Small Group Studies

At First Presbyterian Church we believe that small group studies are in integral part of one’s Spiritual journey. 


We offer both traditional Bible Studies along with other Christian Life and Bible focused programs. Our group studies are typically offered at 11:30 a.m. on Sunday mornings after our main service or on Wednesday evenings at 7:00 p.m. Sessions consist of a short video lesson followed by group discussion and run for approximately 60-90 minutes. Group sizes range on average from 5-15.


We encourage thoughtful discussion in our groups and approach the material with open hearts and open minds. There is no right answer when it comes to faith and often we come to better understand our own beliefs and grow closer to God by taking the time to understand what others believe and how others interpret what they have seen or read.


We have an open door philosophy, come for one session or come for them all. Either way, we’re always happy to have you join us.


Enrollment is free and there is no charge for course materials. One does not need to be a member of the Church to participate.  All are welcomed and encouraged to attend.

Past Group Studies


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  • The Gospel of Thomas

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  • DISCOVER THE TABERNACLE OF MOSES

    The First Presbyterian Church of Rutherford embarked on a 6-week study of the Tabernacle, the sacred place where God chose to meet His people, the Israelites, during the 40 years they wandered in the desert under Moses’ leadership. It was the place where the leaders and people of the 12 tribes came together to worship and offer sacrifices. The Book of Exodus describes an inner shrine, which housed the Ark of Covenant and held up under the veil of coverings suspended by four pillars and an outer chamber (the "Holy Place"). It also housed the Bronze Laver, the alter of Burnt Offering, the veil and items made from the gold, silver, brass, furs, jewels, and other valuable materials taken out of Egypt. The sessions included: The Tabernacle; The Altar of Burnt Offering; The Bronze Laver; The Lampstand; The Table of Bread and the Altar of Incense and The Veil, Ark, and Mercy Seat.

     


  • The First Presbyterian Church of Rutherford held a study of the Gospel of Mary Magdalene. Two books were discussed in hour-long book groups: "Unveiling Mary Magdalene" by Liz Curtis Higgs and "The Gospel of Mary Magdala" by Karen King.


    Discover the truth about the most myth-understood woman of the New Testament. Was Mary Magdalene a prostitute? An adulteress? The wife of Jesus? An ancient goddess? Higgs, best-selling author of "Bad Girls of the Bible," combines heartfelt contemporary fiction with extensive biblical research to bring to life the real Mary Magdalene of the Bible. In King's book, she tells the story of the recovery of this remarkable gospel lost for more than 1,500 years, and offers a new translation. King's brief narrative presents a radical interpretation of Jesus' teachings as a path to inner spiritual knowledge.



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  • Hallelujah: The Bible and Handel's Messiah

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  • The First Presbyterian Church of Rutherford held a study of the Twelve Women of the Bible. Lysa TerKuerst, Elisa Morgan, Jeanne Stevens and other leaders took participants on a journey of spiritual lessons learned from 12 biblical women and what they mean for your life today. 


  • The classic exploration of the Christian Community. After Bonhoeffer's martyrdom at the hands of the Gestapo in 1945, he continued his witness in the hearts of Christians around the world. In his book Life Together, we learn of Pastor Bonhoeffer's experience within Christian community. This story of a unique fellowship in an underground seminary during the Nazi years reads like one of Paul's letters. It gives practical advice on how life together in Christ can be sustained in families and groups. The role of personal prayer, worship in common, everyday work, and Christian service is treated in simple, almost biblical, words.


  • BIBLE STUDY: PAUL'S LETTER TO THE GALATIANS

    The course consisted of a 20 minute DVD presentation by James M. Efird. He is an ordained Presbyterian (USA) minister committed to making the Bible understandable and properly understood for pastors and laity alike. 


  • The Dead Sea Scrolls: Discovery and Impact

    The 12-week group study was presented by Prof. James VanderKam, Ph.D., one of the world’s leading experts on the Dead Sea Scrolls and professor of Hebrew Scriptures at the University of Notre Dame. The course was intended to provide background on the history and significance of the scrolls and was designed to give participants a solid understanding of what the scrolls actually are and of the community associated with them. The course also examined the meaning of the scrolls and the implications for the texts of the books in the Old Testament.