Good News, Great Joy, All People

For those who call themselves “Followers of Christ,” it’s easy to forget that in the time of Jesus, people would physically follow Christ. We now refer to these people as disciples. In Luke chapter 5, Jesus first calls Simon, then later in the chapter, He calls Levi to be a follower of Christ. But an interesting thing happens: Levi invites Jesus to a meal with tax collectors and sinners. What Jesus does in that moment is both controversial and beautiful. The example that Jesus leaves for us in this small section of scripture is a powerful reminder that Jesus is a friend of sinners and calls us to be in search of those who are needing repentance. Join us as together we explore what it means to be both a follower of Jesus and a friend of sinners.

This week we will be looking at a situation of a man who knew Jesus could help him, but asked if Jesus was willing to. One of the great passages of Scripture, we see that Jesus is a Lord who is not only able to heal but is also willing to meet us where we are.

This week we will look at the calling of the first disciples of Jesus Christ- Peter, Andrew, James and John. In this new year, there is a lot for us to learn from this passage- what we will see is that Our Lord is not only the God of the Word, but He is also the God of everything else. One of the biggest mistakes we make is compartmentalizing our faith. When we do this, we miss out on the way in which Jesus can speak to us and through us throughout the week.

As we start off 2023, I cannot think of a better text to look at then the one before us--the temptation of Christ. While there is much to see from this, this text gives highlights the power of the Spirit-Filled life. What does it mean to be filled with the Spirit? What are the benefits? This text shows us that Jesus got through what He got through because of the Spirit's presence in His life. I look forward to our time together. I encourage you to begin praying that the Holy Spirit would give light to our eyes and heart that we may see and believe what God has for us in His word.

This Sunday as we celebrate Christmas and as Christians all over the world celebrate the birth of Christ, we will take intentional time to look at Luke’s account of Christ’s birth. But what is often seen as a Christmas story actually has deeper implications. Jesus Christ came to this Earth to seek and save the lost (Luke 19:10) and because of this, God chooses very simple and humble means for Christ to be born. Together, we will explore three areas where God was not concerned about status or position when choosing where and how Jesus was born. We will explore what that means for us and how it impacts our approach to a loving God that sent his Son to this Earth to be born.

This week, we got a glimpse of Jesus at age 12. This is the only recording we have of our Lord as a pre-teen, and yet, despite his youth, Jesus displays a remarkable understanding of who he was, what he was to be doing, and how best to help others. It all started with making a decision--to put His Father first. In our life, we are faced with choices every single day... sometimes it is hard to know the best thing when faced with two good things. Looking at Jesus in this section helped us experience the practical and powerful effect of putting our Father first... It really is the key to helping ourselves and others.

This week we looked at the narrative of Jesus being dedicated in the temple. A familiar passage to some, yet, with a question we must all revisit: How do we receive Christ well? In this passage, we looked at two ways in which Jesus was received and this should give us a clue of how to live a life that cherishes Christ.

This coming week we heard about someone who has been greatly touched by God. We all have a time where we felt God saw us and did a great work. When that often happens, it’s not uncommon for it to end in a song. This week’s passage was no exception. It contains a beautiful song from someone who has experienced what it’s like to be touched by God.

This week we started the gospel of Luke. We are calling the series Good News, Great Joy, All People! From now until easter, we will be going through this exciting Gospel and following the life of Jesus Christ. I look forward to us studying together.