explaining the 15 second testimony sharing: 2 things about your life before Jesus, When you met Jesus and two things about your life after you met Jesus. Have group members practice their 15 second testimony.
2. Sharing the 3 circles with the group and then allowing the group to take turns sharing the 3 circles with each other.
3. Ask group members to name someone they can share the Gospel with this next week
4. Close in prayer by commissioning the group to share the story of Jesus and Nicodemus and the Gospel with someone this week.
5. Ask: Do you think God want to reveal Himself to you? Why?
6. List ways you could improve your odds of seeing Jesus as work in your life in the coming week?
7. Ask: Who is someone you could share this story with this week. Are there people you could start a zoom group with this week:
8. Close in prayer by asking God to reveal to us this week.
9. Remind the group about when and what time you will be holding your next discovery Zoom group.