Our pastor’s wife is back, ready to teach, after fighting health problems for a few weeks. So I was looking forward to yesterday’s Bible study class. We’re studying Romans, and we just got up to Romans 1:18, and we were to study from there to the end of the chapter yesterday. I know that’s a lot to look at in one class time, and since the class isn’t really meant for those of us who like to study deeply, I wasn’t expecting a whole lot. Especially since she had said she didn’t want to spend a lot of time on that section.
Well, the church service ran over by almost fifteen minutes. That wasn’t a good sign. I got to our classroom at about 10:20 am, and watched as the rest of the class trickled in. Then our leader walked in at 10:33 and announced, “We have twelve minutes left to cover this passage.”
Now I was aware when I decided to attend this class that things would not be deep and heavy, but I do enjoy the fellowship and the chance to get to know some of these folks who never came to any of my own classes. But twelve minutes was a very poor excuse for a Bible study class!
Anyway, I thought maybe we could have some kind of edifying discussion for a little bit. We started out on the assumption that everybody was familiar with the passage, since we read it last Sunday, and we certainly didn’t have time to read it today! We focused on the point that “God gave them over…” to pursue their sin, whatever the consequences might be. The discussion centered on how we as parents allow our children, especially our nearly-grown children, to do things they probably shouldn’t do, to make decisions they shouldn’t make, and to suffer the consequences.
Sure, that’s a little part of the passage, but, ah well, we only had twelve minutes.
It was just enough for me to start getting my brain in gear.
Then our leader dropped the bombshell, “Next week we’ll start on chapter two.”
OK, so we almost completely ignore the latter two-thirds of chapter one? Why do I feel so frustrated?
Well, maybe they can start on chapter two, but I’m gonna make sure that the latter two-thirds of chapter one are not ignored. I’m going to do my best to tie the two together, because they can’t understand chapter two without understanding what went on in chapter one.
Yes, she’s been sick, and yes, she doesn’t want to get into a debate about homosexuality which could result from a more careful study of chapter one. I don’t want that either, but there is enough there that must be covered anyway, whether we talk about homosexuality or not.
(And people wonder why my hair is turning gray and falling out.)