Steve Thomas. In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus challenges both the ways of legalism and "I'm just going to do my own thing". While upholding the purpose of scripture, Jesus brings us back to the essential of relationship: loving God and loving others. In following Jesus model, we are indeed salt and light.
Brandon Cook. The Sermon on the Mount is a roadmap to life in the Kingdom of God, an invitation to be transformed. In this message, we examine Jesus’ statement that he came not to abolish but to fulfill the Law given to Israel, opening up the pathway to transformation. Using M. Scott Peck’s description of spiritual growth in four stages, we analyze Jesus’ statement to see how Jesus calls us out of mere law-keeping or performance and into a life deeply grounded in the love and generosity of God.
Ryan Longnecker. In the intro to our series 'Sermon on the Mount' we look at one of the most famous passages in Scripture, the Beatitudes. Jesus reminds us of God's promises to care for, defend, and comfort His people while also showing those who experience pain, persecution, and struggle might be closer to the Kingdom than they realize.
John 1:10-13 and Romans 8:26-30
Brandon Cook. In biblical teaching and Christian thought, abundance is synonymous with maturity. In this message, we explore what it means to become mature as we trust that God’s universe will provide everything we need for the formation of our souls so that we can welcome all reality, the joyous and painful, trusting that God “works all things together for our good.” This maturity will mean leaving behind our strongholds (the things that have helped us survive) so that we can learn to thrive in new ways of being with God, others, and in the world.
2 Corinthians 8:1-3,7-8,12-15, 9:6-11a
Barbara Sunofsky. What if abundance has nothing to do with how much or how little money we have? Money is a reality in all of our relationships, past, present, and future. We consider how we feel when we have or do not have money, and how we steward its power in our relationships. Giving money away is a spiritual discipline that we practice because of our knowledge of Christ's abundance. As a community, we engage in spiritual formation to make a commitment to give all we readily and easily can, and beyond.
1 John 4:7-12
Jaci Anderson. The opposite of abundance is not scarcity, but isolation. Through relationships, we tap into the abundance God has for us in our families, city, and world. We learn from Africa New Day's Pastor Andre, and World Vision Clean Water projects, that relationships that give capacity, instead of create dependence, are essential to abundance. We contemplate: Who has God used and given you to access his abundance?
Brandon Cook. In August, we focus on our discipleship value of abundance, which comes from a life of listening and responding. In this first message, we explore how all abundance flows from a life of obedience to God’s Spirit. This obedience has nothing to do with compulsion and everything to do with connection. And it means a pruning of our small self so we can live from a big story involving risk, romance, and adventure.
Brandon Cook. How do you know that you are mature? That you are an adult? In this message, we explore the dynamics of giving, which is a core marker of maturity. And we explore what gets in our way of giving, preventing us from rising up into the full measure of maturity in Christ.
Philippians 3: 1-14
Brandon Cook. Paul says that his old identity—based on his ethnicity and pedigree and accomplishments—is worth nothing in comparison to what Christ has done to bring us into the family of God. And then he says that to live fully into this reality of new life in God’s family, we must forget the past and strive to what is ahead. In this message, we explore some of the dynamics involved in “forgetting what is behind” so that we can be fully held by God, moment to moment.
Steve Thomas. The call in Philippians 2 is to be like Jesus—to learn to live and love like him by honoring each other. In this message, we explore the simple command to do what Jesus did, loving each other, even when it costs us something.