It appears there is much preparation for this curriculum, however how is the balance maintained between the Old and New Testament studies?
Thanks for your questions. The United Methodist Publishing House is a participating member of the Committee on the Uniform Series, which develops the outlines for the International Bible Lessons for Christian Teaching and which we follow in Adult Bible Studies. This series began in 1872 and continues to be the most widely used form of Bible study. Its popularity is due in part to the careful way in which the cycle and the individual courses are outlined. It is estimated that 44 million persons on any given Sunday use Sunday school lessons based on the Uniform Lesson Outlines.
Representatives of the Committee on the Uniform Series, including editors from the United Methodist Publishing House like me, meet annually to review the Cycle Outlines and to develop one set of lesson outlines and Home Daily Bible Readings. The Uniform Series is developed in three-year cycles that define the scope and sequence to be studied each quarter and identify the central unifying principles of the studies. Each three-year block of lessons is developed in the context of the preceding three-year block of lessons. Each three-year and six-year block of lessons is evaluated to ensure balance in terms of Old Testament and New Testament studies, comprehensiveness in terms of biblical content and themes, and appropriate sequence in terms of historical, educational, and developmental concerns.
A specific plan of study is developed for each year in the Cycle. The annual Guide for Lesson Development is published to guide member communions and writers in preparing International Sunday School Lessons. Each lesson has a general Lesson Title; a Unifying Principle a Background Scripture, Print Scripture, a Topic; and statements of cognitive, affective, and behavioral objectives of the lesson. Once the annual plan of study is approved, editors of the various communions work individually with their writers to develop the lessons for a given quarter and within a given year. As a participating member of the CUS, we agree to follow the curriculum plan the committee develops, including the specific Background and Print Passages and the order in which they are presented. This insures uniformity in the Scriptures for Bible lessons used by denominations and member communions across the United States and around the world.
This is probably more than you wanted to know, but it's the full answer to your question.
Blessings as you continue to study the Bible.
Jan Turrentine, editor
Adult Bible Studies
Thank you for your response. I will communicate this back to our class. There appeared to be a focus on the Old Testament, but that would depend on what stage we are in for the study period.