Jun 9, 2019
Committed to Stir You Up – Deric Bartlett
Series: COMMITTED
This week Pastor Deric continues the series Committed with a sermon titled Committed to Stir You Up focusing on 1 Thessalonians 5: 1 - 11
 
Questions
1 Thessalonians 5:1-11
ICEBREAKER: What was your worst childhood injury?
1. The phrase “the day of the Lord” refers to a future time period when the Lord will intervene in human history to complete His plan of redemption and judgment [1 Thessalonians 5:2]. Examine such passages as Joel 2:30-32, Amos 5:18-20, Zephaniah 2:1-3, Malachi 4:1, and 2 Peter 3:10 to find more details.
2. The world hopes for a brighter future, whereas the Bible speaks of a frightful future for unbelievers [2 Thessalonians 5:3]. Does this prospect propel you forward to reach out to unbelievers [cf. 2 Corinthians 5:16-21; 2 Timothy 4:1-5; Titus 2:11-14]?
3. From 1 Thessalonians 5:4-5, as well as Matthew 5:13-16, John 8:12, Romans 1:18- 23, and Ephesians 5:3-14, what are the contrasts between living in the light and living in the dark?
4. Does the term “sleep” in 1 Thessalonians 5:6-7 mean the same as “asleep” in 4:13- 15? How would you explain the different meanings based on their respective contexts?
5. We are commanded twice to “be sober” [1 Thessalonians 5:6, 8]. What does that look like based on these verses as well as 2 Timothy 4:5, 1 Peter 1:13, 1 Peter 4:7, and 1 Peter 5:8?
6. How do you reconcile God’s love and His wrath [1 Thessalonians 5:9]? Include John 3:36, Romans 5:8-9, Romans 12:19, and Ephesians 2:3 in your thoughts.
7. From 1 Thessalonians 5:9-10, how do we specifically encourage and edify one another [1 Thessalonians 5:11]?
8. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?
 
“And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. And those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky above; and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever" (Daniel 12:2-3).
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  • Jun 9, 2019Committed to Stir You Up – Deric Bartlett
    Jun 9, 2019
    Committed to Stir You Up – Deric Bartlett
    Series: COMMITTED
    This week Pastor Deric continues the series Committed with a sermon titled Committed to Stir You Up focusing on 1 Thessalonians 5: 1 - 11
     
    Questions
    1 Thessalonians 5:1-11
    ICEBREAKER: What was your worst childhood injury?
    1. The phrase “the day of the Lord” refers to a future time period when the Lord will intervene in human history to complete His plan of redemption and judgment [1 Thessalonians 5:2]. Examine such passages as Joel 2:30-32, Amos 5:18-20, Zephaniah 2:1-3, Malachi 4:1, and 2 Peter 3:10 to find more details.
    2. The world hopes for a brighter future, whereas the Bible speaks of a frightful future for unbelievers [2 Thessalonians 5:3]. Does this prospect propel you forward to reach out to unbelievers [cf. 2 Corinthians 5:16-21; 2 Timothy 4:1-5; Titus 2:11-14]?
    3. From 1 Thessalonians 5:4-5, as well as Matthew 5:13-16, John 8:12, Romans 1:18- 23, and Ephesians 5:3-14, what are the contrasts between living in the light and living in the dark?
    4. Does the term “sleep” in 1 Thessalonians 5:6-7 mean the same as “asleep” in 4:13- 15? How would you explain the different meanings based on their respective contexts?
    5. We are commanded twice to “be sober” [1 Thessalonians 5:6, 8]. What does that look like based on these verses as well as 2 Timothy 4:5, 1 Peter 1:13, 1 Peter 4:7, and 1 Peter 5:8?
    6. How do you reconcile God’s love and His wrath [1 Thessalonians 5:9]? Include John 3:36, Romans 5:8-9, Romans 12:19, and Ephesians 2:3 in your thoughts.
    7. From 1 Thessalonians 5:9-10, how do we specifically encourage and edify one another [1 Thessalonians 5:11]?
    8. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?
     
    “And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. And those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky above; and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever" (Daniel 12:2-3).
  • Jun 2, 2019Committed to Encouragement – Deric Bartlett
    Jun 2, 2019
    Committed to Encouragement – Deric Bartlett
    Series: COMMITTED
    This week Pastor Deric continues the series Committed with a sermon titled Committed to Encouragement focusing on 1 Thessalonians 4: 13-18
     
    Questions
    1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
    ICEBREAKER: If you could visit heaven right now and talk with one of the people of the Bible (other than Jesus), who would you talk to?
    1. Three times in 1 Thessalonians 4:13-15, the term “sleep” appears. Why do you think this term is used and what is implied by it? Consider other passages such as Matthew 27:52, John 11:11, and 1 Corinthians 15:20 to gain further insights.
    2. From your experience, how do people who have no hope grieve, why do they grieve in this manner, and how does this contrast with your hope as a believer [1 Thessalonians 4:13]?
    3. The return of Christ is as much an indispensable part of the gospel message as His death and resurrection [1 Thessalonians 4:14-16]. How does this future hope influence your current living according to this text as well as Titus 2:11-14, James 5:7-11, and 1 John 3:1-3?
    4. What is the order of events that will occur at Christ’s return [1 Thessalonians 4:15-17]? Why are all these details important for believers to know [cf. 1 Corinthians 15:51-57]?
    5. Trick question: Is it better to still be alive at Christ’s coming, or to have died prior to His coming? How does this influence your view of death and your eternal hope? Refer to Isaiah 61, 1 Corinthians 15:20-28, and Revelation 21:1-4 for greater clarity.
    6. The Apostle Paul encouraged believers to hold tightly to the hope of always being with the Lord [1 Thessalonians 4:17-18]. How could you use these verses, alongside of John 14:1-3, Luke 23:43, 1 Corinthians 15:58, and 2 Corinthians 5:1-10, to encourage those who are discouraged, anxious, or lacking hope?
    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 fix our gaze upon Him.” (A.W. Tozer)
  • May 26, 2019Committed to grow – Deric Bartlett
    May 26, 2019
    Committed to grow – Deric Bartlett
    Series: COMMITTED
    This week Pastor Deric continues the series Committed with a sermon titled Committed to Grow focusing on 1 Thessalonians 4:1-12
     
    Questions
    1 Thessalonians 4:1-12
    ICEBREAKER: Apart from the Bible, what is your favourite book, and what makes it so special to you?
    1. Our culture believes people may live as they please without restraints. On the other hand, God’s Word commands that believers must live to please God [1 Thessalonians 4:1-2]. How would you contrast these opposing perspectives using this text alongside of Galatians 5:16-26, Ephesians 4:17-32, and Colossians 3:1-17?
    2. Some believers find God’s will elusive. According to 1 Thessalonians 4:3a, what is God’s will for your life? Consider other texts such as Romans 6:19, Romans 6:22, Romans 12:2, Ephesians 6:6, and 1 Peter 1:13-16 for further insights.
    3. Our sexually permissive culture mirrors that of the first century A.D. By way of contrast, God’s Word clearly commands how believers must conduct themselves sexually – what they ought to do and ought not to do. What are those commands in 1 Thessalonians 4:3-5, and what are God’s reasons for giving them?
    4. Why should believers refrain from illicit sexual behaviour [1 Thessalonians 4:6-8]? What are the solemn consequences outlined in this text, as well as in 2 Corinthians 5:9-10 and Hebrews 13:4?
    5. God has given believers His revelation and His Spirit [1 Thessalonians 4:7-8]. How do these resources empower Christians to live sexually pure while surrounded by a corrupt culture? Meditate on other texts such as Psalm 119:9-11, Galatians 5:16, 1 Peter 2:11-12, and 1 John 2:1-6 for greater understanding.
    6. What are some characteristics of the sanctified life listed by Paul in 1 Thessalonians 4:9-11, and what are the goals of this virtuous way of life [1 Thessalonians 4:12]?
    7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?
     
    “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” (Jesus)
  • May 19, 2019Committed to fix your heart – Deric Bartlett
    May 19, 2019
    Committed to fix your heart – Deric Bartlett
    Series: COMMITTED
    This week Pastor Deric continues the series Committed with a sermon titled Committed to Fix your hearts focusing on 1 Thessalonians 3:9-13
     
    Questions
    1 Thessalonians 3:9-13
    ICEBREAKER: What were some of your childhood hobbies?
    1. There appears to be a correlation between “giving thanks” and “joy”. Four times in 1 Thessalonians, Paul gave thanks for others [1:2; 2:13; 3:9; 5:18], and experienced joy another four times [1:6; 2:19, 2:20; 3:9]. From these verses, what is the correlation, and how has thanksgiving produced joy in your life and ministry?
    2. What are some factors that could contribute to a lack in one’s faith [3:10]? Examine texts such as Matthew 6:30, Matthew 14:31, Mark 4:40, Luke 22:32 and Romans 14:1 for insights.
    3. What principles of prayer do you learn from Paul’s example in 1 Thessalonians 3:10-11?
    4. What are the effects of abounding love for one another [1Thessalonians 3:12]? To answer, consider such texts as John 13:34-35, Romans 13:8, Ephesians 4:2, 1 Peter 4:8, 1 John 4:7, and 1 John 4:12.
    5. God is at work to strengthen/establish our hearts [1 Thessalonians 3:13]. How does He accomplish this [3:12], and what are the results [3:13]?
    6. How does the assurance that you will be blameless and holy in God’s sight get you through the trials of today and give you hope for the future [1 Thessalonians 3:13]?
    7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?
     
    “Do not strive in your own strength; cast yourself at the feet of the Lord Jesus, and wait upon Him in the sure confidence that He is with you, and works in you. Strive in prayer; let faith fill your heart - so will you be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might.” (Andrew Murray)
  • May 12, 2019Parenting Your Adult Children – Deric Bartlett
    May 12, 2019
    Parenting Your Adult Children – Deric Bartlett
    Series: One off
    On the Mother's day of 2019, Pastor Deric preached a sermon entitled Parenting Your Adult Children focused on Proverbs 23:22.
     
    Questions
    Proverbs 23:22
    ICEBREAKER: What is your favourite or most memorable “Mom” moment?
    1. Genesis 2:24 gives the reason a man leaves his parents to marry his wife. From this text, what are the implications for the parents who are left? If you have experienced this departure, either as a child or as a parent, what was it like?
    2. 3 John 4 is referring to spiritual children, but the principle can apply to the parenting process as well. What evidence are you looking for to discern whether your children are “walking in the truth”?
    3. The fifth commandment mandates the honouring of parents [Exodus 20:12]. Does this require that all children, including adult ones, should be expected to obey their parents at all times and in every way? Is it possible to honour parents without fully obeying them?
    4. What principles of parenting children do you glean from God’s comments to Abraham in Genesis 18:19?
    5. Proverbs 3:1-10 provides an excellent example of a godly parent passing on wise counsel to children of an unspecified age. Some of the counsel appears particularly relevant to older offspring as well [3:9]. Which of these proverbs would be fitting for your family members, and how would they apply?
    6. Part of parenting adult children is to encourage them to conduct themselves in a godly, responsible manner within the broader family of God. What good counsel comes from Paul in 1 Timothy 5:1-16 that applies to all ages?
    7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?
     
    “To learn strong faith is to endure great trials. I have learned my faith by standing firm amid severe testings.” [George Mueller]
  • May 5, 2019Standing Strong in Your Trials – Deric Bartlett
    May 5, 2019
    Standing Strong in Your Trials – Deric Bartlett
    Series: COMMITTED
    This week Pastor Deric continues the series Committed with a sermon entitled Standing Strong in Your Trials focusing on 1 Thessalonians 3:1-8
     
    Questions
    1 Thessalonians 3:1-8
    ICEBREAKER: Before you die, what is one thing you’d like to do just for the fun/thrill of it?

    1. How did Paul express his deep and heartfelt concern for this local church family in 1 Thessalonians 2:17-3:1? Are there some in your circle of ministry    
        who you would consider your “glory and crown”?
    2. Paul sent Timothy to the Thessalonian church out of his concern for their spiritual vitality. If you knew someone was “moved” or shaken by afflictions [1
        Thessalonians 3:1], how would you try to “establish and exhort” them about their faith [3:2]?
    3. Why do you think God destines or appoints His precious children for affliction [1 Thessalonians 3:3-4]? Use passages such as Acts 11:19, Romans 5:3-
        5, Romans 12:12 and 2 Corinthians 4:17-18 to contribute to your understanding.
    4. Satan is mentioned as a true menace in 1 Thessalonians 2:18 and 3:5. How can a follower of Christ avoid falling prey to his temptations based on such
        texts as Zechariah 3:1-2, Matthew 4:1-11, John 8:44, 2 Corinthians 2:11, 2 Corinthians 11:14, James 4:7 and 1 Peter 5:8-9?
    5. Paul experienced both the highs and the lows of ministry. In 1 Thessalonians 3:1-3, he was anxious for the church’s faith. However, in 3:6, he was
        ecstatic when he heard Timothy’s good news report. How are you fostering this kind of affection and attachment to those you minister?
    6. How does the faith of others encourage or comfort you as you endure life’s distresses and afflictions [1 Thessalonians 3:7]?
    7. How do believers “stand firm in the Lord” [1 Thessalonians 3:8], based on passages like 1 Corinthians 16:13, Galatians 5:1, Philippians 1:27, and 2
        Thessalonians 2:15?
    8. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?
     
     
    “To learn strong faith is to endure great trials. I have learned my faith by standing firm amid severe testings.” [George Mueller]
  • Apr 28, 2019Committed to Dokimos Part 2
    Apr 28, 2019
    Committed to Dokimos Part 2
    Series: COMMITTED
    This week Pastor Deric continues the series Committed with a sermon entitled Committed to Dokimos- Part 2 focusing on 1 Thessalonians 2:9-20
     
    Questions
    1 Thessalonians 2:9-20
    ICEBREAKER: What was one of your favourite trips, and what made it so memorable?
    1. The Apostle Paul strategically used his so-called “secular job” as a tentmaker [cf. Acts 18:3] to further the gospel message [1 Thessalonians 2:9]. How    
        can you do the same in your work situation [cf. 1 Corinthians 4:12; 1 Thessalonians 4:11; 2 Thessalonians 3:7-12]?
    2. What do the terms “labour”, “toil”, and “worked” imply about the reality of Christian ministry [1 Thessalonians 2:9]? What helps you persevere through
        life’s hardships and challenges?
    3. Paul and his associates weren’t claiming perfection in 1 Thessalonians 2:10. In what sense were they “holy”, “righteous”, and “blameless”? What would
        the Thessalonians “witness” in Paul, Silas and Timothy’s conduct that would qualify as evidence?
    4. What do you learn about balanced ministry from the two metaphors Paul used of a “nursing mother taking care of her own children” [1 Thessalonians
        2:7], and of a “father with his children” [1 Thessalonians 2:11]? Why are both essential?
    5. Why are “exhorting”, “encouraging”, and “charging” necessary in discipleship [1 Thessalonians 2:12]? How do these practices help us “walk in a manner
        worthy of God” [cf. Ephesians 4:1; Philippians 1:27; Colossians 1:10]?
    6. How does the assurance of God’s call to His kingdom and glory inspire and motivate you despite the hardships of life and ministry [Daniel 7:13- 14; \
        Micah 4:1-5; 1 Corinthians 15:24-28; Revelation 21:1-4]?
    7. How does the knowledge of Christ’s sufferings and those of other believers strengthen you to endure when you’re faced with open hostility to your beliefs     [1 Thessalonians 2:14-16]?
    8.People matter to God, so people should matter to us [1 Thessalonians 2:17-20]. Who has influenced you to follow Christ, and why was he/she effective? How can
       you do the same by influencing others to follow Christ?
    9. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?
     
    “To pursue joy is to lose it. The only way to get it is to follow steadily the path of duty, without thinking of joy, and then, like sheep, it comes most surely unsought, and we “being in the way,” the angel of God, bright-haired joy, is sure to meet us.” [Alexander MacLaren]
  • Apr 21, 2019Easter Reflections_Deric Bartlett
    Apr 21, 2019
    Easter Reflections_Deric Bartlett
    Series: Easter
    On Easter of 2019, Pastor Deric preached a sermon entitled Easter Reflections focused on asking the right questions.
     
    Questions
    ICEBREAKER: Was there ever a time when you were frightened for your life?
    1. How does the Bible’s portrayal of Jesus’ full humanity [hunger – Matthew 4:2; thirst – John 19:28; physically exhausted/weary – John 4:6; tired – Matthew 8:24; agony/ anguish – Luke 22:44] affect your perspective of Him? Does this help you in your spiritual walk, or hinder you? Why?
    2. Do you fear death? How do Scripture passages such as Hebrews 2:14-15, 1 Corinthians 15:20-28, Revelation 20:11-14, and Revelation 21:4 change your outlook?
    3. Hebrews 2:17-18 lists some results stemming from Christ’s sacrifice of Himself on the cross for the sins of humanity. Are any of these particularly poignant for you? Why?
    4. How do you account for the apparent shock and surprise of the first witnesses of Jesus’ resurrection [Luke 24:1-12] in light of His clear communication to them prior to the event [Luke 18:31-34]?
    5. What did the reaction of the disciples in Luke 24:36-43 reveal about the reality of Jesus’ resurrection, and how did Jesus reassure them?
    6. What features of the encounter between Jesus and Mary Magdalene in John 20:11-18 indicate this was an eye-witness account? What aspects do you find personally touching or moving? Why?
    7. What did you find helpful or challenging about the messages on Good Friday or Easter Sunday?
     
    “God has defeated Satan through the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. Through this overwhelming victory, God has also empowered you to overcome any temptation to sin and has provided sufficient resources for you to respond biblically to any problem of life. By relying on God’s power and being obedient to His Word, you can be an overcomer in any situation.” [John C. Broger]
  • Apr 19, 2019The Monster Lurking Below_Brad Lehman
    Apr 19, 2019
    The Monster Lurking Below_Brad Lehman
    Series: One off
    On Good Friday of 2019, Pas. Brad Lehman preached a Sermon titled The Monster Lurking Below focusing on Hebrews 2: 14-18.
     
  • Apr 14, 2019Comitted to Dokimos- Deric Bartlett
    Apr 14, 2019
    Comitted to Dokimos- Deric Bartlett
    Series: COMMITTED
    This week Pastor Deric continues the series Committed with a sermon entitled Committed to Dokimos- Part 1 focusing on 1 Thessalonians 2:1-8
     
    Questions
    1 Thessalonians 2:1-8
    ICEBREAKER: Who is the most famous person you have known or met? How did it happen?
    1. Surprisingly, the Apostle Paul had his detractors in his day. In 1 Thessalonians 2:1- 6, he defended his ministry by reminding the Thessalonian believers of his ministry among them [cf. Acts 17:1-14]. What did they “know” about him [repeated 3 times in verses 1, 2, 5] that proved his legitimacy?
    2. Why does so much conflict/opposition accompany the declaration of the gospel of God [1 Thessalonians 2:2; cf. Acts 16:11-40]? What does this require of those who share the good news in our antagonistic world?
    3. Corrupt motives contaminate the gospel’s appeal [1 Thessalonians 2:3]. Have you observed corrupt motives in the presentation of the gospel in today’s church? How do believers combat error, impurity and deceit so that the gospel message remains pure and powerful?
    4. God tests our hearts in order to reinforce their integrity and usefulness. What, specifically in this text [1 Thessalonians 2:4-5], is God looking for in order to approve us?
    5. Why does character matter so much in ministry [1 Thessalonians 2:5; cf. 2 Timothy 14-26, especially verses 20-21]?
    6. Glory-seeking is always condemned in Scripture [cf. Proverbs 25:27; Isaiah 42:8; Romans 1:21-23; Acts 12:20-23]. How do we address this tendency within the context of our self-absorbed culture?
    7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?
     
    “No faith is so precious as that which lives and triumphs through adversity. Tested faith brings experience. You would never have believed your own weakness had you not needed to pass through trials. And you would never have known God’s strength had His strength not been needed to carry you through.” [Charles Spurgeon]
     
  • Apr 7, 2019Committed to His Gospel-Deric Bartlett
    Apr 7, 2019
    Committed to His Gospel-Deric Bartlett
    Series: COMMITTED
    This week Pastor Deric continues the series Committed with a sermon entitled Committed to His Gospel focusing on 1 Thessalonians 1:4-10.
     
    Questions
    1 Thessalonians 1:4-10
    ICEBREAKER: Have you ever won a trophy? If so, share the story of your triumph.
    1. How does it make you feel to know God loves you and chose you for Himself [1 Thessalonians 1:4]? Spend a few moments in quiet reflection, thanksgiving and worship inspired by His love for you.
    2. How does the report of the Thessalonians’ conversion in 1 Thessalonians 1:5 influence your approach to sharing your faith? What are the evidences of true, saving faith?
    3. How is it possible to experience joy while suffering great affliction [1 Thessalonians 1:6]? Recall the history of the Thessalonian church’s beginnings in Acts 17:1-14, as well as Paul’s observations in 2 Corinthians 8:1-5.
    4. Godly examples provide inspiration and direction for our lives. What did Paul find exemplary among the Thessalonians [1 Thessalonians 1:7-8]? In what areas of our lives should we strive to be exemplary [cf. 1 Timothy 4:12]?
    5. 1 Thessalonians 1:9 paints a poignant portrait of genuine repentance. What qualifies as idolatry today [cf. Colossians 3:5; Revelation 9:20]? Contrast these empty pursuits with the beauty and majesty of our God as described by Paul at the end of this verse.
    6. According to 1 Thessalonians 1:10, what is the relevance of the titles/ names and actions ascribed to our Saviour? How do these provide you with hope, encouragement, and motivation to face the challenges of life?
    7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?
     
    “Faith, Hope and Love: Faith is directed towards God, love towards others.The church is not a theological classroom. It is a conversion, confession, repentance, reconciliation, forgiveness and sanctification center, where flawed people place their faith in Christ, gather to know and love him better, and learn to love others as he designed.” [Paul David Tripp]
  • Mar 31, 2019Comitted to His People-Deric Bartlett
    Mar 31, 2019
    Comitted to His People-Deric Bartlett
    Series: COMMITTED
    This week Pastor Deric continues the series Committed with a sermon entitled Committed to His People focusing on 1 Thessalonians 1:1-3
     
    Questions
    1 Thessalonians 1:1-3
    ICEBREAKER: Share a favourite childhood memory about one of your siblings.
    1. Acts 17:1-14 provides some historical background to the beginning of the church in Thessalonica. What do you learn about the Apostle Paul’s mission strategy, his message, and the various responses to the gospel in this story that is useful for our mission today?
    2. Paul mentioned others in his greeting, namely Silvanus [also known as Silas – cf. Acts 15:32; Acts 16:25; 1 Peter 5:12] and Timothy [cf. Acts 16:1-3; Philippians 2:19- 22; 2 Timothy 1:2-5]. Why are these individuals important, and what do you learn about how Paul valued relationships in life and ministry?
    3. The term “church” [1 Thessalonians 1:1] literally means “called out” ones. In this context, it referred to those called out by God in the city of Thessalonica, gathered together to live in community with one another, and sent out on mission together. How does this impact your commitment to being a member of CCBC?
    4. Paul almost always addressed specific churches by city name when he wrote, rooting his instructions in specific places and times. Why is this significant, and how does this influence the specific ministry of our church (City Centre Baptist) in our specific city of Mississauga in 2019?
    5. 1 Thessalonians 1:2 shares words of thanksgiving and prayer. How do you respond when you hear encouraging words from others, and how can you use this to lift up the spirits of others?
    6. 1 Thessalonians 1:3 lists the 3 key Christian virtues of faith, love and hope. Why are these foundational to the Christian life? Look up 1 Corinthians 13:13, Colossians 1:5 and 1 Thessalonians 5:8 to see the interplay between these virtues.
    7. What do you notice about the words associated with faith, love and hope in 1 Thessalonians 1:3? What do these energetic terms convey about our responsibilities as followers of Jesus?
    8. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?
     
    “Faith, Hope and Love: Faith is directed towards God, love towards others (both within the Christian fellowship and beyond it) and hope towards the future, in particular, the glorious coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Similarly, faith rests on the past; love works in the present; hope looks to the future. Every Christian without exception is a believer, a lover and a hoper. Faith, hope and love are three sure evidences of regeneration by the Holy Spirit.” (John Stott)
  • Mar 24, 2019The Quest for God’s Best – Deric Bartlett
    Mar 24, 2019
    The Quest for God’s Best – Deric Bartlett
    Series: COMMITTED
    This week Pastor Deric begins the series Committed with a sermon entitled The Quest for God's Best focusing on 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24
     
    Questions
    1 Thessalonians 5:23 - 24
    ICEBREAKER: What is the strangest thing you have ever eaten?
    1. Our God is characterized by peace [1 Thessalonians 5:23]. How do Romans 5:1 and Ephesians 2:13-16 help you understand this aspect of God’s character? How does this description make a difference in how you live?
    2. The biblical concept of “being sanctified completely” is foreign to pop culture. How would you explain this to an unbelieving friend, showing its beauty, purpose and hope? Use Ephesians 5:25-27 to inform your explanation.
    3. Our modern world is confused about what it means to be “human”. How do you differentiate spirit, soul and body, and what do these aspects of our nature indicate about what it means to be truly human?
    4. Who is keeping believers blameless, and how does this promise give you hope despite your continued struggles with sin [cf. 1 Thessalonians 3:11-13]?
    5. In this text, we are afforded an “over the shoulder” glimpse into the Apostle Paul’s prayer life, for 1 Thessalonians 5:23 is in the form of a prayer. What do you learn about prayer from this verse, and how does this impact the way you pray for others?
    6. Does the future prospect of Christ’s return influence how you live today? How?
    7. How does the knowledge of God’s faithfulness to you affect your commitment to Him [1 Thessalonians 5:24]? 
    8. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?
     
    “God is true. His Word of Promise is sure. In all His relations with His people God is faithful. He may be safely relied upon. No one ever yet really trusted Him in vain. We find this precious truth expressed almost everywhere in the Scriptures, for His people need to know that faithfulness is an essential part of the Divine character. This is the basis of our confidence in Him.” [A.W. Pink, The Attributes of God]
  • Mar 17, 2019Community Living Part 2-Max Oates
    Mar 17, 2019
    Community Living Part 2-Max Oates
    This week Pastor Max concludes the series Community Living with a sermon entitled Community Living - Part 2 focusing on Ephesians 4:25-32
     
    Questions
    Ephesians 4:25-32
    ICEBREAKER: What is your earliest childhood memory?
    1. Why does falsehood disrupt community? What are believers to substitute for falsehood [Ephesians 4:25], and what would this look like within our faith community?
    2. How is it possible to be angry and not sin [Ephesians 4:26]? How do you reconcile this with Jesus’ actions when He cleared the temple courts [cf. John 2:13-17]? Why is this a critical lesson to learn [4:27]?
    3. What do you learn from Ephesians 4:28-29 about overcoming evil behaviours and speech? How would you use this principle to counsel someone struggling with any sin?
    4. How do we grieve the Holy Spirit [cf. Acts 2:3-4; 1 Thessalonians 5:19], and what does this reveal about the Spirit’s identity [Ephesians 4:30]?
    5. What does this list of misbehaviours indicate about Christians [Ephesians 4:31]? How do we specifically put these things away [cf. Colossians 3:5- 11]?
    6. What should characterize our church relationships [Ephesians 4:32]? Where do we need to grow as church family? What might result if our community acted like this?
    7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?

    “Nothing can be more cruel than the leniency which abandons others to their sin. Nothing can be more compassionate than the severe reprimand which calls another Christian in one’s community back from the path of sin.” (Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Life Together: The Classic Exploration of Christian Community)
  • Mar 10, 2019Community Living – Max Oates
    Mar 10, 2019
    Community Living – Max Oates
    This week Pastor Max begins the series Community Living with a sermon entitled Community Living - Part 1 focussing on 1 Peter 4: 8 -11
     
    Questions
    1 Peter 4: 8 - 11
    ICEBREAKER: If you were banished to a desert island, would you rather be stranded alone, or with your worst enemy? Why?
    1. In context, healthy church community life flows from a specific conviction [1 Peter 4:7]. What is that conviction, and how are we to conduct ourselves accordingly?
    2. Why is love such a priority for the Christian community [1 Peter 4:8a]? How have you experienced genuine Christian love within a church family?
    3. “Love covers a multitude of sins” [1 Peter 4:8b]. Does this mean sins should never be confronted? Explain the difference between covering sins and covering up sins.
    4. Is it possible to grumble while showing hospitality [1 Peter 4:9]? What does this reveal about human character? Under what circumstances could this occur?
    5. What are the privileges and responsibilities associated with being a “steward”, and how would one know if he/she was a “good” one [1 Peter 4:10]?
    6. What is the ultimate purpose in stewarding our spiritual gifts [1 Peter 4:11]? What is our role, and what is God’s role, in fostering healthy church community life?
    7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?

    “As the church, we are in community together trying to fulfill this Great Commission that Jesus left us with. As we gently press into each other, we form one united thing, His church. As we work together, sharing the space God gives us to do His work, we all become shaped a little different. We all become a little more like Him.” (Jennifer L. Lane)