Tag Archive for: adult study class

Weekly Sunday Bulletin – Apostle Matthew

Apostle MatthewNovember 16, 2014

When thou didst cast away the publican’s balance and wast united to the yoke of uprightness, then didst thou prove a merchant of great excellence, one that gathered in the wealth of the wisdom of Heaven; for this cause, the word of truth thou didst herald, O Matthew, and didst arouse the souls of sluggish men by signifying the dread day of reckoning.

Kontakion of Apostle and Evangelist Matthew in the Fourth Tone

Parish Council on duty:
John Ioannou, Jr., John Argiropoulos, Andreas Ioannou, Marion Koliniatis, Anna Merkel, Demetri Rapanos, Kathy Ziegler

Matthew 16:16-20

The Gospel of Matthew

Session 37 – 11/9/2014

Fr. John Codis


Jesus is Christ the Son of God


“But who do you say that I am?”

Peter was the first man on earth, whom it was revealed to him by the Father, to proclaim Christ as The Son of the Living God.

The revelation of the Messiah and His true purpose could not be realized through flesh and blood men; it could only come through divine revelation.

“You are Peter, and on this rock”

Christ will build His Church on such a rocklike “confession of faith” as Peters.

Peter is the rock – not in himself, but insofar as he embodies the Church’s confession.

Theodore of Mopsuestia says “This means he will build his church upon this same confession of faith.”

“I will build my church”

The church in this sense is not a building an institution with organizations, buildings, offices, services and meetings, it is understood here as a “gathering assembly.” Christ refers to the gathering of His disciples as “they meet to form and constitute the renewed messianic Israel,” the new Israel.

“And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven”

Peter is made the steward of the Kingdom with “authority to administer God’s house.” He will be responsible and given the great power and blessing to open the doors for thousands upon thousands of people.

Whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”

“Christ declares that His disciples, gathered in community, have power to speak with the voice of God. To join the Church is to receive the Kingdom, and to oppose it is to war against the Most High.”

“Then He commanded His disciples that they should tell no on that He was Jesus the Christ.”

To tell people that Christ was the Messiah was to spark rebellion against the Roman Empire. Christ did not want that to happen yet. The time would be the Cross and Resurrection.


Peter was given the great revelation of the truth about Jesus Christ; the responsibility and privilege. It is a revelation that we all have the ability to see and comprehend and when we are given it, the same privilege and the same responsibility will be laid upon us.

Matthew 15:10-28

The Gospel of Matthew


Seraphim Danckaert

Matthew 15:10-28



Both Law and Gospel: We Need Both

Section 1 (Matthew 15:10-20)

  1. In this section of chapter 15, we have a new law, a new set of Christian ethical principles. This law comes directly from Jesus, who gives a new Shema, a new “Hear, O Israel!”.
  2. The radical nature of Jesus’ new law is evident when compared to the old  law (Leviticus).
  3. “It is not what goes into the mouth [food] that defiles the person; it is what comes up out of the mouth [speech] that defiles the person.
  4. Reversing the “outward/inward” principle. Our own hearts and thoughts condemn us.

Section 2 (Matthew 15:11-28)

  1. In this section, we see the good news, the answer to our ethical problem, the solution to inner failure to live according to divine precepts.
  2. What we say is critical once again. “Have mercy on me, Lord, Son of David.”
  3. “Then Jesus responded and said to her, “O woman, your faith is terrific; let it be done to your exactly as you want.”

Conclusion: In the first part of chapter 15, Jesus broke decisively with a whole section of Hebrew Scripture, laying down a new (very difficult) law. In the next section, he breaks with tradition again, opening up salvation and healing to all who call upon his name.


Matthew 14:28; 15:1-9

The Gospel of Matthew

Session 34 – 10/12/2014

Fr. John Codis

14:28; 15:1-9

Collapse and Recovery, the Ministry of Christ, Clean and Unclean,

Breaking God’s law to keep man’s law


Opening thoughts and basis for discussion

  1. We cannot jump in feet first without knowing where our feet will land. It is necessary to consider all things then speak or make a decision.
  2. Preach the Gospel always, help those in need, never refuse to help, use words if necessary.
  3. Keep love in all things and to all things; to God and to his people.

Consider all the facts!

We too often act on impulse and without facing the situation and considering the cost; looking at a situation in all its bleak grimness before acting (Luke 9:57, 58; Matthew 16:24, 25).

Through our failures we can become closer to Christ. Although we fall from time to time, we are not perfect; Christ never falls and is perfect.

In every time of storm and stress, the presence of Christ and the love which flows from the Cross bring peace and serenity and calm.

“Preach the Gospel at all times, and if necessary use words” – St. Francis of Assisi

Christ always was visiting and healing people; he never refused to help! There are no words that replace an act or deed.

One of the most tremendous characteristics of Jesus is that he “taught men what God was like by showing men what God was like. He did not tell men that God cared; He showed men that God cared.”

We always want the privileges of being Christian but never its responsibilities.

Do not make up the Gospel and speak falsities

“The issue of transgressing the traditions of the elders had gotten so inverted that they were insisting that their own commandments be kept even if God’s commandment was violated.” Chrysostom.

“Not what goes into the mouth defiles a man; but what comes out of the mouth, this defiles a man.” The Orthodox Study Bible

Matthew 14: 1-12

The Gospel of Matthew

Session 3 – 9/28/2014

Sampson Kasapakis

Matthew 14:1-12

Herods Fears


Intro: Story-“Young and the Restless, General Hospital, One Life to live…”

Meaning of the story: The importance of knowing the people of the Bible passage, who they really are, and what their role is in the Bible passage.

Transition: Today we are going to talk about the two main people in this bible passage we will cover today. We will cover what their roles are and how they are different.

Herod the Tetrarch

1. Generally known as Herod the Tetrarch or Herod Antipas. Caesar Augustus of Rome ratified Herod’s position as tetrarch when his father, Herod the Great had died and his kingdom was divided into four parts.

2. There are plenty of Herods throughout the Bible. This one is not to be confused with:

a. Herod the Great, his father, who ruled when Jesus was born – Mt 2:1,3,19

b. Herod Agrippa I (nephew), who killed James in Acts 12:1-2

c. Herod Agrippa II (grand-nephew), before whom Paul appeared in Acts 26:1

3. His “Accomplishments” as Tetrarch: Governed Galilee and Perea for 42 years (4 B.C. – 39 A.D.), Built the cities of Sepphoris, Tiberias, and oversaw other projects, Imprisoned and executed John the Baptist (Mk 6:14-29), Sought to kill Jesus because He described Herod as “that fox” in (Lk 13:31-32), Later mocked Jesus prior to His death, which led to friendship with Pilate (Lk 23:7-12)

4. Herod had the potential and power to be a great man. But those in positions of power often have personal failings. Such was true of Herod Antipas since he was easily manipulated.
St. John the Baptist:

A. He was faithful to the Word:

1. His message was a call to lead everyone to repentance Mt 3:1-2

2. He did not back away from pointing out the sins of the king since Herod had married his brother’s wife, Herodias. It was an unlawful marriage for several reasons: a) Philip was still living, making it adultery b) She was Herod’s niece c) The Law prohibited marrying a brother’s wife – Lev 18:16; 20:21

3) Rather than change his message to accommodate the king, John was willing to go to prison and ultimately die for the Word of God!



The difference between them: Fear! Let us think to ourselves, what is our deepest fear?


Ending Quote from Marianne Williamson:

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

Matthew 13:51-53

The Gospel of Matthew

Session 31 – 9/21/2014

Seraphim Danckaert


Jesus said to them, “Have you understood all these things?” They said to Him, “Yes, Lord.” Then He said to them, “Therefore every scribe instructed concerning the kingdom of heaven is like a householder who brings out of his treasure things new and old.” Now it came to pass, when Jesus had finished these parables, that He departed from there”

1. This is Jesus’ “exam” after his course on the Kingdom of Heaven. He preached seven parables, each revealing a different facet of what the Kingdom is and what it means to say “Thy Kingdom come!”

2. Jesus’ concluding statement in this exam is that we must be like a steward bringing forth from the treasure entrusted to us both “new and old things.” This statement is unique to the Gospel of Matthew, and is a summary of what the Gospel of Matthew is all about.

3. This statement is the key to how we should read the Bible today. In reading the Bible, we too must be “scribes” — but a specific kind of scribe: the kind Jesus calls for here.

4. Bringing forth both “new and old.” The “new” realities of Jesus are rooted in the “old” things of Israel, and yet it is only through the “new” that we can truly understand the “old.”

Matthew 13:33-46

The Gospel of Matthew

Session 30 – 9/14/2014

Fr. John Codis

13:33 – 45

Parables of the Leaven, Hidden Treasure, and the Pear of Great Price


Opening thoughts and basis for discussion

To illustrate and make things familiar to his listeners, Christ drew from the scenes and activities of everyday life.

The transforming power of leaven

Leaven is like yeast. It can be seen working yet unseen working as well.

The comparison Christ makes between the Kingdom of God and leaven, is to provide a certain shock. This shock was used to derive interest and attention.

More importantly the point and purpose of the leaven is not to convert the whole world, but that the whole world would be reached in the “transforming power of the leaven.”

“The introduction of the leaven causes a transformation in the dough; and the coming of the Kingdom causes a transformation in life.”

“Sold absolutely everything he had”

The reason for giving up all possessions and selling them comes from the joy we receive from our discovery.

“Joy is the engine of change!”

“In the parables he (Matthew) represents (the kingdom) as of great value in itself and of great advantage to those who embrace it.”


We cannot compare occurrences with yesterday, last month or last year, but look at the whole picture. We must count our blessings through our entire. If we do then we see a steady progress of the Kingdom.

However we discover the will of God, it is worth anything and everything to accept it.

Matthew 13:24-32

 Bible Study Class

Rev. Dr. Christopher T. Metropulos

September 7, 2014

Gospel of Matthew 13:24-32


The Wheat and the Tares

 Opening Story: Chem Lawn & Weeds

Do not waste time or energy on things that are profitless.

In essence don’t let the turkeys get you down

Kingdom of Heaven is like a man who sowed good seeds in his field.

Parable- definition – a simple story used to illustrate a moral or spiritual lesson, as told by Jesus in the gospels.

True believers- wheat

False ones- weeds

Tares- an injurious weed resembling wheat when young.

Parable of wheat and the weeds is found only in Matthew’s Gospel.

  1. Weeds are intentionally planted- Not by God. Anyone can sow seeds of discontent in our hearts or the hearts of our loved ones. (Friends, family, business, acquaintances- Always be vigilant.
  1. How do evil things appear in our lives if we are living a life in Christ? Usually because we are not fully connected to God.

When are the places you are vulnerable? What methods can we use to discern good & evil?

  1. Prayer and contemplation- a complete emptying
  2. History- MRI of who we are through confession
  3. Teachings of the faith- our barometer
  4. Seeking advice of a spiritual father
  1. Need to make the wheat- our lives stronger in God and not necessarily avoid evil. We have to live in the world. Sometimes in removing what we think is evil, we kill the good plants or people.
  1. Closing Story- I’m a great pitcher! I just struck myself out.

Matthew 28:16-20

The Gospel of Matthew

Session 28 – 5/4/2014

Fr. John Codis

Matt 28:16-20 – The Great Commission


Facts about the Gospel of Matthew:

AUTHOR: Matthew, the son of Alphaeus (Mark 2:14)

TIME WRITTEN: Possibly between 58-70 A.D.


  • 50th Book in the Bible
  • 1st Book in the New Testament
  • 1st of 4 books of Biography  (Matthew – John)
  • 26 Books to follow it.



WORDS: 1,782

Major Theme:

“Christ, the Incarnate God, Immanuel, has inaugurated the kingdom of God and the new covenant, which is realized in the true Israel, the Church.”  Subthemes include:

  1. The fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy
  2. The revelation of the kingdom of God  
  3. A call to discipleship (4:18-22; 8:18-22)

The last meeting with Christ did three things:

  1. God – Christ’s authority – Assured his disciples of his power
    1. Destroying death by death and his ultimate resurrection prove Jesus’ universal authority in heaven and on earth.
  2. Humanity, created beings – Teaching and Observing – He gave them a commission
    1. We are called as Christians who are baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, to baptize in this name.
  3. God – The Holy Spirit – He promised them a presence
    1. God is always with us through the Holy Spirit because He is “everywhere present and fills all things.”