We have been following Paul as he lives a life on mission, seeking to fulfill the calling of Christ to make disciples. Our journey has been awesome. We first met Saul the bully in Acts 7-9. Then, we see Saul encountering Jesus Christ and being born again. Saul marks this event in his life by changing his name to Paul. This is an outward sign of an inward, spiritual reality. Then, Paul is trained by Jesus Christ. He begins to minister in the local church. While ministering in the local church, God calls him and Barnabas to go out to the Gentiles and make disciples. This begins his first missionary journey. After the first trip of making many disciples, churches were formed and Paul and Barnabas return to the local church and give testimony of what the Lord is doing among the Gentiles and Jews. A couple of weeks ago, we began to look at the second missionary journey. Paul and Barnabas go out again and begin to make more disciples. More churches are formed as a result of making disciples. A church is formed in Philippi. Then, another church is formed in Thessalonica and yet another in Berea. All of this happens in the midst of heavy persecution. Paul would gather people together and reason from the Scriptures. People would repent, believe in Jesus Christ, and be equipped to serve the local church and make more disciples among their own people, both Jews and Gentiles. This week, we are going to journey with Paul on his third missionary journey. We pick up the story in Acts 20. Continue reading
This coming Sunday we are going to learn about Paul’s first missionary Journey in Acts 14. I am excited for our kids because they are learning to discover the Truth of the Word of God for themselves. The valuable, basic Bible study tools that they are learning will stick with them for the rest of their lives and equip them to be able to open God’s Word at any time and hear directly from Him. Over the past month, we have covered Acts 4, Acts 8, Acts 9, and Acts 10. It has been neat to see how the Lord has worked in and through the lives of His disciples. He has given each of His followers the gift of the Holy Spirit and told them to be witnesses everywhere they find themselves. We saw Peter and John do this in Acts 4. We saw Philip do this in Acts 8. Paul began to do it once he encountered Christ and was born again. We ran in to Peter once again in Acts 10 when he shares the Gospel with Cornelius and a house full of Gentiles. Now, we are going to shift our focus to Paul and his missionary journeys. Continue reading
Hey, this is pastor Erik once again and I am working on getting prepared to teach on the ascension of Jesus Christ. Over the past few weeks, we took a look at the Crucifixion of Christ and His Resurrection. As we follow the events, this leads us to the ascension of Christ and the last commands that He gives to His disciples before going back to the Father. This lesson is more focused on the disciples than on the event of the ascension.
Last week, we covered the importance of the resurrection of Christ. It is an historical event that is well documented. We focused on the significance of the historical event by looking at Romans 6. The Apostle Paul discusses the significance of the resurrection for all mankind. Continue reading
So far, we have covered 4 lessons in this study on discipleship. I hope that you have been challenged in your walk with the Lord. If you have missed the previous lessons, you can review and catch up by reading these articles:
- Lesson 1 – The call to follow Jesus
- Lesson 2 – The cost of following Jesus
- Lesson 3 – Difference between a genuine follower of Christ and a false “follower”
- Lesson 4 – Are you totally committed to following Jesus?
I am not sure how you spent the last 168 hours of your life but I do know how I spent mine and I would like to share what happened to me with you. I would like to begin with a quote from Jesus Christ, in His famous “Sermon on the Mount“:
33 But let your first care be for his kingdom and his righteousness; and all these other things will be given to you in addition. (Matthew 6:33, Bible in Basic English)
This is a subject that I would like to tackle tonight at our church. At Good News, we are an active church, not sitting behind the four walls waiting for the people to come to us. We take the church to the people. There are many different ways that we do this. Some use English (like I do) while others use sports. There is also ministry via computers. There are many opportunities for our members to get involved. What happens when the members get so busy with the ministry that they start missing church services? When confronted, the pat answer is, “Jesus teaches us to go and make disciples and that is what I am doing”. Is this a good answer? On first appearance, yes, it seems like a good one. I would like to take a quick tour through a couple of passages, from the first church, to see if this is a good answer or if there should be a balance between outreach and serving in the local church. Before getting started, I would like to share a few quotes that people use when excusing themselves from coming to church or serving in the local church. Continue reading
I went to teach my two 8th grade classes yesterday and the theme of the lesson was the importance of choosing a profession. After finishing the Bible study “What does the Bible say about sex”, I have been invited to add a Biblical perspective on the topics covered over the course of the rest of the semester during civics class. Yesterday’s topic was careers, as I have already mentioned. I would like to share some of the truths from the lesson here. Continue reading