Give Like God: How His Generosity Leads to Our Own

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Somewhere along the line, Christmas became about getting. Getting new toys, getting new clothes, getting all the things you want to buy for yourself but feel like you shouldn’t–it seems like there’s an awful lot of getting going on around the holidays.

But what’s ironic is that the very first Christmas actually wasn’t about getting at all. It was about giving. It was about the God of the universe choosing to give the most important gift of all–himself–to humanity. And about all that came with that incredible gift.

So this Christmas, we’re going to follow God’s lead and talk a little about giving. What does it look like to embody the true spirit of Christmas through giving of ourselves and specifically our resources? This series takes four weeks to look at the topic of generosity.

Teachings

Week 1: What Life is Not About
Kent Bateman / November 25, 2018 / Luke 12:13-21


Week 2: The Heart Behind It
Kent Bateman / December 2, 2018 / 1 Chronicles 29:10-18 & Acts 4:32-35


Week 3: The Means to Do It
Kent Bateman / December 9, 2018 / Deuteronomy 24:19-22

Vision Series 2018: Who We Are & Where We're Headed

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Ever since our church began, we’ve said that we desire to be a Jesus-centered family on mission. But what do those words mean, exactly? And how are we doing at achieving that goal? Just like with anything, it’s worth periodically circling back and taking stock of who we are and where we’re headed.

This series takes three weeks to examine our vision and mission as a church, and then ask the question each week, how are we doing on this?

Teachings

Week 1: Jesus-Centered
Kent Bateman / November 4, 2018 / 1 Corinthians 15:1-5


Week 2: Family
Jeff Hsiang / November 11, 2018 / Genesis 1-3

The God of Sex: The Lies We're Told & the Truth We're Offered

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Contrary to popular belief, God is not anti-sex or anti-sexuality. Sex was actually His idea to begin with. The human body, sexual organs, sexual desire, sexual attraction–all thought up by God himself. 

And he designed it with a purpose. More than simply recreation for grown-ups, and more than an exchange of goods or services between consenting adults, sex was actually meant to accomplish something. It has a purpose. It was meant to achieve something even greater than itself. But in order to discover what that purpose is, we have to be willing to take sex off the pedestal it's on. Then, and only then, can we discover what it was meant to be all along.

This series takes eight weeks to unpack sex, sexuality, and related topics.

Teachings:

Week 1: Dethroning Aphrodite
Kent Bateman / September 9, 2018 / Romans 1:21-25


Week 2: Sex & the Bible
Kent Bateman / September 16, 2018 / Various passages


Week 3: Sex & Identity
Kent Bateman / September 23, 2018 / 2 Corinthians 5:14-21


Q&A Podcast: Masturbation, Modesty, Role-Playing & More
Kent Bateman / September 27, 2018


Week 4: Sex & Singleness
Thor Sawin / September 30, 2018 / Matthew 19:7-12


Week 5: Sex & Marriage
Kent Bateman / October 7, 2018 / 1 Corinthians 7:1-5


Week 6: Sex & Dating
Kent Bateman / October 14, 2018 / 1 Corinthians 6:12-14, 18-20


Q&A Podcast: The “One,” Baby-Making, Divorce, & More
Kent Bateman / October 18, 2018


Week 7: Sex & Porn
Kent Bateman / October 21, 2018 / Matthew 5:27-30


Week 8: Sex & Healing
Kent Bateman / October 28, 2018 / 2 Samuel 13:1-20

Ephesians: How God Puts Things Back Together

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The letter to the Ephesian church is Paul’s masterpiece. In it, he works out his understanding of who God is, what God has done, and what he is doing in and through the Church. Much of that could be summed up in his statement in chapter one, “a plan...to unite all things in him, things in heaven and on earth.” 

In other words, God is putting things back together. God is taking all that is broken and lost, and piecing it back together. Through the life, death and resurrection of his son Jesus, God is forming his people into a reflection of who he is to the world around them. Starting with theological concepts and then working them out into practical instructions, Paul gives us a comprehensive picture of what belonging to Jesus is and what that generates in a group of people who live in light of it. 

This series takes 17 weeks to work through the letter to the Ephesians and understand what it means for us today. 

Teachings

Week 1: Getting Acquainted
Kent Bateman / May 13, 2018 / Ephesians 1:1-2


Week 2: When the Blessings Come Down…
Kent Bateman / May 20, 2018 / Ephesians 1:3-14


Week 3: …The Prayers Go Up
Kent Bateman & Marcus Williamson / May 27, 2018 / Ephesians 1:15-23


Week 4: The Walking Dead
Marcus Williamson / June 3, 2018 / Ephesians 2:1-10


Week 5: Racial Harmony
Antony Frederick / June 10, 2018 / Ephesians 2:11-22


Week 6: Through, Not Just To
Kent Bateman / June 17, 2018 / Ephesians 3:1-13


Week 7: A Prayer for Power
Jeff Hsiang / June 24, 2018 / Ephesians 3:14-21


Week 8: Expectations & Realities of Church
Kent Bateman / July 1, 2018 / Ephesians 4:1-16


Week 9: How to Become Who You Already Are
Tim Olson / July 8, 2018 / Ephesians 4:17-24


Week 10: How We Treat Each Other
Kent Bateman / July 15, 2018 / Ephesians 4:25-5:2


Week 11: How We Think About Sex
Kent Bateman / July 22, 2018 / Ephesians 5:1-14


Week 12: Spirits, the Spirit, & Spiritual Songs
Kent Bateman / July 29, 2018 / Ephesians 5:15-20


Week 13: Wives, Husbands, & the Gospel
Jeff Hsiang / August 5, 2018 / Ephesians 5:21-33


Week 14: Children, Parents, & the Gospel
Kent Bateman / August 12, 2018 / Ephesians 6:1-4


Week 15: Roman Slavery & Modern Implications
Kent Bateman / August 19, 2018 / Ephesians 6:5-9


Week 16: What to Wear to a War
Kent Bateman / August 26, 2018 / Ephesians 6:10-20


Week 17: Putting it All Back Together
Kent Bateman / September 2, 2018 / Ephesians 6:21-24

Adulting: Work, Finances & other Confusing Things

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Becoming an adult in today’s world can be one of the most exciting, anticipated, wonderful, confusing, disorienting, frustrating things a person goes through. All of a sudden, there’s work to go to, there’s bills to pay, there’s decisions to make–and on top of all that, there’s trying to navigate what friendships and free time look like with all the other stuff going on.

Most people feel unprepared for at least parts of adulthood, if not for adulthood in general. And some of us spend plenty of time just pretending to know what we’re doing. But if we’re honest, we’d love it if we had someone to coach us up on portions of it, and help us navigate the maze that is life as a grown-up.

Cue Adulting: Work, Finances, and other Confusing Things. This series takes four weeks to tackle some of the toughest parts of adulthood, using the opening pages of Genesis as a guide.

Teachings

Week 1: Work
Kent Bateman / April 8, 2018 / Genesis 2:1-8, 15 & Genesis 3:17b-19


Week 2: Decision-Making
Kent Bateman / April 15, 2018 / Genesis 2:15-17 & Genesis 3:1-7


Week 3: Finances
Jeff Hsiang / April 22, 2018 / Genesis 1:26-28


Week 4: What Nobody Tells You
Kent Bateman / April 29, 2018 / Selected Proverbs

Stand-Alone Teachings

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From time to time, we do stand-alone teachings that aren't a part of a larger series. Below you'll find a list of those teachings, beginning with the most recent. 

Teachings:

Jonah: World's Worst Prophet & God's Amazing Grace

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The book of Jonah has captivated and confused audiences for generation after generation. It’s often understood as “that story about a guy who got swallowed by a whale.” But truth be told, there’s so much more going on than that. At its core, Jonah is a story about a prophet who calls others to repent but refuses to repent himself. And ultimately, about a God who will go to extreme measures to try and change that about him. 

This passage takes five weeks to study the story of Jonah. 

Teachings

Follow: Becoming an Apprentice of Jesus

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What does it truly mean to follow Jesus? There are plenty of varying definitions of what a Christian is. Is it merely a 'religious preference' box that you check? Is it a prayer you pray? Is it a decision you make? Or something altogether different?

This series takes five weeks to explore what all Jesus meant when he said to his earliest disciples, and to us today, "follow me."

Teachings

Recommended Reading

If you enjoy reading and want to spend more time diving into the subjects covered in this series, here's a few books that we'd recommend:

The Truth About Christmas

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The story of the very first Christmas is a familiar one to many people: Mary, Joseph, the shepherds, the manger, and the angels. But when a story becomes familiar, it's easy to miss its significance. What was going on with Mary's pregnancy? Why would God tell Joseph to do something that would so obviously make life hard for him? And what's with the random list of names that are a part of the story?

This series takes four weeks to look at the details behind the story of the first Christmas and discern what we can learn about God and his son as a result. 

Teachings

Week 1: The Family Tree
Kent Bateman / November 26, 2017 / Matthew 1:1-17


Week 2: There’s Something About Mary
Kent Bateman / December 3, 2017 / Luke 1:26-38


Week 3: What Joseph Lost (and We Will Too)
Kent Bateman / December 10, 2017 / Matthew 1:18-25


Week 4: God With Us, to Save Us
Kent Bateman / December 17, 2017 / Matthew 1:21-23

Bible Stories: What the Old Testament is All About

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Let's face it: the Old Testament at times isn't easy to read. And however hard it often is to read, it's frequently even harder to understand, and still harder to apply. At the same time, the Old Testament contains verse upon verse of vital information for us to understand what's going in the New Testament. So how should we read and understand Old Testament narratives? Are they stories with a moral point to draw out? Are they allegories for our "spiritual" life? 

At the end of the day, what are these bible stories about, and how should we read them? This series takes five weeks to look at some of the most popular Old Testament narratives and understand what they're all about. 

Teachings

Week 1: David & Goliath
Kent Bateman / October 15, 2017 / 1 Samuel 17:41-52


Week 2: Adam & Eve
Kent Bateman / October 22, 2017 / Genesis 3:1-13, 15


Week 3: Noah & the Ark
Kent Bateman / October 29, 2017 / Selected passages from Genesis 6-9


Week 4: Abraham & Isaac
Kent Bateman / November 5, 2017 / Genesis 22:1-14


Week 5: Joseph & his Coat
Jeff Hsiang / November 12, 2017 / Selected passages from Genesis 37-50

Party Like Jesus: Meals, Celebrations, & the Heart of God

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There are all kinds of notions about who Jesus was. A Jewish teacher of the law. God in the flesh. A left-of-center teacher and philosopher. The resurrected son of God. 

But among all the popular perceptions, not many think of Jesus as a partier. However, if you take a survey of the life of Jesus, meals and celebrations were a integral part of his life. It is written about Jesus that he came "eating and drinking" (Luke 7:34). And when Jesus wasn't at parties, he was talking about them. Many of Jesus' teachings and parables have meals and celebrations at their center.

So what can we learn from Jesus' food-and-drink saturated life? How might this aspect of Jesus change the way we view God and other people? We explore those questions and more in our series, Party Like Jesus.

Teachings:

Week 1: The Best Wine
Kent Bateman / September 10, 2017 / John 2:1-11


Week 2: It’s Not My Party (and I’ll Cry if I Want To)
Kent Bateman / September 17, 2017 / Luke 15:1-2, 25-32


Week 3: The Guest List
Kent Bateman / September 24, 2017 / Luke 14:12-24


Week 4: The Party Crasher
Kent Bateman / October 1, 2017 / Luke 7:36-50


Week 5: The (Almost) Last Supper
Kent Bateman & Jeff Hsiang / October 8, 2017 / Mark 14:12-16, 22-25

Contrast Community: The Sermon on the Mount

In Jesus' famous sermon on the mount, he unpacks his picture of who his people are meant to be. Jumping from topic to topic, he explains how being a follower of Jesus impacts your morality, your ethics, your sexuality, your finances and more.

In all of it, his goal is to create a counter-cultural contrast community–a group of people who live actively in the world, but at the same time are distinct from it. We explore what it means to live a life that is both attractive and sometimes offensive to the watching world. 

In this series, we sift through Jesus' teaching on what a counter-cultural community of human beings can look like, using his sermon on the mount as a guide.

Teachings:

Week 1: Salt & Light
Kent Bateman / February 5, 2017 / Matthew 5:13-16


Week 2: The Good Kind of Goodness
Kent Bateman / March 5, 2017 / Matthew 5:17-20


Week 3: Anger, Bitterness, & Conflict
Kent Bateman / April 2, 2017 / Matthew 5:21-24


Week 4: Sex in its Context
Kent Bateman / May 7, 2017 / Matthew 5:27-30


Week 5: Loving Your Enemies
Ant Frederick / June 4, 2017 / Matthew 5:43-47


Week 6: The Choice Between God & Money
Kent Bateman / August 6, 2017 / Matthew 6:19-24


Week 7: Antidotes for Anxiety
Kent Bateman / August 13, 2017 / Matthew 6:25-34


Week 8: Do Not Judge?
Kent Bateman / August 20, 2017 / Matthew 7:1-6