Category: Newsletter


The Resurrection and the Sign of Jonah – A Family Bible Study

Did you know that there is one Old Testament prophet whose story serves as a picture of the resurrection of Jesus? In preparation for Sunday, here’s a Bible study idea to do with your family.

When the Scribes and Pharisees asked Jesus for a sign, He said something very interesting: “An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth” (Matt. 12:39-40).


Family Discussion Questions:

  1. Why did Jesus point to Jonah as a sign? Make a list together about how the events in the book of Jonah foreshadowed the life and ministry of Jesus. You can read Jonah 2 together for ideas.
  2. Read Matthew 12:41. How is Jesus greater than Jonah?

Here is a list of ways that the prophet Jonah points to the One who is greater, Jesus:  

  • In numerous places in the Bible we see that water represents God’s judgment (such as during the flood of Noah). Jonah was cast into the deep, to the lowest depths of sea (Jonah 2:3). Jesus endured the full judgment of God when He died on the cross for our sin (Isaiah 53:5-6).
  • Jonah volunteered to be thrown into the sea to save the others in the boat (Jonah 1:12), Jesus volunteered to give up His life to save others (Heb. 10:7).
  • Jonah called out in his distress (Jonah 2:2), Jesus called out to God in His agony on the cross, “Why have you forsaken me?” (Matt. 27:46).
  • Jonah was “driven away from [God’s] sight” (Jonah 2:4), Jesus was driven away from God’s sight as pictured by the scapegoat in Leviticus 16:20-22.
  • While in the fish, Jonah said, “Yet, I will again look upon your temple” (Jonah 2:4), Jesus foretold on many occasions that He would rise again (John 2:19).
  • Jonah was in the fish for three days and three nights (Jonah 1:17). Jesus was in the grave for three days and three nights (Matt. 12:40).
  • The fish could not hold Jonah, it vomited him out (Jonah 2:10). The grave could not hold Jesus! He was resurrected the third day.
  • Jonah’s deliverance resulted in many Gentiles (all of Nineveh) turning to God. Because of Jesus’ resurrection, the gospel has gone out into all the world with myriads coming to Christ.

Most people know the story of Jonah being swallowed by a great fish, but many don’t think about the deeper sign that is pictured—pointing to Jesus rising from the dead.

This week as we celebrate the Resurrection, may we marvel in the depth of God’s plan, and the hope that we have because Jesus Christ lives!


This article was written in our March 2024 newsletter.  You can sign up for the monthly newsletters here


Grandpa is with the Lord 

Grandpa is with the Lord  (By Sarah Hancock)

On January 12, my grandfather, David Rodgers, was called to his eternal home. He was 97 years old. Grandpa has been volunteering for Bright Lights for about 20 years. If you have ever placed an order on our online store, it was probably packed by Grandpa. He was determined to continue to serve the Lord as long as he possibly could! He was always so happy to serve in any way possible, even if it was doing a job that seemed small or insignificant. We miss him a lot, but we rejoice knowing that he is with the Lord, and we are so thankful the Lord gave us so many years with him!

On December 17, 2023 something special happened at our church. My grandpa stood up to speak during the sharing time at the first service. He didn’t usually share at this time, and it quickly became clear to everyone that he had a powerful message on his heart.

Grandpa read Psalm 24:7-9, “Lift up your heads, O you gates! And be lifted up, you everlasting doors! And the King of glory shall come in. Who is this King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty, The Lord mighty in battle. Lift up your heads, O you gates! Lift up, you everlasting doors! And the King of glory shall come in.”

Grandpa said, “The King of glory is our Lord Jesus Christ. It was during the three hours of complete darkness on the cross during which the greatest battle of all eternity took place. The battle against Satan. The battle in which Jesus took the punishment for our sins. Jesus won the battle—and on the third day He rose again.”

Grandpa spoke with passion and ended with his fist in the air, saying, “We will be with Him for all eternity because He won the battle—He is the Lord of Hosts.”

His talk was so powerful that on the way home from church, one lady said to her husband, “I think this was David’s last Sunday.” She didn’t say this because he was sick, but because his talk was so impactful to everyone present. It felt like his final message.

Her words proved to be true. Two days later Grandpa came down with the flu, and he never made it to church again. This indeed was his last message—and what an important final message from Grandpa to remain in our hearts: Jesus Christ has won the battle. He is the Lord of Hosts.

Grandpa’s memorial service on February 3rd was a wonderful time of remembering his life and reflecting on God’s faithfulness. After the memorial service, many people shared with us about how impacted they were by Grandpa’s life of faithfulness to the Lord. You can watch the memorial service here. (Stephen reads the obituary at the beginning, and the sharing from the family begins at 21:00.) 


This article was written in our February 2024 newsletter.  You can sign up for the monthly newsletters here