Don’t forget to record your impressions and read the ideas outlined in the new Come, Follow Me manuals on ChurchofJesusChrist.org.
This scriptural insight comes from Verse by Verse: Volume 1 by Andrew C. Skinner and D. Kelly Ogden.
In Matthew 23:24, the Greek term translated as “gnat” may also mean mosquito or, more generally, any blood-sucking insect. This is one of many uses of paronomasia, a play on words, in Jesus’ teaching: The Aramaic text may be rendered, “You strain out a qalma, but swallow a gamla” (Black, Aramaic Approach to the Gospels and Acts, 175). This hyperbolic language spoken by Jesus denounced scribes and Pharisees, the would-be guides of their people’s spiritual lives. They gave too much attention to minutia, to the details of ritual and ceremony (comparable to pesky gnats or mosquitoes), and at the same time they attempted to incorporate a huge mass of accumulated rabbinic tradition and interpretation (comparable to an entire camel), neglecting the more important basic laws of justice, mercy, and faith.
These ideas and topics are compiled from Come, Follow Me and have been adapted for specific situations. Check out the manuals online for more ideas, or come up with your own as you study!
“Love One Another” isn’t just a Primary song. It’s also a great topic to study as a couple. Whether you feel like you have this topic down as a couple or it’s something you struggle with, consider talking about why love is such an important commandment and how you can show more love to those around you. Whether it’s someone you are close to and take advantage of (such as a spouse, children, parents, etc.) or a ministering brother or sister you are looking after or a new neighbor who just moved in, you might pick one person together and make a plan of how you will show more Christlike love to that person.
In this week’s readings, we find the story of Jesus Christ cleansing the temple. As you study this week, you might focus on how this applies to your life. Here are a few questions you might ask yourself: What was going on in the temple when Christ cleansed it? How do I spend my time with the Lord? Do little “gnats” or worldly distractions prevent me from remembering whose house it is (Matthew 23:24)? What can I change in my life or in my temple attendance to make the temple a place of peace, prayer, and spiritual healing?
For families with young children:
The parable of the man with two sons might be a good study topic for your family this week. Whether you reenact the story, draw it, or simply tell it, you can talk about the importance of obedience. You might ask your children which son chose the right and then ask them to think of ways that they can practice being obedient at home. You could even have them draw a picture of one thing they want to do to be more obedient this week.
For families with teens:
This week, your family might consider studying the story of Zacchaeus and talking about hypocrisy and judging others. You could ask your family to pray about someone in their life, whether at home or at school, who they might have judged because of their hobbies or the way they look, act, or dress, and challenge them to get to know this person better this week. Then you can share the results with each other next week.
Stay in the loop on Come, Follow Me discussions and insights throughout the week by following the Brightly Beams Instagram account, or check out this week's related Come, Follow Me FHE lesson: Christ Sees Us.