Once upon a time – and for most of Judeo-Christian history following – there were no Sunday School classes or parachurch youth programs that focused on transmitting faith from one generation to the next. There was simply the kind of lifestyle God prescribed in Deuteronomy 6:4-9.
Certainly other forms of apprenticeship, and eventually, more formalized forms of theological education, emerged over time. But those were built on the Hebrew foundation of practicing faith with family, in community. From the time of the Exodus, an essential structure for community discipleship and identity was the cycle of feasts described in Leviticus 23. The Chosen People were discipled by God in time, living their sacred story celebrating God’s creation and redemption by participating in it each year – from generation to generation. [Read more]