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Tag: Jesus Christ

Apostles’ Creed 3: God the Son (Part 2)

This is part of an ongoing series on the Cornerstone Confirmation Curriculum we are developing at First Trinity Lutheran Church. (Main Confirmation Page)

Small Group Footer 580

The second article of the Apostle’s Creed focuses on Jesus Christ, the Son of God. In this lesson, we focus on how Jesus is both True God and True Man, and why that matters. Also, despite our sinfulness, He loves us and wants a relationship with us, and will stop at nothing to win us back.

Two “Natures” of Jesus

Read John 1:1-2

  • Circle: “the Word”
  • Margin: Write “Jesus” in the margin, then draw arrows connecting “the Word” to Jesus.

Read Matthew 4:2, John 11:35, and John 19:28

  • Underline the human needs and emotions that Jesus had.

Because God is holy (without sin), He needed a holy (sinless) sacrifice to pay for our sins. The Father knew we could never pay that debt, because we are sinful beings from birth. But the payment had to be made by someone under the Law (ie, a human). Therefore, God chose to send His Son, Jesus, who was truly God (John 1) to be born as a man, and therefore truly human in all respects (Matthew 4, John 11, John 19), only without sin. Jesus was therefore able to be the holy sacrifice the Father required to pay for our sins.

In addition, we know that Jesus is able to empathize with us and understand our needs and wants because He lived as one of us, experiencing the same emotions and feelings that we do. He is not a distant God, unable to understand our daily struggles, but rather one who walked through life with the same struggles we face.

How does Jesus relate to us?

Read John 10:25-30

  • Underline: I know them.
  • Margin: Jesus knows me.

Read Luke 15:1-7

  • Underline: What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open country, and go after the one that is lost, until he finds it?
  • Margin: Jesus pursues me.

Read John 7:53-8:11

  • Underline: And Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you; go, and from now on sin no more.”
  • Margin: Jesus forgives me.

Read 1 Peter 5:7

  • Underline: Entire Verse
  • Margin: Jesus helps me.

Jesus died not only to make the payment for our sin, but to have a relationship with us. He knows all of our joys and fears; all of our strengths and faults. He knows me better than I know myself, and yet He loves me. Like a shepherd who has lost just one sheep, Jesus pursues me, forgives me and helps me in my time of trouble. He doesn’t do this because we deserve it, but because He loves us. He relates to us as friend and brother, always concerned about what’s best for us.

Class Documents

Apostles’ Creed 2: God the Son (Part 1)

This is part of an ongoing series on the Cornerstone Confirmation Curriculum we are developing at First Trinity Lutheran Church. (Main Confirmation Page)

Small Group Footer 580

The second article of the Apostle’s Creed focuses on Jesus Christ, the Son of God. In this lesson, we focus on our own fall from sin and the need for a Savior.

The Fall into Sin

Read Genesis 3:1-5

  • Underline: neither shall you touch it, lest you die.
  • Margin: No! See Genesis 2:16-17.

Read Genesis 2:16-17

Eve mistakenly added to God’s command (He never said not to touch the fruit, only to not eat it) and the devil took advantage to tempt her to sin. We must be careful to pay attention to what God actually says, not what we think or wish He said.

Read Genesis 3:6-7

  • Underline: she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate.
  • Margin: Original Sin

This first sin is referred to as the “original” sin. There are two types of sin: original and actual. Adam and Eve actually committed this sin, but everyone else since then was born with original sin. That means that from the moment we are conceived, we are sinful people, inheriting that sin from our parents, all the way back to Adam and Eve.

The Need for a Savior

Read Genesis 3:8-13

  • Underline: “The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate.” … The serpent deceived me, and I ate.
  • Margin: Take Responsibility

After the Fall, God confronts Adam and Eve about their actions. Adam’s first instinct is now to blame others (God, this is really your fault for giving me Eve). We try to say things like “The devil made me do it” or blame our friends or siblings. Instead, when faced with sin, we should take responsibility for what we’ve done and ask for God to forgive us.

Read Genesis 3:14-15

  • Underline: I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.
  • Margin: Jesus (Messiah)

Read Genesis 3:16-19

  • Underline: dust you are and to dust you will return.
  • Margin: Sin Led to Death

After confronting them, God promised hope for Adam and Eve in the form of a Savior, namely Jesus. Jesus would come and defeat sin, death and the devil because we are powerless to do so. After confessing our sin, we place our trust in Jesus, who forgives our sins, not because we deserve it, but because He has paid the price for them. However, as we see in verses 16-19, there are still consequences for our sin. There is death, sickness and suffering in our life because of our sin. Yet God triumphs in the end, bringing eternal life to all who trust in Jesus.

Class Documents

Dread and Awe

Easter weekend is finally here. Of all the major church holidays we celebrate, this (extended) weekend is my favorite. From Maundy Thursday’s celebration of the Last Supper to Good Friday’s reflection on the death of Jesus. But Easter is the capstone. It’s the crescendo we’ve been building to since Christmas.

This year, I’m seeing it in a different light. No longer just an awe-filled celebration of victory over death, but also a dread-filled moment where we step back and realize exactly who it is we serve. It’s the healthy fear of the Lord that we hear about throughout the Scriptures. It’s the logic-defying truth that God is even bigger than death, a concept our limited minds can not truly understand.

Read on for this week’s cover article in the announcements.

Recently, we showed a section of the Gospel of John in worship about the resurrection of Lazarus. I experienced the story from a new perspective that day. Oftentimes, I miss the feelings behind stories—the mood. Music and solid acting really conveyed the sense of dread and awe the people must have felt at seeing Lazarus walk out of the tomb. My heart flutters just thinking of being there first-hand to witness it.

Flash forward to “Good” Friday, and Jesus is dying on the cross. After He dies, His friends are mourning and distraught. Because it was Friday, there was not time to prepare the burial spices and ointments, so Jesus was laid in a tomb until after the Sabbath. But what His friends found that first Easter morning was the unexpected.

And as they were frightened and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, “Why do you seek the living among the dead? Luke 24:5

What dread and awe must the women have felt upon hearing these words? Or Peter, as he ran to the tomb to confirm the news of Jesus’ resurrection himself, upon entering and seeing only the cloths? Or the two men on the road to Emmaus, whose hearts burned within them as Jesus secretly taught them along the way?

Two-thousand years later, do you feel the same dread and awe? Jesus, who was dead, is alive. It defies logic. It is incomprehensible. It’s awesome and fills me with dread at the same time.

Jesus is risen. He is indeed. Alleluia!

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