Thanksgiving 2017: "How Do We Say Thanks?"

Randy Christian

With the budget being discussed and voted on in a few weeks, the holidays upon us and the new year around the corner, we need to understand the scriptural expression of gratitude in worship—tithing and offering to God. 

Thanksgiving 2017 - How Do We Say Thanks? study guide

 

 

Escape: "Two Judges"

Randy Christian

Jonah knew God was a just and compassionate judge—and he didn’t like it.  His response was to give God some instruction—let him know what a real judge would say in response to Nineveh.  By doing this, he not only put himself in the place of judgment over Nineveh—he set himself up to judge God Himself.  But his judgment and God’s judgment had a very different basis.

ESCAPE - Two Judges study guide

Escape: "Change"

Randy Christian

Change is often difficult for people.  It is almost impossible for an entire kingdom.  But because of Jonah’s prophecy against the Assyrian capital, Nineveh repented!  Real repentance brings change, and God can see the change both in our behavior and in our hearts.  God’s response to this repentance is predictable—and comforting.
 

ESCAPE - Change study guide

Escape: "Jonah's Prayer"

Randy Christian

We pray at prearranged times.  We pray spontaneously.  But rarely do we pray when we are in the very act of rebellion against God.  Jonah did—and it was a good thing!  By turning to God and getting rid of any pretense, he was able to see God working in ways that were good.  God’s response was to set him back on the right track—albeit temporarily.

ESCAPE - Jonah's Prayer study guide

Escape: "Betrayal"

Randy Christian

Betrayal is a strong word, and it evokes strong emotion in the person who feels betrayed.  Jonah felt betrayed by God—and by God’s very nature.  Yet it was Jonah who betrayed God.  Like Jonah we tend to betray God and then try to lay the blame on God Himself.  But like Jonah, God doesn’t respond in kind to our betrayal.

ESCAPE - Betrayal study guide

Escape: "The Mission"

Edmund Brooks

Many of us have heard the tales of Jonah and how her ran away from God's plan, but we often don't put ourselves into his shoes. When God calls upon us, what is our response? Yes, it is scary and hard, but it is asked by God! We, as Christ followers, an't say no to his plan. We must accept the Mission.

ESCAPE - The Mission study guide

Community: "Can We Handle This?"

Randy Christian

When a community is strong, its members are not self-centered.  Rather, they voluntarily put others—and the community as a whole—as a priority.  Jesus made it clear that service both in this community and to those in the world was essential to Christian community.

COMMUNITY - Can We Handle This? study guide

Community: "Communication"

Randy Christian

The very words “community” and “communication” tell you they are related.  Communication is the sharing of thoughts/feelings/etc. between two or more people.  For true community to exist, communication must be good.  Perhaps that's why the scripture is so full of guidance on communication.  When we are effective communicators, it not only builds community between us, it helps us to reach out to those who are not part of our community.

COMMUNITY - Communication study guide

Community: "Belonging In Community"

Randy Christian

Human beings are created to live in relationship with others.  We need to be with others—we need to know we belong with others.  But Christians don’t belong in the world—the very word translated “church” in the New Testament means “the called out”.  So who do we belong with and to?  And knowing we belong, how do we related to those who feel alienated from others in the middle of millions of people?

COMMUNITY - Belonging In Community study guide

Who Is This God?

NOCC Pastors

An Intergenerational service.  This means we will have all ages (with the exception of birth-two years old) together in the worship service so we can communicate the importance of community in the Christian body and see what God has been doing in all age groups of our congregation.

WHO IS THIS GOD? study guide

Basics of Worship

Stephen Ulangca and Randy Christian

What is worship?  When we think about worship and when we think about coming to worship our Lord, we tend to think of it as the music of the church, the singing of the church.  But is it really?  What does the word “worship” even mean?  And does it equal music?  Let us come prepared to focus on the Lord together.  Let us be able to leave all the distractions behind us, so that there’s only one thing on our minds, because it’s all about our God and not about us. 

THERE IS NO STUDY GUIDE FOR THIS SERMON

Knowing Jesus: "Know Relationships"

Randy Christian

Colossians 3:18-4:1
If we are to do everything in Jesus’ name, what does that look like in the most important situations in life—in our families, or our life’s work?  Truly Knowing Jesus changes us in every way.

KNOWING JESUS - Know Relationships study guide

Knowing Jesus: "Living New"

Randy Christian

Colossians 3:1-17
When we change, it is more than just our behavior.  Our motivation changes as well.  We shift from pleasing ourselves or someone important to us, to doing what we do to be faithful to the Lord.  Decisions are made on a new basis—not just what we want, but what pleases Him.  The more we Know Him, the more our lives are lived for Him. 

KNOWING JESUS - Living New study guide

Knowing Jesus: "Living Jesus"

Randy Christian

Colossians 2:6-23
Knowing about Jesus can lead to a change in how we live.  But Knowing Jesus can change who we are.  The first can lead us to changes that may or may not be pleasing to the Lord.  But when he changes who we are, we find ourselves Living Jesus.

KNOWING JESUS - Living Jesus study guide

Knowing Jesus: "Faith That Doesn't Move"

Randy Christian

Colossians 2:1-5
Knowing about Jesus can satisfy curiosity—even make us think we have faith.  But when life’s struggles hit, such knowledge doesn’t keep our faith from shifting, causing us to fall.  But Knowing Jesus is different—it can provide strength and stability that allows us to stand, unmoving, in our faith when life’s struggles come.

KNOWING JESUS - Faith That Doesn't Move study guide

Knowing Jesus: "The Mystery"

Randy Christian

Colossians 1:24-29
Mysteries intrigue us.  They make us think.  They’re like puzzles—challenging us to understand.  But mysteries, like puzzles, need to be solved.  If they aren’t solved, we find ourselves curious, even frustrated.  But if THE Mystery isn’t solved, the consequences are far greater. 

KNOWING JESUS - The Mystery study guide