Framework #22 – “Doctrine of God: God is Good”

03 - Doc of God - God is Good (pic)Free files for youth pastors:

03 – Doc of God – God is Good (mp3)

03 – Doc of God – God is Good (ppt)

03 – Doc of God – God is Good (lesson notes)

03 – Doc of God – God is Good (fillout sheet)

Go ahead and be thinking to yourself: “In what ways are humans like God and not like God?” What does it mean that we were created in God’s image? Did God fully make us like Him? Can we fully become like Him? Did He share everything true about Himself partly with us? Can we become more like Him if we’re already in His image? Continue reading

Framework #21 – “Doctrine of God: God is Great”

02-doc-of-god-god-is-great-blog-picFree files for youth pastors:

02 – Doctrine of God: God is Great (ppt)

02 – Doctrine of God: God is Great (mp3)

02 – Doctrine of God: God is Great (fillout sheet)

02 – Doctrine of God: God is Great (notes)

One question I love to get students thinking about is “What kind of spouse do you want to live with for the rest of your life?” I want them to go ahead and think of those real important qualities that truly matter as that will affect both who and how they date. If you’re a student reading this, go ahead and do that now… In the same way, God has qualities and characteristics. They are what we call His attributes. Who do you imagine God to be? Do you know what God is REALLY like? God wants us to know Him! Continue reading

Book Study: “The Grace and Truth Paradox” (chapters 1 & 2)

grace-and-truth-paradoxFree file for youth pastors:

The Grace and Truth Paradox (chapter 1 and 2 discussion)

I don’t want my students to be either a bunch of theoogical egg-heads or a group of jerks walking around and debating theology.  I so desire them to be like Christ.  I want them to be full of grace and truth just like Jesus is (John 1:14).  I want my students to be able to love a Mormon, to give to an Atheist, to help a Muslim, etc.  At the same time, I want my students to defend the truths of Scripture, the proclaim the gospel, and to be willing to die for Christ.  I pray for them to be full of grace and truth like Jesus.  Continue reading

Framework #20 – “Doctrine of God: God is One”

01-doc-of-god-god-is-one-blog-pic2Free files for youth pastors:

01 – Doc of God – God is One (mp3)

01 – Doc of God – God is One (ppt)

01 – Doc of God – God is One (fillout sheet)

01 – Doc of God – God is One (sermon notes)

Right behind our church stands a huge Hindu Temple. Can you believe it? In Alabama “the Bible belt” of all places! If you’re not aware, Hindus believe in many gods: polytheism. If you’re a monotheist like me, then you think they are nuts, too. But honestly, our American culture has gone so “postmodern” and there is no belief in absolute truth anymore. So here’s what I’m thinking…if postmodern people try to tell us that their belief is true for them and our belief is true for us, then that means both their God is real and our God is real. And if that’s true, then why can’t they just be honest and admit that what they are really saying is either: “all this God stuff ain’t really true” or “there is really more than one God.” In other words, postmodernism (tolerance) really is no better than polytheism (Hinduism). But Scripture teaches monotheism: there is only one God who exists, and He exists in three persons (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit). Continue reading

Framework #15 – MACRO Theology – Doctrine of Sin

Files for Youth Pastors:

08 – Sin (mp3)

08 – Sin (ppt)

08 – Sin (fillout sheet)

“Simon says, ‘Read this blog.’”  Yeah, I love playing Simon Says with students.  I don’t do it often because it gets old and the students learn all my tricks very quickly.  “Simon says, ‘Raise your arms in the air.  Now put your arms down.’”  Those who raised their arms in the air stay in the game, those who put their arms down are out of the game.  My personal favorite is “Simon says, ‘Jump up.”  That’s a sure fire way to put everyone out of the game…because Simon never said to come back down!  When thinking through the doctrine of sin, we must understand that an unsaved person is a slave to sin and will do whatever sin tells them to do.  Continue reading

Part 5: How to Preach/Teach to Teenagers

You probably will think I’m crazy, but the greatest preaching and teaching I’ve ever heard…  I’m talking about the most passionate, most engaging, most clear and understandable, most personal, most theological, most applicable, and even most humorous…  I didn’t hear these greatest sermons and lessons at the coolest, hippest conference around, nor did I hear them from the new, innovative church.  However, the best preaching and teaching I’ve ever heard in my life were from the 4 years that I spend in seminary.  See, I told you that you’d think I’m crazy!

Seminary was amazing.  Honestly, I miss it like crazy.  Being around a bunch of people who desired to go as deep as you do, soaking in the biblical knowledge from professors who were also pastors over the weekend, getting to study the best of books, being forced to study all of the notes, and constantly being pointed to Christ…  Agh, I miss those grueling days.  But to be even more honest, I would never trade it for the church.  There is nothing more rewarding than using what I’ve learned in seminary here in the church.  I’m so thankful for my seminary because my professors weren’t weird, crusty, old, decrepid, boring, antiseptic, snoozers.  Rather, they were pretty cool guys who could put the deepest of theology in the clearest and understandable way. Continue reading

Part 4: How to Preach/Teach to Teenagers

I’ve heard some teenagers say, “I hate going to church because I never can remember everything.”  Those students feel like every message is different with a different moral, a different truth, a different discipline, or a different skill to adopt to their life.  On the other hand I’ve heard teenagers say, “I hate going to church because the preacher says the same thing every Sunday.”  Honestly, I think they are both right…and both wrong.  When we preach/teach to teens, we need to communicate the vastly different stories while always coming back to the same point…the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Continue reading

Framework #01 – Overview of Systematic Theology – Ephesians 4:11-16

Free files for youth pastors:

01 – Systematic Theology Overview – Eph 4:11-16 (mp3)

01 – Systematic Theology Overview – Eph 4:11-16 (handout)

01 – Systematic Theology Overview – Eph 4:11-16 (ppt)

01 – Systematic Theology Overview – Eph 4:11-16 (Study Notes)

01 – Systematic Theology Overview – Eph 4:11-16 (Sermon Notes)

Do you ever get tired of the same old, same old when it comes to youth curriculum?  I don’t know about you, but I get so frustrated with the low expectations writers and publishers have on teenagers.  Do they think teenagers aren’t studying British Literature, Calculus, Geography, Physics, Chemistry, Advanced Grammar, Western Civilization, etc?  If these students are studying those tough courses in school, no wonder they are bored in church with the shallow and watered-down lessons, studies, and sermons we give them!  Continue reading

Framework #19 – MACRO Theology – The Theological Triage

Free files for youth pastors:

12 – Theological Triage (ppt)

12 – Theological Triage (mp3)

12 – Theological Triage (handout)

When I was visiting some people in the hospital last week, I noticed a college aged girl who was walking in a group of people…but she was limping pretty badly.  I guess it didn’t throw me off to badly since I had already seen one patient walking around in a construction hard-hat and another walking around in furry-bunny slippers.  A minute or two after the group had passed, the girls came walking back towards us again, this time all by her lonesome.  She stopped and asked me if I knew where the emergency room was.  Apparently, this girl had been walking around the hospital with a torn ACL…looking for the emergency room!  She definitely needed immediate attention since her knee was swollen to the size of a honeydew melon.  But what if someone walked in with a gun-shot wound, or a woman in labor, or someone vomiting, or someone with diarrhea (yeah, I’m going to stop there)?  Which one should get attention first, second, third?  Hospitals have developed a system for these kinds of dilemmas called “triage.”  Triage comes from a French word meaning “to sort.”  And this system will help us theologically. Continue reading

Part 3: How to Preach/Teach to Teenagers

Free file for youth pastors:

Diagram – How To Preach OT for Christ

I can remember looking out of the car window very intently while riding through Alberta, Alabama as a young little dude.  Trying to see all the way across the street and into the Krispy Kreme restaurant, I usually could catch a glimpse of my Uncle Paul there in the evenings.  From what I remember, he would love to meet his friends there pretty regularly to have a cup of coffee and a doughnut with them.  I always used to wonder what they would talk about so often for so long.  Now, without even ever getting to be a part of those conversations, I’m convinced I know.  How do I know?  I’ve been around people for 30 years now.  Old, middle-aged, married, single, college students, teenagers, and children…we all love to sit and talk about life in stories.  Continue reading