This was a very disappointing Bible Study - not at all what we expected from the information given. The creators of the study spent a lot of time and (and probably money) on this DVD and the scenery was beautiful, but it didn't really relate (in plain language) how the bible relates to our lives today. The ministers in each session looked off into the distance while talking instead of looking at the camera, and this was VERY distracting. The group I was planning to lead with this study are fairly new believers, and it was way beyond what would be meaningful to them. I'm sorry to say I won't be able to use this Bible Study - how disappointing.
This study is good for a group that doesn't want an intense and very deep study. It's not heavy. The study guides aren't necessary to if want a study that doesn't require homework. The only negative comment would be, the narrators don't look at you. They are shot looking off to the side, as if speaking to someone else. That's pretty distracting.
Wonderfully inspiring! A quality production from beginning to end. Well thought out and expertly produced. Having each lesson filmed in various settings and using different expert teachers to explore the historical background of the Bible helped make this one of the best DVD studies I've had the pleasure to participate in.
Zondervan's "Deeper Connections" is an excellent resource for the church or any small group. Matt Williams, the general editor of the series, has gathered together a solid group of scholars who are experts in their fields, but who can also communicate to the church. The series contains a dvd and participant's guide (both purchased separately). The dvd and guide are designed to follow a three-part pattern: a close look at the original meaning of the biblical text, attention to the historical and cultural background, and an encouraging and challenging application of the text's meaning for today. Thus, each study is broken up into three short segments that take small groups deeper into various texts of the Gospels. Between each of these teaching segments, there is time for group discussion. Jarrett Stevens, the host, introduces each section from a different location in Israel. This may seem insignificant to some, but it truly helps set the scene and context as each location is relevant to the text.So far my small group has gone through the first three studies and it has produced a lot of valuable and fruitful conversations. The teachers have all shown a great balance of challenging us to understand the texts and applying it to our lives. The dvd allows adequate room for discussion. I would recommend using the participants guide too as it has a section for five days of personal reflection that centers on the text that was just studied. This has been a great benefit that I have not seen very often in other Bible studies.Overall, Deeper Connections is a great Bible study series that challenges both our hearts and our minds and seeks to deepen our relationship with Jesus. It has definitely risen above my expectations. As it stands, my small group plans on purchasing the other two dvd studies.