Posts Tagged ‘Suffering’

Where is God?

Posted: November 15, 2016 by keystoneyouth in Esther Lessons
Tags: , , , , , ,

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Attention Funnel: Where’s Waldo?

Series Introduction: Esther: When God is Silent

  • What do you know about the story of Esther?
    • God is never mentioned.
    • It takes place in Persia during the reign of Xerxes
    • There are 4 main Characters (King Xerxes(Ahasuerus), Esther, Mordecai, and Haman)
    • It’s a bit like Where’s Waldo? God seems to be absent, and yet God is hidden in the story and once we see him we can’t believe that we missed him all along.
    • The author uses things like coincidences, sudden reversals, and irony to help us see how God’s hand is at work even as his name is not mentioned.

Big Idea: God NEVER abandons His people.

Passage: Esther 1 and 3

Main Points:

  • God often seems distant or absent.
  • Your life will not go as planned and expected.
  • God is in control of every circumstance.
  • The cross is God’s exclamation point of faithfulness!

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EXILE Lesson #4: Happiness

Posted: November 12, 2015 by keystoneyouth in EXILE Lessons
Tags: , , , , , ,

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Introduction:

  • Everyone wants to be happy
  • One of the greatest feelings on this earth is the feeling of happiness.
  • There’s not much better than happiness?
  • Think about the best day you had in the past couple weeks… I would guess it was a good day because you were happy most of the day.
    • Your hair was done just right.
    • Everybody was laughing at your jokes.
    • You got back that Math Test that you thought you did terrible on only to find out that you got a 97 on it!
    • That girl who you secretly have a crush on smiled at you… TWICE!
    • You hit a buzzer beater in overtime at your basketball game… and guess who was watching… that girl you have a crush on… guess who just got a 3rd smile… you did.
    • Your parents tell you your allowed to stay out an hour past curfew because you killed it on your math test.
    • Then your driving home and your song comes on… your belting out Bad Blood as you pull into the driveway.
    • You walk inside and open the Freezer only to find DOUBLE DUNKER Ice Cream
    • #Blessed #Bestdayever #nofilter #3smilesinoneday
  • Maybe you’ve had a day like that recently.
  • But here’s the problem… usually for every great day we have like that… there’s also the reverse… a terrible, horrible, no good day. Where everything that can go wrong does go wrong… #shedidntevennoticemetoday
  • See in this world happiness often revolves around our circumstances… when things go well we’re happy and when things go bad we’re unhappy.
  • Which presents a problem for exiles… if happiness is rooted in circumstances… then exiles better prepare for a life of a lot of unhappiness.
  • Why?? Because circumstances for exiles are rarely ideal.
  • This morning, I want to show you that happiness, or joy as I’ll refer to it from here on out, does not need to be rooted in circumstances.
  • And I’ll argue that exiles actually have a joy that can’t be broken.

 Big Idea: Exiles have a joy that cannot be broken.

 Passage: 1 Peter 1:1-12: 4:12-16

 Main Points:

  • Christian joy is rooted in a future reward.
  • Christian joy is Christ-centered.
  • Christian joy is confounding.

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Attention Funnel:

  • Best Boat Videos/ Magic Video

 Introduction:

  • We left Jonah last week on a boat, and that’s where we pick him up this week.
  • He has rejected God’s call to go preach to Ninevah and instead has made his way to a boat to head for Tarshish.

Big Idea: There’s more to sin and grace then meets the eye.

  • Like an illusion

Passage: Jonah 1:1-16

Main Points

  • Sin has a downward drag.
  • God’s anger links arms with his grace.
  • Storms can be idol crushers.
  • Hope: Jesus is the true and better Jonah

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 Attention Funnel: Insurance Commercials – We buy insurance because bad things happen.

 Introduction: Bad things happen in this life. We all know this, there are things that happen that cause pain and suffering in our lives or in the lives of others. This issue of suffering and evil in our world is one of the biggest arguments against God’s existence. It’s a problem.

Big Idea: The existence of suffering does not mean that God is unloving or weak.

Scripture: Romans 8:18-39; Revelation 21:1-4

Main Points:
Christianity provides a framework for understanding evil and suffering.
Christianity tells us that God suffered for us.
Christianity offers real comfort to those who are suffering. (more…)

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Series Explanation:

  • 3 Reasons for the Title
    • 1) Scripture – We are looking at Exodus 1-4 – primarily the events at the burning bush
    • 2) We can control what’s in a box fairly easily. We cannot control fire very easily.
    • 3) Fire is mysterious. We know what we need to start and fire and we know the chemical reactions that cause fire – but it is still mysterious
  • Scripture – Out of the Box and Into the Fire is a series in which we are going to look at the first four chapters of Exodus, specifically the events surrounding the burning bush. We have historically named this story, “Moses and the Burning Bush.” This describes the event well, but it doesn’t really tell us what story is about. The story is not primarily about Moses or the bush, rather, it is about God calling Moses to save the Israelites AND revealing himself in some amazing ways.
  • Control: We are not able to control God. We cannot fit him neatly in a box of propositions and say that we know him. A god who is wrapped up in a box is an idol, not God.
  • Mystery – Out of the Box and Into the Fire is a series that is meant to look at how God is bigger then we can comprehend or imagine. We can know him through the Bible and what it tells us about him, but we can never fully know him, or even fully comprehend all that he tells us about himself through the Bible.
  • E. In some ways it is like looking into a night sky. We can comprehend something of the universe we live in. We can see stars, a moon, and massive blackness.   We understand that the universe is much bigger than we can fully understand. Yet we love to look into the sky and imagine where it ends. Even if we a cosmologist and study the universe in great detail, there will still be a limit to our understanding.

Lesson #1: The God who Rules

Purpose: To look at how God reveals himself in the first four chapters of Exodus. To show that God is far greater than our minds can comprehend and to combat the desire that we have to fit God into a neat box.

Big Idea: God rules over all that happens in this world…even if we can’t see it.

Passage: Exodus 1

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For my latest lesson, I alluded to a list of verses compiled to highlight God’s power over his creation.  The following verses descend into ever deepening and controversial areas:  1 & 2 relate to God’s dealings in creation, 3 & 4 relate to God’s dealings in humanity, and 5 & 6 relate to God’s dealings in suffering.

Examples of the Sovereignty of God
(Assembled by Keith Rohrer & Amended by Brandon Fisher)

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Greatest Hits—The Best of Keystone Youth Ministry

Week #4

4.14 & 4.16.14

 

Purpose:  Replay the essentials of Keystone Youth Ministry.

 

Week 4:  Sovereign Hand—The Power of God over All Things

  • Purpose:  Provide the grit to stand firm in the face of suffering.
  • Main Points:

o   There are no maverick molecules.

o   There are no deviant decisions.

o   God accomplishes indescribable good from spectacular sins.

  • Hope:  Nothing thwarts God’s plans.

Extras:

  • Verses Highlighting the Sovereignty of God:  Sovereign Love verses
  • Blog–When God’s Sovereignty Scares You:  http://thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/tgc/2014/04/28/when-gods-sovereignty-scares-you/

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