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The Benefit of Doubt Lent 2015


LENT 2015
The Benefit of Doubt
Breaking the Idol of Certainty

Scripture teaches us that we are saved by faith, so what happens when we find ourselves struggling with doubt? Most people assume that faith is only as strong as a person is certain and that doubt is the enemy of faith. But the all-important center of Christianity is not a mental assent to correct doctrine; it’s a life-giving relationship with the person of Jesus Christ. Faith is not the absence of doubt but rather a commitment to Christ even in the midst of uncertainty. 

February 18 - Ash Wednesday | 12:05pm at Wellmark YMCA

Join us Ash Wednesday for the beginning of Lent as we gather for the imposition of ashes, holy communion, contemplative prayer and evocative music inspired by the Brilliance and the Liturgists.

February 22 - The Idol of Certainty | Genesis 32v24-30

They call faith "faith" for a reason. God calls us into a covenantal faith that embraces doubt and uncertainty in the context of a love relationship. Finding our life in “Jesus Christ and Him Crucified” is radically different from a certainty-seeking, doubt-shunning faith.

March 1 - House of Cards | John 5v36-40

Questions can sometimes topple faith like a house of cards. In this sermon, we will introduce the idea that following Jesus is the central aspect of faith. This frees us to question and critique different aspects of our faith, without losing that faith.

March 8 - The Faith to Doubt | James 1v5-8

Faith is sometimes understood as the lack of doubt. Doubt can be seen as the enemy of faith; however, doubt is not always the enemy. When wrestling with God, it is important not to doubt God’s character. We will always have doubt about questions on a broad range because we are human and finite, but God’s character need never be doubted.

March 15 - Embodied Faith | Mark 2v1-5 

God’s invitation is to a relationship, not a belief system necessarily. What ultimately decides the fate of people is not the content of their brain, but the orientation of our heart.

March 22 - Imagine | Hebrews 11v1

As Hebrews states, faith is the substance of anticipated things, the conviction about things not yet visible. Faith becomes a type of vision that we have about the future.  As Christians, we have faith in Jesus that points towards a future free from wars, religion, countries, pain, sin, suffering, and death. However, it can be easy to become cynical and angry when facing unfixable situations. Yet, God calls us to have peace and gentleness. There are essentially two outcomes when facing a difficult situation - a person either can follow in faith or a person becomes angry, bitter, and hostile towards this world. As Christians, to follow in faith, is to remember the story that we live in.

March 29 - The Promise of the Cross | 2 Corinthians 2v1-2

All that we need to trust God for is found in the cross. When we understand what took place through the ‘foolishness of the cross’ we understand all we need to know about God and other humans. When you know the character of God revealed on the cross and what he things about us as revealed on the cross, you’ve got the essence of all you need to know about anyone.

* This series will be based on the book Benefit of the Doubt: Breaking the Idol of Certainty by Gregory A. Boyd.

Earlier Event: February 18
Ash Wednesday Service
Later Event: February 22
Small Group Kickoff