Sermon
Guides

Each week we'll have updated content for our Kid's,
Youth, and Adult sermon guides. 

November 29th Sermon Guides

KidsCity

Click here to watch our Kid City video that corresponds to this sermon guide. https://vimeo.com/showcase/7026436

Bible passage: Luke 2:25-32
Story point: HOPE - We can have hope in Jesus Christ as our Savior.
Key passage: Luke 2:26 And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord's Christ.

Younger Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills

Key Passage Activity
Supplies: Paper, pen/pencil
Write: the key passage, Luke 2:26, on a piece of paper and have the kids repeat it after you. Erase or cross out one word at a time until the verse is memorized.
Say: Simeon had been promised by God through the Holy Spirit that he would live to see Jesus. Throughout his life he was patient, did what was right, and held on to hope, knowing God would keep His promise. In the next verses we will see that God was true to His promise, and Simeon met Jesus.

Bible Story Questions
Read Luke 2:25 - 32 and listen to Mr. Brandon’s lesson
  1. Who was Simeon? (He was an Israelite who lived a righteous life. God has promised him that he would meet Jesus.)
  2. Do you think that Simeon waited for a short or a long time? (The Bible doesn’t tell us how old Simeon was, and it doesn’t tell us how long he waited, but we know that he waited and did not give up. He trusted in God and in God’s promises.)
  3. What is something that we Christians hope for? (Our hope is in Jesus Christ. It is knowing that he lived, died, and rose again and that one day, we Christians will be in heaven with him.

Activity: Hope Potato (Hot Potato)
Supplies: A ball, or potato, or anything to pass around in a circle.
Pass around the item chosen, and play some Christmas music, whoever ends up with the item at the end, say something that gives you hope.
Ex. The hope you have in Jesus as our savior, hope in a wonderful Christmas season because we love each other.
Say: Simeon waited years for Jesus, we are so blessed to have been born in a time where we don’t have to wait for Him, He has already come! Go throughout this week remembering the great hope we have in Jesus.

Older Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills

Key Passage Activity
Supplies: Paper, pen/pencil
Write: the key passage, Luke 2:26, on a piece of paper and have the kids repeat it after you. Erase or cross out one word at a time until the verse is memorized.
Say: Simeon had been promised by God through the Holy Spirit that he would live to see Jesus. Throughout his life he was patient, did what was right, and held on to hope, knowing God would keep His promise. In the next verses we will see that God was true to His promise, and Simeon met Jesus.

Bible Story Questions
Read Luke 2:25 - 32 and listen to Mr. Brandon’s lesson
  1. Who was Simeon? (He was an Israelite who lived a righteous life. God has promised him that he would meet Jesus.)
  2. Do you think that Simeon waited for a short or a long time? (The Bible doesn’t tell us how old Simeon was, and it doesn’t tell us how long he waited, but we know that he waited and did not give up. He trusted in God and in God’s promises.)
  3. What is something that we Christians hope for? (Our hope is in Jesus Christ. It is knowing that he lived, died, and rose again and that one day, we Christians will be in heaven with him.)

Activity: Hope Potato (Hot Potato)
Supplies: A ball, or potato, or anything to pass around in a circle.
Pass around the item chosen, and play some Christmas music, whoever ends up with the item at the end, say something that gives you hope.
Ex. The hope you have in Jesus as our savior, hope in a wonderful Christmas season because we love each other.
Say: Simeon waited years for Jesus, we are so blessed to have been born in a time where we don’t have to wait for Him, He has already come! Go throughout this week remembering the great hope we have in Jesus!
____
Gospel Student Ministry Notes
Scripture: Luke 2:25-32
Advent Week 1: Hope

Intro/Overview
Well, it's official, the holiday season is upon us. This is such a wonderful (and busy) time of year. We are all so excited to decorate our homes, make plans with friends and family, take time away from work, shop for loved ones, etc. There is so much to be done and so much to look forward to at this time of year. But as believers in Jesus Christ, we have a hope that transcends any holiday; we anticipate something so much greater than any present can offer us.

This week marks the beginning of the Advent season. The word Advent means “coming” or “arrival.” For Christians, the advent season marks the birth of Christ (His first coming) but during this season we also eagerly await the second coming of Jesus. This first Sunday of Advent means hope. Hope is really synonymous with the Christian faith. As sinful human beings that are destined for death and destruction, we are utterly hopeless apart from Christ Jesus. However, He has given us reason to believe and to hope.

In Luke chapter 2, we find the birth of Jesus Christ recorded. The nation of Israel, God’s chosen people, had been waiting for this promised Messiah. God sent His prophets and given the people His written word and foretold of the Savior to come. He had promised them deliverance and salvation through His chosen One. Thankfully, God is a God that keeps His promises!! So here in Luke chapter 2, we find a man named Simeon who had been told by God that he would not die before seeing the Savior. So, upon hearing of Jesus’ birth and seeing Him in the temple, Simeon knew that God had again stayed true to His word. Simeon takes the child Jesus in his arms and blesses Him, knowing that He is fulfillment of God’s promises and the hope of His people.

There are a lot of things that we can place our hope in. Some of us hope in money, for some of us it is our family/friends, for others we hope in our performance or the way that others view us. If we consider Christmas time, a lot of us are hoping for what we will receive on Christmas morning. But as those who have been redeemed by the blood of Jesus Christ, our hope is ultimately in Him. This hope isn’t simply tied to a certain time of year, or any of our earthly circumstances, we are hopeful and assured of what Christ has accomplished for us through His life, death, and resurrection. And as His people, we eagerly await His second coming, when His glory is revealed to all of creation. He is our Hope.

Discussion Questions
Read Luke 2:25-32
Reflect on these verses


These questions are meant to generate conversations with your students.
  1. This Sunday marks the beginning of the advent season. The word advent means “coming” or “arrival.” As Christians, what are we anticipating or waiting for during the advent season?
  2. The theme for this first Sunday is hope. What are some things that you hope for consistently? Are these things that line up with the will and word of God?
  3. As Christians, our hope is in Christ Jesus. How is hoping in Him different from hoping in the things of the world?
  4. How can you live out this hope consistently? Are there some people in your life that you can share this hope with?

End your time together by praying as a family. Pray specifically for the things that you’ve discussed (and confessed), pray for each other, and pray for our world as we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 crisis and the racial and political tensions currently facing our nation.

Parents:
  • Consider ways to leverage the time that you have with your students. How can you utilize this time to help them see Jesus/own the mission?
  • In what ways can you love/serve your neighbors? How can you show Christ to your extended (and immediate) family during the holiday season? Think of some practical (and safe!) ways that you and your student(s) can be the hands and feet of Jesus at this time.
_____
Sermon Notes: Brenton Lehman
Title
: Hope: The Spirit of Advent
Text: Luke 2:25-35
Campus: Rivermont

Image 1 - Click Here
Image 2: Light and Dark - Click Here
Image 3: God and Humanity - Click Here
Image 4: Slavery in Egypt - Click Here

How long, O God?

Image 5: Sinai_Epiphany - Click Here

How long, O God?

Image 6: Exile - Click Here

How long, O Lord?

“How long, Lord?
Will you forget us forever?
How long will you hide your face from us?
How long will we store up anxious concerns within us, agony in our minds every day?
How long will our enemies dominate us?
Consider us and answer, Lord our God. Restore brightness to our eyes; otherwise we will sleep in death. Our enemies are saying, “We have triumphed over them,” and our foes are rejoicing because we are trembling.
But we have trusted in your faithful love; our hearts will rejoice in your deliverance in the past. We will sing to the Lord because you have treated us generously. So, we will wait on you.”
Psalm 13

“There was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon. This man was righteous and devout, looking forward to Israel’s consolation, and the Holy Spirit was on him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he saw the Lord’s Messiah. Guided by the Spirit, he entered the temple. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to perform for him what was customary under the law, “
Luke 2:25-27

“Simeon took him up in his arms, praised God, and said,
Now, Master, you can dismiss your servant in peace,
as you promised.
For my eyes have seen your salvation.
You have prepared it
in the presence of all peoples—
a light for revelation to the Gentiles
and glory to your people Israel.”
Luke 2:28-32

“Then Simeon blessed them and told his mother Mary, ‘Indeed, this child is destined to cause the fall and rise of many in Israel and to be a sign that will be opposed—and a sword will pierce your own soul—that the thoughts[d] of many hearts may be revealed.’”
Luke 2:34-35

Where are you?
Who told you?
What have you done?


Where are you? Am I dislocated from God, in some way estranged from him?
Who told you? What voices other than God’s have I been listening to?
What have you done? What have we done with Jesus? God in the flesh? Who is he to me? Is it time to stop admiring (or rejecting) him from afar?

The story of Advent means - Jesus has come close to us. Will we not also come near to him?

The spirit of Advent: Waiting in Hope

The people of God in waiting, are to be fervent in prayer, filled with the Holy Spirit, and marked by hope. Because prayer is the practice of the hopeful.
_____
Sermon Notes: Preston Burling
Title:
Advent: Hope in Christ
Text: Luke 2:25-32
Campus: College Hill

Image: The Seasons - Click Here

This calendar becomes a powerful tool for discipleship. A tool that is going to help us both Remember and Retell the gospel of Jesus Christ.

“There was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon. This man was righteous and devout, looking forward to Israel’s consolation, and the Holy Spirit was on him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he saw the Lord’s Messiah. Guided by the Spirit, he entered the temple. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to perform for him what was customary under the law, Simeon took him up in his arms, praised God, and said, ‘Now, Master, you can dismiss your servant in peace, as you promised.  For my eyes have seen your salvation. You have prepared it in the presence of all peoples — a light for revelation to the Gentiles and glory to your people Israel.’”
Luke 2:25-32

This morning, what are you placing your hope in?

We often tend to place hopes in things that offer us safety and security

Hope bridges the gap between where you are now and where you will experience peace.

We need hope in Christ now in a way that will sustain us beyond the Christmas season.

What if our seasons here on earth become moments that propel us into a deeper, more grounded, and relentless hope in a future Kingdom?

  1. That Jesus’ has come, God incarnate, to call his people into a new Kingdom.

  1. That Jesus’ has come, God incarnate, to call his people into a new Kingdom.
  2. A triumphal coming of our king is coming, once and for all, to redeem his saints for all-time.

  1. Simeon is a common Jewish man without an extraordinary story
  2. Simeon, an un-extraordinary man by worldly terms, was meant to represent common Israel in their hope that awaited the coming of the extraordinary - the Messiah.
  3. Comfort endures when our hope is realized
  4. The anticipation of our hope is complete in the person of Jesus

“It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he saw the Lord’s Messiah. Guided by the Spirit, he entered the temple. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to perform for him what was customary under the law, Simeon took him up in his arms, praised God, and said, ‘Now, Master, you can dismiss your servant in peace, as you promised.’”
Luke 2:26-29

5. Simeon’s hope was complete yet anticipatory of the future Salvation of God’s people

What kind of work do we need to let the Spirit do in our hearts in order to allow our material hopes to be properly submitted to our ultimate hope in Christ?

May the Spirit drive us to a comforting hope in the object of our faith - Jesus Christ.

____

November 22nd Sermon Guides

Gospel Student Ministry Notes
Scripture:
1 Peter 5:7-14
Peter’s Final Encouragement: Firm in the Faith

Intro/Overview
So, as we have studied through the first letter of the Apostle Peter, we have found him writing to believers in exile and consistently instructing them and encouraging them to live with great faith and to lead lives of humility, hope, and holiness. Peter has done an excellent job of continuously preaching the Gospel and pointing us towards Jesus. Peter has not only encouraged the body of Christ, but he has spent time instructing and exhorting the elders and leaders within the body of Christ as well. The purpose of this letter is to remind us of our purpose and our responsibility to live holy and set apart from the world; to demonstrate the supremacy and majesty of Christ by the way that we live. As Peter ends this letter, he exhorts these believers to lean and depend on God, and to flee from temptation.

In chapter 5, verse 7, Peter says that we can cast all of our anxieties on him [Christ]. Now this would imply that anxiety and fear are consistent with the human experience, in other words it is to be expected. However, as the people of God, we have our own anxieties and fears associated with following Christ. If you recall, this letter is being written to exiles, and they more than likely faced a lot of hostility and persecution. This undoubtedly leads to anxiety, hesitation and fear. But Peter reminds his readers to cast all of their burdens and concerns upon Him [Christ Jesus], why? Because He cares for His people. What a great comfort to know that we have such a loving and caring heavenly Father (and He demonstrates that love/care in the most incredible way, the cross).

Peter then warns his readers, as he reminds them of the great adversary they face in Satan. He says be “sober-minded (v. 8),” the devil is on the prowl like a lion searching for those that he can devour. That is a constant reality, one we must never neglect or overlook. Satan seeks to sift us like wheat (Luke 22:31). But Peter encourages believers to resist the devil and stand firm in the faith. It is only through faith in Christ that we are delivered and victorious. It is not based upon our own strength and ability, but succeeding in fleeing temptation is only by the gift of grace and power of the Spirit.

Finally Peter tells us that this is suffering, and that this is the life of every believer. In verse 9 he says that suffering is the experience for Chrisitians throughout the world. In other words, we can expect suffering and tribulation if we are going to live for Jesus. However, we are compelled to live for Him because of the glory that awaits us. In verse 10 Peter says that it is God who will restore, confirm, and strengthen us. This is a great reminder of that God that we serve and belong to. As those living in “exile,” even in the year 2020, we will be tempted and we will face trials. As His people, we must be totally dependent upon God at every moment in order to stand firm in our faith.

Discussion Questions
Read 1 Peter 5:7-14
Reflect on these verses

These questions are meant to generate conversations with your students.
  1. The letter of 1 Peter has been full of some wonderful instruction and encouragement. What are some of the major themes that you have taken away from 1 Peter?
  2. In verse 7, Peter tells believers to cast all of their anxieties on God. What are some things that make you anxious? Have you taken these burdens and fears to God?
  3. We are told to be sober-minded and alert, constantly aware of Satan who is on the prowl looking for someone to devour. In what ways have you felt tempted? And how can we be successful in resisting temptation?
  4. Suffering is to be expected for the life of the believer. In what ways are Christians suffering around the world? Have you experienced suffering in any way because of your faith?
  5. What is it that motivates us to endure suffering (look at verse 10)?

End your time together by praying as a family. Pray specifically for the things that you’ve discussed (and confessed), pray for each other, and pray for our world as we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 crisis and the racial and political tensions currently facing our nation.

Parents
  • Consider ways to leverage the time that you have with your students. How can you utilize this time to help them see Jesus/own the mission?
  • In what ways can you love/serve your neighbors? Think of some practical (and safe!) ways that you and your student(s) can be the hands and feet of Jesus at this time.
__________________________________________________________________

Sermon Notes: Brenton Lehman
Title:
Peaceful, Non-Anxious Presence
Text: 1 Peter 5:6-14 (CSB)
Campus: Rivermont

Faithfulness to Jesus in exile means being a peaceful, non-anxious presence in highly anxious spaces.

“ Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, so that he may exalt you at the proper time,”
1 Peter 5:6.

  1. Be humble.

Proximity to Jesus breeds humility and a peace, or contentment, with who we are. So we’re relieved of the stress and anxiety of needing to prove or defend ourselves.

“casting all your cares on him, because he cares about you.”
1 Peter 5:7

2. Cast your anxieties on God.

Followers of Jesus are set apart in that our peaceful non-anxious presence is found in the person of Jesus.

3. Slow down & pay attention.

4. Resist and stand firm by practicing faith.


“Resist him, firm in the faith”
1 Peter 5:9a.

In the practice of humbling myself instead of defending myself God meets me and he transforms me. He is my peace; he is my relief from anxiety.

“knowing that the same kind of sufferings are being experienced by your fellow believers throughout the world.”
1 Peter 5:9b.

Suffering is the way our bodies, hearts, minds, and souls remember pain.

5. Remember the Gospel in the midst of suffering.

“The God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, establish, strengthen, and support you after you have suffered a little while.  To him be dominion forever. Amen.”
1 Peter 5:10-11.

And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away.
1 Peter 5:4

The good news of the gospel is that Jesus is not just forgiving our sins, but freeing us from our sin and its effects.

“Through Silvanus, a faithful brother (as I consider him), I have written to you briefly in order to encourage you and to testify that this is the true grace of God. Stand firm in it! She who is in Babylon, chosen together with you, sends you greetings, as does Mark, my son. Greet one another with a kiss of love. Peace to all of you who are in Christ.”
1 Peter 5:12-14.

The peace of Christ is tethered to being in loving fellowship with other followers of Jesus.
__________________________________________________________________

Sermon Notes: Andrew Moroz
Text
: 1 Peter 5:6-14 (CSB)
Campus: College Hill

"Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, so that he may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your cares on him, because he cares about you. Be sober-minded, be alert. Your adversary the devil is prowling around like a roaring lion, looking for anyone he can devour. Resist him, firm in the faith, knowing that the same kind of sufferings are being experienced by your fellow believers throughout the world. The God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, establish, strengthen, and support you after you have suffered a little while.  To him be dominion forever.  Amen. Through Silvanus, a faithful brother (as I consider him), I have written to you briefly in order to encourage you and to testify that this is the true grace of God. Stand firm in it! She who is in Babylon, chosen together with you, sends you greetings, as does Mark, my son. Greet one another with a kiss of love. Peace to all of you who are in Christ."
1 Peter 5:6-14 (CSB)

Peter is giving Christian exiles tools to endure, and overcome, the various challenges to our faith.

1) Warning: recognize and resist the enemy (vv. 8-9a)
2) Encouragement: continually rest in the sufficiency of God’s grace (vv. 10-11)
3) Observation: in order to endure, we must press into, healthy, gospel-centered community with other imperfect Christians (vv. 9b, 12-14)

1) Warning: recognize and resist the enemy (vv. 8-9a)

“Be sober-minded, be alert. Your adversary the devil is prowling around like a roaring lion, looking for anyone he can devour. Resist him, firm in the faith,”
1 Peter 5:8-9a

How does the Bible describe the enemy?
He is a cunning deceiver (2 Cor. 11:3)
He is the “father of all lies” (John 8:44)
He is the slanderer (Rev. 13:6)
He is the tempter (Matt. 4:3)
He is the destroyer (Rev. 9:11)
He is a thief who comes to kill and destroy (John 10:10)
He is a murderer (John 8:44)
He is the “evil one” (Matt. 13:19)
He is the “accuser of the brothers” (Rev. 12:10)
He is the ruler of the darkness (Eph. 6:12)
He blinds the minds of unbelievers (2 Cor. 4:4);
He is the god of this world (2 Cor. 4:4)
He is lawless (2 Thess. 2:8-9)
He masquerades as an angel of light (2 Cor. 11:14)
He is clever (2 Cor. 2:11)
He is a roaring lion looking for anyone he can devour (1 Pet. 5:8).

When we humbly continue to trust God, believing that he truly cares for us, we silence the lies of the evil one.
When we faithfully practice the teachings of Jesus, and live out the way of Jesus, there’s no room for the enemy to sink his teeth into us.

2) Encouragement: continually rest in the sufficiency of God’s grace (vv. 10-11); grace which is evident in God’s calling, presence and promises.

“The God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, establish, strengthen, and support you after you have suffered a little while. To him be dominion forever. Amen.”
1 Peter 5:10-11

The one who called us by his grace will also enable us, by his grace, to persevere until the end.
We rest in the sufficiency of God’s grace because God is not absent from our trouble, he’s powerful over all of creation, and he will see us through.

3) Observation: in order to endure, we must press into, healthy, gospel-centered community with other imperfect Christians (vv. 9b, 12-14)

One of the ways that the true grace of God is manifest in our lives is through the imperfect Christians around us.

Consider:
-How might I need to expose, and call out, the work of the enemy?
-Where do I need to apply God’s grace to myself and others?
-Am I pressing into gospel-centered community?
__________________________________________________________________

November 15th Sermon Guides

Kid City Notes

View all Kid City lesson videos by clicking HERE.

Lesson Overview:
Bible Passage: 1 Peter 5:5-7
Story Point: 
We need to act with humility and obey those that are in positions of authority over us.
Key Passage: 
1 Peter 5:5b Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”

Younger Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills

Key Passage Activity
Supplies
: Paper and pencil
Practice saying the verse a few times to start. Then take turns writing the verse with each person only writing one word of the verse at a time. Move the paper in a circle to complete the verse as a family.
Say: We need to wrap ourselves in humility so that we can better follow Jesus’ example.

Bible Story Questions:
  1. What does being “humble” mean? (Mr. Brandon explains being humble as not seeing yourself as better.)
  2. How can we act humbly? (We can act humbly by obeying our parents, sharing with our brothers and sisters. When we put the needs of others above our own, we are acting humbly.)
  3. Our verse talks about clothing or wrapping ourselves with humility, how can we do that? (Wrapping ourselves in humility is making it a part of everything that we do. Thinking of others and their needs, and listening is a great way to be humble.)
  4. Who is the greatest example of humility? Why, what are some things He did? (Jesus. Remind the kids that He came to Earth, left the perfection of Heaven, to become a man, in order to glorify God by living a perfect life and then dying on the cross to save us.)
  5. Talk about some different ways you can show humility this week.

Activity: Simon Says
Supplies:
Space
Say: Listening is super important when it comes to playing Simon Says and when it comes to humility. If we are carefully listening we can obey better and can hear what others need. Listening carefully shows others that we care about them, and that is a humble thing to do.

Older Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills

Key Passage Activity

Supplies: Paper and pencil
Practice saying the verse a few times to start. Then take turns writing the verse with each person only writing one word of the verse at a time. Move the paper in a circle to complete the verse as a family.
Say: We had to work together to write this verse as a family. Our key verse tells us that everyone who is led by the Spirit of God becomes God’s children. God loves when his children work together to bring Him praise.

Bible Story Questions
  1. What does being “humble” mean? (Mr. Brandon explains being humble as not seeing yourself as better.)
  2. How can we act humbly? (We can act humbly by obeying our parents, sharing with our brothers and sisters. When we put the needs of others above our own, we are acting humbly.)
  3. Our verse talks about clothing or wrapping ourselves with humility, how can we do that? (Wrapping ourselves in humility is making it a part of everything that we do. Thinking of others and their needs, and listening is a great way to be humble.)
  4. Who is the greatest example of humility? Why, what are some things He did? (Jesus. Remind the kids that He came to Earth, left the perfection of Heaven, to become a man, in order to glorify God by living a perfect life and then dying on the cross to save us.)
  5. Talk about some different ways you can show humility this week.

Activity: Simon Says
Supplies:
Space
Say: Listening is super important when it comes to playing Simon Says and when it comes to humility. If we are carefully listening, we can obey better and can hear what others need. Listening carefully shows others that we care about them, and that is a humble thing to do
__________________________________________________________________

Gospel Student Ministry
Scripture: 
1 Peter 5:5-9
Christian, Clothe Yourself in Humility


Intro/Overview
Honestly, humility does not come easily. There is just something about human beings, something in our DNA that makes humbling ourselves incredibly difficult at times. It feels counterintuitive, it goes against our very nature, and quite frankly, we just don’t like it. But as the people of God, He clearly calls for humility to be one of our attributes; a prominent characteristic for followers of Christ. Here is 1 Peter 5, Peter reminds those believers in exile to live with great humility.

He begins by telling the younger men to subject themselves to the leadership of the elders within the church (verse 5). This is really a call to submit to authority. Again, this doesn’t come easily or naturally to us as sinful and rebellious human beings. But God has called and established the elders/leaders in the church for a reason. And just as we submit to God and His authority, as the body of Christ and His people we must subject ourselves to the appropriate authorities that are in place over us. This will not happen apart from the work of the Holy Spirit and an incredible amount of humility.

This is why Peter says, to “clothe yourselves with humility.” As Christians, humility should be central to who we are. If we look to Christ Jesus and the example He set for us, we can’t help but be moved by His incredible display of humility. Here, Peter says that we should clothe ourselves in humility. This means that all that we are and do should exemplify a humble disposition. Think about wrapping yourself in a robe, a gown, or towel. That garment covers you and really engulfs you. If we think of humility in this way, it really begins to infiltrate every area of our lives.

Peter also reminds believers why it is so important to consistently demonstrate humility. He says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” Here, he paraphrases part of Proverbs 3:34 by saying God gives grace to the humble. Let’s focus on the first half of that statement, “God opposes the proud.” This should really stop us in our tracks and make us stand up and pay attention. The reason humility is so important, is because God is in opposition to those that are proud; He is against those that lack humility. In our flesh, apart from Christ and His redeeming work, this is who we all are, opponents of God. If you ever wonder whether or not you are in fellowship with Creator God and whether or not you have been regenerated, truly consider your heart and the level of humility you do or do not consistently display. God may oppose the proud, but He gives grace to the humble. This is glorious news! God has shown His amazing grace in the most evident and powerful way, by sending Christ Jesus to pay for the sins of wicked and rebellious people. That should be enough to humble the proudest individual.

Peter ends this section by telling us that most importantly, we must humble ourselves under the mighty hand of God. As the great Creator, and our redeemer, we should be humble before Him. Apart from His saving grace and mercy, we are doomed, destined for death and destruction as objects of His wrath. But in His great love for us, He put forth Christ as a substitute for our sins to secure eternal life and forgiveness all for His glory and our good. Furthermore, Peter says that those that are humbled, God will exalt at the proper time. This a Kingdom principle, that Christ Himself taught His disciples (see Luke 14:7-11).

Discussion Questions
Read
1 Peter 5:5-9
Reflect on these verses

These questions are meant to generate conversations with your students.
  1. Peter says there must be submission. As members of the church we are to subject ourselves to the leadership and authority of elders. Why is submitting to authority so difficult? Do you have a hard time with authority? Maybe certain people?
  2. We are told to clothe ourselves in humility. How would you define the word humility and where have you seen it in action? What does it mean to clothe ourselves in humility and why is this so important for the life of the believer?
  3. Verse 5 says that God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. Why would God be in opposition to the proud? And does it mean for God to give/show us grace?
  4. For those that do humble themselves before God, He will exalt them at the appropriate time. Does the Bible tell us anything about God’s plan to exalt believers? If so, what do we know about this? How does He plan to exalt those who belong to Him?

End your time together by praying as a family. Pray specifically for the things that you’ve discussed (and confessed), pray for each other, and pray for our world as we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 crisis and the racial and political tensions currently facing our nation.

Parents:
  • Consider ways to leverage the time that you have with your students. How can you utilize this time to help them see Jesus/own the mission?
  • In what ways can you love/serve your neighbors? Think of some practical (and safe!) ways that you and your student(s) can be the hands and feet of Jesus at this time.
__________________________________________________________________

Sermon Notes: Preston Burling
Title: 
Faith in Exile
Text: 
1 Peter 5:5-7
Campus: 
Rivermont

Three Imperatives:
  1. Be subject to the elders
  2. Clothe yourselves in humility
  3. Humble yourselves

Humility is not thinking less of yourself. Rather, in light of God, thinking more significantly of those around you, in order that you are so captivated and motivated to love and care for those around you.

“In the same way, you who are younger; be subject to the elders. All of you clothe yourselves with humility toward one another.”
1 Peter 5:5a (CSB)

1. Humility is the clothing that identifies us.
Your attitude, your language, your demeanor, and the very presence that is carried with you are seasoned with that of an eager servanthood.
Humility is found in the shadow that follows God’s presence.

“God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble.”
1 Peter 5:5b (CSB)

  1. Humility is the clothing that identifies us.
  2. Humility is not something we do; it is an emptiness to be pursued in order to be full of grace.
  3. Humility is about being more, by emptying yourself—to become a fountain of God’s overflowing grace to the world around you.

“Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, so that he may exalt you at the proper time.”
1 Peter 5:6 (CSB)

  1. Humility is the clothing that identifies us.
  2. Humility is not something we do; it is an emptiness to be pursued in order to be full of grace.
  3. Humility trusts in God’s sovereign power over outcomes.

Humility doesn’t seek another’s affirmation, sacrificing exultation from Christ.
-Rather-
It willingly submits to one another—not considering their affirmation—while waiting upon God’s exultation.

“Casting all your cares on him, because he cares about you.”
1 Peter 5:7 (CSB)

  1. Humility is the clothing that identifies us.
  2. Humility is not something we do; it is an emptiness to be pursued in order to be full of grace.
  3. Humility trusts in God’s sovereign power over outcomes.
  4. Humility demonstrates trust by casting our anxieties on the Lord.

Identify the sources of pride that are keeping you from pressing into this glorious virtue of humility.
-Then-
Empty yourself and set up boundaries that will help you be firmly saturated in the fullness of God’s grace.
_______________________________________________________________

Sermon Notes: Andrew Moroz
Text:
1 Peter 5:5-7
Campus: 
College Hill

“I exhort the elders among you as a fellow elder and witness to the sufferings of Christ, as well as one who shares in the glory about to be revealed: Shepherd God’s flock among you, not overseeing out of compulsion but willingly, as God would have you; not out of greed for money but eagerly; not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory. In the same way, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. All of you clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because God resists the proud
but gives grace to the humble.
Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, so that he may exalt you at the proper time, 7 casting all your cares on him, because he cares about you.”
Read 1 Pet. 5:1-7 (CSB).

Godly Elders: shepherd God’s church willingly, serve eagerly, and are an example to the church.

Elders are to live in such a way that everyone around them knows the chief Shepherd (Jesus) and knows that He’s coming back (v. 4).

“I, _________, understand my role as a ___Lead/Local_____ Elder and the responsibilities that are assigned to me by Christ and my fellow elders. Without any hesitation, I commit to fulfilling my role to the best of my ability. I submit myself to Christ and to my fellow elders. I will cheerfully follow Christ, love my family, and serve my church. I will faithfully pursue humility and seek to lead in a way that glorifies Christ and benefits His church. I will not abuse my authority or neglect my responsibilities. If at any point – I am no longer capable, or my fellow elders feel that I am incapable of fulfilling my responsibilities – I will step down graciously, discreetly, and un-contentiously.”

Humility is a reflection of God’s presence in our lives; it helps us to rightly engage with each other and to deal with our burdens in a Christ-like manner.

Those who are in positions of spiritual authority are stewards of that authority and their authority is meant to magnify Christ.

Those who are in a position of submission shouldn’t resist godly spiritual authority.

“All you clothe yourselves with humility toward one another…”
1 Peter 5:5b

Humility is the clothing that helps to identify every Christian.

Humility prioritizes God, and the needs of others, above self.

“God resists…”
1 Peter 5:5c

Pride is putting self above God and others.
God lavishly bestows his favor on those who acknowledge their need for him.

“ Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, so that he may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your cares on him, because he cares about you.”
1 Peter 5:6-7

When our cares are many, and our burdens are heavy, our response should be one of humble trust.

Humble ourselves BY casting our cares on the Lord.

Incessant worry exposes where we’re failing to trust God.

Followers of Jesus humble themselves by casting their cares and anxieties on the Lord.

God invites us to fear him, but not as a way to manipulate us but to liberate us.

Three spiritual practices for anxious souls:
  1. Fasting (from news media/social media)
  2. Feasting (on the Lord)
  3. Serving (look for opportunities at home, church, community)
___________________________________________________________________

November 8th Sermon Guides

Kids City

Click here to watch our Kid City video that corresponds to this sermon guide. https://vimeo.com/showcase/7026436

Bible passage: 1 Peter 5:1-4
Story point: Prepare and have the right tool for the battle against sin
Key passage: 1 Peter 5:2 "Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them—not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve."

Younger Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills

Key Passage Activity
Supplies: Paper, pen/pencil
Write:  the key passage, 1 Peter 5:2, on a piece of paper to read with the kids. Then cut or rip the paper to separate the words. Have the kids put the passage in order and hold a thumbs up when they’re done. Time the kids and challenge them to beat their time.
Say: Think about the kind of the friends and leaders you want in your life. Think of people who are leading because they love God and want to serve Him. When we become leaders, we should do it to help others and bring God glory.

Bible Story Questions
  1. Can you think of two things that Mr. Trevor said to describe elders? (Mr. Trevor said elders are in positions of authority, they are leaders, and they are faithful.)
  2. What does Peter tell the elders of the church? (He tells them to be shepherds of the church because they want to serve.)
  3. Why are elders compared to shepherds? (A good shepherd is someone who looks after his sheep and serves his sheep well. Our elders should be seeking to serve God and others.)
  4. How should elders use their power? (They should guide us and protect us and help us obey God.)

Activity:
Supplies: Draw a picture of you being a good leader.
Say: What did you draw? What do you think are important things to do as leaders?

Older Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills

Key Passage Activity:
Supplies: Paper, pen/pencil
Write: the key passage, 1 Peter 5:2, on a piece of paper to read with the kids. Then cut or rip the paper to separate the words. Have the kids put the passage in order and hold a thumbs up when they’re done. Time the kids and challenge them to beat their time.
Say: Think about the kind of the friends and leaders you want in your life. Think of people who are leading because they love God and want to serve Him. When we become leaders, we should do it to help others and bring God glory.

Bible Story Questions
  1. Can you think of two things that Mr. Trevor said to describe elders? (Mr. Trevor said elders are in positions of authority, they are leaders, and they are faithful.)
  2. What does Peter tell the elders of the church? (He tells them to be shepherds of the church because they want to serve.)
  3. Why are elders compared to shepherds? (A good shepherd is someone who looks after his sheep and serves his sheep well. Our elders should be seeking to serve God and others.)
  4. How should elders use their power? (They should guide us and protect us and help us obey God.)
  5. How can you be a good leader in your friend group? (Open discussion. You should be pointing each other closer to God and to glorifying him through obedience.)

Activity:
Supplies: Draw a picture or list out some leadership qualities that you think are important.
Say: Why did you choose those qualities? What qualities do you see in yourself that would make you a good leader?
____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

GSM Notes
Scripture: 1 Peter 5:1-4
The Calling and Responsibility of an Elder

Intro/Overview
Leading a church is an incredible responsibility, one not to be taken lightly. God has established His church, the bride of Christ for His own glory and praise. And although Christ Jesus has ascended to the right hand of the Father, He has not left His people to fend for themselves. Instead, He has called, equipped, and entrusted certain individuals to lead His church, to care for His bride. Pastors and elders have this great responsibility of shepherding the people of God. This means they must lead, teach, and care for the church consistently. Again, keeping watch over the souls of human beings is a great calling, so it must be done with great care and integrity.

In 1 Peter chapter 5, the apostle Peter encourages those that are called to care for the flock, specifically elders within the church. But Peter begins by establishing his own authority as an elder among the people of God. As one who actually walked with Jesus, sat under His teaching, and was given the mission to teach and proclaim the Gospel, Peter was established as an apostle and leader within the body of believers. He first challenges elders not to lead from a place of compulsion but instead to lead “willingly as God would have you (verse 2).” This means there is indeed a right and a wrong way to lead the people of God.

Peter says not to serve the body because we feel forced, but rather serve and care for God’s people willingly. In other words, elders should serve because they want to, not because they have to. That makes all the difference in the world, the heart and motivation behind our serving of others. Peter expands on this a little bit more and says that elders/shepherds shouldn’t lead when they are motivated by greed or money. Unfortunately, this is a reality that Peter encountered in his day, and it is reality in 2020 as well. There are many individuals who get involved in the ministry only for financial reasons. But the word of God is clear, we should not lead and care for the people of God because we received some sort of financial gain. Greed can not be the motivation for our serving.

After challenging the motivation of elders, Peter says in verse 3 that elders are not to lord it over those under their care, but instead to “be examples to the flock.” This means the way that elders (and pastors, church leaders) lead those within the church must be appropriate. They must not abuse their authority or be domineering as those leading and caring for the people of God. Godly leaders show genuine care, compassion, and tenderness for their flock. Elders and pastors must be a Christ-like example to those that they lead.

Finally, Peter reminds those that lead within the body of Christ of the most glorious reality. He says those who are faithful to God will receive an unfading crown of Glory, when the chief Shepherd returns. This chief Shepherd is Christ Jesus. For those that have been called and purposed to lead His bride, that is a great calling and responsibility. And if you remain faithful in that calling, on the day that Christ’s glory is revealed to the world, you too will receive and share in that glory as well.

Discussion Questions
Read
1 Peter 5:1-4
Reflect on these verses

These questions are meant to generate conversations with your students.
  1. In this section of chapter 5 Peter is addressing elders within the church. What are the qualifications of an elder (see 1 Timothy 3)? Why are these particular qualifications/attributes so important?
  2. What is the job of an elder/pastor? What makes their duty or task different from the rest of the congregation?
  3. What does it mean to lead out of compulsion? What does it mean to lead willingly? Are there moments in your life where you lead and serve with the wrong motivations?
  4. In chapter 4, Peter reminds those elders/leaders of the crown of glory that awaits them. This is our motivation to serve faithfully. What motivates you most? Is it the glory of God? Is the sacrificial love of Jesus? (this is a great place to really examine your heart and your motivations)

End your time together by praying as a family. Pray specifically for the things that you’ve discussed (and confessed), pray for each other, and pray for our world as we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 crisis and the racial and political tensions currently facing our nation.

Parents:
  • Consider ways to leverage the time that you have with your students. How can you utilize this time to help them see Jesus/own the mission?
  • In what ways can you love/serve your neighbors? Think of some practical (and safe!) ways that you and your student(s) can be the hands and feet of Jesus at this time.
_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Sermon Notes: Brenton Lehman
Title: Exilic Eldership
Text: 1 Peter 5:1-4 (My own translation)
Campus: Rivermont

“Absolutely nothing is more important in a church family than the DNA of the leadership culture. The healthiest churches I know are those that are led by pastors and elders who are captured by the gospel, smitten with Jesus, and transformed by God's grace.”

~Scotty Smith

The character and culture of a local church is not likely to exceed that of its leaders.

  • What an Elder is
  • Who Elders lead
  • How Elders lead
  • What Elders do
  • And why that matters

“Therefore, I strongly urge the elders among you [pastors, spiritual leaders of the church], as a fellow elder and as an eyewitness [called to testify] of the sufferings of Christ, as well as one who shares in the glory that is to be revealed...”
1 Peter 5:1

“Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care”
1 Peter 5:2

“Leadership is stewardship. It is temporary, and you’re accountable.”

Character matters more than gifting.


“You can learn from another person’s knowledge but you can lead from someone else’s wisdom.”
~David Brooks

“serving as overseers”
1 Peter 5:2

I can’t love you and use you at the same time.

In the Kingdom of God, you’ve got to die in order to lead.


“not because you have to but because you want to.”
1 Peter 5:2

“not greedy for money, but wholeheartedly.”
1 Peter 5:2

“Not lording it over those entrusted to you but being examples to the flock”
1 Peter 5:3

IMAGE: CLICK HERE

“And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away.”
1 Peter 5:4

Glory for spiritual leaders comes not by success, numbers, growth, or fame, but by humble service and sacrificial love.

“Remember your leaders who have spoken God’s word to you. As you carefully observe the outcome of their lives, imitate their faith.”
Hebrews 13:7

“Listen to your spiritual leaders and submit to them, since they keep watch over your souls as those who will give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with grief and groans, for this would be of no benefit to you.”
Hebrews 13:17
____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

November 1st Sermon Guides

Kids City

Click here to watch our Kid City video that corresponds to this sermon guide. https://vimeo.com/showcase/7026436

Bible passage: 1 Peter 4:12-19
Story point: We can expect to suffer as Christians, however, suffering for Jesus is a good thing.
Key passage: 1 Peter 4: 12-13 “Dear friends, don’t be surprised when the fiery ordeal comes among you to test you as if something unusual were happening to you. Instead, rejoice as you share in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may also rejoice with great joy when his glory is revealed.”

Younger Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills
Key Passage Activity
Supplies:
Paper, pen/pencil
Write: the key passage, 1 Peter 4:12-13, on a piece of paper to read with the kids. Have the kids try to memorize these 2 verses. Help and encourage them by offering some sort of treat or incentive for memorizing this verse.
Say: Jesus promised His disciples that they would face hard times (see John 16:33), and that is true for every person that wants to follow Him. But if we suffer well and continue to honor Jesus, we will be glorified with Him whenever He returns.

Bible Story Questions
  1. Verse 12 says we shouldn’t be surprised when trials and hard times come our way. Why should we expect this as followers of Jesus? (Because the world is opposed to God (see Romans 1) and the things of God. As God’s people, those who represent Him, we will face opposition from the world as well. When we read through the Bible, we see how the disciples faced great persecution because of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.)
  2. Suffering for Jesus is actually a good thing. Now, this may seem really odd, so how is this possible? (When we continue to follow Jesus, even when it is hard, this brings God great glory. All of the disciples and followers that were killed because of Jesus have now entered heaven and the presence of God with great honor (if you have time, read the story of Stephen from Acts 7).
  3. Here in verse 15 Peter says not to suffer as one that does evil (like a thief or murderer, etc.). How is suffering as Christian different than suffering as an evildoer? (Suffering for doing evil is deserved. The punishment and persecution you face is a result of doing evil. However, as believers in Jesus Christ, our suffering leads to a great reward and brings honor rather than shame.)
  4. Peter ends this section of chapter 4 by telling us to entrust ourselves to God while we suffer, because this is part of His will. How can we trust God even in the middle of our difficult times? (By remembering that God is a loving Father that cares for all His children. God uses all things, even our hard times, for His glory and for our good. (See Romans 8:28).

Activity:
Supplies: Paper, pencil, drawing utensils - Have your children write or draw some ways in which they can suffer well for the glory of God. Talk through some scenarios that allow for Christian suffering.
Say: Jesus is the ultimate example of suffering for the glory of God. Although He was perfect and sinless, He was nailed to the cross and killed for our forgiveness. When we are facing hard times, let Jesus be the example that we follow.

Older Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills
Key Passage Activity:
Supplies: 
Paper, pen/pencil
Write: the key passage, 1 Peter 4:12-19, on a piece of paper to read with the kids. Have the kids try to memorize these 2 verses. Help and encourage them by offering some sort of treat or incentive for memorizing this verse.
Say: Jesus promised His disciples that they would face hard times (see John 16:33), and that is true for every person that wants to follow Him. But if we suffer well and continue to honor Jesus, we will be glorified with Him whenever He returns.

Bible Story Questions
  1. Verse 12 says we shouldn’t be surprised when trials and hard times come our way. Why should we expect this as followers of Jesus? (Because the world is opposed to God (see Romans 1) and the things of God. As God’s people, those who represent Him, we will face opposition from the world as well. When we read through the Bible, we see how the disciples faced great persecution because of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.)
  2. Suffering for Jesus is actually a good thing. Now, this may seem really odd, so how is this possible? (When we continue to follow Jesus, even when it is hard, this brings God great glory. All of the disciples and followers that were killed because of Jesus have now entered heaven and the presence of God with great honor (if you have time, read the story of Stephen from Acts 7).
  3. Here in verse 15 Peter says not to suffer as one that does evil (like a thief or murderer, etc.). How is suffering as Christian different than suffering as an evildoer? (Suffering for doing evil is deserved. The punishment and persecution you face is a result of doing evil. However, as believers in Jesus Christ, our suffering leads to a great reward and brings honor rather than shame.)
  4. Peter ends this section of chapter 4 by telling us to entrust ourselves to God while we suffer, because this is part of His will. How can we trust God even in the middle of our difficult times? (By remembering that God is a loving Father that cares for all His children. God uses all things, even our hard times, for His glory and for our good. (See Romans 8:28)

Activity:
Supplies: Pencils/paper - Write out some ways that we suffer here in this life (for example, if we steal we go to jail, if we fall, we get hurt, we can get sick, etc.). Now, write/discuss some ways in which we can use suffering for the glory of God and to point people to Jesus.
Say: Jesus is the suffering servant. He suffered death on the cross, satisfying the will of God for His glory and our good. If we suffer well for the name of Jesus, we are simply following the example that Jesus has set for us.
__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

GSM Notes
Scripture
: 1 Peter 4:12-19
Expect Suffering, for the Glory of God

Intro/Overview
As believers in Jesus Christ, we can expect to face difficult times. In fact, hard times are expected as a result of living in a fallen and broken world. However, the Bible tells us that we should not be surprised when difficulty comes our way, especially as a result of our allegiance to Christ. In 1 Peter chapter 4, the apostle Peter reminds his readers of this reality. He tells this group of exiles that suffering, and persecution are not unusual, quite the contrary, they are to be expected.

Instead of facing these difficult times with bitterness and grumbling, we are told to rejoice. Now this certainly seems like an incredible contradiction. How in the world are we going to rejoice in our sufferings? Peter says to rejoice because we are sharing in the suffering of Christ Jesus, our Savior. This is a radically different concept than anything that the world will teach you. When we suffer for doing well, we are actually blessed; this is a good thing. This is a good and glorious thing because we are sharing in the sufferings of Jesus. The reality is this: we are never more like Christ than when we are suffering for the sake of righteousness.

Peter reminds his readers again here of an important distinction between righteous suffering and suffering for wrongdoing. In verse 15 he says, “Let none of you suffer as a murderer, a thief, an evildoer, or a meddler.” So, we know that suffering comes when we do evil, there are consequences and punishment associated with our wrongdoings. But Peter says to the people of God, don’t suffer for that. Instead he says to suffer as Christians, for the sake and name of Christ Jesus. Again, this is a truly blessed thing (for more on that, read Matthew 5:10-12).

Finally, Peter ends chapter 4 by reminding us that we can trust God even in our suffering, for this too is His will. This is often overlooked by many Christians; we forget that God is sovereign and totally in control of all things. So, because of this reality, and because He is a loving heavenly Father, we can entrust ourselves to Him, continue to pursue His will and do good even in the face of suffering and adversity. Romans 8:28 tells us that God works all things together for the good of those who love Him. That means even our suffering, trials, and persecution are part of His good plan.

Discussion Questions
Read:
1 Peter 4:12-19
Reflect on these verses

These questions are meant to generate conversations with your students.
  1. Verse 12 tells us that we can expect fiery ordeals, so we should not be surprised by difficult times. Why would we as followers of Christ be expected to face so much tribulation? What is it about following Jesus that leads us to difficulty?
  2. Peter tells this group of exiles that suffering for doing well is actually a good thing. This is so counter-cultural, and really counter-intuitive. In what ways (specifically) can we suffer for the glory of God? (discuss some examples or scenarios)
  3. Here in verse 15, Peter warns this group of believers not to suffer for doing evil, like a thief, or murderer, or meddler, etc. We know that there are natural consequences for sin/evil deeds. How is suffering in this way different than suffering for Jesus?
  4. When we suffer for doing good, this is all part of the will of God (verse 19). It is even in these moments of difficulty that we can entrust ourselves to God. How can we trust Him in these dark and difficult times? What motivates us to do this?

End your time together by praying as a family. Pray specifically for the things that you’ve discussed (and confessed), pray for each other, and pray for our world as we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 crisis and the racial and political tensions currently facing our nation.

Parents:
  • Consider ways to leverage the time that you have with your students. How can you utilize this time to help them see Jesus/own the mission?
  • In what ways can you love/serve your neighbors? Think of some practical (and safe!) ways that you and your student(s) can be the hands and feet of Jesus at this time.
___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Sermon Notes: Brenton Lehman
Title:
1 Peter 4:12-19 (Guided Prayer & Worship)
Text: 1 Peter 4:12-19
Congregation: Rivermont

“Dear friends, don’t be surprised when the fiery ordeal comes among you to test you, as if something unusual were happening to you.”
1 Peter 4:12

“Instead, rejoice as you share in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may also rejoice with great joy when his glory is revealed. “
1 Peter 4:13

“So then, let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust themselves to a faithful Creator while doing what is good.”
1 Peter 4:19

“For the time has come for judgment to begin with God’s household, and if it begins with us, what will the outcome be for those who disobey the gospel of God?”
1 Peter 4:17

Prayers for Commitment and Surrender
  • Repentance: Expose our idols
  • Surrender: Jesus, help us to follow you wherever you lead, no matter the cost.

“If you are ridiculed for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you. Let none of you suffer as a murderer, a thief, an evildoer, or a meddler. But if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed but let him glorify God in having that name.”
1 Peter 4:14-16.

There is a joy that will always remain just out of reach if we are unwilling to name and carry that pain to Jesus.

Prayer Prompts
  • Name the pain: In what ways have you suffered? In what ways are you suffering?
  • Pray for those who are suffering physically, spiritually, or emotionally in our church family.

Open Doors USA—in just the last year:
  • Over 260 million Christians living in places where they experience high levels of persecution
  • 2,983 Christians killed for their faith
  • 9,488 churches and other Christian buildings attacked
  • 3,711 believers detained without trial, arrested, sentenced, or imprisoned

“Remember those in prison, as though you were in prison with them, and the mistreated, as though you yourselves were suffering bodily.”
Hebrews 13:3

Corporate Prayer
  • Pray for protection, encouragement, and healing
  • Pray for justice and peace
  • Pray for freedom from oppression and freedom to follow Jesus
  • Pray for revival and awakening
_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Sermon Notes: Andrew Moroz
Title:
1 Peter 4:12-19 (Guided Prayer & Worship)
Text: 1 Peter 4:12-19
Congregation: College Hill

We all suffer in different ways, and some of us suffer for our faith.
“Dear friends, don’t be surprised when the fiery ordeal comes among you to test you, as if something unusual were happening to you.”
Read 1 Pet. 4:12 (CSB)

Christians rejoice in the midst of suffering because:
  • We don’t suffer in vain.
  • Our suffering is not indefinite (v. 13).
  • There’s a unique blessing that is extended toward those who suffer for Christ, and God is uniquely present with those who suffer for their faith (v. 14).

“Let none of you suffer as a murderer, a thief, an evildoer, or a meddler. But if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed but let him glorify God in having that name.””
Read 1 Pet. 12:15-16

“So then, let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust themselves to a faithful Creator while doing what is good.”
Read 1 Pet. 12:19

Christians can suffer well, and bear fruit, by fully entrusting ourselves to God.

Prayers of commitment and surrender.

When we follow Jesus in our context, we do put ourselves in positions where we might be misunderstood.

Not all of our suffering is the result of obeying the Lord, but we all suffer while being obedient.

In what ways have you suffered? In what ways are you suffering?

Prayer prompts:
-Jesus, help us to count the cost of following you.
-Help us to be faithful and obedient, even when it’s hard.
-Pray for the challenges that are named, and that are represented in our church and community.
-Pray for those who are suffering physically, spiritually, or emotionally in our church family.

“Remember those in prison, as though you were in prison with them, and the mistreated, as though you yourselves were suffering bodily.” - Heb. 13:3

Corporate prayer
Prayer prompts:
-Pray for protection, encouragement, and healing.
-Pray for justice and peace.
-Pray for freedom from oppression and freedom to follow Jesus.

1 Peter 4:12-19, The Message
“Friends, when life gets really difficult, don’t jump to the conclusion that God isn’t on the job. Instead, be glad that you are in the very thick of what Christ experienced. This is a spiritual refining process, with glory just around the corner.
 If you’re abused because of Christ, count yourself fortunate. It’s the Spirit of God and his glory in you that brought you to the notice of others. If they’re on you because you broke the law or disturbed the peace, that’s a different matter. But if it’s because you’re a Christian, don’t give it a second thought. Be proud of the distinguished status reflected in that name!
It’s judgment time for God’s own family. We’re first in line. If it starts with us, think what it’s going to be like for those who refuse God’s Message!
If good people barely make it, What’s in store for the bad?
So, if you find life difficult because you’re doing what God said, take it in stride. Trust him. He knows what he’s doing, and he’ll keep on doing it.”
____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

October 25th Sermon Guides

Kid City Notes

View all Kid City lesson videos by clicking HERE.

Lesson Overview
Bible Passage: 1 Peter 4:7-11
Story Point: Be prepared for Christ’s return and love one another constantly.
Key Passage: 1 Peter 4:7-8. “The end of all things is near; therefore, be alert and sober-minded for prayer. Above all, maintain constant love for one another, since love covers a multitude of sins.”

Younger Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills
Key Passage Activity
Supplies
: Paper, pen/pencil
Write the verse:  1 Peter 4:7-8, on a piece of paper to read with the kids. Have the kids try to memorize these 2 verses. Help and encourage them by offering some sort of treat or incentive for memorizing this verse.
Say: Jesus has promised us that He will return one day, so we must be prepared and constantly watching/waiting for Him. He commands us, during that time, to love each other, that is how we show the world that we belong to Him.

Bible Story Questions: Read 1 Peter 4:7-11
  1. Verse 7 says to “be alert and sober-minded.” What do you think this means? (This means that we must be focused on God and honoring Jesus, not distracted, or pulled away by the things of this world. Also, talk about what it means to wait and watch for Jesus’ return patiently and joyfully.)
  2. Love covers a multitude of sins. How has love covered our sins? (God, in His great love for us, sent His only Son Jesus to die so that our sins would be covered and forgiven.)
  3. What does it mean to be hospitable? And what are some ways we can be hospitable to our family/siblings/friends/neighbors? (Being hospitable simply means to welcome people and care for their needs. When we open our home and provide for people, even those that are different from us, we are being hospitable.)
  4. We want to glorify God in everything that we do. How can we do this? (Verse 11 says that it is through Christ Jesus that God is glorified. So, if we show honor and praise to Jesus, God is glorified in that.)

Activity
Supplies:  Paper, pencil, drawing utensils - Have your children write the names of some people in their lives that they can show hospitality towards (siblings, friends, neighbors, etc.). Next, have them write or draw some things they can do to show hospitality.
Say: God has welcomed us (hospitality) by allowing us as sinful people to be His children, part of His family, and members of His eternal Kingdom.

Older Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills
Key Passage Activity
Supplies
: Paper, pen/pencil
Write the verse: 1 Peter 4:7-8, on a piece of paper to read with the kids. Have the kids try to memorize these two verses. Help and encourage them by offering some sort of treat or incentive for memorizing this verse.
Say: Jesus has promised us that He will return one day, so we must be prepared and constantly watching/waiting for Him. He commands us, during that time, to love each other, that is how we show the world that we belong to Him.
Bible Story Questions: Read 1 Peter 4:7-11
  1. Verse 7 says to “be alert and sober-minded.” What do you think this means? (This means that we must be focused on God and honoring Jesus, not distracted, or pulled away by the things of this world. Also, discuss what it means to be prepared for Jesus’ return.)
  2. Love covers a multitude of sins. How has love covered our sins? (God, in His great love for us, sent His only Son Jesus to die so that our sins would be covered and forgiven.)
  3. What does it mean to be hospitable? And what are some ways we can be hospitable to our family/siblings/friends/neighbors? (Being hospitable simply means to welcome people and care for their needs. When we open our home and provide for people, even those that are different from us, we are being hospitable.)
  4. We want to glorify God in everything that we do. How can we do this? (Verse 11 says that it is through Christ Jesus that God is glorified. So, if we show honor and praise to Jesus, God is glorified in that.)

Activity
Supplies
: Pencils/paper - Have them write down the names of certain people in their lives that they can show hospitality and love towards. (Also, have them share some ways that they haven’t always succeeded at this. Are there times where you could’ve been more loving?). Write and/or draw some ways you can be hospitable towards people.
Say: God is the most gracious and loving Host. He has welcomed us as sinful and rebellious people into His family (read John 1:12), that is an incredible demonstration of his hospitality.
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Gospel Student Ministry Notes
Scripture: 
1 Peter 4:7-11
Loving and Radical Hospitality


Intro/Overview

As the people of God, we have an assured inheritance and an eternal glory that awaits us. While our destiny is certain, we can also be certain that Christ will return for His bride one day (see Matt. 24:44, Heb. 9:28, Rev. 1:7, 22:12). Until then, as His people, we are to consistently watch and wait for His return. Peter writes to a group of exiles to remind them of this reality. In 1 Peter 4:7, he tells them the end of time is near (really, no man knows when Jesus will return, for He will come as a thief in the night). And because of this, Peter says that this group of believers should be “alert and sober-minded.” As God’s people we should be joyfully and eagerly awaiting Christ’s return.

After reminding us to be alert and sober-minded, Peter says that above all things, we are to love one another. This is not a new teaching or something that followers of Christ are unfamiliar with. Jesus taught His disciples to love one another, in fact, He says that people will know that you are disciples of Christ by the way that you love each other (see John 13). Here Peter says in verse 8 that “love covers a multitude of sins.” What an incredible reminder for the people of God. God the Father, in His great love for us, sent Jesus Christ to die so that our sins would be forgiven and covered by His blood.

Peter then begins to tell us how we can show our love for each other. In verse 9 he writes “be hospitable to one another.” The way that we welcome and care for each other says a lot about Christ and our relationship with Him. Hospitality was a big part of the Jewish culture, and people took a lot of pride in being known as a good host. God Himself is the most gracious and loving host. He demonstrates unmatched hospitality by allowing sinful, rebellious people to have a seat at His table and place among His kingdom. This reality is what compels us to be hospitable to one another. And it is in this, that God is glorified.

Peter ends this section by pointing his readers to Christ Jesus. In verse 11 he says that “God is glorified through Christ Jesus in everything.” That is our goal and our purpose as Christians. We worship, exalt, and magnify the name of Jesus Christ, the perfect Son of God. And it is through our devotion and praise of Him, that we ultimately glorify Creator God.

Discussion Questions
Read: 
1 Peter 4:7-11
Reflect on these verses


These questions are meant to generate conversations with your students.
  1. In verse 7, Peter says that the end of all things is near, and because of this, we must “be alert and sober-minded.” What does it mean to be alert and sober-minded?
  2. We are told that love covers a multitude of sins. In what way has God’s love covered our sins? And how can we consistently demonstrate this for one another?
  3. Hospitality should be common amongst the people of God. However, we don’t always succeed in this area. How has God been hospitable towards us? Name some people in your life that you can be hospitable towards (siblings, friends, neighbors, etc.). Also, discuss some tangible ways of showing hospitality.
  4. Finally, verse 11 says that God is glorified in/through Christ Jesus. How can we bring glory to God through Jesus?

End your time together by praying as a family. Pray specifically for the things that you’ve discussed (and confessed), pray for each other, and pray for our world as we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 crisis and the racial and political tensions currently facing our nation.

Parents:
  • Consider ways to leverage the time that you have with your students. How can you utilize this time to help them see Jesus/own the mission?
  • In what ways can you love/serve your neighbors? Think of some practical (and safe!) ways that you and your student(s) can be the hands and feet of Jesus at this time.
___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Sermon Notes: Andrew Moroz
Text: 
I Peter 4:7-11
Campus: 
Rivermont

Jesus consistently leads us toward unrestrained surrender while the culture encourages unrestrained behavior.

To be a Christian means that we live and love in such a way that Christ is made known, and God is glorified in everything we do.


“The end of all things is near; therefore, be alert and sober-minded for prayer. Above all, maintain constant love for one another, since love covers a multitude of sins.  Be hospitable to one another without complaining. Just as each one has received a gift, use it to serve others, as good stewards of the varied grace of God.  If anyone speaks, let it be as one who speaks God’s words; if anyone serves, let it be from the strength God provides, so that God may be glorified through Jesus Christ in everything. To him be the glory and the power forever and ever. Amen.”
1 Peter 4:7-11 (CSB)

The primary purpose of our lives and our Christianity is to love God, love people, and to glorify God in everything.

“The end of all things is near; therefore, be alert and sober-minded for prayer.”
1 Peter 4:7

Any pain, discomfort, or discouragement we currently experience is not going to last forever.

Prayer shows our utter dependence on God and gives him an opportunity to glorify himself.

God doesn’t always give us what we want, or what we ask for, but he always uses prayer to help us discern, and align ourselves with, his will.


“Above all, maintain constant love for one another, since love covers a multitude of sins.”
1 Peter 4:8

One of the ways that we glorify God, and make him known, is seen in our commitment to sacrificial love.

The gospel calls us to love beyond politeness, pretense, and political correctness.

What are we really telling the world about Jesus?


“Just as each one has received a gift, use it to serve others, as good stewards of the varied grace of God.”
1 Peter 4:10

Hospitality is one of the ways we make Christ known in our world.

“Just as each one has received a gift, use it to serve others, as good stewards of the varied grace of God.  If anyone speaks, let it be as one who speaks God’s words;"
1 Peter 4:10-11a

By serving others, we help them to experience the tangible presence and grace of God.

“…if anyone serves, let it be from the strength God provides, so that God may be glorified through Jesus Christ in everything. To him be the glory and the power forever and ever. Amen.”
1 Peter 4:11b

Christian’s live and love in such a way that Christ is made known, and God is glorified in everything we do.

A hunger for God’s presence and glory leads us to cultivate a life of prayer which overflows into a life of love.

God’s love →  Primary motivator of our hospitality and generous stewardship

The Spirit of God is prompting us to go deeper.

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Sermon Notes: Brenton Lehman
The New Family Of Jesus
Text: 
1 Peter 4:7-11
Campus: 
College Hill

“Home is the place that when you have have to go there, they have to take you in.” ~Robert Frost

God designed the new family of Jesus to be one of the most compelling demonstrations of the power of the gospel and the glory of God that the world around can see.

“The end of all things is near,”
1 Peter 4:7a

“Jesus began to preach, saying, The Kingdom of God has come near! Repent and believe in this gospel!”
Mark 1:15

“so that God may be glorified through Jesus Christ in everything. To Him be the glory and the power forever and ever! Amen.”
1 Peter 4:11c

The glory of God = the weight of the fullness of who God is on display.

“Now if I have indeed found favor with you, please teach me your ways, and I will know you, so that I may find favor with you. Now consider that this nation is your people.”
14 And he replied, “My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”
15 “If your presence does not go,” Moses responded to him, “don’t make us go up from here.
16 How will it be known that I and your people have found favor with you unless you go with us? I and your people will be distinguished by this from all the other people on the face of the earth.”
17 The Lord answered Moses, “I will do this very thing you have asked, for you have found favor with me, and I know you by name.”
18 Then Moses said, “Please, let me see your glory.”
19 He said, “I will cause all my goodness to pass in front of you, and I will proclaim the name ‘the Lord’ before you. I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.”
20 But he added, “You cannot see my face, for humans cannot see me and live.”
21 The Lord said, “Here is a place near me. You are to stand on the rock,
22 and when my glory passes by, I will put you in the crevice of the rock and cover you with my hand until I have passed by.
23 Then I will take my hand away, and you will see my back, but my face will not be seen.”
Exodus 33:13-23.

“ The end of all things is near; therefore, be alert and sober-minded for prayer. “
1 Peter 4:7

A hunger for the glory and presence of God, leads to a praying life.

A hunger for the presence and glory of God, for the weight of who he is on display in us and through to the world, makes us a praying people.

And this kind of awake, alert, passionate, glory-soaked prayer overflows in a life of love.


“Above all, maintain constant love for one another, since love covers a multitude of sins.”
1 Peter 4:8

God’s glorious love shows up in how we Welcome on another, speak to one another, and serve one another.

“Be hospitable to one another without complaining.”
1 Peter 4:9

“Just as each one has received a gift, use it to serve others, as good stewards of the varied grace of God.”
1 Peter 4:10

“If anyone speaks, let it be as one who speaks God’s words;”
1 Peter 4:11a

“If anyone serves, let it be from the strength that God provides.”
1 Peter 4:11b

God designed the new family of Jesus to be one of the most compelling demonstrations of the power of the gospel and the glory of God that the world around can see.
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October 18th Sermon Guides

KID CITY NOTES

View all Kid City lesson videos by clicking HERE.

Lesson Overview:
Bible Passage: 1 Peter 4:1-6
Story Point: Prepare and have the right tool for the battle against sin
Key Passage: 1 Peter 4:1 Since therefore Christ suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same way of thinking, for whoever has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin

Younger Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills
Key Passage Activity
Supplies: paper; pen/pencil
Write the key passage: 1 Peter 4:1, on a piece of paper to read with the kids. Then cut or rip the paper to separate the words. Have the kids put the passage in order and hold a thumbs up when they’re done. Time the kids and challenge them to beat their time.
Say: Christ died on the cross for us, that we might live and not sin. We need to arm ourselves for the glory of God.

Bible Story Questions: Read 1 Peter 4:1-6
1. What did Mr. Brandon say it means to “arm ourselves”? (To be ready or prepared with the right weapons for battle or the right tools. In reading this passage we need to arm ourselves with the Word of God. )
2. What did Mr. Brandon say our greatest weapon is? (Mr. Brandon says it is our mind. But first, we need to have our mentality in a place that is ready to do what is right and to go through hard times for the glory of God.)
3. If you are living for Jesus what can you expect? (You can expect others to be surprised and ask questions and sometimes they might even be rude to you because you are choosing to do what is right and honor God.)
4. What does Ephesians say we should arm ourselves with? (With the Bible which is our sword.)

Activity:
Supplies: Paper and drawing utensils - Read over Ephesians 6:10-18 draw a picture of yourself in the full armor of God.
Say: Talk about what they chose to arm themselves with and why.

Older Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills
Key Passage Activity

Supplies: Paper, pen/pencil
Write the verse: 1 Peter 4:1, on a piece of paper to read with the kids. Then cut or rip the paper to separate the words. Have the kids put the passage in order and hold a thumbs up when they’re done. Time the kids and challenge them to beat their time.
Say: Christ died on the cross for us, that we might live and not sin. We need to arm ourselves for the glory of God.

Bible Story Questions: Read 1 Peter 4:1-6
1. What did Mr. Brandon say it means to “arm ourselves”? (To be ready or prepared with the right weapons for battle or the right tools. In reading this passage we need to arm ourselves with the Word of God. )
2. What did Mr. Brandon say our greatest weapon is? (Mr. Brandon says it is our mind. But first, we need to have our mentality in a place that is ready to do what is right and to go through hard times for the glory of God.)
3. If you are living for Jesus what can you expect? (You can expect others to be surprised and ask questions and sometimes they might even be rude to you because you are choosing to do what is right and honor God.)
4. What does Ephesians say we should arm ourselves with? (With the Bible which is our sword.)

Activity:
Supplies
: Paper and drawing utensils - Read over Ephesians 6:10-18 draw a picture of yourself in the full armor of God.
Say: Talk about what they chose to arm themselves with and why.
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GOSPEL STUDENT MINISTRY NOTES
Scripture: 1 Peter 4:1-6
Obediently Following Christ: Suffering in the Flesh

Intro/Overview
There are so many things fighting for our attention these days. Whether it be social media, entertainment, politics, people, etc., we are constantly bombarded and having to battle all the things that are attempting to pull us in different directions. As Christians, as the people of God, Christ has given us a particular mission. We are to be devoted to His divine purpose, and that is glorifying Him and making Him known throughout all of creation. God has made His plan evident and given us an example to follow through His perfect Son, Christ Jesus.

As Peter is writing to those believers in exile, he reminds them of Christ Jesus, the suffering servant, and he challenges this group to have the same mindset as Christ. This means that we must be committed to the mission of glorifying God and making disciples. And this mission is going to require us to live differently, to be holy and set apart. Rather than being overcome by our flesh and our earthly desires, we must be committed to live for God rather than simply seeking to please and satisfy ourselves. Our motivation to live for God rather than man is Christ Jesus Himself. He suffered in the flesh (v.1), for each of us, setting us free and reconciling us to God, leaving an example for us to follow.

This kind of devotion will require us to have the right mindset. If we look at the current culture, it is one that is self-centered, self-seeking, the dominant message is to do whatever pleases you. We are constantly encouraged to give in to every temptation. But as Christians, we are called to something greater; we are called to sacrifice and die to self for the glory of God. Again, this is going to take a massive shift in our thinking/mindset. Not only that, but this kind of radical living will inevitably lead to suffering and ridicule. If you suffer for doing right (which Peter has talked about a lot), and still move forward in obedience despite that suffering, you have made clear your break from sin. Obviously, this doesn’t mean you won’t ever sin, but sin isn’t dominating you, the old has gone and you are a new creation in Christ.

Peter continues his letter by reminding his readers of the importance of time, particularly how they used to spend it, and how they should spend their time now that they have been purchased by the blood of Christ. In verse 3, he essentially says that we have already spent enough time living in the flesh and giving in to our sin. Prior to knowing Jesus, we all lived in sin, we were dead in our trespasses and cut off from God. Peter tells this group of believers that they have lived like the world long enough. As the people of God, we have put off the old and put on the new, and this evidenced by how we make use of our time.

Again, you will be slandered for this change of behavior (v.4). This commitment to Christ will lead to persecution/suffering. However, those that persecute you for obedience to God will ultimately face judgment. In fact, we will all stand before God and be judged accordingly. Peter says that is why the Gospel was preached to those who are now dead (v.6). We are all dead spiritually apart from the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit. Unless God Himself intervenes for us, we have no hope on the day of judgment. We are desperately in need, which is why we are devoted to living in holiness and proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ to ALL people.

Discussion Questions
Read: 1 Peter 4:1-6
Reflect on these verses

These questions are meant to generate conversations with your students.
  1. This text tells us that Christ suffered in the flesh. We know that this is referring to His physical death by crucifixion. How can we follow Jesus’ example here? What are some ways that we too can suffer for the glory of God?
  2. Peter tells the exiles to have “the same understanding (v.1).” What was the mindset that Jesus had? And how can we arm ourselves with the same mindset that Jesus had?
  3. As Christians we constantly battle with sin. Daily we struggle to overcome temptations and the desires of the world. Identify some of the temptations and desires that may be ruling you currently. How can you overcome those stumbling blocks?
  4. Inevitably, turning from the world and living for Christ is going to lead to persecution. Peter writes here that we have used enough time living for the world, we must commit ourselves to living for Christ. How are you using your time? Are you devoted to making Christ known and battling your sin and the desires of the flesh? If not, why? What do you need in order to move forward and make the best use of your time?

End your time together by praying as a family. Pray specifically for the things that you’ve discussed (and confessed), pray for each other, and pray for our world as we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 crisis and the racial and political tensions currently facing our nation.

Parents:
  • Consider ways to leverage the time that you have with your students. How can you utilize this time to help them see Jesus/own the mission?
  • In what ways can you love/serve your neighbors? Think of some practical (and safe!) ways that you and your student(s) can be the hands and feet of Jesus at this time.
_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

SERMON NOTES: Brenton Lehman
Christ, Culture, & Compromise
Text
: 1 Peter 4:1-6 (CSB)
Campus: Rivermont

  • Christ
  • Culture
  • Compromise

“Therefore, since Christ suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same understanding …”
1 Peter 4:1a

“… because the one who suffers in the flesh is finished with sin— in order to live the remaining time in the flesh no longer for human desires, but for God’s will.”
1 Peter 4:1b-2.

The way of Jesus is the way of unrestrained surrender: there’s nothing I won’t give up to follow Jesus.

Am I willing to follow Jesus wherever he leads, no matter the cost?


“ For there has already been enough time spent in doing what the Gentiles choose to do: carrying on in unrestrained behavior, evil desires, drunkenness, orgies, carousing, and lawless idolatry.”
1 Peter 4:3

Then the way of Culture is unrestrained behavior - there’s nothing I won’t do to get to my culture’s vision of the Good Life.

“They are surprised that you don’t join them in the same flood of sin-sick living. And they slander you.”
1 Peter 4:4

Consumer Christianity uses Jesus to sanctify our idolatry.

“They will give an account to the one who stands ready to judge the living and the dead.”
1 Peter 4:5

“For this reason the gospel was also preached to those who are now dead, so that, although they might be judged in the flesh according to human standards, they might live in the spirit according to God’s standards.”
1 Peter 4:6

  • Is there one way or another that you most identify with right now?

  • Am I willing to follow Jesus wherever he leads, no matter the cost? If not, What is holding me back from going all-in with Jesus?

October 11th Sermon Guides

Kid City Notes

View all Kid City lesson videos by clicking HERE.

Lesson overview:Sunday, October 11
Bible passage:1 Peter 3:13-22

Story point:We should be nice to others always, no matter how they treat us.
Key Passage:1 Peter 3:15 - But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.

Younger Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills

Key Passage Activity:
Supplies: Paper, pen/pencil
Write the key passage:  1 Peter 3:15, on a piece of paper and have the kids repeat it after you. Practice it several times, then when you feel comfortable pass a ball around and say the verse while passing around a ball. Whoever has the ball should say the next word.
Say: People might disagree with us about a lot of different things, and they may not always treat us the way we want them to, but we should always treat others and speak to others with gentleness and respect.

Bible Story Questions: Read 1 Peter 3:13-22
  1. Why does Peter tell us to speak gently and do what is right when others have been mean to us? (Help the kids see that we should always choose to do what is right. Peter tells us that we need to respect others and do the will of God. People were not always nice to Jesus, they did not always treat Him fairly, but He loved them enough to die on the cross for their sins! We should follow His example and do what is right.)
  2. Has anyone ever been mean to you? How did that make you feel? Have you ever been mean to someone else? (We have all been hurt and we have probably all hurt other people. So, we need to do our best to be kind to others. It doesn’t feel good to be teased or bullied, so let’s remember to treat other kids at our school and our siblings as our very best friends.)
  3. How are some ways that you can treat others nicely? (Remind the kids that we know that we should treat others the way that we want to be treated. It is always nice to says something nice about someone’s clothes or to encourage one another while playing at recess.)


Older Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills
Key Passage Activity:
Supplies: Paper, Pen/Pencil
Write the key passage: 1 Peter 3:15, on a piece of paper and have the kids repeat it after you. Practice it several times, then when you feel comfortable pass a ball around and say the verse while passing around a ball. Whoever has the ball should say the next word. When you can, write the verse out on a piece of paper.
Say: People might disagree with us about a lot of different things, and they may not always treat us the way we want them to, but we should always treat others and speak to others with gentleness and respect.

Bible Story Questions: Read 1 Peter 3:13-22
  1. Why does Peter tell us to speak gently and do what is right when others have been mean to us? (Help the kids see that we should always choose to do what is right. Peter tells us that we need to respect others and do the will of God. People were not always nice to Jesus, they did not always treat Him fairly, but He loved them enough to die on the cross for their sins! We should follow His example and do what is right.)
  2. What does it mean to be gentle? (To be gentle means to be very kind. When you pet a puppy or play with or touch a baby you have to be very gentle. You can’t be rough! So, that is how we are supposed to treat each other and talk to each other.)
  3. Has anyone ever been mean to you? How did that make you feel? Have you ever been mean to someone else? (We have all been hurt and we have probably all hurt other people. So, we need to do our best to be kind to others. It doesn’t feel good to be teased or bullied, so let’s remember to treat other kids at our school and our siblings as our very best friends.)
  4. How are some ways that you can treat others nicely? (Remind the kids that we know that we should treat others the way that we want to be treated. It is always nice to says something nice about someone’s clothes or to encourage one another while playing at recess.

Activity: Scavenger Hunt
Supplies: Items around your house or yard
Go around your house and find 3 items that you think are gentle or soft then find 3 items that are rough or hard.
Soft items might be a blanket, cotton balls, stuffed animals, pillow.
Hard items might be a toy car, a lego, a book.

If you had to pick the gentle item or the hard item to snuggle with what would you choose? The soft item! Soft toys, like our favorite teddy bear or blanket help us feel safe and good. We love cuddling those things! We want to make sure the words we use and the things we do make others feel safe and comfortable with us! We want to use kind words that are welcoming. Even when others aren’t nice, we need to be nice to them.
____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Gospel Student Ministry Notes
Scripture
: 1 Peter 3:13-22
Suffering Well for the Glory of God

Intro/Overview
As a result of the fall, suffering is to be expected. And the suffering manifests itself in a lot of different ways. Whether it is through sickness and disease, pain, trauma, or ultimately death. Suffering a reality when living on this side of eternity. As believers, as the people of God, how do we respond to suffering? Especially when we feel it is undeserved?

In 1 Peter chapter 3, the apostle Peter is writing to a group of believers currently in exile. He reminds them to continuously live as a people set apart for the glory of God. He tells them to do good even in the face of adversity, and in verse 13, he says that people won’t generally persecute you or harm you if you are committed to doing good at all times. However, even if you do face persecution for your good/righteous behavior it is really a blessing. Think about how counterintuitive and counter-cultural that really is. Peter reminds his readers to keep their minds focused on Christ Jesus, the suffering servant.

Peter also reminds believers to be ready. We must be ready to defend the hope that is inside of each of us. But Peter makes sure to tell this group of exiles that even the way that they defend their hope matters. He says to do it with gentleness and respect (v. 15). Conducting ourselves in a God-honoring, Christ-like manner at all times is what we are called to do as the people of God. This is an incredibly important point, especially as we wrestle through some of the political and racial tensions that are currently plaguing our country. The way that we interact with and respond to others (especially those that don’t agree or even mistreat us) says a lot about our relationship with Christ. Peter knew it was necessary to point those exiles to their external behavior and how important it is to conduct ourselves accordingly at all times.

Finally, we are reminded of the most important truth or reality of the Christian walk: suffering well is really following the example of Christ Jesus. In verse 18 Peter says that Christ also suffered as the righteous for the unrighteous. Christ, the perfect, spotless, son of God was persecuted, ridiculed and crucified for all of the good that He did. In fact, He was crucified and killed to save and redeem His very accusers. He endured suffering for the glory that awaited Him and ultimately for the glory of God. That is the kind of radical kindness and peace that we are to pursue with others. As the people of God, we are to endure suffering even if it comes on account of our good deeds.

Discussion Questions
Read 1 Peter 3:13-22
Reflect on these verses


These questions are meant to generate conversations with your students.
  1. What is your view of suffering? Share some examples of how you may have suffered unjustly in your lifetime. How did you respond?
  2. Peter tells us to continue to do good even when we are mistreated, because this is a blessed thing. Can you think of some times in your life where you were able to do this?
  3. As Christians, we have a blessed hope in Christ Jesus. Here, Peter tells us that we should be ready to defend that hope at all times. How can we gently and respectfully defend ourselves?
  4. When we suffer for doing well, this really makes us just like Christ. In what way has Christ suffered unjustly, and what does that mean for us as believers?

As Christians, our hope and our confidence should ultimately rest in Christ Jesus.

End your time together by praying as a family. Pray specifically for the things that you’ve discussed (and confessed), pray for each other, and pray for our world as we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 crisis and the racial and political tensions currently facing our nation.

Parents:
  • Consider ways to leverage the time that you have with your students. How can you utilize this time to help them see Jesus/own the mission?
  • In what ways can you love/serve your neighbors? Think of some practical (and safe!) ways that you and your student(s) can be the hands and feet of Jesus at this time.
____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Sermon Notes: Brenton Lehman
Nothing to Lose, Nothing to Prove
Text:
1 Peter 3:13-22
Campus: Rivermont

Do I know Jesus? Are there ways in which I have settled for knowing only things about him?

Jesus, I want to know you more.


“Who then will harm you if you are devoted to what is good?”
1 Peter 3:13

 “But even if you should suffer for righteousness, you are blessed.”
1 Peter 3:14a

 “Do not fear what they fear or be intimidated”
1 Peter 3:14b

2019 Top 5 Fears. (click here)

What is it that I fear?

 “But in your hearts regard Christ the Lord as holy”
1 Peter 3:15a

Awe in the presence of the real Jesus is more powerful than fear of people or circumstances.

To help overcome fear in highly anxious times, make space to be with Jesus.

 “Ready at any time to give a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you.”
1 Peter 3:15b

To be with Jesus is to be transformed by his perfect love, which drives out fear, settles our hearts, and makes us peaceful, non-anxious people.

“Yet do this with gentleness and reverence, keeping a clear conscience, so that when you are accused,[a] those who disparage your good conduct in Christ will be put to shame.”
1 Peter 3:16

Our gentleness, respect, and humble integrity is what will dismantle the hostility in this world.

“For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will, than for doing evil.”
1 Peter 3:17

No matter how high the stakes, followers of Jesus, rooted deeply in him, can be a peaceful, non-anxious presence and model a curious and attractive hope.

The good news of the gospel: In Jesus, we have nothing to lose and nothing to prove.

Abiding in Jesus produces the fruit of a peaceful, non-anxious, differentiated, and surprisingly hopeful life even in highly anxious and even unjust circumstances.


 “For Christ also suffered for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring you to God.”
1 Peter 3:18a

 “He was put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit”
1 Peter 3:18b

“in which[a] he also went and made proclamation to the spirits in prison 20 who in the past were disobedient, when God patiently waited in the days of Noah while the ark was being prepared. In it a few—that is, eight people[b]—were saved through water.”
1 Peter 3:19-20

By his death, Jesus is our reconciliation to God and our redemption from sin, and by his resurrection, he is our victory over sin and death now and in the age to come.

“Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you (not as the removal of dirt from the body, but the pledge[a] of a good conscience toward God) through the resurrection of Jesus Christ,”
1 Peter 3:21

Baptism (click here)

“who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God with angels, authorities, and powers subject to him.”
1 Peter 3:22

With the real Jesus, the good news of the gospel is that we have nothing to lose and nothing to prove.

October 4th Sermon Guides

Kid City Notes

View all Kid City lesson videos by clicking HERE.

Lesson overview:Sunday, October 4
Bible passage:1 Peter 3:8-12
Story point:We need to see and pursue peace.
Key Passage:1 Peter 3:9 Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing.



Younger Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills
Key Passage Activity:
Supplies: Paper, pen/pencil
Write the key passage:1 Peter 3:9 on a piece of paper and have the kids repeat it after you.
Say: Peter calls us to live in peace and unity with one another. We are to love others and to bless others.

Bible Story Questions: Read 1 Peter 3:8-12
  1. What does it look like to treat others well? (Discuss how you like being treated and how you should treat others).
  2. Do you know what retaliate means? When someone mistreats us what should we do? (Retaliate means to hurt or mistreat others because they hurt us. Peter tells us to seek peace. When someone does something to us, we need to forgive.)
  3. How can we bless and care for others? (Forgiving others blesses them, doing good blesses others. Imitating Christ is a way that we can bless others.)

Activity: Hang Man
Supplies: Paper & Pencils or a Whiteboard
Play several rounds of Hang Man, choose words that help reinforce how we should treat one another.

Olderer Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills
Key Passage Activity:
Supplies: Paper, pen/pencil
Write the key passage: 1 Peter 3:9 on a piece of paper and have the kids repeat it after you.
Say: Peter calls us to live in peace and unity with one another. We are to love others and to bless 0thers.

Bible Story Questions: Read 1 Peter 3:8-12
  1. What does it look like to treat others well? (Discuss how you like being treated and how you should treat others).
  2. Do you know what retaliate means? When someone mistreats us what should we do? (Retaliate means to hurt or mistreat others because they hurt us. Peter tells us to seek peace. When someone does something to us, we need to forgive.)
  3. How can we bless and care for others? (Forgiving others blesses them, doing good blesses others. Imitating Christ is a way that we can  bless others.)

Activity: Hang Man
Supplies: Paper & Pencils or a Whiteboard
Play several rounds of Hang Man, choose words that help reinforce how we should treat one another.

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Gospel Student Ministries Notes
Scripture
: 1 Peter 3:8-12
Doing Good in the Face of Adversity

Intro/Overview 
It can be really hard to be nice to people all the time. Even when people aren’t intentionally doing something to harm or wrong you, if you spend enough time with someone, they will eventually aggravate you in some way (I think a lot of us figured this out during quarantine with our families). So, how do we respond when people don’t just aggravate or frustrate us, but they mistreat us? How do we react to evil, suffering, and persecution?

Naturally, as sinful people operating in our flesh, we retaliate. When someone harms or wrongs us, our desire is revenge. We feel that justice isn’t served until we reciprocate. But as the people of God, we are to live by a different standard. God calls His people to do good towards others at all times. Even when people present you with evil, we are to bless them continuously.

In 1 Peter 3, the apostle Peter is writing a group of exiles continuously encouraging them to live in such a way that God is glorified. Here he reminds them (and us) of the importance of unity and brotherly love (v. 8). As the people of God, brothers and sisters in Christ, we must pursue unity amongst believers. It is important for us to build on the foundation of the Gospel message, and be unified in this truth. Remembering the abundant grace and forgiveness we have received in and through Christ is what compels us to repay people with good even though they deserve evil.

Peter says we have been called to this life of humility and sacrifice. When we continue to do good and bless even those that persecute us, we are simply following the example of Christ. Jesus came to bring peace where there was conflict. As sinful people, born in opposition to God, we were His enemies, destined for death and destruction. But by the blood of Christ we are now at peace with God Romans 5:1 tells us. Just God Himself made peace with us, as the people of God we are to seek and pursue peace (v.11), especially with those that have wronged us. Suffering for doing well, doing good for the sake of others is how we show Christ to the world.

Discussion Questions
Read 1 Peter 3:8-12
Reflect on these verses


These questions are meant to generate conversations with your students.
  1. Peter begins this section of his letter by telling his readers to be unified, tender hearted, and to show love and sympathy towards one another. Why is this so important to this idea of suffering for the sake of righteousness?
  2. Can you think of a time where you repaid someone for what they did to you? What could you have done instead of retaliating?
  3. As God’s people we are told to seek peace continuously. How can we do this (what compels us)? And how does this show people Christ/the Gospel?
  4. The face of the Lord is upon the righteous. However, we know that in our own strength, we have no righteousness of our own. So how can one be counted among the righteous? Is it simply by doing good? Praying a lot? Etc.

As Christians, our hope and our confidence should ultimately rest in Christ Jesus.

End your time together by praying as a family. Pray specifically for the things that you’ve discussed (and confessed), pray for each other, and pray for our world as we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 crisis and the racial and political tensions currently facing our nation.


Parents:
  • Consider ways to leverage the time that you have with your students. How can you utilize this time to help them see Jesus/own the mission?
  • In what ways can you love/serve your neighbors? Think of some practical (and safe!) ways that you and your student(s) can be the hands and feet of Jesus at this time.
___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Sermon Notes: Preston Burling
Title:
Faith in Exile
Text: 1 Peter 3:8-12
Campus: Rivermont

 “American Christians have softened their practice and their sudden and quick decline raises questions for urgent implications.”  ~Barna Group

Jerusalem Perspective vs Exilic Perspective: Click here for picture

Saint Benedict: Click here for picture 

“Christians today are on the losing side of the culture, right now, we are going to have to start seeing ourselves as a people in exile to move forward… If we continue to live in the world as if nothing has changed, or is wrong, we are at risk of losing our faith.” ~Rod Dreher, The Benedict Option.

“Finally, all of you be like-minded and sympathetic, love one another, and be compassionate and humble, not paying back evil for evil or insult for insult but, on the contrary, giving a blessing, since you were called for this, so that you may inherit a blessing.
For the one who wants to love life
and to see good days,
let him keep his tongue from evil
and his lips from speaking deceit,
and let him turn away from evil
and do what is good.
Let him seek peace and pursue it,
because the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous
and his ears are open to their prayer.
But the face of the Lord is against
those who do what is evil.”
1 Peter 3:8-12 (CSB)

Why these five adjectives?
Like-minded, sympathetic, love one another, compassionate, humble
  1. It’s these characteristics that root the Christian community in being a place of refuge and support, for the exilic disciple of Jesus
There is no chasm too deep, too wide or too high that the cross of Jesus doesn’t eclipse.

Why these five adjectives?
Like-minded, sympathetic, love one another, compassionate, humble
  1. It’s these characteristic that root the Christian community in being a place of refuge and support, for the exilic disciple of Jesus
  2. These five adjectives will help reinforce Christian cohesion within the church family, ultimately preparing us to stand firm in the midst of adversity and hostility.

Like-mindedness
  1. Cohesion within the community of faith
  2. Subverts cohesion to the world around us
Like-mindedness comes from our commonality “under one Lord”, it is the mind and Spirit of Christ that we share.
“differentiation is understanding yourself in a way in which you remain connected to people, yet your reactions or behaviors are determined by others. It’s the ability to be calm and consistent in what you think and feel, not demanding or even forcing others to think and be the same way.” ~Pete Scazerro
Our Pursuit to be like-minded should subvert our tendency to dig chasms between brothers and sisters and Christ.

Sympathetic
Love One another
Compassionate
Humble


“not paying back evil for evil or insult for insult but, on the contrary, giving a blessing, since you were called for this, so that you may inherit a blessing.”
1 Peter 3:9 (CSB)

As the family of God, as you sojourn in this foreign land, you too will be delivered in due time because of your affliction that you experience from your faith in God.

We are called to live out this inherited blessing to both one another and to the outside world. We bless because we have been blessed.
The most powerful tool for social change is going to come in the way that we “bless others.”

It is very difficult to give blessing when we haven’t understood and experienced the blessing given to us by the Lord.

Question for reflection:
Do I truly believe in the eternal blessing of inheritance that God has promised me? If no, then what is Jesus asking me to do right now? If yes, then does my life model a blessing to the family of God and to the watching world?


September 27th Sermon Guides

Kid City Notes

View all Kid City lesson videos by clicking 
HERE.

Lesson overview:Sunday, September 27, 2020
Bible passage:1 Peter 3:1-7
Story point:It is better when we love, honor and respect each other. God made us different for a reason!
Key Passage:1 Peter 3:8 Finally, all of you have unity of mind, sympathy and brotherly love, a tender heart and a humble mind.

Younger Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills
Key Passage Activity:
          Supplies: 
Paper, pen/pencil
Write the key passage, 1 Peter 3:8, on a piece of paper and have the kids repeat it after you. Then take a ball and pass it around and whoever has the ball must say the next word until the verse is complete.
         Say: God made men and women to be husband and wives. Husbands and wives each have different roles, but they are called to love and respect one another. God wants us to love and respect all others.

Bible Story Questions:
1.  Why should we care about this passage about husbands and wives? (Because all boys have friends that are girls and all boys have friends that are girls. Mr. Trevor even said that some of you might get married, so it is good to learn how to treat other people with respect.)
2.  Do you know what honor means? (It means respecting, treating them well, and caring about their feelings. In the book of Romans we are told to “outdo one another in showing honor.” We are supposed to care about other people and their feelings and making sure we are caring about them. )
3.  How can you honor others? (Parents, discuss different ways to care about others - sharing, complementing, helping, being kind.)
 
4.  Who did God create in His image? (Boys and girls are both made in His image. Even those boys and girls are different, both boys and girls show us parts of God’s character. So, we need to be glad that we are different because we can see more of who God is in some of our differences!)
 
Activity: Paper Chains
     Supplies
: Strips of Paper, and glue or tape, pen
On strips of paper write down the different things that make you feel respected and loved. Ex. Playing nicely, sharing, cleaning up together, using kind words. Hang up your paper chain so you can see throughout the week different ways we can show our family members love and respect.
      Say: God has created everyone in His image. We need to love and respect others.

Older Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills
Key Passage Activity:
     Supplies - Paper, pen/pencil
Write the key passage,1 Peter 3:8, on a piece of paper and have the kids repeat it after you. Then take a ball and pass it around and whoever has the ball must say the next word until the verse is complete.
     Say - God made men and women to be husband and wives. Husbands and wives each have different roles, but they are called to love and respect one another. God wants us to love and respect all others.

Bible Story Questions:
1.  Why should we care about this passage about husbands and wives? (Because all boys have friends that are girls and all boys have friends that are girls. Mr. Trevor even said that some of you might get married, so it is good to learn how to treat other people with respect.)
2.  Do you know what honor means? (It means respecting, treating them well, and caring about their feelings. In the book of Romans we are told to “outdo one another in showing honor.” We are supposed to care about other people and their feelings and making sure we are caring about them. )
3.  How can you honor others? (Parents, discuss different ways to care about others - sharing, complementing, helping, being kind.)
4.  Who did God create in His image? (Boys and girls are both made in His image. Even those boys and girls are different, both boys and girls show us parts of God’s character. So, we need to be glad that we are different because we can see more of who God is in some of our differences!)

Activity: Paper Chains
     Supplies: Strips of Paper, and glue or tape, pen
On strips of paper write down the different things that make you feel respected and loved. Ex. Playing nicely, sharing, cleaning up together, using kind words. Hang up your paper chain so you can see throughout the week different ways we can show our family members love and respect.
      Say: God has created everyone in His image. We need to love and respect others.

___________________________________________________________________

Gospel Student Ministry Notes
Scripture:
1 Peter 3:1-7
Honorable Submission Through the Covenant of Marriage

Intro/Overview
We can learn a lot from marriage, particularly a Christ-centered, God-honoring marriage. The institution of marriage is a sacred covenant not only between a man and a woman, but also the God that created them. This union is meant to represent the relationship between Christ and His bride, the Church. A godly, and Biblical marriage should be a living and breathing demonstration of the Gospel message. Husbands and wives should be continuously showing one another grace, forgiveness, and unconditional love as they point one another to Jesus. However, this can be incredibly difficult when you consider that every marriage consists of two sinful people, and even in some cases, this is made more difficult when one individual is a believer and the other is not.

In the 1 Peter 3, Peter, as he is writing to the exiles, reminds his readers of the importance of godly and holy conduct (a theme throughout this letter). But here in chapter 3, Peter shifts his focus to believing husbands and wives. He begins by telling wives to submit to their husbands, even the ones that aren’t believers. This can be incredibly difficult. Submitting to authority is difficult in itself, but that can become even more frustrating when you’re asked to submit to someone you don’t agree with. Peter points out something really helpful here and really essential to the Christian life. He says in verse 1, that wives can win over their husbands without a word, simply by their reverent and godly behavior.

Peter then goes on to say, in verse 7, that husbands should live with their wives “in an understanding way, as with a weaker partner, showing them honor.” I think it’s important to have the right idea of the word “weaker” that is used here. Now, this does not mean that women are of any lesser value, importance, or intelligence than men. While women are fully equal to men as image bearers of God and heirs to the kingdom, because they are physically weaker, men have a duty to protect, provide, and care for their wives.

The main idea here is simple: the way that we treat each other matters. The way that we respond to those that mistreat us or don’t agree with us, or don’t believe what we believe, essentially makes a statement about Jesus and our actions/conduct have a massive impact on others. Respond to others graciously and humbly, especially when they least deserve it, is how we can be a living demonstration of the Gospel. This goes beyond the covenant of marriage, as we have the opportunity to show Christ to people daily, in all of our earthly relationships.

Discussion Questions
Read 1 Peter 3:1-7
Reflect on these verses


These questions are meant to generate conversations with your students.
  1. Why is godly conduct so important? What does your conduct/behavior say about your relationship with Jesus?
  2. Within the covenant of marriage, husbands and wives have the opportunity to point each other to Christ daily. However, we can also do this in other relationships as well. Name some people in your life that you are in relationship with, that you could demonstrate the Gospel for more consistently. 
  3. How can you use your conduct and your response to conflict/confrontation to point people to Jesus? 
  4. What is our motivation for being understanding, forgiving, gracious to people especially when they least deserve it?

As Christians, our hope and our confidence should ultimately rest in Christ Jesus.

End your time together by praying as a family. Pray specifically for the things that you’ve discussed (and confessed), pray for each other, and pray for our world as we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 crisis and the racial and political tensions currently facing our nation.


Parents:
  • Consider ways to leverage the time that you have with your students. How can you utilize this time to help them see Jesus/own the mission?
  • In what ways can you love/serve your neighbors? Think of some practical (and safe!) ways that you and your student(s) can be the hands and feet of Jesus at this time.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Sermon Notes
Text: 1 Peter 3:1-7
Campus: Rivermont

In the same way, wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands so that, even if some disobey the word, they may be won over without a word by the way their wives live
2 when they observe your pure, reverent lives.
3 Don’t let your beauty consist of outward things like elaborate hairstyles and wearing gold jewelry or fine clothes,
4 but rather what is inside the heart[a]—the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.
5 For in the past, the holy women who put their hope in God also adorned themselves in this way, submitting to their own husbands,
6 just as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord. You have become her children when you do what is good and do not fear any intimidation.
7 Husbands, in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with a weaker partner, showing them honor as coheirs of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.







September 20th Sermon Guides

Kid City Notes

View all Kid City lesson videos by clicking HERE


Lesson overview:

Sunday, September 20

Bible passage:

1 Peter 2:12-25

Story point:

We need to do what is right and respect the authority. Peter tells us that they have been put over us for a reason. 

Key Passage:

1 Peter 2:15 "For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people."



Younger Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills

Key Passage Activity: 

Supplies - Paper, pen/pencil

Write the key passage, 1 Peter 2:15, on a piece of paper and have the kids repeat it after you. Then, roll it up and have the kids close their eyes. Hide the paper somewhere in the room for them to find. As they get closer to the verse, say “warmer.” As they get farther away from the verse say “colder” until they find the verse. Read it together when it’s found            

Say - God has put certain leaders and authorities over us, and our job is to submit to those authorities and do good. If we do good, then people can’t hold anything against us because we did what was good even in difficult circumstances. 

Bible Story Questions: Read 1 Peter 2:12-25


1. What does authority mean? Can you name 3 authorities over you? (Authorities are those people that are put in positions of leadership over you. Parents, teachers, police officers, governors, and the president are all examples.)


2. Pastor Brandon talks about verse 14, what does this verse and Pastor Brandon say about those in a position of authority?  (Leaders have been put in these positions to encourage doing good and to punish bad behavior. In verse 14 it says that  the authority is there to encourage doing good )


3. When you do good and face hardship or tough times whose example are you following? (You are following the example of Jesus.)

Activity: Simon Says

      Supplies: None

Play several rounds of Simon Says. Let the winner be the next Simon. Play several rounds. 

      Say: In Simon says, we practice listening to Simon. When he says something, we do it. It takes practice to be obedient. Sometimes it can be hard, but obeying the authorities in our lives, like our parents is very important. They care about us and want the best for us. 


______________________________________________________________________________________

Gospel Student Ministry Notes
Scripture: John 17:14-19
The Word of Truth

 
Intro/Overview 
What is truth? This is such an incredibly crucial question, especially at a time like this. It is no secret that our world is currently divided on a lot of issues. Being an election year, take for example, the two presidential candidates. Whenever you turn on your television, you are immediately overwhelmed by these campaign ads. In these promotions, it is usually one candidate attempting to make themself look better by smearing their opponent. These campaigns are consistently full of accusations and assault the character of the candidates to persuade people to vote one way or the other. But how can we know what is true, and what is not?

There are so many political, social, and even theological issues that are causing friction amongst us. The world has its own version of truth, and even as individuals we have a truth that is convenient for each of us. And while we each hold our own individual opinions/beliefs, how can we find truth? The reality is there is only one real, legitimate, objective truth, and the Scriptures are clear in pointing us toward God’s word as the truth. In fact, the word “truth” appears in the Bible more times 200 times. Understanding truth is certainly important as the people of God.

In John chapter 17, moments before He is betrayed and arrested, Jesus prays for His disciples. He goes before God the Father on their behalf, praying that God would keep them, strengthen them, and care for them as they continue to live His mission is a fallen and broken world. Jesus also prays for their sanctification on two occasions (v. 17 & v. 19). The idea of sanctification is setting apart something for a particular use. As believers we are set apart to serve the Lord and as we grow (and we are sanctified), we have a growing desire to obey God’s commands and walk in holiness.

But here, Jesus prays for specific sanctification, He prays that God would sanctify them “in the truth (v.17).” And again in verse 19 He prays “that they also may be sanctified in truth.” This is so important, especially when we consider the current social and cultural pressures that we are facing. We must be saturated with the truth of God’s word. His written and revealed word has given us the truth about Christ the Son, and it is the Scriptures that inform the way that we view all of the things that we are seeing happening in our world today. It is God’s desire that we know and cling to the truth. As believers we must not be swayed or persuaded by the world and its empty ideologies. Instead, we must be sanctified in the truth, God’s truth.

Discussion Questions 
Read John 17:14-19
Reflect on these verses


These questions are meant to generate conversations with your students.

  1. What is your definition of truth? Where do you turn to seek truth? 
  2. In 2020, there is a lot of pressure to conform to your own version of truth. How does the world’s “truth” differ from God’s truth?
  3. Why is it so important for us to have an accurate and biblical understanding of truth? 

As Christians, our hope and our confidence should ultimately rest in Christ Jesus. 

End your time together by praying as a family. Pray specifically for the things that you’ve discussed (and confessed), pray for each other, and pray for our world as we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 crisis and the racial and political tensions currently facing our nation. 


Parents:
  • Consider ways to leverage the time that you have with your students. How can you utilize this time to help them see Jesus/own the mission? 
  • In what ways can you love/serve your neighbors? Think of some practical (and safe!) ways that you and your student(s) can be the hands and feet of Jesus at this time. 


__________________________________________________________________________________

Sermon Notes, September 20, 2020
"Submission and Suffering in Exile"
Text: 
1 Peter 2:11-25
Campus: 
Rivermont

“Dear friends, I urge you as strangers and exiles to abstain from sinful desires that wage war against the soul.”
1 Peter 2:11

Image: Exilic Discipleship

https://storage.snappages.site/MK36D3/assets/images/3204774_1398x710_2500.png


“Conduct yourselves honorably among the Gentiles, so that when they slander you as evildoers, they will observe your good works and will glorify God on the day he visits.”
1 Peter 2:12.

“Submit to every human authority because of the Lord, whether to the emperor as the supreme authority or to governors as those sent out by him to punish those who do what is evil and to praise those who do what is good. For it is God’s will that you silence the ignorance of foolish people by doing good. Submit as free people, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but as God’s slaves. Honor everyone. Love the brothers and sisters. Fear God. Honor the emperor.”
1 Peter 2:13-17.

“For it is God’s will that you silence the ignorance of foolish people by doing good.”
1 Peter 2:15.

“Submit as free people, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but as God’s slaves.”
1 Peter 2:16.

“Household slaves, submit to your masters with all reverence not only to the good and gentle ones but also to the cruel. For it brings favor if, because of a consciousness of God, someone endures grief from suffering unjustly. For what credit is there if when you do wrong and are beaten, you endure it? But when you do what is good and suffer, if you endure it, this brings favor with God.
For you were called to this, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps. He did not commit sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth;  when he was insulted, he did not insult in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten but entrusted himself to the one who judges justly. He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree; so that, having died to sins, we might live for righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.”
1 Peter 2:18-24.

What Peter and the whole Bible teaches, if we take it seriously, is that every human being, slave or free, male or female, are equal in dignity, value, and worth.

“He did not commit sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth;  when he was insulted, he did not insult in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten but entrusted himself to the one who judges justly. He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree; so that, having died to sins, we might live for righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.
1 Peter 2:22-24.

Christ suffered unjustly for us, in love, to bring about our healing, our freedom. This is the good news of our new and living hope - no unearned suffering or submission to any unjust authority can steal our freedom, our peace, our joy. Not in Jesus. He understands it, bore up under it willingly, and overcame it, and his is the victory.

September 13th Sermon Guides

Kid City Notes

View all Kid City lesson videos by clicking HERE


Lesson overview:

Sunday, September 13

Bible passage:

1 Peter 2:12-25

Story point:

We need to do what is right and respect the authority. Peter tells us that they have been put over us for a reason. 

Key Passage:

1 Peter 2:15 "For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people."



Younger Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills

Key Passage Activity: 

Supplies - Paper, pen/pencil

Write the key passage, 1 Peter 2:15, on a piece of paper and have the kids repeat it after you. Then, roll it up and have the kids close their eyes. Hide the paper somewhere in the room for them to find. As they get closer to the verse, say “warmer.” As they get farther away from the verse say “colder” until they find the verse. Read it together when it’s found            

Say - God has put certain leaders and authorities over us, and our job is to submit to those authorities and do good. If we do good, then people can’t hold anything against us because we did what was good even in difficult circumstances. 

Bible Story Questions: Read 1 Peter 2:12-25


1. What does authority mean? Can you name 3 authorities over you? (Authorities are those people that are put in positions of leadership over you. Parents, teachers, police officers, governors, and the president are all examples.)


2. Pastor Brandon talks about verse 14, what does this verse and Pastor Brandon say about those in a position of authority?  (Leaders have been put in these positions to encourage doing good and to punish bad behavior. In verse 14 it says that  the authority is there to encourage doing good )


3. When you do good and face hardship or tough times whose example are you following? (You are following the example of Jesus.)

Activity: Simon Says

      Supplies: None

Play several rounds of Simon Says. Let the winner be the next Simon. Play several rounds. 

      Say: In Simon says, we practice listening to Simon. When he says something, we do it. It takes practice to be obedient. Sometimes it can be hard, but obeying the authorities in our lives, like our parents is very important. They care about us and want the best for us. 


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Gospel Student Ministry Notes
Sunday September 13th GSM Notes
Scripture: 1 Peter 2:12-25
Submission and Authority

Intro/Overview
Submission is hard. It has been that way from the very beginning of time. If we go back to Genesis 3, and the fall of man, we find that Adam and Eve failed to submit to God’s authority and obey His command. It is in the nature of man to demand his own way. Submission becomes increasingly difficult when you disagree with those in authority over you. It is one thing to submit to those who share the same perspective, but submitting to those you aren’t in agreement with is nearly impossible, in our flesh.

In 1 Peter 2, the apostle writes to a group of believers that have been scattered about; they are in exile in different parts of the continent. As a result, they are under the rule of some foreign authorities. Obviously, there will be a difference of opinion between those that follow Christ and those that govern the world. But here in chapter 2, Peter does not tell these believers to fight against these authorities, and he doesn’t tell them to riot or promote civil disobedience. Instead, Peter reminds them to submit to their authority figures, “for the Lord’s sake (verse 13).”

Romans 13 tells us that every human institution, all governments, rulers, and any other authorities have been put in place by God (who is the ultimate authority!). We are reminded to keep our conduct honorable and appropriate at all times, even when we are under the rule of authorities that we don’t agree with. Considering the current political landscape, this hits pretty close to home, and is a timely reminder for many people. In maintaining peace and living lives of holiness and obedience, God is glorified. Not only that, Peter tells us that when we continue to do good, under the rule of those who are seemingly in opposition to us, we silence our critics (1 Peter 2:15).

Peter continues to expound upon this idea of enduring suffering and submitting to authority for the glory of God, by pointing us to the suffering Servant, Christ Jesus. When we suffer for doing good and endure those momentary afflictions, it is a good and gracious thing in the sight of the Lord (1 Peter 2:19). Peter says that when we do this, we are simply following the example that Christ has set for us. Jesus, who is the perfect, sinless, Son of God endured the pain of the cross, though He had done no wrong. On the cross, Jesus bore the weight of our sins, so that we would die to sin and live to righteousness (1 Peter 2:24). Let this be what compels us to live in peace and submission to those in authority over us, imitating Christ Jesus.

Discussion Questions
Read 1 Peter 2:12-25
Reflect on these verses

These questions are meant to generate conversations with your students.
  1. God has instituted every form of authority, whether it be government, rulers, kings, etc. Because God is the ultimate authority, we are to submit to those human institutions. What are some of the authority figures in your life? 
  2. It can be difficult to submit when we disagree. Have you found it hard to joyfully submit to some of those authorities in your own life? Why? (Maybe name some of the ways these human institutions have been unjust)
  3. Suffering under unjust conditions is glorifying to God. In His sight, this is a good and glorious thing. In what ways can we continue to submit obediently even when we don’t agree or we are facing difficulties? (What motivates us to do this?)
  4. Peter ends chapter 2 by pointing us back to Jesus. He says that Christ did not repay evil for evil, that even though He was the perfect, sinless Son of God, He suffered and endured the cross for the glory of God. Knowing what Christ has done for you, (and the selfless, sacrificial way that He did), how does this impact the way that you live and view the authorities in your own life? 


As Christians, our hope and our confidence should ultimately rest in Christ Jesus.

End your time together by praying as a family. Pray specifically for the things that you’ve discussed (and confessed), pray for each other, and pray for our world as we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 crisis and the racial and political tensions currently facing our nation.

Parents:

  • Consider ways to leverage the time that you have with your students. How can you utilize this time to help them see Jesus/own the mission? 
  • In what ways can you love/serve your neighbors? Think of some practical (and safe!) ways that you and your student(s) can be the hands and feet of Jesus at this time. 

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Sermon Notes, September 13, 2020
"The Way of the Kingdom"
Text: Matthew 22:15-20
Campus: Rivermont


Telos: ultimate object or aim

Jesus went into Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God: “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news.”

Mark 1:14-15

Matthew 22:15-17

Key question: What is the way of Jesus when facing complex questions in highly anxious times?

How do I react when I’m confronted with a perspective that disagrees with my own on an issue of great importance to me?

If the intention of the question is to identify places of division, If that’s the posture, then maybe I don’t engage, at least not on those terms.

Am I asking questions about complex issues with genuine curiosity and humility—looking for places of agreement and oneness—or and I looking for places of division?

Matthew 21:24-27

Am I prepared to walk away if it isn’t the right time or place to engage a complex issue?

Before I engage, have I accepted that reality, I may end up being misunderstood or misinterpreted?

“So Christians are pushed toward two main options [in a two party political system]. One is to withdraw and try to be apolitical. The second is to assimilate and fully adopt one party’s whole package in order to have your place at the table. Neither of these options is valid…"

 [The way of Jesus will] inevitably require us to participate in political process.

If we experience exclusion and even persecution for doing so, we are assured that God is with us (Matthew 5:10-11) and that some will still see our “good deeds and glorify God” (1 Peter 2:11-12).

If we are only offensive or only attractive to the world and not both, we can be sure we are failing to live as we ought.

The Gospel gives us the resources to love people who reject both our beliefs and us personally.

"Christians should think of how God rescued them. He did it not by taking power but by coming to earth, losing glory and power, serving and dying on a cross. How did Jesus save? Not with a sword but with nails in his hands.”
-Dr. Timothy Keller, "How do Christians Fit in a Two-Party System? They Don’t." Published in the New York Times.


Matthew 22:19-21.

Image: First Century Denarius

Q: Where have I been unwilling to see an issue from another’s perspective, until they feel respected & understood (even if I still disagree)?

Q: Where have I been unwilling to see an issue from another’s perspective, until they feel respected & understood (even if I still disagree)?

Q: What might that say about my heart?

  1. Cultivate Diverse Community
  1. Practice Silence & Solitude
  1. Read, Study, and Meditate on the Scriptures


September 6th Sermon Guides

Kid City Notes

View all Kid City lesson videos by clicking HERE

Lesson overview:

Sunday, September 6

Bible passage:

Matthew 28:16-20

Story point:

God gave you and me a message that we get to share with the whole world. As disciples of Christ, we get to tell others of Christ’s love, that he died for us, and that we can have a relationship with him. 

Key Passage:

Matthew 28:19 - Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 



Younger Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills

Key Passage Activity: 

          Supplies: Paper and pencil

Write out the words of the key passage on a piece of paper. Practice it several times, then have then choose one word at a time to erase. 

          Say: Before Jesus ascended (went up) to heaven, he gave his disciples, and us a job, and that job is to share the Gospel. He told us to go and tell others about His love for us. 

Bible Story Questions: 


  1. Do you know what a disciple is?? (A disciple is a follower. We are all followers of Jesus. So, we are Jesus’ disciples. )

 

  1. Why do you think it is important to tell others about Jesus? (Jesus loves us, he came to earth to die for us just so we could have a relationship with him. That is some great news, and it is important to share good news. When something great happens, like we get a present or we win a game we celebrate and tell everyone. Jesus’ love for us and salvation is the very best news there can ever be!)


  1. What are some examples of things that disciples do? (In the book of John we are told by Jesus that others will know we are his disciples by our love for others. Parents, talk for a few minutes about things that make us disciples.)


Activity Choice:  Show and Tell 

Have the kids tell us 3-4 reasons why they love this item, and why they picked it for show and tell. 

      Supplies: Something you love or are very proud of! (If you are in church, draw a picture of this). 

      Say-  Isn’t it great to share about things we love? We were all so excited to tell one another about our favorite toy, or game and we loved sharing it with each other. God loves us so much and he shared his son, Jesus, with us. Now, it is our turn to share Jesus’ love with others.  



Older Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills

Key Passage Activity: 

          Supplies: Paper and pencil

Write out the words of the key passage on a piece of paper. Practice it several times, then have then choose one word at a time to erase. 

          Say: Before Jesus ascended to heaven, he gave his disciples, and us a commandment is to share the Gospel. He told us to go and tell others about His love for us.

Bible Story Questions:


  1. Do you know what a disciple is?? (A disciple is a follower. We are all followers of Jesus. So, we are Jesus’ disciples. )

 

  1. Why do you think it is important to tell others about Jesus? (Jesus loves us, he came to earth to die for us just so we could have a relationship with him. That is some great news, and it is important to share good news. When something great happens, like we get a present or we win a game we celebrate and tell everyone. Jesus’ love for us and salvation is the very best news there can ever be!)


  1. What are some examples of things that disciples do? (In the book of John we are told by Jesus that others will know we are his disciples by our love for others. Parents, talk for a few minutes about things that make us disciples.)

Activity Choice:  Show and Tell 

Have the kids tell us 3-4 reasons why they love this item, and why they picked it for show and tell. 

      Supplies: Something you love or are very proud of! (If you are in church, draw a picture of this). 

      Say-  Isn’t it great to share about things we love? We were all so excited to tell one another about our favorite toy, or game and we loved sharing it with each other. God loves us so much and he shared his son, Jesus, with us. Now, it is our turn to share Jesus’ love with others.  


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Gospel Student Ministry Notes
Sunday September 6th GSM Notes
Scripture: Matthew 28:16-20
The Great Commission

Intro/Overview:
If you’ve ever watched any kind of spy movie/television show, then you know how exciting those programs can be. I think about films like Mission Impossible, all of the James Bond films, the Jason Bourne trilogy starring Matt Damon, just to name a few. These movies and shows always begin with the main character being given some kind of mission to complete. And this mission usually involves risking their life and going through some pretty treacherous circumstances. The risk that these individuals are willing to take, and the dangerous circumstances they endure really show just how important the mission is.

The truth is, as followers of Christ, we too have been given an incredible mission to carry out. In Matthew chapter 28, Jesus stands before his disciples after He has resurrected from the dead, and pronounces that He has all authority in heaven and on earth (28:18). With the authority that He has, Jesus gives His followers a mission. He instructs them to go out into the world, among the nations and make disciples. He tells them to teach people His words/commandments and show them what it means to follow Christ.

Just as it was the mission of the 11 disciples, it is the mission that has been entrusted to all believers. For everyone that claims to be a follower of Christ, this Great Commission from Matthew 28 is central to the life of the Christian. This should really inform all that we do, and impact the way that we live. Because this mission is so important, it has eternal meaning and is truly life or death, we should be willing to risk it all and endure the most difficult circumstances in order to make Christ known.

For many of us, we want to own this mission, but we do not know how. A lot of Christians feel unequipped, and going out into the world to tell people about Jesus feels incredibly intimidating. Just as a secret agent would have to train in order to accomplish the mission before him, we too must be trained and equipped for this mission. As the people of God, we are to consistently turn to His word and be reliant upon His Spirit to lead us as we attempt to bring His message of salvation to the world. Though this mission can be difficult, and could cost us friends, family members, jobs, and even our lives (depending on where you reside), it is totally worth it. This is an eternally important mission that Christ has given to us.

Discussion Questions
Read Matthew 28:16-20
Reflect on these verses:

These questions are meant to generate conversations with your students.
  1. What is the Great Commission? What does this mean for us as believers, and how is this played out practically in our world today? 
  2. Jesus appears to His disciples after His resurrection. They had seen Him crucified and killed, yet He rose again. How does His life/death/resurrection help us to live His mission?
  3. Agents usually train for their missions. We see them train their physical bodies and they also train their minds to be sharp and prepared for the task ahead. In what ways can we train ourselves to be ready for the mission God has given us? 
  4. Jesus says that His disciples will teach others to observe all that He has commanded. What are somethings that Jesus has commanded of us, and how can we teach others about these commandments? 


As Christians, our hope and our confidence should ultimately rest in Christ Jesus.

End your time together by praying as a family. Pray specifically for the things that you’ve discussed (and confessed), pray for each other, and pray for our world as we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 crisis and the racial and political tensions currently facing our nation.

Parents:

  • Consider ways to leverage the time that you have with your students. How can you utilize this time to help them see Jesus/own the mission? 
  • In what ways can you love/serve your neighbors? Think of some practical (and safe!) ways that you and your student(s) can be the hands and feet of Jesus at this time. 

__________________________________________________________________________________

Adult Notes


August 30th SERMON GUIDES

Kid City Notes

Lesson overview:
Bible passage: Genesis 12, 17 & 21
Story point: God promised Abraham that he would has as many children as there are stars in the sky, and Abraham believed Him, but it would take over 20 years! Abraham had to learn to be patient, and trust that God’s timing was best.
Key passage: Genesis 15:6 “And he believed the Lord, and he counted it to him as righteousness.”

Younger Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills
Key Passage Activity:
Supplies: Paper, pen/pencil
Write the key passage: Genesis 15:6, on a piece of paper and have the kids repeat it after you. Erase one word at a time as you continue practicing it. Erase 3-5 words.
Say: Abraham’s faith and patience that God would give him a son was credited to his righteousness. It is not easy to wait but being patient honors God. Abraham didn’t always make the right choices, but after 20 years, he didn’t give up, he continued to trust and believe in God’s promises.
Bible Story Questions:
1. Who was Abraham? (He was the husband of Sarah, and the father of Isaac. When he was in his 70s God promised to give him a son that would lead to a great nation. But he and his wife were already very old when God made this promise. But he still believed in God and in God’s promises.)
2. Are you very patient? How can you be more patient? (I am not very patient, but trusting in God, and praying helps me remember to trust God and to rest in Him.)
3. Why was Abraham considered righteous for being patient? (He trusted God and obeyed him. He spent years waiting on God, because he had faith in God’s promises and knew that God would fulfill those promises. Even when it seemed impossible, he still trusted and obeyed. He did not always do the right thing, he made mistakes, but he still tried to honor God and trusted in His promise.)
Activity: The Patience Game
Supplies: Stopwatch
Have your kids sit down on the couch/floor. Tell them you are going to see who can sit on the couch/floor for 1 minute. As soon as they think 1 minute has passed, they should stand up. Whoever stands closest to 1 minute wins. If they haven’t stood up after one minute, note who was closest to 1 minute, they are the winner, not the person who sat the longest. Play several rounds.
Say: One minute seemed like a long time right? Sometimes when you are doing something really fun a minute can go so fast! But other times one minute can seem like forever, especially if you are waiting for something. Do you remember how long Abraham and Sarah waited for their son Isaac? It was about 25 years! Can you imagine waiting that long? Waiting for school to start again after just 5 months has been really hard for some of us, and I know most of us are really anxious and excited to return to school and see all our friends again. But if it isn’t our time yet, let’s thank God for giving us friends that we love, a good school where we can learn, and so many other activities we can’t wait to enjoy again. I know this time has been hard, but we at KidCity are praying for you all.
Older Kids: Bible Story Review & Bible Skills
Key Passage Activity:
Supplies: Paper, pen/pencil
Write the key passage: Genesis 15:6, on a piece of paper and have the kids repeat it after you. Erase one word at a time as you continue practicing it. Erase 5-7 words.
Say: Abraham’s faith and patience that God would give him a son was credited to his righteousness. It is not easy to wait but being patient honors God. Abraham didn’t always make the right choices, but after 20 years, he didn’t give up, he continued to trust and believe in God’s promises.
Bible Story Questions:
1. Who was Abraham? (He was the husband of Sarah, and the father of Isaac. When he was in his 70s God promised to give him a son that would lead to a great nation. But he and his wife were already very old when God made this promise. But he still believed in God and in God’s promises.)
2.  Are you very patient? How can you be more patient? (I am not very patient, but trusting in God, and praying helps me remember to trust God and to rest in Him.)
3.  What does it mean to be righteous? Why was Abraham considered righteous for being patient? (A righteous person is a person who is morally right. They do what is right by obeying God and obeying Him. Abraham trusted God and obeyed him. He spent years waiting on God, because he had faith in God’s promises and knew that God would fulfill those promises. Even when it seemed impossible, he still trusted and obeyed. He did not always do the right thing, he made mistakes, but he still tried to honor God and trusted in His promise.)
Activity: The Patience Game
Supplies: Stopwatch
Have your kids sit down on the couch/floor. Tell them you are going to see who can sit on the couch/floor for 1 minute. As soon as they think 1 minute has passed, they should stand up. Whoever stands closest to 1 minute wins. If they haven’t stood up after one minute, note who was closest to 1 minute, they are the winner, not the person who sat the longest. Play several rounds.
Say: One minute seemed like a long time right? Sometimes when you are doing something really fun a minute can go so fast! But other times one minute can seem like forever, especially if you are waiting for something. Do you remember how long Abraham and Sarah waited for their son Isaac? It was about 25 years! Can you imagine waiting that long? Waiting for school to start again after just 5 months has been really hard for some of us, and I know most of us are really anxious and excited to return to school and see all our friends again. But if it isn’t our time yet, let’s thank God for giving us friends that we love, a good school where we can learn, and so many other activities we can’t wait to enjoy again. I know this time has been hard, but we at KidCity are praying for you all.
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Gospel Student Ministry Notes
Scripture: Matthew 6:25-34
Do Not be Anxious
Intro/Overview
As human beings, we have this incredible tendency to worry about things. I think that is one of the many things that separates us from God. He is infinite and all-knowing, so the future is no mystery to Him. However, as finite, limited human beings, we are constantly obsessing and what the future holds. We often wonder what tomorrow or next month, or even next year will bring. As the people of God, those that belong to this loving, almighty, and glorious God, we can take great comfort in knowing that He cares for us, and He will provide for His own.
In Matthew 6, Jesus addresses this idea of anxiety and fear that often overwhelms us. Jesus, in no uncertain terms, tells us not to be anxious about our lives. Now, this is easier said than done. I mean, we’re in the midst of a global pandemic, we are steadily approaching an election that has divided our country, and we can’t forget all of the racial tensions that have plagued our country this year. On top of all of that, we have parents/students/families trying to figure out what to do about school. This is a really difficult time for a lot of people and there is no doubt that many of us are anxious about what is to come.
Jesus was totally aware that His disciples and those that followed Him were dealing with feelings of anxiety and fear. That had legitimate needs: food, clothing, shelter, etc. So this anxiousness that they were carrying was very real. However, Jesus calms their fears by telling them that God is the great provider. He provides for the smallest of details, for example, flowers, grass, birds of the air. So, if He makes sure they are all cared for, won’t He care for His own children in powerful and incredible ways?
Jesus says in verse 32, that our Heavenly Father knows all of your needs. So He instructs His followers to seek the kingdom of God first, rather than be so concerned about all of these other things, because your heavenly Father knows your need and He will provide these things for you. It is a great comfort to know that we belong to a God who cares.
There will be many moments over the next several days, weeks, and months to come where we feel overwhelmed by anxiety. It is in those moments that we must remember that God sees and knows exactly what we need and exactly how we are feeling. And not only does He know, but He also cares. Remember the words of our Lord Jesus “do not be anxious…your Heavenly Father knows your need.”
Discussion Questions
Read Matthew 6:25-34
Reflect on these verses
These questions are meant to generate conversations with your students.
1. There is no doubt that this is a difficult time for a lot of people, especially as students are heading back to school. What are you currently anxious about? (Name some things verbally/out loud that you are struggling with that are making you feel anxious)
2. Jesus mentions faith in verse 30. What is the correlation between faith and anxiety? Is this something that you have seen/experienced personally? What helps your faith to grow versus what shakes your faith?
3. Jesus tells us not to be anxious because our Father knows what we need. He also tells us to seek the Kingdom of God first. What does that mean? How can we seek the Kingdom of God daily?
4. This idea of worry and doubt plague us constantly. How can we overcome these feelings?
As Christians, our hope and our confidence should ultimately rest in Christ Jesus.
End your time together by praying as a family. Pray specifically for the things that you’ve discussed (and confessed), pray for each other, and pray for our world as we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 crisis and the racial and political tensions currently facing our nation.
Parents:
  • Consider ways to leverage the time that you have with your students. How can you utilize this time to help them see Jesus/own the mission?
  • In what ways can you love/serve your neighbors? Think of some practical (and safe!) ways that you and your student(s) can be the hands and feet of Jesus at this time.
    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Adults Notes
Jesus Above Every Other Name
Scripture: 1 Corinthians 1:10-19, 22-24, 2:1-5, 3:4-11, 21-4:2, 4:6b (CSB)
“Now I urge you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree in what you say, that there be no divisions among you, and that you be united with the same understanding and the same conviction.”
1 Corinthians 1:10
“For it has been reported to me about you, my brothers and sisters, by members of Chloe’s people, that there is rivalry among you. What I am saying is this: One of you says, ‘I belong to Paul,’ or ‘I belong to Apollos,’ or ‘I belong to Cephas,’ or ‘I belong to Christ.’”
1 Corinthians 1:11-12
“Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in Paul’s name?”
1 Corinthians 1:13
“For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel—not with eloquent wisdom, so that the cross of Christ will not be emptied of its effect.”
1 Corinthians: 1:17
“For the word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but it is the power of God to us who are being saved. For it is written:
I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and I will set aside the intelligence of the intelligent.”
1 Corinthians 1:18-19
“For the Jews ask for signs and the Greeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to the Jews and foolishness to the Gentiles.”
1 Corinthians 1:22-23
“Yet to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ is the power of God and the wisdom of God,”
1 Corinthians 1:24
“So that…none of you will be arrogant, favoring one person over another.”
1 Corinthians 4:6b
.
“The good news of the gospel is this: “We are more sinful and flawed in ourselves than
we ever dared believe, yet at the very same time we are more loved and accepted in
Jesus Christ than we ever dared hope.”
~ Tim Keller, The Meaning of Marriage
“When I came to you, brothers and sisters, announcing the mystery of God to you, I did not come with brilliance of speech or wisdom.”
1 Corinthians 2:1
“I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.”
1 Corinthians 2:2
“I came to you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling.”
1 Corinthians 2:3
“My speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of wisdom but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power,”
1 Corinthians 2:4
“so that your faith might not be based on human wisdom but on God’s power.”
1 Corinthians 2:5
“What then is Apollos? What is Paul? They are servants through whom you believed, and each has the role the Lord has given. I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So, then, neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth. Now he who plants and he who waters are one, and each will receive his own reward according to his own labor. For we are God’s coworkers. You are God’s field, God’s building.”
1 Corinthians 3:5-9
“According to God’s grace that was given to me, I have laid a foundation as a skilled master builder, and another builds on it. But each one is to be careful how he builds on it. For no one can lay any foundation other than what has been laid down. That foundation is Jesus Christ.”
1 Corinthians 3:10-11
“So let no one boast in human leaders, for everything is yours—whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas or the world or life or death or things present or things to come—everything is yours, and you belong to Christ, and Christ belongs to God
4 A person should think of us in this way: as servants of Christ and managers of the mysteries of God. In this regard, it is required that managers be found faithful.”
1 Corinthians 3:21-4:2