The concept behind Sabbath School has a wonderful foundation in God’s passionate desire to have fellowship with His human family, and to provide His human family enhanced opportunity for fellowship with one another.
Consider first the meaning of each of the two words of Sabbath and School.
Sabbath — a day dedicated by God for mankind1 for building relations with Him, with family2 and in ministering to the needs of others3 by laying aside our own concerns and pleasures4 and giving attention to learning to be like Jesus—through faith in the power of God’s word5.
School — an institution for learning transferable skills that can be applied to a variety of challenges that relate to creating and doing things of value for society.
With the meanings of Sabbath and school fresh in mind, consider next the inference of “value for society.”
The society here envisioned is the society of God6 and all His creation. Therefore, the foci of learning should be upon that which God places value. Since God has clearly revealed what is of value to Him7, we here have good direction. It must include:
The transferable skills we try to focus on in Sabbath School are the ones that place the student in a learning paradigm that maximizes learning breadth, depth, retention, empathy, truth, excellence, synthesis, and Godliness, and that motivates an eagerness to share the gospel.
Jesus taught by incorporating all the senses and using multiple learning styles and multiple intelligence-measure approaches to learning. Therefore, we strive to approach teaching and learning from many approaches and perspectives, but always Bible-based, and always with a view toward growing in grace and of valuing that which is of value to God.
From the start, the vision for Sabbath has included four specific objectives:
When your Sabbath School class is able to implement a strategy that achieves all of these objectives, your group will experience dynamic community and growth. You will grow personally in your relationship with Jesus as well as seeing observable growth in your church. How can this happen? The Sabbath School Department provides training, coaching and resources for these four objectives:
The global Seventh-day Adventist church provides a Bible study guide that is used worldwide. This study guide covers a sequence of different Bible topics. As your class interactively works through these study guides in an engaging way, your understanding of the Bible will broaden and your relationship with Jesus will deepen and grow. Dive on into the Bible with your class!
You can build great friendship with other Seventh-day Adventist Christians by regularly attending a Sabbath School class. You can take the fellowship opportunities further, by organising Sabbath lunches or picnics together and even build relationships by fun social outings or camps. The sky is the limit!
Nothing beats the feeling of doing community work together as a team. The Sabbath School class provides the perfect opportunity to plan and undertake a community project together, whether this is tidying up the garden of an elderly or physically-challenged or bringing neighbours and friends together to hear the good news about Jesus’ soon return. Think creatively, think community!
There are many people around the world who have not heard about Jesus and His soon return and made a personal decision to follow Him. Sabbath School has been committed to share the good news around the world and all of the offering collected at Sabbath School supports the global mission of the Adventist church. Your Sabbath School class could also think of a particular mission project somewhere else in the world to either support financially or personally through mission trips.
Contact the Director of Sabbath School if you would like to see this vision of Sabbath School become a reality in your church or class.
Sabbath School Videos – https://disciple.org.au/resource_category/sabbath_school/