THE GOOD LIFE
In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus invites people into ways of being in the world that promise the truly good life. At the end of the sermon the crowds are amazed, but this isn’t so much because the content is new but because of the clarity, strength, and authority with which Jesus teaches. His teachings are radical, but not out of the blue. In this 8-week summer series, our habits and ways of being will be deconstructed and reformed through Jesus’ teachings and model. It will bring us back to a simple, yet challenging way to live that can only be described as The Good Life. Here is the schedule…
JUNE 7 – “SHAKES & SPLASHES” Every Christian is called by God to be an influence on the world around them. In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus used the illustrations of salt and light. Both salt and light have properties which affect things around them. Salt is used to enhance flavor, and as a preservative. Light is a symbol used to mean awareness, knowledge, and understanding. In this message we will discover there is a different life we can live – the good life – that can make a difference in the world.
JUNE 14– “THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING” There are some things you had better get right if you're going to be rightly related to God, both in this life and in the life to come. Jesus is going to answer a question which is extremely critical for life as we know it today, and that is: Is there an absolute basis for truth, for law, for morals, for what is right, and for what is wrong; and if there is—what is it? Join us as we see how the Bible relates to the good life Jesus calls us to live.
JUNE 21 – “MURDER HE WROTE” Jesus equates the consequences of anger toward others to the consequences of murder. This may seem harsh, but Jesus knows our hearts far better than we do. Human anger is the first stop on the line to murder, and to the Holy God, a step toward a sin is as bad as the sin itself. If we truly want to live the good life, we must learn how to control the emotion of anger.
JUNE 28 – “AFFAIRS OF THE HEART” An adulterous heart is a restless one. It was that way in Moses’ day, remained that way in Jesus’ day, and is still so today. Some cultures try to be subtle about this. Ours does not. Extra-marital sexual activity is so intertwined with a juggernaut entertainment industry, we generally want distraction and amusement as much as we want sex. In this message, Jesus points out the danger of sexual impurity and how it robs of the good life.
JULY 5 – “WRECKING BALL” Divorce is a departure from the purposes of God. Jesus explained that provisions for divorce in the Old Testament were an accommodation to the hardness of people’s hearts and a necessary evil. Regardless of the circumstances, divorce signifies the fatality of the marriage vow. It’s the death of the dream, the breaking of the covenant, and the ending of “what should have been.” Jesus shows us that being committed in marriage for life is important to experiencing the good life.
JULY 12 – “BUT YOU PROMISED” We are all familiar with sayings such as "A man's word is his bond," or "A handshake is as good as a contract." These sayings belong to another age. We live in a world where contracts are worth only the paper they are written on, and promises are broken with impunity. Today, a man's word means little, and a handshake is merely a handshake. In this message we learn the good life consists of making sure we do what we say we will do. As the old Gaelic proverb says: There is no greater fraud than a promise not kept.
JULY 19 – “THE SECOND MILE” The Jews lived under constant Roman oppression. One demand by a Roman soldier or citizen would require a Jewish person to carry their burden for a mile. It was an inconvenient and unjust law. Israel lived in anticipation of the coming of Messiah. One who would deliver them from such tyranny! Now, here Jesus stood…telling them they should carry their Roman neighbors pack for a second mile?!? Surely this could not be what He meant. But it was. In this concept lies the secret to true joy and living a good life.
JULY 26 – “BEHIND ENEMY LINES” Hating an enemy is what comes natural. We need supernatural help. If we try and love our enemies apart from the help of God it will difficult if not impossible. Loving your enemy does not mean you have to add them to your Christmas list, or make them your best friend. It doesn’t mean you excuse their actions. In this final message we learn from Jesus that the good life is about loving those who are unlovable.