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Check here each week for information to prepare your heart for the upcoming sermon and follow-up questions you can use after the sermon to dig deeper and disciple your family!

Posts Tagged "Church"

Love Christ and His Church

July 05, 2019
By Pastor Jathan

Love Christ and His Church

1 Corinthians 16:15-24

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • Why did the Corinthians need to be reminded to be subject to every fellow worker?
  • Does Paul’s statement in v22 shock you?  Why?  What can you learn from it?
  • Why would Paul take the time to include all the different ones who send greetings to the Corinthians?

Other passages to consider: Gen 12:1-3; Ps 2; Mark 12:28-34; John 17:20-26; 1 Cor 12:12-13:7; Eph 4:1-6; 2 Tim 4:6-18; Heb 13:17; 1 Pet 5:1-5; Philemon v4-7

Digging Deeper:

  • How have other believers refreshed your spirit?  How could you do that for others?
  • What is our modern-day equivalent of greet one-another with a holy kiss?  Why is such a practice important?
  • How is leadership in the church to be exercised?  What should be our attitude toward our servant-leaders?
  • Despite all the headaches and issues Paul has had to address with the Corinthians, look at the last sentence of his letter.  What does his example teach us about loving and bearing with one another?

 

Shepherding the Flock

May 11, 2019
By Pastor Jathan

Shepherding the Flock

Acts 20:28; 1 Pet 5:1-4; Heb 13:17

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • How did the church come to be?  How is the church described in the NT?
  • What does a shepherd do for sheep?  How does that describe how elders are to serve the church?
  • What does it look like for elders to pay careful attention to all the flock and exercise oversight?  What does that entail?

Other passages to consider: Ezek 34:1-10; John 10:7-18, 22-30; Acts 20:17-32; Col 1:28-29; 1 Thess 2:1-12; 1 Tim 3:1-7; Heb 13:7-9, 12-21

Digging Deeper:

  • How does a man become an elder?  Who puts him in that position?
  • How, practically speaking, can elders keep watch over the souls of the church?
  • Given God’s design, what responsibility do Christians have to the church and to elders?
  • What should motivate elders to diligently care for the flock?  What should not motivate them?

Future Hope Should Affect Present Life

May 02, 2019
By Pastor Jathan

Future Hope Should Affect Present Life

1 Corinthians 15:29-34

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • How did Paul's life reflect his belief in the truth of the Gospel?
  • What is a Christian's hope?
  • How should Christians live differently from unbelievers?  Why?

Other passages to consider: Isa 22:13; Matt 5:13-16; Rom 6:3-13; 8:35; 1 Cor 15:1-28; 2 Cor 1:8-10; 4:7-12; 6:4-10; 11:23-29; Phil 1:21

Digging Deeper:

  • How can unbelievers have a negative influence on us?
  • What effect is my future hope having on my life now?
  • In what ways am I being influenced by the world?  What steps do I need to take?
  • How can my actions/commitments point others to faith in Christ?

The Paramount Importance of the Resurrection

April 12, 2019
By Pastor Jathan

The Paramount Importance of the Resurrection

1 Corinthians 15:12-19

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • What are the essential components of the Gospel?
  • What is the connection between Christ’s resurrection and our future resurrection?
  • Is it that big of a deal if someone denies the resurrection of the dead?  What is at stake?

Other passages to consider: Ps 19:7-11; Rom 4:25; 1 Cor 6:14; 15:1-20; 2 Cor 4:14; 5:8; Phil 1:21,23; 1 Thess 4:13-18

Digging Deeper:

  • Why is it so important that the Bible is without error?
  • How does our salvation depend on Christ’s resurrection?
  • How does our sure hope of a future resurrection impact our lives in the present?

Christ Died for Our Sins According to the Scriptures

March 14, 2019
By Pastor Jathan

Christ Died for our Sins According to the Scriptures

1 Corinthians 15:3

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • What does Paul mean we he says Christ death and resurrection is “according to the Scriptures”?
  • Why is it important for Christians to know the Old Testament?
  • How does the NT shed more light on the OT?  What role does the death/resurrection of Christ play?

Other passages to consider: Ex 12; Lev 16:1-22; Num 21:4-9; Psalm 22; Isa 53; Luke 24:25-27; John 3:14-18; 5:39,46; Acts 2:23; 4:23-28; 7:51-52; 13:23-29; 1 Cor 5:7; Heb 9:24-10:25; 13:10-15

Digging Deeper:

  • How does the OT help us to understand more fully what Christ accomplished on the cross?
  • Why is it helpful to see how the Apostles use the OT?
  • What is encouraging about the fact that Christ death was according to the definite plan of God?
  • In what ways could you become more familiar with the OT?

Keeping the Gospel Central

March 08, 2019
By Pastor Jathan

Keeping the Gospel Central – 1 Corinthians 15:1-5

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • What is the Gospel?  Who is focus of the Gospel?  Where do we find the Gospel?
  • Why is it important for Paul to remind the Corinthians about the Gospel?
  • How did the Gospel come to the Corinthians?  Where did Paul get it from?  How does the Gospel spread today?

Other passages to consider: Matt 10:22; John 3:16-18; 10:26-29; Rom 1:16; 1 Cor 1:17-25; 11:23; Phil 1:6; 1 Thess 2:13; 2 Pet 1:12-15

Digging Deeper:

  • What should our response/relationship to the Gospel look like?
  • In what ways can a church get distracted from the Gospel?
  • Why do Christians never outgrow the Gospel?  How can I keep the Gospel central in my life?
  • How is our salvation completed and also still in process?

Let Us Worship in a Fitting and Orderly Way

February 14, 2019
By Pastor Jathan

Let Us Worship in a Fitting and Orderly Way

1 Corinthians 14:26-33,39-40

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • What reasons does Paul give for our worship to be fitting and orderly?
  • In vv27-35, Paul gives commands regarding three groups of people – who are these different groups?
  • For these three groups, the commands have to do with what kind of activity in the church?  What kinds of attitudes/actions are needed from everyone involved?

Other passages to consider: Ps 29:1-2; 96:1-9; 1 Cor 11; 14:1-5; 1 Thess 5:12-22; Heb 12:18-29; 1 Pet 5:5-7; 1 Jn 4:1-6

Digging Deeper:

  • How does disorder in the gatherings hinder the church being built up?
  • Are there ways the gatherings of AGC could better demonstrate order and humility?
  • How does disorder in church gatherings reflect poorly on God?  What other traits would fail to glorify God?
  • What qualities should our services be marked by to reflect the character/glory of God?

God Works through His Word

February 07, 2019
By Pastor Jathan

God Works through His Word

1 Corinthians 14:20-25

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • How does Paul say the Corinthians were thinking?  Did his assessment match how they viewed themselves?  How can I mature in my thinking?
  • What event is Paul referring to in v21?  What effect did the foreign tongues have on God’s people in that case?
  • What are the two scenarios described in vv23-25?  What are the results?

Other passages to consider: Deut 28:49-50; Ps 19:7-11; Isa 28:1-13; Jn 3:1-8; 1 Pet 1:23-2:3; Rom 10:9-17; 2 Tim 3:14-4:5; Heb 4:7-13

Digging Deeper:

  • How does God use His Word in the hearts of people?
  • Why would the way the Corinthians were practicing tongues further alienate unbelievers?
  • To what do churches look instead of the Word of God to bring life and change?
  • What would it look like for the gift of prophecy to be prevalent at AGC?

Growing Together into Christ

January 03, 2019
By Pastor Jathan

Growing Together into Christ

Ephesians 4:11-16

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • What picture does Paul give for the church in this passage?  What parts of the body are identified?
  • How many times does the text speak of the body growing or being built up?  Why would God mention it so often?
  • What does growth in the church look like?  What is it contrasted with?

Other passages to consider: Matt 16:13-18; John 15:1-17; Acts 20:28-32; 1 Cor 12:12-13:7; Eph 2:11-22; 3:20-4:16; Col 1:15-20; 1 Pet 4:7-11

Digging Deeper:

  • How does God intend the church to grow?
  • How does the text emphasize corporate growth rather than just individual?  What does this say about the importance of involvement in the life of the church?
  • What does it mean to grow up into Christ?
  • Does your current commitment to the church match God’s intention?  How can you be more connected to the body?

Love Doesn’t Give Up: Loving in light of the power and promise of God

November 16, 2018
By Pastor Jathan

Love Doesn’t Give Up: Loving in light of the power and promise of God  -1 Corinthians 13:7

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • What does it look like to love according to v7?
  • How could v7 be misunderstood or misapplied?
  • How can I possibly love like this?

Other passages to consider: Ps 103; Rom 5:1-8; 8:22-39; 1 Cor 13:1-7; Phil 1:9-11; 2 Tim 2:8-10; 1 Pet 1:3-9; 1 John 4:7-12  

Digging Deeper:

  • How does God’s providence help you patiently love those around you?
  • As a believer in Christ, what is your inheritance?  How does this living hope empower you to take risks in loving others?
  • Who in your life are you tempted to give up loving?  What can you do to help you persevere in love?
  • How does this kind of love in v7 bring glory to God?

Love Doesn’t Do That

November 08, 2018
By Pastor Jathan

Love Doesn’t Do That – 1 Corinthians 13:4b-6

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • How have the Corinthians acted in the unloving ways described in vv4b-6?
  • What do these unloving actions do to the health of a church and its ability to glorify God?
  • How do these unloving actions manifest themselves in congregations today?  How can a church put off these actions?

Other passages to consider: Mark 10:45; John 3:30; Rom 12:21; 1 Cor 1:26-31; 3:1-4; 4:6-7; 5:6-8; 6:6-8; 10:23-24; 11:21-22; 12:14-27; 2 Cor 5:19; Gal 2:20; 1 Tim 2:5-6

Digging Deeper:

  • How would you summarize these negative actions?
  • How could love help prevent you from sinning in these areas?
  • Are you acting in any of these unloving ways?  If so, what do you need to do?
  • What would be the effect of a church that didn’t treat each other this way, but instead truly served one another in love?

An Essential Element of our Church

October 25, 2018
By Pastor Jathan

An Essential Element of our Church – 1 Corinthians 13:1-3

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • What are the essential elements of a church?
  • How does Chapter 13 relate to Chapters 12 and 14?
  • What examples have we seen so far of the Corinthians being unloving toward each other?

Other passages to consider: Matt 22:34-40; John 13:31-35; 15:1-17; Rom 5:1-8; 8:31-39; 1 Cor 13; Gal 2:20; Eph 3:14-21; 4:11-17; 4:30-5:2; Col 3:12-14; 2 Thess 1:3; 1 Tim 1:5; 1 Jn 4:7-21

Digging Deeper:

  • Can service be given without love?
  • Which is more important: giftedness or love?  Why?
  • What are signs of a lack of love in a church?
  • Where does love come from?  How can I grow in love?

Every Member of Christ’s Body is Needed

September 22, 2018
By Pastor Jathan

Every Member of Christ’s Body is Needed –

1 Corinthians 12:12-26

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • What wrong views of fellow believers was happening at Corinth?
  • What are some small, unnoticeable parts of your body that are very important?
  • How is the church hindered when its members aren’t present or participating?

Other passages to consider: Isa 32:15; 44:3; Ezek 39:29; Joel 2:28-29; Acts 2:17; 1 Cor 10:17; Gal 3:27-28; Eph 2:13-22; 4:1-16

Digging Deeper:

  • How are you affected when one of your body parts is injured or missing?
  • What might be your function in the Body of Christ?
  • How do the truths of this passage relate to committing to church membership?
  • How can we exercise care for one another in the Body of Christ?

The Marvelous Diversity of Oneness

September 14, 2018
By Pastor Jathan

The Marvelous Diversity of Oneness –

1 Corinthians 12:4-11

Preparing my heart for the sermon:

  • Why does Paul reference the Trinity in vv4-6?
  • What is significant about Paul calling spiritual gifts – gifts of grace?
  • What is the purpose of spiritual gifts? 

Other passages to consider: Joel 2:28-29; Romans 12:3-8; 1 Cor 12-14; Eph 4:1-16; 1 Pet 4:7-11

Digging Deeper:

  • How is God glorified through gifting his people in such a diverse way?
  • How does a diversity of gifts help strengthen the Body of Christ?
  • What is a spiritual gift?  Who gets them?
  • How should I discover and use my spiritual gift?
 
 
 
 

 

What is a spiritual person?

September 07, 2018
By Pastor Jathan

Sermon – What is a spiritual person? –

1 Corinthians 12:1-3

Preparing my heart for the sermon:

  • What is true spirituality?  How does the world miss the mark on this?
  • In what ways is Christianity confused about true spirituality?
  • How is the ministry of the Holy Spirit related to Christ?

Other passages to consider:     Deut 11:13-21; Ps 115:1-11; Isa 41:22-42:9; Matt 7:21-27; John 15:26-16:15; Acts 2:36-41; 9:1-5; Rom 1:1-4; 1 Cor 8:4-6; 12:1-14:40; Eph 2:1-5; Titus 3:1-7; 1 John 4

Digging Deeper:

  • Why does the Bible say that no one can confess that Jesus is Lord without the Holy Spirit?
  • Apart from Christ, we were all ignorant about spiritual things.  In what ways was your ignorance manifested?
  • How do vv1-3 prepare us for a discussion about spiritual gifts?
  • What does it look like to follow Jesus as Lord?  Can Jesus be your Savior without being your Lord?

Embrace God's Design for Gender Distinctions & Roles

August 23, 2018
By Pastor Jathan

Embrace God's Design for Gender Distinctions & Roles

1 Corinthians 11:2-16

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • What does the Trinity teach us about roles?
  • How does Creation point to God's design for authority in the church and home?
  • What happens when churches and homes do not follow God's design for gender roles?

Other passages to consider - Gen 1:26-27; 2:18-23; Gen 3:16; Ps 8; Rom 1:24-27; 1 Cor 15:28,49; 2 Cor 3:18; Eph 1:22-23; 4:15-16; 5:23; Col 1:18; 2:19; 1 Tim 2:11-14

Digging Deeper:

  • How does Creation point to men and women's interdependence?
  • In what ways might a church fail to maintain gender distinctions & roles?
  • How does embracing God's design for gender bring glory to his name?
  • What unique gifts and strengths do women bring to a church and home? 

Gathering to Worship God

August 16, 2018
By Pastor Jathan

Sermon – Gathering to Worship God – 1 Peter 2:4-12

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • What does it mean to worship God?  How are we able to approach God?
  • Why does Peter say that we are being built into a spiritual building?
  • What activities does the Bible say we should be doing when we gather to worship?

Other passages to consider: Ex 19:3-6; 2 Ch 6:12-21; Ps 96; Isa 43:1-7; Acts 2:42-47; Rom 12:1-2; 1 Cor 14:24-26; Eph 5:19-20; Phil 4:18; Col 3:16; 1 Tim 2:8; 4:13; Heb 10:19-25; 12:18-29; 13:15-16; Rev 8:3.

Digging Deeper:

  • How can our society’s consumer mindsight distort gathering to worship?
  • Is worship optional?  Why or why not?
  • How can we prepare our hearts to gather to worship?
  • In what ways does gathering corporately help us to worship God?

The Gathering of the Local Church

August 10, 2018
By Pastor Jathan

Sermon – The Gathering of the Local Church – 1 Peter 2:4-8

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • Why do we gather as a local church?
  • What image does Peter give for the church?  What do we learn about the church from this picture?
  • How is Christ’s relationship to the church described?

Other passages to consider: Ex 19:3-6; Ps 96; 118:22-24; Isa 8:11-15; 28:14-16; 43:1-7; Matt 16:13-20; 21:42-46; Acts 4:8-12; 1 Cor 3:16-17; 14:24-25; Eph 2:13-22.

Digging Deeper:

  • What does it mean to worship God?  How can we do this?
  • In what ways does gathering corporately help us worship God and bring glory to him?
  • Should church services be geared toward unbelievers?  If not, how could God still use the gathering to bring salvation to the lost?
  • What should people learn about God from attending a gathering of AGC?

God's Church, God's Glory

March 09, 2018
By Pastor Jathan

Sermon – God’s Church, God’s Glory – 1 Corinthians 3:5-17

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • What is the Church?  What makes up the Church?
  • What metaphors does Paul use in this text to describe the Church?
  • Why does God point out that the Holy Spirit dwells in them corporately?

Other passages to consider – 1 Chron 29; Matt 16:13-20; 1 Cor 1:10-18; Eph 4:1-16; Col 3:5-17; 1 Tim 3:14-15; 1 Pet 2:4-12

Digging Deeper:

  • Why should we not put Christian leaders on “a pedestal”?
  • What standard will God use in judging how His Church was built?
  • What does this passage have to do with divisions in the church?
  • How does this text impact your view of Gospel ministry & the church?

United Around Christ

January 19, 2018
By Pastor Jathan

Sermon – United Around Christ – 1 Corinthians 1:10-17a

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • Where does the believers’ unity come from?
  • What are common sources of division within the church?
  • What should unity look like in the church?

Other passages to consider: Ps 133; Matt 5:21-24; 7:1-5; 18:15; John 17; Rom 13:8-15:7; 1 Cor 12:12-13:13; Eph 4:1-6; Philippians 2:1-11.

Digging Deeper:

  • Why is unity important in the church? What is this unity centered on?
  • What within Christendom can divert our focus away from Christ?
  • How does the Gospel help us maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace?
  • Are there any people within the Body of Christ that I need to be reconciled to?

Remember God's Blessing to Us in Christ

January 13, 2018
By Pastor Jathan

Sermon – Remember God’s Blessings to Us in Christ – 1 Corinthians 1:1-9

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • Compare 1:1-9 with the introductions to Paul’s other letters. What is similar and different about this one to the Corinthians?
  • Three times in this passage, Paul speaks about “called by God”. What is significant about this verb?
  • What do you learn about the church from this text?

Other passages to consider: John 10:1-10; Acts 9:1-19; 18:1-17; Rom 8:29-30; Eph 1:1-14; 3:10, 21; 5:25-27; Phil 1:6

Digging Deeper:

  • How does remembering God’s blessings help us not sin?
  • To whom does the church belong? Why does the church exist?
  • What does this passage teach us about what the Christian life entails?
  • How do God’s blessings come to us? Explain.

We Are in This Together!

September 13, 2017
By Pastor Jathan

Sermon – We are in this together! – Colossians 4:7-18

Preparing your heart for the sermon:

  • Why does Paul close his letter by mentioning so many people by name?
  • What do the metaphors for the Church teach us about what our church life should look like?
  • Why do we refer to the outreach and missions of AGC as “Ministry Partners”?

Other passages to consider: Jn. 17; Col. 1:24-2:3; 1 Cor 12:12-27; Eph. 4:1-16; 1 Th. 2:1-8

Digging Deeper:

  • How does the Gospel empower us to love and serve one another? – Phil 1:27-2:11
  • How is God glorified as we do the “one-another’s” of Scripture?
  • Why are we often hesitant to share our lives with each other?
  • How is God calling me to serve the Body? Who could I invite to serve with me?

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