Weekly Study Notes for the Sunday Mass

Study these notes before you go to the Sunday Mass so that you are best prepared to understand the readings given during that particular day.

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a broad road with a sign overhead reading "Christians" and then with a small turn off to the right reading "for christ"

Sunday Mass Study Notes for 10-24-2021

Sunday Mass Study Notes for 10-24-2021 1200 700 Christians for Christ Ministries

Welcome back to the Sunday Mass notes. This week we open with a message of hope from the Prophet Jeremiah. The application is that although we as believers sin, God will ultimately fulfill all of His promises to us, including restoration and life with Him in a perfect kingdom. In the second reading from Hebrews, we examine Jesus’ intercession for us as our eternal High Priest. We conclude the lesson with Mark’s story about Jesus’ healing of a blind man named Bartimaeus.

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a broad road with a sign overhead reading "Christians" and then with a small turn off to the right reading "for christ"

Sunday Mass Study Notes for 10-17-2021

Sunday Mass Study Notes for 10-17-2021 1200 700 Christians for Christ Ministries

Welcome back to the Sunday Mass notes. This week, Marla shares by opening with Isaiah 53: 10-11, which is part of a chapter that depicts in graphic detail Jesus’ suffering and death for our sin.  Then she turns to a passage in Hebrews 4:14-16 that shows how Jesus has faced the same temptations we face and as a result, is not only sympathetic to us in our struggles but can give us victory over them. Finally, she concludes with the Gospel of St. Mark 10: 35-45 where Jesus tells us the key to greatness is being a servant of all.

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a broad road with a sign overhead reading "Christians" and then with a small turn off to the right reading "for christ"

Sunday Mass Study Notes for 10-10-2021

Sunday Mass Study Notes for 10-10-2021 1200 700 Jim Hill

Welcome back to the Sunday Mass notes. I remember the time when I came home from the office and I saw an ambulance in my neighbor’s driveway. Harvey was a man that had retired from the assembly line at General Motors. He was a rough-around-the-edges kind of guy, not someone that you would find going to church each Sunday although his wife did regularly attend. Harvey had struggled with sepsis and had been very close to dying. I had wondered about his spiritual beliefs, and I was sad that I had never shared with him the faith that I had in Jesus Christ. He pulled through this episode, but had horrible ongoing issues, including kidney failure and the need for dialysis three times a week. After Harvey returned home, I finally got up the courage to send him a letter explaining the facts of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ. Even though I could not break through to him face to face, I figured that he would at least read the letter. I explained that his continuing life was evidence of a miracle from God. Later I moved to a far-away state, but I kept in frequent touch with Harvey by cell phone. I never saw any signs of spiritual life in him, but I maintained the relationship, and we developed a closer relationship than we had had when he was living across the street.

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a broad road with a sign overhead reading "Christians" and then with a small turn off to the right reading "for christ"

Sunday Mass Study Notes for 10-03-2021

Sunday Mass Study Notes for 10-03-2021 1200 700 Christians for Christ Ministries

Welcome back to the Sunday Mass notes. This week we open this week with a reading from Genesis, the first and foundation Book of the Bible. This is one of the Books that I read once a year, along with the two other Books that I consider foundational for any student of the Bible. The other two that I read (and sometimes the entire Book in one sitting) are the Gospel of John and the Book of Acts. When I speak with new believers, I frequently tell them to proceed in the following order. Begin with Genesis, then with John, and finally conclude with Acts. In this way, the reader picks up many very important names and biblical constructs in a very short time. In addition, when reading in this order a person will quickly recognize the connections between the Old and New Testaments. This week as we begin with a reading from Genesis, we will see how Jesus connected this first Book of the Bible to His contemporary teaching on divorce as well as the Mosaic Law which His nemesis the Pharisees were trying to twist for their own advantage. We will also study in the second reading how the Old Testament proves that Jesus is the Christ as we look at the Book of Hebrews. The author of Hebrews was a star student of the Old Testament and understood extremely well the themes and theology of the Old Testament and how it connected with the New as revealed through the Person of Jesus Christ

Introduction to the First Reading:

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a broad road with a sign overhead reading "Christians" and then with a small turn off to the right reading "for christ"

Sunday Mass Study Notes for 09-26-2021

Sunday Mass Study Notes for 09-26-2021 1200 700 Christians for Christ Ministries

Welcome back to the Sunday Mass notes. Over the years, I began to keep in my computer a folder in which I filed obituaries and death notices. As I am getting a bit “long in the tooth” myself, this folder has been growing larger and larger. From time to time, I look through this folder and contemplate the lives of all the people who have passed away that I have known. To be truthful the ones I really think about are the people who I am not sure trusted in the Lord Jesus as their savior. Some of the people listed in this folder are ones who I prayed for over the course of a decade or more. As I think about these people I remember all that Jesus said about hell, and how anyone that does not trust in Him will spend eternity in that awful place. I am very glad for those precious few people listed in my folder whom I knew had trusted in the Lord Jesus. This week we will learn some things that Jesus said about hell. We will see how even Jesus’ own disciples got distracted through their own spiritual pride which kept them from proclaiming the message that Jesus gave them, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matthew 4:17).

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a broad road with a sign overhead reading "Christians" and then with a small turn off to the right reading "for christ"

Sunday Mass Study Notes for 09-19-2021

Sunday Mass Study Notes for 09-19-2021 1200 700 Christians for Christ Ministries

Welcome back to the Sunday Mass notes. Recently I watched the movie War Room that featured a man who was engaged in a struggle between the wisdom of God and the “wisdom” of his carnal fleshly desires. We will read about what James said about this struggle in the second reading. Later I will provide some additional insights I gleaned from the movie. Then we will learn about servant leadership in the Gospel lesson from Saint Mark where we see the disciples arguing about whom among them was the greatest. 

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Sunday Mass Study Notes for 09-12-2021

Sunday Mass Study Notes for 09-12-2021 1200 375 Christians for Christ Ministries

One time while I was studying the first reading from Isaiah Chapter 50 I came across an interesting commentary on a web site. This supposedly Christian pastor wrote about the identity of the servant figure in the reading either as the Nation of Israel as a whole, or perhaps as he said, “an individual person.” Then he gave an analysis of verses 4 – 9a in which he never once identified the “servant” mentioned there with the Person of Jesus Christ. This contradicts the Gospel narrative who very clearly ascribed these exact events in describing the Passion of Jesus Christ (for example Matthew 26:67). This week we will study that reading from Isaiah and learn about what Jesus had to say in the Gospel reading about those who like the pastor I mentioned, deny or ignore that Jesus is the Christ of God presented by Isaiah. This week we will also learn from James about two types of faith, one that saves and one that does not. The key idea that runs throughout the three readings today is the faithfulness (or lack thereof) of God’s servants.

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Sunday Mass Study Notes for 09-05-2021

Sunday Mass Study Notes for 09-05-2021 1200 375 Christians for Christ Ministries

Welcome back to the Sunday Mass notes. This week, in the first reading, we examine the Prophet Isaiah’s message regarding the future healing coming from God upon the whole sin-broken world. This message especially resonated to the Jews who were under attack from the King of Assyria during this time. Then we continue the study from the Book of James in the second reading. We close with the continuing study from the Gospel of Mark in which Jesus heals a deaf and mute man.

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Sunday Mass Study Notes for 08-29-2021

Sunday Mass Study Notes for 08-29-2021 1200 375 Christians for Christ Ministries

Welcome back to the Sunday Mass notes. This week we open with a study of a reading from the Book of Deuteronomy in which Moses pours out his heart to the Israelites just before they were to begin their final conquest and enter the Promised Land. Moses cautions the people not to add to or take from the Law but to just simply follow it. Second, we look at a reading from the Book of James, said to be “the Proverbs” of the New Testament. Then we close with the Gospel reading from Saint Mark in which Jesus scolds the scribes and Pharisees for doing exactly what Moses told the people not to do by creating religious traditions, which they held above the Mosaic Law. In application, we will address the tendency toward formulaic religion and how God uses hardship to accomplish His purposes.

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Sunday Mass Study Notes for 08-22-2021

Sunday Mass Study Notes for 08-22-2021 1200 375 Jim Hill

Welcome back to the Sunday Mass. This week the readings focus upon the theme of God calling people to walk in a personal relationship with Him. In the first reading from Joshua, we see a challenge issued by God to forsake the false gods the people’s ancestors served. In the second reading, Saint Paul teaches about the relationship between man and his wife and the mystery of how this parallels that between the Father and the Son. In the Gospel lesson, we study a story where Jesus’ followers came to a point of decision concerning His identity as God in the flesh, the promised Messiah, the nature of whom they misunderstood.

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