Dietrich Bonhoeffer

What can we learn from his life?

Read & Reflect: Read Mark 8:31-38.
Bonhoeffer was a German pastor and theologian, who wrote, spoke and acted against the evil of the Nazi regime.
Bonhoeffer was executed by Nazis in 1945, having been put in a concentration camp. He believed strongly that we should imitate Christ and that the church must at all times be involved in opposing evil, even when this might prove so very costly.

Bonhoeffer wrote: “Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living and incarnate.”. He wrote and talked about suffering as we really follow Jesus – and Bonhoeffer did this to the extent of being killed as he followed Christ.

Respond: Hateful politics have a louder voice in our world today. What are we, as Christians, going to do about this?

Corrie Ten Boom

What can we learn from her life?

Read & Reflect:
Isaiah 58 & Joshua 2 Corrie Ten Boom was a Christian from the Netherlands who, with her family, hid many Jewish people in the Second World War and enabled some to escape to freedom. Consequently, she was sent to a concentration camp by the Nazis.

Respond:
Corrie Ten Boom was inspired through her Christian faith to take massive risks for people who were hated by many. She showed love in action. In our daily lives we hopefully do not face such big risks…but are there things we
can do this week to help other people, that at the very least cost us something?

Great Cloud of Witnesses:

Shiprah & Puah What can we learn from their lives?

Read & Reflect: Exodus 1

Respond: At the beginning of the book of Exodus, the Bible tells us that the ruler of Egypt decrees that all Hebrew boys must be killed by the midwife delivering the baby. Two such midwives are named, Shiprah and Puah. They take a stand and refuse to do this. “But the midwives feared God; they did not do as the king of Egypt commanded them, but they let the boys live.” (1:17)

Faced with evil, what do we do? How do we support what is right? How do we stand up for God’s way?

Great Cloud of Witnesses – Esau. What can we learn from his life?

Read & Reflect: Genesis ch.25:19-34, ch.27, ch.33:1-17 and you might want to watch this children’s video! https://youtu.be/hGs1WfRKIoM

Poor Esau: firstborn who forsakes his inheritance; outwitted and outraged at the injustice of his situation.

Respond: Esau makes some bad decisions but is also seriously a victim. He has a big grievance against his brother. But what an amazing reconciliation! (33:4) Who have we been hurt by? Can we be inspired by Esau’s story to do God’s work through being reconciled to those with whom we have fallen out?

Noah. What can we learn from his life?

Read & Reflect: Genesis 6-9. The story of Noah is so well known. Where can we go with it to find something fresh? Maybe we can focus on “faithfulness”? God is so true to Noah and Noah remains loyal to his God throughout. Maybe we can ask questions to get inside the story? Why did God cause the flood? What was Noah’s response? Should we judge Noah when he becomes drunk? Is the judgment laid upon Ham a harsh one?

Respond: “Noah found favour in the sight of the Lord”- is that true of us? Noah is obedient to the commands of God (6: 14- 7:5) – are there ways in which we need to be more true to what God requires from us?