|The procedure we follow for the Bible studies for a Season of Creation is designed to raise our consciousness to the significance of creation in the Scriptures and to connect us with creation through our study of these readings. Each leader should work through the session beforehand and relate the readings to the theme of the day.
Participants are urged to participate in the discussion and use memories of their past to give life to these discussions. Readings and roles can be shared. Someone may be designated in advance to lead the closing song. Each study is organised according to the following basic format:
Beginning with a Memory
Each session begins by introducing the topic and asking participants to remember a moment in their lives when they felt a similar connection with creation. This memory is designed to help us get in tune with the story of Earth as we read the key Bible texts.
Exploring the Text
There are four readings selected for each Sunday in a Season of Creation. Each Sunday has a central theme that links these readings in a special way. For our Bible study we have chosen a core reading to explore for a given Sunday. We will examine this reading in depth, taking into account, where necessary, the nuance of meaning found in the original Hebrew or Greek.
We will also relate this core reading to each of the other three readings for that Sunday to demonstrate how an important message about creation and our relationship to creation is progressively unveiled through the Scriptures.
Conscious of the Crisis
At pivotal points we discuss what a central message of the text might mean for us as Christians, and especially what it might mean in our current ecological crisis. We are not reading the text in a vacuum—our fragile planet is in danger. We need to be conscious of this crisis as we study. We need to be just as conscious, however, of where and how creation is being renewed and how we might be involved in some form of Earth ministry.
Connecting with Christ
With each study we also need to relate the message of the key text with the Gospel reading for a given Sunday and to ask how Christ is involved. We need to explore how Christ is connected with us as creatures and with the rest of creation. Where, we might ask, is the Gospel found in the text or in the wider context? How is Christ at work in the origins, suffering and liberation of creation?