Aug 4, 2020
Living as a Christian in a World of Confusion – Deric Bartlett
Series: Reset 2020

1. Keep your shoes on (v. 21-22)

2. Keep your shield up (v. 23-27)

3. Keep your ego in check (v. 26-28)

4. Keep your mind clear (v. 28-34)

5. Keep your faith focused (v.35-41)

ICEBREAKER:

What do you highly recommend to most people you meet?

1. The early Christian movement was called “The Way” by Luke, the writer of Acts [cf. Acts 9:2; 18:25-26; 19:23; 22:4; 24:14, 22]. Where do you think this phrase originated, and what does it say about the nature of the Christian faith [cf. John 14:6; Romans 13:11-14; and Philippians 3:17-21]?

2. Paul was accused by his opponents of “persuading” and “turning away” many people from the old pagan superstitions. What do you learn about Paul’s methods that help you share Christ today [cf. Acts 14:15-17; Acts 17:22-32; and 1 Peter 3:13-16]?

3. Paul’s message to the pagan world of his day was that idols were not gods at all [Acts 19:26]. Is idolatry still present today? What would qualify as idolatry in our current culture? How would you address it? Consider Isaiah 44:9-20; 1 Corinthians 8:1-6; and 1 Corinthians 10:14-22 in your response.

4. The two accusations levelled at Paul by his adversaries dealt with loss of income and loss of honour for their goddess, Artemis. This revealed an underlying cosmic conflict between deities alongside an economic conflict. Is this also true today [cf. Deuteronomy 6:4; Ephesians 4:4-6; and 1 Timothy 2:5-6]?

5. Acts 19:28-29, 32, 34 describe a scene that is moment by moment played out in modern times on social media, with outrage, virtue signalling, and mass confusion rampant. How might a follower of Jesus bring calm to an out-of-control situation? Consult also Galatians 5:22-23; Ephesians 5:15-20; and 2 Peter 1:5-7 for more insights.

6. Acts 19:35 recorded the Ephesian superstitious belief in a stone that fell from heaven, giving rise to the pagan cult of Artemis. What superstitions persist today, and how can believers counter them [cf. Psalm 19:1-6; Acts 14:11-17; and Romans 1:18-23]?

7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?

“The essence of idolatry is the entertainment of thoughts about God that are unworthy of Him.” (A. W. Tozer)

WatchNotesDownloadDateTitle
  • Aug 4, 2020Living as a Christian in a World of Confusion – Deric Bartlett
    Aug 4, 2020
    Living as a Christian in a World of Confusion – Deric Bartlett
    Series: Reset 2020

    1. Keep your shoes on (v. 21-22)

    2. Keep your shield up (v. 23-27)

    3. Keep your ego in check (v. 26-28)

    4. Keep your mind clear (v. 28-34)

    5. Keep your faith focused (v.35-41)

    ICEBREAKER:

    What do you highly recommend to most people you meet?

    1. The early Christian movement was called “The Way” by Luke, the writer of Acts [cf. Acts 9:2; 18:25-26; 19:23; 22:4; 24:14, 22]. Where do you think this phrase originated, and what does it say about the nature of the Christian faith [cf. John 14:6; Romans 13:11-14; and Philippians 3:17-21]?

    2. Paul was accused by his opponents of “persuading” and “turning away” many people from the old pagan superstitions. What do you learn about Paul’s methods that help you share Christ today [cf. Acts 14:15-17; Acts 17:22-32; and 1 Peter 3:13-16]?

    3. Paul’s message to the pagan world of his day was that idols were not gods at all [Acts 19:26]. Is idolatry still present today? What would qualify as idolatry in our current culture? How would you address it? Consider Isaiah 44:9-20; 1 Corinthians 8:1-6; and 1 Corinthians 10:14-22 in your response.

    4. The two accusations levelled at Paul by his adversaries dealt with loss of income and loss of honour for their goddess, Artemis. This revealed an underlying cosmic conflict between deities alongside an economic conflict. Is this also true today [cf. Deuteronomy 6:4; Ephesians 4:4-6; and 1 Timothy 2:5-6]?

    5. Acts 19:28-29, 32, 34 describe a scene that is moment by moment played out in modern times on social media, with outrage, virtue signalling, and mass confusion rampant. How might a follower of Jesus bring calm to an out-of-control situation? Consult also Galatians 5:22-23; Ephesians 5:15-20; and 2 Peter 1:5-7 for more insights.

    6. Acts 19:35 recorded the Ephesian superstitious belief in a stone that fell from heaven, giving rise to the pagan cult of Artemis. What superstitions persist today, and how can believers counter them [cf. Psalm 19:1-6; Acts 14:11-17; and Romans 1:18-23]?

    7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?

    “The essence of idolatry is the entertainment of thoughts about God that are unworthy of Him.” (A. W. Tozer)

  • Jul 26, 2020The Riots in Ephesus – Deric Bartlett
    Jul 26, 2020
    The Riots in Ephesus – Deric Bartlett
    Series: Reset 2020

    This week, Pastor Deric continues the series 'Reset 2020' with a message titled 'The Riots in Ephesus" from Acts 19.

     

    1. The danger of _________________________ Christianity: v. 1-12

     

    1. The danger of _________________________ Christianity: v. 13-20

     

    1. The danger of __________________________ Christianity: v. 21-41

     

    QUESTIONS

    ICEBREAKER: What is your favourite type of day (weather, temperature, etc.)?

     

    1. The Holy Spirit is indispensable for a Christian’s identity and ministry [Acts 19:1-7]. What is the Holy Spirit’s role in the Christian life according to this text, as well as Acts 2:38; 1 Corinthians 12:13; 2 Corinthians 1:21-22; and Ephesians 1:13-14?

     

    1. What principles of mission do you see illustrated in Paul’s gospel activities in Acts 19:8-10? Why is the message “about the kingdom of God” still so critical to our presentation of the gospel today [cf. Acts 17:17; Acts 28:23, 31; and 2 Corinthians 5:11-15]?

     

    1. What do you learn from the contrasts between God’s unlimited power, demonic limited power, and the powerlessness of the 7 sons of Sceva as highlighted in Acts 19:11-20? Consult also Luke 8:26-31; Acts 16:16-18; and James 2:19 for further insights.

     

    1. How did the gospel transform the Ephesian society [Acts 19:17-20, 23-27]? What does this teach us about how to best transform our current godless culture? Consider also Matthew 5:13-16; Philippians 1:12-14; and Colossians 4:5-6.

     

    1. Riots, mobs, political upheavals, and social unrest are nothing new [Acts 19:28-34]. What prompted this particular riot? Was it justifi ed? What were the real reasons for the disturbance that are eerily similar to much of what we see in the news today [cf. Acts 17:5-9; Romans 1:28-32; and Galatians 5:19-21]?

     

    1. The unnamed town clerk of Ephesus needs to be commended for his courage and common sense in addressing the unruly crowd [Acts 19:35-41]. What did he appeal to in order to diffuse this volatile situation? What is a better way to resolve human disagreements [cf. Matthew 18:15-17; 1 Corinthians 6:1-8; 2 Timothy 2:23-26; and James 1:19-20]?

     

    1. What did you fi nd helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?

     

    “What makes life worthwhile is having a big enough objective, something which catches our imagination and lays hold of our allegiance, and this the Christian has in a way that no other person has. For what higher, more exalted, and more compelling goal can there be than to know God?” (J.I. Packer, Knowing God)

  • Jul 19, 2020Resetting Your Priorities (in light of Biblical Prophecy) Pt 2 – Deric Bartlett
    Jul 19, 2020
    Resetting Your Priorities (in light of Biblical Prophecy) Pt 2 – Deric Bartlett
    Series: Reset 2020
    This week, Pastor Deric continues the series 'Reset 2020' with part 2 of a message titled 'Resetting Your Priorities (in light of Biblical Prophecy)" based on 2 Peter 3.
     
    SATURATE (your mind with God’s Word) (v. 1-7) SHARE (the good news with all who will listen) v. 8-10 SEPARATE (yourself for the Lord) v. 11ff STRETCH (yourself in grace & knowledge) v. 15-18
     
    ICEBREAKER:
     
    What’s the biggest vehicle you’ve driven?
     
    1. Peter reminded his readers of the authoritative nature of God’s Word through the prophets and apostles [2 Peter 3:1-2]. What are some of the benefi ts of prioritizing the Bible? How much time and energy are you personally putting into studying and obeying it [cf. John 14:26; Acts 3:17-26; and Ephesians 2:19-22]?
     
    2. Skeptics have always scoffed at the supernatural [2 Peter 3:3-4]. How do you keep skepticism from infecting your faith in the promises of God [cf. Jeremiah 5:10-13; Matthew 24:48-51; and 1 Timothy 4:1-5]?
     
    3. Peter countered the skeptics by reviewing the Genesis accounts of creation and the fl ood [2 Peter 3:5-6]. How do these historical events rebuke the anti-supernatural claims of skeptics [cf. Genesis 1:9-10; Hebrews 11:3; and 2 Peter 2:5]?
     
    4. Peter informed his readers that everything in existence will be burned with fire on the day of judgment [2 Peter 3:7, 10, 12]. If this is true, what should we prioritize: the material, earthly, temporal things of this world, or the spiritual, heavenly, eternal things of the world to come? How do we do this? Consult also Matthew 6:19-21; Luke 12:13-21; and Colossians 3:1-4.
     
    5. Two reasons are given in 2 Peter 3:8-9 for the perceived delay in Christ’s return. What are these 2 reasons, and what do they reveal about God’s character and heart for people [cf. Ezekiel 18:30-32; Romans 2:1-11; and 1 Timothy 2:3-7]?
     
    6. In light of the certain coming judgment of God at Christ’s promised return [2 Peter 3:14-18], how are believers to live? Consider also Philippians 2:14-16; 1 Thessalonians 5:23; and 1 Timothy 6:11-16.
     
    7. What did you fi nd helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?
     
    “The ways, and fashions, and amusements, and recreations of the world have a continually decreasing place in the heart of a growing Christian. He does not condemn them as downright sinful, nor say that those who have anything to do with them are going to hell. He only feels they have a constantly diminishing hold on his own affections and gradually seem smaller and more trifl ing in his eyes.” (J. C. Ryle)
  • Jul 12, 2020Resetting Your Priorities (in light of Biblical Prophecy) – Deric Bartlett
    Jul 12, 2020
    Resetting Your Priorities (in light of Biblical Prophecy) – Deric Bartlett
    Series: Reset 2020
    This week, Pastor Deric continues the series 'Reset 2020' with a messaged titled 'Resetting Your Priorities (in light of Biblical Prophecy)' based on 2 Peter 3.

    The Bible is clear that we are living in “the last days” (v. 3)
    The Bible is clear that there is a coming “day of judgment” (v.7)
    The Bible is clear that the “day of the Lord” will come like a “thief in the night” (v.10)
    The Bible is clear that the world as we know it will end with “the day of God” (v.12)

    ICEBREAKER:

    What is something that was once important to you but is now becoming less and less relevant?

    1. In Acts 2:16-21, Peter referred to an Old Testament prophecy. According to Joel 2:28-32, what is to be expected “in the last days”? What happened on the Day of Pentecost that indicated a new day had dawned [cf. Isaiah 44:3-5; Ezekiel 36:26-27; and Acts 10:44-46]?

    2. The description of the last days by Paul in 2 Timothy 3:1-5 accurately reflects our modern times. How does this motivate you to reject the world’s ways while reaching out to those drowning in their sin? Consider Romans 1:28-32; Ephesians 5:6-14; Colossians 3:5-11; and Colossians 4:5-6 in your response.

    3. Hebrews 1:1-3 speak of God’s greatest revelation of Himself that has come to us in these last days. Who is the writer talking about, and why is He worthy of all our devotion and service [cf. John 1:1-5; John 1:14-18; and Colossians 1:15-20]?

    4. James had a warning for people in James 5:1-6 living in the last days. Who was he addressing, and what was the issue? How can we avoid their mistake? Consult also Matthew 6:19-21; 1 Timothy 6:6-10; and Revelation 3:17-20.

    5. Peter warned believers that blatant scoffers were going to appear in the last days to ridicule Christ’s promised return [2 Peter 3:1-12]. Do you see this happening today? In what contexts? How do you counter skepticism of this kind? Examine Psalm 1:1-6; 1 Timothy 4:1-5; 1 Peter 3:13-16; and Jude 1:17-23 for more insights.

    6. In light of 1 John 3:2-3, how should we then live until Jesus returns as promised [cf. Philippians 2:14-16; Colossians 3:1-4; and 1 Peter 2:11-12]?

    7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?

    “Let us be alert to the season in which we are living. It is the season of the Blessed Hope, calling for us to cut our ties with the world and build ourselves on this One who will soon appear. He is our hope—a Blessed Hope enabling us to rise above our times and fi x our gaze upon Him.” (A.W. Tozer)
  • Jul 5, 2020Mission Reset – Deric Bartlett
    Jul 5, 2020
    Mission Reset – Deric Bartlett
    Series: Reset 2020
    This week, Pastor Deric starts a new series 'Reset 2020' with a messaged titled 'Mission RESET' based on Matthew 16:13-23

    1. The leader of the mission is Jesus Christ (v. 13ff)
    2. The goal of the mission is building His church (v. 18)
    3. The foundation of the mission is confessing Jesus as Lord (v.16, 17)
    4. The courage to engage the mission is bold (v.13, 18, 19-20, 23)
    5. The keys that unlock the mission are shared with the church (v. 19-20)  
    6. The threat to the mission is from within its ranks: (v.21 - 23)

    ICEBREAKER:

    Do you think you rely too heavily on your phone? Why or why not?

    1. If Jesus was to ask His question recorded in Matthew 16:13 today, what answers do you think He would receive [cf. Matthew 12:22-32; Matthew 27:62-66; and John 10:30-33]?

    2. In response to Jesus’ question, the disciples reported the popular perceptions of Jesus’ identity [Matthew 16:14]. What do these opinions reveal about Jesus, and about the crowds? How accurate were the crowds’ opinions? [cf. Matthew 17:9-13; Luke 9:7-9; and John 1:19-28]?

    3. The disciples had been eyewitnesses to Jesus’ teaching and miracles for many months. Now, Jesus posed a question: “Who do you say that I am?” Why is this such a key question? What does it reveal about a true believer’s heart [cf. John 20:26-29; Romans 10:9-10; and Philippians 2:9-11]?

    4. Peter’s confession of Jesus as “the Christ, the Son of the living God” [Matthew 16:16] showed he was beginning to grasp Jesus’ true identity. Do you agree with Peter’s assessment? What difference does Jesus’ identity make in life [cf. Matthew 14:28-33; John 6:66-69; and John 11:25-27]?

    5. Jesus promised to build His church [Matthew 16:18], and not even the powers of death and darkness would overcome it. How is this promise giving you hope and encouragement in these difficult days [cf. Ephesians 2:19-22; 1 Timothy 3:14-16; and 1 Peter 2:4-12]?

    6. Matthew 16:18-19 are a challenge. Is Peter the preeminent apostle? What are “the keys of the kingdom”, and how do we make sense of “binding” and “loosing”? Jesus was emphasizing the early apostles’ historical significance in founding His church, as clearly portrayed in the book of Acts. As followers of Jesus, what is our role today to continue advancing His church [cf. Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 1:8; and 2 Corinthians 5:17-21]?

    7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?

    “The glory of the gospel is that when the church is absolutely different from the world, she invariably attracts it.” (Martyn Lloyd-Jones)

     
  • Jun 28, 2020The Original Storm Chaser – Deric Bartlett
    Jun 28, 2020
    The Original Storm Chaser – Deric Bartlett
    Series: Shalom
    This week, Pastor Deric conclude the series 'Shalom' with a message titled 'The Original Storm Chaser' based on Mark 4:35-41.
     
    1. Jesus prepares His people for the storm (v. 35)
    2. Jesus leads His people into the storm (v.35-37)
    3. He delivers His people through the storm (v.38-39)
    4. Jesus refines His people by the storm (v.40-41)

     

    ICEBREAKER:

    What is the funniest thing you’ve seen recently online?

    1. In context, Mark 4 records Jesus teaching His disciples about the kingdom of God. And then, in Mark 4:35-41, He shows them the kingdom of God in action.How would you describe the kingdom of God from Mark 4 [cf. Mark 9:1-13; Mark 10:13-16; and Mark 10:23-31]?

    2. Mark 4 begins and ends in a boat [Mark 4:1; 36-37]. How does it make you feel knowing that Jesus so identifi ed with humanity that He was willing to be “in the same boat” as us [cf. Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:21-23; and John 1:14]?

    3. Have you ever experienced feeling like your ship was sinking in a storm, or watched another go through a similar situation [Mark 4:37]? What did it feel like? What caused it? What did you learn from it [cf. Job 1:13-19; Jonah 1:4-6; and Acts 27:14-20]?

    4. What does the fact that Jesus was asleep in the boat’s stern, curled up on a cushion, tell you about both Jesus’ humanity and His divinity [cf. Matthew 4:2; John 4:6; and John 11:35]?

    5. What does Jesus’ calming of the storm by simply speaking to it indicate about His identity? Consult also John 1:3; Colossians 1:15-17; and Hebrews 1:8-12.

    6. Contrast the opposite reactions of fear and faith [Mark 4:40-41]. Why are we prone to fear? What role do life storms play in strengthening our faith? Examine Matthew 6:25-34; Matthew 14:28-33; and John 14:27 for further insights.

    7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?

    “If God be our God, He will give us peace in trouble. When there is a storm without, He will make peace within. The world can create trouble in peace, but God can create peace in trouble.” (Thomas Watson)

  • Jun 21, 2020Shalom @ Home – Deric Bartlett
    Jun 21, 2020
    Shalom @ Home – Deric Bartlett
    Series: Shalom
    This week, Pastor Deric continues the series 'Shalom' with a message titled 'Shalom @ Home' based on Deuteronomy 6:1-9.
     
    1. Feed your mind with the Word of God (v. 1-3)
    2. Fuel your heart with the Love of God (v. 4 – 5)
    3. Frame your life by the truth of God (v. 6 – 9)
     
    ICEBREAKER:
     
    What is a valuable lesson you learned from your father?
     
    1. Deuteronomy is the second giving of the law to the generation of Israelites about to enter into the Promised Land. What is commanded in Deuteronomy 6:1-3, and what were the promised results? And what is the link between obedience to God’s Word and fearing the LORD [cf. 1 Samuel 12:14; Psalm 19:7-9; and Proverbs 1:7-9]?
     
    2. The very heart of the Jewish faith is summarized in the confession of Deuteronomy 6:4. Jesus repeated it in Mark 12:29. It affirms the people’s allegiance to the LORD as well as His superiority over all others. Why is this confession central for worship [cf. Deuteronomy 7:7-11; Deuteronomy 10:12-17; and Mark 12:28-34]?
     
    3. Why is love for God an integral part of obedience [Deuteronomy 6:5]? Consult also Joshua 22:5; John 14:21; and 1 John 2:3-6.
     
    4. Why are we to love God with all our heart, soul and might [Deuteronomy 6:5]? How are you doing this in all these areas of life [cf. Deuteronomy 30:6; Joshua 23:6-11; and 1 Timothy 1:5]?
     
    5. How do you practice the discipleship principles listed in Deuteronomy 6:6-9 with your family and with your church family relationships? Examine Psalm 119:9, 11; Colossians 3:16-17; and 2 Timothy 2:2 for further insights.
     
    6. It is a human tendency to forget God’s great displays of grace in our lives [Deuteronomy 6:10-13]. How can we keep ourselves from taking God’s grace for granted [cf. Joshua 24:13-15; Nehemiah 9:24-26; and 2 Peter 1:9-15]?
     
    “To fall in love with God is the greatest romance; to seek him the greatest adventure; to find him, the greatest human achievement.” (Saint Augustine of Hippo)
  • Jun 14, 2020God’s City of Shalom – Deric Bartlett
    Jun 14, 2020
    God’s City of Shalom – Deric Bartlett
    Series: Shalom
    This week, Pastor Deric continues the series 'Shalom' with a message titled 'God's City of Shalom' based on Isaiah 26:1-13.
     
    1. It’s a peaceful city 
    2. It’s a gated city  
    3. It’s an active city 
    4. It’s a protected city
    ICEBREAKER: What are you doing these days to try to stay in physical shape? 1. Isaiah 26 begins with a psalm of praise to be sung in the future (“in that day”) for the faithfulness of the LORD to protect His people. Salvation is likened to the walls, bulwarks and gates of a fortified city [Isaiah 26:1-2]. What does it look like to “keep faith” so one can enter into God’s refuge [cf. Psalm 24:3-6; 2 Timothy 4:7-8; and Revelation 21:1-7]? 2. According to Isaiah 26:3, what is key to unlocking God’s perfect peace in your life [cf. Jeremiah 17:7-8; John 14:27; and Philippians 4:6-7]? 3. The Scriptures often highlight the battle between humility and pride in human hearts. What are the outcomes of each attitude as depicted in Isaiah 26:4-6 [cf. Matthew 23:11-12; James 4:6, 10; 1 Peter 5:5]? 4. What are some benefits to living righteously according to Isaiah 26:7-9 [cf. Psalm 23:3; Psalm 25:4-5; and Matthew 6:25-34]? 5. The sad reality for many in our day, as in Isaiah’s, is presuming on the grace and mercy of God by persisting in sin [Isaiah 26:10-11]. How can believers graciously but clearly communicate the prospect of God’s impending judgment [cf. John 3:16-21; Romans 2:1-11; and 2 Peter 3:3-10]? 6. Isaiah 26:12-13 sing a note of hope for God’s oppressed people. What can believers anticipate for their future [cf. Psalm 29:11; Psalm 119:165; and Isaiah 9:6-7]? 7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message? “I’m not looking for peace on earth through a political solution. I’m a pastor. The Bible talks about three kinds of peace. There is peace with God. There’s the peace of God. And there’s peace with each other.” (Rick Warren)
  • Jun 7, 2020Goodness and Mercy All My Days – Deric Bartlett
    Jun 7, 2020
    Goodness and Mercy All My Days – Deric Bartlett
    Series: Shalom
    This week, Pastor Deric continues the series 'Shalom' with a message titled 'Goodness and Mercy All My Days' based on Psalm 23.
     

    1.   We gain shalom in the knowledge of God (v. 1-3)

    2.   We experience shalom in the presence of God (v. 4-5)

    3.   We inherit shalom as the gift of God  (v. 6)    

    ICEBREAKER: Would you ride in a zeppelin if given a chance?

    1. This beloved psalm begins and ends with the personal Name of the LORD based on the verb “to be”, referring to God’s self-existing and eternal nature. It was often used when delivering His people from bondage. With this background, how comforting is it to call Him “my Shepherd” [Psalm 23:1]? Consider Isaiah 40:11; John 10:11-15; and 1 Peter 2:25 as well.

    2. Reflecting on the shepherding word picture, why do you think “green pastures” and “still waters” are significant for God’s “sheep” [Psalm 23:2]? Look up Ezekiel 34:11-16; John 10:9-10; and Revelation 7:16-17 as well.

    3. From Psalm 23:3, how does being led by the LORD in paths of righteousness help to restore your soul [cf. Psalm 19:7; Proverbs 4:11; and John 10:2-4]?

    4. David changed from writing about the LORD to writing to Him in Psalm 23:4, becoming even more personal. How is God’s presence in your life calming your fears through these difficult days [cf. Psalm 27:1; Isaiah 41:10; and Isaiah 43:1-2]?

    5. David switched metaphors in Psalm 23:5 to a royal banquet. How does it make you feel knowing the LORD views you as His favoured guest as depicted by the references to a table, anointing oil, and a full cup [cf. Psalm 16:5-6; John 14:1-4; and 1 Thessalonians 4:17]?

    6. Psalm 23:6 literally reads God’s goodness and mercy will “pursue me”. One of the best stories to illustrate this is King David’s gracious treatment of Mephibosheth, Jonathan’s crippled son [cf. 2 Samuel 9]. How does Psalm 23:6 give you hope in the middle of life’s current uncertainties [cf. Psalm 16:11; Psalm 27:4; Revelation 21:1-7, 22-27; and Revelation 22:1-6]?

    “When we think of the shepherd we think of a gentle meek nurturer of the lambs, but that is a highly filtered image. Shepherds were tough, blue-collar workers who did difficult work in difficult circumstances. Part of that work was leading the sheep, but the other part of that work was beating the wolves. Both were involved. So, the truth is that the rugged view of a shepherd is closer to reality than the gentle view of the shepherd. More precisely, for Jesus graciously to protect the sheep, he must vigorously destroy the enemy.” (Steven W. Smith)

  • May 31, 2020Living in Peace – Max Oates
    May 31, 2020
    Living in Peace – Max Oates
    Series: Shalom
    This week, Pastor Max continues the series 'Shalom' with a message titled 'Living in Peace' based on 2 Corinthians 13:11.
     

    1. Peace is birthed out of Joy.

    2. Peace grows in Relationship.

    3. Peace is founded on Holiness.

    4. Peace blossoms with Unity.

    5. Peace is coextensive with Love.
     

    ICEBREAKER: What do you rebel against?

    1. Surprisingly, some in the early church were not fans of the Apostle Paul. In 2 Corinthians, he defended his apostleship, outlining the price he had paid for serving Christ faithfully. Why does suffering play such an important role in the Christian life [cf. Matthew 5:10-12; Philippians 3:10-11; and James 5:10-11]?

    2. As Paul wrapped up 2 Corinthians, he gave a series of five commands followed by a promise. The form of each command calls for continuous activity from every believer. How is it possible for us to “rejoice” as a habitual way of life [cf. Psalm 40:16-17; Luke 10:20; Philippians 4:4-7; and 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18]?

    3. In addition to being called to continuous obedience, these commands are all plural. The call to “aim for restoration” borrows a term sometimes used in the mending of fishing nets [cf. Mark 1:19]. How does this word picture help you repair torn relationships? Consult also Romans 15:1-6; 1 Corinthians 1:10; Galatians 6:1-2; and James 5:19-20 for further insights.

    4. How is the promise of God’s presence in your life bringing you continual comfort and encouragement during your difficulties [cf. Luke 16:25; 2 Corinthians 1:3-7; 2 Corinthians 7:5-7]?

    5. How is it possible for believers to “agree with one another”, and why is this critical to our mission to the world [cf. John 13:34-35; Romans 12:16; Philippians 2:1-4; and Colossians 3:1-4]?

    6. The final command in this list promising “the God of love and peace will be with [you]” calls for us to continually “live in peace”. How do we do this, and what would it look like? Look up Romans 12:18; 1 Corinthians 1:10-13; Philippians 1:27; and 1 Thessalonians 5:12-15 for more clues.

    7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?

    “Peace comes when there is no cloud between us and God. Peace is the consequence of forgiveness, God’s removal of that which obscures His face and so breaks union with Him.” (Charles H. Brent)

     
  • May 24, 2020Peace Through the Cross – Deric Bartlett
    May 24, 2020
    Peace Through the Cross – Deric Bartlett
    Series: Shalom
    This week, Pastor Deric continues the series 'Shalom' with a message titled 'Peace Through the Cross' based on Romans 5:1-11.
     
    1. Peace is  needed (v. 1)
    2. Peace is  promised (v. 1-5) 
    3. Peace is  experienced (v. 5 - 8)   
    4. Peace is  maintained  (v. 9 - 11)

     

    ICEBREAKER:What’s your best “my coworkers are crazy” story?

    1. Romans 5:1-2 speaks of at least three benefits for believers in Jesus Christ. What are these benefits, and what difference do they make [cf. Colossians 1:20; Ephesians 3:11-12; and Colossians 1:27]?

    2. How is it possible to “rejoice in our sufferings” [Romans 5:3]? How does the Holy Spirit work through our sufferings to help us grow in Christ-likeness [Romans 5:3-5]? Consult also Matthew 5:11-12; 2 Corinthians 4:16-18; and James 1:2-4.

    3. In Romans 5:6-8, humans are called “weak”, “ungodly”, and “sinners”. Is this an accurate portrayal of humanity? If so, what evidence would you provide for those who are skeptical [cf. Romans 3:9-18; Galatians 5:19-21; and Ephesians 2:1-3]?

    4. The bad news is humanity is in a spiritual mess. The good news is God never abandoned us [Romans 5:6-8]. How did God show His love for us, why did He love us, and what had we done to deserve His love? Also look up John 3:16; John 15:13; 1 Timothy 1:15; and 1 John 4:10.

    5. Both God’s love and wrath are clearly portrayed in Romans 5:8-9. How do you understand these seemingly contradictory aspects of God’s nature, why are they both necessarily crucial, and what do they teach us about our God [cf. Romans 1:18-32; 1 Thessalonians 1:10; and 1 Thessalonians 5:9-10]?

    6. Due to Christ’s death, we have been reconciled to God [Romans 5:10-11]. What does this mean, why was it necessary, and how does it impact how you live as Jesus’ follower [cf. Isaiah 53:5; 2 Corinthians 5:18-21; Ephesians 2:14-16; and Colossians 1:19-20]?

    7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?

    “A man rejects God neither because of intellectual demands nor because of the scarcity of evidence. A man rejects God because of a moral resistance that refuses to admit his need for God.” (Ravi Zacharias)

  • May 17, 2020Jehovah Shalom – Deric Bartlett
    May 17, 2020
    Jehovah Shalom – Deric Bartlett
    Series: Shalom
    This week, Pastor Deric continues the series 'Shalom' with a message titled 'Jehovah Shalom' based on Judges 6:11-24.
     
    1. The Lord INITIATES peace
    2. The Lord CONFIRMS peace
    3. The Lord DEFENDS peace

    ICEBREAKER:What tells you the most about a person?

    1. Judges 6:1-10 records the historical background to the story of Gideon. Why was Israel suffering [6:1], what were the consequences [6:2-6], and what spiritual issues did the nation need to address [6:7-10]? How does this apply to us today [cf. Deuteronomy 28:49-52; Joshua 24:14-15; and 2 Kings 17:7-20]?

    2. The unnamed prophet of Judges 6:8-10 reminded the broken Israelite nation of how God had delivered them from Egypt and entered into a covenant relationship with them. But they had been unfaithful. What is the value of regularly reminding ourselves of God’s salvation [cf. Jonah 2:1-9; 1 Corinthians 11:23-26; and 2 Peter 1:10-15]?

    3. Gideon appeared weak, but the LORD called him a “mighty man of valour” [Judges 6:11-12]. How does God’s promised presence in your life encourage you to trust Him in the middle of life’s challenges? Consider also Joshua 1:5; Isaiah 41:10; Matthew 28:20; and Hebrews 13:5-6

    4. Gideon’s story demonstrates that our God works through the weak to overcome the strong [Judges 6:13-16]. Why do you think God accomplishes His will in this way [cf. 1 Corinthians 1:26-31; 2 Corinthians 12:7-10; and Hebrews 11:32-34]?

    5. What is signified when a person gives an offering to the LORD [Judges 6:17-19]? What does it indicate when the LORD accepts an offering from His people [6:20-21]? Look up Leviticus 9:22-24; Romans 12:1; and 1 John 2:1-6 as well.

    6. The various names of God throughout the Scriptures reveal His character. How is God’s name, “Jehovah-Shalom”, meaning “The LORD Is Peace” [Judges 6:24], calming your anxious thoughts during these days of crisis? Meditate on Isaiah 9:6-7; Isaiah 26:1-3; John 16:33; and Philippians 4:6-7 for greater insights.

    7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?

    “The happy sequence culminating in fellowship with God is penitence, pardon, and peace -- the first we offer, the second we accept, and the third we inherit.” (Charles H. Brent)

  • May 10, 2020Shalom from Generation to Generation – Deric Bartlett
    May 10, 2020
    Shalom from Generation to Generation – Deric Bartlett
    Series: Shalom
    This week, Pastor Deric continues the series 'Shalom' with a message titled 'Shalom from Generation to Generation' based on Proverbs 3-1-12.
     
    1. Keep it RELATIONAL
    2. Keep it BIBLICAL
    3. Keep it BALANCED
    4. Keep it PROMISING
    5. Keep it FOCUSED

     

    ICEBREAKER:

    Share a favourite story about your mother, or an important lesson she directly or indirectly taught you.

    1. The book of Proverbs is not a collection of guaranteed promises. Rather, it contains wise observations of life that are generally true from a divine and eternal perspective. So, according to Proverbs 3:1-2, when people obey God’s Word, what three benefits often result [cf. Deuteronomy 30:15-20; Psalm 91:14-16; Psalm 119:165; and 1 Peter 3:8-12]?

    2. If people are characterized by “steadfast love” and “faithfulness” in all their thoughts, words and deeds, how likely is it that they will relate well to God and others [Proverbs 3:3-4]? Why or why not [cf. Deuteronomy 11:18-23; Psalm 85:10-13; and Micah 6:6-8]?

    3. Why is it wise to trust the Lord rather than our own understanding [Proverbs 3:5]? What does it look like to acknowledge the Lord in all our ways [Proverbs 3:6]? Consult also Jeremiah 9:23-24; Jeremiah 17:7-8; Romans 12:16; and 2 Timothy 3:15 for more insights.

    4. Do you think there is a correlation between fearing the Lord, and physical and spiritual wellness [Proverbs 3:7-8]? If so, what is it? If you think there is no correlation, why not [cf. Proverbs 3:13-18; Proverbs 26:12; Ecclesiastes 12:13-14]?

    5. Proverbs 3:9-10 uses a beautiful word picture to convey God’s blessing for those who put Him first in all aspects of life. What might this blessing look like today [cf. Malachi 3:8-12; Luke 6:38; Luke 14:12-14; and 1 John 3:17-18]?

    6. What are the physical and spiritual benefits of discipline [Proverbs 3:11-12]? Consider also Deuteronomy 8:5; John 15:2; and Hebrews 12:5-11 in your ponderings.

    "Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God." (Corrie Ten Boom)

     
  • May 3, 2020The Blessing – Deric Bartlett
    May 3, 2020
    The Blessing – Deric Bartlett
    Series: Shalom

    This week, Pastor Deric continues the series 'Shalom' with a message called 'The Blessing' from Numbers 6:22-27.

    1. God Himself is the initiator of the SHALOM we need
    2. God’s people perpetuate SHALOM
    3. God’s blessing comes from KNOWING HIM
    4. God’s blessing is GOOD NEWS for the world


    ICEBREAKER:
    If you could choose your dreams, what would you prefer to dream about?

    1. In a world full of “false news”, misinformation, lies and deceit, how encouraged are you by the Bible’s claim that God has spoken to His people [Numbers 6:22]? Consider also Exodus 4:12-16; Matthew 4:4; 1 Thessalonians 2:13; and 2 Timothy 3:16-17.

    2. According to Numbers 6:23, what difference does it make to you that God desires to see His people blessed [cf. 1 Kings 8:54-61; 1 Chronicles 23:13; and Acts 3:26]?

    3. This priestly blessing of Numbers 6:24-26 was often used by the high priest after emerging from a sacrifice in the tabernacle [cf. Leviticus 9:22]. Why was a blessing so relevant following a sacrifice, and why does that matter to us today [cf. Hebrews 10:11-18; 1 John 2:1-2; and 1 John 4:7-12]?

    4. This blessing is actually stronger than a wish or prayer. It is the certain word of God pronounced over His people. How does the assurance of God’s life-enriching blessing and the promise of His protection [Numbers 6:24] calm your anxieties today? Meditate also on Psalm 17:6-9; Psalm 28:6-9; and Psalm 121:1-8.

    5. What do you think it means for someone’s face to shine on another [Numbers 6:25]? How does it make you feel knowing your gracious Heavenly Father looks with delight and favour on you, His beloved child [cf. Psalm 80:7, 19; 1 Corinthians 13:12; 2 Corinthians 4:5-6; and Revelation 22:4]?

    6. God’s grace and peace are the two main emphases in this blessing. What impact is God’s grace and peace having on you during these days of pandemic, fear and isolation? Examine Romans 16:20; 2 Peter 1:2-4; and Revelation 1:4-7 for further encouragement.

    “All the blessings we enjoy are Divine deposits, committed to our trust on this condition, that they should be dispensed for the benefit of our neighbours.” (John Calvin)

  • Apr 26, 2020God’s Plan for You – Deric Bartlett
    Apr 26, 2020
    God’s Plan for You – Deric Bartlett
    Series: Shalom

    This week, Pastor Deric continues the series ' Shalom' with a message called 'God's Plan For You'. Based on Jeremiah 29: 7, 11-14.

    1. God has a plan for your life
    2. God’s plan is for you is SHALOM
    3. God’s plan for you is revealed in prayer
    4. God’s plan is to bless you so that you bless others in His name

     

    ICEBREAKER: What does your perfect breakfast look like?

    1. In context, Jeremiah wrote a letter [Jeremiah 29:1] to the Jews exiled in Babylon explaining they would be there for a total of 70 years [Jeremiah 29:10]. This conflicted with others prophesying a short-lived exile and Babylon’s soon demise [Jeremiah 29:8-9]. In light of this background, what do you find amazing about Jeremiah’s instructions to the exiles in Jeremiah 29:4-7?

    2. God knew the Babylonian captivity of His people would last 70 years [Jeremiah 25:11-12; 29:10; and Daniel 9:1-2]. How does God’s knowledge of the future furnish you with hope and courage today [cf. 1 Corinthians 15:51-57; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; 2 Peter 3:10-13; and Revelation 21:1-4]?

    3. How does the fact that Jeremiah 29:11 was given in the context of God disciplining His people refine your understanding of this favourite promise in His Word? Consult Jeremiah 31:16-20; Hebrews 12:5-11; and Revelation 3:19 for further insights.

    4. What do you learn about pursuing God from Jeremiah 29:12-13 [cf. Deuteronomy 30:1-5; 1 Kings 8:46-48; and Daniel 9:3-19]?

    5. The theme of believers being in exile is repeated throughout the Bible [Jeremiah 29:14]. How does this word picture help you navigate the challenges of living in the world today [cf. Zephaniah 3:14-20; Hebrews 11:13-16; and 1 Peter 2:11-12]?

    6. What does it mean to “seek the welfare of the city” where God has intentionally placed you [Jeremiah 29:7]? What would that look like [Romans 13:1-7; 1 Timothy 2:1-4; and 1 Peter 2:13-17]?

    “Seeking the welfare of our community in a world that is hostile to our faith is not for the squeamish. It’s not for the half-hearted or cynical or bewildered or angry or dispirited. And we can’t let resistance or resignation or resentment get in our way…But I can see that God wants me to get over my attitude problem with being an exile and dig in for the long haul.”

    (Tom Hobson)