Posts Tagged ‘Jesus’

Why Do I Need the Church?

Posted: December 11, 2019 by keystoneyouth in Church Matters
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Attention Funnel: Church Signs

 Introduction:

  • There are things people tell me I need, that I don’t really think I need.
    • People tell me I need to get the Flu shot. But I hate needles and my Immune System is an absolute monster.
    • People tell me I need to try essential oils. But I don’t see the point.
    • Dentists tell me I need to floss more, but who really has time for that?
  • There are lots of things people might say that we need, that we don’t really need.
  • Isn’t church just another one of those things that some people say I need… but in reality, I don’t need it?
    • Why can’t church just be optional?
    • Like why can’t I just read my Bible, pray each night before bed, listen to Hillsong every morning, occasionally throw on a Steven Furtick Sermon, and get on with my life?
    • Wouldn’t it have been a better use of your time to stay home this morning or tonight and listen to a Matt Chandler or John Piper sermon?
  • Obviously, you know what my answer is going to be to these questions. But I want to make the case from the Bible tonight of why you need a local church and why it shouldn’t be viewed as an optional add-on to your Christianity.

 Big Idea: You can’t have Jesus without the church. (more…)

Why Should I Care About the Church?

Posted: December 11, 2019 by keystoneyouth in Church Matters
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Why Should I Care About the Church?

 Attention Funnel: Church Hunters

 Introduction:

  • Why a series on the church?
    • 1) Because church is often misunderstood… we either think church is optional… i.e. I love Jesus, but I don’t like the church… or we think of church in me-centered ways. What does this church have to offer me? How does it meet my needs? How does it match up with my preferences?
    • 2) Because church is often maligned… whether it is seen as hindering progress, judgmental, full of hypocrites, or a place where people have everything together and just plaster fake smiles on, church is often maligned.
      • Now, don’t get me wrong… the church has been guilty of doing some awful things… like the crusades, more recent abuse scandals, or committing acts of hate in Jesus’ name. And we need to be honest about these things and not paper over them… we’ll talk more about this in an upcoming lesson. But I also put it out there as small group question tonight.
    • 3) Because I want to see teenagers who understand what the church is and love the church.
  • I wonder how many of you have stopped to ask, “Why do I come to church?” Or to put it a different way, I wonder how you would respond if tomorrow your parents told you, you don’t have to go to church anymore and we’re not going to go anymore either.
    • I know how I would have responded to both of those questions in High school:
      • 1) I went to church because I have to. It’s just part of our Sunday routine… we go to church, watch football, and make soft pretzels… church is the just awkward, boring part we have to get out of the way so we can’t to the good stuff.
      • 2) If my parents told me I didn’t have to go to church anymore, I would’ve said, “Jackpot! I can sleep in Sunday mornings!”
      • I really didn’t understand the importance of church or what it was all about, and if I’m honest, I didn’t really care to.
      • If you are in those shoes, let me say just one thing up front… as I look back, I’m incredibly thankful that my parents forced me to go to church even when I didn’t want to. Because it was far better for me to do something I didn’t want to and be exposed to Christians of all ages, singing, and the bible being preached even as I didn’t pay attention, then it would have been for me to get my own way and do what I wanted on Sunday Mornings.
    • This series is meant to help you see the importance, purpose, and beauty of the church.
    • Now, before we go any further, I need to clarify what I mean by church.
      • The word church in the bible refers to the people of God. And so in one sense we can say the church is the people of God at all places in all times (in other words, everyone who has repented of their sin and trusted in Jesus).
      • But the word church also refers to a specific gathering of God’s people… I.E. the local church.
      • So when Paul writes to Corinthians he refers to a specific gathering of Christians as the church.
      • This is mainly how I will use this word during this series… to refer to the local church, a specific group of God’s people.
    • Over the next 6 weeks we will ask 6 questions about the church. And we will mainly be answering these questions from Ephesians, because that’s a book where Paul has a lot to say about the church.
    • Tonight, we start with: Why Should I Care About the Church?

Passages: Ephesians 2:19; 5:22-30

 Big Idea: If we love Jesus, we should love the Church.

  • My goal in this lesson is to give you two reasons why we should care about the church and then give you a challenge of what that should mean for us.

(more…)

Act Like A Man

Posted: March 21, 2018 by keystoneyouth in God's Greatest Invention
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Attention Funnel: Word Association – Fast Food, Genius, Huge, Ocean, Love, Failure, Basketball, Man (Videos of male stereotypes)

Introduction:

  • Refresh Last Week – 1) EVERY Human has equal dignity and value. 2) Men and women have a specific role to play. 3)God’s design is what’s best for us. 4) Jesus came to restore broken people.
  • Tonight, and next week we are going to talk about men… and no ladies this doesn’t just mean that you can tune out. I’ll tell you why in a second.
  • What do you think about when you think about what it means to be a man?
    • What picture comes into your mind when you think about what a man is? What attributes come into mind when you think about what it means to be a man?
  • Guys – How you define what it means to be a man will shape what you pursue after.
    • What is your idea of a vacation? There’s two types of vacationers… The first type is the sit, eat, and just relax type. In other words, consume over 5,000 calories and don’t take more than 10 steps each day. The second type is the always has to be doing something type. Waking up at 5:00 in the morning to run, then playing a game of risk, going jet skiing, and catching a lobster all before 10:00am.
    • How you define a vacation will affect what you pursue on your vacation… peace and quiet or activity and experiences.
  • Girls – How you define what it means to be a man will shape what you expect from men and encourage in them.

Big Idea: How we define what it means to be a man will shape what guys pursue and what girls expect.

Passages: Genesis 2; Romans 5; Ephesians 5

Main Points

  • Men are given a unique responsibility… to lead, to provide, and to protect.
  • Jesus is the model man.
  • Being a man is all about gladly sacrificing for others

(more…)

 

Attention Funnel:

  • Dream Life: If I told you that you could have the life of your dreams? Live anywhere, with anyone, do anything, have anything, be anybody… what would your life look like?
  • Real Life: Craig Sager Speech at the ESPYs

 Introduction:

  • There are two ways for us to enjoy life. We can think that when we get to the future and have achieved the life of our dreams, then we will finally enjoy life.
  • Or we can see the life we have right here and now as a gift from God and start to enjoy every moment of it.
  • I think too many of us fail to enjoy life in the present because we are so focused on a future life that we are sure will be more enjoyable.
  • In our passage tonight, Solomon is going to urge us to enjoy the life we have right now… and he’s going to do that in a rather odd way, by telling us to stare death right between the eyes.
  • He’s going to tell us, a tornado is headed straight for your house (and our response is to bunker down, board up the windows, prepare for the worst), and instead he says, so go outside and play while the sun is still shining.

 Passage: Ecclesiastes 9:1-12 

Big Idea: Enjoy the life you have, not the one you dream of. 

Main Points:

  • Death is the only guarantee in this life.
  • Death is a good teacher.
  • Enjoy the life God has given you.
  • Hope: Jesus has defeated death.

(more…)

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Champions or Chumps?

 Attention Funnel: Getting a Bad Gift/ Famous People who have Died

 Introduction:

  • People rise and fall… and then they are forgotten.
  • Even some of the most popular people are often soon forgotten after their death.
  • If Jesus was exactly like these people then we should feel and even act like those kids on Christmas morning.
  • We have been duped… given a false hope… told that we were getting a great gift, only to open it up and find… pickles.
  • But if Jesus is not exactly like these people… if he really is risen from the dead… then this truth should lead to changed lives and an incredible hope and confidence.

 Big Idea: Jesus’ resurrection gives us great confidence both now and in the future.

I want to cover two main things tonight:

  • First of all, how can we know the resurrection happened.
  • Second of all, why does it matter for our lives.

Main Points:

  • Jesus’ death is a comma, not a period.
  • Jesus’ resurrection is the hinge on which Christianity hangs.
  • The resurrection means we are winners in Jesus.

(more…)

The Great Exchange

Posted: April 28, 2017 by keystoneyouth in Three Days Lessons
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The Great Exchange

Attention Funnel: Videos of Instant Karma

Introduction:

  • We love justice.
    • And yet our sense of justice is almost always skewed.
  • We love to see other people receive bad when we feel like they deserve it.
    • If someone cuts someone else off on the road… it feels good to see them get cut off.
    • If someone cuts in front of the line, it feels good to have someone intervene and send them to the back of the line.
    • If someone makes fun of you, it feels good to see them get torn down.
  • And on the flip side, we balk when we feel like we don’t get something good that we deserve.
    • If an older brother or sister received a phone when they were 12 years old, but you were told you would have to wait until you were 16, you would flip out.
    • If your friends are all invited to a party, but you aren’t invited, you sulk, get angry, and plot how to get back at the person who did the inviting.
    • If I gave half of you candy, the other half of you would balk at the fact that you did not also receive any candy.
  • We have this intrinsic sense that is quick to be happy when bad things happen to people that “deserve” them, while also feeling that we only deserve good things and get upset when we don’t get them.
  • The cross teaches us that we actually deserve that bad that we so often reserve for “other” people and yet we receive good that we don’t deserve because Jesus took on the bad that we deserve.

Big Idea: Jesus got what we deserved so we get what we don’t deserve.

 Main Points:

  • On the cross, Jesus gets what he doesn’t deserve.
  • On the cross, Jesus gets what we do deserve.
  • Because of the cross, we get what we don’t deserve.

(more…)

For Such A Time As This

Posted: November 29, 2016 by keystoneyouth in Esther Lessons
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Attention Funnel: Opposites Game

Introduction:

  • Two things that often seem to be opposite are God’s sovereignty and our action.
  • God’s sovereignty means that he is in control of everything that happens. He has directed history to the exact place that we are ate right now. Nothing has happened that he did not plan and purpose to happen.
  • Currently he is directing every detail according to his will, nothing happens that is outside of his control.
  • And he knows all that will happen in the future because he has planned for it to happen already and he has the power to make it happen.
  • Verses: Ephesians 1:11; Proverbs 19:21; Isaiah 44:7; 64:8.
  • It’s easy to respond to this by saying, “Well then it doesn’t matter what I do. If God is entirely in control, if he has worked out history, is guiding the present, and already planned out the future… then why does it matter what I do?”
  • Like going to a restaurant where they give you a menu and there’s only one choice – “Do you want the roast beef or the roast beef?” You don’t have any choice. This is how we can often paint God’s sovereignty and our action… it’s one or the other, but they can’t go together.
  • But Esther Chapter 4 and 5 show us something different

Big Idea: Faith in God’s sovereignty leads to action.

  • Set the Stage for where we are.
    • Persia – Most powerful empire in the World.
    • Xerxes – The current King who is self-centered and over-indulgent.
    • Esther – Has risen to become queen through an immoral situation.
    • Mordecai – Esther’s cousin and adoptive father who is also in a position of power.
    • Haman – The second most powerful man in the Empire – Mordecai disrespects and refuses to show him honor and Haman responds by coming up with a plan to kill all the Jews in Persia.

 Passage: Esther 4-5:8

Main Points

  • Theology is more than just head knowledge.
  • You are where you are because God wants you there.
  • Faith translates to risky obedience.
  • Jesus took the ultimate step of risky obedience for us.

(more…)