We’d Rather Sit on the Bench?

Ken has been very clearly sharing each week about the reality of community life in the church, which causes us to think about our current relationship with God. Perhaps his biblical challenges have forced you to admit that we as a church have often been simply a casual fan of Jesus, rather than a committed follower of Jesus.

We believe just enough to know that heaven is the place we want to go after this life, but not enough to make actual changes in our lives that will allow God to use us and therefore make an eternal impact on his kingdom.

We believe the mission and purpose of God is to call out pastors, teachers, and missionaries to build his kingdom, but we settle for sitting on the bench, or sidelines, never really wanting to get into the game.

  • We’re glad we “made the team” by saying YES to Jesus at some point in the past.
  • We’re wearing the team uniform so others know we are on God’s team, but we really don’t make an impact on the team’s success.
  • We know there’s a playbook we have been given, but admit we have not read it enough to know the team strategy.
  • We regularly show up at practice, but make little preparation for the actual game.
  • We’re content to just sit here on the bench and leave reading the playbook and running the plays to the starting team.

We think to ourselves…

  • “I don’t expect to get in the game so I’m just fine sitting here on the bench, dressed out, and wearing my team’s colors.”
  • “I don’t really like practice all that much: the coach is always telling us what to do and how to do it.”
  • “I don’t like that the coach makes the whole team run, shoot, get in shape, hone our skills, and get prepared for the games.”
  • “I admit that don’t really DO all that stuff. I prefer just sitting over here on my team bench, next to this little orange water cooler filled with Gatorade.”

So, you may be asking, “Why are you even on this team?”

“Well, it’s because I like the crowd cheering for me and my team, knowing I just might make it to the Final Four and the Championship Game because of all the dedication, commitment, skills, and efforts of those five starters who get all the playing time.”

Wow, I didn’t think I would take this illustration so far, but the more I thought about it, how often is this true in the church?

  • My faith is all about ME.
  • My faith is personal.
  • My church is also about ME, and my preferences.
  • My church is here, people know how to find us.
  • My spiritual growth is optional.
  • Finding my place of service is optional.

But the Bible begs to differ. Faith is not something that we just have or live out personally or in isolation. There is way too much evidence in Scripture that the Christian faith is meant to be carried out in the context of community.

We often seek God’s will in our own lives but fail to realize that God has a will for HIS church.

  • The church is the gathered group of Jesus followers.
  • The church is people, those who have confessed allegiance to the One who bought them and saved them, not just to sit and soak, but to serve.
  • The church is gifted to do exactly what the Lord desires for each of us to do and accomplish.

I’m not talking about just volunteering, although that is expected when we have a corporate mentality of Christianity. I’m talking about truly understanding what the church is all about.

  • What does God expect of the church?
  • What is God’s vision that he has shown to pastor Ken?
  • What does a disciple of Jesus look like?
  • Why do we gather in worship?
  • What is the Great Commission (Acts 1:8) and how am I supposed to be a part of it?
  • What are my spiritual gifts and where can I exercise or use them?

Jesus mentioned that there are two great commandments: to love God, and then to love others (Matthew 28:18-20, Matthew 22:36-40). The whole law can be summed up in these two commands, but the Bible also has a lot to say about HOW we live as believers and followers and disciples of Jesus.

This is why Ken has spent so much time casting vision for King’s Grant, defining who we are as a church, helping us to discover our spiritual gifts, and how to exercise and employ the gifts of grace that God has so thoughtfully supplied.

Let God have his way for this church (Philippians 1:6). Stop being content to sit on the bench.

[ This is re-posted from www.scottchafee.com ]

Missions Sunday March 24

March 24 is our special emphasis on MISSIONS, specifically on our Guatemala Partnership with Catalyst Resources International. Founders and leaders, Fontaine and Paula Greene, will be with us for the whole weekend!

Check the bulletin and Weekly Communique for the full schedule of activities.

On Missions Sunday March 24, we are dedicating the entire Sunday School hour for all adults to gather in the sanctuary for a special time with the Greenes who will give us the latest update on the partnership and what our support and participation is doing in Guatemala.

So, please communicate with your class about meeting in the sanctuary at 9:45 next Sun day March 24. Fontaine will preach at 8:30 and 11:00 that day.

From Pursue to Purpose

From Pursue to Purpose
Philippians 3:7-14

Five Reasons to Run Passionately After Jesus

If we pursue God and the things of God, without a passion for the heart of Christ, it is in vain.

In 1933, CS Lewis, encouraging a friend to stay on the path. The dog story, they walk and meet a post, and the dog goes one side, the owner on the other. One must surrender to the pull of his master. We cannot go forward unless we yield to Jesus.

Join his heart and pursue Jesus. Paul was in pursuit of Christ, evidenced by Philippians 3.

TO KNOW HIM. Philippians 3:7-8. Forsaking all the stuff we normally brag about. 3:5-6 was Paul’s resume, yet he desired to gain only Christ. Rubbish, refuse, worse than table scraps, dung, to gain Christ. A financial term, gains and losses. Jesus is called Lord before the cross and then after the cross, but Lord is different after the resurrection. He was no less than GOD. In Acts, over and over Jesus is called LORD.

TO TESTIFY TO OUR OWN SALVATION IN JESUS CHRIST. Philippians 9-11. Your heart for Christ makes you either a good or bad testimony for Christ. 1) Righteous is not from the law or works for Christ, but by faith in Christ. 2) You are declared righteous only in one way, by faith in Jesus. 3) Saving faith leading to justification is a living, ongoing faith, not a onetime event. Followers must have an ongoing preference for Jesus.

The same Spirit that raised Jesus is in you! Power, pursue, purpose.

WE ARE SO IMPERFECT. Philippians 3:12. We are not yet fully mature. Paul strives to grasp, or take hold of Jesus, after all Jesus has taken hold of him. He was not perfect. God was still working on Paul, Romans 7:19-20. He has not yet arrived! Paul gives all credit for salvation to Jesus. Paul has a holy dissatisfaction for where he is. Chase after Christ since we are so imperfect.

BECAUSE JESUS HAS MADE US HIS OWN. Philippians 3:12. Paul is not afraid he is losing salvation, because Jesus has a hold on him. I am his own. It is not a walk down the aisle or praying a prayer. Salvation is not based on a decision for a moment, but a walk of a lifetime. A good marriage is not accomplished on the wedding day. The wedding date is not the goal. You are just getting started. Grow with and get to know them every day. Chase after your spouse.

BECAUSE HIS WORK IN US AND THROUGH US IS NOT OVER. Philippians 3:13-14. We sometimes think our sin is too large, I’ve done too much, I’m useless to the Master. Paul writes about forgetting the past and reaching forward to the future. He had a holy tension of what was and what could be. What is the one thing, the prize, the upward calling of God? It is about calling… our salvation calling has two expressions, a GENERAL calling, how we live our life every day, and a PARTICULAR calling to service, my God-given gifts, for the work he desires for me to do for his kingdom. The crown, the wreath, says, “you finished strong.” The desire of our life on earth is to please and honor Christ.

How am I positioned before God so I can do God’s work? Am I allowing God to work in and through me? Living and sharing the gospel. How can I go forward pursuing Jesus for the purpose you have in my life?

Life Group Discussion Questions:

  1. If you were to update your resume today, what recent accomplishment would you want to include?
  2. What do you feel are your most valuable skills and gifts?
  3. How do you feel when someone is better than you at something you do well?
  4. How physically fit are you?
  5. If you lived in ancient times and participated in sports, would you prefer chariot racing or spear throwing? Why?
  6. As a child, what did it feel like to get something you really wanted for a gift?
  7. When we look back at the most impactful moments in our lives, was it from something we received in terms of a physical item, or was a moment shared with friends or family? Who has a story?
  8. What sorts of things tend to draw you away from Christ?
  9. What do you usually boast about?
  10. Why do we tend to base our worth as Christians on our performance?
  11. Why should our identity and confidence be in the Lord? Why do we lose our focus?
  12. How is the Apostle Paul’s commitment to Christ an example to you?
  13. Why do people brag about “stuff” or accomplishments? What is the driving force behind this?
  14. Why do people tend to be private about religious beliefs, especially when compared to the other things they are willing to talk about?
  15. How does God’s grace compare to any other gift we have ever received? Break down the differences, and how can this discussion help us talk about grace with others?
  16. If a friend, family member, co-worker, or neighbor listed the five of the most important things in your life, where would Christ be listed? Would the list be different from different people? (ie. Coworker/neighbor versus family or friend?)
  17. If you were able to select the five most important things you wish people answered, what would be a few of those items?
  18. If someone who did not know you looked at just two things, your checkbook and your calendar, what would this tell them about you?
  19. What is the consequence of doing something that is good, but doing so for the wrong reasons?
  20. Does anyone have a story of where they did something or participated in something because of the direction from the Holy Spirit? What was the end result?
  21. What are the pitfalls of putting faith in people as supposed to Christ?
  22. The day we are saved is just the starting gate, so, what are some important steps in our walk that you can share and discuss?
  23. What are some events or experiences that have been important to you and stand out in your walk with Christ?
  24. What are the dangers of not only thinking my sin is too large, but also the reverse, thinking my sin is small and no big deal?
  25. What kind of race are you running for Christ?
  26. What prize do you seek? What prize are we going to get?
  27. What kind of opposition do you face in your struggle to live as a Christian?
  28. How can you imitate Paul’s life and example? What needs to change in your life to live that way?
  29. Who do you look at as an example of someone sold out for Jesus?
  30. What do you need to start counting as rubbish for the sake of Christ?
  31. When you face struggles this week, how can you remember to rejoice rather than complain?
  32. What spiritual workout or training this week will help you run your Christian marathon?
  33. In what way can you renew your commitment to press on toward the goal of being like Christ?

5 Things to Say to God

Pursue: Are You Daily Pursuing God?
5 Things to Say to God
(Matthew 6:33, 1 Peter 1:15, Psalm 25:4-5, Romans 12:2, Ephesians 3:21)

Icebreaker Question: The sermon was on 5 things to say to God. The start of the sermon mentioned having a “Dear God” moment and what you would say and that kids often have an easier time with this than adults. Does anyone have any stories about when their kids first started praying? What did you kids pray for?

Matthew 6:33

33 But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

  • “God, I care about your Kingdom more than my own success.

Life Group Questions:

  1. What are the differences between a secular view of success and what God desires for us?
  2. Matthew 6:30-32 speaks to worrying about food, clothing, or other necessities and that God already knows you need these things and will provide them. Thus, is it a waste of time perhaps to focus on your own success over service in God’s Kingdom?
  3. What are the dangers of taking your eyes off the Kingdom first?
  4. How does obedience redefine an understanding of success or failure? (you can never fail when being obedient to God, and you never have to worry about success either)
  5. Who you are spiritually ranks higher than who you are physically, what are ways to strengthen this view?
  6. What creates worry in our lives, and how can we reduce the influence of worry?
  7. Most people that strive for personal success are thinking of the legacy they will leave on earth. What type of legacy should a Christian want to leave? 
  8. Is there a correlation between happiness, contentedness, and success or are they incompatible? What is the difference in how secular society views this versus a Christian one?
  9. Forbes magazine had an article that included research by Dr David Linden (Johns Hopkins’ School of Medicine) that shows the same traits that make a good CEO – risk taking, strong drive for success, obsession, dedication, novelty-seeking- are precisely what make a good addict. The Forbes article went on to state that authority may be linked to depression, and there is some evidence that CEO’s tend to experience depression at double the rate of normal people.
    1. What are some conclusions we can draw from this about the human idea of success?
    2. What does this show about the dangers of worldly desires?
    3. How does this demonstrate a void in fallen man that needs to be filled?

 1 Peter 1:15

15 but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior;

  • “God, I choose to measure my actions and attitude by Your holiness and not by the standards of others.

Life Group Questions:

  1. Why do we sometimes compare ourselves to others as supposed to the holiness of God? What are the pitfalls of spending time comparing yourself to others around you?
  2. Beware of the comparison trap. Why do we sometimes compare ourselves to others, what is the motivation behind this? (competitive spirit, jealousy, judgement, false idol, create false sense of security etc…)
  3. There is a term “the lie of the middle”. The theory means when looking at the community around you, there will typically be some further ahead and also some further behind. This creates the assumption that its ok not to be the best, because at least you are not the worst.
    1. How can this mindset lead one to complacency or inactivity?
    2. How does a focus on God prevent us from being trapped by the “lie of the middle”?
    3. The lie of the middle was applied to salvation by author Bill Fay. Bill stated that many people who are not saved will assume they will go to heaven because they are “good” people in that they might not be as good as some, but are much better than plenty of others. How should a Christian respond?
  4. What speaks louder, actions or words? How does this relate to our behavior? Do your non-Christian friends pay attention to your actions?

Psalm 25:4-5

Make me know Your ways, O Lord;
Teach me Your paths.

Lead me in Your truth and teach me,
For You are the God of my salvation;
For You I wait all the day.

  • God, I consider myself accountable to Your truth by studying Your Word and listening to You.

Life Group Questions:

  1. This point relates to reading the Bible and listening to the Holy Spirit for guidance.
    1. What are the methods and practices you use for reading the Bible? (do you read concurrently, do you read topically, do you read casually, do you read with the intent to take notes, do you use daily devotionals, no one answer will apply to all, but describe how you stay in the Word)
    2. Has the Holy Spirit ever lead you to a particular passage of Scripture when you needed it?
    3. Has personal revelation ever taught you something and then later you read the supreme revelation in the Bible that supports that lesson?
  2. What is your favorite book or books in the Bible? What book has been most inspirational to you in your life?
  3. If you met someone who was not saved and they asked what are three or four books of the Bible you would recommend for them to read first, what would you answer?
  4. How much of an issue is noise in our current culture? Would you say this is the “noisiest” time so far for humanity?
  5. Do you dedicate time in your life to simply block out noise and reflect on things with God? How or by what methods do you create quit time to spend one on one with God?

Romans 12:2

2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.

  • God, I seek to know Your will; I seek to know what you desire to accomplish in my life at this moment.

Life Group Questions:

  1. God’s will is never lost.
    1. How can this concept provide peace?
    2. How can this concept provide hope?
    3. Does anyone have a story where God closed doors or opened doors in their lives?
  2. What is the necessary role of Scripture in understanding God’s will?
  3. What is your favorite story in the Bible of where God used a person to further His will?
  4. Ephesians 2:8-10 states “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9 not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.”
    1. How does seeking God’s will create a greater sense of humility?
    2. What is the most dangerous human emotion? Where does pride rank on that list?
    3. 1 Corinthians 1:31 states “Let him who boasts, boast in the Lord.” This is very different than the version of boasting stated in Ephesians 2:9. How does popular culture promote the version of boasting found in Ephesians 2:9? What are the results of this promotion in society?
  5. What are some of the dangers in our world today that make things more difficult for Christians? What are some of the ways the world beckons us to conform to it?
  6. How should we weigh praying for God’s will versus praying for our own desires?

Ephesians 3:21

21 to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.

  • God, I choose to focus on Your glory more than any other concern in my life.”

Life Group Questions:

  1. We often face concerns, but how does living for God’s glory simplify things in our life?
  2. Concern is not necessarily a negative response, except when it leads to excessive worry.
    1. How can a focus on God prevent the negative aspects of concern?
    2. What is the correlation between worry and trust? Does worry basically come down to a lack of trust?
  3. What are ways we can show trust in God?
  4. When a person seeks and attains glory in their life for selfish reasons, what are the typical results?
  5. What does popular culture glorify in our society?

The One Thing

Pursue: The Intensity of our Faith – The One Thing
Psalm 27:4, John 6:68

One Thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: That I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, To gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek Him in His temple. (Psalm 27:4)

Demonstrated through the presence of God.

  1. The Christian Faith centers on the presence of God.
  2. The presence of God centers on our fellowship with Him.
  3. Fellowship with God centers upon living at peace with God.

Life Group Questions:

  1. As Christians we have fellowship with God, and profess Jesus as Lord and Savior. Does the verbal confidence of our lives match the reality of our walk?
  2. 20% of Americans when asked what is their one thing or passion responded with the answer of religious faith.
    1. Are you surprised at the tally of 20%? Does it seem lower or higher than you expected?
    2. What are things that compete in your life with the “one thing” that matters?
    3. What are ways that our actions represent our passion? How can we use our actions to share Christ? What are examples of when we have done so?
  3. Fellowship represents an association, especially one with shared interests. What are some important ways that our interests are to overlap with God’s interests? What does it look like to live with God’s interests at the heart of our motivation?
  4. How do you react as a Christian knowing that you constantly have the presence of the Holy Spirit? How is this unique among other religions?
  5. Life can present difficulties and hardships, but how can understanding the eternal destination of Christians change the lens on how we view difficult times and provide a sense of peace?
  6. King David felt comfort by the presence of God, and even rejoiced when being disciplined by God. What are ways God’s presence has been comforting to you in your life?
  7. Peace can be defined as tranquility or freedom from disturbance. How can a Christian have peace even during turbulent times? How would this be different for someone with a secular view?

Simon Peter answered him, “Lord to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. (John 6:68)

Demonstrated through the person of Jesus Christ.

  1. There is one decision that matters over all others.
  2. There is one source for truth and life.
  3. There is one who is above all others.

Life Group Questions:

  1. Peter makes a valid point, aside from Jesus, to whom shall we go? This is the quintessential question in life, how to respond to Jesus.
    1. Why is having the freedom of choice so important in the response to Jesus?
    2. Discuss the critical element of faith in Christianity. Why did God choose to utilize faith over a powerful and obvious display of proof?
    3. Why are more and more Christians falling victim to the idea that there are other ways to God aside from through the Son?
    4. The Hebrew word for holy means to be “set apart”. How should our lifestyle reflect being holy?
  2. What is your favorite scripture or biblical story relating to Jesus? 
  3. Ken mentioned how Amazon tallied the most popular verses from Scripture and that Philippians 4:6 topped the list.

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

If someone were to look at your personal Bible, what would your favorite verse or verses be and why?

  1. When people weighed in during the 1st Century about what Christianity looked like from afar, they noticed a sense of power given to the lives of Christians. 
    1. If this was how accounts viewed 1st century Christianity, how do you think Christianity would be viewed today?
    2. How is life similar or different today as supposed to early Christianity?
    3. What are ways people can see the power of Christ in our lives today as Christians? Describe what you think was noticeable for those looking at the 1st century Christians when they stated this?
  2. Jesus is the head of the Church. How is Jesus an excellent portrayal of a leader? How does the example of Jesus’ leadership differ from other secular views of leadership?
  3. Jesus is exalted above all else, yet sacrificed on the cross for us, how is this greatest demonstration possible of God’s love for each and every one of us?
  4. If someone asks you about what being a Christian is all about, how would you answer them?

One in a Million

Every week millions of believers fill the pews of the church and hear about the greatness and power of God. They are told that they can experience it, yet few ever do. If you hunger to experience His power, hear His voice, and live in the abundance promised to you, then this book is for you.

Books: $13
Start: 3/19/19 ——- End: 5/7/19

Times: 9:15 11:30 a.m
Night: 6:45 to 8:45 p.m.

Celebration of New Life

Worship with us on Wednesday March 20, the first day of spring, to celebrate new life. People are hurting from losses, like the death of a loved one, the loss of a marriage or job, adult children on the wrong path, maybe even grief over the current political climate in the commonwealth or country.

Let’s come together as a community of faith to bear one another’s burdens and move from hurting to hope, from darkness to light.

This will be a time for the body to come together and celebrate new life, whether you are a member of our church or a member of our community. Join us on March 20, 6 pm, in the sanctuary.

Disaster Relief Project – April 2019

Interested? Contact Ray Kirby, Donald Downs, or Sheridan Barber.

Here are the Mission Trip Details:

Last September (2018) Hurricane Florence devastated many communities in the Carolinas; the subsequent flooding brought even more damage.  Many agencies, government and non-profit, have been working in these hard-hit communities, and the task of mucking out and tearing down has started. Rebuilding homes, even communities, will be ongoing for several years.

Faith Works Coalition (FWC) will form a Mission Group to travel to Eastern North Carolina from April 29th to May 3rd, 2019 (Monday to Friday).  FWC is an all-volunteer organization supported by church-based outreach groups, youth & adult groups, military, businesses and individuals.  We are registered in Virginia as a 501(c)3 organization.  We have no paid employees.  Our funding comes mainly from donations.  We are very proud to report that we exceed all non-profit benchmarks by directing at least 97% of every dollar donated to us for supplies and building materials to complete our projects.  Our two most urgent needs are more volunteers willing to work with our Board of Directors and donations-both monetary or materials and services.

We will be working under the coordination of the Baptist Disaster Relief organization, which has a well-organized presence there and knows how we can be of the most help. Our general ministry will be rebuilding homes.

Our group will form a driving caravan, some with trucks carrying tools. We will be staying in local churches during this week of rebuilding. FWC has experienced Team Leaders who will supervise small teams and be assigned where we can be most useful.

Please consider joining in this effort.  Anyone can be of help; no construction experience is necessary; willing hands and a willing heart to serve the Lord are all that is needed.

We are publishing this notice so interested folks can set aside this week (or part of it; our work sites will be a few hour’s drive from here).  Details of the trip will be published later.

Pursue God Through a Desire for Growth

Pursuing God Through a Desire for Growth
2 Peter 3:17-18

Peter references the Day of the Lord, knowing that he will return, so be ready. It is a certainty. To counter false teachers who assume the permanence of all things as they are. Focusing on the temporal. It promoted a false freedom from moral restraint. They had Jesus to promote their own agenda. Guard and grow! Healthy progression of who you are in Christ. Evil in the world necessitates that we grow in our faith.

First, there are false beliefs all around us that can challenge our spiritual growth.  

You have known this beforehand, forewarned. Warning of 2 Peter 3:15. This is not a new heresy, but it was watered down truth. Isaiah 57:14, remove the stumbling block from my people. Barna and opposing worldviews that have been enticing the church today. Secularism (this material world is all that there is), postmodernism (truth is relative to each person, no universal objective truth), new spirituality (being a spiritual person but not necessarily believing in God), … Christians have embraced these false doctrines. Let no one deceive you.

Second, there exist within every follower of Jesus the need for spiritual growth.

Growth is vital to our survival. Good people are being carried away by deception. They are falling from their secure place. Steadfastness, referring to their foundation, losing their footing on the foundation of Christ. They doubt or ignore the truth. Skepticism and questions arise. Warning – don’t take his grace for granted. Why is every believer so vulnerable? God’s Word is foundational, when we are not in it, we can easily be deceived. The enemy will distract us from, “thus says the Lord.” He will attack my mind and my emotions. This is how he shakes your foundation. Adam and Eve listened to the enemy and stopped believing God. Colossians 2:8, don’t be taken captive by empty philosophies, human tradition, and the oppression of the powers of darkness. John 8:44 tells us the enemy is the father of all lies. We believe something and our emotions get all stirred up. 2 Corinthians 10:5, take every thought captive. The attacks can be personal, (we doubt who we are in Christ). They can be theological (bringing lies to us, the Bible is outdated teaching, there are many ways to God, there are some sins that cannot be forgiven, your lifestyle is ok, and perhaps the worst, that Satan is not real). They can be subtle, (with enough effort you can keep the law, with enough sin you can undo the gospel).

Third, the grace and knowledge of Jesus represents the true measure of one’s spiritual growth.

Meaning, we must know what he did and have deep appreciation for what he did for us. Transformation through the love of Jesus. Grace is infinite. We can’t add or subtract from his grace, yet we are to desire more of his grace. He uses his truth, which is the pure milk of his Word, (1 Peter 2:2). We must increase our knowledge of Jesus, keep growing, exercise due diligence.

You should be where right now? What is holding you back? Paul’s desire was to know more of Christ, forget what is behind, and what does it mean to gain Christ? Desire him like never before. There is no magical neutral. Is it time to return to our spiritual mooring?

Life Group Questions:

  1. When you were a kid, what was something that you wanted more than anything?
  2. When you first came to faith in Jesus, what was the desire of your heart that convinced you to start following Christ?
  3. Ken talked about the Day of the Lord. What is it about this teaching that would motivate Christians to become more Christlike?
  4. In our telecommunications society, sometimes we encounter a watered-down gospel. When was the last time you realized that someone was promoting an inaccurate gospel and what did you do about it?
  5. In what ways have you encountered secularism (this material world is all that there is), postmodernism (there is no objective truth, and all expressions of truth are relative), or the new spirituality (people can be “spiritual people” without embracing the one living God)? How did you recognize the false teaching? How have you kept others from falling into this trap?
  6. When the Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses knock on your door with their false teaching, why are so many Christians persuaded to leave what they have been taught in church for the false beliefs that claim “another testament of Jesus Christ” or that Jesus was only “a” god rather than the one and only living God, second person of the trinity?
  7. How do we combat teaching that says, “There is no such thing as sin, and therefore no need for a savior”?
  8. When was a time in your life when you lost your footing on the secure foundation of Christ? What caused you to question or doubt your beliefs?
  9. In what ways have you ever taken the grace of God for granted?
  10. What are some lies of the enemy that you have heard or tend to toss around in your mind?
  11. The point of Ken’s message was to pursue God through a DESIRE for growth. Do you have this desire? Has there been a time in your life where the desire for growth was greater than it is now?
  12. What do you think about Ken’s 18th century Dutch theologian and his reasons that we don’t grow in faith? … We presume on the grace of God, (he’ll forgive me), we doubt our conversion, we focused on the past rather than the future, we are discouraged at our lack of progress, we are conformed to our culture rather than Christ, we are lazy (influenced by our western culture). Which speaks the loudest to you?