THE FEAR FACTOR – PART TWO

Written by Jeremy Pate on . Posted in Youth Minister

MisplacedLast week, we began a 3-part study on how to handle fear. We took a look at the “Frozen by Fear” approach and saw that it is an unwise and unbiblical way to deal with our fears. We simply can’t “do nothing” in most scary situations and still be pleasing to God.

So let’s examine another possibility this week:

Who Do You Say That I AM?

Written by Kyle Rye on . Posted in Pulpit Minster

IAMimageIn Matthew 16:15, Jesus asked His disciples the most important question man will ever answer. He asked, “Who do you say that I am?” Peter answered correctly in the following verse when he said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God” (Matthew 16:16). Peter’s response was celebrated by Jesus and identified as the “rock” on which Jesus would build His church (Matthew 16:17-18). Why was so much emphasis placed on Peter’s confession of Jesus’ identity? Because it matters who we say Jesus is.

THE FEAR FACTOR – PART ONE

Written by Jeremy Pate on . Posted in Youth Minister

Frozen-by-Fear bcocHave you ever been in a situation that scared you to the point that you didn’t know what to do or how to handle it? Have you ever allowed fear to control your decision-making? Have you ever wondered what to do when you are scared to do anything? Maybe some of these situations sound familiar:

“I’ve lied to my parents about something, and I know I need to make it right, but I’m afraid of what might happen if I tell them the truth.”

The Great I Am

Written by Kyle Rye on . Posted in Pulpit Minster

bcoc burning bush webIn Exodus 3, we read the story of Moses and the burning bush. At this point in his life, Moses had been away from Egypt for approximately forty years. You may remember that Moses thrived in Egypt. He lived in the house of Pharaoh. He was raised among kings in a royal environment. He grew up as an Egyptian even though he shared the same ethnicity as those who were slaves. However, he eventually grew sympathetic toward his kinsmen, and, at one point, he killed an Egyptian who he witnessed abusing a Hebrew slave. As a result of his actions, Moses fled Egypt as a fugitive, knowing that his murderous deed was not as secretive as he initially assumed.

Dear Paul . . .

Written by Jeremy Pate on . Posted in Youth Minister

DearPaulwebTucked into the back half of the New Testament is a one-chapter letter written by the apostle Paul. The letter is only 25 verses, and it is curiously unconcerned with presenting theological or doctrinal concepts, church instruction/correction, or a treatise on any specific issue.

This letter was, in fact, written to one person: a Christian brother named Philemon.

YOU MIGHT BE A HYPOCRITE IF…

Written by Kyle Rye on . Posted in Pulpit Minster

hypocriteThe term “hypocrite” originally referred to an actor who pretended to be something he was not. In its original context, the word “hypocrite” was not a derogatory title; however, it evolved over time so that it came to be associated with dishonesty, a lack of genuineness, and contradictory behavior. It is this latter understanding of hypocrisy that the Bible utilizes.

The ME In Blasphemy

Written by Kyle Rye on . Posted in Pulpit Minster

Reflection

In Colossians 3:8 Paul identified blasphemy as one of the sinful behaviors that Christians are to “put off.” It is identified in a list that included anger, wrath, malice, and filthy language. These latter behaviors are familiar to us, but blasphemy is a behavior that is somewhat foreign to our twenty-first century culture since the term is rarely used. So, what is blasphemy and how might we commit it?

DIVINE DETOURS

Written by Kyle Rye on . Posted in Pulpit Minster

Detours are frustrating. Detours are stressful. Detours are burdensome. When you are traveling in unfamiliar or unfrequented territory and you come across a detour it feels like a tremendous setback. It interrupts your direction, it interrupts your schedule, and, if you’re like me, it interrupts your blood pressure. But detours are often necessary. For example, detours are utilized when dangerous conditions are present. You may be forced to detour because a bridge is washed away or debris is obstructing the roadway. Detours are utilized when improvements are underway. You may be forced to detour because construction crews are working to repair or build better transportation systems. Detours may interfere with your life but they typically exist for a reason.

THE ANCHOR OF HOPE

Written by Kyle Rye on . Posted in Pulpit Minster

Hope articleWhat is hope? The way the world tends to use the word “hope,” it comes across as if it is just a “wish” or a “desire,” something you want but lack certainty of whether or not it will come to fruition.

For example, a student might say, “I hope that I pass my Calculus class.” What that student is really saying is that he wants to receive a passing grade, but he is not certain that he did well enough to achieve a passing grade. Or, a child, like Micah, might say, “I hope that I get a Minnie Mouse car for Christmas.” What that child is really saying is that she wants to receive a $300 miniature, drivable car as a gift at Christmas, but she is not certain that Santa will fulfill her request.

All such hope-oriented statements demonstrate a fear that the final outcome may not match the desired outcome. As a result, such statements reveal that the world’s definition of hope lacks certainty and security.

WELCOME TO “THE KINGDOM”

Written by Kyle Rye on . Posted in Pulpit Minster

2017KingdomAdwebarticleOn July 4, 1776 the thirteen American colonies formally announced their independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain when the Second Continental Congress signed the Declaration of Independence. That was the last day that the United States of America was under the rule of a king. As a result, the concept of a “kingdom” is lost on our society because most of us do not know what is like to serve a king or live under a monarchial reign.

There are wonderful blessings that come from living under a democratic government but one of the unfortunate consequences is a diminished appreciation for the concept of a kingdom. And the only reason this is worth noting is because kingdom terminology permeated the teaching of Jesus. No fewer than twelve of His parables were used to describe the “kingdom.” No fewer than 87 verses among the four Gospels quote Him as using the term “kingdom.” In fact, when Jesus began His preaching ministry, He proclaimed, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matthew 4:17; cf. 4:23; 9:35; Mark 1:15 Luke 4:43; 8:1), and then He commissioned His disciples to proclaim this same message (Luke 9:2, 60).