It’s Not Just for Kids
Sunday School isn’t just the class your parents used to make you attend when you were a child. And it’s not just for kids. Yes, Sunday school is a great place where children can have fun while learning the foundations of faith in Christ. It’s where the message of the Gospel can be brought down to their level in a way that they can understand and appreciate it, but its usefulness does not stop there. A good church, one that is dedicated to the individual’s personal development in Christ, will offer a range of Sunday school classes suitable for all ages and stages of life. Whether you are a child (physically or spiritually) just beginning to know Christ, a pre-teen or teenager dealing with growing pains, a young adult making real decisions for the first time, a single or married adult in the real world, or a senior citizen experiencing a new level of growing pains, the Gospel should be brought to you weekly with a message that speaks personally to you and introduces you to Christ in new ways. A good Sunday school class offers this and more.
It’s Not Just More Church
Church is where the believer comes each week for spiritual rejuvenation. It is where we come to hear a message from God and to offer praise and worship to The One True God, who has brought us through yet another week. The preacher has one job on Sunday mornings: to deliver the untainted Word of Truth. The preacher, through the Word of God, is supposed to provide instruction and clarification while uplifting souls weary from last week’s journey. But, with a mixed audience of all ages at different stages, the message doesn’t always reach everyone the same or at all. That’s where the Sunday school class can step in and fill in the blanks. It’s not just a scheme to get you to stay at church longer or collect another offering.
Sunday school is where your personal relationship with Christ can begin to take flight. On Sunday mornings, the preacher is limited by both time and availability. There’s just one of him and possibly hundreds to thousands of members. A question-and-answer session in the middle of morning service just can’t happen. It would be too time-consuming and, in a Black Baptist church like mine, service would really last all day. But, Sunday school is the perfect time to delve in and ask questions. It’s our opportunity for real in-depth study of the Word in an intimate setting conducive to deep discussion and inquiry with Christian brothers and sisters who relate to you and are also seeking to know God and His wisdom. A commitment to join a Sunday school class really boils down to your dedication and willingness to seek God. Anyone who truly desires to grow in Christ will jump at the opportunity to sit and engage in a Sunday school class.
It’s More Than Just a Group of People
We know that God loves to bring His people together. In fact, that was His intent from the beginning. When God made His covenant with Abraham, He told him that “all peoples on earth” would be blessed through him (Genesis 12:3). The Old Testament constantly prophesies that the nations would turn to God and be saved. And, Paul tells us in Ephesians that the establishment of the church is God’s reconciliation of His people together as one family under Christ because, through Christ, God has reconciled us to Him and adopted us into sonship. Therefore, we call our fellow Christians our brothers and sisters.
“God sets the lonely in families.” (Psalm 68:6a, NIV)
If the church is our whole family, then the Sunday school class is our special, immediate Christian family. In a good class, there’s a deep level of vulnerability and sharing of heart alongside the lesson. I can say from personal experience that the members of your Sunday school class will be your greatest earthly companions and allies in spiritual warfare. The bond between classmates goes far beyond exploring and growing together in the Word. These will be your brothers and sisters who will get in the weeds with you and pray with you in the time of distress. In Sunday school, we don’t just go over the lesson. We open up, talk about our hardships and give personal testimony of God’s grace. When one cries, we all cry. If one rejoices, we all rejoice. Even outside of the church, we see about each other and pray one for another. This level of vulnerability found only in the Sunday school class is one element that leads to spiritual growth. You never know how your own spiritual difficulties can lead to the strengthening of someone else’s faith.
Sunday school definitely isn’t all studying and it isn’t all crying and praying either. Christians do know how to have fun together and, in a good class where spiritual bonds run deep, you’ll find that there’s no lacking in laughs and humor inside and outside of the church. We always have a good time in my Sunday school class, even on the hardest of days. When people come together in Christ, you can’t help but find the love and joy that He brings.
I implore you to join a Sunday school class the next time you go to church. It will not only build you up spiritually, but you’ll find a group of people that you can truly depend on.