LIFE WITH JESUS
March 3 - April 14
As we begin the Lent season and look toward Easter, we are studying Jesus’ life and his journey to the cross. It is an invitation to walk with Jesus and encounter the unexpected with every turn. Be surprised and transformed by the power of a life with Jesus.
THE COST TO FOLLOW
March 3 | Adam Barnett
The invitation to follow Jesus and walk in life with Him is one that is transformative, but requires sacrifice. Adam Barnett opens our series on living life with Jesus by exploring this cost to follow and putting it in perspective with the cost that Christ paid.
THE COST TO FOLLOW
Life with Jesus | Week 1 | March 3, 2019
Luke 9:51-56 NIV
As the time approached for him to be taken up to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem. And he sent messengers on ahead, who went into a Samaritan village to get things ready for him; but the people there did not welcome him, because he was heading for Jerusalem. When the disciples James and John saw this, they asked, “Lord, do you want us to call fire down from heaven to destroy them?” But Jesus turned and rebuked them. Then he and his disciples went to another village.
Luke 9:57-58 NIV
As they were walking along the road, a man said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.”
Luke 9:59-60 NIV
He said to another man, “Follow me.” But he replied, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.” Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.”
The moment to say yes and follow Jesus is never tomorrow. The moment is always now.
Luke 9:61-62 NIV
Still another said, “I will follow you, Lord; but first let me go back and say goodbye to my family.” Jesus replied, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.”
Our service to the Kingdom of God must supersede all other commitments.
WHO IS MY NEIGHBOR?
March 10 | Bill Clark
Bill Clark continues our series about living Life with Jesus by sharing from the Parable of the Good Samaritan to illustrate Jesus’ call that love has no limits on who is our neighbor!
WHO IS MY NEIGHBOR?
Life with Jesus | Week 2 | March 10, 2019
Luke 10:25-37 NIV
On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
“What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”
He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”
“You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”
But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”
In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. The next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’
“Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?”
The expert in the law replied,“The one who had mercy on him.” Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.”
Luke 10:27 NIV
Love the Lord your God will all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind; and, Love your neighbor as yourself.
Love has no limits on who is our neighbor.
For followers of Jesus: Who isn’t your neighbor?
Just don’t pass them by.
March 17 | Denise McKinney
When His disciples ask Jesus to teach them how to pray, He answers by sharing three different points about prayer. Denise McKinney explores these points and how they impact the way we encounter Jesus and view God’s love for us.
Life with Jesus | Week 3 | March 17, 2019
Luke loves REVERSALS
Luke 11:1-13 NLT
Once Jesus was in a certain place praying. As he finished, one of his disciples came to him and said, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.” Jesus said, “This is how you should pray:
“Father, may your name be kept holy. May your Kingdom come soon. Give us each day the food we need, and forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us. And don’t let us yield to temptation.”
Then, teaching them more about prayer, he used this story: “Suppose you went to a friend’s house at midnight, wanting to borrow three loaves of bread. You say to him, ‘A friend of mine has just arrived for a visit, and I have nothing for him to eat.’ And suppose he calls out from his bedroom, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is locked for the night, and my family and I are all in bed. I can’t help you.’ But I tell you this—though he won’t do it for friendship’s sake, if you keep knocking long enough, he will get up and give you whatever you need because of your shameless persistence. And so I tell you, keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. You fathers—if your children ask for a fish, do you give them a snake instead? Or if they ask for an egg, do you give them a scorpion? Of course not! So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him.”
This is how we should pray: for what God wants.
Luke 11:2-4 MSG
Father, reveal who you are. Set the world right. Keep us alive with three square meals. Keep us forgiven with you and forgiving others. Keep us safe from ourselves and the Devil.
When we keep praying for what God wants: God gives us what we really need.
And when God gives us what we really need: We find our way.
GREED & WORRY
March 24 | Adam Barnett
Worry is part of the human condition. But Jesus tells us that we are to seek to trade that worry for absolute trust in God and His provision. Adam Barnett continues our series by challenging us to begin to trust in God today!
WORRY & GREED
Life with Jesus | Week 4 | March 24, 2019
My life has been filled with terrible misfortune; most of which never happened.
- Michel de Montaigne
Luke 12:22-34 NIV
Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?
Consider how the wild flowers grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you—you of little faith! And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them. But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well. Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will never fail, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Whatever God gives me, I steward well.
Greed and worry reveal our lack of trust in God and our lack of eternal perspective.
Am I stewarding my possessions in a God-honoring way?
Am I trusting myself more than I am trusting God?
Am I serving God’s Kingdom or building my own?
Am I suffering from chronic worry?
Worry is irreverent.
Worry is irrelevant.
Worry is irresponsible.
Worry is ignorant.
REPENT OR PERISH
March 31 | Adam Barnett
Paul tells us that "all have sinned and fall short of the Glory of God." and Jesus tells us that we must recognize our sin, turn to Him, and repent. But this is not a scary thing. Adam Barnett continues our series on Life with Jesus by encouraging and reminding us that God is not waiting to condemn us, but to welcome us with open arms.
REPENT OR PERISH
Life with Jesus | Week 5 | March 31, 2019
Life with Jesus is impossible without repentance.
A change of mind that results in a change of action.
Luke 13:1-5 NIV
Now there were some present at that time who told Jesus about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mixed with their sacrifices. Jesus answered, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans because they suffered this way? I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish. Or those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them—do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem? I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish.”
Luke 13:6-9 NIV
Then he told this parable: “A man had a fig tree growing in his vineyard, and he went to look for fruit on it but did not find any. So he said to the man who took care of the vineyard, ‘For three years now I’ve been coming to look for fruit on this fig tree and haven’t found any. Cut it down! Why should it use up the soil?’ ‘Sir,’ the man replied, ‘leave it alone for one more year, and I’ll dig around it and fertilize it. If it bears fruit next year, fine! If not, then cut it down.’ ”
Jesus’ ministry is a display of mercy in view of the coming judgment.
Jeremiah 12:17 NIV
“But if any nation will not listen, then I will completely uproot it and destroy it,” declares the LORD.
When we minimize the PROBLEM, we minimize the SOLUTION.
If SIN is not a big deal, neither is the CROSS.
Prayer of Confession:
O Christ my God, at the last day, we will all stand before your judgment seat. Now, drawn by your mercy and seeking your grace, I come before your presence. I bring before you my unrighteousness, my evil thoughts and deeds. Look on my heart, broken by guilt and humbled in your presence; my sins are more than I can count, and I pray for your mercy. I am your own, marked as yours in baptism and sealed with the Holy Spirit. Yet, I have not been true to your call or faithful in your service. O Lord, my wrongdoing and the weight of what I have not done overwhelms me, but I know that your mercies are endless, they are new every morning, and your compassion surpasses my understanding. Stretch forth your hand to me and receive me, as you welcomed the returning prodigal, the repentant thief, the woman who wept at your feet, and even Peter who had denied you. Where sin has abounded, let grace abound even more, that I may live and serve you now, and, at last, rejoice in the eternal kingdom where you, the ever-living Father and the gracious life-giving Spirit, reign for all eternity. Amen.
THE CHARACTER OF GOD
April 7 | Daniel Bunn
The parable of the persistent widow in Luke 18 is not a command to pester God until He gives in to our desires, but an exploration of the character of God. Daniel Bunn uses this text to remind us that God can and will bring justice to His people, whom He loves.
THE CHARACTER OF GOD
Life with Jesus | Week 6 | April 7, 2019
Luke 18:2 NIV
He said: “In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared what people thought.
Luke 18:3 NIV
And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’
Luke 18:4–5 NIV
For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care what people think, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually come and attack me!’”
Parables are told to address specific situations for specific audiences.
Luke 18:1 NIV
Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up.
We no longer believe that what we are doing is leading to the goal that we desired in the first place.
The lesson is persistence: don’t give up.
Luke 18:6–8 NIV
And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?”
The parable is not about persistence; it’s about the character of God.
Faithful prayer is not so much about what or how we pray; it’s about knowing the one to whom we pray.
THE STONES WILL CRY OUT
April 14 | Adam Barnett
The people of Jerusalem expected their prophesied and long-awaited king to enter into the city as a conquering general complete with an impressive display. But Jesus did not come to fulfill expectations, but more often than not to subvert them. Adam Barnett explores the way Jesus entered Jerusalem and how we are to respond.
THE STONES WILL CRY OUT
Life with Jesus | Week 7 | April 14, 2019
Luke 19:28-34 NIV
After Jesus had said this, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem. As he approached Bethphage and Bethany at the hill called the Mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples, saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and as you enter it, you will find a colt tied there, which no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it here. If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you untying it?’ say, ‘The Lord needs it.’” Those who were sent ahead went and found it just as he had told them. As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them, “Why are you untying the colt?” They replied, “The Lord needs it.”
Zechariah 9:9 NIV
Rejoice greatly, Daughter Zion! Shout, Daughter Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you, righteous and victorious, lowly and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.
As the ambassador of the ultimate Kingdom, the Prince of Peace came not to conquer men, but sin.
Luke 19:35-38 NIV
They brought it to Jesus, threw their cloaks on the colt and put Jesus on it. As he went along, people spread their cloaks on the road. When he came near the place where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen: “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!”
Jesus didn’t come to claim kingship of the throne, but kingship of hearts and minds.
Luke 19:39 NIV
Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples!”
Luke 19:40 NIV
“I tell you,” he replied, “if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.”
Jesus will receive the praise He is due!
THE WEEKEND THAT CHANGED THE WORLD
EASTER | April 21 | Bill Clark
On Easter Sunday, we celebrate not just the humble Jesus, but the powerful, victorious Jesus. In humility, he went to the cross to pay the price for our sins. But in power, he was resurrected and was victorious over death. Bill Clark shares how Jesus will always be both the humble and powerful Jesus; the Resurrected King who reigns.
THE WEEKEND THAT CHANGED THE WORLD
Easter 2019 | April 14, 2019 | Bill Clark
Revelation 1:12-15,17-18 NIV
I turned around to see the voice that was speaking to me. And when I turned I saw seven golden lampstands, and among the lampstands was someone ‘like a son of man,’ dressed in a robe reaching down to his feet and with a golden sash around his chest. His head and his hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and his eyes were like blazing fire. His feet were like bronze glowing in a furnace, and his voice was like the sound of rushing waters...and he said: “Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last. I am the living One; I was dead, and behold I am alive for ever and ever!”