A commentary with a difference!
Letters to Brian and Daniel is written as letters to two young teenage friends of the author. It is a walk-through commentary on the New Testament book of Galatians. The book is twenty-four studies and it will guide through the book, highlighting the major points that the Apostle Paul was making in his letter to the Christians in Galatia.
There are discussion questions at the end of each chapter to keep focussed on the major points. There are extra Bible references to reinforce the teaching and may help the reader learn about cross referencing.
How We Used It
I used this book with my two boys, aged 14 and 16. It can be used for younger children or for older people who have never read through the book of Galatians, or for new believers. Especially helpful for those parents who are not fully acquainted with Galatians.
The book contains 24 lessons and they can be read through in any manner. They could be read one chapter per day or one chapter per week. We did about 3 chapters per week. There is minimal teacher preparation.
Our Lesson Format
Each day I would ask the boys the main points from the earlier lesson. Most times, I simply looked back to the previous lesson’s questions as they emphasise the main points of each passage. Then we would read the passages aloud. The boys took turns in reading aloud from their own Bible.
I would read through the chapter in Letters to Brian & Daniel. I emphasised the areas where the author did. Some words or sentences are bold whilst others are in italics. It’s all quite self-explanatory. Not at all cumbersome or confusing.
Examine & Expand
The boys would write a selection of the passage for copywork. I would simply select a key verse or small section from the reading. Often we would just write out the memory verse. This further reinforces their learning. Using the verses or chapter as oratory practice/ recitation would also be helpful.
We concluded with a short time of prayer.
Phrases & Concepts
Focussing on one book of the Bible at a time is an excellent way to learn. The Holy Spirit revealed a lot to us throughout our study of Galatians. The boys also became familiar with various Christian phrases. Not Christianese but terms and phrases that are constantly referred to in the Bible, especially by the Apostle Paul. I don’t necessarily want my children to be well versed in Christianese but I do want them to understand Paul and the other books of the Bible.
This book is not devotional in nature. The concepts it deals with are meaty. But it is written in a way that even children can understand. There’s no reason not to learn doctrine when there are truth-filled, helpful books such as this. Letters to Brian & Daniel will clearly impart wisdom on the nature of God, the nature of man, the sovereignty of God, salvation, grace, faith, law and freedom.
This handy guide already has discussion questions revolving around the central points of the passage! But don’t be fooled by its simplicity for the concepts examined are heavy. I was quite surprised at the understanding level that my boys displayed, thanks to the Holy Spirit and John Dunn’s book.
This is a fantastic resource for teens, families, small groups, pastors, parents… anyone and everyone who wants to dig into God’s Word.
I thoroughly recommend this book and a study through Galatians. If you don’t know what to do next for Bible study, why don’t you grab a copy of this book and do it? It’s free. And meaty. Filled with practical nuggets of essential truths. Please let me know if you use it with your family for I’d love to hear your thoughts on it.