A Loving and Supportive Community



December 29, 2015

Thank you for a rejuvenating and vivifying NuSkool season that started in September with our Revival and Lecture Series.  Your presence at NuSkool is a blessing.

Thank you for the genial willingness to remind each other how important it is to declare the Lord’s Prayer, which is a series of determined affirmations, fifteen times a day.  The repeated declaration of the Lord’s Prayer has a certain energizing and healing effect, it can fire your whole being with new power and substance.

Prayer is simply opening our lives that we may receive what God has always been trying to bestow – conditioning our lives with God.  Kahlil Gibran (The Prophet) says:  “For what is prayer but the expansion of yourself into the living ether?”

I look forward to continuing our spiritual education together on Thursday, 07 January 2016.

Oceans of gratitude,
The Reverend Michael W. Walker

"The truth is powerful and it prevails."

Sojourner Truth

"Only God who made us can touch us and change us and save us from ourselves."

Billy Graham


It is of the very nature of the Bible to affront, perplex and astonish the human mind. Hence the reader who opens the Bible must be prepared for disorientation, confusion, incomprehension, perhaps outrage….. Thomas Merton.


The Lord’s Prayer: One Prayer, Three Views

Course Description:  The Lord’s Prayer
Offers both an exploration of the Prayer and an opportunity for learners to discover and nurture their own heart connection with a teaching that resonates with them. 
Course Structure:
The class will consist of lectures, group reports, and multi-media reports. 
Learning Outcomes:
After completing this class God-with-us disciples will be able to:
1.  Demonstrate an awareness and understanding of Christian Science, Metaphysical, and Afrocentric biblical interpretation.
2.  Demonstrate a knowledge of how African American scholars interrogate texts and contexts differently.
3.  Apply Christian Science, metaphysical, and African American biblical scholarship to your understanding of the Lord’s Prayer.
The intent of this class is to pose two questions for reflection and response. The first of these questions is “What role does biblical interpretation and prayer play in my personal unfoldment?”   The second question is “What is my role in the development of metaphysical or African American biblical interpretation?”
I pray that you will enjoy the study you are undertaking immensely, that you will find  
it fulfilling, and that your knowledge and the effort you invest in acquiring it will continue to bless your life long after you have completed the class.
When you have completed this class, you will be very well informed about three interpretations of the Lord’s Prayer.  I pray that you will be more than a well-informed God-with-us disciple.  I pray affirming that you will also have reflected in great depth about what you have learned, about what it means to you.

It cannot be emphasized too strongly that this is a study group in the best sense of the word. Therefore the success of the group is dependent upon disciplined and serious preparation on the part of all members. At the minimum, this preparation must be the careful reading and pondering of the selected biblical passages.

Our premise of group discussion has two interrelated aspects:

1. The primary task is to understand what the biblical writer intended to say.

2. Closely related to this is the question about what the text means for us in our historical and cultural situation. This calls for an exercise of imagination, like that of actors who put themselves into the script of a play. Remember, “The letter kills; it is the Spirit that gives life.”

The Bible is not a book of ancient history. It is more like the commedia dell’arte, a dramatic form that flourished in sixteenth-century Italy. In this kind of drama, the players were asked to improvise, to put themselves into the story. To be sure, it was not a free improvisation, for there were some given elements; there was the director, there was a company of actors, and there was a story plot that was given to them in broad outline. With these given elements they were told to improvise-that is, to fill in the gaps on their own.

In NuSkool Bible Study we are all called upon to improvise – that is, to put ourselves into the story and to fill in the gaps with our own experience. We must be ready to get onto the biblical stage and participate personally – along with the “company”, the community faith – in the dramatic movement of the plot. When the Bible is read in the community of faith the Holy Spirit enhances the human words of Scripture with the new meaning and power. 

The only condition for fruitful Bible Study is that you come with an open mind and an unbounded interest in the question, “What is the meaning of my life and the historical crisis in which I and my community are involved?”

This means:

  • You must be willing to let the past – this biblical past – speak to you where you are living, to make a claim upon you in the present.
  • You must meet others in the group as persons, respecting their individuality and being willing to learn from the conversation. 
  • You must come with the intention of wrestling seriously and honestly with the meaning of a biblical passage – not to air your private opinions and prejudices.
  • You must be willing to challenge the still largely unacknowledged interested, invested, racialized, culture and ethnic-specific practice of Eurocentric Biblical interpretation.
  • You must be open to reading the Bible through the lenses of marginalized people’s history and culture as a legitimate reading out of (exegesis) rather than an illegitimate reading into (eisegesis) the text.
  • You must accede that because an ancient author first wrote it and politically, economically, and racially interested Christians later believed and endorsed it, it is not necessarily God’s will.
  • You must expect to be questioned by the Bible, even as you bring your own questions of the Bible.

Recognize the interrelatedness and be committed to the wholeness of all people. This commitment transcends the boundaries of racism, sexism, classism, and heterosexism. The interpretive procedure must be grounded in the concrete reality of over-exploitive people’s lives. It is “grounded” in that it does not simply postulate theoretical formulations but also seeks to assist those forced to live at the margins or in the gutters in living out the gospel message and address issues that affect them. It may be that in this give-and-take experience you will discover an entirely new dimension of life.

 Family dinner at 6:15pm and classes for all ages begin at 7pm every Thursday

 Please Bring your favorite BIBLE!

Happy Anniversary Pastor Riggins We Love You 

Pastor Rev. Jerrell Riggins

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