Sunday Nov. 27 at 11:15 a.m. – Advent Through the Eyes Session 1 The Prophets introduce us to waiting and to preparing for the Messiah, our work for these four weeks of Advent. This is not a simple task as our culture (both the church and the community) pushes us to prepare in bigger ways each year, even though the preparation often takes us away from the waiting and preparing for the Messiah. So look at your calendar now and set aside time to experience Advent differently this year by meeting figures prominent in the lectionary readings. During these weeks, the people of the Advent texts will guide us on our way to the coming of the Messiah. Pastor Cheryl will lead this class discussion in the Lange Room.
Gluttony – can be a deadly sin in the most literal way. Although most often referred to in the Bible as excessive eating and drinking, the sin of gluttony is not restricted to food. Gluttony is similar to greed, but whereas greed is a proactive act of accumulating possessions, gluttony is the failure to exercise self-control over impulses. Being excessively overweight can be, but is not necessarily, a symptom of gluttony. Alcoholism is also a symptom of gluttony, as are the many examples we read about where people have not exercised self-control over their impulses. Paul compares the discipline of an athlete to the discipline we should have as Christians. Yet, in today’s world, simply being temperate in one’s eating and drinking is not enough. Our choice of foods can have significant ethical implications, and even the way in which we distribute food to hungry people is laden with moral dilemmas. Several movies and books have been made recently that call into question the ethics of our current food system. Many consider the Farm Bill to be immoral. The United States is in a brutal battle with Canada and Europe over the proper way of distributing world food aid. Come learn about some of the ethical implications of what you will eat for lunch today. Learn why the US claim that it is the most generous country in the world is hotly disputed by many of our closest allies. All of these issues relate in one way or another to the sin of gluttony, either individually or collectively. This class could forever change the way you look at food – so come if you dare!
The New Testament Studies Class is disbanding and we want to thank Pam Postle for her leadership in this class this fall. We hope you will attend our one adult Sunday Studies class which will now meet in the Lange Room.
Greed – another of the seven deadly sins, is considered among the worst of sins because it is so easily cloaked in virtue. That greed is so obvious and obviously wrong does not mean that we have it under control. For example, many Christians claim that their wealth is a blessing from God, and do not attribute its accumulation to greed. Americans consume resources at a much higher rate than others on the planet. If everyone consumed at that rate, the world could not sustain its population. Yet this pattern of consumption is rarely considered a symptom of greed. Although churches talk about greed in a general way, it rarely calls for one to personally examine finances and purchases. We will discuss the definition of greed, what the Bible says about greed, how our country got into such a financial mess, and what the recent “Occupy Wall Street” movement says about our culture. This discussion will be led by Marvin Pritts and will meet in the Lange Room.