Listen to the readings here: https://www.tyndale.com/sites/immersebible/messiah-resources/ 

Join Immerse!

Everyone knows what is good for us—we should get more sleep, get more exercise, eat more greens, read the Bible, have relationships that encourage and support us. But it is hard to actually do those things. This fall we will engage in a special congregation-wide program called Immerse. It won’t help with going to bed on time, but will help us connect with the Bible in a new way and develop deeper relationships with others in the church. We believe that Jesus is God with Us—the best revelation of God you can get. The New Testament is where we meet him. Reading the New Testament is the best way to connect with Jesus, and talking about it with friends will deepen your relationship with Jesus and with your friends!

This fall, starting on September 20, we will launch a 9 week tour through the New Testament. But we won’t just be listening to sermons! No—we will be reading the New Testament together and talking about it with our friends! Unlike traditional Bible study, you’ll be reading the Bible in big chunks. Our focus will be on the forest, not dissecting a leaf from a tree. We are used to reading a paragraph here and there. With Immerse we will see how they all fit together. That is eye opening. And even life changing.

Over the course of 8 weeks we will read the New Testament (5 readings a week, each reading takes about 30 minutes to read out loud). That may sound intimidating, but you can do it! We will have a very readable version of the New Testament available and you can even listen to it read to you for free (either from a webpage or as a podcast). Each week we’ll introduce the readings in worship, you’ll read during the week, we’ll preach about those readings on Sunday, and you’ll meet in small book groups to discuss that week’s reading. This is not a deep dive, it is a chance to react to the books of the New Testament the way they were written to be heard—as a whole. Alice and Pastor Steve got to do this at a previous church and it was a wonderful experience.

Jesus is waiting for us in the pages of Immerse!”: Please pray about your willingness to encounter Jesus in the New Testament, think about a small group of folks you’d like to talk about the Bible with, and consider whether you’d be willing to facilitate the discussion (very easy to do, and training and support will be offered).

The Immerse Bible uses the New Living Translation,

which is a reliable and very readable translation of the Bible.  This Bible also has a unique layout and book order.  The pages are laid out like a normal book, so we don’t get distracted by notes and numbers that can make the Bible feel like a reference book instead of a narrative we are licing in today. 

The order of the books in Immerse Messiah is in the order of our readings.  We read the books in groups that are based on common authorship or common intended audience.  The effect of this is that we don’t read the gospels over and over and over at first and then leave them, but keep returning to them.  First we read the Gospel of Luke and then Acts.  Then we read Paul’s letters.  Then we turn to Mark’s Gospel and Peter’s letters and Jude.  Then it is time for the Gospel of Matthew and other writings directed towards a Jewish audience (Hebrews and James).  Finally we read John and the rest of the Johannine books- his letters and Revelation.  The book does not have study notes to interrupt your reading, but there are short book introductions (included in the readings) which are very helpful and orient you to who wrote the book, to whom, and the context for writing it. 

This site https://www.tyndale.com/sites/immersebible/messiah-resources/ has short introductory videos and a free audio clip for each day’s reading!   It is very easy to listen to the passage, and follow along in your book.  Or listen while you are in the car or working in the yard!  You can also subscribe (for free) to the Immerse Messiah podcast in your favorite podcast app on your phone which gives you the same readings in a podcast form. 

You DO NOT need to buy an Immerse book to participate—you can read your own Bible, listen to the readings, or read the NLT on line (see, e.g., www.bible.com or www.biblegateway.com).  We will make a chapter and verse reading plan available to make this easier.  If you do want to get a copy of Immerse Messiah, you can get an ebook from Amazon or Barnes and Noble, or you can get a hard copy from us.  They will cost $10.  If you’d like a book but can’t afford one, just let us know and we will get you one.  Some generous donors have already offered extra money to cover extra books!

You can get all the details at www.ImmerseBible.com.  

The key parts of Immerse are:  Reading in Community 

Reading –actually getting to read the New Testament and see how the authors shaped their work and how God speaks to you is amazing.  You can read or listen to Immerse for free.  This schedule is doable!  Each week we only have 5 days of reading, so you can catch up if you miss.  If you get behind, you can jump ahead to the current reading and keep going!

–in Community!  This part is critical.  We will be walking through the readings in worship, but can only address a short part of the week’s reading in a sermon.  So the really essential part is gathering in groups to discuss each week’s reading.  This is more like a book club than a typical Bible study.  You do NOT need any other resources or any Bible background to do this!  Immerse works great whether you’ve read the Bible a lot, a little, or really never. 

So PLEASE join an Immerse group.  Some of our existing groups are choosing to do Immerse together, and some are not.  Many of our Nites Out groups are choosing to do Immerse, and we hope that many new groups will form to do this.  You do not need any special knowledge or experience—just gather some friends and talk about what you read! 

Families can do Immerse Together! 

We have a special guide for families with children to experience Immerse together.  Each day there is a shorter version of the reading (just about 2 pages or less) and a few questions to think about.  Everything is included in this document!

Messiah QuickStart Bookmark 

Messiah Group Leaders Guide 

 

 

Immerse Sign Up

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