Serpent Scroll used for children's story

Rochelle, a Mum who reads the scroll books to her kids did something awesome recently. Have a read!

"I took a children's story and used, from the Serpent Scroll, the story of Adam and Eve and then told the children they could get this book out of the library to read more.
It's nice to get some feedback that even the really young children were listening with rapt attention as I told/read the story - so hopefully the 4 copies at the library will be taken out by heaps of children from the church and community!"

When I asked her if I could post this on my blog, she went on to say:

"No probs. I'd be really happy for you to do so. My daughter, Paris, who you may remember from when she was a baby at camp, (now almost 8) has loved your books so much, we have read 2 with one to go and she just can't wait to read each chapter, so they are books that HAVE to be shared with our community too!!"


How are you using the Serpent Scroll, the Lamb Scroll, and the Kingdom Scroll to bless the children in your world?

Stump Pastor Dave

In the JETS shed at Tassie bigcamp the kids put questions in a box and I answered them during the meeting. I was so impressed with the questions! They made me laugh, love, ponder and wonder. Here they are… (I'll leave you to ponder the answers!)

General Questions:
If Giants aren’t real, why are they in the Bible?
What was Jesus’ Mum’s Mum’s name? What was Jesus’ Dad’s Dad’s Name?
Why can’t pigs fly?
What was in between the angels on the Ark of the Covenant?
If God can do anything then why isn’t the future predestined? Because if it is then God cant change it – He can’t do anything.
If you had to choose, why did the chicken cross the road?
If Jesus, God the Father and the Holy Spirit are three in one then why couldn’t God the Father die on the cross?
How did words get to be called what they are?
When we die and go to heaven and then to the new earth, when we die and go to heaven will that happen all over again?
Why did God make animals that can kill you?
When we go to heaven and come back to earth what age would we be?
Can we have babies in Heaven?
God wants us to be happy, right? The why do things happen that can make us extremely sad?
Who was Noah’s father and mother?
How long did it take to recite the Torah?
Where did God come from?
It is said, Jesus sweated blood. Is that scientifically true?
Explain the prophecies of Daniel and Revelation.
Please sing ‘There’s no one like Jesus’ with all the actions.
If we have the freedom of choose then how can God see the future? Because if He knows the outcome before we make the decision we don’t really choose.
What are the three wise man’s names and what are their backgrounds?

Personal Questions:
Why did you become a pastor?
What is your favourite girls name in the Bible?
Are you going to come to big camp again next year?
If you did not write books what would you be doing in your life?
Why do you like watermelon?
Will you miss us?
What has been your favourite thing at camp?
What is your favourite colour?

Jan 14: 4H-SS Teachers

Lesson Title: Glimpses of God – In the Beginning
Lesson Date: January 14

Sabbath School teacher’s 4H questions
Good questions are worth their weight in gold. Questions are most useful when they probe the edges of our knowledge base or comfort zone. Here are some questions to get you thinking beyond the box as you prepare to teach this Sabbath’s lesson to your class.

Head
building a foundation of knowledge

1. Sunday’s lesson mentions Ps 14:1 “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God.’” This verse implies there were atheists in David’s day and that he thought the idea was foolishness. What might it have been like to be an atheist in a world rampant with belief in gods of all shapes and sizes? How might the plight of the atheist in David’s day have been similar to that of the monotheist?

2. When is recreation re-creation? Often holidays leave us more tired than revived. What times of recreation truly re-create you — physically, spiritually, emotionally?

Heart
learning to love what God loves

1. Monday’s Lesson explores Job 38:4-7. This passage considers the planning and preparation that went into creation and the joy this brought the angels. Continue reading verses 8-11. How do tsunami’s show sin’s effect on Creation? How must they affect the heart of God?

2. How is Sabbath a day of recreation helping you relax and unwind?
How is Sabbath a day of re-creation helping you heal and renew?

Hands
choosing to act as God desires

1. The second half of Monday’s lesson compares God’s love to a mother bird preparing a nest and teaching the babies to fly. God prepared a nest for Adam and Eve and (similarly to most birds) they were ejected from it. For many birds, there are no gentle flying lessons repeated over time. It’s a jump or a push and a new life – of flight.

How do these two examples (Eden’s exit and leaving the nest) reflect your reality? Have there been times when you jumped or were pushed into the next phase of life? What did this act of “forced re-creation” create in you? Have there been times when you were gently shaped over time? Which do you prefer?
Consider times when you were involved in shaping other people – Have you shaped through both gentle moulding and tough love? How do these acts of re-creation of life reveal our connection to and reflection of God?

2. What Sabbath habit could you maintain that would re-create (renew) you personally each week?
What Sabbath tradition could you practice that would re-create (renew) your family each week?

Horizon
exploring the Kingdom beyond my walls

1. Sunday’s lesson explains the void/filled paradigm of creation week. Day 1 to 3 created environments, which were filled on day 4-6 (1/4, 2/5, 3/6). This ordering of space and then filling of it is also used by liberal Christians (who believe in evolution) to show that God is a God of order – gradually preparing ahead of time what he was planning long in the future. How could you use this common ground to develop a friendship with a liberal Christian? How could the Sabbath be a day of celebration to both ways of thinking?

2. In the new-Earth what re-creation (creation made new) are you most looking forward to? Why?
In the new-Earth what recreation (enjoyable moment or event) are you most looking forward to? Why?

2012 SS-Challenge
As your conference Sabbath School Director, it is my SS-Challenge to your Sabbath School to start a midweek small group meeting. To assist in this endeavour, I have created a study guide for your use. This study guide explores the 28 core teachings of the Seventh-day Adventist Church using the 4H model. It is open, inclusive, discussion oriented and non-judgemental. People of all ages and spiritual levels will enjoy your “28 Stories Small Group.”

The 4H approach to Bible study was developed while preparing the 28 Stories small group guide/journal. Here is an excerpt from Study 15 – “Very Good”.

Jesus extended a hand to Adam and helped him to his feet. Then draping His arm across the shoulders of His new creation, the two of them looked out over the glorious Garden of Eden. The sun shone full from behind them causing the river and everything beyond to shimmer and shine in it’s reflected brilliance.

The Creator spoke, turning to place His free hand on the man’s chest, “Adam, you are but shadow and breath,” and then with a sweeping gesture taking in all that was before them, He finished, “And yet, for you the universe was made!”

Jesus and Adam walked through the Garden. Jesus explained to Adam the amazing things that had taken place in the last six days. The entire world around them had taken shape—light, land, sea, sun, moon, rivers, trees, day and night.

Then Jesus said, “But today is special, Adam! Today I created and named you.”

“And I thank you,” Adam said. “I am greatly honoured to live in your paradise and care for your Creation.”

“And I am honoured to have you as my servant,” Jesus answered. “Serve me faithfully—with all your heart, all your mind and all your soul—and you will be fulfilled and happy.”

The 28 Stories Study Guide is available from the Adventist Book Centre.

Jan 7: 4H-SS Teachers

Lesson Title: Glimpses of God – The Triune God
Lesson Date: January 7, 2012

Sabbath School teacher’s 4H preparation
Good questions are worth their weight in gold. Questions are most useful when they probe the edges of our knowledge base or comfort zone. Here are some questions to get you thinking beyond the box as you prepare to teach this Sabbath’s lesson to your class. This is not meant to be a discussion guide but a thought prompter for you, the teacher, so your lesson time will be creative and thought provoking.

Head
building a foundation of knowledge

1. The “prove-it” hijacker: One of your Sabbath School regulars comes prepared with every bit of paper and websites they could dredge up to prove that the SS topic is wrong. (This week, their argument would be that the Trinity is not Biblical.) What will you do with their demands for proof that threaten to derail your Sabbath School lesson?

a. Come prepared with your own pile of verses and quotes, ready for the hijack attempt. (This shows you are willing and ready to sacrifice Sabbath School class time for this discussion.)

b. Silence the hijacker with a rebuke or have them physically removed. (This shows you do not value the topic or the person.)

c. Let them speak and then move on. (This is a common way of dealing with over-talkative or “pet (topic) lovers” that come to Sabbath School. We’ve all done this, but has this approach ever helped your lesson develop in the direction you planned?)

Suggestion: As a proactive Sabbath School Superintendent, in the prelims (or as a class leader, at the start of the discussion) explain the lesson has been prepared to explore the current Seventh-day Adventist understanding of scripture on the topic of the day. Establish that other people believe differently and are free to do so. Ask that respect be given to the teacher and the prepared topic.
If they persist, suggest the hijacker organise a discussion time with the pastor and interested participants on the topic they have prepared. (This honours their right to be heard and invites them to do the same.)

2. You don’t need to wait for a Sabbath School Hijacker to discover the conundrum of the Trinity. The Bible itself – in both old and new testaments talks about God as both singular and plural. In Genesis 1:26-27 God creates humanity in “our image” and then in the Shema (Deuteronomy 6:4) God says “The Lord is One.”

a. What is your favourite way to explain this conundrum?

b. With a story? (Christian minister and comedian Mike Warnke says cherry pie filling, when made right, is like the Trinity. The filling stays liquid, flowing throughout the pie. You can therefore cut a cherry pie into three distinct slices, but underneath the surface there's only one united area of filling.)

c. A science experiment? (The triple point cell where ice, water, vapour all exist in one container).

d. Do you have another way of explaining it?

3. Which Biblical depiction of God are you most and least comfortable with? A Father? A breath? Marriage? A Voice? A Hen? A Rock? A Dove? Jesus? The Holy Spirit? (Why?)

Heart
learning to love what God loves

1. In Exodus 3:13-15 why doesn’t God just answer with a name? (Yahweh, Elshadai, etc) – Why the history lesson? God ties His name to a story. Why is it important to have a story attached to God’s Name? How do we attach stories to our name and the names of those around us? Why is this important?

2. After the Shema in Deuteronomy 6:4, why did God tell His people to tell their children about God and His presence in everyday life? What do families have to do with the Shema?

3. In Monday’s lesson a list of verses is given showing moments when Jesus was worshiped.

a. Compare and contrast the stories of worship in these verses with your experiences of worship. How does this challenge you?

b. When have you had a Glimpse of God and been compelled to worship in the way these people were?

Hands
choosing to act as God desires

1. How can we give the world around us glimpses of God by putting the Triune nature of God into action?

a. How will I be the hands of the Father, Life-Giver and Merciful Sustainer, to the world around me?

b. How will I be the hands of Jesus, Creator and reCreator, to the world around me?

c. How will I be the hands of the Holy Spirit, Comforter and Guide, to the world around me?

2. The lesson dedicates an entire day (Thursday) to the prayer of Jesus for his followers (John 17!). Jesus’ main desire is for His people to be One as He is One with the Father. How are we doing at being one? Are we “as tight as the trinity” or do we have a way to go?

a. How healthy are our relationships with others in our local church?

b. What personal character development is needed?

c. What community commitment is needed?

d. What must be put aside?

e. Why is the oneness of the Trinity so important?

f. Why is the oneness of believers so important to Jesus?

Horizon
exploring the Kingdom beyond our walls

1. From the Lesson: “Some early Adventists struggled with the doctrine of the Trinity. Today, the church has taken a firm stand on the doctrine.”

a. There are numerous anti-Trinitarians in Australian Adventist churches. How can we minister to these people without excluding them or encouraging their views?

2. It is part of the human condition to want to understand and explain the nature of the Divine. In the Bible, God is explained with metaphors, concepts and names. Why is this desire to understand God so prevalent?

a. Muslims are vehement monotheist. Yet they have the 99 names for God to help them explain God’s unfathomable nature.

b. Hindu’s have one God and a Trinity (Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva), which each represent aspects of their singular Supreme God. All of the many other Hindu gods are similarly representative of aspects of the Supreme God. Hinduism is monotheistic polytheism!

3. What other terms, stories and characters in the Bible reveal the nature of God to you?

2012 SS-Challenge
As your conference Sabbath School Director, it is my SS-Challenge to your Sabbath School to start a midweek small group meeting. To assist in this endeavour, I have created a study guide for your use. This study guide explores the 28 core teachings of the Seventh-day Adventist Church using the 4H model. It is open, inclusive, discussion oriented and non-judgemental. People of all ages and spiritual levels will enjoy your “28 Stories Small Group.”

The 4H approach to Bible study was developed while preparing the 28 Stories small group guide/journal. Here is an excerpt from the introduction.

Far to frequently, faith is reduced to “I believe” and belief is reduced an intellectual nod of the head. Faith is so much more. True faith is beyond belief! Beyond the head faith, which we Adventist are good at, there is so much more. These studies will take you on a faith journey in which you will explore the head, heart, hands and horizons of your faith story.

Each of the 28 studies in this journal follows the pattern of:

Bible Story – Rewritten to connect you to the Biblical character and to direct your thoughts toward a particular aspect of the doctrine in consideration.

My Reflection – Finding yourself in the Biblical narrative.

My Story – Finding the principles of the Biblical narrative in your experience.

My Assurance – Strengthening your faith by encouraging your heart.

My Commitment – Challenging your faith by considering what you can become.

My Outlook – Expanding your horizon of your God, your world or yourself.

My Response – Acknowledging the doctrine and considering it’s importance.

The 28 Stories Study Guide is available from the Adventist Book Centre.

Dave Edgren ~ Story: Teller, Author, Trainer ~

BOOK DAVE NOW! Dave Edgren is passionate about creating a values-based storytelling culture. In his engaging and often hilarious way,...