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Archive for the ‘Scriptures – Reading/Study’ Category

The Bible is not an antique to be protected but a feast to be enjoyed and consumed.

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Here’s the workbook I mentioned during yesterday’s gathering on ‘Reading God’s Story.’ I’d encourage you to work through it with your family, your community group or your Fight Club.

Reading God’s Story

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‘And this is why the Jews were persecuting Jesus, because he was doing these things on the Sabbath.’ (John 5:16)

What do I do in the name of Christianity that inflicts damage on Christ and his body, the Church?

Jesus exposes the parts of life that I call Christianity that are nothing more than self-empowered, self-righteous husks – and he does it by working in places, people and ways that I simply don’t like and would never approve.

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‘But Moses fled…’ (Exodus 2:15)

Great men are shaped by great pain brought on by a great God for His great name.

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Bear fruits in keeping with repentance…(Luke 3:8)

Churches and movements which have recovered and cling to the gospel as the center of their lives run the risk of misusing and abusing the gospel. Once we understand that God exposes our sin and sinfulness not as an attempt to motivate us to try harder but to press into Jesus as our hope, we open ourselves up to believing that no further response is necessary. We rightly believe that because of Jesus, God will perfectly love us forever even if we never get better. But our failure to engage in the hard work of digging into the morass of the motivational structure of our hearts in order to apply the gospel to the sinfulness beneath our sin turns the gospel into a shiny veneer laid over the top of an increasingly hardened heart.

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So the post beneath this one isn’t entirely true – Christ Church does exist to make disciples by equipping people to live as missionaries in community empowered by the gospel.

But…

Discipleship is not the goal of our existence, simply the means. We’re here to do discipleship but there’s a reason why we want to teach and train and coach people to follow Jesus.

Think about it this way – take discipleship and lay Romans 11:36 on top of it. Now read it back to me:

[Discipleship is] is from God and through God and to God. To him be glory forever. Amen.

Discipleship matters because it declares and displays an all-satisfying, infinitely valuable God.

We follow Jesus for the glory of Jesus.

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We wrapped up the Money series last week (still blown away by the response and can’t wait to see what God creates in us and through us over the next few weeks, months, years, decades…) and we don’t start the Love and Marriage series until next Sunday.

So…

I’m going to teach on a fairly well-known text that I’ve never taught before.

And you won’t ever read this text the same way again.

Which means that your mind is going to be blown, your heart is going to melt and your life is going to change.

Matthew 28:16-20.

Read it. Journal about it. Pray over it. Invite friends to come with you on Sunday as we experience it together.

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