IT’S ALL ABOUT JESUS

We exist to share Jesus. 

Not religion… Not laws… Not judgement…JESUS.

Jesus makes faith simple.

Welcome Everyone
Love God
Do Not Judge
“When Jesus concluded his address, the crowd burst into applause. They had never heard teaching like this. It was apparent that he was living everything he was saying—quite a contrast to their religion teachers! This was the best teaching they had ever heard.”  Matthew 7:28-29

 

It’s “big tent” faith.

We come from different backgrounds.  We have diverse experiences.  We are on different places with our walk of faith.  But we agree to set aside our particularities for the sake of learning from Jesus. 
We come together for this one thing, the most important thing. 
 
 

Everyone is Welcome

Because Jesus welcomed everyone:

A lot of men and women of doubtful reputation were hanging around Jesus, listening intently. The religion scholars were not pleased, not at all pleased. They growled, “He takes in sinners and eats meals with them, treating them like old friends.” Luke 15:1

Levi gave a large dinner at his home for Jesus. Everybody was there, tax men and other disreputable characters as guests at the dinner. The religion scholars came to his disciples greatly offended. “What is he doing eating and drinking with crooks and ‘sinners’?” Jesus heard about it and spoke up, “Who needs a doctor to spend time with them: the healthy or the sick? I’m here inviting outsiders, not insiders—an invitation to a changed life, changed inside and out.” Luke 5: 29-32

 

He taught the value of people:

“Suppose one of you had a hundred sheep and lost one. Wouldn’t you leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the lost one until you found it? When found, you can be sure you would put it across your shoulders, rejoicing, and when you got home call in your friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Celebrate with me! I’ve found my lost sheep!’ Count on it—there’s more joy in heaven over one person’s rescued life than over ninety-nine good people in no need of rescue.” Jesus in Luke 15:4

 

He protected the obvious outcasts:

The religion scholars and leaders led in a woman who had been caught in an act of adultery. They stood her in plain sight of everyone and said, “Teacher, this woman was caught red-handed in the act of adultery. Moses, in the Law, gives orders to stone such persons to death. What do you say?” They were trying to trap him into saying something incriminating, so they could bring charges against him. Jesus bent down and wrote with his finger in the dirt. They kept at him, badgering him. He straightened up and said, “The perfect one among you, go first: Throw the stone.” Bending down again, he wrote some more in the dirt. Hearing that, they walked away, one after another, beginning with the oldest. The woman was left alone. Jesus stood up and spoke to her. “Woman, where are they? Does no one condemn you?” “No one, Master.” “Neither do I condemn you,” said Jesus. John 8

One day in one of the villages there was a man covered with a skin disease. When he saw Jesus he fell down before him in prayer and said, “If you want to, you can cleanse me.” Jesus put out his hand, touched him, and said, “I want to. Be clean.” Then and there his skin was smooth, the affliction was gone. Luke 5: 12-13

He did all this to show us the way we are supposed to behave:

And this is why God sent Jesus: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again. John 3:16-17

 

Jesus taught love.

1. Love God
Jesus said, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your passion and prayer and intelligence.’ This is the most important, the first on any list. But there is a second to set alongside it: ‘Love others as well as you love yourself.’ These two commands are pegs; everything in God’s Law and the Prophets hangs from them.” Matthew 22:37, Mark 12:29

2. Love One Another
“Let me give you a new command: Love one another. In the same way I loved you, you love one another. This is how everyone will recognize that you are my students —when they see the love you have for each other.”-Jesus in John 13:34

“Here’s another old saying that deserves a second look: ‘Eye for eye, tooth for tooth.’ Is that going to get us anywhere? Here’s what I propose: ‘Don’t hit back at all.’ If someone strikes you, stand there and take it. If someone drags you into court and sues for the shirt off your back, giftwrap your best coat and make a present of it. And if someone takes unfair advantage of you, use the occasion to practice the servant life. No more tit-for-tat stuff. Live generously.” -Jesus in Matthew 5:3

“I tell you, love your enemies. Help and give without expecting a return. You’ll never—I promise—regret it. Live out this God-created identity the way our Father lives toward us, generously and graciously, even when we’re at our worst. Our Father is kind; you be kind.” -Jesus in Luke 6:35

“You’re familiar with the old written law, ‘Love your friend,’ and its unwritten companion, ‘Hate your enemy.’ I’m challenging that. I’m telling you to love your enemies. Let them bring out the best in you, not the worst. When someone gives you a hard time, respond with the energies of prayer, for then you are working out of your true selves, your God-created selves. This is what God does. He gives his best—the sun to warm and the rain to nourish—to everyone, regardless: the good and bad, the nice and nasty. If all you do is love the lovable, do you expect a bonus? Anybody can do that. If you simply say hello to those who greet you, do you expect a medal? Any run-of-the-mill sinner does that.” -Jesus in Matthew 5:43

“I’m not interested in crowd approval. And do you know why? Because I know you and your crowds. I know that love, especially God’s love, is not on your working agenda. I came with the authority of my Father, and you either dismiss me or avoid me. If another came, acting self-important, you would welcome him with open arms. How do you expect to get anywhere with God when you spend all your time jockeying for position with each other, ranking your rivals and ignoring God?” Jesus in John 5:41

“To you who are ready for the truth, I say this: Love your enemies. Let them bring out the best in you, not the worst. When someone gives you a hard time, respond with the energies of prayer for that person. If someone slaps you in the face, stand there and take it. If someone grabs your shirt, giftwrap your best coat and make a present of it. If someone takes unfair advantage of you, use the occasion to practice the servant life. No more tit-for-tat stuff. Live generously.” Jesus in Luke 6:27

3. Love = Joy
“I’ve told you these things for a purpose: that my joy might be your joy, and your joy wholly mature. This is my command: Love one another the way I loved you. This is the very best way to love. Put your life on the line for your friends. You are my friends when you do the things I command you. I’m no longer calling you servants because servants don’t understand what their master is thinking and planning. No, I’ve named you friends because I’ve let you in on everything I’ve heard from the Father.” -Jesus in John 15:11

 

What is love?

No matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m nothing without love.

Love never gives up.
Love cares more for others than for self.
Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have.
Love doesn’t strut, Doesn’t have a swelled head, Doesn’t force itself on others, Isn’t always “me first,”
Doesn’t fly off the handle, Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others, Doesn’t revel when others grovel,
Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,
Puts up with anything, Trusts God always, Always looks for the best,
Never looks back, But keeps going to the end.
Love never dies.

1 Corinthians 13

 

God IS Love.

My beloved friends, let us continue to love each other since love comes from God. Everyone who loves is born of God and experiences a relationship with God. The person who refuses to love doesn’t know the first thing about God, because God is love—so you can’t know him if you don’t love. This is how God showed his love for us: God sent his only Son into the world so we might live through him. This is the kind of love we are talking about—not that we once upon a time loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to clear away our sins and the damage they’ve done to our relationship with God. 1 John 4:7

God is love. When we take up permanent residence in a life of love, we live in God and God lives in us. This way, love has the run of the house, becomes at home and mature in us, so that we’re free of worry on Judgment Day—our standing in the world is identical with Christ’s. There is no room in love for fear. Well-formed love banishes fear. Since fear is crippling, a fearful life—fear of death, fear of judgment—is one not yet fully formed in love. 1 John 4:17

 

It’s for you.

We Exist to Share Jesus

He was born to unwed parents.
His mother, Mary, got pregnant. She said it was from God. Even her fiancé, Joseph, didn’t believe her at first. He could have had her ostracized or even killed. But God had other plans.
 
He grew up as a carpenter like his mom’s husband.
Now that’s humble…unassuming… blue collar.
 
His followers were a rag-tag bunch.
Unschooled & illiterate fisherman, tax-men, swindlers, hussies, and boozers – men and women who should never be at the center of the greatest life in history. These are the people that He chose, who followed Him, believed in Him, and began the spread of Christianity that has swept through history since.
 
He was all about love.
Love God. Love one another. Don’t judge each other. Everything comes back to Love.
But don’t be confused, Love is not weak…
 
He helped the helpless.
The children, the sick, the dejected and the rejected… He healed them, helped them, and treated them with compassion.
 
He included the outcasts.
The adulteress, the homeless, the diseased, the insane…
the leaders of religion wanted outcasts exiled or even killed. Love stood in the way.
Love healed, helped, dined with and delighted in them.
 
He was HATED by the religious leaders.
They liked their insider status.
Love challenged they ways they made faith complicated, an insider’s game that only they could win. Love made them look like fools, outsmarting them every time.
And the more the people followed Love, the more the leaders of religion wanted Him dead.
 
He was judged, rejected, and killed.
The religious leaders thought if they killed Love, His way would be finished. So they did it.
They said Love was a fake.
They arrested Him, and they had Him killed.
But that was exactly what He intended.
 
He beat death.
Love created life, the world, and everything in it, so it really shouldn’t be surprising that death couldn’t stop Him. But for the people who thought He was just a man, it was a tremendous shock when they went to visit His dead body in the grave and found…
 
He is ALIVE.
He will never leave. He created you and me, and He wants to be with us every single day.
If you believe in Him, He will change your life into a dynamic, unending, BIG life. That is just the kind of God He is.
 

Judgement-Free Faith

“Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn others, or it will all come back against you. Forgive others, and you will be forgiven.” -Jesus in Luke 6:37 

“Do not judge others, and you will not be judged.” Jesus in Matthew 7:2

God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.
John 3:17

“You judge me by human standards, but I do not judge anyone.” -Jesus in John 8:15

“I tell you, love your enemies. Help and give without expecting a return. You’ll never—I promise—regret it. Live out this God-created identity the way our Father lives toward us, generously and graciously, even when we’re at our worst. Our Father is kind; you be kind.”  Luke 6:35

9 Jesus told this parable to certain people who had convinced themselves that they were righteous and who looked on everyone else with disgust: 10 “Two people went up to the temple to pray. One was a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11  The Pharisee stood and prayed about himself with these words, ‘God, I thank you that I’m not like everyone else—crooks, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12  I fast twice a week. I give a tenth of everything I receive.’ 13  But the tax collector stood at a distance. He wouldn’t even lift his eyes to look toward heaven. Rather, he struck his chest and said, ‘God, show mercy to me, a sinner.’ 14  I tell you, this person went down to his home justified rather than the Pharisee. All who lift themselves up will be brought low, and those who make themselves low will be lifted up.” Luke 18:9-14


Jesus returned to the Mount of Olives, but early the next morning he was back again at the Temple. A crowd soon gathered, and he sat down and taught them. As he was speaking, the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in the act of adultery. They put her in front of the crowd. “Teacher,” they said to Jesus, “this woman was caught in the act of adultery. The law of Moses says to stone her. What do you say?”  They were trying to trap him into saying something they could use against him, but Jesus stooped down and wrote in the dust with his finger.  They kept demanding an answer, so he stood up again and said, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” Then he stooped down again and wrote in the dust.   When the accusers heard this, they slipped away one by one, beginning with the oldest, until only Jesus was left in the middle of the crowd with the woman. Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them stay to condemn you?”   “No, Lord,” she said.    And Jesus said, “Neither do I then.  Go and sin no more.” 
John 8:1-11

 

It’s for you.