The purpose of Sunday School is not to teach the Bible, but the Bible is taught to accomplish the purpose of Sunday School. This statement elicits lots of responses. Many people feel like the purpose of Sunday School is to teach the Bible. I was taught that teaching the Bible is one of the tasks of Sunday School. When I occasionally perform the task of taking the trash out, the purpose is to keep the house clean and smelling good. On the golf course, hitting the ball is not the purpose of golf … getting the ball in the hole with the fewest strokes is why the game is played. Seeing the purpose of Sunday School as teaching the Bible is one of the biggest barriers facing Sunday School.
What is the purpose of Sunday School? To see lives changed. The Bible is the textbook of Sunday School because Jesus is the answer to all of lives questions. Great commission teaching is “teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.” Is this the kind of teaching that is getting done in Sunday School?
By seeing teaching as the purpose of Sunday School, we have failed to focus on the stated outcome. The Bible is taught because God’ Word declares, “All Scripture is inspired by God and is profitable for teaching, for rebuking, for correcting, for training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work (2 Tim. 3:16-17).
Changed Lives—that is the GOAL.