Have you ever gone through a Bible study that just blew you away? You came out with such a changed perspective, more love for God and his amazing gift, and a realization that God is just more awesome than you could have ever imagined?
Ray Vander Laan’s series of studies That the World May Know is like this for me! Several years ago, our associate minister introduced us to this amazing video series and I highly recommend it.
As a historian and Bible teacher who studied in Jerusalem, Ray Vander Laan helps us connect the Biblical principles of each Bible story to the cultural context by showing us the places where the Biblical events happened and explaining their significance.
It’s so much more than a Bible study
There are many great Bible studies out there, so what makes this study different?
What sets Ray Vander Laan’s series apart is that you don’t just pop the DVD in and watch him talk. You pop the DVD in and then you set out on a Biblical adventure of exploring the text while exploring the Bible lands.
What’s the Significance?
Have you ever read a Bible story and thought, “Why did they do that?” or “Why is that detail included?” I have many times.
This is where Ray Vander Laan takes time to not only physically show you what these details would have looked like at the time but what they represented and what their significance in the Bible stories was. Understanding these details help us have a better understanding of how to apply these truths to our lives.
For example, understanding “the cup” that Jesus picked up and said, “Take this in remembrance of me” takes on a whole new meaning when you understand that that particular cup has a symbolic meaning too! Jesus didn’t just pick up any cup. You see every single cup taken during the Passover Seder signifies something.
In one of his Bible Studies, “Path to the Cross: The Fifth Cup: Our Way of Hope,” he explains the significance of each Passover cup and how the promises declared with each cup impacts us as Christians taking communion today, as well as how they impacted the Israelites when God brought them out of Egypt. Christ fulfilled these promises, and they are something we can cherish and remember now for encouragement until He returns!
The Path to the Cross
Last year as Easter approached, as many Christians do, I dug deeper into the Scriptures. I wanted to understand more than I ever have before. Truly, all we need to understand is that we are all sinful and that Jesus sacrificed himself, taking all our sins upon him so that whoever believes in Him will have eternal life. It’s really that simple.
What am I missing?
But so many times, I look at the days leading up to the Last Supper and think, “What am I not getting? What would someone from the first century have noticed that I just can’t comprehend?” Did the disciples sitting around that table, walking day in and day out with our Savior understand more of what was meant, even after the fact? Jesus said they wouldn’t understand it all at the moment but later it would become clear.
We have the fortunate ability to look back and understand a little more than they did in the moment, but we miss what their cultural context made evident to them because that is not how we live.
As an answer to prayer, I stumbled across Ray Vander Laan’s video lessons called “The Path to the Cross,” which is volume eleven in the series called So That the World May Know. (It was on Amazon Prime!)
This five-video lesson set blew my mind. I look at the Last Supper in an entirely different way now.
Not only did he discuss the last supper but the Mount of Olives, which is very different than how I pictured it, and brought to life the absolute understanding and anguish that those hours and days before the crucifixion held. Not only that but because Ray Vander Laan teaches these studies in the places or as close to the places where the stories actually took place, the visuals bring the Bible truths to life in ways I’d never experienced before.
These are perfect to watch as you prepare your family’s heart to celebrate and be even more in awe of Christ’s sacrifice and resurrection this weekend!
The best part is they are FREE on Amazon prime!
Watch the first in this volume by click on the graphic below.
Win the “Path to the Cross” DVD study and the Discovery Guide
Thanks to a donation by Zondervan you can enter to win this study as well as another!
Enter for your chance to win “A Path to the Cross”
The Death and Resurrection of the Messiah
I purchased this “Death and Resurrection of the Messiah” DVD and Discovery Guide from Zondervan a few weeks ago and have been excited to go through it. It contains ten lessons and can be used for groups or individuals. We enjoy watching them as a family. I love how my kids can see where these stories happened and understand that these places still exist today!
Previously, I’ve only watched the DVDs and had short discussions with our bible class or our small group. This time I’m actually going through the discovery guide as well, and let me tell you, it is great! I’m loving digging deeper with the discovery guide…taking time to soak in the lesson, chew on it a bit, and then enjoy it more.
When Storms Come
The first video lesson in this volume, “When Storms Come,” is only about sixteen minutes long. Enjoy it and be encouraged by seeing this story we’ve heard so often in a new way. Then enter to win it as well!
Win Ray Vander Laan’s “Death and Resurrection of the Messiah” DVD study and the Discovery Guide
Enter for your chance to win “Death and Resurrection of the Messiah” DVD study and the Discovery Guide
Messiah and the Resurrection
Have you seen any Ray Vander Laan lessons before?
What are your favorites?
- Back to the Basics! - February 24, 2020
- Blessing Others with a Valentine’s Day Heart Attack - February 10, 2020
- Are You Willing to Be Humiliated? - December 9, 2019
I’ve never read any of his stuff before – but it would be exciting if I could win 🙂
What a great giveaway, I would love to win this. I love to read and follow new bible studies
Hi! I’ve never done a Bible Study by Mr. Vander Laan, but would love either of these! Thanks to “That the World May Know” and Focus on the Family, I have seen and heard some of his Bible teaching. Wonderful!
I love when a study, sermon, etc goes into some detail! It can be SO valuable to know the cultural context, especially to help us avoid interpreting it only according to what WE are familiar with!
Dust of the Rabbi is one of my favorite, so far!
I need to look into this bible study. I love doing bible studies.
This is an awesome giveaway…thanks for hosting!!
I really love Ray Van derLaan. I have some of his series on video.
And a very good set of lessons for those who’ve never read his stuff
This looks fascinating! I always love learning about the Bible from a historical and cultural perspective.
I have never heard of this before but it sounds like a great resource to be giving away! Awesome!
Oh, Lo! You’ve got to watch these. They are amazing!
These look really interesting
Thanks, Ivy! It is a great Bible study.
This looks so interesting! I always love a Bible study that goes deep into why things are written the way they are.
Then you will really enjoy this series!
Ive loved the two Ive done so far…these look amazing & Id be excited to lead these ones also. I hope to someday have his whole collection. Its wonderful to gain the depth of better understanding scripture in context. Thank you.
His entire series is amazing. This is the first time I’ve used the Discovery Guides and am enjoying the extras that come with them.
I have been through all (except the two most recent) of RVL’s studies multiple times; each time I find myself coming away with a new insight or “ah-ha!” moment. The two volumes on discipleship were especially challenging (and convicting), and I find myself returning to them often as a reminder.
I watch them over and over and also come away with something new every time!
The discovery guides make using this study easy to use for small groups.
I like his wilderness series.
Loved the studys he did years ago!
I love Ray!