I’m going to experiment with posting some of my Sunday School lessons; not because I think I can do better than Jim does, but because he asked me to post them!
These are the notes that I teach from, not a handout for the class, so it may seem a little disjointed. Also, I generally pick a short passage and go over it with the class in depth; this week, I will do Enos 1:1-12, and not much else.
The Prayer of Enos: A Blueprint
Introduction: imagine that you get a new electronic toy (Tivo, Palm Pilot, etc.). You use it and think, ‘how did I ever survive without it?’ Only months later do you discover that it has a few features that you had never even imagined! Prayer is like this: we all know how to operate the basic machinery, but there are ‘special features’ that we haven’t even imagined. As we study Enos, think about some of the features that he discovered and how those features might enrich your prayer life.
v1: “nurture and admonition” and parenting
–‘nurture': that which nourishes and encourages growth
–‘admonition': ‘gentle reproof’, instruction, counsel, caution
–Read Ephesians 6:4. Why is the opposite of nurture and admonition wrath and what would ‘nurture and admonition’ look like in a family?
v2: Ask: What does Enos do to draw you into this verse?
–point: this is very personal
Ask: Why’ wrestle’? What can you learn from this word choice?
v3: Ask: What truths do you glean from verse 3?
–he was going about his ‘daily work’
–his father had taught him
–he remembered learning of joy and life, not negatives
–Enos was pondering
–he wasn’t ready until now
v4 As we read, notice the verbs. What do you learn about prayer?
On the continuum of Really Lame Prayers to Really Powerful Prayers, what would be some of the characteristics that distinguish prayers on one end from those on the other?
v5 Why didn’t the voice come right away?
v6 Is guilt a good thing or a bad thing?
v7 Ask: Does this verse surprise you? What do you learn from this verse about the kinds of questions that we should ask God?
Point: You don’t need complete knowledge to proceed.
v8 “thy faith hath made thee whole” three times in the NT:
–Mark 5:34 (bleeding woman)
–Mark 10:52 (blind man received sight)
–Luke 17:19 (thankful leper of ten cleansed)
Ask: What do these people have in common and what should we learn from them?
v9 Notice pattern emerging: v2 (self), v9 (brethren), v11 (enemies–but notice that they are ‘my brethren the Lamanites’), v15 (future people)
Ask: What does showing love for your enemies mean in the context of your life?
v10 “came into my mind”
Ask: How is revelation received? (If time, read 1 Kings 19:11-13).
v11 Another pattern: guilt/pondering (v2), faith makes whole (v8), faith begins to be unshaken (v11).
Point out: direction is more important than speed.
v12 Ask: How would you define ‘labored’ in this context?