Video Bible Talks
Dave Cornes, Alan Witchalls, 2017

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Overview

What does it say on the tin?

Video Bible Talks is a free expositional Bible teaching ministry that aims to equip, resource and support leaders with faithful Bible preaching and teaching using the medium of digital video. Video Bible Talks is best suited for churches where there isn’t a full-time member of staff overseeing each group and volunteer leaders either lack the time or feel they don’t yet have the skills and experience they need to prepare Bible talks for themselves.

What do you get?

Once you have created an online account (for free) you have access to a series of videos to either stream or download. If you download, there is also a leader’s guide to help you see how to incorporate the video into a teaching session with your young people. The authors intend to add more videos as and when they can (they are currently crowdfunding to make series 3).

The first series has 6 episodes exploring the Sermon on the Mount. There is also a series on Habbakuk and a one-off Christmas special.

Each video lasts 10-15 minutes.

Who is it for?

It designed for youth groups, approximately 5-15 people in size. It is for young people who are willing to explore the Bible and are committed Christians. It is best for older teens or young adults, as the delivery is fairly static, which may not hold the attention of younger teens. People who don’t have a faith may struggle with the intensity of some of the episodes. Small groups, Youth, Beginning, Growing. Online or downloadable.

Cost?

Free but the authors encourage a donation to be made

Review

  • What is the overall quality of material presentation?

    The videos are basically talking heads. Instead of having someone speak for 15 minutes in the youth group, the talk is given on a video. Having said that, the presentation is excellent and the quality of the video is professional. The presenter is engaging and easy to listen to.

    How clear are its aims and outcomes?

    The purpose of these videos is to put Bible-based teaching into youth groups who don’t have the resources to do so otherwise. This aim is met successfully. Whilst the individual sessions don’t have any clearly explained aims, it is easy to see what they are from reading through the suggested session guide and watching the video.

    How accessible are the leader’s notes?

    The leader’s notes are short pdf documents, which walk the group through the session. They include opening introduction, some questions to get discussion started, reading the Bible together followed by watching the video, and then some discussion, application and prayer time to follow.

    Who could lead it?

    This will be straightforward to lead with the skill needed in leading discussion after watching the video.

    How helpful are the participants’ resources?

    n/a

    How good is any digital material? Excellent.

    The website works well and looks current.

    How much prep will I have to do?

    You need to read through the session guide (sessions are designed to last about an hour) and watch the video.

    Is there website support? Links?

    www.videobibletalks.com

  • How well does it encourage interaction with the group?

    As with most youth resources, the session guides encourage discussion and sharing ideas and thoughts, as well as praying for each other.

    How well does it cater for a variety of both learning and delivery styles?

    The teaching is done as straight talks, with the occasional cut-away with the presenter’s voice over, and each session does follow a predictable pattern, but this enables you to fit to suit your group.

    How adaptable is it to my situation?

    This is down to the leader’s ability to take something and adapt it, but it should not be difficult for most leaders. It is best for older teens or young adults, as the delivery is fairly static, which may not hold the attention of younger teens.

    How well does it encourage people to work together in applying the material?

    Everything is based on discussing learning with others in the group.

  • How much of the material is Bible-based?

    All of it. Each session has a Bible passage to read and then the video explains and teaches around it.

    How well is the biblical material presented and used?

    This is where this resource excels. The teaching is excellent and clear (although occasionally uses ‘Christian’ language that may be a barrier to those not used to being in church).

    How well does it apply biblical material to everyday life?

    The presenter does a good job of explaining what the Bible teaches and then giving thoughts on the implications for our daily living today. The discussion questions following then help individuals to earth what they have learnt.

    Is there a particular theological perspective?

    The leader’s guide states ‘that the Bible is God’s Word and is our only necessary and sufficient authority in all of life and ministry’. The presenter Dave Cornes is Youth Minister at St James Muswell Hill.

  • How well does it inspire people towards whole-life discipleship?

    The series on the Sermon on the Mount is all about helping people to live as Christ intends them to live and each video helps them to respond to the challenging teaching in these chapters of Scripture.

    How well does it encourage and enable people to grow in their faith?

    Questions such as ‘Which of Jesus’s statements describe you well/do you find hardest to accept?’ help participants to think deeply about their faith and how they can live differently.

    How well does it stretch faith and vision of God and his purposes?

    By getting to understand the Bible better, participants get to understand more of who Jesus is and God’s plan for them, though this is not explored explicitly it is implied throughout.

    How well does it connect with real life issues?

    This will be largely down to how the leader facilitates the discussion times.

  • How well does it encourage personal evangelism?

    It doesn’t yet focus on this, but the leader’s material does provide plenty of content to use if they need to explain the Gospel clearly to members of the group.

    How well does it encourage local or network-based community involvement?

    This is not covered.

    How well does it connect with global issues?

    n/a

    How well does it encourage global mission?

    n/a

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