Monday, June 25, 2012

Catechisms and Families

No, it wasn't because of the cover...
I mentioned in a previous post that we were trying to utilize a catechism with our family to teach theology to our children, and ourselves for that matter. We recently started meeting with a few other families on a weekly basis to study and worship together. We all have young kids, so we're using a kids version of the Westminster Shorter Catechism, or WSC for short. It's based on the Catechism for Young Children, published by Great Commission Publications.

Part of the reason we chose the WSC as a basis was because of the huge volume of resources that have been written to help explain and expand upon the catechism (two of which are mentioned below). There are other great catechisms that could have been used (such as the Heidelberg), but this gives families more options for continuing to learn and grow throughout the week.

This week we met and discussed questions 64 through 66, which are as follows:

64. Q: How long ago did Christ die?
      A: About two thousand years ago.

65. Q: How were sinners saved before Christ came?
      A: By believing in the promised Messiah.

66. Q: Before Christ came, how did believers show their faith?
      A: By offering the sacrifices God required.

We focused primarily on question 65, leaving the others for families to emphasize/discuss throughout the week.

We also choose songs to sing together that connect with these theological points, and lean heavily on songs already produced by Seeds Family worship

Here's some follow up information sent to the group to help with continuing to revisit the topics throughout the week:

Week of June 24th.
This week we covered questions 64-66, which primarily deal with how people that lived before Jesus were saved. Great topic to think about that applies directly to us today for one basic reason: believers today are saved the same way, by faith in Christ. The faith of figures in the Old Testament was in the Christ to come. Our faith is in the Christ who has come and will come again.
Our verse of the week is II Corinthians 5:7, and it’s a short one, “We walk by faith and not by sight.” We trust that God’s promises are true, even if we don’t know exactly how every single thing will turn out.  Which also reminds me of a verse you might have your family look at this week. You could simply ask the question, “What is faith?” Then turn to Hebrews 11.1, which defines faith for us: “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” It is a conviction that God’s promises are true, an assurance that He can be trusted.
Thus a simple statement to explore and emphasize this week: God keeps his promises.
Also note that if you have the book Big Truths for Little Kids, these questions occur in chapter 16, page 68.
And in the book Small Talk on Big Questions, you can find stories for these questions starting on page 141.

Our songs this week started with the crowd favorite, "Jesus loves me." We also covered two songs that were scripture memory songs from previous verses of the week.
The first was based on the first and second commandments, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart...", found in Matthew 22:36-40 and Mark 12:29-31.
The other song was last weeks "verse of the week": Jeremiah 33:3 “Call to me and I will answer you...” The verse reminds us that even though we are not able to repent on our own strength, we can call upon the Holy Spirit who gives us the ability to trust and believe, and he will answer (see also John 6:37)
You can download these songs from itunes. They are produced by “Seeds Family Worship.” Links are below:
         Love the Lord your God
         Call to me

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