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It’s Been a Good Year.

May 22, 2014

1dMy final class of students will be taking their Bible  New Testament exam this morning.  They’ll be listing the themes to all of the books of the New Testament, filing in a map of Israel, telling me about Paul’s letters to the Corinthians, and other important areas of study from this past semester.  By noontime the rooms will be cleared and I will be shuffling around in a quiet atmosphere, cleaning the last items away and preparing to go home for the summer.

For a teacher, clearing your room and packing your car on the last day of school is like taking down the Christmas tree in January.  You want to move on, but there’s a bit of melancholy over the memories that were made.

It has been a good year.

The last part of my exam was in asking the students to tell the most important thing they learned this year.  Let the students themselves tell you:

“…I learned that when you ask forgiveness, Jesus casts your sins away, and that you won’t be judged for it on Judgment Day because Jesus has forgotten about it. 1 John 1:9.  Knowing that Jesus forgives and forgets gives me great comfort.” – Brenda

“I loved learning about Revelation, its symbolism and in-depth meanings… I also loved to learn about the peace of God in Philippians 4:7 and how that can help in a time of grieving…” – Elizabeth

“Learning more about how to defend myself against atheists is probably the biggest…”  – Angie

“I think I liked learning about the prophecies best, how Jesus fulfilled the Old Testament predictions, like Micah 5;2 and Zechariah 9:9.  I also enjoyed the study on Heaven.” – Mike

“The most important thing for me was learning about Heaven, in Revelation 21,  how it was more than just a street of gold and some fruit trees…”   – Bill

“I’m starting to have a Bible quiet time reading again.  Overall, this study of the Bible has really changed me…” – Tonya

“I have learned that the world outside of my schooling will be a challenge – some will try to destroy my faith and others will have questions about my beliefs.  Thanks to our study in Jude and Colossians I now know enough to defend my faith and give answers.”  – Nate

“I love the way Revelation describes Heaven – how there is no pain, sickness or suffering.  It’s so promising to me; I am excited to see it for myself and be with others for all eternity.  This gives me a great hope, this promise of how Heaven will make us forget about all the trials on earth…”  – Sharon

“The study of Philippians 4:7 helped me get through the many trials my family and I faced this year…”  – Stephanie

“I think of all the Biblical truths we learned this year, our study in Philemon on forgiveness was most important to me, because I find it hard to forgive.  When I realized how much Christ forgave me, I started to see how important it was for me to learn to forgive…” – Anna

And on and on.  Students talking about new insight into the miracles of Christ. The Nativity’s miracles.  The suffering of Peter.  The jailing of Paul.  The collapse of the Pharisee’s system of religion.  The brutal honesty of James and the fighting words of Jude.  The failure of the Corinthian church and their changes.  The demons’ challenges and God’s victories.  And especially Christ’s Armageddon triumph which leads us into a whole new life.

I think it was summed up best when a young man once told me, “It’s getting to know the Bible, and the Jesus in the Bible.  The Bible was what I found most important.   Dr. Zockoll, all you had to do is just point out the Bible and show us the truths – it was that easy.  Uh, no offense to you.”

None taken.

This is the raw, real power of the New Testament.

It’s Scriptural knowledge that is foremost here.  It’s learning that Jesus is more than a cliché.  He’s the Savior.  He’s the King.  He’s God Himself.

I don’t want to stand in the way of that reality.

7 For none of us lives to himself alone and none of us dies to himself alone. 8 If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.  Romans 14:7-9

Yes, indeed, it’s been a good year.

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  1. How wonderfully rewarding that must be … reaching not just into minds but hearts! Brilliant! The power of God’s word is amazing 🙂 God bless!

    • Thank you, Christine. Yes, it is rewarding. I finish the day with an excitement that if even just one Bible truth hits home to a student, it could change his or her life. Christ can move within the classroom!

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