1. 7 Essentials of an Adult Bible Class

    August 26, 2016 by Paul Chappell

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    I believe the key reason for adult Bible classes in the local church is the organization to fulfill the purposes of the church. Dr. Lee Roberson used to say, “The Sunday school is the church organized to fulfill the purpose of the church.”

    Whether you call it Sunday School, Adult Bible Fellowships, Connection Groups, or something else, it is vital that you have clearly defined purposes and processes for this vital area of church ministry.

    At Lancaster Baptist Church, we now have over fifty adult Bible classes, and we work to make sure each class includes these essentials: (more…)


  2. 5 Questions to Evaluate the Effectiveness of Your Gospel Witness

    August 22, 2016 by Paul Chappell

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    We cannot always measure effectiveness by visible fruit. Some of my favorite testimonies of salvation are of people who trusted Christ after repeated witnessing attempts by multiple people.

    Even the Apostle Paul experienced times when he witnessed and the fruit wasn’t immediate.

    I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.—1 Corinthians 3:6

    So if we try to measure the effectiveness of our witness on fruit alone, we may miscalculate. Perhaps during a season when we are diligently sowing seed, we won’t see fruit. On the other hand, we may be in a season when we are reaping another man’s labor and are seeing great fruit although our own witness may or may not be effective.

    The bottom line is that God grades on faithfulness, not evident fruitfulness.

    So how do we measure faithfulness? Is it simply by our heart to continue? Is it because we are open to sharing the gospel if the opportunity arises? (more…)


  3. How a Young Boy Made a Difference for Religious Freedom

    August 17, 2016 by Paul Chappell

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    If you saw the news headlines back in early June regarding the Zavala family and the Desert Rose Elementary School, you’ll remember why we were concerned about the threat of religious freedom being taken from a seven-year-old boy.

    In short, a young boy in our local Palmdale school district was told that he could not give out cards with Scripture verses to classmates who were requesting them during his lunchtime.

    It all started when the boy’s mother, Christina Zavala, included an encouraging note and verse in his lunch each day. As this first-grader read his notes to his friends, they began looking forward to the note and verse each day. This led to his mother making extra copies for him to give to his friends…which in turn led to a complaint and to the school dispatching an officer to the home to tell the family to stop. (more…)


  4. 6 Ways Teachers Prepare for a Life-Changing Year

    August 15, 2016 by Paul Chappell

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    I think of teachers much like I do of nurses—heroes. Like nursing, teaching is an unsung job that requires tremendous amounts of personal investment in other people’s lives. And, also like nursing, teaching has the potential to make a tremendous difference as well.

    Teachers have a unique ability to influence moldable lives. I still remember the names of and specific lessons from many of my teachers, and I’m guessing you do as well.

    So, as a new school year begins, how can you as a teacher—in any teaching setting—use your influence to effect life change in your students? (more…)


  5. What Do Pastors Do All Week?

    August 9, 2016 by Paul Chappell

     

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    I think one of the most common misconceptions of those who have not served as a senior pastor is that a pastor’s work is only the work of preaching. If you look at it that way, it would seem the pastor hardly works at all—perhaps for an hour two or three times each week.

    Yet, when Paul described the “office of a bishop” (pastor), he specifically called it “work.”

    This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work.—1 Timothy 3:1

    It was a joy a few months back to preach the ordination for our youngest son, Matthew, who will be planting Rock Hill Baptist Church in Fontana, California, in a few months. I chose 1 Timothy 3:1 as my text, and in the message, I noted four aspects of the work ministry.

    If you have ever wondered what your pastor does all week, here it is. And if, as a pastor, you’ve ever wondered what aspects of your job you should focus on, here are four core responsibilities. (more…)