One of the high school students in the church where I serve goes to a public school connected with the nearby university. It's an advanced school where they call teachers "professor," the athletic programs are typically uninspiring, and students are actually expected to learn at a high capacity. So, it's something of a novelty.
A couple weeks this semester students have been given a chance to go to a variety of classes put together by other students. Sometimes the classes are taught by fellow students or by outsiders that a student knows. In this format I've been given a unique opportunity to teach about Jesus in a public high school.
I have roughly one hour for four consecutive days to teach about Jesus. If you had four hours to teach about Jesus to a group of high school students what would you teach? What questions would you want to answer?
This is what I'm thinking so far, but I'm very open to suggestions:
- The Gospels – what kind of literature are these books? What do they tell us about Jesus? How should we read the gospels? History? Theology?
- The Kingdom – Jesus' primary message was announcing the arrival of God's kingdom. Unfortunately, few people ever hear about the kingdom and what Jesus meant by it. What did Jesus mean when he announced the arrival of the kingdom of God? What did his audience think he was doing?
- The Cross – It is an undoubted historical fact that Jesus was crucified. Rarely, however, do we think to ask why he was put to death. I want to look at both the theology of his death articulated in the early church and the historical motives for putting Jesus to death. Why did he die?
- The Resurrection – Apart from the resurrection, the emergence of the early church is baffling. What did the earliest believers mean when they said Jesus was raised? How did the early Jesus followers become the church?