Discussion-based Lessons

Discussion-based lessons have groups talking and changing. We are changed more by what we say than what we hear. "Instead SPEAKING the truth (not just hearing the truth) we will grow." Ephesians 4.15 https://www.youtube.com/embed/lduldVUA8-4

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Have you found spiritual rest?

I FIND NO REST IN RELIGION. PEOPLE TALK ABOUT CHURCH AND SPIRITUALITY AS IF THEY ARE AN OASIS. IN MY LIFE, CHURCH HAS BEEN A DESERT. You may be confusing Christianity with legalism. Legalism is joyless because legalism is endless. There is always another class to...

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Conviction of Condemnation?

But as you’re driving, what do you see every few miles along the way? Exit ramps. David had lots of them. First, David found out that the woman was married. He didn’t take that exit; instead, he accelerated right past it. A little while later, he found himself way off...

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Greear: we are under obligation

In Romans 1:14 Paul uses a strange word to encapsulate his life and calling, one with enormous implications for both church leaders and members alike. “I am under obligation,” Paul says, to everyone who has not yet heard the gospel (see ESV). Many translations render...

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A simple life

A fifth characteristic of radical disciples, I suggest, is simplicity, especially in relation to the whole question of money and possessions. We postponed from Chapter 1 the challenge of materialism. In March 1980 an International Consultation on Simple Lifestyle took...

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7 Common Mistakes in Church Websites

Okay, if the church website is truly the front door of the church, how do we make the front door the most accessible? Over the past few years, my team and I have looked at hundreds of church websites. We found several recurring and common mistakes, particularly from a...

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The Front Door We Often Forget

What led you to visit our church? The question began as an innocent conversation starter. I ask guests questions about themselves and their families. I do my best to get to know them, and to make the conversation about them. But, at some point, my curiosity gets the...

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Greear: How to do you measure success?

In this book I want to press you to consider — whether you are a church leader or an “ordinary” Christian trying to figure out the best way to use your life — one, primary question: If you looked at every one of your blessings as “kingdom seeds,” how many of them are...

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What is legalism?

Legalism is the opposite heresy of antinomianism. Whereas antinomianism denies the significance of law, legalism exalts law above grace. The legalists of Jesus’ day were the Pharisees, and Jesus reserved His strongest criticism for them. The fundamental distortion of...

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Greear: Multiplication beats out addition every time

The second reason that churches that care about the Great Commission will devote themselves to sending is a mathematical one. Perhaps you can remember this math conundrum from middle school: If you have a choice between receiving $10,000 a day for 30 days, or getting...

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Growth without depth

When I was travelling in the 1990s in the interests of the Langham Partnership International, I would often ask an audience how they would summarize the Christian scene in the world today. I would receive a variety of answers. But when invited to give my own answer to...

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Greear: Growth involves risk

J.D. Greear wrote: Farmers in Oklahoma during the late 1930s faced an excruciating choice. Throughout the 1920s, rain had been plentiful and the harvests abundant, and many city workers had left their factory jobs in the Northeast for a chance of a fortune in the...

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How God leads

How often we assume that God is revealing His will to us through the circumstances around us, even when those circumstances aren’t pointing us toward a healthy or godly decision. When trying to discern God’s will, we often value an open door more than we value truth....

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Why church guests return

To be fair, in our study of first-time church guests, we heard from a number of them who had really pleasant experiences, and decided to return. Let’s look at the top ten responses from the perspective of the happy guest. Some of them are just the opposite of the ten...

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Why church guests don’t return

Most church members have forgotten what it’s like to be a first-time guest. They now have established relationships in the church. They love their church. Their biases tell them their church is great. But many church members and leaders are wrong. When we asked...

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Perspective

Then God gives us His perspective: “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart” (1 Sam. 16:7). God doesn’t look at...

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What is Christlikeness?

We conclude now with three practical consequences of the basis and examples for Christlikeness that we have considered. Christlikeness and the mystery of suffering Of course suffering is a huge subject in itself, and there are many ways in which Christians try to...

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No peanut butter allowed

Several months ago I was conversing with a man I greatly admire. He is a Christian leader in a position that carries with it heavy and extensive responsibility. He said he was grieved on behalf of a missionary family he and his wife had known for years. The legalism...

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A group is not (just) a group

https://youtu.be/H8PdaugF7dA Small group leaders need to move beyond being teachers who dispense information to passive listeners to being facilitators who encourage the exchange of dialogue and discussion among all group members (see figure 5.2). It is important to...

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Is your church friendly, really?

Is your church a friendly church? The stories are true. Only the names have been changed. Here are two doses of reality, and the first one is positive. Jane is a stylist. She cuts hair. On this particular day, she cut my hair. I often say I get my hairs cut rather...

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The Crucible

Mr. Gore, the chemistry teacher, was my favorite teacher in high school. Maybe it was because of his fiendish laugh, or perhaps his habit of booby-trapping the classroom floor with a substance that would create little explosions whenever a late student walked into the...

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The Radical Disciple

The first characteristic of the radical disciple which I bring before you I will call ‘non-conformity’. Let me explain why. The church has a double responsibility in relation to the world around us. On the one hand we are to live, serve and witness in the world. On...

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Lifeway Lessons

Lifeway is the world's #1 producer of Bible Study literature. Someone told me they have their own zip code and that they are the #2 customer of the U.S. Post office--behind the U.S. Government. You don't get to that size without providing Bible lessons that meet...

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Pursuit of Holiness

From the Foreword: Jerry Bridges has given the world one of the most incisive, appealing, and conscience-stirring treatises on scriptural holiness ever written. Without doubt, the Lord has enabled His servant to prepare a volume that will have a...

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Knowing God

13 ready-to-use Bible Lessons on Knowing God. Each Bible lesson consists of 20 or so ready-to-use questions that get groups talking. These questions make small group Bible study a joy. If you can read 20 questions, you can lead a Bible Study.  Answers are...

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Kerry Shook on multi-sensory preaching

Kerry Shook. Kerry Shook is an imaginative and unpredictable preacher. Beginning with eight people, he now sees 15,000 people attend Fellowship of the Woodlands on weekends, and some pack an extra pair of shoes. Several years ago, Shook learned from area shelters that...

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The power of social proof

We are profoundly influenced by the people around us. Don't believe it? Check out this video. What are the implications? Write your comments below. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o8BkzvP19v4

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Multi-sensory preaching and church growth

There is a mosaic of factors that have contributed to the numerical and spiritual growth at Christ Fellowship. I am convinced that the multisensory teaching style of the pastor-teachers is one of those factors. Let me give a little history. I became senior pastor of...

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