Greater Purpose, Pt. 2

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Church, no matter our accomplishments and our failures, our purpose has everything to do with our proximity to Jesus. This week, in our series, Greater Purpose, we are going to take a look at another significant character in the storyline of Jesus’ genealogy.

Jesus was the son of David, born in Bethlehem – the city of David. Where man sees outward appearance, God sees the heart, and David was a man after God’s. He learned to love God wholly in every part of his purpose: from the sheepfold, to the battlefield, and even into prominence.

As followers of Jesus, how are we to respond to God in every part of our own purpose?

  1. In the sheepfold:
    • David wrote Psalm 23 in the sheepfold when he felt alone and forgotten. He spent his time growing in intimacy with the living God.
    • Psalms 78: 70-72: He chose David his servant and took him from the sheepfolds; from following the nursing ewes he brought him to shepherd Jacob his people, Israel his inheritance. With upright heart he shepherded them and guided them with his skillful hand.
  2. In the battlefield:
    • The battle season exists for us to find courage in God, whether you win or lose.
    • 1 Samuel 17: 33-37: And Saul said to David, “You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him, for you are but a youth, and he has been a man of war from his youth.” But David said to Saul, “Your servant used to keep sheep for his father. And when there came a lion, or a bear, and took a lamb from the flock, I went after him and struck him and delivered it out of his mouth. And if he arose against me, I caught him by his beard and struck him and killed him. Your servant has struck down both lions and bears, and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be like one of them, for he has defied the armies of the living God.” And David said, “The Lord who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.” And Saul said to David, “Go, and the Lord be with you!”
    • 1 Samuel 30:6: And David was greatly distressed, for the people spoke of stoning him, because all the people were bitter in soul, each for his sons and daughters. But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God.
      • Your convictions aren’t really your convictions until you are tested.
  3. In prominence:
    • Regardless of his kingship, David worshiped the Lord undignified.
    •  2 Samuel 6:14-17: And David danced before the Lord with all his might. And David was wearing a linen ephod. So David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of the Lord with shouting and with the sound of the horn. As the ark of the Lord came into the city of David, Michal the daughter of Saul looked out of the window and saw King David leaping and dancing before the Lord, and she despised him in her heart. And they brought in the ark of the Lord and set it in its place, inside the tent that David had pitched for it. And David offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before the Lord. 

The point of the season – no matter in which one you are currently residing – is to connect with the living God.

Biblical references: Psalms 78: 70-72; 1 Samuel 17: 33-37; 1 Samuel 30:6;  2 Samuel 6:14-17 

Questions:

  1. What season are you in, the sheepfold, battlefield, or prominence?
  2. How can you receive the intimacy of God in the season you are currently in?
  3. There is purpose and intention for each season, where are the places you can come alongside others in your life to rejoice, fight or comfort them in their season?

Message Recap: Greater Purpose, Pt. 1

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As we begin a new series, let’s start with this: you have purpose, and it is great. In the next few weeks, we are going to look at the genealogy of Jesus, because it matters and because it is indicative of the facet that and of us have purpose.

Matthew 1:1-17: The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.

Abraham was the father of Isaac, and Isaac the father of Jacob, and Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers, and Judah the father of Perez and Zerah by Tamar, and Perez the father of Hezron, and Hezron the father of Ram, and Ram the father of Amminadab, and Amminadab the father of Nahshon, and Nahshon the father of Salmon, and Salmon the father of Boaz by Rahab, and Boaz the father of Obed by Ruth, and Obed the father of Jesse, and Jesse the father of David the king.

And David was the father of Solomon by the wife of Uriah, and Solomon the father of Rehoboam, and Rehoboam the father of Abijah, and Abijah the father of Asaph,[b] and Asaph the father of Jehoshaphat, and Jehoshaphat the father of Joram, and Joram the father of Uzziah, and Uzziah the father of Jotham, and Jotham the father of Ahaz, and Ahaz the father of Hezekiah, 10 and Hezekiah the father of Manasseh, and Manasseh the father of Amos, and Amos the father of Josiah, 11 and Josiah the father of Jechoniah and his brothers, at the time of the deportation to Babylon.

12 And after the deportation to Babylon: Jechoniah was the father of Shealtiel, and Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel, 13 and Zerubbabel the father of Abiud, and Abiud the father of Eliakim, and Eliakim the father of Azor, 14 and Azor the father of Zadok, and Zadok the father of Achim, and Achim the father of Eliud, 15 and Eliud the father of Eleazar, and Eleazar the father of Matthan, and Matthan the father of Jacob, 16 and Jacob the father of Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom Jesus was born, who is called Christ.

17 So all the generations from Abraham to David were fourteen generations, and from David to the deportation to Babylon fourteen generations, and from the deportation to Babylon to the Christ fourteen generations.

What does the genealogy of Jesus, as listed here in Matthew, reveal to us?

  1. Jesus only has 1 biological parent
    • He is the only person that has ever existed on Earth without a biological father
  2. Jesus has two very famous ancestors: David and Abraham
    • His birth fulfills prophecy
    • Anything we could ever accomplish on Earth pales in comparison to our connectedness of Jesus
  3. Jesus connects 3 distinctive eras
    • Abraham –> David: the Patriarch
    • David –> deportation: the Monarchy
    • Deportation — Christ: the Dark Ages
    • Jesus was the ruler over every generation, just as He is the ruler over our own, today.
  4. Jesus has serious dysfunction in His genealogy
    • It’s a display of grace

2 Corinthians 4:6: For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

Your greatest accomplishment, nor your greatest failure, will be your eternal marker. What marks you for eternity is your connectedness to Jesus.

Biblical references: 1 Matthew 1-17; 2 Corinthians 4:6 

Questions:

  1. As you think about how you are connected to Jesus, how does that change the way you view of grace?
  2. How does the truth that your eternal marker is your connection to Jesus, shift your perspective on your failures and your accomplishments?
  3. God has called you into a greater purpose. Reflect this week on how God has called you to live for Him.

Message Recap: Real Friends

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Do you remember your first visit to mosaic? I remember mine.

When I first came to a Mosaic Sunday Service almost 7 years ago I was 18 years old and I had just moved from California to go to school and I was looking for a church. The church that I had come from was huge, I think over 3,000 people. So my experience that Sunday at Mosaic with 50 people was extremely different from what I was used to.

At the time Mosaic was meeting in the Queen Anne Community Center Gymnasium.

  • My church at home used their basketball gym. To play basketball but Mosaic was using it for a church.
  • My church at home had over 300 high schoolers in our youth group. Mosaic had about 3 people under the age of 18.
  • The stage at my home church took up more space than the 100 chairs set up that day.
  • The worship band at my home church had dozens of team members for multiple services in different age group ministries. I heard that sometimes the same guy that preached led worship because they were short handed.

My my first visit to Mosaic was so different from what I had ever experienced before. But can I tell you the thing that stood out to me the most that day? The thing that was actually the most different from what I was used to?

The people at Mosaic were real friends. That Sunday I remember meeting so many people and walking away with this sense that these people really loved each other. That they were really a community. I hadn’t seen that in church before.

The practical difference between the space and the service were significant. But what was really most shocking was the way these people were real friends.  That’s what kept me coming back, it was the people that were committed to each other and I wanted to be part of something like that. No matter how dingy the gym was. No matter if the sermon entertained me or not, no matter if the worship band played the songs I knew. I saw a family and I wanted to be part of it.

Seven years later and I’m still going strong. I love our church. Mosaic is like family to me. I’m so thankful that I get to call this church home.

We are in a really exciting season as a church. Purchasing our building on Aurora, beginning demolition and renovation in a few weeks. We have missionaries all over the world seeing God do incredible things. We are planting churches. People are putting their trust in Jesus across our city. It’s an incredible time to be part of Mosaic.

As our impact in our city grows, which I believe it will with our new building. As we continue to grow as a church and see God move all over the world. You know what would make all those accomplishments so much sweeter?

If we were real friends.

I really want Mosaic to be part of loving our city, bringing heaven to earth in our region and around the world. But you know even more than that, to do all that and gain real friends in the process. Where we get to the end, look back at all that we got to see God do and to look around me and see real friends… Deep friendships.

I think there are churches that are all about the mission. They’re seeing incredible things happen all around the world. I think there are churches that have deep rich friendships, a family feel. I want both. Why not?

Why can’t we be real friends on mission for God?

How do you feel about your friendships at Mosaic? Do you have real friends here? Are there people that you could go to for help, to talk, or to have fun with? Do people come to you for help, to talk, or to have fun with?

Do you have real friends at Mosaic? I imagine this morning if each of us shared our answers to that question we’d have quite the spectrum of answers.

FIRST TIME – Maybe this is your first time to Mosaic and you’re like “I actually haven’t met a single person here. My friendships here are terrible!”

NO FRIENDS – I bet some of you have been coming, you’ve been part of Mosaic for awhile.. Maybe even years and can’t honestly say that you have real friends here. It’s been mostly surface level. There’s no one that you’d call a real friend.

LOTS OF FRIENDS – and I know there’s folks here that have deep, rich friends within Mosaic.

Do you have real friends at Mosaic? What do I mean when I say real friends?

 

It’s intangible. But when you have them you know.

Did Jesus have friends? Have you ever wondered if Jesus had friends? What were his relationships like? You may know that Jesus had the 12 disciples but do you think he had a best friend?

Jesus was committed to the mission of saving the world but I have to think he was real friends with some of the people in his life.

I love how this is depicted in the film Passion of the Christ.  One of my favorite scenes from that is when Jesus was building a table and interacting with his mother, Mary. This scene is not recorded in the Bible and the Director is clearly using a theological imagination. But I love how it depicts what Jesus friendships may have looked like.

Check it out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_6tJ9qk9SY

Not at the cost of the mission. Jesus didn’t have to give up on the mission to have real friends. He actually had real friends because of the mission.  Right in the middle of fulfilling what God was calling him to, he made real friends.

Jesus gives us a definition for friendship for us in John 15:12-15. He’s speaking to his disciples at the last supper.

“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. You are friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.”

Jesus calls his disciples his friends. Not merely servants to do his work but friends. These people he’d spent the last three years with travelling, teaching, laughing, eating, spending time together. These were his friends.

How does Jesus define friendship for us in this passage? He says, “Greater love has no one than this that someone lay down his life for his friends.”

Real friendship involves sacrifice. It actually costs something to be a real friend. It requires us to give of ourselves for another. Additionally, Jesus says, “You are my friends if you do what I command you.”

It’s easy to read this as a conditional friendship. Like follow my rules and we can be friends. But I think Jesus is actually saying something much deeper. I think Jesus is telling his disciples, when you live on mission, when seek first the kingdom of God, you gain marvelous friends in the process. He’s telling the disciples we’re friends because you’re living this mission with me.

Jesus friends’ were the ones he lived the mission with. The mission was to demonstrate the love of God to the whole world. That’s the same mission that he has invited us into.

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:34-35

What if that’s what people said about us? When they watch us love one another, when people see us being real friends. They’re drawn closer to God. When we love our friends we advance the mission of God: people knowing his love.

We’ve created this false dichotomy where it’s either deep friendships or it’s accomplishing the mission of God. Why not both? Why not us? Why can’t we be the ones that take Jesus at his word, live on his mission to love the world and grow real friendships in the process.

How do you feel about your friendships at Mosaic?

Our answers would vary drastically, I’m sure of it. Friendship can be really hard and life can be really lonely sometimes. I just want to say if you feel that you don’t have any friends here and you’ve never really felt connected here. I’m so sorry. Life can be really lonely and the fact that you don’t have that here. I’m sorry.

Friendships also often happens in seasons. For whatever reason people move, people leave, relationships change. It’s hard.

However you feel this morning about your friendships at Mosaic I am hopeful. That when we look to Jesus, when we follow his lead we can and will develop meaningful and lasting friendships. It can be really hard. But I believe it’ll be worth it.

For the first 18 years of my life I didn’t think this way.

I grew up attending a church.  I would go to the events, to the gatherings. But I thought of church more like an organization or an event. I didn’t think church like we think about church. Like a family. 

I went to school in a town about 20 minutes away and most of the kids in my youth group went to the school in the town our church was in. So I was like, I’m the outsider here. I’m not really looking to be friends with these people. 

Is that how you think about relationships here at Mosaic? Has church been an attendance. Or observational activity for you?

Not like, I have my friends over here and then I have my church over here. But like, my friends, real people that I rely on, who rely on me. Like my church is a family to me. Have you allowed yourself to be in the vulnerable position?

We need it. We need real friendships in our church. Without real friendships we aren’t being the church that Jesus intended. I don’t mean you’re best friends with every person that’s part of Mosaic, that will never happen.

But having real friends

  • The friends you can call when you run out of gas and need someone to help you.
  • The friends you can ugly cry with when you experience heartbreak.
  • The friends who give you money to pay the bills you can’t afford.
  • The friends who make you laugh until you cry.

I believe we can do it Mosaic. I believe we can be a church that lives on mission that gets to be part of incredible things all over the world all the well developing real and lasting friendships.

How do we get there? Have you experienced the friend cliff? I bet you have. What’s the friend cliff? The friend cliff happens when you have a life change, you move, you graduate, you start a new job, you get married, you have a kid. And you have to commit again to friendships.

For most people. You don’t really have to work that hard to make friends until after college. Young adult life is the first time you’ve really had to go out and figure out this friendship thing. Elementary school, middle school, high school, college. You have classmates, teammates, floormates, roommates,  a lot of times friendships just happen. But then you get to the young adult life and BAM friend cliff!

 

Every season change requires us to commit again to friendships. To try again to figure it out again how to have real friendships.

WANT A FRIEND? BE A FRIEND Being friends takes work. Finding friends, making friends, keeping friends takes work.

 

But the answer isn’t waiting for someone else to be your friend. The answer is you going to be someone else’s friend. To commit to being a friend even before it feels good.

You know a familiar passage for us at Mosaic is Acts 2. We get this really clear picture of what the early church looked like Acts 2:42 says that the early church was DEVOTED TO THE FELLOWSHIP. The early church was committed to being real friends. Not friends on convenience but friends because they knew that was God’s plan.

Why do we think of community only happening in small churches? Why not us? Why not when we move into this new building? We can only do this, because Jesus did it for us first.

Jesus is the perfect friend because he sacrificed himself for our sake. He died so that we might live. He invited us to be friends with others around us because he wants them to know his love. He loved us first. So that we could love others.

Being real friends is a great key to accomplishing the mission God has called us on. And as we be the church together in Seattle. We can’t miss God’s invitation to the church to be real friends together.

Will Aufhammer

Questions

  1. How are you being a friend? What are areas you can grow in the friendships God has called you to?
  2. What would it look like to be friends on a mission? How would that deepen, strengthen and grow your friendships?
  3. What would our church look like if we were more than just a building, but a community of friends called to carry out the plans and purposes God has for our city?
  4. Are there any practical steps you can take this week to walk out in biblical friendship?

Message Recap: Building the House, Pt. 6

 

give-2Mosaic, we are a generous people! That is something that we pray never changes about us, regardless of whether or not we are building-owners. Generosity is something we are called to as people of Jesus, and it means more than giving what you can spare. Generosity is the gift of a cheerful giver, the sacrifice of a heart that knows the goodness of Jesus.

What does it look like for us to be a generous people? It’s more than money; it’s time, emotional investment, talent, etc. We need generosity through every relationship in our church: friendships, marriages, and parenting.

If a person has a generosity problem, they have a gospel problem. God’s story commands generosity. He created and gave so abundantly to humanity. He emptied Himself in sending Jesus to save the world – to save us.

Luke 23:34: And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”

Colossians 1:16-17: For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.

Mark 10:19-22: You know the commandments: ‘Do not murder, Do not commit adultery, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Do not defraud, Honor your father and mother.’”And he said to him, “Teacher, all these I have kept from my youth.” And Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, “You lack one thing: go, sell all that you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” Disheartened by the saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions.

In Mark 10, the man to which Jesus speaks doesn’t understand that the value of Jesus is far greater than the value of his possessions. This is why generosity is so closely intertwined to the gospel; we must understand our gift in order to give freely in return.

2 Corinthians 9:7: Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. Generosity requires sacrifice. It has nothing to do with the amount and everything to do with the heart.

Biblical references: Luke 23:34, Colossians 1:16-17, Mark 10:19-22, 2 Corinthians 9:7

Questions:

  1. What is holding you back from freely giving all that you have freely been given? Ask God to bring to light any area in your own heart that doesn’t align with the heart of God.
  2. How is God calling you to give cheerfully of your time, resources, and finances?
  3. What does it look like for you to show generosity through your relationships including in the church, friendships, marriages, and parenting?

Message Recap: Celebrating Father’s Day

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The heart of our Heavenly Father is to lay down His life for us, His children. Similarly, the role of a father on Earth is to lay down his life for his own children. Today, we pause in our sermon series, Building the House, to honor our dads on Father’s Day.

Genesis 12:2-3: And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse, and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.

God planned to bless every family on the earth through Abram, the famous Biblical father referenced here in Genesis. Through his story, we learn 3 Truths about fatherhood:

  1. God intended fatherhood to be desirable
    • Genesis 15:1-4: After these things the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision: “Fear not, Abram, I am your shield; your reward shall be very great.” But Abram said, “O Lord God, what will you give me, for I continue childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?” And Abram said, “Behold, you have given me no offspring, and a member of my household will be my heir.” And behold, the word of the Lord came to him: “This man shall not be your heir; your very own son shall be your heir.”
    • The cultural perception of fatherhood is that it is nothing more than a necessary evil, rather than something to be desired.
    • But, fatherhood brings joy, and it’s a chance to reproduce something better than yourself! It is an incredible honor, and a very high calling.
  2. Fatherhood is something to be thankful for
    • Genesis 21:1-8: The Lord visited Sarah as he had said, and the Lord did to Sarah as he had promised. And Sarah conceived and bore Abraham a son in his old age at the time of which God had spoken to him. Abraham called the name of his son who was born to him, whom Sarah bore him, Isaac. And Abraham circumcised his son Isaac when he was eight days old, as God had commanded him. Abraham was a hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him. And Sarah said, “God has made laughter for me; everyone who hears will laugh over me.” And she said, “Who would have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? Yet I have borne him a son in his old age.”
    • Fathers, the enemy wants you to fail as a dad. He plants lies to make you think fatherhood is a burden, and not a blessing.
      1. The antidote is thankfulness, to diffuse and deflect the lies of the enemy.
  3. Every father can afford their children an inheritance of faith
    • Hebrews 11:8-10:  By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going. By faith he went to live in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, living in tents with Isaac and Jacob, heirs with him of the same promise. For he was looking forward to the city that has foundations, whose designer and builder is God.
    • A father that makes a lot of money leaves for their children exactly that: a lot of money. But the father that gives money away in obedience to God gives his children an inheritance of generosity, and the father that makes his money lawfully leaves an inheritance of integrity. The father that is wealthy monetarily can give an extravagant wedding to his children, but the father that honors his vows to his wife leaves his children an inheritance of faithfulness.

Thank you, dads, for all that you do. We pray you feel overwhelmed with love and celebration today, from all of us!

Biblical references: Genesis 15:1-4; Genesis 21:1-8; Hebrews 11:8-10

Questions:

  1. How can you be someone who encourages and lifts up physical and spiritual fathers in your life?
  2. Do you believe in the fullness of God as a good father? Where are the places you have misconceptions of the character of God and need the Holy Spirit to come and bring revelation and healing?
  3. What a joy it is to leave the next generation an inheritance of faith in Jesus! What does this look like for you today?

Message Recap: Building the House, Pt. 5

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What does it look like for us to be a church for the city? We are asking ourselves this question this week, as we are in the process of transforming a building that has historically been used for profit into a building that gives generously away.

What is the process, then?

  1. Exploring: looking for a place
  2. Finding: the hope of what could be
  3. Securing: it becomes a reality
  4. Renovating: making it what it is to be
  5. Welcoming: sharing it with others

In this process, we don’t want to be task-oriented, but people-oriented.

Matthew 5: 14-16: You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.

Jesus is the light of the world, yes, but He lives in you. You are truly the light of the world! You are God’s ‘Plan A’. What a responsibility, and what a joy!

What does this mean?

  1. The world is dark without you.
  2. You are necessary and have a purpose.
    • Your light shining is what allows others to see.
  3. God wants you to stand out and be seen.
    • Meekness is controlled strength, not timidity or fear of being the light.
  4. God wants others to see how you live.
  5. God wants you to do good.
  6. God wants people to see you doing good.
  7. God wants the good you do to cause others to acknowledge that He is real.

We are a church for the city. Therefore:

  1. We are not merely a church in the city, existing within its physical boundaries.
  2. We are not against the city, creating boundaries enclosing our own light.
    • John 3:16: For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
    • We are not driven by animosity but by love.
  3. We are not of the city.
    • The city does not have possession over us. We are God’s. We are of God.
  4. We are for the city. We want it to be all that it can be.

So, in the context of the gospel, what does the process of salvation look like?

  1. Exploring: we are searching for Jesus
  2. Finding: we hear about Jesus
  3. Securing: we decide to trust Jesus
  4. Renovating: we are made holy
  5. Welcoming: we tell others

Friend, let your light shine. Let it be tangible! Our building doesn’t replace our good works, but accelerates them. It’s not the answer, but it will help us drive farther and faster in aligning with God’s mission to serve the city.

Biblical References: Matthew 5:14-16; John 3:16

Questions:

  1. What does it look like for you personally to be the church FOR the city? How can you be people-oriented not task-oriented?
  2. Ask God what it looks like for you to be a light in the darkness in your neighborhood, your work, you family, and in the city.
  3. Are there places of unbelief that God has called you out of darkness and into His marvelous light? Ask God to reveal the lies and replace it with the truth that He has set you free to be light to those around you! People will experience the goodness of God by the way you live free in Jesus!

 

Message Recap: Building the House, Pt. 4

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This week, we continue to look to the Bible to assure us of our identity in Jesus as we move into a new (and exciting!) season as the owner of a building. We are a church because we are a people, not because we have a building. Unfortunately today, saying something is true because the Bible says it’s true carries less and less weight, culturally. But we are a people that hold firm to the Bible – it is the command of God for us – both in victory and in brokenness, triumph and defeat.

The Bible answers humanity’s deepest cravings; it goes deeper than reasoning. It is the bridge between our heads and our hearts. It is always relevant, always profound, and it was written for each and every one of us. It is a guide for every terrain in this life, no matter how challenging. We believe in the Bible.

As a church, we hold fast to 3 beliefs about the Word:

  1. The Bible is uniquely inspired
    • 2 Peter 1:20-21: knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.
    • It is historically accurate. It is historically sound, more so than any other ancient text that exists.
    • 2 Peter 1:16: For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty.
    • The Bible contains eyewitness accounts, prophecies that have been historically fulfilled.
    • Across stories, continents, languages, and time, it is unified and unifying.
  2. The Bible is authoritative
    • 2 Timothy 3:16-17: All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.
    • The Bible was written for you. It is dedicated to you! 
    • It is best for us to align ourselves with the authority of the Bible.
    • Hebrews 4:12-13: For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account.
  3. The purpose of the Bible is Jesus
    • John 5:39-40: You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me, yet you refuse to come to me that you may have life.
    • The Bible is communicated to us by the person of Jesus. He is the Word made flesh.

Read it and apply it. Let us be a people that hold firmly to the Word, believing in it whole-heartedly and declaring it as True.

Biblical references: 2 Peter 1:20-21, 2 Peter 1:16, 2 Timothy 3:16-17, Hebrews 4:12-13,John 5:39-40 

Questions:

  1. How can you this week dive deeper in the bible to receive the truth about who God says you are and who He is? Memorizing scripture verses, reading through the entire bible or just a book, spending 10 minutes a day reading the words of Jesus, etc?
  2. The bible was written and dedicated to you! What lies or pit falls get in the way of turning to scripture as a source of life and refreshment?
  3. What areas of your life need to be realigned to believe in the authority of the bible?