828 King's Highway, Suffolk VA 23432

757 255-4168 stjohns1755@verizon.net Worship Service: Sundays at 10:30am
Welcome to St. John's community. We are honored to serve Christ, and to open our doors to all. Please feel free to join us for worship. St. John's can trace its history to the founding of Jamestown. The parish is over 350 years old, and the church building itself has stood for 2 and a half centuries. St. John's saw the American Revolution and served as a camp ground for troops during the Civil War. Through it all, St. John's has been a place of worship and a home for those seeking communion with Christ. St. John's has a rich and abiding history. Today, it is as it was... a place to find and be found by Christ.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Christian Formation for Sunday April 21 - Acts 9:32-43; Peter in Lydda and Joppa

April 21, 2013 – 4 Easter
Acts 9:32-43
Peter in Lydda and Joppa
Background: The Acts of the Apostles is a unique book in the New Testament. This book is the companion to the Gospel of Luke and provides much of the history of the early church. Acts presents much of the theology of the Apostles and Disciples in the first century as the Christian Cult was gaining stature. This section describes the spread of the faith outside Jerusalem.
Theme: This section describes the spread of Christianity from Jerusalem in preparation for the mission to the Gentiles. Peter carries on Jesus’ ministry of healing and restoration. This is one of the first indicators of the prominence of women in the growing Faith.
Questions to Ponder:
* Please read Acts 9:32-35 in addition to the assigned reading. Briefly describe the setting for this passage.
* Where are Joppa and Lydda located? Why might those places be important in the life of the Jews?
* What strikes you in the description of both events: Aeneas’ healing and Tabitha’s being raised from the dead?
* Scholars state that the naming of a woman as a disciple (the feminine form of the word disciple is used for Tabitha) only appears in this passage in all the New Testament. What do you think is the significance of that fact?
* What faith do you think Aeneas and Tabitha are? How might their faith be significant to the spread of Christianity?
* Why might both of Tabitha’s names, Hebrew and Greek, be given in the text?
* There are some similarities between this account of Peter and the healings of both Elijah and Jesus. What do you think this is intended to signify?
* What do you think the function of the widows is? Why is the widows’ wailing important to the people of that time? Why do you think the women were showing the clothes and tunics Tabitha made?
* Why might it have been significant enough to the writer to comment that Peter offered his hand to help Tabitha up once she was raised from the dead?
* What do you think about the fact that “many believed in the Lord [Jesus]” after Peter’s miracle? Do you think the miracle was important to the growth of the body of the Faithful?
* What is the good news for the first and second century Christians?
* How do we capture the intent of this story of good news and share it today?
* What is our mission and “course correction” based on this passage?

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